Maybe this is something you never thought of because you actually have a life and you have things that are actually important to think about, but I have.

Back in the day, when I was employed as a substandard stock-boy and grocery bagger at Pineway Supermarket in Oregon, Illinois, the store constantly had music playing in the background. That was appreciated by country music fans, and fairly well tolerated by those of us who aren't.

As a matter of fact, go into nearly any grocery store today and you'll hear some sort of "music to shop by" following you down the aisles, except for perhaps one store in particular. So why don't Aldi stores have music playing through the store's speakers?

White round circle speaker and grille hanging on white ceiling
You know you're getting great sound out of this thing. (Getty Images)
No problem. I brought my own music. (Getty Images)
No problem. I brought my own music. (Getty Images)

You May Have Noticed That Aldi Stores Do Things A Bit Differently Than Their Competitors

For example, did you know that Aldi stores in Illinois and everywhere else have an unlisted phone number? It's true. If you search for the phone number for your nearest Aldi store, you'll get (855) 955-2534 as a search result. Believe me, I tried this and wrote down what I heard when calling:

Thank you for contacting ALDI U.S. Due to our limited store staffing, the phone numbers for our stores are unlisted. This is part of our savings model that allows us to pass on significant savings to our customers.

The reason for the unlisted number is that Aldi wants the people working in their stores to be...well, working in their stores and not answering questions on the phone that could be answered by visiting Aldi's website instead.

I want to yell at a real person, not a website! (Getty Images)
I want to yell at a real person, not a website! (Getty Images)

Getting Back To The Topic At Hand, The Reason Aldi Stores In Illinois And Everywhere Else Don't Play Music In The Background Can Be Summed Up In A Single Word

And that word is the answer to many questions about why we do certain things a certain way--money. It's just plain cheaper to go without the music, and pass the savings on to customers.

Speaking with Reader’s Digest, John Stranger, the vice president group supervisor of creative agency EvansHardy+Young, said ALDI can save money by avoiding the licensing payments that would be owed for playing music inside stores. Typically, retail outlets partner with a third-party music service to provide soothing tunes that make for a pleasant shopping experience and encourage shoppers to linger.

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