If you want a professional site that has a high amount of traffic and retains its visitors its probably a good idea to avoid adding background music to your site.
Here are some reasons why we recommend avoiding it.
Unless your business is selling music or music services having background music play on your website makes it seem unprofessional. This lowers your sites credibility and you will lose your users. People that are on your site are most likely looking for information they are not there to listen to music. If you think about all the big websites around such as Google, Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, IMDB, none of these play music and for good reason too.
Streaming a full song as an mp3 can be 3-4mb in size. If this is played to 20 visitors a day then you are using 60-80mb of bandwidth a day just by playing this song. Most standard hosting packages include 5gb of bandwidth per month but you can see by streaming songs this can quickly evaporate forcing you to buy larger more expensive packages. One way around this is to loop a short segment of the music which leads me to my next point…
If a segment of a track is cut out and looped this can save lots of bandwidth, however if anyone comes to your website and spends any amount of respectable time there it won’t take long before they go crazy listening to the same 20-30 seconds of that loop which will probably force them to leave your site.
Everyone has different tastes in music, just because you love a track does not mean your user also does.
Computers are users by many for the majority of their day and in many cases users often have their own music playing whether it be cd, internet radio, mp3s etc. How annoying is it when you visit a site and it starts playing music on top of the music you are already listening to. In most cases this will prompt users to close your website.
Some people viewing your website are most likely in a public space such as their work and probably do not appreciate a song suddenly blurting out over there speakers they didn’t realise were on!
Having music playing will decrease the performance of the site, especially on slower machines. Not only will this make the user experience poor it will most likely when they won’t be back!