In our on-demand culture, where we want instant gratification and always have options right at our fingertips, the “I don’t want to wait because I want it now” mindset exists everywhere from movies to shopping to TV shows and of course, music — specifically, our listening experience with regards to skipping songs.

Music Machinery blogger Paul Lamere analyzed the skipping behavior of Spotify users based on over a billion songs across a global base of over a million users. Some highlights from his analysis are:

  • The likelihood of skipping a song is nearly 25% at just 5 seconds into a song.
  • Only 50% of listeners will have made it to the end of a song.
  • The highest percent of skips happen within the first 20 seconds of a song, and drops to a steady rate of .2-.5% after the 20 seconds.
  • Users under 20 have the highest rate of skips per song at over 50%, and the skipping rate drastically drops with an older demographic.
  • The skipping rate is higher when users are more engaged with their music.

With such frequent skipping of songs, it’s no wonder that music streaming services such as Spotify or Pandora offer paid subscriptions that allow users unlimited or additional skipping of songs. Lamere’s current analysis, however, doesn’t take into account if users are listening to their personally curated playlist or to another user’s playlist, nor the user’s level of familiarity with tracks in a particular playlist. Given that users are skipping tracks in its entirety, it’d be an interesting follow-up analysis to see the behavior around users skipping sections within a track to get to a main chorus or the drop for an EDM track (which has been illustrated jokingly, but may hold some truth). In the meantime, we’ll look forward to seeing Lamere’s next post on skipping behavior broken down by genres, songs, and artists.

Read the full analysis on Music Machinery.

Photo Credit: Music Machinery