Vinyl just keeps on growing, but is that growth slowing down?
The breakneck resurgence in vinyl started back in 2007, and sales have been booming ever since. Just to highlight the current performance, here is a look at sales over the past few years.
Vinyl LP Sales 2013 – 2015 (in millions)
(US-based; Nielsen Music)
That’s a path that will continue to elevate, but it’s now unclear if the gains are cooling. DMN has now received exclusive, preliminary data from Nielsen Music, and the information shows that vinyl sales are already up 10 percent versus the same point last year, when looking at the top 100 vinyl LP sellers YTD.
The only problem is that 2015 sales were up roughly 30% over 2014, matching similar percentage gains the year earlier. The question now is whether a 10 percent Q1 jump represents a broader deceleration.
Second quarter data will be critical, as will information on overall sales. The figure obtained by DMN is just a measurement of the top-selling stuff, and not the broader pile (including sales outside the US). Additionally, Nielsen isn’t tracking used sales, a critical part of the resurgence.
One thing that isn’t in doubt is that vinyl sales are still increasing, and will probably continue to elevate over the next few years. In its email to DMN, Nielsen also outlined a few reasons for the continued growth:
(1) First, it’s a growing trend to own old records. 60% of all LP sales are catalog (18 months or older), and the top records sold are from artists like Bob Marley & The Wailers, The Beatles, and Pink Floyd.
(2) Not to mention, millennials, who are 60% more likely to buy LP records than the general population according to the same dataset. It’s the younger demographic that are heavily investing in vinyl records to build their collections.
(3) And then there’s Rock. Of all LPs sold last year, 68% of them were of the Rock genre. By stark contrast, genres like EDM and Country are barely a blip on vinyl sales charts.
More as we receive more sales information.
(Image by Ian T. McFarland, Creative Commons, Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic, cc by-sa 2.0)