Vinyl sales were up 55% in the first half of the year, according to data from the Entertainment Retailers Association and Official Charts Company. And while they still remain a niche product overall, ERA stats also suggest many music fans will pay a premium to buy music on good old fashioned vinyl, even though many are likely to never actually put their records on a record player.
168,296 vinyl records were sold in the UK in the first half of 2011, compared with 108,307 in 2010. And ERA reckons consumers will pay on average £16.30 for a vinyl record, compared to £7.82 for CDs and £6.80 for digital. Radiohead alone contributed 20,771 of those vinyl units with their ‘King Of Limbs’ record, while limited edition vinyl releases for the increasingly popular Record Store Day helped boost the overall sales of the format too.
Commenting on these stats, ERA boss Kim Bayley told CMU: “Vinyl may still be a niche format, but it is growing fast. Whether it is the ‘warmer’ sound many music fans appreciate, the large-scale artwork of a twelve-inch sleeve or its sheer retro appeal, vinyl seems to be capturing the imagination of buyers despite the fact it typically costs twice as much as a CD containing exactly the same music. Much of the focus in the music industry [of late] has been on cutting prices, partly in response to the rise of internet piracy. The success of vinyl shows music buyers will pay a premium if we deliver them a package they really love”.