Which Music Formats Drive Sales? - eMarketer

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Which Music Formats Drive Sales?

Vinyl contributes to overall music sales growth

January 11, 2016

Though vinyl album sales grew by 56.6% in 2015—to 6 million units—they only make up a small portion of music sales in North America, according to 2015 research.

Data from BuzzAngle Music revealed that total music sales, which include album sales, song sales, on-demand song streams and audio streams, grew by 10%. Overall, a total of 397.4 million albums were sold in 2015.

Breaking it down, there were 106.4 million digital albums sold in 2015—a 1.1% decrease from the year prior. Additionally, physical album sales grew by 1.1%, and 101.9 million units were sold.

Separate data from Nielsen also looked at US music sales in 2015, however, its numbers were higher. For example, Nielsen found that a total of 549.4 million albums were sold in 2015, a 15.2% increase from the year before. This included all albums, track-equivalent albums, as well as streaming-equivalent albums.

Similar to BuzzAngle’s data, Nielsen also revealed that vinyl album sales grew. They increased by 29.8% and accounted for 11.9 million albums sold. Still, they just made up a tiny portion of overall album sales.

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