Study: Music Sales -- And CD Buyers -- Continues To Grow
March 6, 2012 at 12:06 PM (PT)
A new study by The NPD GROUP has found that the total number of people buying CDs increased for the second consecutive year, MARKETWATCH reports. In 2011, that number grew to 78 million.
Total music-track sales rose 4% last year, the first gain in many years. Paid download buyers increased 14% in 2011, to 45 million customers. Digital buyers also spent more at iTUNES MUSIC STORE, Amazon, MP3, and other digital music stores in 2011. The average annual expenditure for digital music rose 6% to $49. CD sales continued to decline, but the decrease was not nearly as steep as it has been over the last five years.
"It’s so obvious what has happened in the last year or two," NPD SVP/Industry Analysis RUSS CRUPNICK said. "Consumers have a lot more ways to discover new music than they have had traditionally. Services like PANDORA, SPOTIFY and RHAPSODY have made it easier to get a song you like into your head, and consumers are then going to iTUNES or a physical store like TARGET and putting that song or album on their shopping list. With more mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, people are just spending more time with music."
CRUPNICK also credited the quality of music bring produced by artists such as ADELE and LADY GAGA, as well as what NPD believes is a decline in piracy. The report found a decline in unpaid music acquisition, such as P2P file sharing and trading music on hard drives, as the percentage of Internet users who downloaded music from a P2P site has fallen from a peak of 19% in 2006 to 13% in 2011.