Nielsen Music Midyear Report: Consumption Up, Sales Down
July 6, 2016 at 3:23 PM (PT)
NIELSEN MUSIC's Midyear 2016 Sales Report is out, and it's a combination of good and bad news for the music industry.
Total U.S. revenue for the first six months of the year were at $1.98 billion vs. $1.82 billion last year, an 8.9% increase, largely fueled by streaming. With 208.9 billion songs streams (which translates into 139.2 million album units, given 1,500 streams equaling one album), the total represents an increase of 58.7% over 2015, with 113.6 billion audio-only and 95.3 billion video streams (defined as a view on YOUTUBE and VEVO mostly, but also a small percentage on TIDAL and APPLE MUSIC).
On the negative side, album sales (including TEA 10 track sales equal one album unit) were down 13.6%, with 100.3 million total sales. CD sales were also down 11.6% at 50 million. Digital album sales were down from 53.7 million to 43.8 million. Only vinyl sales, a niche market, bucked the trend, up 11.4% to 6.2 million. New album releases fell 20.2% to 44.1 million units, while catalog albums fell only 7.7% to 56.2 million.
Digital downloads were down from 531.6 million to 404.3 million, while current track sales fell nearly 40%. Catalog track sales were down 6.4% to 236.6 million units.
DRAKE was the year's biggest winner, with "Views" consumed a total of 2.61 million times -- 1.3 million in sales, 317k TEA and 979k stream-equivalent -- one of only three million-selling albums, topped by ADELE's "25" at 1.4 million and BEYONCE's "Lemonade" at 1.2 million.
DRAKE sold the most digital albums (1.4 million), while DAVID BOWIE's final album, "Blackstar," was the year's top-selling vinyl release at 57k. FLO RIDA's "My House" is the year's best-selling song, with 1.95 million track sales, and just one of 16 total songs to sell over a million so far this year. The year's Top 200 tracks have scanned 83.8 million units total through the end of JUNE.
Digital retailers were responsible for 43.7% of the album market, while "non-traditional": CD retailers, such as AMAZON and supermarkets, saw an 8.3% uptick.
Total album consumption -- TEA, SEA and overall units -- totaled 279.9 million, up 8.9%, a tribute to the dominance of streaming.
Read the full report here.