US Vinyl Sales Revenue Hit a 30 Year High in 2018
US Vinyl Sales Revenue Hit a 30 Year High in 2018
Source: Egon/NowAgain Records

US Vinyl Sales Revenue Hit a 30-Year High in 2018

As CDs tumble into obscurity, vinyl continues to reclaim physical market share.

A new report from The Recording Industry Association of America paints a hopeful picture for the future of wax. According to their end of year revenue report for 2018, revenue from vinyl sales now comprise more than a third of total physical formats, hitting its highest share of physical sales since 1988 with a growth of 8%  in 2018.

But while acetates climb back into the fold and show signs of surpassing its rival formats, physical sales at large are still taking a hit. According to the same report, CD revenue shrunk by 34%, dropping below $1 billion in sales revenue for the first time since 1986. And while the physical market continues to lose an unending fight against streams in a playlist and click economy, even digital download sales are being trampled in the streaming landscape. The RIAA claims that revenue from digital downloads fell another 25% in 2018, occupying just 11% of total music sales last year.

Streaming, of course, maintains a stronghold, contributing 75% of total revenue in 2018 across a range of formats, including premium and free subscription services, as well as streaming radio services.