Music fans deliver huge vote of confidence in record shops with 70% growth in physical sales since reopening

Record shops have made a triumphant return to business after the lockdown with aggregate sales of physical albums up 70.7% across the two weeks compared with the same period last year. 

Vinyl has done particularly well with unit sales up an astonishing 91%. Figures come from Entertainment Retailers Association (ERA) analysis of Official Charts Company data.


The year-on-year comparison is against a period in the first 2020 lockdown which took effect on March 23, 2020.

The significance is it follows real concerns over whether consumers would brave the High Street and revisit record stores following reopening on April 12, 2021. 

ERA CEO Kim Bayley said, “This is better than we could have hoped for. Like all physical retail, record shops have been through the wringer these past 12 months. Apart from dealing with furloughing staff, worrying about paying the bills and sickness among nearest and dearest, many shops have had to adapt to a whole new business model, and start trading online.

 “There was an understandable nervousness about reopening again, so to come back and see this kind of bounce has been a real boost. It’s a shot in the arm for the physical business too – who would have thought that pent-up demand would produce a 65% increase in CD sales in 2021! 

“The boom may not last forever, but it’s a touching vote of confidence from music fans that they really do appreciate music shops.”

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