The number of physical stores selling music in the UK reached an all-time high in 2014, according to new figures due to be published in the ERA Yearbook later today (Tuesday, February 24).
The number of outlets selling music increased by 20.4% to 10,391 in 2014.
In comparison, the number of outlets selling games increased by 1.3% to 5,665 in 2014 and the number of outlets selling video increased by 18.8% to 10,500.
The growth in the number of physical outlets comes despite the rapid growth of digital services. Industry estimates suggest there are now 123 digital entertainment services operating in the UK (76 music, 25 video and 22 games).
ERA CEO Kim Bayley said, “This is an extraordinary result which means that UK consumers have a greater choice of outlets from which to buy music, video and games than ever before. From specialist chains and independents, through to supermarkets and fashion stores, to internet retailers, download and streaming services we can all now access music, video and games wherever or whenever we want.”
Key reason for the growth in the number of physical outlets selling entertainment is an increase in the number of supermarket convenience stores and generalist retailers like Wilko, BHS and Matalan selling limited ranges of music and video aimed at the impulse market, according to ERA.
Said Bayley, “Physical outlets seem to have the edge when it comes to impulse and gift purchases. You cannot giftwrap a download or stream.”
Elsewhere in the ERA Yearbook, music was 50.2% physical in 2014 and 49.8% digital, while the market value of music streaming stood at £175.0m in 2014 – a 65.1% increase from 106.0m in 2013.
Vinyl’s market value was £25.9m in 2014 compared to £14.7m in 2013 – up 76.2%.
Thanks to Tom Pakinkis of Newsweek for this article