Streaming Audio Helping Offset Album Sales Declines

The music industry, once feared dead in the wake of pirate music download websites and 99 cent  iTunes song purchases, is in the midst of a revenue renaissance.

Record labels are seeing the highest revenues in more than a decade, driven by streaming music services like Spotify, Pandora, and Apple Music.

So, while digital album sales and digital song sales are declining in the double digits, streaming music is growing at a rapid pace, helping to offset those sales declines.

According to Nielsen’s 2018 U.S. Music Midyear Report, audio on-demand song streaming was up 45.4% compared to the same period last year, while on-demand video song streaming was up 34.7% compared to last year.

And while album sales are down, Nielsen’s album equivalent consumption, which combines album sales, song sales and digital streaming, was up 18.4%.



Streaming music has become one of the most competitive businesses in media, with free ad-supported offerings from Spotify and Pandora gaining millions of users each quarter, and subscription services like Spotify Premium and Apple Music adding subscribers at a rapid clip.

You can find the full report from Nielsen here.

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