Record Store Day Brings Explosive Sales to Indie Stores, SoundScan Data Shows

People in Record Store - H 2012
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People in Record Store - H 2012

Indie stores posted a 26.6 percent gain in album sales for the week ending April 22.

NEW YORK -- Record Store Day produced explosive sales gains at indie stores, that helped the U.S. industry slightly outpace the prior week's album sales.

For the week ending April 22, indie stores posted a whopping 26.6 percent gain in album sales to 528,000 units from 417,000 for the prior week ending April 15, according to Nielsen SoundScan. That gain of 111,000 units was responsible for almost all of the U.S. industry's overall gain of 113,000 units over the prior week with album sales growing to 5.72 million from 5.61 million units.

However, in a year over year comparison overall album sales declines 11.6 percent from the 6.5 million units scanned in the corresponding week of 2011.

Vinyl album sales at indie stores grew 182.7 percent to 147,000 units from 52,000 units in the prior week. Likewise, indie store singles sales grew 1,016.7 percent to 67,000 units from 6,000 units, while 12-inch sales in those stores grew nearly 3,000 percent to 61,000 units from 2,000 units in the prior week.

Looking at year-over-year comparisons is a little bit trickier since Record Store Day fell on April 21 in week 16 of the SoundScan year in 2012 while in 2011 it fell on April 16 in week 15.

So in order to compare apples to apples, Billboard.Biz is adding together both weeks from both years and found that the overall industry album sales was down 11.4 percent during the two week period to 11.3 million units from the 12.8 million units scanned in 2011. Likewise indie album sales were down 11.4% during that period to 945,000 units from 1.13 million units in the prior year.

Within album sales, indie vinyl album scans grew 1.5 percent for the two week total to 199,000 units this year versus 196,000 last year. Singles sale displayed greater growth than album sales, posting a 19.7% gain for the two week period to 73,000 units from the prior year's total of 61,000 units, while 12-inch singles grew 16.7. percent to 63,000 units from 2011's two-week total of 54,000 units.