Digital sales – the way forward?

From The BBC news site –

Digital music sale revenue tripled in the first half of 2005 compared with 2004, figures have suggested.

This certainly tallies with my experience – of late, digital sales have been out running CD sales for quite a few months (not counting CD sales at gigs, which is still the place where most CDs are sold). I’m probably selling three downloads for every two CDs, with people seemingly opting for the instant nature of downloads, and the reduced price (and no shipping price).

Which is great for me – it’s nice being able to pass the savings onto the buyer with not having to sell a physical CD. I still can’t envisage a time when I was releasing download-only albums as my main release format, but it means that I can continue to do what I do now, which is to press a run of CDs, and then have them become download-only when the CDs sell out. At some point in the future I might press a double or triple-pack CD of the first two or three solo Cds, but I’d have to shift a lot of them for it to be worth my while…

The download thing also means that I’ll be able to do the extra disc with the next album (Lessons Learned.. vol III?) as a download, which will mean that those ordering the next album will get something to listen to as soon as they order the album, and I won’t have to pay pressing costs for a CD I’m not actually selling… and as soon as the CD release date arrives, the extra disc becomes available for sale.

I do love the way that OSCommerce handles web-sales, managing downloads, differing prices for concession gig tickets, options to choose t-shirt sizes etc… when I get enough web-space, I’ll even be able to start offering the download albums in a range of formats… It’s all good.

Oh, which reminds me, Don’t forget to get your tickets for the gig at Darbucka on the 13th…

Soundtrack – Duke Ellington, ‘Classic Tracks Of The 1940s’