It used to be one of the biggest music merchandisers in the country. But Best Buy is now reportedly planning on pulling CDs from its stores, starting this summer.
Billboard reports that the retail giant announced their intention to stop the sales of CDs on July 1.
That doesn’t mean they are getting out of the business altogether. In an ironic twist, Best Buy says it will continue to sell vinyl records in its stores for the next two years. The once-obsolete medium has made a steady comeback in recent years, and the company says it will honor the agreement it made with vendors to carry vinyl until 2020.
Best Buy is not the only retailer considering a sharp shift in its music retail strategy. According to Business Insider, Target is now demanding that music suppliers provide CDs on a consignment basis, which means vendors would ultimately have to pay to take back Target’s unsold inventory of their discs.
“The changes we’re evaluating to our operating model, which shows a continued investment in our Entertainment business, reflect a broader shift in the industry and consumer behavior,” a Target spokesperson told Fortune Magazine. “We have nothing more to share at this time.”
It’s a move some feel is a sign of the times. Over 800 million CDs were sold in the U.S. in 2001, but sales have since dropped almost 90%, down to 89 million in 2017, according to Consequence of Sound.
As more customers lean toward buying music and video on digital platforms, Best Buy and Target’s latest moves may play a big role in determining the choices consumers have with their purchases in the future.
Despite physical CD sales declining, many on social media were shocked to hear of Best Buy’s plan.
Not everyone was surprised by the move, however, as commenters pointed to the ease of streaming or instantly downloading music instead of visiting a physical store to buy an album.