The RIAA has released its annual demographic profile of music consumers for 2003. The survey studied the music buying habits of over 2,900 consumers for last year.
Rock was the number one genre with 25.2 percent of the market, up from 24.7 in 2002. Rap/Hip-Hop was second, with 13.3 percent of the market. R&B came in third, followed by Country.
The study also showed that businesses other than traditional record stores continue to become the most common outlets for music purchasing. 52.8 percent of buyers shopped for music at department stores, electronics retailers, book stores and other non-music-only stores. Purchasing at record stores declined again, down from 36.8 in 2002 to 33.2 percent last year.
Music sold online increased to five percent of the market, up from 3.4 in 2002. And legal, digital downloading increased to 1.3 percent, up from only .5 percent the year before.
"This is an exciting time to be a music fan," RIAA Chairman/CEO Mitch Bainwol said in a statement. "Never before in the music community's history has there been so many ways to enjoy music legitimately."
By gender, music purchasers are an unsurprising 50/50 split between males and females. But there is a continued gap between younger and older consumers. The percentage of buyers between the ages of 10-24 declined to only 30 percent, down from 33.7 percent in 2002. However, the number of consumers over the age of 45 increased from 25.5 percent in 2002 to 26.6 percent in 2003. Click Here for more details.
Commenting on this statistic, Bainwol said, "The decline in young buyers, who are the most active downloaders on peer to peer systems, is another confirmation that illegal downloading is one factor, along with economic conditions and competing forms of entertainment, that is displacing legitimate sales."