Why People Don’t Buy CDs?

January 29, 2010

We ran a little poll for few days and thought to ponder upon the results to realize why CDs aren’t being bought and why we rely on downloading music for free.

Well even without the poll, we all do know how free is better than paid. That’s one of the reasons why people don’t buy music. Since the day they started listening to music, it was available to them for free and so they thought that it is free. Now, when they realize that it’s not free and you have to pay for it, it’s kind of too late to get your conscience right and force yourself to pay for something which you have always thought to get for free.

Based on the voting poll and comments, most of the people (48%) believed they would buy the albums if royalties get implemented and artists get paid per sale. They believe that they are not supposed to spend money if artist isn’t even being supported, while the labels make lame claims “buy the albums, support the artist”.

Nazeeha a Canada based Pakistani commented

You can’t find original Pakistani CDs here. I know, it’s soooo sad…. so my source for music is online…

Naash a Bahrain based Pakistani commented

ill buy them if they are available .. In Bahrain or other GCC countries you wont find any noori , call , mizraab , mauj or karvan CD’s ..

These comments shed light on why record labels should already be selling CDs through their websites or through other music websites. I wonder what is so hard in implementing that model of sales.

Another high percentage (29%) thought that CDs are expensive and if prices are lowered down they will grab some cases. The price of CD (Rs 100) isn’t a lot but not for the audience who have had free music for couple of years and have bought CDs for as low as Rs 20. Labels can try experimenting the model by bringing the prices down and increasing the number of sales to cover up the difference.

20 % people said they are already buying the CDs to support the label/artist and the industry.

Not too long ago, a print publication by The News, Instep Today published an article shedding some light on why musician’s don’t release singles. That was an interesting article and it quoted some interesting and successful cases from the west. I also felt the need for this model to come out. However, based on the poll, only 3 % voted that they will buy music if they could buy singles and not complete albums.

To bring the best out of the current model, I believe following actions should be taken:

  • Royalties must be implemented.
  • Implementation of online sales, primarily for audience abroad.


Based on comments on this post on our Facebook Page another interesting fact came to view. People don’t find the songs they want in one CD, which means that Labels should think about releasing CDs based on charts and mixed compilations.