Should iTunes Tracks Go on Sale?

With both physical and digital record sales hitting new levels of suckage, the industry has to be freaking out over what to do. Apple has to be concerned about the precipitous declines in iTunes revenue. Is it time to reduce the price of a download, even temporarily? This is from Hits Daily Double.

Just last week, for the first time in the digital era, a label employed a once-derided strategy—putting a sale price on a single—as the ultimate hammer. RCA was battling for a #1 position on the monster Sia single “Cheap Thrills” and chose to lower the price for a few weeks. This significantly helped the label achieve the top spot on the charts in a tight, top-heavy field.

While we all look for sales on many consumer products that we buy—and don’t think less of merchants who put a blanket, towel, washer-dryer, refrigerator or groceries on sale—it’s long been seen as a sign of weakness to reduce the price of a single on iTunes. Well, that antiquated thinking has recently been replaced by an active analysis of the market and the use of a lower price to supercharge songs in today’s rapidly evolving marketplace.

Read the entire treatise here.



Alan Cross

is an internationally known broadcaster, interviewer, writer, consultant, blogger and speaker. In his 40+ years in the music business, Alan has interviewed the biggest names in rock, from David Bowie and U2 to Pearl Jam and the Foo Fighters. He’s also known as a musicologist and documentarian through programs like The Ongoing History of New Music.

One thought on “Should iTunes Tracks Go on Sale?

  • August 2, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    And why is the industry in a tailspin? Great old-tyme solution, really went deep into the thinktank.
    How did that work out for record stores, flooding the feature racks with $2-5 Grt Hits cds? (and all the good new music is sitting there at $19-25 per in the bins).

    Why are people buying vinyl for 2-4x the price of the same (or more) content of the digital/cd version?


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