How Discogs Can Help Your Offline Music Selling and Collecting Efforts

Shona

Discogs is far from being perfect; even still, it’s an invaluable website to any record collector or seller. Even if you never register and open an account on the site, you can still utilize the site to get important information regarding the value of your records.

To those who aren’t familiar with record collecting, especially vinyl collecting, the pricing of records may seem to make no sense whatsoever. To make it simple, record prices are ruled by supply and demand. Rare records are the most expensive. However many record vendors find a middle ground by being able to sell popular records at higher prices due to marketing/demand (for example, after Michael Jackson’s death, my uncle sold his records and CDs like hotcakes). Records where thousands, even millions of copies were pressed, that were made by bands and musicians that faded away from our collective memories can be practically given away.

As both a buyer and a seller of records, it can be tough to nail down exactly how much you should sell a record for or spend on a record. Discogs helps in this area immensely.

For sellers:

Let’s say you want to sell a record to someone. We’ll use The Beatles White Album as an example. Looking at the album’s specific page (make sure the format, label, release year, etc. are accurate {or very close to} what you are actually trying to sell), you can see that the median price that album has sold for on Discogs is $16. However people have it listed for as low as $7. 358 people have the album in their wantlist. Since the demand is fairly strong, yet so is the supply, you will most likely need to price the record a bit lower than the median in order to be competitive with other sellers.

*Note – you can only get pricing information on records that have been sold via the Discogs marketplace.

For buyers and collectors:

Many times, buyers can find better prices on records on Discogs than they will on eBay or individual record vendor websites. There is no auction function to drive up prices, and you have a lot of people on Discogs who sell records casually. So they don’t have the overhead of a real brick and mortar store, and many of them are music lovers, more interested is collecting a bartering more so than getting rich. When looking for a record, Discogs is usually the very first place I check. Even if I don’t buy the record on Discogs, I have a better idea of what I should be paying for an album.

If you do wish to go all out, open an account with Discogs, and enter in your entire music collection, Discogs has a great feature where you can see the “value” of your collection. See?

collection on discogs

Similar to individual releases, you will see the low-end value, the median, and then the high-end amount. Keep in mind that if you are looking to put a sticker price on your entire collection, go with the median and not the high-end number. The latter assumes that you’ll be selling each and every record in your collection at top dollar. That almost never happens!

There are a lot more benefits that Discogs can offer to anyone who is serious about collecting records, including unparalleled information regarding recordings. With that being said, it can be daunting to get started. It also doesn’t help that the Discogs community is less than helpful (this includes some sellers and buyers). But it’s a small price to pay for what you get in the end.

Author:
Real estate professional with an MBA in Marketing ~ writer and multiculturalist.