Vinyl Record Sales Growth
Vinyl records are in high demand in 2013. According to stats released by Nielsen Soundscan and Discogs, sales of vinyl records have increased by 360% from 2006 to 2012 in markets tracked by Nielsen Soundscan, and more than 665% in the Discogs Marketplace.
Grading Vinyl Records
The condition of your records will greatly influence their value. No matter how scarce your records are, they‘re of no value to anyone if they‘re not enjoyable to listen to.
There are two different types of grading that should go into making an accurate grade: play grading and visual grading.
For play grading, you‘ll need to listen closely to the sound of the record, preferably the entire thing. It‘s recommended that you use different systems at first to help determine which setup produces the most accurate representation of the sound to best determine issues like needle wear, scratches, bubbles, bits of paper or other defects in the vinyl. Putting the record on a turntable is also a good method of discovering subtle warping or bubbling from heat damage.
For visual grading it‘s best to use a higher lumen light source a short distance away from the record itself. Halogen and direct natural sunlight work best for this. Defects that may seem trivial or invisible on lower wattage lights will become more prevalent under stronger lighting. Find a solution that works best for you.
The best teacher of grading ultimately is experience. If you can find someone who is experienced in grading who is willing to show you the ropes and help teach you, go for it. You can also find help from other sellers in the Discogs Marketplace Help Forum.
How Much Are My Vinyl Records Worth?
Once you‘ve accurately graded the condition of your record, and identified the exact version you own, you can determine the value of your records. Look at what other sellers are asking for the same version of the record you want to sell, in the same condition. You can also find historical sales data on Discogs, which only includes orders where the seller actually received payment from the buyer. Other resources for sales history are Popsike or CollectorsFrenzy, which offer sales data from eBay, but may include orders where the seller didn‘t receive payment for the order.