Wallmart: Mass Merchant Enthusiasm For Music Products Wanes

June 28, 2009

From http://www.musictrades.com

…the toy department to display musical instruments and accessories. The selection will include a child-sized acoustic guitar, a full-sized electric and acoustic guitar, and a small selection of accessories. At the trend’s peak in 2006, musical instrument displays in Wal-Mart occupied 16 feet of shelf space with more than 35 discrete items. Arch competitor Target has similarly reduced its musical instrument display to six linear feet from a peak of 16 feet last year. Some of the reductions can be attributed to the current recession. However, one rep who sells to Wal-Mart noted, “They are driven by numerical analysis. The reduction in display space reflects the fact that musical instruments didn’t generate the turn they were looking for.”

The era of MI products moving to the mass market may be weaning and is this good or bad?  The Walmarkts, Targets, and Best Buys of the world may have taken the low end / entry section of the market away from the tradtaionl MI dealers but it also brought millions of new players intot he market many of whom eventualy will graduate to better instruments and products that will drive more traffic to the speciality channel.