Vinyl record retailers are finally getting some good news: Amazon has announced it will begin restocking stocking discretionary items, including vinyl records.
Last month, as the coronavirus crisis worsened, Amazon ceased stocking “non-essential items” from third-party sellers in order to fulfill the increased demand for hand sanitizer, face masks, toilet paper, and medical supplies.
Now, according to The Wall Street Journal, Amazon is ready to begin re-stocking discretionary items, albeit in “limited” quantities. “Later this week, we will allow more products into our fulfillment centers,” an Amazon spokeswoman told the WSJ. “Products will be limited by quantity to enable us to continue prioritizing products and protecting employees, while also ensuring most selling partners can ship goods into our facilities.”
Additionally, Amazon has announced the hiring of 75,000 new employees to go along with the 100,000 workers it added last month. The online retailer says the expanded workforce will allow it to fulfill orders of discretionary items while also improving its shipping speeds. Since the COVID-19 outbreak, subscribers of the normally speedy Amazon Prime delivery service have endured lengthy waits for their items as the retailer struggled to keep up with increased demand.
All of this is good news for vinyl record retailers who sell their product on Amazon. With most record stores shuttered due to stay-at-home orders, retailers are relying almost exclusively on digital orders to stay afloat. After Amazon paused the shipping of “non-essential items” last month, the music industry experienced its worst sales week in history.