Stock Music Market Size, Share, Trends Analysis Report by Product (Tracks and Sound Effects); License (Royalty Free and Licensed Music); End-user (Large Businesses, SMEs, and Individual Content Creators); and Geography (APAC, North America, Europe, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa); Industry Analysis Report, Regional Outlook, Growth Opportunities, Price Trends, Competitive Market Share & Forecast, 2021–2026

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Most Exhaustive Report

244 Pages

82 Tables

80 Charts

5 Regions

16 Countries

28 Companies

4 Market Segment


Report Attribute Details
Market Size (Revenue) USD 2 BILLION (2026)
CAGR 10% (2020–2026)
Base Year 2020
Forecast Year 2021–2026
Market Segments Product (Tracks and Sound Effects); License (Royalty Free and Licensed Music); End-user (Large Businesses, SMEs, and Individual Content Creators)
Geographic Analysis North America, Europe, APAC, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa
Countries Covered US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, China, Japan, India, South Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, UAE, and South Africa


The global stock music market size to reach USD 2 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of over 10% during the period 2020-2026. The stock music market is observing a flurry of approaches. Platform integration is one such approach that is increasingly being witnessed across the market. It puts all the control in the hands of the creator, helping in reducing costs of having to source content from outside, and ridding users of the trouble resulting from coming to a grinding halt due to dependency and delays. Such moves create more opportunities to expand the distribution base while increasing the affinity in the market. Platform integration is becoming an important tool that provides an intuitive search experience, facilitating easier and faster utilization of stock music through the integration of music libraries across applications. Simply by providing them in-program, users are saved from the added hassle of leaving their workspace, thereby enabling them to generate products through seamless utilization of their resources.  


  • North America is expected to lead the stock music market share due to high attraction toward individual music production and content creation.
  • Growth in digital marketing and a rise in the number of individual internet users are expected to propel the market for individual content creators during the forecast period.
  • The UK and Germany are witnessing high traction for the podcast ecosystem and represent a growing quantity of content.
  • License stock music is projected to witness incremental growth of over $95 million during the forecast period in Europe.
  • The sound-effect stock music market is expected to record an absolute growth of over 77% by 2026 due to the rise in video games and small-scale content creation.
  • Owing to the growth in independent content creation, the demand for royalty-free and licensed music is likely to spur during the forecast period.


 This research report provides a detailed segmentation by

  • Product Type
  • License
  • End-user
  • Geography


The growing demand for podcasts and the rise in the audio-based user experience are expected to boost the track-based stock music market growth. The market is expected to grow higher in North America and APAC with projected incremental revenue of over USD 348 million and USD 135 million respectively by 2026. As emerging business models harmonize quality and price, genuine composers are re-entering the field and raising the standard of the industry, thereby driving the demand for stock tracks.

With sound engineers increasingly pulling a fast one on audiences’ ears as imaginatively as they possibly can, the demand for sound effects is growing. This trend has been catapulted by theatrical shows such as Stomp, which has witnessed tons of adaptations, specifically in movie trailers for blockbusters and action films. As sound effects are going beyond the traditional boundaries and creeping into other, relatively lesser prominent ends of the spectrum in the sound effects industry, i.e., music videos, the market prospects seem bright. Creative storytelling is picking up with videos and artists beginning to feature uniquely textured sounds in their music. 


Consistency, in terms of standards, has driven the demand for licensed music and is expected to continue over the next few years. High curation standards have led to the music that is largely cinematic and emotion-based as opposed to flat, thereby driving the market at a rapid pace. There is a shift in the focus from royalty-free to licensed music as the latter’s quality, appeal, feel, and authenticity is objectively better than the former. Further, there has been some progress and innovation in the music licensing segment.

The royalty-free segment has made forward strides in terms of foundation – with quality and value, the licensed segment has truly transformed itself. However, with both having a sizeable audience to cater to, the prospects are bright during the forecast period. Royalty-free license models have widely been used in recent years; however, somewhere in the middle, the music gained a bad repute for being dated cheesy and lacking in quality. Technological advancements have armed modern composers with more tools at his disposal, hence royalty-free music has come a long way. With a lot of music witnessing YouTube strikes and creators facing violations, royalty-free music is providing safer avenues and scope for growth. However, lack of satisfaction, and dwindling customer loyalty are the major challenges faced by the market. 


The growing demand for improving movie experience is expected to boost the market for large business stock music, which is likely to grow at a CAGR of over 10% between 2020 and 2026. There is a shift in the consumption preference of digital content from passive, video-based to audio-based content. This has resulted a change from “look and feel” to “listen and feel,” which has fostered the use of audio branding where consumers can easily identify with the brand. Directional audio is becoming a trend driving the demand for sound effects as major retailers bank on audio to improve time spent in-store and drive preference over e-commerce.

In countries such as India and China, SMEs are growing at a rapid pace. The growth of online radio services has fueled small business advertising via audio channels since it has offered reliability by allowing tracking and targeting. This bodes well for the growth of the market during the forecast period. Businesses with smaller budgets and fewer resources in place are exploring other content forms that are likely to become more popular. As SMEs are engaged more in new marketing practices as compared to larger firms, they are more likely to explore innovative forms of marketing to push their product or service forward. Thus, utilizing audio as part of their branding will further drive the stock music usage. 


North America is expected to witness absolute growth of over 80% for the individual content creator segment from 2020 to 2026. North America’s abandonment of print channels is the fastest, with social platforms coming to the forefront, leading to the creation of dynamic content that appeals to more than the sense of sight. North America is the second-largest market for games across the globe. It, however, has the largest concentration of game development companies, with the US leading and Canada leading the place. The advent of digital technology, specifically plugins that have helped ease out the processing of Foley. Hence, the market is expected to witness competition for sound effects. On the contrary, there is a higher likelihood of these sounds being packaged and offered via a library, increasing the availability of inventory in the market.


Envato, Entertainment One (eOne), Getty Images, Musicbed, and Shutterstock are the five key vendors that dominate the market. Several vendors have a global presence and have, therefore, created strong brand images for their products. Also, there are several small and large vendors that are altering the stock music business by new approaches and models such as subscription-only. All-you-can-eat subscriptions are meant to drive volume and consequently, revenue growth. While some players offer only royalty-free stock music, others are offering both royalty-free and custom services.

The global stock music market research report includes in-depth coverage of the industry analysis with revenue and forecast insights for the following segments:


  • Tracks
  • Sound Effects


  • Royalty Free
  • Licensed Music


  • Large Businesses
  • SMEs
  • Individual Content Creators


  • North America
    • US
    • Canada
  • Europe
    • UK
    • Germany
    • France
    • Italy
    • Spain
  • APAC
    • China
    • Japan
    • South Korea
    • India
  • Latin America
    • Brazil
    • Mexico
    • Argentina
  • Middle East & Africa
    • UAE
    • South Africa

Frequently Asked Questions

The stock music industry faced several challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic as music festivals and concerts were cancelled. In addition, according to the UK music survey, around 65% of music creator’s income was lost in 2020.
Rise of Independent Content Creators, Growing Popularity of Sound Design-First Approach, and Growth of Platform Integration are some of the trends and drivers influencing the market growth.
The global stock music market is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 10% during the period 2020¬2026.
In terms of end-users, large businesses are expected to contribute the highest revenue for the global stock music market.
Envato, Entertainment One (eOne), Getty Images, Musicbed, and Shutterstock are the major players in the stock music industry.
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