There are multitudes of sheet music and music gear retailers online, but perhaps none are as prolific as Music Room. This website is the proverbial Alexandria’s Library of sheet music. Musicroom.com is a great many people’s go-to distributor of songbooks, music exam material, and instruments. With fast-shipping goods at competitive prices, Music Room receives consistently good reviews from customers and remains top-dog in the UK.
In this article, we’re going to take a closer look at the Music Room website. We’ll attempt to discover just why they compete so well in the music market.
With that being said, stay tuned to discover everything you need to know about Music Room!
Music Room is an online retailer primarily dealing in sheet music but also has a huge collection of instruments and music accessories.
Established in 1995, the company expanded physically with 12 stores on UK high streets today. They were one of the first sheet music retailers in the country to bring their store online. They were aided in this endeavour by Hal Leanord, a well-established US-based company that has been distributing sheet music since 1947.
With a whopping 150,000 square foot warehouse storing over 300,000 products, Music Room is at the top of sheet music retailing in the UK.
Let’s run through the services that the Music Room website offers, and how they are useful to musicians!
As Music Room’s raison d’être, sheet music is the website’s main territory. You won’t find a larger selection of song books or exam material anywhere else on the internet!
Curated by a team made up of 90% musicians and supplied by Hal Leanord, Music Room is certainly reliable. You are able to choose sheet music books for over 70 different instruments, in hundreds of different series, and by thousands of different composers.
As the UK’s leading sheet music retailer, you can buy any composition collection that might wet your whistle; from the ‘Little Black Songbook of Bob Dylan’s Hits’, to ‘The Beatles for Marimba’. Digital downloads of all genres of sheet music are available for purchase too. Have a browse for yourself – the options seem genuinely endless.
While sheet music is the website’s primary product, you can also purchase Music Room accessories and instruments for your music room!
In fact, despite coming secondary to sheet music, the magnitude of Music Room’s selection of gear is just as mind-boggling. So much so that it becomes hard to see how 150,000 square feet of warehouse space is enough.
Unfortunately, there is no Music Room rental service, as other music equipment retailers sometimes offer; but considering gear takes a back seat behind sheet music here, we don’t particularly see that as a disadvantage. Regardless, selling everything from MIDI keyboards to drum kits, from brushes and capos to reeds and strings, Music Room maintains superiority in the sheer scale of its selection!
It’s a massive relief, then, that Music Room’s website features a very detailed search filter.
Wanting to find a specific product without it would be, no exaggeration, like finding a needle in a haystack.
While the website may appear a little dated in its aesthetic at first, that preconception doesn’t last long. Their search filtering is advanced, presenting the user with a great number of options to choose from; composer, arranger, instrument, instrumentation, year of publication, difficulty, genre – the list goes on!
And now we come to our personal favourite part of Music Room – their discounts!
Across the entire site, educators, those aged 16-24, and seniors are entitled to a 10% discount on any product. Plus, the details of these discounts aren’t hidden behind a veritable jungle of links and redirections. No, they are simply advertised on the website’s home page, free and instant to use!
This is partly why Music Room has become so successful in their sheet music venture. They understand the importance of music lessons across all walks of life, and actively work to do so. Offering educators a site-wide discount is a fantastic policy, and evidence shows that Music Room isn’t just in it for profit.
Musicroom.com is a pretty standard online retailer website. Even if you’ve only ever browsed Amazon, you’ll be able to work your way around Music Room.
As aforementioned, the website’s aesthetic and user experience is a little bit dated, and at times crowded. That, however, is our only criticism of the website itself, and it’s a nitpicking one at that! Its actual functions are fantastic, such as the aforementioned search filtering, and clear-cut product categories with comprehensive drop-down menus. Anyone will be easily able to find the products they are looking for!
We have already discussed the great discounts on offer 24/7 at Music Room – but what about the product prices themselves?
Rest assured, the discounts aren’t covering for a rip-off. You’ll be pleased to hear that, broadly speaking, Music Room’s prices are competitive, matching – and sometimes besting – the prices of the same products on Amazon, and other sheet music/music gear retailers.
One of the most common factors cited in Music Room’s consistently highly-rated reviews (an average of 4.7 out of 5 stars on Trustpilot – that’s really good) is their service. Not only do they host very decent prices, but they are also renowned for their fast delivery, secure packaging and responsiveness. To put it succinctly: there’s a lot of bang for your buck.
Let’s take a look at three alternative websites to Music Room, and see how they fare against each other.
Proud of their impressive heritage, Forsyth is a massive general music shop located in central Manchester, dating back to 1857.
Much like Music Room, Forsyth deals in all kinds of musical instruments and merchandise, but also specialises in the retailing of sheet music. Boasting over 100,000 titles, their catalogue is massive – but perhaps not as gargantuan as Music Room’s.
While Forsyth is more stylised than it’s competitor’s website, their search and filter functions unfortunately aren’t as detailed. Plus, the default item-sorting method is set as ‘highest price first’, meaning that all website users are immediately presented with sheet music that costs upwards of £1000! This is likely just an oversight on the website designer’s part – but it does come across as a little cheeky.
Another sheet music retailer that loves its vintage aesthetic, Boosey & Hawkes specialises in classical music. Nevertheless, they still stock that immense catalogue of all-genre booklets that seems to be typical of online sheet music shops.
Functionally operating very similarly to both Music Room and Forsyth, you might wonder what the difference actually is aside from purely website design aesthetic – to answer that, we direct you to Trustpilot!
Compared with 89% five-star Music Room reviews across over 3,600 entries, Boosey & Hawkes’ average lies at two and a half stars. Reviews of their website consistently cite a major issue where items will be displayed as in-stock and are able to be purchased, only for the customer to be informed after weeks of no delivery that the item wasn’t in-stock in the first place.
It might be best to stick with Music Room until that bug gets fixed!
Perhaps the most underrated sheet music retailer that we’ll discuss today, Presto seems to be Music Room’s best competition in terms of quality of service!
Showcasing – once again – a humongous selection of sheet music and exam material to peruse, Presto receive praise for their fast shipping times, packaging quality, and communication with customers.
Presto Music’s main speciality is their selling of classic music – both in physical and digital form. This means that, while they offer a great service, their sheet music venture takes a bit of a back seat. Music Room’s priority is sheet music, and thus their search and filter functions are yet unbeaten, even by another fantastic service such as Presto.
Nevertheless, if you’re unable to find a specific booklet on either website, your first port of call should be to try the other!
All in all, there remains no doubt as to why Music Room is the UK’s – and elsewhere’s – biggest sheet music retailer. While most of these shops seem to benefit from the phenomenon of access to inconceivable amounts of sheet music, it is Music Room that offers those cherries on top that make their website so successful.
From their in-depth, highly-customisable search and filtering feature, to their consistently fast shipping times and packaging quality, to the site-wide discounts for educators, students and seniors, Music Room have built up a fantastic reputation that speaks to their quality.
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