GamesIndustry.biz cites a new report that predicts online game sales will become the dominant force in the market by 2013 through individual websites, retailers like Amazon.com, and video game distributors like Steam. A DFC Intelligence analyst noted that boxed game sales already peaked in 2008, and that as physical game sales slowly decline, online sales will pick up at a marked pace. DFC is a research and consulting firm that covers the field of video games.
Last year, online game retailers sold over $19.3 billion worth of digital merchandise -- a figure that's expected to rise to $37.9 billion by 2016. While real-world stores have much to worry about as the market shifts in the direction of online sales, the industry as a whole is expected to continue to substantially increase its growth over the next half-decade. One of the "key drivers" for that growth is PC games.
The analysts also predicted that in-game advertising will increase two-fold in the next few years as advertisers realize the potential for this blossoming market.