The soon to be released 2xLP by Dirty Beaches is back on top of the Midheaven top seller chart. The significance of that is that the sales of the top item on that list can be substantial, but underneath that first slot you are talking a maximum of a hundred units or so in that week. But for the top record it can be ALOT more then that. A couple of things I learned from when Haunted Hearts was near the top earlier this year is that every moment in that top 3 is fleeting- a specific record might only keep the top slot or 2-3 slot for a day and could drop to ten a week later. The other thing I learned is that if you have a top selling record, and you sell out of the stock you have on hand- that is that- the record will drop simply because there are no more records.
If you're talking about a record that had 1000 LP's pressed, and let's say it's in the top 10 and it's selling about 50-100 a week, so 200-400 a month. So no matter what- assuming the record continues to sell- the pressing will be done in two or three months and that is that: It's over.
What this means is that you need to be able to accurately forecast how many units people will want to buy in the initial sales month (and before with pre sales etc.) because if you make too few, you lose your opportunity to sell at the maximum level of consumer interest. Obviously, making too many is a different problem but not one that is the subject of this post.
Once the initial sales burst is completed, additional sales are a percentage of the sales figure from the initial sales period, so you want that first period of sales to as high as possible because it will impact the sales on month 2, 3 etc. In conclusion, if you have a record that is potentially going to be the top album on something like the Revolver top seller list, you need to make sure you have enough physical copies to sell, otherwise an opportunity will be lost. (MIDHEAVEN WEEKLY TOP SELLER LIST)