Scrapbooking is one of the largest categories within the craft and hobby industry and now considered[by whom?] to be the third most popular craft in the nation. From 1996 through 2004, sales of scrapbooking products increased across the United States. In 2005, annual sales flattened for the first time after many back to back years of double growth. From 2006 through 2010 traditional scrapbooking sales have declined, while digital forms of scrapbooking have grown. Traditional scrapbooking sales for 2010 have declined to about $1.6 billion in annual sales from a peak of about $2.5 billion in 2005.
The most important scrapbooking supply is the album itself, which can be permanently bound, or allow for the insertion of pages. There are other formats such as mini albums and accordion-style fold-out albums. Some of these are adhered to various containers, such as matchbooks, CD cases, or other small holders. When scrap artists started moving away from the "page" and onto alternative surfaces and objectives, they termed these creations "altered items" or now simply called "off-the-page". This movement circles back to the history of art from the 1960s when Louise Nevelson was doing "Assemblages" with found objects and recycled parts.
Early digital scrapbooks were created from digital photos uploaded to an external site. Over time, this moved to a model of downloading software onto a personal computer that will organize photos and help create the digital scrapbook. With the growth of Web 2.0 functionality, digital scrapbooking is going back online, to avoid the hassles of having to download and install PC software. The availability of cheap online storage (e.g., on Amazon's S3 service), and the desire to leverage pre-uploaded online albums (e.g., on Yahoo's Flickr) make it more convenient for users to directly compose their digital scrapbooks online. Print on demand fulfillment enables such digital scrapbooks to effectively supplant traditional scrapbooks.
During the 19th century, scrapbooking was seen as a more involved way to preserve one’s experiences than journaling or other writing-based forms of logging. Printed material such as cheap newspapers, visiting cards, playbills, and pamphlets circulated widely during the 19th century and often became the primary components of peoples’ scrapbooks. The growing volume of ephemera of this kind, parallel to the growth of industrialized society, created a demand for methods of cataloguing and preserving them. This is why scrapbooks devoted solely to cataloguing recipes, coupons, or other lists were also common during this time. Until later in the 19th century, scrapbooks were seen as functional as well as aesthetically pleasing. Several factors, including marketing strategies and technological advancement, contributed to the image of scrapbooking moving further toward the aesthetic plane over the years.