Every musician, professional or amateur knows the joy and the struggle of recording a track.
It’s all about making it sound nothing less but perfect.
Choosing the right way to sell your music is somewhat similar to finally getting that track cut—it’s about finding the perfect fit for you.
Read on and you’ll learn why it’s important to have your own website to sell music, how to build one (quick and easy), as well as get some tips on how to skyrocket your music sales.
There’s a lot of ground to cover, so let’s dive in right away.
Why should you sell from your website?
Today, when streaming rules the music industry, it would seem pretty obvious to move in that direction—I’ll admit that there’s some truth to that.
The vast majority of people these days prefer to listen to their favorite tunes on the most popular streaming platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, Google Play, and Amazon Music. Especially now, when the COVID-19 outbreak has massively contributed to shaping the future of music streaming.
It means that making your music available for streaming is essential to reach your current fans, as well as expand your audience and bring you some recognition.
But the real question is:
How much money can you really earn on music streaming?
To answer this question we must look into the full breakdown of how many streams it takes to actually earn a dollar on various platforms:
As you can see, the chances of getting big payouts from streaming services are quite low. Even though the situation might change in the future, we still have a long way to go before streaming revenue replaces the money that artists used to make selling physical albums.
While music streaming platforms can put you on the map as an artist, it’s more important than ever to have your own online space for selling music directly to the fans who are willing to truly support you.
So, let me be blunt with you—if you want to sell music online, you need your own website. Here’s why:
- You have total control over the selling process;
- You can keep the profit without having to share with a streaming platform, distributor, or any other middleman;
- You get a space to showcase your brand’s unique personality;
- You can sell music and merch (both physical and digital) directly to your fans;
- You can sell all kinds of digital downloads from your website, like beats, samples, music lessons, etc.;
- You own your data. With every purchase, you collect your customer’s details, like email addresses. It allow s you to build your email list, and keep in touch with them when you release new music.
But don’t get me wrong:
Even though having a website is crucial, it doesn’t mean that you should neglect an opportunity to bring more attention or earn extra cash, whether it’s through music distribution, major streaming platforms, or making your music available elsewhere. All’s fair in love and war.
How to sell music or MP3s from your website using Sellfy?
Building a website from scratch seems like a lot of work, but it doesn’t have to be.
There’s a solution that can help you navigate the bigger chunk of the work in no time. Sellfy is a great solution for everyone who wants to sell music online but doesn’t like complicated setups.
Anyone who has internet access and a few minutes of time can build a store on Sellfy.
Step 1: Set up an account.
When you start using Sellfy, all you need is a valid email address. Just choose a subscription plan or start with a 14-day free trial to give it a try and see if it’s a fit for you.
Step 2: Upload your music.
Once you have your account and your email address verified, you can start adding your music (or any other type of product). Just go to the Products section on your Dashboard, then to Digital products, and click on Add new product.
Upload your songs, albums, beats, samples, music video-lessons, or whatever you want to sell. Add product images and some info in the Product description section, so that your customers know what exactly they’re buying. Once you’re finished, hit Save product, and it’s done!
Step 3: Customize your store.
Naturally, since you’re creating your own store you’ll also want to make it look unique. You can easily do that by browsing through the visual editor. Make the appearance of your store match your brand so that it looks exactly the way YOU want it to.
You can customize everything—from text color to the shape of Buy now buttons. You can also choose the layout style of your store page, the number of products per page, and oh-so-much more.
That’s it! Your product is now available for sale.
Step 4: Add payment options.
Now, before you start promoting your listing, you must first make sure that you can actually get paid for your products.
With Sellfy, you’ll be able to easily accept payments from all over the world in a variety of currencies. There are two options available: PayPal and Stripe (for card payments.)
- To accept payments through PayPal, just go to Payment options and type in the email address you use for PayPal.
- To accept card payments, you’ll need to have a Stripe account first, and then connect it to your Sellfy store. You can find out more about how to create a Stripe account and get API keys for your Sellfy shop here.
Bonus: How to skyrocket your music sales
1. Add links to your SoundCloud profile
Without a doubt, SoundCloud is a world champion in free music streaming. Especially if you like the idea of fans and fellow musicians sharing their opinion about your music.
SoundCloud is one of the biggest music hosting platforms and has become an industry standard. With its huge user base (70+ million users) and over 175 million monthly unique visitors, it’s a great place to host your music and build a community.
The service has a subtle design and you’ll find it very user-friendly. You’ll not only be able to share and monetize your music, but you’ll also be able to get access to statistics on your plays, likes, comments, downloads, and other useful features.
Here are some tips on how to sell your music on SoundCloud.
It all comes down to persuading your fans to actually buy from you. There are three different ways to do that:
- Placing the link in your bio
- Placing a buy link
- Linking separate tracks in the track description
Coal Harrison aka The Kount is a successful instrumentalist and a beatmaker with 25k+ followers on SoundCloud.
He does an amazing job of promoting his Sellfy store by heavily linking it to his SoundCloud page, thus boosting his music sales.
You can get more useful tips on how to make money on SoundCloud in this article.
2. Add links to YouTube
YouTube gives you another incredible opportunity to promote your music and drive more sales.
Well, you can’t exactly sell anything directly from your YouTube channel. But, what you can do is get people interested in your product by creating quality content and driving traffic to your site.
Today, we won’t talk about creating compelling videos (there’s a ton of resources out there on creating great video content). We’ll stick to the technical implementation of driving traffic to your online store, which is an art form all on its own.
Just take a look at the way faraitheproducer takes advantage of his YouTube channel. On an example of his YouTube channel we can actually see how he drives traffic to his store by placing:
- Links in description
- Custom link on profile banners
- YouTube end screen
You can learn more about the ways to promote your music on YouTube here.
3. Pay-what-you-want pricing
Offering some of your freshest arrivals with the pay-what-you-want pricing model is another way to promote your music. Of course, there will always be people that will take advantage of that model without giving you anything back. But, you’ll also get some hardcore fans who are ready to pay more—so let them!
By the way, there’s a pay-what-you-want pricing feature available in every Sellfy store. You can easily let your fans buy your music on their own terms and even set a minimum price.
Everyone wants to make as much money as possible.
However, trying to persuade your customers to choose a more expensive option so you can make more money is simply unethical. It’s, of course, not the same thing as making your customers choose the more expensive option because YOU personally believe they’ll be happy about it.
That’s what upselling is for.
It’s up to you to offer an upgrade to an existing product, but it’s up to your customers to decide if they actually want to buy it.
So what is upselling and how can it help you boost your sales?
Upselling is a sales tactic where the customer is persuaded to buy an additional item to the one already in their cart. For example, if a customer buys one single from your album, you can offer to buy another one from the same album (or the whole album).
The most basic and effective upsell involves offering an additional product as soon as they add one to the cart.
Studies show that upselling (selling additional products to existing customers) works in 60-70% of cases.
It’s definitely worth a try.
If you’re looking for some more info on how you can use the built-in upselling feature in your Sellfy store, you should check out this article.
5. Email marketing
Yes, it might sound a bit old school, but driving sales through your email list can be very powerful. You can use it as an effective way to promote your brand, announce new releases, tour dates, merch, music videos, and other important news.
Emails give you direct access to your audience, which isn’t always possible to reach through social media. There you’re always fighting for the attention of your follower against hundreds of other accounts they’re following.
At the same time, most people check and read their email every day. If they’ve opted into your list, whether it’s to receive news or to download your music, there’s a pretty good chance they would also welcome an opportunity to support you again.
So I strongly suggest that you start building your email list as soon as possible.
One of the easiest ways to do it is to ask for an email address in exchange for an exclusive incentive, such as a free music download, discount on merch, access to early releases, or anything else you feel your audience might find attractive.
And, of course, you absolutely should announce your newest release through a dedicated email blast sent to your fan list.
With Sellfy, you won’t have to look for any external services—there’s a great email marketing tool available right in your store’s dashboard.
You can take full advantage of it and send custom emails with links, product announcements, and updates to your selected audience. You can also target specific product buyers or send emails to all buyers and subscribers.
It’s great to have so many opportunities at hand to help you promote and sell your music. But the key here is to find a careful balance so you don’t overwhelm your audience with the relentless promotion of your music.
Keep on working to find interesting angles to present your work and improve your marketing strategy. If you stick to a plan and stay consistent, it’ll strengthen the relationship with your fans, drive more sales, and earn you enough money to keep on creating music.
Aleksey is a Content Marketing Specialist at Sellfy. He loves using language and the power of words to make even the driest eCommerce topics fascinating. Using his degree in literary studies and passion for the latest trends, he creates well-researched and structured content to inspire other people and help them grow their eCommerce business.