Now You Make More Money When You Sell MP3s on

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CD Baby's Lower Commission on Digital Sales

CD Baby’s mission has always been to help you earn the most money from your music. Towards that end, I’m excited to announce that we’ll be lowering the admin fee we take of MP3 sales on from 25% to 9% — lower than any other digital music retailer out there.

And that lower rate holds true for all our direct-to-fan sales tools, including CD Baby’s MusicStore for Facebook, our HTML Music Store Widget, and our custom Linkmaker

It’s simple: you make more money when you sell your music through CD Baby.

When you sell an album download for $9.99 You Make
On CD Baby $9.09
On BandCamp $8.49 to $8.99
On a traditional download store like iTunes or Amazon $6.37*

*After CD Baby’s 9% admin fee

Regardless of how or where you want to sell your music, we’ve got you covered: digital distribution to iTunes, Spotify, and others, online retail sales on, sales through Facebook or your own web site. And now we take the same tiny 9% admin fee regardless of how you sell! Why? Because we feel we’re the best place for artists to get their music to a worldwide market. And, frankly, we hope you’ll think of us first for all your new releases.

Make it your New Year’s resolution to direct your fans to CD Baby, one convenient place where they can purchase CDs, vinyl, and MP3s — and where you’ll make the most money!

Brian Felsen
Brian Felsen
CD Baby President

P.S. Did I mention nobody gets you into more stores than CD Baby? All the big digital stores, like iTunes, Amazon, Spotify, Rhapsody, Xbox Music & many more. Plus you get access to over 15,000 record stores to sell your CDs, through our partnership with Alliance Distribution and Super D. So give us a try today!

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  • Hey Linda, thanks for talking up CD Baby. We always like to remind folks that:

    a) We don't have yearly fees — so we only make money when you do, and you can feel secure leaving your music up for sale until the end of time, even if it's not selling, without us hounding you for an annual fee.

    b) we don't just get you onto a few sites; we distribute to iTunes, Spotify, GooglePlay, Amazon, Rhapsody, Rdio, Xbox, Muve, and so many more.

    c) for the same one-time fee, you get worldwide digital distribution, global physical distribution in over 15,000 record stores, CD/vinyl/MP3 sales on,inclusion in our sync licensing program, and direct-to-fan sales solutions like our MusicStore for Facebook, HTML Music Store widget, etc.

    d) we've got the coolest customer and artist service team around — and you can actually reach them by phone.

    e) we've been around for almost 15 years now, and we're not going anywhere. The same can't be said for many music biz startups.

    • I’ve always agreed with you Chris, but what was the bull about the overstock? I wrote a post on FB about that i’ll share.

      To anyone who has their CDs with CDBaby:

      They are now instigating a ‘Purge’ of thier low selling CDs.
      That’s fine, they must have alot of them.

      Unfortunately, they’re asking for the seller to pay to have them returned.
      So that means your paying for postage to send the CDs to them in the first place [which they ask you to send 5 everytime you ad a new title] AND you’re paying to have them returned.
      That wouldn’t be so bad if it were not for the fact as soon as someone orders that particular CD they sent back, you’re going to have to pay a third round of postage to send it back to CDBaby.
      That is ridiculous.
      …and costly.

  • You don’t need to publish this, but there is a place now trying to beat your time. It’s called Fandalism. $19.99 for unlimited uploads to Itunes, Spotify and so forth.
    But As usual people will not read $19.99 per year. I defended CD Baby on a thread about it trying to point that out and got beat up.

  • Good news, only the thing why i don’t go with CDBaby is a lack of HTML5 widget. Bandcamp has it and it makes real difference. A lot of people browsing from iDevices. I also checked: your widget doesn’t work on my new android phone. When you plan to do that?

    • I also agree that CDBaby needs to switch the flash based widget to an HTML5 widget. Mobile devices are widely used now, and currently that flash based widget just shows up as a blank box on my website, which honestly isn’t that awesome. When can we see the conversion to an HTML5 widget?

  • jmtroberts

    This is great news! CD Baby is a powerhouse… Thanks guys.

  • A comment I also posted on Hypebot is that CDBaby should entertain the idea of offering FLAC and similar hi fidelity formats for fans who buy our music.

    I do like the fact that CDBaby allows a bit greater control over distribution of our music regarding streaming or free downloads, compared to BandCamp, as an example. Given there are no monthly/yearly fees, I believe that CDBaby is the best place for an independent artist to thrive.

  • Esta es una muy buena noticia. Gracias cdbaby por apoyar a los artistas independientes. Sigamos haciendo música !!!

  • Jim Nephin

    Cdbaby is by far the best place on the net for DIY bands.Ive been with you since 2004 & ive never had any issues.Every band I talk to I always tell them to get on CDbaby.Also due to rising postage costs I now make more from a CDbaby sale than I do from direct to fan sale via my own site.This of course means less time in the post office 🙂 .I think it would be cool if you expanded to include tshirt sales maybe set up a deal with a screen printing company so many shirts for a flat fee etc

  • Hey Sam, hopefully soon — but I don't have a more specific ETA. We're working on it, though.

  • Absolutely.

  • Hey V, we understand the frustration that can be caused by a request to have your work sent back at your expense, but I have to point out a few key things that you may be overlooking.

    First off, in our effort to maintain the original promise to CD Baby artists made by Derek Sivers, CD Baby's founder, we will always retain a copy of your album in our warehouse no matter what happens.

    Second, in our effort to provide our artists, who are operating on an independent level, the best deal possible, we do not charge annual account fees, warehouse fees, restocking fees, or any other excess fees that are typically associated with other companies such as Amazon.

    We also do not charge a lot of the annual fees that many other music distribution companies charge their clients. We are not looking to shake the pennies from your pocket. Asking artists to cover the shipping for their own stock is one of the ways we are able to make sure that you are not paying more than you need to pay.

    Ultimately, we work with 350,000 artists, many of whom have more than one release. We keep enough stock on hand to manage 6 months of sales. In the beginning we have no sales data, so 5 is a modest and safe amount to start with; however, if the album doesn't sell, then that initial stock will be considered overstock. The amount of copies determined as overstock may not seem like a lot at first glance, but when you put it into perspective with the bigger picture, you will see why we can't hold onto any excess material that isn't selling no matter what the overstock quantity is. No processing fees or any other warehouse related fees, we are only asking that you cover the shipping of your albums.

    The other option is of course recycling, which makes all of us here at CD Baby cringe to think about. We would much rather see them get home safe!

    • Possibly CDBaby should change the number of initial CDs sent to CDBaby from 5 to 1. Especially for CDBaby artists with no prior sales history.

  • No ETA. Still working on it.

  • Hi there, I'm relatively new to cdbby but I'm blown away by its efficiency and caring nature. Maybe you guys can do something on teh merchandize front like you do with physical cds.

    • We've toyed with the idea from time to time, but no major plans yet. Hopefully one day.

    • Oh, and thanks so much. Glad we can help you distribute your music!

  • Boise Queen

    The problem I’ve been having that have faced a lot of other musicians is that listeners prefer to remain ..”just that”…listeners! As long as its ‘free” they’ll continue to stream. In fact; many won’t even bother with the free access to downloading tracks. They treat the few free tracks that my webpage hosts as if its”an internet radio”. They’ll log, listen to what they want and leave.,never purchasing anything.
    Another thing is “genre”. I’m offering contemporary classical music in my first CD. Most of the ads I’ve seen that market competitive sales advantages to independent artist’s attract genre’s that are much more popular than the one I’m in. I would like to see ads that outline marketing and sales strategies that indies encompassing my particular genre can use online to increase CD sales as well as to”target market” a greater share of interest from potential listening support audience’s.
    Thats the bottom line.

  • c d baby is just a place for people to buy music, once the customer is on c d baby,
    there lost in sea of thousands of artist, and looking for your music would be like finding a
    needle in a hay stack, to be candid, without a recording contract, you’re being ripped off.
    if you cant get your music played on real radio stations (not internet radio)
    you’re not going to make it.
    what c d baby should do is get your music on real radio stations, and refrain from such deplorable chicanery, stop ripping people off leaving them with the onus of a lot of work if they desire to be a paragon in the music industry.
    what’s the use getting your music on iTunes if they don’t know who you are,
    you need to have a ubiquitous presence on radio stations!
    and I suggest selling your own music in concerts.

    anyone dare to respond to this comment, can reach me at
    from Earl.

  • Earl, CD Baby is a digital and physical music distributor. We're not promoters, and especially not radio promoters. The kind of blanket, commercial radio promotion campaign you're talking about costs tens of thousands of dollars. (Impossible to do for all 500k artists who work with us — and if we did, the efforts would be rendered meaningless anyway, simply through the sheer volume of artists we'd be promoting at once).

    That being said, commercial radio is yesterday's news. Artists are "breaking" and making careers for themselves without ever being played on commercial radio. We work with tons of musicians who are subverting that system, going around the old gatekeepers (and cozying up to the new), touring without label support, selling records without major label distro, and they're doing quite well.

    "The onus of a lot of work" DOES fall on the artist, though — or at least the artist's team if they're lucky enough to have assembled one (manager, band, label, publicist, booking agent, etc.) Our job is to simplify the artists' lives, to take care of the complicated busy-work (distribution, publishing royalty collection, sync licensing, etc.) so they'll have more time to… keep working hard.


  • You mean CD Baby prints your CD (thru DiscMakers), ships them to you, then you ship them 5 copies back? I'm sorry, that's some real backwoods nonsense! Why not just print on demand and forget all the warehousing?

    • We warehouse CDs by artists who've used any number of disc manufacturing services, not just our own.

      • Christopher, Thanks for your reply. Are there any plans at CD Baby for offering print on demand?

        • We've definitely entertained that idea, but no current plans. We do offer small run printings–if you just want to do 50 or 100, etc.

  • We are working on making higher quality formats available soon. Stay tuned!