Links to the iTunes store now default to Apple Music, but there’s still a way to send fans directly to iTunes

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iTunes and Apple Music links

You may have already discovered that some of the existing links to your music on the iTunes store now open up Apple Music as the default. If you hadn’t, go to your website now and click on the links to iTunes; see what happens.

Depending on the user and the circumstance, it’s possible that those old links will open the web version of iTunes (not opening the iTunes store within the iTunes player) on your computer. At least that’s what happens on my desktop when I click the iTunes link from my website. But if I click the same exact link on my iPhone… Apple Music. 

Anyway, as far as I’m concerned that’s all well and good. The two services are meant to live side-by-side as easy companions. Want to listen? Apple Music. Want to buy? iTunes. Both options are available from the same general location.

But it might also be wise to direct your fans to the EXACT location they want to be (especially if your music is not up for streaming on Apple Music). In that case, it’s still possible to make sure they end up on iTunes instead of Apple Music. Here’s how:

1. Go to Apple’s Link Maker tool.

2. Search for your artist name, album title, or single.

3. Select the link from the six options provided (including badges and text links for both iTunes and Apple Music).

4. Copy the code and head over to your website to paste/embed.

I’ve seen some other articles on this subject that offer good advice regarding messaging, and the main point is this: if you’re using text links, be sure to set up the appropriate expectation.

For instance, use:

* “Listen on Apple Music” or “Play on Apple Music” or “Hear on Apple Music” (instead of “stream”)

* use “Buy” or “Purchase” for iTunes

What’s your experience been like with Apple Music so far, either as an artist promoting your music or as a listener? Let me know in the comments below.

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  • Oldnewbie

    My experience has been frustrating as I have 7 CD’s up on iTunes but all I see is individual songs or nothing listed.

  • If they’re opening in the iTunes Store on the desktop, perhaps you have Apple Music turned off? That’s what happens to me.

  • Ah, thanks. Might be. Will check.


  • Chuck Wiggins

    As an iTunes user and not an iTunes music “provider”, I’ve been vary annoyed by this change in behavior. I don’t choose to try or use Apple Music. I just found that on the General preferences screen, there is a “Show Apple Music” button that is checked. Unchecking it gets me back to the behavior I prefer – seeing music in iTunes store where I can hear samples and buy directly.

  • Amen to that. Thanks for the tip on switching the link.


  • They’re definitely moving towards making Apple Music the default. But, when you’re on the Apple Music URL for an album or single, there should be a link that says “Also available on iTunes.” Click that and it offers the downloadable versions, BUT notice that the URL doesn’t change. I think that means that in Apple’s eyes, the two services are kinda feeding one another.

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