How artists are making more money with Amazon Disc on Demand

A new revenue stream for CD Baby artists: Disc on Demand through Amazon

CD Baby is always looking for more revenue streams for our artists. Recently we’ve been testing a pilot program with Amazon Disc on Demand that has worked so well we’re hoping to expand the program by the end of the year to include all CD Baby artists. Here’s how it works in a nutshell: for no upfront cost, your CDs will always be in stock on Amazon.

Out of print? No problem!

Over 20% of CD sales are happening on, which means it’s become one of the most important retail destinations for music fans who prefer CDs. But what if your CDs are temporarily out of stock? What if you sold out and are reluctant to press another 1000 copies because the album is ten years old and sales have slowed? What if you never released physical in the first place, and just put the music out digitally? Without Disc on Demand, you’d miss a sale, and more importantly, miss out on the opportunity to make a new fan.

With Disc on Demand, one of your fans can pay $9.99 and Amazon will press a high-quality CD-R of your music, print a professional-looking package that includes your album cover on the front and a track listing on the back, and ship it to that customer (for free if they’re a Prime member). That way you’ll never miss a sale on Amazon!

Disc on Demand will not affect your normal CD sales; in fact, you’ll sell more music

A CD made available through Amazon Disc on Demand is —as the name suggests — a templated, duplicated-on-demand product. It will look different from your normal CDs and appeal to a different set of customers that now have the option to buy the on-demand CD through Amazon and other associated channels.

So far we’ve tested the program with 10,000 titles and over 10% of those albums saw additional sales that they wouldn’t have had otherwise if out-of-stock. Many albums saw more sales than they’ve seen from downloads or traditional CDs in a while, which makes sense; we’re helping you offer a different kind of format to a specific kind of music buyer on Amazon — someone who is dedicated to owning CDs.

How to offer your music through Amazon Disc on Demand

If your album hasn’t been included in that test group of 10k titles (you can search on Amazon and scroll through the results to find out), we hope to make it available via Disc on Demand by the end of the year. Whether you’ve opted for physical distribution, digital distribution, or both, your music will be automatically included in this program (though you can opt-out HERE). But unlike our physical distribution program where we keep a flat $4 cut per CD sold, with Amazon Disc on Demand we’re keeping only 9% of the net revenue after Amazon’s share per sale.

We’re pretty excited to make this new partnership available to all CD Baby artists, and it will be included with any Standard or Pro submission. You’ll be able to take advantage of a new sales channel and make your music available everywhere, in every format — without any additional upfront fees, and with no ongoing manufacturing costs!

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