Author Archives: Ethan Diamond

Credit Card Support!

Over the years, eight or nine (thousand) people have written to us asking for more ways to pay artists on Bandcamp. We’re pleased to announce that starting today, you have the option to use a credit card (or bank/debit card) to purchase digital albums and tracks, and also save your card with your fan account for faster checkout later. On top of that, you can purchase digital albums and tracks from multiple artists in a single step, rather than checking out for each artist individually. Discover some new music and try it out!

Things you may be wondering:

What cards are accepted?
Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover.

What currencies are supported?
Credit card checkout is available for digital-only purchases in US, Canadian, and Australian dollars, British pounds, Japanese yen, and euros (depending on your credit card provider, you may not be able to complete your purchase in all of these currencies). 

What about merch?
For now, PayPal will remain the only payment option for physical merch.

I’m an artist or label. Is the revenue share changing?
No. The revenue share is the same and you’ll continue to receive payments to your PayPal account. No action is necessary on your part.

Bandcamp, Downloads, Streaming, and the Inescapably Bright Future

In light of a recent report that Apple will soon abandon music downloads (later denied, but undoubtedly containing a certain amount of inevitability), we thought we’d take a moment to update you on the state of Bandcamp’s business and our plans for the future.

Bandcamp grew by 35% last year. Fans pay artists $4.3 million dollars every month using the site, and they buy about 25,000 records a day, which works out to about one every 4 seconds (you can see a real-time feed of those purchases on our desktop home page). Nearly 6 million fans have bought music through Bandcamp (half of whom are younger than 30), and hundreds of thousands of artists have sold music on Bandcamp. Digital album sales on Bandcamp grew 14% in 2015 while dropping 3% industry-wide, track sales grew 11% while dropping 13% industry-wide, vinyl was up 40%, cassettes 49%… even CD sales grew 10% (down 11% industry-wide). Most importantly of all, Bandcamp has been profitable (in the now-quaint revenues-exceed-expenses sense) since 2012.

Subscription-based music streaming,* on the other hand, has yet to prove itself to be a viable model, even after hundreds of millions of investment dollars raised and spent. For our part, we are committed to offering an alternative that we know works. As long as there are fans who care about the welfare of their favorite artists and want to help them keep making music, we will continue to provide that direct connection. And as long as there are fans who want to own, not rent, their music, that is a service we will continue to provide, and that is a model whose benefits we will continue to champion. We have been here since 2008 and we mean to be here in 2028. Thank you!

*Bandcamp is not a download store, and we very much embrace the convenience of streaming. When you buy music on Bandcamp, whether that’s in digital or physical form (30% of sales on Bandcamp are for vinyl and other merchandise), you not only get the pleasure of knowing you’re supporting the artist in a direct and transparent way, you also get instant, unlimited streaming of that music via our free apps for Android and iOS, as well as an optional, high-quality download. Your purchase is about direct support, ownership and access, whether that access takes the form of a stream, download, or both. So please consider joining us in never using “streaming” as shorthand for “subscription-based music.” The former is an inevitable technological shift, the latter is an unproven business model.

Exclusive Embeds

Attention music journalists, publicists, and artists who like the idea of a review or feature driving direct sales: you can now create exclusive embeds on Bandcamp! A site like Pitchfork, Fader or Stereogum can use an exclusive embed to offer its readers a first listen of an album or track, complete with a link back to Bandcamp to pre-order or purchase. Exclusive embeds can stream tracks that you aren’t streaming from your public album page, they can be restricted to one or more sites you specify, and, like other Bandcamp embedded players, they can be customized for a specific size/layout.

For example, in the above embed, all but one of the tracks can only be streamed here, on this blog — they’re not streaming on C Duncan’s public Bandcamp site. And like every other Bandcamp embed, there’s a direct link to purchase the album (in this case, a pre-order).

To create an exclusive embed, first navigate to the desired album, then click the Exclusive Embed link below the cover art (if you instead see Share / Embed / Exclusive, click that, then select Exclusive Embed). Note that the album must either be a pre-order, or if you are a Bandcamp Pro subscriber, an album for which you’ve disabled streaming on one or more of the tracks.

In the Exclusive Embed dialog, enter the URL of the site where the player can appear, check which tracks you want to stream, customize the layout and size if you wish, copy the code, and that’s it! A few more details can be found here.

Bundle Up, Winter’s A Comin!

Buy full digital discography | Maylee Todd

You can now offer fans your entire digital discography for a special price, and fans can purchase or gift it in a single transaction. Check out a few examples here, here, and here.

The full discography purchase option is not enabled by default. To turn it on, first log in to your Bandcamp account. If you’re eligible to enable full discography purchase, you’ll see a notification linking to the section of your Profile where you set it up:

20151123-buy-full-digital-discography-in-profile

You can choose to offer your full digital discography for no discount, or from 5 to 90% off. Once you enable full discography purchase and save your Profile, we notify all of your followers automatically.

We quietly launched full discography purchase last week, and based on the percentage of eligible artists who have enabled it, and their earnings so far, we know that if every eligible artist turns it on, we’ll see about $2.3 million in bundles sell over the next few weeks. So get on it!

A few caveats:
Artists must have at least three purchasable albums in order to offer a full discography bundle (two albums is just two albums — three on the other hand… that’s an oeuvre!).

Labels (meaning those with label, not artist, accounts) can offer full discography bundles for any of their artists, provided they meet the three album minimum, and payment for all their releases is directed to the same account.

Subscriber-Exclusive Video

If you have an artist subscription set up, you can now post video to just your paying subscribers! You upload video from desktop, like so:

post a video

And your subscribers can then view your video from their music feed on the web, or in the free Bandcamp app for Android and iOS:

subscriber feed with video

For those of you who had already jury-rigged subscriber-only video by posting links to open-but-not-publicized YouTube and Dropbox URLs, we admire your gumption but are relieved to put that dark chapter behind the both of us!