How To Make Money On Spotify

By Richard Pryn •  Updated: 10/05/22 •  7 min read

Artists can make money through Spotify, and it’s vital that you know how to do this when starting up a music career. 

The music industry is volatile, and a perfect example of this is the fall of record labels in favor of streaming services like Spotify.

How To Make Money On Spotify

This means that money goes from the streaming service to the artist, rather than a middleman in the shape of a record label. 

Spotify must pay you whenever your song gets played enough times on the platform to warrant a payout. Today we’re looking at how you can make money from your music through Spotify. 

How Musicians Make Money

Musicians can make money in a number of ways through the music industry, although not all of these methods are as effective as each other. 

Some popular ways that artists make their money are through royalties, merchandise, and touring shows. 

However, streaming platforms have become the most popular method of earning money through music. Streaming services include the likes of Apple Music and Spotify. 

This is due to the sheer volume of people using streaming services. Spotify currently has 188 million premium subscribers over the world! 

How Much Does Spotify Pay Musicians? 

Spotify pays its artists royalties for every stream of their song once it reaches a minimum number of plays. 

The number of royalties that you’ll be paid will depend on your personal situation, although the average price is between $0.003 and $0.0084 per stream. 

The earnings of each stream will depend on where in the world it is being streamed from, as well as the time of year. 

Spotify considers a stream to be a play that lasts longer than 30 seconds of your song. 

So, considering the earnings on each of your streams on Spotify, it’s not that lucrative of a business plan. If all you’re doing is uploading your songs to Spotify without any additional marketing, you might not make much money. 

However, there are some ways in which you can make more money through Spotify, which we will look at now. 

Making More Money From Spotify

To make more money from Spotify, you need to get more streams from your listeners. You will get paid for each time your music is listened to for 30 seconds, otherwise the stream won’t count. 

Focus On High-Income Countries

High-income countries, such as the US and UK, will earn you higher royalties per stream than lower income countries. So, ideally you should focus on marketing your music in these countries to maximize your profits. 

You can attempt to get Spotify to place your music in playlists that are highly played in these countries. 

Bear in mind that Spotify uses an algorithm for putting songs into their playlists, so you cannot contact someone to get your song added to their playlists.

So, you’ll need to adjust your music to make it attractive to the algorithm. 

The best way to do this is to avoid long intros into your songs. These tend to perform worse than songs with shorter intros, and therefore the playlist algorithm is less likely to pick songs with the former.

It makes sense, too, as the quicker your song gets into the lyrics, the more likely it is that the listener is going to keep your song playing.

If they get bored of the long intro, they might turn off your song before they get to 30 seconds. 

Keep The Quality Of Your Music High

It might sound obvious, but the best way to keep people listening to your music for longer than 30 seconds is to make sure that your music is high quality.

If your music isn’t the same quality as those of the top performing artists, then the majority of listeners will switch off before 30 seconds is up. 

Again, the Spotify algorithm will pick up on the quality of your music, and will prioritize high-quality music for its playlists. And the more playlists you’re included in, the higher the number of streams. 

Collaborate With An Established Company

Established distribution companies are your new best friend when it comes to making money on Spotify. But what do we mean by established companies? 

We’re not talking about a company that has worked with 100 or even 1,000 artists. No, we mean companies that have more than 10,000 artists under their belts. 

These companies work Spotify campaigns which work to get your music more organic streams, which will maximize your royalties.

They will all have their own Spotify campaign structure which you can determine whether it will be the best option for your music or not.

Other Ways To Make Money Through Spotify

Aside from streams, there are also other ways to make money using Spotify.

For example, you could use Spotify Analytics to plan your tour. You don’t want to be playing music that everyone skips when it comes on their playlist!

Use the analytics to make sure that your set list is full of the best performing songs. You can also use the analytics to plan where you’re going to visit on tour, booking venues in the cities where your music is being listened to the most. 

Spotify also has an option to promote your concert through Spotify, hopefully selling more tickets and earning you more money.

Simply add your tour dates to Spotify and they will show while people listen to your music. 

You can also sell merchandise through Spotify if you sign up for MerchBar. This allows you to sell directly to listeners, requiring very little effort on your part! 

There are other platforms

I have spent a lot of my time on researching income from streaming and Spotify gets the lion share of the interest. However, there are other platforms that can and do make you money through your music.

One of my side projects, This Shimmering Sky, is an ambient music artist. I would write this music as a way to relax and unwind. Also, I just love ambient music.

I started to release my music through Ditto Music. I was making no effort in marketing at all. I just wanted them out there.

I kept releasing singles and albums every-so-often. I persisted.

One day I decided to check my analytics on Ditto Music to find that one of my tracks had been picked up by an Apple Music playlist and had already been streamed over 1 million times.

Cashback!

That one track earned me and my family a fair bit of money and I hadn’t even considered Apple Music to be a player in the streaming landscape.

Your takeaway here is to keep putting music out and don’t overlook the other streaming platforms.

Summary

We hope that you have learned something of interest from our article on how to make money on Spotify.

It all comes down to royalties and how many streams you can get on your music. Don’t forget that they have to last at least 30 seconds for them to count! 

You can maximize streams by targeting the algorithm, using an established brand to help, and keeping the quality of your music high.

Richard Pryn

Hey there. I am an award winning composer for movie trailers, including Bladerunner 2049, Diablo II, WandaVision, and loads more. I am the founder of The Trailer Music School where my aim is to teach everything I know about music composition, production, and generally being a functional human being. I podcast, blog, vlog and jog (sometimes). I also love coffee, nachos and self-improvement. I live with my wife, three kids and numerous pets. I am also known by my pseudonym, Richard Schrieber (it’s a long story).

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