The Most Popular Music Websites In 2010

image from www.getentrepreneurial.com Ryan Van Etten (@ryanve), Editor/Producer of VirtualMusic.tv, has created a fascinating music website heat map; it depicts estimated web-based music consumption in the U.S. in 2010.

The visualization is based on traffic data from Compete. Green indicates positive growth in 2010. Red indicates negative growth in 2010. Notable is the fact that cloud-based music services, aside from we7 and Rdio, had a bad year traffic-wise. we7 and Rdio may have grown, but they appear to hold a much smaller percentage of consumer mind-share than their competitors.Take a look:

Let’s zoom out and view the bigger picture:

For a more detailed graphic and info go here.

Share on:


  1. I love graphics like this — great way to tell a story. But I’m not sure they’re telling the a complete story here. Popularity is great, site traffic is great, but I’d rather see the same presentation charting which sites generated the most positive returns for the artists and bands.
    More to the point, I don’t see Nimbit, Topspin, or TuneCore on there. And what about Sonicbids? Love ’em or hate ’em (any of them … ), each of those sites helps deliver solid, meaningful results to musicians. And yes, I’m sure there’re lots of others (like mine: http://www.di-why.com !)
    And, as noted expert Boy George points out, “popularity breeds contempt…”

  2. “Included are websites where music is streamed and/or downloaded. Due to accurate sample rate availability (and in the interest of sanity) websites with less than 100,000 monthly visits are omitted.”
    …That might be the answer. I’m sure Ryan will chime in.

  3. great graphics… and I am not surprised that youtube has such a large percentage. We all go there to look stuff up!
    we aren’t allowed Pandora in Canada 🙁

  4. It is all about reliability these days. YouTube does not always provide the highest quality audio. But it is fast and when I type in “SOJA Everything Changes” I am listening within seconds. That is a serious competitive advantage.
    I use Rdio for everything else. I really dig the UI, but it is not the most reliable in spite of its mobility.

  5. You know it! Songza is sizable. Songza.fm changed to Songza.com in 2010. That URL change made the data harder to interpret. What I did was use the current one for measuring visits since the .fm forwards to the .com, and I combined data from both to obtain their 55% growth figure.
    I used the “visits” metric rather than unique visitors because it’s considered to be more telling. For example, if I visit Hypebot everyday for a month and read 3 articles each time, then I’d be 1 unique visitor, 30 visits, and 90 pageviews.

  6. Right, what I really wanted to do was paint a big picture of music consumption. Nimbit/Topspin/TuneCore/Sonicbids are ‘tools/services’ for musicians rather than listening destinations. Here are their estimates if you’re curious:
    Nimbit: 22k visits/month (-19% in 2010)
    Topspin: 16k visits/month (+11% in 2010)
    Tunecore: 185k visits/month (+50% in 2010)
    Sonicbids: 174k visits/month (-29% in 2010)
    Now as for charting return…that all depends on what you consider as return b/c there are returns that go beyond dollars, right?

  7. As an artist, this is incredibly useful information to have. I’ve been thinking about what sites to add to my distribution chain and now that I see cdBaby on the decline, I will not continue to use them. Thank you.

  8. It’s a shame there isnt a version for international services. YouTube numbers would explode and services like eMusic, Bandcamp, Last.fm and others who also have sizable x-US visitors would be more interesting.
    The music doesnt stop at the US border!

  9. It depends what you’re using CDBaby for. Their digital distribution (to iTunes and beyond)is still excellent IMO. I believe they distribute to more niche outlets then Tunecore. It depends how many sales you make per year as to which one is better in the bank. 9% (CDBaby) vs. flat yearly fee (Tunecore).

  10. I focused on the U.S. b/c that’s where I had the had the best data. Find me a solid source of international data and I will crunch it. 🙂 I know Quantcast has global/international data but I would have have been able to include less sites.

  11. There is a great new website for undiscovered artists. It’s called:www.bangosworld.com / password is: bango. They are just opening up for artists to upload their projects (music, films, books, games) then they are going live in a few weeks. It’s a huge entertainment website with their own TV channel, auctions, social network, music and more. I’ve never see one quite like this. If you are waiting to be discovered, this is definitely the place.

Comments are closed.