NuPlays is a new ecommerce platform for selling digital music and other downloads in bundles that can include physical items. Points are awarded to customers for each purchase which can then be used on additional rewards to encourage legitimate music sales.
Though the recently hatched site features individual musicians and bands, the platform is designed to accommodate labels as well. In addition, integration with a digital distributor is in the works to facilitate easy use by artists and labels using the to-be-announced distributor's service.
NuPlays officially launched last week and, though it's still a bit rough around the edges, the potential for a powerful ecommerce platform is certainly evident.
NuPlays Promo Video
The basic concept of NuPlays is that they handle payments and delivery of digital downloads while musicians and labels using their service handle delivery of any physical items. Musicians can also designate services that provide physical fulfillment. Though sellers can use the platform to just sell music downloads, they are encouraged to offer bundles to tempt possible buyers.
The only fee currently charged by NuPlays is 23.08% of the sales price with a minimum of $1.50. This includes payment fees to PayPal but is a bit on the pricey side if compared to simple ecommerce sites. As sales are made the sellers' revenue is immediately transferred to their PayPal account.
In addition to direct sales via the site or a Facebook store on the artist's page, sellers can create MEGAOffers. These are special items available in limited quantities that can be redeemed for points awarded to buyers each time they buy something. NuPlays is also generating MEGAOffers to get things going and to support emerging artists that may not have additional items to sweeten the deal.
The hope is that offering special items and redeemable points will encourage music buyers who might otherwise download illegal music files. However that works out NuPlays has a lot of potential as an ecommerce platform.
With an integration underway with a currently unidentified digital distributor, the potential for NuPlays to work with other services is where additional value to musicians will emerge. Given that many indie artists and labels find themselves using multiple services on the web, NuPlays' ability to work with others will set them apart if successful.
Also in the works is a mobile version of the website as well as mobile apps. You can check out the Facebook store on NuPlays page.
Whether or not NuPlays is something that fits your current needs, it's definitely a site to watch as they flesh things out and develop additional relationships with other services.
Hypebot Senior Contributor Clyde Smith (@fluxresearch) maintains a business writing hub at Flux Research and blogs at Crowdfunding For Musicians. To suggest topics for Hypebot, contact: clyde(at)fluxresearch(dot)com.