According to Billboard, the popular direct-to-fan platform Bandcamp.com has recently reached the $100 million dollars milestone of monies paid out to artists who use the site to sell their music and merchandise. They also plan to allow artists to set up individual subscription services for their fans. Which means fans will soon be able to pay a monthly or yearly fee in order to gain access to the content their favorite independent artists put out into the world. Bandcamp.com has greatly leveled the playing field for independent artists and the many features already available prove just that. The release of an Artist Subscription model would only add to the already rapid growing independent artist revenue stream.
I recently released an EP on Bandcamp.com, despite various arguments with my peers to use an aggregator such as Tunecore or CD Baby. What I found that the process was extremely user friendly. I was able to set up pre-sale orders before the release, set up physical orders, and of course set up digital orders as well. I was also given the option to let fans pay more for the release if they wanted to. There weren’t any set up fees, or unnecessary processing. As soon as I upload the music I had the option to release it.
Once I received my first sale, I was sent and email that told me how much money I received and showed how much money went to Bandcamp. Their pricing around 10-15% depending on the volume of sales you make. The best part is that the money is automatically transferred to your PayPal account meaning you can use the funds immediately.
In conclusion, I think it would benefit all independent artists to search for ways to get their content to their fans directly and start paying attention to the business models of many of the popular companies that exist today only to merely act as the middle man.