CDBaby: iTunes Still Accounts for 77.4% of Digital Revenues

We’re guessing rivals like Tunecore have similar ratios, and this probably extends beyond the unsigned and indie space.

According to a year-2011 revenue analysis shared by the company, CDBaby artists pulled a massive 77.4 percent of digital revenues from the iTunes Store, on an aggregated basis.  AmazonMP3 was a distant second, but still a substantial 10.5 percent of the total.

Here’s the pie, as constructed by CD Baby. Physical CDs are a separate bucket.

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So what about streaming? Both Rhapsody and Spotify are represented, but only in small (though growing) amounts.  Perhaps surprisingly (or not), Rhapsody is edging Spotify out with a 2.1 percent share, slightly higher than Spotify’s 2.0 percent.  Others, like Deezer, are scant contributors, but are probably stronger in specific regions like France.

Here’s where this gets a little skewed: CD Baby counts 4.5 percent of digital revenues from its own store.  That’s likely accurate for its own customers, though this doesn’t translate as much to the broader indie or DIY space.  And, definitely not towards services like Tunecore.

15 Responses

  1. KB

    The whole infographic from which these stats were pulled is located here –

    It helps to see them in context of all of CD Baby’s 2011 stats.

  2. Visitor

    I used to use CDBaby all the time ordering stuff from lesser known artist. The last couple of time I have used them the delivery time of the CD has been excruciatingly long

    • Tony van Veen

      We ship all CD orders the day they are received. However, we depend on our artists to keep their discs in stock in our warehouse, and yes, sometimes it takes them a long time to replenish their stock, which leads to unfortunate delays like you experienced.

      Tony van Veen
      CEO, CD Baby

      • Visitor

        My experience is not in the time it takes to order out of stock items. Its the week + it has taken my order to get to my home. And I am in the US and ship across the country all the time, I can’t figure out how it takes so much longer for my orders from cdbaby to travel in the same postal system.

  3. Tony van Veen

    Just for clarification… iTunes is not 77.4% of all artist revenues on CD Baby, only of download/streaming revenues. Many of our artists (i.e. those with CDs) continue to derive substantial additional income from CD sales through CD Baby and our distribution partners Super D, Alliance, and direct sales on Amazon.

    Tony van Veen, CEO, CD Baby

    • paul


      Hey there, I’ll underscore that this is digital we’re talking about.


  4. Jørgen Avsnes

    Are these numbers for the world, or just the Us? Stating this in the article seems important.

    • paul

      Hey Jørgen,

      CDBaby is a global distributor, for example check out their iTunes Store distribution spread.

      Also, notice that Deezer is on there, showing ex-US distro.

      All of that said, I don’t have access to the the global breakdown, but I’d guess this is tilted towards US-based distribution outlets.

      Maybe someone from CDBaby can weigh in with more detail.


      (written while listening to Gotye)

      • Tony van Veen

        These numbers are global for CD Baby members. We have members from all over the world, and approximately 25% of revenues are international.

  5. steveh

    This demonstrates clearly that megalomaniac Daniel Ek is farting higher than his ass!!!

  6. David G

    I think it demonstrates how fast Spotify is catching up with its much older competitor.

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