This may sound like a huge concept, but don't be daunted by it. I have therefore, ahem, set up this page to help you with all your music selling needs including titled areas that you need to know, and I have titled it, sell my music!
We need to get the bad vibes out of the way first- to clear the air:
Sell my music guide point 1.
The main problem with most music sites is that they assume people will buy from them straight away because they host the new genre of the moment, whether it be hip-hop, rave or whatever. After a few months of no sales, but still paying out service fees, the site withdraws and folds.
Selling anything on your site should ALWAYS be a second thought, because you must always think what the visitor thinks...why should I buy anything from here? Remember you are new, you are an up-and-coming artist that no-one knows so signing up for any merchant service provider (that gives access to credit cards etc) that has monthly fees is a poor idea. Just because you are on the Internet doesn't automatically mean instant money.
Don't go away!! All things are not lost. Seeing that you have the sell my music idea is a good one. At least you are dedicated.
Sell my music guide point 2.
There are things that we can do however, that can make the visitor become a paying customer. What 90% of all sites do (and this is FACT, and it is why so many fail) is sell goods to visitors, and thats it. Now I have talked about this before, THE INTERNET WAS FOUNDED ON FREE STUFF! For example: If I want a small utility I will look high and low for a freeware version of it first, all the time. Winamp- completely free for my needs at the moment, so why on earth should I pay $20 for a utility that does exactly the same? If I want information about a certain topic, I will go to the library, I will search for the info over the Internet before I even consider buying a book. This fundamental perception, what most Internet surfers do, has not been utilized by those 90% of all web sites. And they will fail.
Sell my music tip:
Give surfers what they want- free content, free stuff, anything related to your topic that can be given away, plastered in your site's web address. My newsletter, TechnoLite, gives away a free ebook- Make your Words Sell- helping your words to sell. Totally free and a useful resource on how to make that killer sales copy.
Sell my music tip:
So first, start up your site with content. Especially keyword filled content. This is more important than your run-of-the-mill normal content. Keyword targeted content pages are full of keywords, or more specifically surfer typed keywords. Let me explain. You may think that surfers are looking for a topic so you write about it and put that page up on your site. Your logs then state no in-coming traffic to that page. Oh dear. You wait and wait- nothing happens. You were sure that people were searching for that!
Sell my music tip:
But what actually happens is that when someone types into a search engine, they type in a phrase or some sort of variation on the main theme. So instead of surfers looking for films, they will search for a specific film, or "the 10 best films of 2005", "the best horror films", "10 best female actors" etc. So your site should be ticking off these pages. But how do you know what people are searching for? Wordtracker is a good start.
Wordtracker is a tool that allows you to choose the best keywords for your site, rated upon how many people have searched for them, against how many sites there are. The trial version is good, and allows you to search unlimited times for 30 keywords that were used in MSN search engine (inputting your email at the start allows Wordtracker to email you the results, that all). The full version is costly and not needed too much at the start.
There is a free method out there. As mentioned before, Overture is a good start as well. Type in what your topic is about and a whole wealth of keywords appear. Then go into Google and type in your keyword (from Overture) with inverted commas spaced around the word, e.g "best+films+of+the+year", the pluses are added to tell the engine those are the only words that you want searched for. Then you will know how many sites there are related to those words. Nichbot is also a good idea, does all of the above in one single search.
Once this process has been completed then you will have a rough idea of what is good to write about. The thing is this is only a guide to get people coming into your site. Because from these pages you will have links coming off them to other related pages on your site, then you site justs gets bigger and bigger.
Sell my music tip:
Make sure that your main keyword is scattered within your main text- like an hour glass- more at the top and bottom and lightly in the middle. Also your keyword needs to be placed in your title, description and page title.
I think the content is needed so much within your sites that is why I have talked so much about it. Without content, you will have no new or return surfers, and without surfers you have no income. So what now, when you have content? The best thing to do is build more content, you can't have enough of it. Every industry, every hobby is evolving so there is plenty of content out there.
Sell my music tip:
Can I sell my music now? No, you need to Presell yourself, giving your web site content is the only way to ever get any sales from any visitor. If you haven't read it yet, the Internet music marketing article homepage contains free articles explaining how you go about putting free content onto your web site to attract constant visitations and make visitors see that you are not scamming them, that you are for real, and that you have something good to offer them.
Remember you are up against those 90% of web sites (who are also thinking I wanna sell my music)- there will always be a steady stream of them as they will not learn, they will have the advertising money, the clever slogans, the catchy graphics behind them but ultimately they will fail because they haven't got substance.
Sell my music tip:
Your main task though, is to give your visitors free MP3s, all your songs, remixed versions of them, different styles. Just get a buzz up and going. Contact your mailing list subscribers (NOTE: as stated in the marketing homepage, a mailing list is a must) with full updates of your site. offer them free utilities, make them feel that they are worth it.
After a period of time, after you have listened to comments (emailed to you about your tracks) and took on-board the advice, state that your first album has come out. Offer them one or two tracks to download for free and then put the album as an MP3 album up for sale for about $1-2. Is that it! Yep, for the present time, one to two dollars (or similar number in your currency), just to cover any expenses. $1-2 is not that much/ not alot of cash so people don't mind putting up that amount for a main album from an artist that they are not too familiar with (even though they have downloaded your free tracks).
But there is the catch, how do we actually sell our tracks? How do we go about offering security? How would we like to get paid?
Sell my music guide point 3.
The real and only way to sell anything, safely, online is to pay using credit cards. If we do not use a credit card for our purchaces then we are losing out on 80% of sales. Credit cards also offer the consumer a certain buffer- most cards offer insurance so a consumer is more open to pay through a credit card. There are plenty of vendors out there specifically designed to sell music. They are a good idea, however why should they receive a skim off the top for your hard work? The whole setting up, and payment options are really easy, and it would be a waste of money to use a specific vendor, anyway I will show you the steps to accepting your own credit card payments.
In the olden days if you wanted to accept credit cards you had to have a merchant account, a solid business plan, and a whole host of other complications that stiffled the small business owner. As time has moved on and competition has moved in, there is a whole range of providers that accept credit cards on your behalf.
Sell my music guide point 3a. Please note:
What you have to watch with credit card providers is that: Are they going to be stable? Are their fees to high for you? Are there any clauses that can stifle future plans?
Sell my music guide point 4.
The best of the bunch has to be without any doubt Clickbank. A super, and highly recommended credit card processing company that is very cheap (the cheapest at present to be honest), handles all the payment area, helps with tracking and has its own affiliate programme attached. There are many people that use Clickbank so it is hardly likely to fold, they also have an excellent customer service system and they care about their image so much that they don't allow or represent shoddy sites.
Sell my music guide point 4a. Please note:
(I am assuming that you have a site that can host some MP3s for you, as this is a must. If you are using a site like MP3.com then that is ok if you want hosting of your MP3s for marketing and if you are just starting out. However, if you want to sell your MP3s then a personal hosting site is the only real option for you)
If you do go with Clickbank they will show you how to set up your pages to make and receive a sale. For clarity I will show you what they ask for:
With all the plus sides Clickbank possesses, it has two downsides. Unfortunately they do not accept checks or phone orders however these methods of payment are very small in comparison with credit cards, and a majority of surfers just use cards. Clickbank also charge $1 plus a very strangly small percentage) per transaction. This is why it is best to charge $2 for the piece you want to sell (Ebay charge a relative similar amount, and with the service Clickbank offer it is a bargain).
Sell my music guide point 5.
Now we have our credit card processor, all we have to do is to make our sales page. To make it all professional Clickbank ask you to place onto your sales page a little note about where do customers go to pay (including being on high security servers hosted by Clickbank who keep info secure) and how to collect their goods.
Clickbank then arrange a test run of your credit card facility- setting prices and making sure your links work.
Your download page should have a title that could never be found by an engine, eg. asgfiuygf.html This is where your visitor will be sent (once they have filled out their credit card details and paid you). Your downloadable MP3s will be shown as links, and the customer is free to download. To stop any fraud, it would be best to change your download page on a regular basis (making Clickbank aware of the change). Again Clickbank asks you to put on various statements to add a professional image to the download page. They ask you to 1)state that Clickbank will be shown on the credit card bill. 2)that you have a "help" email address to access any problems 3)how do you get the MP3s off the site in the first place and 4) a link back to your homepage.
Sell my music guide point 6.
That's it! That's all you have to do for Clickbank. How easy was that. I mean it, there is no other reason not to go for Clickbank as it is fantastic. If you want to sell other peoples MP3s, software, movies etc, there is a huge Clickbank community all willing to get you to sell their goods (some at quite high affiliate percentages), so really Clickbank is such a win-win package that nothing quite beats it.
Sell my music guide point 6a. Tip:
With Clickbank, you can set up other pages for other selling campaigns (like selling ebooks, promotional offers, or even sell another album).
If you are starting out and want to make money with your (music) internet site, there are two sure fire ways of doing so (apart from selling your own goods as mentioned with Clickbank). These are Affiliate programs and Adsense.
A great marketing plan is to give away ringtones, so once you finish the sell my music guide, click to make your own ringtones, polyphonic or MP3. These can be then given away from your website, increasing and distributing your music listeners easily.
Couresty ala make-your-own-dance-and-techno-songs.com