SoundCloud vs Spotify: Which Platform is Best for Artists?
SoundCloud vs Spotify: Which Platform is Best for Artists?

SoundCloud vs Spotify: Which Platform is Best for Artists?

Discussions between Spotify and SoundCloud fans for the best streaming service continue as long as these two platforms exist. SoundCloud was founded in 2007 and now has more than 30 million musicians who share their music with followers. Spotify, founded in 2006, started in Sweden and then became available in other countries. At the end of 2023, music streaming service Spotify reached a point of 230 million paid subscribers around the world, with over 600 million users overall. 

SoundCloud vs Spotify

This graph shows how the user count changed on both Spotify and SoundCloud. Spotify dominates over SoundCloud overall. Still, the number of musicians on SoundCloud is higher. Also, Spotify dominates with a higher paid subscriber count. It appears that Spotify is a better place to have a better listening experience and those who want to introduce themselves as musicians prefer to be on SoundCloud.

SoundCloud doesn’t have such growth, as there are only 140 million active users on this platform and 40 million creators who share their tracks with followers. When you see this comparison first time, you may not understand why people are still hesitating to make a choice. Still, there are lots of other factors they consider. People choose wisely because they want to maximize the impact, achieve maximum engagement, and, of course, have a solid income. Individuals who prefer SoundCloud want to know how to boost SoundCloud plays and success. If you still hesitate and want to know which platform is the most suitable for music promotion, keep reading.

How Can We Compare Soundcloud and Spotify?

Both platforms offer a wide range of features, making the music-listening experience more comfortable. Moreover, they simplify the distribution process for musicians, so their songs can reach a wider audience and get higher engagement. Still, if the platforms have almost the same functions, how can you decide what exactly to choose? How to grow on SoundCloud knowing you can have almost the same growth on Spotify? How to make people stay with you? Let’s dive into each platform and define its strengths and weaknesses.

Spotify - A Dream for Beginning Musicians

Spotify A Dream for Beginning Musicians

A simple interface of Spotify leaves users satisfied most of the time.  

When users first enter the platform, they have several reasons to stay on this platform. The initial reason is its simple user-friendly interface. You can easily access your liked songs, review recently searched tracks, discover preferred playlists, etc. Moreover. the platform offers several instruments to discover new musicians and songs. For example, it has several mechanisms to help people find new music:

Discover Weekly. A mix of new, fresh music based on your latest plays and preferences. The system analyzes what you’ve been listening to and forms a mix of the tracks you didn’t hear before.

Spotify Discover Weekly

Personalized mood mixes. Playlists are created for specific moods (sadness, happiness, loneliness, etc.) for every Spotify user. If you are looking for music that resonates with your current mood, try listening to these playlists.

Spotify Personalized mood mixes

Release Radar is a playlist that shares new releases at the end of the week. Your personalized playlist is formed based on your recent streams, artists you follow or listen to, and other recommended artists. If you are an artist and want to see your song in the next Release Radar, add it at least seven days before the release. You can check the playlist tab to see if your song was picked for a playlist. 

Spotify Release Radar

Spotify algorithm is the power of this platform. This is an AI-based mechanism that helps users discover new tracks, bands, and musicians. Moreover, a user count also matters as Spotify has a massive audience with lots of talented individuals who share their music with the world. 

Triggering the Spotify algorithm is essential for effective promotion. You have to optimize your profile and your tracks so that more people will discover your music. 

Another advantage of Spotify is the audio quality. Even though some people don’t care about it, you can feel the difference, especially when using the Premium package. The free version of Spotify allows you to stream music up to 160 kb/s in the official app and 128 kb/s in the web version. Once you get Spotify Premium, you’ll be able to reach 320 kb/s in the app and 256 kb/s in the web version.

Once we mentioned the Premium version of the platform, let’s say more about it. On Spotify, you have several options to upgrade your profile. 

  • Individual for yourself.
  • Duo for two users.
  • Family package. Up to 6 accounts for kids.
  • Student package with access to Hulu.

Premium packages allow you to have a free first month, so you can try the extended option and decide whether to continue. Moreover, Spotify Premium grants access to the audiobook subscriber catalog, allowing users to listen up to 15 hours per month. Moreover, you have options for music download and offline listening.

Spotify premium package

A premium package can be cancelled anytime.

Still, we can’t say that Spotify is a perfect platform. For example, it’s not suitable for listening to unofficial remixes. The reason is that average users can’t download their songs the same way they do on SoundCloud. Due to this factor, we often find some immortal classics a long time after their release, if you are even able to find them. Sometimes, people can’t find what they were looking for, and hidden treasures remain uncovered for months or even years.

SoundCloud - A Different Approach to Music Streaming

SoundCloud offers significantly different experiences of listening, promoting, and sharing music. 

SoundCloud is known as a platform that gives beginners the push they need to become rising stars. If you are an enthusiast and want to start your path in music, SoundCloud may be your best choice. This is a place where you can find musicians for cooperating producers to promote your music and build a dream career.

soundcloud vs spotify payout

There is not significant difference in the payout between two platforms. Still, despite the lower payment, people prefer SoundCloud over Spotify as a starting point.

This platform has a different approach is playlist creation and saving. You can gather your favorite songs into a playlist and share them with your audience. If you are a musician, you can create a mini playlist with 5 of your best songs and put them on the top of the page. It’s an introduction as you showcase your best music, so people can decide whether to follow you or not. It’s also a good option to present yourself because nobody wants to scroll through dozens of songs to evaluate you. You can make your own top and leave the best impression, which allows you to get more plays on SoundCloud.

On SoundCloud, the music upload process is quite simple. If your files are in the appropriate format, it will take a few seconds to do it. If you need to reformat your music, a platform gives access to a special program that encodes and decompresses files. Also, you can edit your tracks by using available editing tools. Add special effects, remove background noise, and adjust the sound level. 

Like Spotify, SoundCloud gives users access to audiobooks and podcasts. You can follow your favorite authors and listen to chapter after chapter. However, unlike Spotify, SoundCloud gives you free access to audiobooks. 

Hashtag Audiobooks on SoundCloud 

Find the stories you want using hashtag #Audiobooks 

And now, the main paradox. Despite Spotify's more active users and more artists, its catalog has fewer songs. On SoundCloud, you have access to more than 200 million songs, while Spotify has over 80 million songs. Why the difference is so big? The thing is that most of the songs you find on SoundCloud are from independent musicians. If you are looking for trending tracks, Spotify would be a better option. 

In this video, an author gives 5 major reasons why people should go to SoundCloud instead of Spotify. For example, SoundCloud supports artists much better, SoundCloud has access to micro-genres, etc.

Now, to the paid services. SoundCloud also offers the Pro version. For $7 per month, you can listen to music offline, have better audio quality, and stream songs with no advertisements. However, if you pay $15, you get Pro Unlimited. This version offers unlimited upload time, access to additional stats, and exclusive content. Still, it doesn’t surpass Spotify because it has 4 premium packages to choose from. It is also very important to understand how musicians will promote the music. We have prepared articles:
How does the Soundcloud Algorithm Work

How does Spotify Algorithm work for artists

What About Promotion?

Since we were able to compare the main capabilities of each platform, we can proceed to the most important question: which platform is the best for promotion? When individuals enter SoundCloud and see how easy it is to work with this platform, they want to know how to get more plays on SoundCloud and increase engagement.  

users on Reddit answer the question about SoundCloud and Spotify

That’s how users on Reddit answer the question about SoundCloud and Spotify

If you are a beginner in the music industry and want to get started, there’s no better place than SoundCloud. You will gain your first followers and be able to promote your music effectively. Still, if you are a more experienced artist who already has plenty of supporters and a couple of published tracks, Spotify is something you may choose. Access Spotify for Artists to increase your promotion capabilities, find more fans abroad, and understand how to increase your audience before the release every time.

case study of Magic City Hippies and Sequenced Marquee

A case study of Magic City Hippies and Sequenced Marquee explains how musicians use the full potential of Spotify for Artists to grow fans’ interest and attract new listeners.

Musicians who come to Spotify will engage with a bigger audience. Spotify is more like a social media platform that connects musicians of different styles, allowing them to build connections, collaborate, and create their own paths to glory. Read our guide Monetization Strategies Launching Podcast on Spotify.

 

Use Additional Music Promotion to Make a Name

Still, working on music platforms will be ineffective without a proper promotion. You need to present your music to the world and increase engagement to make your music recognized. By trusting your music profile to ArtistPush specialists, you receive complex support and get organic reach at your profile. We use comprehensive methods to trigger the algorithm and increase engagement. Depending on the package selection, you will receive more listens and likes or increase the listener count. For example, when you purchase organic SoundCloud push, you receive a complex boost, including:

  • Plays from real users
  • Reposts
  • Likes
  • Relevant comments
  • New followers (1-2% of the number of reposts)

Package type

Services

Cost

Delivery time

Advantages

Organic Push 1 day

300-500 plays
10-60 real reposts
10-80 likes
1-10 real comments
the follower count increased

$25

1 day

Quick delivery and quick results
Affordable price



Organic Push 3 days

1000 real plays
50-90 real reposts
100-200 real likes
10-30 relevant comments
more real followers

$55

3 days

Affordable price
Rapid delivery
Organic engagement

Organic Push 6 days

2000-5000 real plays
200-400 real reposts
150-300 real likes
30-70 relevant comments
increasing the follower count

$99

6 days

Organic promotion

Quick delivery

Affordable price

Organic Push 10 days

3000-6000 real plays
300-600 real reposts
150-300 real likes
70-150 relevant comments
more real followers

$155

10 days

Powerful profile push

organic engagement

Relevant comments from real users

Increasing follower count

Organic Push 20 days

6000-12000 organic plays
up to 300 organic comments
600-1200 organic reposts
300-600 organic likes

$299

20 days

Engagement with free and and premium accounts
Audience coverage up to 500k
Listens from genre fans
Powerful algorithm boost

Organic Push 40 days

50 000 - 100 000 organic plays

400 organic comments

1200 - 2000 organic reposts

600-1200 organic likes

$495

40 days

Audience coverage up to 1 million

Engagement with premium and free Spotify account users

 

SoundCloud vs Spotify: What’s Your Choice?

The discussion about SoundCloud and Spotify never stops. Everyone has their own experience in creating and promoting music, so it works differently for everyone. Someone starts on SoundCloud and decides to stay because the streaming platform usage feels comfortable. Musicians search for effective promotion methods and learn how to get more views on SoundCloud. Moreover, they use cross-platform promotion, using the instruments of social media to share their music with a wider audience. Anyway, when you get to choose between SoundCloud and Spotify, look at what’s better for your personal goals.

FAQ

What Are the Disadvantages of Soundcloud?

Is Soundcloud a Better Platform for Brands?

Is Spotify Better Than Soundcloud?

How to Improve Your Spotify Profile?

Is Soundcloud a Good Option for Independent Musicians?

Does Spotify Have Better Audio Quality than SoundCloud?

2 comments

  • Kam Harris

    As an aspiring musician, I’ve found SoundCloud to be an invaluable platform for kickstarting my career. The ease of uploading tracks and engaging with listeners has been instrumental in growing my fanbase. Plus, the ability to curate playlists and showcase my best work upfront has been a game-changer. SoundCloud truly supports artists from the ground up!

    As an aspiring musician, I’ve found SoundCloud to be an invaluable platform for kickstarting my career. The ease of uploading tracks and engaging with listeners has been instrumental in growing my fanbase. Plus, the ability to curate playlists and showcase my best work upfront has been a game-changer. SoundCloud truly supports artists from the ground up!

  • Sammy

    As an independent artist, I’ve tried both SoundCloud and Spotify, and each has its pros and cons. SoundCloud offers a great platform for new artists to showcase their talent and connect with fans directly. However, Spotify’s algorithm and massive user base provide unparalleled exposure. It’s a tough choice!

    As an independent artist, I’ve tried both SoundCloud and Spotify, and each has its pros and cons. SoundCloud offers a great platform for new artists to showcase their talent and connect with fans directly. However, Spotify’s algorithm and massive user base provide unparalleled exposure. It’s a tough choice!

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