Moontoast and DIY Media both released products this week that allow SoundCloud users to sell their music directly to fans through their Facebook pages.
Moontoast, which builds products that enable commerce on the Facebook platform, now allows SoundCloud users to sell their music through Facebook using its Moontoast Impulse Facebook app. SoundCloud users simply select a SoundCloud track from within the Moontoast Impulse app. An example can be seen at the Facebook page of Meava Meline.
Here's how it works, according to Moontoast chief technology officer Marcus Whitney: When an artist logs into Impulse, it asks if the artist has a SoundCloud account. Once logged in to SoundCloud, Moontoast recognizes all the songs inside SoundCloud that can be accessed by other apps and pulls in the songs' metadata from SoundCloud, which can be edited or left as is. Once finished, the artist clicks "import" and the SoundCloud songs are brought over to Moontoast Impulse. "What it really does is it speeds up the process," says Whitney. "You've already entered the stuff in SoundCloud. You don't have to redo everything."
Social commerce is in its infancy but is expected to be a huge market in the coming years. A report released in January by consulting firm Booz & Company forecast the global social commerce market to grow from $5 billion in 2011 to $30 billion in 2015 - with $14 billion coming from the U.S.
Since Facebook is the leading social network, it is attracting the most activity in social platforms. Services such as Volusion's Social Store Builder, BigCommerce's SocialShop and 3DCart already allow sellers to incorporate storefronts within tabs on their Facebook pages. And just last week, Proctor & Gamble launched six new Facebook stores using Resource Interactive's DCP: Facebook Platform.
There were previously a few ways to integrate one's SoundCloud account with direct-to-fan selling. TuneCore's SoundCloud app allows users to import their SoundCloud libraries into TuneCore and distribute through major download stores and music services. In addition, the SoundRain app lets artists sell any of their songs on SoundCloud using online payment service Minno, although Minno was rebranded as BuySimple in late May.
There are ways to sell music on Facebook beyond these integrations with SoundCloud. Topspin Media has partnered with Facebook marketing startup RootMusic to enable Topspin users to integrate their accounts with RootMusic, allowing for the sale of music, merch and tickets on their RootMusic BandPages.
Although SoundCloud has become a popular platforms for sharing and streaming music, it does not itself allow its users to sell music on its platform. When Billboard spoke with CEO Alexander Ljung in May (subscription required) he explained the company has worked to improve its platform and will allow others to facilitate sales. "We looked at it several times but we're not going to do that. We have some apps on the API that are built on top of the SoundCloud platform that allow people to do that and allow people to distribute those tracks into iTunes. You can send a buy link in the SoundCloud widget, but we won't deal with the actual transaction."