It's time for a summary view of statistics of how Magnatune is doing. I try to do one of these at the end of each year.
This first chart shows consumer sales of music (downloads and CDs) in dollars (sorry, dollar amounts aren't something I'm sharing yet).
You can see that in 2003/2004 we were on a downward trend, which was more or less stabilized in 2005, and then in November 2005, went up about 80% and have held there. I believe this increase was caused by a bunch of changes we made, such as the "share with 3 friends", "podcasting license" and "shannon's voice at the end of each song"
It's great that we increased sales and stabilized them, but I'm puzzled as to why our consumer sales didn't increase at all in 2006. We're going to need to work on that.
There are a ton of new things that should effect 2007 sales, such as the flash player, roll out of subscription and fill-your-ipod offerings, free-song-of-the-day, and others.
Number of licenses sold each month
The number of music licenses we're selling every month grew dramatically this year, at 2.5x pre-2006 levels.
Monthly revenue from music licensing:
Naturally, with that much of an increase in licenses each month, we see that licensing revenue also increased. However, revenue increased by a much smaller amount than quantity, which indicates that we're selling many more less expensive licenses. More quantity is good, as we're less beholden to a few clients or sales each month, but overall the trend is worrying. However, if we can make up the lower per-license-price with increased quantity, we'll be ok.
And now onto web traffic stats.
This chart shows our overall traffic each month across several variables:
The metric I look at most is "unique visitors" which grew 50% this year, from around 13,000 per month to around 20,000 per month. That's good news, and I believe this is mostly coming from podcast listeners. Since consumer sales didn't increase this year, I think this means we're doing a poor job of converting podcast listeners into paying customers, and that's something I aim to work on this year, specifically with the subscription service.
You can also see that the number of visits grew 2.5x times, even stronger than the # of visitors, as did the number of pages viewed. Overall, this shows that a lot more people are coming to Magnatune, and staying longer.
The most popular pages this month:
this stat mostly shows that our podcasts are the most popular single pages at Magnatune, and they're extremely popular. Classical podcasts dominate the list, but Jazz and Ambient also make it into the top 10.
Hourly breakdown of web site visits:
An hourly breakdown of our visits shows us to be most popular from 9am to 2pm pacific time, but there is a strong spike at 6am pacific time (which is 9am eastern time) and of course, 2pm pacific time is 5pm eastern time. So, we're most popular during office hours. However, even at 2am we've got a lot of visitors, which indicates a very international audience. Part of the smoothing is undoubtedly due to podcast downloader programs checking at random times, but I don't think that accounts for much of it, because that would be evenly distributed throughout the day.
Compare the chart above with this chart, which was our web site visitor's hourly breakdown in 2003:
Magnatune runs on a 100mbit feed and alternates daily between 25% usage on the low side, and 80% usage on the high side. The chart above shows 7 week's worth of data. The 80% max usage is where I expressly set it, by increasing/decreasing the number of allowed listeners on the shoutcast statsions. We could easily use another 100mbit line with more shoutcast listeners, but I haven't yet figured out how to convert those people effectively into paying customers, which is why I have not increased our bandwidth.
Overall conclusions for 2006:
- Web site visitor/day went up 50%
- Our podcasts are very popular
- Number of licenses/month went up 2.5x
- Consumer sales stabilized at 80% their pre-2006 levels, but didn't grow in 2006
- We are selling many more licenses, but at a lower average price
- Convert podcast and shoutcast radio listeners into paying customers
- Increase the average cost of a music license sold
New initiatives planned:
- Flash player (added December 10th, 2006)
- Album info (added Dec 29th 2006)
- Gift cards (added Dec 30th, 2006)
- Free-song-of-the-day (added January 1, 2007)
- Find songs by mood, to help higher-caliber licensors find music
- Subscription service
- Fill-your-ipod purchase option
- Shopping cart
- "Not Evil" music publishing
- All our music on iTunes, eMusic and others
- New provider for physical CDs, look like normal store purchased CDs
- Restaurant/shop paid music feeds & podcasts
- Selling physical CDs direct to shops