Ditto vs Distrokid (Solved) By Someone Who’s Used Both

Both Ditto and Distrokid are platforms that have their advantages and drawbacks.

Distrokid and Ditto have identical pricing of $19.99/year for unlimited uploads and take 0% commission. Distrokid is Spotify’s preferred distributor. They offer things like verified profile, split payments and unlimited releases, but don’t collecting publishing royalties. Ditto aren’t Spotify preferred and don’t verify your profile. However, Ditto collect publishing royalties, and don’t have extra hidden costs.

While we’re on topic, if you’re interested to learn about more than just Ditto and Distrokid, consider checking out our full music distribution guide.

Ditto vs Distrokid Table Comparison:

DistrokidDitto
Price$19.99 Unlimited uploads
$35.99 Unlimited uploads + release date
$19/year Unlimited uploads
£29/year (2 artists)
£69/year (5 artists)
Stores150+160+
Content ID$4.95/Single – yearly
$14.95/Album – yearly
+ 20% of revenue
Free
Release DateRequires the $35.99 PlanFree
Bring Your Own ISRCRequires the $35.99 PlanFree
New Stores$7.95 per release – Per yearFree
Spotify Pre-save?YesYes
Insta, TikTok?YesYes
Commission0%0%
SoundCloud Monetisation?NoSelected People
YouTube MonetisationOptinOptin
Accepts Covers?YesYes

Ditto Music Distribution

It’s hard to deny that Ditto Music doesn’t have the best reputation among all major distribution services out there. While Ditto might’ve struggled in it’s early years, it’s steadily grown into what seems like the best option for DIY musicians.

Ditto is focused on the service of distribution. What you pay is what you get and there are no hidden fees you need to worry about (which isn’t the case with Distrokid, but we’ll talk about that later).

The best thing about Ditto music however, is how streamlined and seemingly artist-friendly the service has become.

Offering growth options for well-performing artists, such as Ditto’s own playlist, as well as Ditto Plus, which offers management and promotional services in exchange for a percentage of sales.

Artists like Chance The Rapper use Ditto Music as their main distributors for a reason. It’s friendly to the artists, while offering more platforms and stores than other services, for a flat fee of 19.99$

In addition to all this, Ditto Music does not collect any commissions from your sales, which means that there isn’t a large portion of your royalties, filling up the distributors pockets.

Payment Times & How To Get Paid From Ditto

One of the greater advantages of Ditto Music is how quickly you can get paid, in comparison to other distributors out there.

Users will need to have earned at least 25$, to withdraw anything from Ditto. That being said, you will need an account with Payoneer, Ditto’s payment partner, to be able to make any withdrawals. Luckily, this isn’t a difficult process, but we certainly would’ve loved an option to pay straight to PayPal.

As we mentioned before, Ditto does not take any of the artists streaming or download royalties, allowing artists to keep 100% of what you’ve earned.

Pros

✅ Unlimited Distribution

✅ Perfect for DIY Artists

✅ Over 200 music outlets and platforms to distribute to

✅ Ditto doesn’t take any royalties

✅ Ditto Plus allows you to trade a percentage of royalties for promotion and management

✅ Ditto Playlist

✅ VEVO and YouTube opportunities

✅ Transparent Costs

Cons

❌ Reported Customer Service Issues

❌ Lack of detailed information

❌ Not as feature-rich as Distrokid

Pricing

Essentially, Ditto costs the same as Distrokid, both offering unlimited uploads for a yearly fee of $19.99.

Ditto does not deal with any bait and switch tactics, giving you exactly what you signed up for and more.

You can also set up your own record label through Ditto. The starting price for this is 199$, which is followed by a premium package at 399$ and the most expensive, at 599$.

In addition to all this, there’s also the Ditto Music Publishing wing, which allows you to start earning publishing royalties, for around 50$

Distrokid Distribution

distrokid digital music distribution

Distrokid is arguably, THE most popular and widely adapted distribution aggregate platform out there. There are a tonne of people who would agree, including a number of comments and posts on forums like Reddit.

And rightfully so…

There aren’t any other distributors that provide as much as Distrokid does.

With tons of amazing features, like:

  • Distrokid Lock – ability to protect your songs from being stolen, by using an “acoustic fingerprint”.
  • Vault – back up files of your songs and projects.
  • Automatic Revenue Splits – useful for collabs where multiple people need a cut of the money.

The creator of TuneCore has publicly stated that he believes Distrokid is the better, faster and more easy to use platform. This just wouldn’t happen, if Distrokid wasn’t one of the best distributors.

tunecore founder's comments on distrokid distribution

That being said, Distrokid likes to bait people in with offers, that hide some of the truth. For example, on the surface, both Distrokid and Ditto offer unlimited uploads for $19.99.

When you look deeper however, there are things that Distrokid does to try to upsell you on the $35.99 subscription package.

Features such as setting a release date, or bring your own ISRC are all locked for the $19.99 subscribers.

In addition to this, artists will also be paying yearly fees, and 20% of revenue for Content ID, which is something Ditto does for free.

What saves Distrokid as a distribution service in 2021, is the amount of detail they provide. You can see pay-outs, per single stream, in excruciating detail, allowing you to see the country it came from & more.

This helps you to keep closer watch on your royalties and financials.

Distrokid used to be well-known for the efficiency and speed, that they got music onto the major streaming platforms and stores. In 2021 however, there isn’t much of a noticeable difference between digital distribution services, and their upload speeds.

However, Distrokid is a Spotify preferred distributor, so they will always get your music to Spotify quicker than the others.

Lastly, it needs to be mentioned that DistroKid are a large company, that employs a lot of smart marketing tactics to upsell artists on more expensive options.

And, it can get pretty expensive with the extras paid for each year (see pricing)

If you decide to use Distrokid, the $35.99 package is the one that makes more sense.

It’s worth taking a look at the pricing section below to see all the features you get with each plan before deciding to purchase a Distrokid yearly subscription.

Payment Times & How To Get Paid From Distrokid

Just like Ditto Music, Distrokid does not take any of your streaming or download royalties, letting you keep 100% of your money.

This is not including the Content ID system, which, if you’ve applied for it, will cost $5 per single and $15 per album, every year, plus 20% of revenue.

In comparison, Ditto Music does this for free.

Another drawback here is that withdrawals from DistroKid are tied to a fee.

PayPal withdrawals are $1 +$2 (up to $21), with international wire transfer fees being the highest at $26 per withdrawal.

That being said, unlike Ditto Music –

Withdrawing your earnings is as simple as selecting where you’re gonna send it, and boy is it quick!

Additionally, if you’re using PayPal, there is no minimum pay-out threshold, like there is on Ditto, which only allows for withdrawals over $25.

Pros

✅ Spotify Preferred distributor

✅ Instant Spotify blue check mark

✅ Credits & Liner Notes

✅ Automatic Revenue Splits

✅ Lyrics into Stores

✅ Excellent Analytics

✅ Keep 100% Royalties

Cons

❌ Can’t set a release date with $19.99 subscription.

❌ Extras can get pricey

❌ Less platforms on offer, than Ditto

❌ Bring Your Own ISRC requires the $35 subscription access

Pricing

Distrokid offers a wide range of payment plans, that include single artist/band plans, all the way to labels who have over 100 artists.

  • Musician ($19.99/year) – unlimited releases for 1 artist on all streaming platforms, keep 100% royalties. Distribution to China, pre-save links, video generator, playlist spinner & DistroLock, Vault, their social media. Can’t set release date in advance.
  • Musician Plus ($35.99/year) – unlimited track releases for 2 artists on all streaming platforms, keep 100% of royalties, and all above benefits. Can set release date in advance.
  • Label ($79.99/year+) – unlimited releases for 5 artists on all streaming platforms, keep 100% of revenue and all above benefits.

The fees Distrokid charge, rises from here for extra musicians added to the package. It goes all the way up to 100 bands/artists. It’s best to check their pricing to find out if you need extra artists.

Distrokid Extras pricing:

  • Shazam & iPhone Siri – $0.99/year/song.
  • Store Maximizer – $7.95/album/year (automatically delivers songs to new stores).
  • YouTube Content ID – $4.95/single/year.
  • Cover Song Licensing – $12/cover song.
  • Leave a legacy – $29/single/year or, $49/album/year (keep tracks up for life)
  • Tidal Master – $8.99/single or, $17.99/album (displays master badge on Tidal)

There are a lot of extras that can mount up when using Distrokid, and other platforms like Ditto provide for free.

Personally we have never bought anything but the Shazam extra.

If you decide to go for Distrokid, you can use our link to get 7% off 👇

It’ll help us keep the lights on around here 🙂

Can I Switch from Distrokid to Ditto or Vice Versa?

You can migrate from Distrokid to Ditto, or vice versa. You’ll need the ISRC codes from your current distributor, so you can move your music over to the new one. Once you have these, you can easily switch distribution provider to Distrokid or Ditto.

The most difficult part of switching distribution platforms, is usually migrating your music. That being said, it’s just like moving house. If you forget something after you moved out, it’s going to be tough to get it back.

So, to start off, the most important part of migrating a release to a different distribution service, your ISRC codes.

Every piece of released music has an ISRC code attached to it, this is like a unique passport for every song you have.

If you don’t have this passport, you can’t migrate your music, it’s that simple.

That being said, finding out your ISRC codes is quick and easy:

isrc code distrokid
IRSC code ditto

On Distrokid – press on your release and under the “Song” section, on the right hand side, you should be able to see your ISRC code, which looks something like this QZES62407514.

On Ditto – under your Release Details, at the bottom, where you see your track List, there should be an ISRC code next to each individual track.

These ISRC codes are attached to the original master file or .wav, of your track, so if you upload an updated version of the track, with the original ISRC, your release will fail.

It’s VITAL that before you migrate, you make sure that you have all of the original audio files, cover art and ISRC codes available. One mistake in this chain will lead to a failed release and make your migration a pain in the behind.

Additionally, make sure to write down the titles of all your tracks, the same way that you released them.

Capitalization matters here, as well as spacing and anything else. If your song was released as “Best Song”, but you re-upload it as “best song”, there’s a chance that your release will fail.

Ok, now that you have the original audio files, cover art, ISRC codes and the original titles written down, you’re ready to re-upload your music.

First, make sure you’ve taken down the songs from your previous digital distribution platform.

If your songs are still online and you upload them again through a different distributor, you’ll run into a lot of troubles, failed releases etc. Before you’re uploading your music, make sure it’s no longer on Spotify, Apple Music or anywhere else.

After this, it should be as simple as uploading a new release on the distribution platform of your choice.

You’ll have to re-enter all the information as well as individual ISRC codes for your songs, but other than that, the process is identical to uploading any other release.

If you’re having any issues with migrating to new distributors, contact their customer service, who’ll be more than happy to assist your migration process.

Ditto vs Distrokid – Which Is Better?

So the big question at hand, which one is better at the end of the day, Ditto or Distrokid?

Here’s a quick verdict of Ditto vs Distrokid:

Distrokid and Ditto have identical pricing of $19.99/year for unlimited uploads and take 0% commission. Distrokid is Spotify’s preferred distributor. They offer things like verified profile, split payments and unlimited releases, but don’t collecting publishing royalties. Ditto aren’t Spotify preferred and don’t verify your profile. However, Ditto collect publishing royalties, and don’t have extra hidden costs.

However, it’s not as black-and-white as you might’ve hoped.

Different people will prefer a different platform. While we might like Ditto better, you might be super into the features that Distrokid offers.

That being said, there are some major features and attributes that we would keep in mind, when trying to figure out which one is better.

First off, money…

If you’re looking for the best bang-for-your-buck option, Ditto Music is undoubtedly better.

While on the surface, both platforms offer a $19.99 plan with unlimited uploads. Distrokid does not allow you to set a release date, without paying for the more expensive plan.

While you might think that it’s not that big of a deal, it’s arguably the biggest deal, when it comes to generating success with your independent release.

Most generated and curated playlists on Spotify require at least 10 days advance before the release date, to get your music reviewed.

In the modern music landscape, getting into these playlists can be what stands between you and your first million listens.

If you’re into the idea of spending $20 for an entire year of unrestricted uploads, go for Ditto, simple as that.

Ditto Music also distributes your music on far more platforms and download stores, than Distrokid.

If your song or album gets big for users in China, you’ll want your music on Tencent, as to not lose any streaming royalties you might be getting.

Having your music on as many streaming platforms and stores as possible, so that you can cover all these markets, whether china, Africa or Europe. In addition to this, you can also get promotional services as an artist, which can be extremely helpful for new musicians.

In our opinion, the $35.99 plan is mandatory, when you’re signing up for Distrokid.

Without it you won’t be able to set a Release Date, or migrate your music from a different distribution platform.

With Distrokid, you’re also getting a great customer support experience, as well as extremely detailed analytics, down to per-stream pay-outs, and incredibly fast bank transfer times.

While Ditto offers more with it’s cheapest subscription, Distrokid still pulls ahead, when it comes to sheer amount of features and options.

At the end of the day, both of these services are amazing, and a great way to make releasing music more accessible to the every-day person.

Which one you choose is ultimately your decision and stating out-right that Ditto is better than Distrokid or vice-versa, would be disingenuous.

For example Harry here uses Distrokid, and Toms (me) uses Ditto! We like both for different reasons.

So, which would you like, Sir? The Distrokid, or the Ditto? 👇

Finishing Up

Whether you end up choosing Ditto Music or Distrokid as your streaming distributors of choice is up to you. Both offering their own advantages and drawbacks, these companies have become the industry standards for independent music distribution.

So if you’ve been spending hours on your song or album and want to have the world listen to it, take advantage of what these platforms offer.

Never has it been this easy, to get going in the music industry, get your music on streaming platforms and start making money from it.

Now it’s all up to you, can you make the next big hit?

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