How Much Does Spotify Pay Per Stream?

Spotify as we all know is one of the most famous digital music services across the globe. Not only songs but Spotify also provides podcasts, exclusive playlists, and other exclusive services. However, have you ever wondered if you can also earn from the app you daily listen to songs from? Yes, it is very much possible through Spotify Pay. The app pays according to the streams you have made. But how much does Spotify pay per stream? And above that what is Spotify pay per stream? Let us address all your concomitant queries pertinent to Spotify pay per stream.

Many musicians are genuinely curious about how much they can make through Spotify streaming. However, to everyone’s knowledge, there is no fixed amount that Spotify pays. The amount Spotify pays depends on the creator and the country the creator belongs to. That is why it is essential to have a look at the royalty calculator that more or less decides the amount a creator takes home. Hence, the Spotify pay per stream, we should also see every other detail essential for a creator to make money.

Does Spotify Pay its Creators/ Artists?

Yes! Spotify pays royalties to artists and rights holders based on the number of streams their music receives. The payment per stream can vary and is influenced by several factors. This includes the user’s subscription type, the country where the streams occur, and the artist’s specific royalty agreement with Spotify. Additionally, royalties are typically paid to the rights holders. Such right holders are recorded labels or distributors, who then distribute the earnings to the artists based on their contracts.

While platforms like Spotify generate significant revenue from recorded music, artists must take proactive steps to promote their music. This can also boost streaming numbers, thereby enhancing their income. By utilizing effective strategies to increase streams and negotiating favorable terms with platforms through music labels, artists can potentially improve their earnings. Nevertheless, it is important to acknowledge that the impact of these efforts may be limited. The same is applicable only if the average payment per stream remains disproportionately low.

How Does Spotify Pay its Creators?

Spotify generates money from both free users as well as premium subscribers. This is because when free users stream ads, Spotify generates royalty. On the other hand, the money paid by premium users is another source of income. However, Spotify does not pay the artists directly. Spotify pays the users through the company that has rights over the music. The producing company then distributes it to the artists. But how are the royalties distributed and what are the kinds of royalties we have? Let us see!

1. Recording Royalties: These royalties are paid to the artists and the record labels for the use of the recorded performance of a song. When an artist records a song and signs with a record label, they typically enter into a contract that outlines the terms for the use and distribution of their recorded music. Recording royalties are typically based on the number of units sold, streamed, or downloaded, and are paid to the artists and the record label based on their contractual agreements.

2. Publishing Royalties: Publishing royalties, also known as mechanical royalties or songwriter royalties, are paid to songwriters, composers, and publishers for the use of the underlying musical composition or lyrics. When a song is created, the rights to the composition are typically owned by the songwriter or shared among multiple songwriters.

Once Spotify pays the rights holders, it does not have control over how the money is divided. Similar to other streaming platforms, Spotify follows a stream share model for royalty payments, rather than a per-stream rate. This means that the revenue generated by streams is distributed among the rights holders based on their share of the total streams for a given period.

How Much Does Spotify Pay Per Stream?

It is crucial to understand that Spotify does not pay artists based on a fixed rate per stream. Instead, it is necessary to consider how Spotify generates revenue to determine how much they pay per stream. Spotify operates with a dual revenue model: a free service supported by advertisements and a paid subscription service that offers ad-free streaming and offline listening, among other features. The company earns income from both sources, with advertising contributing significantly to its earnings.

The amount that Spotify pays per stream can vary greatly due to several factors. These factors include the artist’s royalty rate, the location of the streaming activity, and the type of Spotify account utilized.

On average, Spotify typically pays between $0.003 and $0.005 per stream, which translates to $3 to $5 for every 1,000 streams. It is important to note that these figures are averages and can differ significantly based on the factors mentioned above. Artists may receive higher royalty rates based on their specific agreements, while others may earn lower amounts due to contractual arrangements with record labels and other entities.

What is Spotify Royalty Calculator?

Officially, there is nothing a Royalty calculator that exists, but instead, there is a payment structure or model. However, these models sheerly depend upon certain factors that form the royalty calculator. These royalty calculators typically ask for inputs such as the number of streams, the country where the streams occur, the artist’s royalty rate or revenue share percentage, and the type of Spotify subscription (free or premium).

Using these inputs, the calculator attempts to estimate the potential royalty earnings based on publicly available information and assumptions about Spotify’s royalty payment structure. It’s important to note that these calculators can only provide rough estimates and may not accurately reflect the actual royalty payments from Spotify. The exact calculation of royalties is complex and depends on various factors, including the user’s location, the artist’s specific agreements, and the current royalty rates set by Spotify.

How to earn more money from Spotify streams?

If you’re an artist looking to earn more money from Spotify streams, here are some strategies you can consider several features. Firstly, increase your streams. The more streams you accumulate, the more revenue you can potentially earn. Focus on promoting your music and building a dedicated fanbase through social media, live performances, collaborations, and targeted marketing campaigns. Secondly, encourage playlist placements.

Getting your songs featured on popular Spotify playlists can significantly boost your streams. Research relevant playlists in your genre and reach out to curators or consider using services that help with playlist placements. Thirdly, engage with your audience. Building a strong connection with your listeners is important for long-term success. Engage with your fans on social media, respond to comments, and create a sense of community around your music.

This can lead to increased streams and support from loyal fans. Lastly, utilize Spotify for Artists: Spotify for Artists is a platform that provides valuable insights and tools to help you promote your music. It allows you to pitch your unreleased music for editorial playlist consideration, customizes your artist profile, and access data about your listeners. Take advantage of these features to optimize your presence on Spotify.

Factors That Affect Spotify Royalty Rates

As mentioned above, it must be crystal clear that there are certain factors on which the royalty rates run. If an artist amplifies these factors, he/she can do well in the Spotify royalty rates. These factors are-

  1. Streaming Service: Different streaming services may have varying royalty rates. While Spotify is one of the largest streaming platforms, other services like Apple Music, Amazon Music, and Tidal may offer different rates. Artists should consider the distribution of their music across multiple platforms to maximize their earnings.
  2. Listener’s Location: The country in which the streaming activity takes place can impact the royalty rates. Spotify’s royalty rates may vary based on regional factors, such as the market’s size, music consumption habits, and licensing agreements with local collecting societies.
  3. User’s Account Type: Spotify offers both free ad-supported accounts and premium subscription accounts. Royalty rates can differ depending on whether the stream comes from a free user or a premium subscriber. Premium accounts generally provide higher royalty rates since they generate more revenue for the platform.

Top Earning Artists on Spotify

Spotify does not disclose the exact total earnings of artists on their platform, as they state they do not know how rights holders distribute the money. However, Spotify did share some information regarding artist earnings in 2021. They revealed that more than 1,000 artists earned over $1 million from their music on Spotify, indicating significant income from the platform.

Additionally, they mentioned that over 50,000 artists earned at least $10,000 solely from Spotify, highlighting the potential for artists to generate substantial revenue through streaming on the platform. It’s important to note that these figures represent a portion of the artist community on Spotify and may not reflect the earnings of all artists on the platform.

  1. Drake with $199,101,196
  2. Bad Bunny with $175,102,764
  3. Ed Sheeran with $151,212,693
  4. The Weeknd with $137,393,637
  5. Justin Bieber with $128,793,928
  6. Taylor Swift with $128,432,368
  7. Ariana Grande with $128,380,013
  8. Eminem with $120,764,069
  9. Post Malone with $118,488,889
  10. BTS with $112,878,940


Spotify does not have a fixed pay per stream rate for artists. The amount that artists earn per stream on Spotify can vary significantly based on multiple factors. These factors include the artist’s royalty rate, the country where the stream occurred, the type of Spotify account used (free or premium), and the specific contractual agreements between the artist, record labels, and distributors.

On average, Spotify typically pays between $0.003 and $0.005 per stream, which equates to $3 to $5 for every 1,000 streams. However, these figures are only averages, and the actual payout can vary considerably. Artists need to diversify their revenue streams, engage with their audience, seek playlist placements, and stay informed about royalties and licensing to maximize their earnings on Spotify and other streaming platforms.

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