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Is SoundCloud Dead?

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In August 2017, Digital Music News published an article written by Paul Resnikoff suggesting that SoundCloud was en route to its end.

SoundCloud had lost nearly 100 million monthly visits (going from 400 million to 300 million). The article suggested that this trend was likely to continue, and within the next couple years, SoundCloud would be obsolete.

Almost 2 years have passed since the article came out and lately, I haven’t heard much about SoundCloud. Back in high school, all my friends would send me song suggestions exclusively through SoundCloud. Now however, all their recommendations come from Spotify or Youtube. To me, this was a sign that SoundCloud was dead.

But is it really dead?

Sure, SoundCloud was on a seemingly rapid decline, but recent data suggests that their loss of daily views has tapered immensely.

SimilarWeb: SoundCloud traffic

SoundCloud’s traffic data from 2018 shows that in August, a year after Resnikoff‘s article, SoundCloud was sitting around 272 million monthly visits. That is a 28 million drop in viewership from the previous year.

Compared to 2017, where SoundCloud lost 100 million users, 28 million is not that large of a number, hinting that 2017 may have been the height of SoundCloud’s losses, for now.

Still by December 2018, just six months later, SoundCloud had lost another 25 million monthly views, suggesting another spike in loss rates. This is no reason to believe SoundCloud is vanishing.

SoundCloud traffic data from Alexa (Amazon)

However, Amazon statistics show that globally, SoundCloud fluctuated between 115th and 105th place for most visited website in 2018. Further data from SimilarWeb.com shows that SoundCloud is currently the number two website for music streaming, right behind Spotify. Just because SoundCloud is losing members, does not mean it is dying.

More realistically, SoundCloud’s loss of numbers is probably related to the rise of other streaming services, such as BandCamp and Tidal. With more options presently available, it is no surprise that some people are leaving SoundCloud for other services.

Besides, SoundCloud rap is still in high demand. In 2018, 7 of the top 10 most streamed tracks were from rappers who got famous off of the website.

Top ten most liked tracks on SoundCloud 2018

Artists like Juice WRLD, Trippie Redd, and even the late XXXTentacion, would have never gotten the fame they have today if not for SoundCloud. The app provided a free platform for them to express themselves and is now paving the way for artists like, Youngboy Never Broke Again, and Blueface, two of the most highly anticipated up-and-coming rappers.

Yes, SoundCloud has diminished in numbers in recent years, but it is still a vital streaming service for lesser-known artists to gain exposure, which is why the website won’t be dying anytime soon.

Sources:

“Soundcloud.com Traffic Statistics.” Sephora.com Traffic, Demographics and Competitors – Alexa, 2019, www.alexa.com/siteinfo/soundcloud.com.

“Soundcloud.com Traffic Statistics.” SimilarWeb, Similarweb Blog, Dec. 2018, www.similarweb.com/website/soundcloud.com.

Daniel Friedland

Daniel Friedland

Journalism Intern at Red Roll
I am a sophomore English student at DePaul University. Previously, I studied Music Business and Recording Technology at University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. My love for music goes beyond just journalism, as I have played the violin since I was 3. When I'm not involved with writing or music, I can be found playing on the DePaul Ultimate frisbee team.
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