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End of Year Deadlines for Digital Music Distribution 2023

  • 30 November 2023, Thursday
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The end of the year is coming. Are your releases ready? Not only are the last six weeks of the year the busiest time to release music, many shops and streaming platforms are closed or have limited support during the winter holidays. If you have releases planned in December or early January, take a look at the deadlines and tips below to make sure your release plan goes, well, according to plan.

How to guarantee your release gets out on time?

In creating these deadlines, we’ve taken the deadlines set by the stores and added a few days to conduct a quality assurance check, process, and send your tracks to the stores and platforms. Please bear in mind that these are hard deadlines. That means your release has to meet the release requirements, with the music uploaded in the proper format, the album artwork approved, and everything submitted by this date. Also, if there are problems with the quality of your release or we don’t have everything we need when you submit, your release might not meet store or platform deadlines — so submit early!

Please note: Express and Priority delivery are not available between December 15th, 2023, and January 2nd, 2024.

EOY Dates iMusician

Deadlines for Music Distribution 2023

Why the end of the year distribution deadlines?

The last six weeks of the year are the busiest time for releases. This is, in part, because artists and labels want to have their releases available for the big holiday shopping season. It’s also the final push to release something before the end of the year. Also, many stores are not open between December 24th and January 2nd.

What about submitting to Spotify at the end of the year?

On average, Spotify delivers more than 100,000 tracks per day — so imagine what it’s like during the end-of-the-year rush. Typically, Spotify recommends submitting your track to their playlist editors two to four weeks before the release date. With the holiday madness, you’ll probably want to shoot for earlier rather than later. Remember, it can take a few days from when we send it to them for your release to appear in your upcoming releases on your Spotify for Artists profile.

What if I need support or a change to my release during the holidays?

Please note that due to the winter holidays, we will have limited support from December 22nd, 2023 through January 2nd, 2024. During these dates, you might experience support request response times longer than usual. Our Artist & Label Relations Team won't be available on Monday, December 25th as well as Tuesday, December 26th 2023.

Also note that most stores and streaming platforms will have limited support, which could cause all change requests to take longer than usual.

If you have questions about the upcoming deadlines or how to prepare, join us in our community and discuss it with hundreds of independent musicians and labels.

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