CD Baby – an outstanding customer experience

Derek Silvers, president of CD Baby, knows how to make a customer smile. Furthermore, his concern for delivering value to the customer made me want to spread the word about this little online record store that only sells CDs by independent musicians.

I have written posts before about the advantage a small company has over large companies in developing close relationships with customers. That advantage can be summed up as the ability to engage in meaningful communication at a personal level.

Derek’s company, CD Baby, engages customers in real communication and it is no wonder that word is spreading about this unusual online CD store.


It isn’t the logo that captures your attention, it’s the attention to detail in every email Derek sends out. Even the automated emails seem friendly, and that is masterful work. Additionally, Derek delivers what he promises, which is a great way to establish immediate trust.

Here are a few things that make this store worth supporting:

They only sell CDs that come directly from the musicians. No distributors. Musicians send them CDs. They warehouse them, sell them to you, and pay the musicians directly.

In a regular record deal or distribution deal, musicians
only make $1-$2 per CD, if they ever get paid by their label. When
selling through CD Baby, musicians make $6-$12 per CD, and get paid

In business, and thriving, since March 1998. They’re the largest seller of independent CDs on the web.

Current Numbers:

   * 77,986 artists sell their CD at CD Baby.

   * 1,334,257 CDs sold online to customers.

   * $10,826,357.88 paid to artists.

bad for an enterprise that started with Derek selling his own CDs and
then selling CDs made by his friends. As he says, "CD Baby was just me.
I’d put the day’s orders in my backpack and ride my bike down to the
post office.."

You can read more about CD
Baby on the website, but you should buy a CD by one of their many
artists to get the full effect of their service. I was introduced to CD
Baby when I bought a Sheryl Warner album. The album was great, but the service was so  unexpectedly satisfying. that I will be back for more music.

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