We all know that getting a song added to an editorial or algorithmic playlist on Spotify can help boost streams and lead to more fans discovering your music. It’s well documented that you need to submit your upcoming releases for editorial submission via either Spotify For Artists or Spotify Analytics. But how do you get on the popular algorithmic playlists like Release Radar and Discover Weekly? The answer, in part at least is to have great save rates.
So what is a Spotify save rate? The save rate is the number of times somebody saves a song to their Spotify library divided by total number of listeners (a save is defined by Spotify as when a user saves a song to their library or adds it to one of their own playlists btw).
So in the Spotify for Artists dashboard screenshot above users have saved a particular song 25.3k times and has had 258.6k listeners during the same period. If you divide saves by listeners (25.3k / 258.6k) then multiply by 100 you get a save rate of 9.78%.
What makes a good save rate then I hear you ask? Well Spotify don’t publish any guidelines here but I’m going to go out on a limb and say anything above 10% as being “good”. During my years of studying stats for hundreds of artists I typically see save rates of between 3% to 7% on average.
This 10% figure seems to be backed up by singer.songwriter Steve Benjamins who posted this excellent blog post on how he earns $400 a month from Discover Weekly playlists. In his post he published some stats that show that his songs with the highest save rates are the songs that get featured in Discover Weekly most.
Of course the next question is how as an artist do you get good save rates? Apart from releasing brilliant music that people love so much that they want to save it, I would definitely recommend using a pre-save tool (as I have written about before) as these make it easy for your fans to add your music to their library and hence increase your save rates.
Finally, there is one big caveat to this whole article and that nobody knows exactly how to get your music featured on algorithmic Spotify playlists. Using anecdotal evidence we can presume that having healthy save rates is a factor but we also hear that having low skip rates, getting playlisted on independent playlists, people sharing your music on social networks, having a strong following of fans on Spotify and other factors all contribute towards the algorithms “liking” your music. In short, do it all, there are no short cuts!