Best Way to Embed MP3s on Your Web Site

MP3s are reasonably big files. If they’re popular, their bandwidth usage adds up. All web hosting companies have bandwidth caps, whether stated or unstated. Even if it says unlimited bandwidth, trying using a few terabytes and see how long it takes for them to take down your site.

I’m surprised there are so many video and photo storage sites and almost no big music sharing sites. It’s probably the RIAA’s* fault.

The easiest solution for sharing MP3s on your site is DivShare. It’s a free service that lets you upload your file(s) then use their embedded link to play the song, show playing progress, length and control volume. The only negative is the unsightly divShare logo. Of course it’s a free service, so it makes perfect sense to get some publicity, but it’s still a negative. DivShare’s free service gives you 10GB a month of bandwidth and 5GB of total storage. That’s roughly equivalent to 1000 average-sized MP3s each played twice a month. Not bad. Here’s an example.

An alternative solution can be used if you host the MP3s on your server or use an online storage service that supports direct links. One such site is FileFreak. The free service limits files to 50MB each, total storage space to 1GB and daily bandwidth to 256MB.

To use this solution, upload the file to FileFreak then put the direct link to the file into one of the media players below. Then use the resulting HTML on your site.(Google Reader Media Player)

Yahoo Media Player and MusicPlayer are two other options. They both require including another script. That’s not required to use the Google Reader Media player.

*The MP3s you’re sharing should be ones you’ve created or are licensed to share, like podcasts, songs you’ve written, that sort of thing. These are not MP3s you’ve purchased or ripped from CDs. If the RIAA visited they should leave calmly and happily. Okay, they’d leave angry no matter what, but it would stem from not being able to make any money off you, not because they were going to sue your pants off.