YouTube unveils new merchandising features for musicians
The ability to "broadcast yourself" has long made YouTube an attractive destination for budding musicians, as well as fans wanting to share fresh content and original tracks with viewers around the world.
And with reports that 800 million people visit the site per month, it is no wonder that those working behind the scenes at YouTube are looking at new ways for fans and artists to interact.
In the upcoming weeks, new merchandise features that are being rolled out will help musicians with their own YouTube channel to sell directly to their online viewers.
This means that fans will be able to "buy artists' merchandise, digital downloads, concert tickets and even unique experiences like meetups" from the website.
The new features, which have been made available through partnerships with a number of e-commerce vendors, will enhance the broadcasters business activities within the online music and entertainment market.
Collaborations with iTunes and Amazon will allow YouTube users to download music they like, while the entertainment company Songkick will work in the area of concerts, at the same times as Topspin has specialised in selling tickets and fan experiences on the site.
In an official statement from YouTube, the company told users its latest round of developments would benefit individuals at the start of their career, as well as seasoned professionals to grow its fan base.
The Merch Store is also expected to help musicians stay commercially viable in a market that can often be unforgiving when it comes to profitability, with relatively few groups earning enough to work as full-time musicians.
In a statement on its official blog, YouTube said: "Whether you're the main event, the opener or jamming from your living room, we want to give you the chance to find an audience and make music your careen on YouTube."