How to Get Streaming Audio on Tumblr

by David Wayne
Jochen Sand/Photodisc/Getty Images

Tumblr includes an option to stream audio from a cloud storage account, enabling you to bypass the daily 10MB limit for uploading audio files. The process is fairly straightforward, although first you must subscribe to a cloud storage service and upload music to your account. Most services offer a free subscription with various bandwidth and storage limits, depending on the service.

Choose a Cloud Storage Service

Choose a cloud storage service that offers public links to files; the best service for you depends on how many songs you want to stream and the amount of traffic your blog receives. To open an account, visit a site such as SoundCloud, Dropbox or SugarSync and start a subscription (links in Resources). A free Dropbox subscription includes 2GB of storage and up to 20GB of daily streaming, while a paid account includes up to 500GB of storage and 200GB of daily streaming. SugarSync offers a free 5GB subscription with 10GB of daily streaming, while paid subscriptions offer up to 250GB of daily streaming. SoundCloud doesn't limit your streaming bandwidth but does limit your storage space, depending on your subscription. A free SoundCloud account includes 120 minutes of audio storage.

Upload Your Music Library

After creating an account, upload music following the same steps for each service. Click the “Upload” button on the main account page and select a track from your computer. When you upload a song, your account page displays a public link to the file. Dropbox automatically displays the link, but you must click “Share” to view it in SugarSync or SoundCloud.

Open a separate browser tab, visit Tumblr and sign in to your account. Select the blog on which you want to stream music and click the “Audio” tab. Choose “External URL” and paste the song's public link in the address box. After you paste the link, several options are displayed in the window. Enter a song title in the Title box, then click “Add Album Art” to upload a picture from your computer, if you have album artwork. The track is immediately embedded in Tumblr's built-in audio player on your blog when you click “Post.”

Embed a Streaming Playlist

Many streaming music sites provide a link to share a playlist on your blog. Visit a site such as Spotify, Pandora or Grooveshark to open an account (links in Resources). Embed a Spotify widget on your blog by right-clicking any song, album or playlist on the site and choosing “Copy Spotify URL.” Visit the Spotify Play Button page, paste the URL in the address box and copy the HTML code that is generated in the text box (link in Resources). Embed a Pandora playlist by visiting the Pandora Blog Feeds page, selecting a sidebar template, entering your email address in the Listener's Email field and clicking “Generate HTML” (link in Resources). Embed a Grooveshark playlist by creating or viewing a playlist, clicking “Share,” choosing “More” and selecting “Embed." Return to your Tumblr page, select your blog and click “Edit HTML.” Paste the copied code anywhere within the HTML body and click “Save.” Your streaming widget is immediately published to your blog.

Monitor Your Blog's Traffic

Add Google Analytics to your blog to ensure you don't exceed your streaming bandwidth limit. Visit the Google Analytics site and create a new account (link in Resources). After you create an account, a tracking code is displayed. Copy this code and open your Tumblr dashboard in a new browser tab. Choose your blog, click “Edit HTML” and paste the tracking code before the closing “</head>” tag. Monitor your blog's traffic by logging in to Google Analytics and selecting your blog from the main account page. While these metrics don't provide specific information about your streaming bandwidth, they can tell you how many visitors have viewed your page. If your blog receives more than 2,000 page views per day, look into a paid cloud storage subscription to avoid having your account banned due to using excessive bandwidth.

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