UPC vs ISRC… which one gets you best results for Spotify Pre-Saves?


Your new song or albums is coming out soon… you’re knee-deep in prep for release day… but then this:

To set up your Pre-Save, you need a UPC, ISRC or Spotify URI?! 🤯

Where do you get them?

And which one gets the best results?

Let’s dive into it…

​When you create a Pre-Save and your music hasn’t been released yet, there’s no URL to link to. That means you need to identify your music in a different way.

You may be able to request a Spotify URI for your unreleased track from your distributor. But there’s an easier and much faster way…

That’s where UPC (Universal Product Code) and ISRC (International Standard Recording Code) come into play…

These are typically assigned to your music automatically by your distributor. You can look them up in your online account from your distributor.

It’s easy to think “well, those are just different codes for the same music?”… but far from it.

These codes do different things!

A UPC code identifies your RELEASE… that means your entire product that is being released (for example an album, an EP, or a single)

ISRC codes identify specific TRACKS inside your release.

(Let’s say you release a 3-track EP. You will get one UPC code that identifies the EP. And you will get three ISRC codes. One for each individual track).

Both UPC and ISRC codes let you create a Pre-Save… but they give you very different results in Spotify!

👉 If you use an ISRC code to create your Pre-Save, fans will save your TRACK to their Liked Songs playlist in Spotify.

You can see these Saves you’re getting for your track in your Spotify For Artists account.

👉 If you use a UPC code to create your Pre-Save, fans will NOT save your track!

Instead, they will save your RELEASE to the Albums folder in their library in Spotify.

This is a big difference… and you CAN’T see these Saves you’re getting for your release in your Spotify For Artists account (see pic below).

So if your goal is to boost your track with pre-saves, use an ISRC code!

This is especially true if your release is a single with just one track on it.

If you want to boost your EP or album, use a UPC code.

Just consider that Pre-Saves for releases are typically less effective since your music does NOT go into your fans’ popular Liked Songs playlist on Spotify.

For best results, I recommend using an ISRC code for your Pre-Save!

And if you’re looking to learn more about high-impact Spotify promotion for your music, check out the Spotify Growth Engine video here.




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