When you decide that its time to download music off the Internet, it can be a complete nightmare when starting to look.
The issue of downloading illegal music makes the situation even worse, and so you are left in the dark and end up either not downloading any music, or spending money on several different sites hoping that they will fit your needs.
We are all aware of the major music download sites, such as Napster and iTunes which are the sites that pop into your head when you think of downloading music, but there are many other sites out there that give you the same choice and quality at a much cheaper price, or even for free.
This is because those companies are smaller, with fewer overheads and advertising costs and therefore they can afford to lower their prices and achieve a competitive advantage over the major players.
In fact, many of these cheaper sites only charge a one-off small time fee and from there you can download as much free music as you wish. There are no restrictions on the volume of music that you can download or on the speed at which you download.
These sites give you almost unlimited freedom.
On the other hand, the well-known sites that I mentioned earlier often charge you per song, which can mount up to a serious amount of money (almost the same as buying a CD in a shop).
Furthermore, they have restrictions on download speeds and volumes which can be extremely frustrating; especially when you have paid a decent amount of money.
You might be asking yourselves why the big brand name companies charge more than these other sites and I have been pondering this for a long time.
I think it maybe due to the fact that these companies are so well-known, and they are aware of this. Consequently, they are confident that the majority of people looking for a music download service will come to them, and pretty much only them because of the trust people have for a brand.
Through knowing this, they realize they can charge a little extra than others without losing much custom.
We all know that brands are more expensive than non-brand items and most of the time non-brand items are of the same or even higher quality.
As an example, when I go to the supermarket, there are certain products that I buy which are non-branded; not solely because I need to save money, but because I know that this certain product is of the same quality if not higher quality. Therefore, in this case why not save?
The point is, there are free music download sites out there that have been positively reviewed by many happy customers. They offer you an alarming range of mp3s to download from, up to 14 million in some cases.
Furthermore, the speed at which you download the music is lightning and there are no download limits. If you wish to burn the music onto a CD then they can offer you this option as well online support.
If you check the sites ranking on alexa.com you will see that the best ones are ranked in the top 10,000 most desired sites on the Internet. Personally I find this extremely impressive for just a music download site, especially when Napster is ranked in the 50,000s.
This traffic knowledge for me reinforces if a site is creditable or not.
It is therefore important for me to state that you can find top of the range free music download sites, but you must be careful before pulling out your credit cards and giving them your money.
My advice would be to check their traffic rankings on alexa.com in order to find out whether there are actually people using the site or not.
Also, I would recommend doing a search on google for reviews of a particular site you come across. It might be that previous customers have given good or bad reviews on the site, in a forum for example.
That will consequently sway your decision.