Your website is your flyer—it represents your brand. It’s got to be fearless.
So how do you get one? You can do it yourself. There’s plenty of sites that let you do that. And then leave you alone to figure it out and keep it going.
You can hire someone to do it for you, which frees you up to create more music. Paying someone to build your website is an expense you can write off at tax time. Worth considering.
But no matter which way you choose to go, here’s what you need to know to build a website that will attract fans and win industry attention.
Keep it clean.
The design should be well laid out and professional looking. More words and less graphics. (Search engines crawl words easier.) Plus, too much bling gets in the way of your objective—to get people to listen to your music and surf your site for more. Don’t confuse them with a busy page.
Make sure the graphics you do choose accurately reflect you and your music. And make sure you’ve got social media hooked up, too. If you want search engine love, avoid animation, it interferes with SEO. And keep in mind the bigger the graphics, the longer it takes to load—and the easier it is to lose people. Which brings us to tip No. 2…
Make it easy.
User experience is primo. It’s all about popularity on the SEO scene. If your site is hard to navigate, it’s going to turn people off and they’ll find someone else to adore. Naturally, you’ll want people to be able to stream your latest song from your home page. You may want to dedicate a landing page to your playlist and one for CD orders (which involves adding a cart to your website, which will probably entail hiring tech help.) A Bio or About page can’t hurt, but a visible contact link on every page is vital for bookings. And a press page will help journalists get the word out about who you are and what you’re about.
Keep it consistent.
Make sure your site is built to be compatible with all devices—smart phones and tablets as well as laptops and computers. It’s a mobile world and you want fans to find you no matter where they are. If you’re using a DIY website builder, make sure the provider has this capability. Responsive website building is a little tricky.
Make it work for you.
Obviously, you want to build your fan base. So make sure you include a sign-in page that collects your visitors’ contact info so you can reach out to them with show dates and keep them engaged with updates to turn that visitor into a loyal fan.
The bottom line is that without a website you may as well be performing in your garage. Whether you go it alone as a DIYer or ask for help, it’s important to know the difference between slapping a few pages together and uploading them to the Web and building a world class, kick ass website that brings you to the top.Publisher: james ussery