Looking to launch your first website? Here are 10 quick things every musician can do to make your site compelling and effective:
1. Keep it small.
You don’t have to build a massive website for it to be great. In fact, I’d recommend keeping your website to less than 4 pages if you can. This will keep your message concise, and keep you from having to update a bunch of pages every time you want to refresh your site.
2. Keep it clear.
Make your message stab through like a knife from the home page to the contact page. Here’s what your website should answer in the first 10 seconds of a visit:
1. What do I do?
2. What have I done lately?
3. Do I create work with integrity?
4. What do I want the visitor to do?
3. Focus on content, not design.
If you create great content, they will come. Design is really important, but content will keep people coming back to your site for months to come. Stick with a basic design, and pick a web host that makes it easy to quickly upload cool pics, blogs, and videos.
4. Put your best content on the home page.
Don’t make people wade through a sea of pages to find your best content. Put a great photo, a video, or blog on your main front page. Remember, most of your visitors will never make it to any other page than this one. Make the visit count.
5. Make it simple.
Don’t clutter up your site with lots of side banners, pop ups, etc. Each page should have a single elegant message, and nothing more. The more direct and obvious you make your site, the more likely you’ll get a good response.
6. Don’t make people jump through hoops.
Make your contact info extremely obvious. If you’re playing a show, make it easy to see on a dedicated show calendar page. Don’t make people dig, because most people won’t.
7. Write in first person.
This is a personal preference, but if you’re maintaining your own website I recommend writing in first person to add a level of intimacy with the visitor. If you decide you want a more professional bent, get a great content writer to write the copy for your website. If you need help, email me and I’ll get you hooked up with several professional copy writers I recommend.
8. Encourage visitors to join your mailing list.
Email is still the best way to reach many people quickly with your message, and having a call to action on your site to join a mailing list is important. Once you get someone’s email address, make the subscription worth their while. Send out great content regularly to keep them engaged.
9. Have an online store, and sell cool stuff.
So many artists miss out on income by not having a great online store. Make one for free using www.square.com, and come up with cool things to sell. You’ll be amazed how much revenue you can generate with the right products.
10. Update weekly, if not daily.
The key to showing up in google searches is constantly updating your content. I recommend doing this with a blog or videos. Try to do this at least once a week to keep things fresh.