I’ve looked through a huge selection of band websites, from the professional sites designed by high-tech designers to the free sites you will discover at MySpace or Facebook. Out of this research, I’ve learned several simple techniques to designing an internet site that serves its purpose. There are two purposes to every band website: first, to market your band; and second, to sell your CDs or digital downloads. If your website does any less, you’re selling yourself short. So let’s get started with 12 hot tips on the best way to turn your website right into a money maker.
1. KIS. Keep it simple. Websites should not be flashy. You can try to impress people who have killer graphics and dazzling animation, but whatever you are doing is limiting the amount of fans who will visit your site. I can’t tell you how many times I stopped trying to surf a website that exposed with some fancy FLASH or gave you a blank page with a pop-up. That’s popular with the Major Labels, but more surfers find it necessary to use pop-up stoppers because too many people use pop-ups to provide SPAM.
2. Use consistent navigation. It doesn’t ultimately matter where you put your navigation bar, but be consistent. Place it at the side or the surface of the page and give it quick and easy access. Also realize that search engines need clear and easy paths if they’re going to navigate your website, and search engine traffic is something every website should make an effort to gain.
3. Know your market. You can not be all things to all people, so focus on a distinct segment. If you play death metal music, cater each page to that style of music. Submit your website to those websites that connect to that market. Exchange links with bands in your market.
4. Include your contact information. Just like with regular press kits, your site should be packed filled with contact information for your band, including a booking phone number, a mailing address, fax number if possible, and an email address. There is nothing more frustrating than needing to search a website just to find the owner’s email address. Post your contact info in the bottom of every page of one’s site, along with your email. Offer the option to send from the form AND a hot linked email address easily entirely on your pages.
5. Keep graphics to reasonable size. I’ve high-speed internet access, but the vast majority of the planet does not. Most of those who don’t, don’t want to wait two minutes for your graphics to load. Optimize your graphics so that they are under 30k, as well as your visitors will be even happier with your band when they get to the music and information in a reasonable amount of time.
6. Add a newsletter. Unless you have a newsletter, you’re selling yourself short. Many folks don’t buy immediately. They wait before time is right. Encourage your visitors to join up by offering incentives like free MP3s, discounts on a CD, free ringtones or notification of upcoming gigs. Distribute your newsletter on a regular basis to get your visitors excited about learning more about YOU. Use RSS feeds to easily allow for subscription to your latest news.
7. Regularly Add content. People need a reason to come back to visit you, or they may just forget about you. Include regular news updates on your own site, a journal, chat room, or discussion board. Create a sense of community so that your visitors will want to keep coming back again and again.
8. Get a domain name. I know you don’t want to spend a lot of money on an internet site, but a domain name is essential for any professional band, and you can purchase one as for less than $10 per year these days.
9. Use META Tags. It seems that increasing numbers of people are forgetting to utilize META tags on their web pages. Despite the fact that se’s no more weigh them heavily in their algorithms, they’re still used to find out how well your site will rank.
10. Make it easy to accept payment. If you don’t take credit cards on your website, you are losing sales! There are still a lot of great ways to accept payment through bank cards. Paypal, for example, lets you setup a straightforward customizable store on your website, and on top of that they only have a very minuscule little bit of the sale. Customers need not have a Paypal account to order.
11. Content, Content, Content. If you’ve been to any http://mp3paw.io marketing websites, you should have heard how important relevant content is for the website. This remains as important now as it as ever was. Good content on your website will sell your music products. This might mean streaming or downloadable MP3s, articles about your style of music, reviews of bands playing your look of music, or great ad copy which will sell your products. Great content is what makes a great website. If you have information or resources that are useful, you will develop repeat visitors. This can ultimately result in more sales.
12. Add a Links page. Many websites require you to add a reciprocal link from your own website in order to be added to theirs. Be sure you set up a links page to trade links with other websites.