By now, you probably already know that it’s a good idea to build a website for your band or music project. You know that doing so provides you with greater control over how you come across on the web, stops other bands with the same name from luring all your fans to them with a craftily-purchased domain name, and that it can be a great starting point for those fans to find everything they want from you all in one place.
You also know that it doesn’t necessarily have to cost you a lot of money. Just about every band we’ve ever met has known at least one person capable of creating a good looking website for them, and even if you don’t, you’ve already done your research and found that there’s some great online website builders out there that will help you to create professional standard sites for very little, possibly even free.
What you may not yet know is exactly what you’re going to put on that website. There’s so many possibilities and so many different tools out there to help you do just about anything you could possibly hope to achieve with a website that it isn’t always obvious what to add and what to leave out.
An easy to use gig calendar
Sure, you could always just type out a list of upcoming shows and post them on a static page, but imagine the chore of having to go back to that list on a regular basis, constantly deleting old shows (or at least archiving them) to make your upcoming dates more prominent, and then adding new ones for weeks and months down the line.
That’s before we even start to mention the hassle of amending the list when gigs get cancelled or plans change.
The easier way is to add a proper calendar to your website, one which makes inputting and amending gig data quick and painless, and which will always display your upcoming shows most prominently, without you having to do a thing.
Whether you’re using a website building tool or creating your site on a platform like WordPress, you’ll find lots of third-party apps available to make promoting your gigs online that much easier.
A way to contact you
Whether it’s fans looking to send you love letters or promoters looking to book you for a show, you’re going to need a quick and easy way for them to get in touch with you. Don’t forget to include a contact form and, if possible, put a phone number up there.
Again, most sitebuilders and Content Management Systems will have tools you can use to add contact details. If not, there’s a range of quality products you can use. Jotform for example, makes adding a contact form to your website as easy as you could hope for, and does it all without charging you a penny or adding unsightly advertising to your site.
An online store
These days, creating your own online shop isn’t as complicated, expensive nor time consuming as it once was. Nor do you need to rely on third party sites like iTunes and cdBaby to sell your music, whilst another company entirely sells your t-shirt and other merch.
Sure, there’s benefits to be had to your group by still keeping your tracks on iTunes, but there’s even greater benefits for your fans when you create your own online shop using a platform like Shopify or your site-builders own inbuilt eCommerce tools.
That you’re in it for the music and not the money goes without saying, but still, being in a band isn’t exactly cheap, and any money you can make from selling downloads, physical CDs or T-shirts can always go towards paying for transport to your next gig, or even your website itself.