The Basic Elements EVERY Band Website Should Have
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The Basic Elements EVERY Band Website Should Have

– Sometimes I find a really great new band that I wanna check out, but when I go online I can’t
find anything about them. Hey everyone, my name is James, and this is the Better Band Bureau. I frequently see this when I discover new artists on Bandcamp. I’ll look for those artists elsewhere, to find out more information, and try to find a Facebook
page or a website, but it just doesn’t exist. And while sites like Bandcamp are great for having your music, they don’t really contain
a lot of information about your band. But it’s always smart
to put an outside link. But when you don’t put an outside link, and I have to manually search for it, and then still can’t find
anything, that’s not good. That means other people are probably also trying to search for you and can’t find you. Why is Bandcamp not really
good as your home base for your online presence? To start, you can’t update
your fans through Bandcamp. You also can’t upload any photos, aside from album art and the banner. And last but not least, you’re locked into a very
limited set of choices, for the design of your site. What do I suggest instead? A good website. Wix is a popular option for lots of people because it’s very easy, but it is a little pricey, and you don’t have as many choices as you might have with
a different provider. However, if you’ve never
built a website before, by all means please go with Wix. It’s probably one of the
easiest things out there to do. And the other option I’m
gonna discuss momentarily, is really only for people who can already somewhat build a website. That other option is WordPress. It has a lot more flexibility, but there are a lot more decisions that go into the back end of
running a WordPress website. Now I should mention, I’m not
talking about I don’t believe that
they have a good product and I would never recommend them, because they’re basically
like Wix running WordPress. So you’re locked in, with
more difficult choices, at that rate you might
as well go with Wix. But, using a third party
host with, that’s something that I would consider, because you have total
control of your website. But, it means that you have to
find a solid third party host that meets your budget. Personally, I use a European hosting
company called Hostinger. Real quick future James jumping in here. I realized while I was editing this video that I forgot a third and
very important recommendation. If you don’t wanna go
with Wix or WordPress. There’s also a host made just
for bands called Bandzoogle. That’s B-A-N-D-Z-O-O-G-L-E.Com. And they are specifically tailored, to making websites for
bands and have some cool band features that other
hosts might not have because they’re not designed for bands. So, that’s the third option to check out, but now let’s get back to past James talking about the rest
of building a website. What about the content on your website? What should actually be on your website? Well the big thing would be your music. If you’re using WordPress,
I love the Cue Player. It’s a free WordPress plug in although there is a premium
version, you don’t need it. That’s what I use for my studio’s website. Of course you could also
use a Spotify playlist. That’s a great option but if you do that, make sure that you provide a
link where people can choose different streaming
providers to listen to. Go check out the video
I did a few weeks ago, on that very topic, and make sure that if you do use a Spotify player on your site, you have other ways for people
to listen to it as well. Another thing that you
should have on your website, is an email sign up. Email might seem old and out of date, but it’s still the most
effective way to reach people. Essentially it’s free once
you have people on your list. The minor cost of maintaining
a list, really isn’t much. Especially when you’re just starting out, sites like Mailerlite or Mailchimp will let you have a free email plan till you reach a certain
number of subscribers. One thing that you can do, to help get people onto your mailing list, is have what’s called a lead magnet. In the case of a band, somethings that would work really well for that include a percentage
discount on your merch store, or just a free song that’s
exclusive to the mailing list, such as a b-side. And say, “Hey we’ve never
given this song to anyone else, “but we’re gonna give it
to you just for signing up “for our mailing list.” There’s still a handful more
things for your website, one of them being a tour dates page. You should always have your tour dates up to date on your website. One really easy way to do this, is to use a third party
app like Bandsintown, that syncs your tour dates
to all of your sites. Whether it’s your website,
your Facebook, whatever. Next up is a way for
people to contact you. This could be a contact form on your site, or it could just be your email. Now if you do post your email, I recommend putting different
emails for different things. But of course only if you have different people handling those tasks. So for example if one of
the members of your band handles booking and somebody else handles general management or press. Have those split up, so people can contact
the right person directly rather that going through a gate keeper. That being said, honestly
it’s probably best to do a contact form because
then you can filter out spam requests and things like that. You should also have
an online merch store. You can either host it on your own site, using the store that Wix
sells to their users, or something like Shopify
or WooCommerce on WordPress. Or you could have a third party provider, who prints, ships, and
sells the items for you. It costs a little more to do that but it is low maintenance and once you have the designs uploaded, it’s pretty much good to go. The last item that you
should have on your website, from a design point of view, is a press page with a one sheet. Essentially this is information that anyone writing about
you or interviewing you would need to do a good job. So bio information, some press photos, and just general talking
points about the band and your upcoming releases or tours. A one sheet should be all
of this condensed down into one page of key elements. So things like, who you’ve toured with, who helped you make the album, when you’re gonna release the album, similar bands that if
people enjoy those bands they should check you out. Things like that. There’s just one more thing I
wanna touch on in this video. And that’s technology. There’re two very important tools that should be on any website you make. The first of which is a Facebook pixel. Essentially, a Facebook pixel allows you to show advertisements
on Facebook or Instagram to people who’ve already
interacted with you, or visited your website. This is one of the cheapest and most cost effective
methods of advertising online, and you definitely should not overlook it. And if you’re worried
about privacy concerns, there really aren’t any because you don’t get the data, for who visited your website. It’s very much a one way thing, you can show ads to those people, but that doesn’t mean that
you know who those people are. The second tool, that
you need on your website is very easy. It’s Google Analytics. That essentially just shows you what is going on on your website. Where are people visiting from? What time are they visiting? What pages do they go to? All kinds of details like that. And once again, you
wouldn’t get any information that you could actually
tie to a specific person. So there’s not a huge privacy concern. Google Analytics is by far a standard. And most of the websites
operating on the web today have it installed. And I really can’t say enough
how important it is for you to understand how
visitors use your website so you can improve your side. So technologically, Facebook pixel and Google Analytics are two things that are absolutely vital to your website. It’s so important to have a website as the central hub for your band online. Social media pages and Bandcamp are great, but they do not replace a website. I’m sure of all the people in your band, at least one of you, has built a website at some point. So figure out what you want, have that person help you make the site and just do it. No excuses. At the minimum, you should
have a music player, and some basic information. If that’s all you can do for now, just put up a little sign
that says, “Coming soon.” That’s better than not having anything. Plus if you already set up Google Analytics and your Facebook pixel, all those people visiting your site, once the site is done, you
can run a retargeting ad to have them checkout your site again. If you don’t have a website yet, you should really have one
by next week the latest. It’s not something that
takes a huge amount of time if you can spare an hour or two per week, you can set up your website in no time. And then after that once it’s running, it’s really easy to maintain. Or if you do have a website, but you think it needs some work, set aside some time on your
calender to make those updates, so you can have a fast, efficient, and appealing website to visit. Just because you made to
the end of this video, I have something for you. If you go to the website critique link down on the description below, I will checkout your website
and give you my honest opinion on what is great, what is good
and what could be improved. This will help you have a
better functioning website. It’s a really quick process. Once I have your website’s link, I’ll go through it and
record a video for you with my recommendations and feedback. So again, if you wanna get
a free website critique, go down to the description and click the link for
the free website critique. Thanks so much for watching everyone, I hope you all have an awesome week and as always I’ll see you next Sunday, keep rockin’.

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