Currently, there are over 2 billion websites on the internet. This is a drastic jump from around 206 million websites in 2010. One would naturally wonder why the sharp spike.
Websites provide an interactive interface through which you can communicate with your fans. Some musicians are more internet savvy than others, making such things as websites a necessity for their career.
Many artists tend to just have social media accounts however it’s highly recommend to have your own space on the internet that you own.
As a musician, there are several reasons why you’d need a website. In this article, we’re going to look broadly into the seven reasons why a website is important to you. Read on to find out.
Reasons why you should have a website
Websites are quite easy to create, register, and host. Before the outburst of the worldwide web (www), an online presence was reserved for institutions and public figures, who had the resources to maintain a website.
Due to the popularity of websites (even college students have very active websites), it is pretty much of an expectation that any musician or band has a website. A music website is not the equivalent of a blog. It requires time, effort, and technical skills to make.
A musician’s website would typically contain professional photographs, music, bio, and some blogs. The website should also be both web and mobile-friendly. Coming up with all this promotes a sense of seriousness in you as a musician, and that’s how the public, and especially the online community will regard you- serious.
You own the address
The most common websites are commercial (.com) sites. These are also the most suitable for an artist. Once you register your .COM domain name, it becomes yours so long as you keep on renewing for hosting. Talking of hosting, there are more hosting companies than you can count. If you wish to change the host, you will still be able to move along with your domain name. This ensures you do not lose touch with your fans, unlike if you had just a profile on a social media platform.
Social media platforms allow millions of users to create profiles with them. If, for some reason, a certain social media platform goes down or loses popularity, the profiles go down along. Myspace left behind some lessons we surely wouldn’t want to forget.
You govern the experience
With your own website, you also get to control all that goes on in it. For example, your fans can only see what you want them to see from the website. When it comes to messaging, it is you (or someone handling it on your behalf) who decides what messages are to be sent from the website. This level of control allows you to manipulate how and when your fans engage with your content.
Pop-up ads are among the most disturbing things on public and social media websites. With a website of your own, your fans do not have to get distracted by these ads. You can also tailor your own ads to be less prominent in your site.
You also get to customize your website as much as you like. A popular feature with websites for musicians is the hi-res press kit, which allows their fans to download music straight from the website. Some artists have even gone to the extent of adding blogs and fan pages on their websites. This is just an illustration of how flexible you can be as a musician if you have your own website.
Your own website can also be leveraged to bring out your brand’s personality. Visual content goes a long way in creating an initial image. You could publish a certain album art alongside a certain track on the website, which could make the lyrics more meaningful or communicate more than just the lyrics.
Direct sales to fans
Musicians do not just make music- it is their career and livelihood. Among how they earn is the sale of the music and merchandise, organized live performance concerts, advertising, among others. The primary incomes come from sales, which can be best managed and promoted via a website.
As mentioned above, with your own website, there are no design limitations. As such, musicians often have online stores in their sites, from where the fans buy merchandise and music. You can streamline the shopping experience from these sites by following the fans’ reviews and suggestions. A fan who notices that their suggestion was considered and implemented is very likely to be a lifelong fan.
When the fans create accounts to make purchases from your online store, they leave their email addresses, which are precious marketing data. You can reach out to these fans later to let them know of upcoming events, new music releases, or any other information you’d like to pass to them.
All these are bound to rake in more dollars for you.
You control and retain the data
Technically, all the data on your website belongs to you. We all know of the numerous privacy issues regarding public sites. With your website, you can also get more data than you would from a social media platform. For example, on popular music publishing websites, you get to know just a few things regarding your fans and profile visitors. On a personal website, you get much more valuable data including;
· The number of visitors who previewed your track
· Which fans downloaded your music
· What site they were redirected from
· The geographical location of the website visitors
· How the fans interacted with your music (did they skip some tracks?)
This information can be leveraged to optimize sales to, say a certain geographical location or to make more music relevant to a certain topic or demographic group. You could also segment by the city so that whenever you have an upcoming event or tour to a certain city, you can easily announce it to your fans in that city beforehand.
Furthermore, with your website, the fan list is just yours. Did you think you could migrate your social media followers? Certainly not. The mailing list is your most valued data. You’ll reach the fans whenever you want, regardless of which social media platform they’re in.
Making a website might be easier than your thought
Long gone are the days when creating and hosting a website used to cost an arm and a leg. For beginners, there are even free hosting service providers like WordPress.com. You can use such free hosting services to design your site before proceeding to a paid hosting service. And did I mention- you can do all this from the comfort of your mobile device? Yes!
There are also tons of tutorials on YouTube.com and blog posts on how to create a website. All of this information is free and accessible at any time.
Professional web builders are also very eager to sell their services to you, and at a price, you wouldn’t have imagined before the millennium, all thanks to increasing demand and supply.
Basically, you’re just one step away from owning one, in case you do not have a personal website.
It is superior for organic search and SEO ranking
Digital marketing has evolved faster than it could have been anticipated. Big companies and brands are spending millions of dollars annually for paid advertisements. Those that do not want to pay for ads, have to concentrate on SEO (search engine optimization to rank higher in SERP (Search Engine Results Page).
As a musician, you do not want your fans to search for you on the internet but instead get irrelevant results. A personal website allows you to be more conspicuous in a few ways;
In your own website, mentioning your stage name and the title of your latest track helps you rank higher on Google searches. You can also add any new peculiar thing about you as a musician since people will mostly search what’s trending.
You can also choose your artist or band name as your domain name (you could also use a variant of your artist name such as your alias, in case your artist name is already registered as a domain by another person.
As a result of these two, Google will rank you higher as the keywords matching with a domain are prioritized over those that appear in social media platforms. As a musician, you will have cut down on advertising costs.
Wrapping it up
Having a personalized online presence is of more importance today than 10 years ago. As a musician, you stand to gain more than what I have just shared with you if you embrace the trend and make it your own. If you’re an aspiring musician, starting with a website of your own teaches you more about online marketing, which will later be a key factor in your career, should you follow it to the end.
Hopefully after reading this article you should start your journey to owning your own website.