Musician Sites

ARTICLES: How to make your band website work for you – Part 1: First Impressions

First Impressions

A visitor’s first impression will be created the instant they first set eyes on your website. He/she will form an opinion about you from the overall look of the site – does it look nice, professional?, does the image fit the band or a potential fan’s tastes?, is it obvious to the visitor how to find what he/she is looking for? Make sure the site is reasonably fast loading or you may loose some visitors before they even get a good glimpse of your site. Flash based websites can often be slow to load and a percentage of visitors will give up and surf to a different website once they have looked at a ‘Loading, please wait…’ message for a few seconds, so in general it is better to stick with a standard HTML based website.

Once new visitors have landed on your site and their initial impression did not cause them to abort their mission of checking you out, they will continue shaping their initial impression of you from the information presented on the web pages – the static content, the information that is more or less permanent (at least until the next website update). This is you communicating to the world about who you are, what you do and why people should like you. Web surfers have notoriously short attention spans, so make this content easy and enjoyable to read. Use photos and images to keep it visually stimulating. Present it in a concise format suitable for skimming – use high impact headings and keep text blocks short. If you have a lot of textual information that you really want to put on the site, break it up into sub pages suitable for the visitor that is in no hurry and wants to delve deeper but get your point across concisely on the top level pages. When you are creating the content for these pages, keep in mind your primary audience – your fans and potential fans. Music industry professionals may be among the audience too but consider them secondary. They will be the primary audience when you create your press kit or electronic press kit.

Continue to Part 2: Turn your band website into your online communication center

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