The Ultimate Guide to Your Band or Musician Website
You’ve got the best drummer possible, your bass player is top, and your vocalist is nothing short of genius. You very likely already have some presence on social media, but, as much as you have been trying, your audience has not been growing and people have not been showing up for your gigs. You probably need a website. In this article, we go through all the reasons why you should have a website and what should be on it. Plus a number of good and bad examples.
Why Does a Band Need a Website?
A band, especially newer ones, should have a website to make it easier for new listeners and fans to find them. Having a website gives you a place to share band updates and news, gigs, lyrics or merch if you already have some.
Your website is a unique place for your fans to come and learn more about you – and what’s most important, it gives you a lot more visibility than social media.
Furthermore, you’ve probably noticed that many social media companies have been suspending or deleting accounts which can – in a band’s case – lead to losing a way of keeping in touch with fans. When you have a website, though, you own it, and people can still find you.
There is a reason major bands and artists have their websites. In short, a band website is a must. A solo musician website is also a must. If you don’t have a website, you exist but not for the entire world.
Let’s dive into the reasons and how to make your site great.
What Should Be On a Band’s Website?
The simple answer is everything your fans want to know that applies to us, music journalists as well because we’re looking for that information as well.
Here’s the list, we cover each point below:
- Upcoming events and their calendar
- News and band updates
- New releases
- Band bio
- Where to find your music
- Contact details
Let’s go through them one by one.
The homepage is a website’s single most important page because it points users in the directions they want to go and the information they want to find about you. It should show your identity and personality, i.e., if you are a punk band, that homepage should SCREAM to punk fans). It should link to the information in the list below.
Upcoming Events and Their Calendar
Letting your fans know when and where you’re playing is absolutely crucial for your success. While listening to records is great, listening to live music is even better.
Make sure you provide these details for each gig:
- Venue (include a link to it)
This is absolutely basic information. If there’s the option, you should also tell your fans how they can get tickets or, ideally, link to the venue or site.
This will help your audience get their tickets easily and quickly without much searching. As a bonus, you’ll shorten the time they’ll have to change their mind.
Don’t forget to go back and add setlists to help your fans recollect their memories and share the love.
News and Band Updates
All fans crave information about their beloved band or artist so updating them with news is a good idea. Not only can you keep them more engaged, but you can also show off to potential gig organisers, venues, and journalists to get more publicity.
This section of your site can host various information whenever one of these happens:
- New tour or gig dates announced
- A good gig or band story
- New release coming
- Your song or EP was reviewed
- Changes in the band
- Got a new music video
- Signed with a label
The possibilities are unlimited and trust us, music journalists want to know all of that so we can better track how you’re doing.
This would be an ideal space to share everything that’s new, it could be the featured section of your site.
A new video? New song? New EP? Why not share your excitement about it? It’s also something you may consider adding to the site’s homepage.
This is another pretty much self-explanatory section. We live for music, you do too. List your music here, from singles to EPs, and don’t forget to link to the lyrics.
Has your music or gig been reviewed? Tell the world.
Taking pictures every time you play offers fans another way to connect – through re-living their experience or just checking how much fun your band had when you played last time.
We live in a digital world with social media and video services such as YouTube or Vimeo so the chances are you already have a few videos, be it from gigs or just practice sessions.
Having this category on your website can prove instrumental to showcasing your talent; uploading your videos to the streaming services helps your fans and can lead to you being discovered by people who are browsing the music categories on the platforms because their algorithms can show your work to many music fans.
An incredibly valuable section of your website hands down.
This is the right place to show your fans who you are both as a band and as individual band members. People don’t want to listen to good music, they want to know more about the people making it.
The information you provide here can be used by multiple entities, from journalists to promotors that are considering you.
Make sure you list:
- Your band bio can range from how you started, what music genre(s) you’re in, how you got together, what drives the band, etc.
- A good band photo. Simply because nothing else screams this is us than a good photo. Take multiples, and decide later. Definitely add some!
- Individual band member info. You don’t need to go into any detail, just the basics. A personal photo is a welcomed option but not necessary.
- Personal statements or quotes.
Where to Find Your Music
Not only video platforms are used every day by many, but so are various music streaming ones.
If you’re in a band, you’re big on music, yours and others, so the odds are you have a subscription to one of the services from Apple Music, Amazon Music, or Spotify. You may have even heard about platforms that pay better than the already mentioned ones, e.g., Deezer, Tidal, or Qobuz.
As this is potentially another very impactful must-have on your site, you should list where your fans can find your music.
BTW, these services are another place that can help you be discovered.
If you already have merch, make sure your fans know how to get it. It could be an online shop or at your gigs. They need to know where to buy what they want to support you.
If your band’s songs don’t have lyrics, you can skip this one. If they do, let me let you in a secret.
Whenever we’re out and overhear a song, we often don’t have the means to instantly search for it but we remember at least a line or two of the lyrics. And what do we do later? We go and google it.
That’s how people often discover new music so do them and yourself the favour and include lyrics of your website. Not only you’ll enable new audiences to discover you, but you’ll also make sure your lyrics sites won’t cannibalise you and if they do, they’ll also get your lyrics right the first time.
An obvious one. If you want to play more gigs, you need concert organisers and promotors to know how to contact you.
We recommend having clear contact details, especially your email address. In the beginning, it may be a personal one but you may want to change it later when you grow to avoid fans contacting you.
We’d recommend not sharing your phone number online if it’s not your agent’s. You want to avoid random people calling you at indecent hours.
We discuss newsletters later but this is the website section it should belong to as well.
Have Your Electronic Press Kit Ready
Electronic press kit, or EPK for short, can help music magazines such as us at Phonotonal, write about your band better because it allows us to understand and present your band in much closer detail.
In your EPK, you should include:
- A short bio about your band you’d love journalists to read and potential fans to know.
- A few high-quality photos of your band in various situations, from practising to relaxing. Up to you.
- A few quotes about the band, e.g., how you got together, why you’re doing music, where you get inspiration for your music or your musical influences.
- A video or two you’d prefer journalists to show their readers. This makes our lives easier and your chances of being presented as you’d like higher.
If you can think of anything else, add it!
You may want to include your EPK under the Band Bio section to have everything related to your PR in one place.
Newsletters Help Keep Fans Raving
If you really care about your fan base, sending out newsletters regularly may be the way to go because newsletters are one of the ways marketers use to promote brands and products.
It’s effective, shows care, and when really well executed, it may make the difference and allow you to share news, releases, or gigs easily.
You can add your newsletter sign-up either to your site’s homepage or as a submenu item under the contact main navigation menu. Ideally both!
We definitely recommend adding your newsletter sign-up to your homepage and under contact details. The more it’s visible, the better the chance of people signing up.
Good and Bad Examples of Band Websites
A Bad Band Website Example
Let’s start with a terrible example. The Manchester Orchestra’s website does not offer anything you’d expect – only tour dates, shop, social media, and the contact page.
Is that enough for a band that’s great, plays amazing gigs, but no one can really learn anything more about it from their own website? We believe that’s not a great way to do it.
A Good Band Website Example
On the other hand, Metallica’s website offers the ultimate fan experience you can ever expect. From music to merch, you can find absolutely everything on the site instantly and intuitively.
And this is Metallica, a band that’s got all the attention it can get.
There is great value in keeping fans updated and happy.
Phonotonal May Want to Review Your Music
Do you have a song or a few your fans are absolutely raving about? Get in touch, we’ll be happy to listen and, if we believe it’s that good, we may review it.
If you decide to send us your music, you can reach us at [email protected].
We love new music and new bands above all.
Written by Vinklarek on