6 Essentials for a functional website

Look! Beautiful, isn’t it?
Your website that reflects your personal brand as a musician and showcases your unique style is up for the world to see and use.
Or can they?
You know how to get around your website and you know how to find your website, but can anyone else?
Basically, is it a functional website?

For a website that works, encourages fan engagement, attracts opportunities, and meets any other purpose you had in mind there are seven questions you should keep in mind when analyzing your website.

1. What is the purpose?

As a musician, the purpose of your website can vary from wanting to showcase your music, promoting your album, getting hired to perform at an event, etc. Websites offer numerous uses and options to provide products, services, and information, to name only a few, online. Take a look at the Amazon.com website which has several uses, such as comparing products or reading reviews, but the sole purpose of the site is to sell products. All the different tools, features, and uses are intended to drive the visitor to buy more products.

2. Who will be using your website?

Who is your visitor? Would you have the same website design or even the same style of writing for an audience interested in Country as you would for an audience interested in Blues or Jazz? Consider age, gender, demographics, social class, and so on…

3. Consider what your visitor intends to do when they arrive.

Know your visitor type! You should have some sense of what their purpose for being on your site is and if it’s clear how to use it. Are they there to listen to samples of your music? Purchase your music? Get information on your live shows?

4. Is it clear how to use it?

A good website design will speak for itself. Your visitor should not have to guess or work at figuring out what your website is about, what kind of musician you are, how to listen to your music, or how to contact you for bookings. Essentially, what’s in it for the visitor?

A clever or too stylish website navigation system means visitors have no idea how to use it or where to go next. If it’s the least bit difficult to use and understand it won’t get used at all — meaning it won’t achieve its goal, and in turn means it doesn’t function.

5. Does it engage your visitor?

Good design draws you in through visual appeal and can be a combination of feel, ease of use, or absolute amazement. Keep in mind aesthetics are only part of what makes a website engaging. Leading them to the next step without hesitation or question of where to go next engages the visitor to explore further until they have taken the action you want them to.

6. Can your website be found?

When people use the internet to research or discover new music or talent, it is essential that your website is built for Google, Yahoo and Bing (the major search engines) to find and index your website. The biggest mistake is content and wording that is built into the website as a graphic. If you can’t highlight those keywords people use to search for you – the search engines can’t read them, which means they can’t find you. Seo alt tags  help, however content is king! Read – 5 Steps to improve your website SEO »

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