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What band website builders do you guys use?

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What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Guest » Tue Mar 29, 2016 6:31 pm

I've seen a few out there like Bandzoogle and Hostbaby, but was wondering what you guys use!

Cheers in advance
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby johnny h » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:48 am

You don't need a website. Websites were cool in the 90s, for a brief period. Just get your social media thing going. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Soundcloud, Snapchat.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Guest » Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:34 pm

Cheers dude!
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby CS70 » Wed Mar 30, 2016 2:18 pm

Imran500 wrote:I've seen a few out there like Bandzoogle and Hostbaby, but was wondering what you guys use!

Cheers in advance

Hostbaby at the moment ,but thinking about a revamp.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby sixtysixmix » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:09 pm

I have done my own in the past but that was before the likes of Soundcloud.

I am a Developer and I can easily create a website ... but to be honest the 100+ hours (or maybe 500 if you want it to look any good) would be better spent composing and recording.

Social media is the way to get a presence now. Make sure you have consistent naming and branding across all social media you decide to use. There are plenty of guides online about how to use each one effectively. One thing they all say is post often and give/share. So plan to spend 30 minutes or so per day engaging on your social profiles. Also maybe once every week/2 weeks spend a bit more time creating video/photo content about what you are up to.

Hope that helps
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby desmond » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:35 pm

Social media (and "working it" effectively and consistently) is probably the most important, and the most beneficial in promotional and connection terms.

The bigger problem is that you don't own any of the content, or services, and it's at the whim of other people. It's non-permanent, and transitory. ("Hey! Check out my Myspace!")

If you're serious about a brand identity, and want something to last longer term, then a domain and website is something that's pretty permanent and belongs to you, no matter what happens in the ever changing social space.

So - the ideal method is to utilise all the various social avenues to cast a wide net to bring people in, connect and communicate, and funnel them to your website (and have useful, unique content when they get there and to keep them coming back).

But only bother if you're serious about investing into this, because for casual things, probably the effort to design, build and maintain a website and have it be something more than just a manifesto, pointless few pics, soundclips and gig dates is not worth it and it's not going to do much for you.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby johnny h » Wed Mar 30, 2016 3:48 pm

desmond wrote:
The bigger problem is that you don't own any of the content, or services, and it's at the whim of other people. It's non-permanent, and transitory. ("Hey! Check out my Myspace!")

If you're serious about a brand identity, and want something to last longer term, then a domain and website is something that's pretty permanent and belongs to you, no matter what happens in the ever changing social space.
That was important when people actually used to type in full URLs in. With the integrated search / address bar, people don't anymore. You just type the name. If one of your social sites dies or fades away, it will also fade away in your google results.

Keeping up a specialised website takes time and money and adds very little to your visibility online in 2016. It is more important to build up a good following on your social media and get as much engagement as possible.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby desmond » Wed Mar 30, 2016 4:08 pm

johnny h wrote:If one of your social sites dies or fades away, it will also fade away in your google results.


That's exactly what I mean. You may not want to be a position where all your content and engagement is on something that "dies or fades away". As always, "it depends" on your content and your aims.

johnny h wrote:Keeping up a specialised website takes time and money and adds very little to your visibility online in 2016. It is more important to build up a good following on your social media and get as much engagement as possible.


Which is exactly what I said above. I didn't say that having your own website increases visibility - it doesn't, use social media for that. Use your website if you want to build something permanent and not risk having things fade away - but *only* if you can dedicate the effort into doing it well, and funnel social media engagement to you in a useful (to both you, and your fans) way - which isn't trivial, really.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Emmet » Wed Mar 30, 2016 5:07 pm

To continue the social media / website discussion your website should be the most important part of your marketing. Use your social channels to generate awareness, engage an audience etc but the end game is ALWAYS to funnel them to your website to get them to sign up to your mailing list which is fan/customer data that YOU own.

In some respects you have to treat social media as a pay to play environment, in order to reach your fans you have to pay and whoever runs the platform can (and will) change the rules to suit them rather than you, see the current timeline change of Instagram as a current reminder of that. Oh and Google + going arse up quite recently, there's another.

To get back on the original topic, Bandzoogle looks quite good doesn't it.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby AndyClarke » Thu Mar 31, 2016 8:54 am

Although I agree with a lot which has been said, social media is the more important thing these days, I still feel it's important to have your own domain name and website if only for the sake of appearance. I've always said the best way to appear professional is act professional, which is why I still keep our website going but keep it simple. It consists of two pages "news" and "gigs", the news page pulls all it's info from a tumblr account so is easy to update and both pages have links to all our social media. I honestly don't think it has to be difficult to maintain a website, just keep it to what you actually need instead of over dressing it.

I do believe website are important otherwise your favourite bands wouldn't bother with them.

You can check out our site here www.the-gifted.co.uk
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Temp » Thu Mar 31, 2016 9:10 am

You don't need a website. Websites were cool in the 90s, for a brief period. Just get your social media thing going. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Soundcloud, Snapchat.

Websites are as cool as the visitor perceives them to be, decent ones move with the times and I think it's safe to say they're here for the foreseeable future. For less than £70 a year, why wouldn't you take the opportunity to create and furnish your own headquarters on the internet?

Just be wary of Wix - I've had a couple of muso clients who've immediately regretted signing up for their paid package - it's essentially bloatware. I've got one client on Bandzoogle - it seems okay but he still comes to me on a regular basis for copy, content and imagery.

Use your social channels to generate awareness, engage an audience etc but the end game is ALWAYS to funnel them to your website to get them to sign up to your mailing list which is fan/customer data that YOU own.

Yep. I've been a developer for 15 years now and using 'funnel' tactics has always been the preferred approach. Social media is just that - it's not a professional, targeted podium for your material, more of a free-for-all scrum. Ideally you'd set up your social media identities in tandem with a website, but as others have rightly said, social media is transient by nature and its visibility and impact is largely out of your control.

Another popular option is using Wordpress as the back-end - there's a wealth of media plugins and other goodies to enhance your site, most of them free.

Whether it applies to you or not, many artists (esp. composers) need the ability to showcase their works catalogue, scores, performances and schedules without the clutter and noise associated with Facebook etc.

A website should be your home on the internet. The horse's mouth.

Cheers.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Forum Admin » Tue May 10, 2016 12:31 pm

Temp wrote:Websites are as cool as the visitor perceives them to be, decent ones move with the times and I think it's safe to say they're here for the foreseeable future. For less than £70 a year, why wouldn't you take the opportunity to create and furnish your own headquarters on the internet?

Just be wary of Wix - I've had a couple of muso clients who've immediately regretted signing up for their paid package...


I haven't looked at Wix.com since it launched and I helped supervise while my daughter built her own site.

But they seem to be offering free (?) site building templates focussed on various sectors; one being the Music Industry:
www.wix.com/music/website - I didn't go so far as to click on the Get Started button, but functionally it seems to imply it links with 120 music stores/streaming services (including iTunes), offers commission-free merchandising store, fan base management tools, etc.

I'm not endorsing it, simply bringing it to people's attention who might not have visited there for a while.

I agree with Desmond et al, that a website is still a good thing and it serves a different function to social media. You need both types.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Crunkfingaz » Tue May 10, 2016 3:10 pm

My band uses Squarespace. It's really easy to use and for the cost of hosting, it's more than worth it. We used to do it through iWeb and GoDaddy, but these were useless and in no way user friendly. Squarespace is a web application, so I can update it wherever I am.

We keep a website going for appearances and for our listings, and the social media sites are for interacting with fans and other pages/events/bands.

www.threekingshigh.com
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby desmond » Tue May 10, 2016 3:17 pm

Squarespace is really awesome, as are some other template/hosted solutions, particularly for getting off the ground quickly and not requiring development expertise.

But one thing to note - the single big problem with these, which has always prevented me from using them (even when I wanted to), is that you don't own your website. You are locked in to the third-party platform, and can not move away from them. You site depends on their technology - you stop paying, or they hike the price beyond which is reasonable, or whatever eventuality occurs that would make you want to move, and you cannot take your site elsewhere. All you can do is shut it down, and then basically start from scratch elsewhere - and now you have to rebuild on a different platform.

At least with fairly generic hosting, you can always take your site files and data, and move hosts. You own your own site, and can deploy it as you wish.

Worth bearing in mind.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Crunkfingaz » Tue May 10, 2016 3:27 pm

That's very true, you do have to use their templates, and there's only so much customising you can do.
We had the original site designed by a graphic designer, with everything customised and hosted via FTP, but the hassle of having to go back to the same computer to update the site got tiring quickly!
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Exalted Wombat » Tue May 10, 2016 5:33 pm

Get the pro to design your site using one of the content management systems like Joomla, Drupal or WordPress. Any of these are free options when you buy webspace from a reputable provider, and you can update content from any computer, anywhere.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby desmond » Tue May 10, 2016 5:44 pm

Exalted Wombat wrote:Get the pro to design your site using one of the content management systems like Joomla, Drupal or WordPress. Any of these are free options when you buy webspace from a reputable provider, and you can update content from any computer, anywhere.


Indeed, it really depends on the website. Most people benefit from having some kind of CMS. I really hate to use big, complicated ones for simple needs, so in those cases I roll my own.

A "client" shouldn't really have to be editing and uploading HTML these days, if a "web designer" has chosen to implement things that way, then either they are not very good, or the website was *very* (very) cheap... :headbang:
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Rubber5oul » Tue May 10, 2016 10:40 pm

http://redeyeband.weebly.com/

I've used weebly with reasonable success. That is the site of my old band RedEye. My new band Plague Doctors site is a work in progress that will be using the same service. It's free and easy to use.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Gone To Lunch » Tue May 10, 2016 11:07 pm

See below.

Our site is hosted by GoDaddy and was made by us from their templates.

The music plays back from our Soundcloud page, embedded in the GoDaddy page.

I chose GoDaddy because I wanted a big established company, the price was competitive and the templates usable, and they have good telephone support.

It is important to us to maintain our own presence regardless of shifting trends. We do now have a facebook page that links to it.
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Re: What band website builders do you guys use?

Postby Exalted Wombat » Wed May 11, 2016 11:12 am

Online information - whether social media or web pages - is often seen as a marketing tool. In reality, it's a resource. There's very little outreach element, people find your pages by searching for something THEY want to know about.
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