It’s that time of the year again – time for spring cleaning. Here are five ways in which you can spruce up your website, all in the name of springtime.
1) Throw old news in the trash. You know what happens when you leave something in the fridge for too long? Well the same thing happens when you leave expired news on your website. So throw that old news in the trash and let people know what’s happening now. And if you’re thinking you don’t have anything newsworthy to report, remember that your news doesn’t have to be that you’ve just won a Grammy award or a MacArthur Fellowship. There’s always something happening – it’s all in how you frame it. For example, let people know what you’re working on, or what you’re excited about. If it’s meaningful for you, it could well be meaningful for your readers.
2) Replace your photos. Looking a little too young in your photos? Or have a haircut that makes you almost unrecognizable? It’s time for a photo update. I recommend getting new photos at least every five years to keep them looking current. If you live in the NYC area and are looking for photographer recommendations, feel free to contact me – I know some great ones. And if you’re strapped for cash, everyone has at least one friend who’s savvy with an iPhone camera these days. Figure out who yours is and take him or her out to lunch in exchange for a short shoot.
3) Give your color scheme a makeover. Been sporting that black and red design for years? Try something new and blue. Have a totally black and white theme? Add a splash of green. This one you may not be able to do by yourself, but generally speaking, changing elements like background and font colors is a quick and easy job for web designers so it shouldn’t cost you much. If you’re struggling with what colors might be right for you, take a look at this interesting blog post about the psychology of colors. It might help you make a decision.
4) Add highlights to your bio. This can be an easy one to forget about. It doesn’t take long – it’s just a mater of doing it. First, take a look at your bio and figure out when you wrote it. Then, look at your calendar and make a list of the notable things you’ve done since then. Now you have some new content to insert into your bio. And remember that bios don’t have to be (and actually shouldn’t be) chronological. Put your most exciting accomplishments at the beginning and go from there. For further inspiration, check out my previous blog post on crafting the perfect bio.
5) Consider ways to further engage your site visitors. If you have the resources and the inclination, below is a list of page topics that my clients have included on their websites. You certainly don’t need to have all of these – this is simply a list of ideas.
News – current is better
Bio – should feature your full bio and some photos
Projects – the groups you’re currently involved with
Gigs/Shows/Calendar – ideally it will automatically delete past dates
Gallery – can feature press photos, live photos, candid photos, or all of the above
Videos – embedded from Youtube/Vimeo
Store – to sell physical discs, digital music, PDF charts/arrangements, etc.
Lessons – do you teach? advertise it here
Blog – there’s an infinite amount of topics (check out my earlier blog post for ideas)
EPK/Press Kit – everything promoters might want to download i.e. photos, short/long bio, one-sheet, quotes, etc.
Press – features any articles or quotes that have been written about you
Links – websites of your comrades or brands that you use/endorse
Contact – might seem obvious, but I’ve seen many websites that are missing this important page
In conclusion, it’s a good idea to at least once a year simply take a good look at your website and consider what you can add or improve. Happy spring cleaning!