The Guide To Making A Website For Your Band

One of the best ways to promote your band is to create a page on the net for your band. Here is how you can do it.

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Well, I have been making lots of websites and I figure I might as well make an article to help others that are new to it. Most good band websites need/have the following:
  • A bio of your band and each band member.
  • Pictures of your band (try to get them while you are playing).
  • Media. Try to pick the best 3-5 songs that you have for this.
  • A Guestbook. Some people choose a message boards, but usualy a guestbook is your best book. They are free and gets the job done in much less space then a message board will.
  • Catchy but short domain. Try to have it as your bands name. I still use www.dot.tk for my domains on most sites. It is much easier to type www._____.tk then www.____.tripod.com or www.___.geocities.com/.
  • An extras section. Here you can try to sell some merchandise, show off your newest lyrics, or anything else of the sort. First off you need to find a nice webserver that will host for free. You might as well use a free one to start off because it usualy takes time for your website to grow and actualy need more space. I use www.geocities.com for all of my websites. It is realy easy to use and has a tutorial for novice users to learn the basics. Try using www.dot.tk for your domain to skip the task of typing in the long URL of all free servers. Having a shorter domain will actualy keep the people going back and visiting your site more then you could imagine. To begin your very own website you will want to plan out what it will look like. Having photoshop skills will realy help with this. You will need some graphics for your site so that it attracts others and keeps them comming back. A lot of people here in the forums can help you with this if you need it. More advanced users can use Flash instead of using still images. Having a creative look and a nice looking website is the most important part of the website besides the media.... Media is easily the most important part of ANY website. The most commonly used for this is Pure Volume. Try using it and linking it to your site. Linking Pure Volume to your site saves your site tons of space which could be used for many other things. Having a few of your best songs up, but changing every so often) is the key to keeping others comming back to your website. Check out one of the recording articles for great recording suggestions. Pictures are just on the website for a show. It keeps them entertained. If your website is only text they will be bored and leave quickly. So take some time to get some pictures of your band just hanging around and some of you while you are in a gig to put on the website. A bio isn't neccasary for all band websites, but a lot of people like to know about you. I have been asked COUNTLESS times all types of questions while I am giving out my bands URL, and instead of spending 5 minutes on each person, I just tell them to check out our Bio secion. Put your favorite bands, favorite CD, things you do besides the band...even if you were in a fatal accident. Intresting bios are always good to have on ANY website. Now on to the Extras. Having a section where you sell your products are always good. Having shirts, hats, stickers, buttons...ANYTHING for sell on your website will help you a lot. Having someone buy something that lives on the other side of the country is a key to promotion if you are wanting to hit it big and stop being a "local band". Also try putting AIM/AOL icons for people to use in it or trade links to other sites to help out. Also consider having the latest news as well. Have you finished a new demo? Have you bought a new guitar or bass? Put all the important news on your website as well. An extras section is also great for showing off your upcomming shows and directions to the location.

    HTML And Javascript

    Having a basic knowledge of this will help out ANY website. Having a pulldown menu looks much better then the typcial regular text lined up to navigate the site. With javascript you can also have tons of nice features and affects to make your website much more attractive. Look around on the web to learn how to use it. It alone will make your website more desirable then you would ever expect. Here is an intro to Javascript: <html> <body> <script> </script> </body> </html> Use that in notepad or Microsoft word. Searching the web for free javascripts, enter what it asks into the proper location. Save it all as "____.html". Then open up windows and use File, Open and click browse. Browse threw and find what you just saved and open it. There you can test and see if it worked. It may have all types of text around it, but that is common. It doesn't mean that it isn't working. So if you see that it even worked AT ALL, put it on your website on a testing page(I have a page on my website titled Javatest, its not part of the website that people view) and view to make sure it works. To use it on Geocities, you enter it as an HTML code. You can make the codes on the page ANY size, so if you have limited space you can make it as small as possible and it will not affect how it actualy shows on the webpage. I may write a more detailed article on Javascript soon.
  • 61 comments sorted by best / new / date

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      scumfuc_69
      this article came just in time. I was just trying to post MP3s on my site. I'll try some of these suggestions
      ebashnitzil
      YOU SHOULD ALSO LIST EQUIPMENT, DISCOGRAPHY, AND A GOOD ABOUT SECTION AND MAKE SURE THEY HAVE EASY ACCESS TO A BAND EMAIL FOR Q&A, AND SHOW LIST
      orcutt989
      I make websites for bands for a living. If anybody wants information, or examples PM me.
      Danny7
      I'd put equiptment on my site but: Squier Strat. Fender Frontman 15G Amp. Sharfkin picks. Venom Leads. Korg tuner. Isn't an exciting list. Maybe in 2/3 years when I get the set up I want, but until then.. no way.
      Indierocker1313
      yeah i hope so. that sh*t is complicating. only a real nerd would know what you're talking about, and they already know how to make web pages. It's a little bit more complicated than... I've been in HTML class for 9 weeks now, and any web page i made would look like crap! you'd have to know how to use tables or frames if you want it to look half-way decent. I'd say if you're really serious about your band, you should get an editor to do the code for you, or else hire the local nerd to make you one.
      Dude, I taught my self HTML, and Java... there not that hard to learn. And I'm not a nerd.
      MetallicFallout
      Great article. You covered pretty much everything that I would have covered if I made this article. However, I have had some problems with geocities lately, where pages will be down for like days. So I get the HTML for the page and paste it over to another server (I just use geocities for the creation of pages). To answer your question, yeah; its a major pain.
      Shortys99887
      Great article It's like exactly everything I did for our band site check out www.mindwar.tk
      Laser
      Or if you're lazy you cna pay someone to do it like me, who knows html, php, and all those other goodies. ("Stripe of Black" on aim. )
      slowry05
      Instead of using JavaScripts, use Cascading Style Sheets. They're easier to use, look better, and are more browser friendly.
      five_stars_rock
      Oh, and if you guys still can't do it, then IM "iawayfromyoui" on AIM, hes my friend and hes realy good at it. He does websites for $25.
      stiff-upper-lip
      nice article, am doin a website for my band, tis hard tryin to tink of ideas for webpages!!! without statin the obvious!!!
      Bother
      I'm sorry but alot of the points in this article are misleading and just plain wrong: First off, Geocities is a very poor host. If you're expecting any kind of attention you will need alot more bandwidth than what they offer. If you want to suggest a good host, DO YOUR RESEARCH! I've found many good host, some have gone down because they give away alot for free. Anyways here's a list of sites that offer good free hosting: -www.100webspace.com - amazing host, they offer MySQL, PHP,1 gig bandwidth and 100 megs of space to start. This is amazing for a free host. Also for little more you can upgrade to alot more space. The only thing that may be a set back is that you have to use an FTP program (such as CuteFTP or CoreFTP Lite). Big bonus: No ads, absolutely free unless you want an upgrade. They're just great. Continued next comment.....
      LazyGuitar
      I'm in agreement with Bother ... this isn't a good guide. Geocities? Absolutely horrible host. Plus the "HTML and JavaScript" bit was so patchy, it wasn't worth adding. I dunno what you mean about a 'pull down menu' but if you mean a combo box, that's a terrible idea instead of linear navigation.
      RottenTurtle
      kurdtkobaign wrote: freewebs SUCKS...tripod is alright. CGI2U is good for message boards and stuff
      blacklabe l7 wrote: invision-hostin g.com is 8.50 to buy the domain, and 2.50 a month.. very nice hosting website.
      blacklabel7
      invision-hosting.com is 8.50 to buy the domain, and 2.50 a month.. very nice hosting website.
      Keif
      You guys should try Bandzoogle.com (www.bandzoogle.com). It blows Geocities out of the sky. You have to try it to believe it. There's a free trial. Cheers
      Bother
      Clearing up a few terms used above: -MySQL - is a database that is used for PHP cache's and the like. If you want a forum that is run by YOU on YOUR website using something like phpBB or Invision (Ultimate-Guitar used vBulletin and it costs $100 to buy a registry to use the boards) on your site. -PHP - a very useful internet language. Much better than Javascript or even CSS. For redirection I do agree with your choice. Dot.TK is very useful and unless you want to pay for the domain (which I would suggest) then use dot.tk. Another however is www.cjb.net which is also not bad. For purchasing a domain use something like: www.GoDaddy.com Now on to the sections: Continued next comment
      Bother
      -www.hostultra.com - not near as good, they offer alot of various bonuses like unlimited bandwidth and unlimited space but they do not offer MySQL and you also must use and FTP Program. The big problem is that the ads it had are very annoying. -www.freewebs.com - This is a good free host for the starter if you just want to preview it for you and your band in the browser online. It offers little space and does not allow FTP, PHP or anything like that. No ads however which kicks the crap out of geocities anyday. Continues next comment.....
      Bother
      Now on to the sections: The sections needed are: -News or a Journal or both, something to keep people informed, a journal can be like a blog if you'd like to express alot of your thoughts. -Biography - About the band and members. Don't forget why you started it. -Photos, not always necessary -Someone suggested Equipment, not necessary put it in the bio/about section -Songs - Not just media, name this something like music because people can then view tabs, lyrics, hear streaming music or the like all on one page no need for a whole bunch. This can also contain your discography if you've made some CD's That can almost sum up the pages other than perhaps links and a contact page. Also Message Boards are more essential than guestbooks if you make it alright for guests to post. Then you could have people also join to chat with you if they'd like. The scripts: -Javascript is a sloppy and annoying language to use, it is very poor. The best types are: -PHP, HTML and CSS. Most others are either too complicated or they are just moronic, pointless, etc. For information on the languages visit: www.htmlgoodies.com it covers almost every topic imaginable and if you take some time to read them then you'll know some stuff about what you're putting on your site and if it's useful or not. Hope this helped. To the write of the article, do some research this article was very poor.
      clwy87
      check out my band's website at www.vintageofficial.my100megs.com it's not totally complete though tell me what you think.
      Klown
      there are alot better guids all over the internet. sorry to say it, but this guide wont help many to do a web page. Going directly into what adress you should have? I've been doing webbsites for some time, and I suggest you find a nice "begginers HTML" guide somewhere else, then try to do some stuff, if you're intrested try PHP or JavaScript, with that you ca do alot, a band page should be no problem with only HTML skills.
      Bilzzard_of_Ozz
      but if you were in a fatal accident, how would you be able to put that on your bio condidering you'd be dead?
      Ha-ha and I won't dignify it with a last "ha". That was totally useless, considering that you won't be playing in a band if you're dead... douchbag...
      Bob_The_Moose
      I've been in HTML class for 9 weeks now, and any web page i made would look like crap! you'd have to know how to use tables or frames if you want it to look half-way decent. I'd say if you're really serious about your band, you should get an editor to do the code for you, or else hire the local nerd to make you one.
      Stay away from frames; unless you really know what you're doing it'll look terrible and ameteurish. And to be honest, you're best using div boxes and CSS over tables but tables are OK for layout.
      Sparkky
      Personally Id reccomend you go find a geek to do it for you. I personally make sites for friends like this. A pay domain costs about 50 ish dollars setup, and usually 5 bucks an month, nothing big and you can do ALOT more, and its much more professional. Again I reccomend getting sombody who knows what they are doing. As they can probably make a better site in 2 hours (I kid you not) than you could make in many weeks time. and dont talk to those fake idiots, talk to real geeks.. you know, the ones who actually know what their tlaking about.
      five_stars_rock
      Oh, and for the guy that asked about "how much would it cost to use a free domain?"...um...free :d duh. Unless you ment using a host just for space, which I wouldn't do unless you had a seriously LARGE website with TONS of pictures/videos.
      R00k13
      good article..but isnt that why guys like you are there..to help bands create a website...heh .well If i want to go far with a band..instead of putting time into a website..ill make up some ideas for new songs instead..but still really helpfull article
      five_stars_rock
      About the comment about the "fatal accident"...it was sarcasm. I just wanted to make sure that you got my point to put ANY type of information up that would be entertaining. Also, you could get a geek to do it. But the point of this is to make your own for the noobs that doesn't know how and can't find someone to do it for them. I'm sure there are lots of people out there that can't find someone to do it for free.
      pop princess
      you told me you had an article and I;m impressed, in the process of making a band for my website, thanks!
      R00k13
      true i agree, but still...if your band is worth putting online..someone will definitly do it without hesitating..The rythm guitarist of our band would be doing a website but wasnt practicing..so what good is it when we got together for a practice session and he wouldnt know the riff..and to let you know..hes a great guitarist too..dont mix two job together..but for those who want to do it...I have nothing against it..but yes..starters need to know all that..its all good..its still a good article heh
      five_stars_rock
      Thanks for the comments, seems like it would have a better rating then a 3 so far . Anyways, I use geocities as well. I have found a server that I plan on using here in a few weeks, it is like $25 to start, and only $4-5 a month after that. A free guestbook? If you are using geocities they give a free one, but check google. There are TONS of free guestbooks. In fact, I don't think I've seen one that you had to actualy pay for.
      Danny7
      Funily enough, I finished my bands website about a week ago; if anyone wants to check it out: www.otmtheband.tk Whats a bastard though, is that its not compatible in anything bar from Internet Explorer (and I'm a Mozilla user, so it sucks even more), because of some of the hotspot linking and dual tags. Oh well. We're gonna get some pictures from practice tomorrow, and possibly record some stuff if we can be bothered to lug my drummers kit up to his computer room. Does anyone know a place where I could get a guestbook? It doesn't even have to be so I can add it to my site, just link to it. As long as its free of course...
      UtBDan
      ^ depends on where you buy it from. Usually costs about 100 bucks to start up, and then some very cheap price like 5 bucks a month to keep doing it for unlimited uploads. You can get better deals than that. Try geocities.com and looking at their advanced packages.
      Pumpkins4Life
      how do you make a regular "yourband".com website, how much does it cost if you dont use a free domain?
      JLJohnson_21
      I may write a more detailed article on java script soon.
      yeah i hope so. that sh*t is complicating. only a real nerd would know what you're talking about, and they already know how to make web pages. It's a little bit more complicated than...
      I've been in HTML class for 9 weeks now, and any web page i made would look like crap! you'd have to know how to use tables or frames if you want it to look half-way decent. I'd say if you're really serious about your band, you should get an editor to do the code for you, or else hire the local nerd to make you one.
      d_music_man
      ^yeah java can be comfuseing as hell, a article would be good. Pretty good article though
      Hpda5121
      check out http://www.tvtnet.com/site/ he made a site for me and it was really nice, took some time however. His email is tvtextreme4@hotmail.com, tell him a cripple sent him, he'll know who i am, cant promise you any deals though
      Resiliance
      Well, if a band is serious.. They should buy some webspace and a .com domain.
      five_stars_rock
      Why? When they first start off they won't be using the space you would need on a free server unless you have tons of videos/pictures for the band. I do agree however that when you get known realy well, that you SHOULD get a .com or .net domain. Also, it doesn't take much time to learn how to make a website and to make it. I would usualy spend about an hour messing around with them and can do it in no time now after a few weeks with ease. It has NEVER affected my practice time for the band.
      slash_620
      realy good article but i think you could include some bands website's especialy your own. www.whitevoodoomusic.com is the only unsigned band website i know of and its a perfect example of a good website