Make your website social-media friendly

Social Media IconsWeb optimization 101: socialize your website today

We’re now a decade into the age of social media. Social media is how people use the Internet. If your website isn’t social, you could be losing out on loads of traffic. The bare minimum you should have on your website are “follow” buttons so that people can find you on social networks like Facebook and Twitter, and “share” buttons so people can share your content on their favorite social networks.

Adding Follow buttons

Whether you use HTML to add your buttons or use a free service like www.niftybuttons.com, social media icons are a great way to get your website visitors to engage with you on social media. But remember: people have become accustomed to seeing those generic Facebook and Twitter icons. Make sure to choose icons that stand out and include a call to action. Continue Reading . . .

Four easy ways to keep your web content fresh

How to update your blog on a regular scheduleHow to post new content regularly on your website or blog

Nothing says, “I don’t care and neither should you” like a prehistoric event calendar and a blog post endorsing Ross Perot’s presidential candidacy. Even die-hard fans will give up after a few visits to a stagnant website. If you want your audience to keep coming back you have to give them something to come back for.

Luckily, it doesn’t take a lot of time to keep your website fresh. Upload a few photos, post a funny video, add a link to an interesting article, give a brief update on your current project or update your calendar with upcoming events.

If you can, try to update your website once a week. Your fans will appreciate it.

Here’s some quick tips: Continue Reading . . .

Make sure your website is mobile and tablet friendly

Mobile and tablet-friendly websites: responsive designIn order to create the best possible experience for visitors, you need to make sure your website looks great and works well on mobile and tablet platforms.

At least 20% of your traffic probably comes from mobile and tablet devices. If your website doesn’t work well on mobile, you’re neglecting two out of every ten visitors to your website.

While dedicated mobile websites were popular in the past, the best solution for creating a website that works great on mobile devices is to make sure your website uses responsive design. Responsive design is Google’s recommended format for handling websites on mobile devices. It’s no joke. A responsive site will automatically resize to fit any screen size—so you don’t have to pinch-and-zoom just to read text.

3 Quick Tips

Continue Reading . . .

Optimize your website’s images for search

Optimizing web imagesWhile many website owners worry about how discoverable they are in traditional search engine results, there are many additional ways to be discovered online. Google Image Search (and other image-based search engines) can be a valuable source of traffic. Best of all, Image search is not as competitive as traditional search results so you have a better chance of ranking well.

Optimizing your images for search is easy to do

There are three ways to describe your image for Google:

1. File Name

2. Title Tag

3. Alt. Tag Continue Reading . . .

3 simple ways to improve your website design

3 simple web design tipsYou don’t have to be a great designer to create an awesome looking website. There are so many beautiful and customizable web templates available that there’s little excuse for publishing a poorly designed website. The web is a visual medium and if you want to stand out, your site needs to look great.

Sometimes changing just a few minor things on your website can improve your site design tenfold.

Remember, the best design is often design that does not call attention to itself.

Quick tips to better web design

1. Stick to a color palette.

Try to limit your website to just a handful of colors. Be consistent and use a site like www.colourlovers.com to pick out a killer palette. Continue Reading . . .

14 kinds of band photos you can share with your fans

Display Instagram photos on your websiteHostBaby just created an easy way for you to display your Instagram pics on your band website’s photo gallery.

[For more details, check out “How to display your Instagram photos on your website.]

This got me wondering about all the different kinds of photos bands are sharing with their fans (on Instagram, and elsewhere).

Pictures are super important online (obviously!). They convey a ton of information and feeling in a tiny amount of time. And when someone loves your music, they want to see it all:

1. shots of you performing live

2. press photos

3. pictures of you during soundcheck, or of the marquee before the show

4. album covers

5. concert posters

6. “gear porn” (photos of your instruments and recording equipment) Continue Reading . . .

How to display your Instagram photos on your website

 

Display Instagram photos on your website

Add an Instagram feed to your website’s photo gallery

Your fans can now view your latest Instagram pics on your HostBaby website, and they can click to follow you on Instagram right from your site’s photo gallery!

[What kinds of photos will keep your fans interested in your music? Click HERE for some ideas.]

It’s super easy to add your Instagram pictures to your HostBaby website, and the display will seamlessly match your chosen theme. Here’s how… Continue Reading . . .

5 steps to a pro musician website with HostBaby

5 steps to a professional music website with HostBabyJust because you have a bunch of social media profiles doesn’t mean you’ve established a web presence. A serious musician needs a professional website.

Luckily, HostBaby makes it easy to look like a pro online.

Create a website for your music in minutes!

Then follow these simple tips to build your web presence on a solid foundation:

Continue Reading . . .

Making text look awesome on the web: how to optimize your copy

Optimizing Web CopyPeople scan when they read websites. They don’t read every word. It’s just a side effect of our caffeine-infused, technology-addled brains.

So, to make it easier for readers to quickly discern what you are jabbering on about, make liberal use of the following techniques:

1. Learn to love lists. Lists are easy to read. Lists with bullet points are even easier to read.

2. Double space between every paragraph. It gives your text room to breathe.

3. Use headers that describe what the text that follows is about.

4. Never use fancy fonts for body copy. Use something like Helvetica, which is easy to read. Continue Reading . . .

Website optimization tip: reduce the clutter and noise on your pages

Reduce clutter and noise on web pagesSometimes visiting a website can be like visiting an amusement park.

You walk into it for the first time and your expectations are high. It seems like there’s lots of fun stuff to do, but you may not know where to start and you don’t know what choices will bring the most fun. So you start scanning the landscape looking for signs, looking for the biggest or shortest lines, looking for something to grab your attention and say “this way to the best ride you’ll ever experience.”

As a website owner, you can help direct the glazed-eyed visitors by reducing the distractions that do not contribute to your primary website goals.

1. Don’t use auto-play on videos or audio. There’s nothing quite as off-putting as a website that starts blaring audio as soon as you land on it. Let your visitors hit the play button themselves. Continue Reading . . .