Is Your One-Page Website Hurting Your Career?

Is Your One-Page Website Hurting Your Career?

Why a one-page website will frustrate your fans

I’ve come across quite a few websites lately (mostly band websites, but a few author sites too) that consist of a single page with a bunch of external links in the top navigation (Facebook, Twitter, SoundCloud, CD Baby or other music store, WordPress or Tumblr Blog, SongKick for tour dates, etc.).

There might be a brief bio or photo on that page, but as soon as I want to discover more about the band or author I’m linked elsewhere. And I want to ask them, “WHY!? Are you too cool to look like you actually put some thought into your website copy, flow, and design? Do you really expect the next promoter or blogger who lands on your site to go to 10 different websites just to get the basic info they need?”

There’s a difference between minimalism and having missing elements

If your entire website consists of a single page as some attempt to simplify your online life, well — I applaud your motives, but must register my objections to the end result.

If your single-page website is some attempt to be obtuse or arty, well then I object to your motives AND the finished site.

Your art is your art. Your website is your business.

What does a visitor to your website want?

When someone visits your site, they want quick access to:

* photos

* bio

* event dates

* audio and video

* press kit

* contact info

… and that’s at a minimum.

What visitors don’t want:

They don’t want to have to visit five other websites or social platforms to piece together your career.

So the lesson is simple — make sure your website has the basic elements a visitor expects to see. And if you do link to an outside site, only link to where the value is!

Instead of linking to a video on YouTube or Vimeo, embed those videos right on your website. Instead of linking to your newest track on SoundCloud, embed a SoundCloud player. Instead of just linking to your latest review, include the best parts in a blog post–then link to it. Get it? Keep them on your site. You’re website is your storefront. Stop sending people to the store across the way.

Not to say all links are bad. Just be judicious when you link. If you never update your Facebook page, don’t link ’em to Facebook. If your SoundCloud account has the same audio that you’ve got on your website — don’t link ’em to SoundCloud.

OK, you get the point. It’s a basic point, but one that I thought was worth repeating since I’ve encountered so many bands and authors lately who seemed to have missed it when designing their sites.

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[Picture of chain links from Shutterstock.]

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