WordPress sites can be created to suit just about any need. That means it’s easy to set up an online store, a company profile, or even a place to display your music. At the same time, a music-focused website has particular requirements, so you’ll want some tools that aren’t present in a default WordPress installation.
Fortunately, there are numerous handy plugins that will enable you to add additional features to your site at the click of a button. These solutions can help you put together an aesthetically-pleasing portfolio of your work. If you like, you can even sell your music online by using event registration and ticketing software.
In this article, we’ll explain what functionality a musician’s website typically needs. We’ll also introduce six plugins worth checking out if you’re looking to build this kind of site. Let’s get started!
Why You May Want to Add Some Plugins to Your Music-Focused Website
These days, in order to sell your music you’ll need an outstanding website. While physical album sales are declining, digital downloads are on the rise. Crafting a strong online portfolio can help bring your work to the attention of your desired audience, and may even lead to new career opportunities.
As one of the most popular Content Management Systems (CMSs) in the world, it’s likely that your first thought when building a website is to use WordPress. Although the platform will provide a solid starting point, as a musician, you’re probably going to need some additional features.
For example, it will be essential to offer website visitors a way to listen to your music (or at the least, samples of it). Without that, they won’t be able to get a feel for how you sound, making them less likely to buy albums or gig tickets if they aren’t already fans.
It’s likely that you’ll want to set up an online store as well, and include a comprehensive events calendar. This will make it much easier for your fans to learn about upcoming concerts and appearances. Finally, including a bio page is also smart, as it will help people get to know you and/or the members of your band. You can add some key personal information to each bio, as well as links out to any social media channels.
6 of the Best WordPress Plugins for Musicians, Bands, and Recording Artists
What we’ve listed above may sound like an intimidating laundry-list of features. Fortunately, using WordPress means you’ll have access to a wealth of handy and relevant plugins. These will enable you to add new functionality to your site in minutes.
To get you started, here are six of the most essential WordPress plugins for music-focused websites.
First up, Audio Album enables you to upload songs and live performances directly to your WordPress site, so fans can listen to them without leaving the page they’re on. The provided media player is also mobile-friendly, and includes a wide range of customization options. That means you can fully adjust it to match the overall theme of your site.
This next plugin provides fully-featured event registration and ticketing software, which can be used for effective gig management. With Event Espresso, you can control every aspect of your performances – from the number of tickets you sell to the dates you go live.
You can both manage your events within the WordPress dashboard, and display them on your website. Visitors can see what’s available, purchase tickets and make registrations, then receive confirmation emails. You’ll even get access to apps that help you scan tickets and manage attendance at the events themselves.
Price: Plans start at $79.95 per year. In addition, there’s a free ‘lite’ version of the plugin that you can try out.
Like the last plugin, NextGEN Gallery wasn’t created solely for the benefit of musicians. However, it offers numerous features that make it easy to show off images on your site, via attractive and customizable galleries. This enables you to proudly display album artwork, photos of live performances, press shots of your band, and much more.
Price: The base version of the plugin is free, and there’s also a pro version with additional features.
WooCommerce is one of the most well-known WordPress plugins, and for good reason. It will enable you to sell music, merch, and just about anything else on your site. Products offered for sale can be physical or digital. You can also customize your online store in any way you like, and add features to it via free and premium extensions.
Price: WooCommerce is completely free, although there are some great paid extensions.
Your fans play a huge part in your success, so it’s important to create a strong online community for your music. wpDiscuz can help you do that, by adding an interactive comments section to your site where fans can get to know one another (and even communicate directly with you). This plugin will also filter out any annoying spam comments, keeping your community discussions distraction-free.
Price: The base plugin is free, and you can purchase premium add-ons to extend its feature set.
Finally, what’s the use in putting some great music online if it can’t be easily shared? With that in mind, AddToAny Share Buttons enables you to easily place a host of social sharing icons on your pages and posts. In fact, the plugin offers over 100 different button options, and will integrate with the most popular social media platforms. This lets visitors quickly share your work with their own online audiences.
A strong online presence is essential for any musician – regardless of whether you’re well-established or just starting out. Using WordPress as the base for your site helps you add in a wide variety of additional features – including social sharing buttons, embedded music players, and even event registration and ticketing software.
In this post, we’ve highlighted six of the key plugins that can make your music website a success. Let’s recap them briefly:
- Audio Album: This plugin will embed a customizable music player on your site.
- Event Espresso: With this tool, you can manage gigs and sell tickets online.
- NextGEN Gallery: If you want to display lots of imagery, this plugin has your back.
- WooCommerce: You can sell merch, albums, and digital files via an easy-to-navigate online store.
- wpDiscuz: This plugin is a useful way to bring your fan base together and develop a strong community.
- Add to Any Share Buttons: Using a social sharing plugin makes it easy for fans to promote your content, and expand your reach organically.
Are there any other plugins you’d recommend for musicians, bands, and other recording artists? Tell us about them in the comments section below!
Image credit: Pexels.
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