Helping you with the business of being an artist

How to Keep Website Visitors Coming Back

Creating a website that will get visitors to stay and look around and hopefully come back, involves a lot of thinking about not only the design of the site but how the content is presented. People love to be entertained so it is important that the content you feature on your site will not only express you but will be interesting to the viewer. Kelly Rae Robert’s website does a great job at expressing herself, which is extremely intriguing yet informational. It is not needed to go to the extreme as she did but it is a great example showing how to capture a viewer’s attention. Another example of a more simple yet effective approach is artist Anaharta Katkin. She uses an xx approach that, while not as flashy as Kelly Rae Robert’s, is just as effective. Each of these site are extremely useful aides when trying to discover what type of tone you wish to set with your website. Although they are both artist websites, the same concepts can be applied to any creative person’s site. You can use crazy and complicated setup to represent you or you can go on a more simplistic path. The following information will hopefully give you some more insight into where to go with your site to attract and retain as many visitors as possible.

Content

When creating a website you should always consider the content first. The navigation and structure will follow. Without well written content and attempt at SEO will fail. This content is what will keep people around. Make sure that it is engaging but still true to you and the message you wish to display.

Visual Content 

When it comes to organizing your visual information such as images or videos, it is important to put them into categories that make sense to your viewers. If you work in multiple mediums you can separate these images, videos, recordings, etc. into different galleries or pages of your website. You can also categorize your work into series, for example acrylic animal paintings if you are a painter, short stories if you are a writer, or, acoustic covers if you are a musician. By creating well organized galleries and series people will take your work more seriously and your site will be more easily navigated and understood. Images also really capture attention so having images that are large, or at least not thumbprint images, can help retain site visitors.

Written Content

In regard to written content, the About page is a good place to start. This is a great area to help people get to know you in an, attention grabbing, factual, yet short, written statement. This statement should be somewhere between 150 and 400 words and is your introduction to any new visitor. This will most likely be their deciding factor for whether they wish to keep looking around your website or not. It is also key to focus on the headings that you add to each post, article, gallery, and page. These headings will be another attraction point for viewers and will help distinguish what your website has to offer. Along with headings, titles and content captions within the galleries are extremely important. These will give viewers an insight into what they are viewing and make your creations more understandable to them. Specific details about creation process, where the image or video was taken, and where the piece was created, can give others a better view of you are your process, which can create an emotional connection. It is also important, when writing content, to make sure that you use lingo that people who are not in your creative field will understand.

Design

The first thing you should think about is your overall design feel. The design should be straightforward and easy to navigate. That doesn’t mean simple, it means that anyone could navigate through your website and figure out what they can click and what information they will find. The main design of your website should have something that engages the viewers. You are a creative! Which means you definitely have some aspect of your creative life that you can pull into the website to engage the visitors.  

Keep It Fresh

Visitors will return if you are updating regularly. Visual artists should always add new pieces as they are completed. Also consider a blog or events calendar to show more of who you are and where you will be.

Conclusion

The combination of good physical design of the site, as well as, interesting visual and written internal content, is the key to keep visitors visiting your site. The overall layout and items within the site are up to you, just remember that in order to engage your audience everything has to have it’s own place and be presented in a unique, true to you way.

 
The sources below have other good reference websites you can take a look at if you need any further ideas or inspiration.

Sources:

http://code.tutsplus.com/articles/inspiration-the-top-36-musician-web-designs–net-12735

http://www.webdesign-inspiration.com/web-designs/industry/music/

http://www.artbusiness.com/artist-websites-how-to-increase-traffic-keep-visitors-on-site.html

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