Hack-Proof Hosting: Comparing the Bluehost and iPage Security Features
Using a Free Domain Name Service
Using a Free Domain Name Service
Free Drupal hosting is a genuinely excellent service provided by a company who clearly understands the needs of those who are following their dream on a budget. If you’re a musician using Drupal you may have various needs for your website: most importantly, of course, you need a platform to showcase your genius. Social media is a vital marketing component, but a truly dedicated musician needs a website of their own, complete with its own domain name.
Thankfully, a number of specialist web services – such as Drupal - provide a variety of ways for musicians to use free hosting to showcase what they do on their own website: including social media integration, e-commerce capabilities, and audio/video streaming.
Musician-specific website features
Any musician’s website should include a few vital components. First and foremost, your basic information. Someone has just heard your music and wants to know more! Maybe someone wants to contact you to book you for a wedding or sign you to their record label. Secondly, when are your upcoming gigs? A calendar app is essential to let your fans know when they can see you live. Thirdly, some samples. These days money isn’t made from the music itself, so why not let people hear your amazing work by providing audio streams of your best songs. If you have videos, even better. Fourthly, let them know where they can buy your latest album! Provide links and help people make you rich. You might even want an online shopping cart if you’re selling your music directly.
Additional tools that will likely be available include mailing lists for marketing, an integrated blogging platform, and support for mobile devices - a frequently underestimated component, but an increasingly vital one!
Social media support
A social media presence can be a great complement to a full-featured website. Posts and tweets can provide brief news updates, and link back to the website for full details; hosts with integrated blogging can also send tweets to alert followers of new blog posts. You’ll still have musician-specific marketing tools in your free Drupal hosting package, and lots of companies allow songs and videos to be uploaded and showcased.
Most importantly, you want someone who has just fallen in love with one of your songs to be able to share it with the world at the click of a button.
Different types of designs available
Some free hosting options will handle the design work, so even musicians with little or no technological expertise can easily manage their platform. Some will even provide a fully unique, custom design: a more expensive option but one that will inevitably produce the best results!
Other services may allow an artist to pick from a selection of pre-designed templates. These will be less expensive, because the design work is already done: the musician can pick whichever template will best showcase their music on Drupal and "fill in the blanks" with their own details. This type of design will likely not be as individual, but can be cost-effective and easy to use. Many of these provide a wide range of features: marketing and PR, professionally written web copy, Flash animations, and even photography services.
Shop for the best value
Choose wisely! Features vary depending on which host you go for, and you need to consider all the options before you buy. Some packages include limited bandwidth - which can be an issue if you want to showcase your music via streaming or downloadable tracks - and will charge you if you go over it. Make sure you consider how much bandwidth you’re likely to use when choosing between different packages!
Seeing as you already know what you’re looking for (after having read this article) just make sure you choose a hosting service that includes it (most do) and go for the cheapest option!