People will have as many different ideas of what should go on their website as there are features and functions available, so any advice given is subjective too. Do also have a look at the piece on good practice in this feature. A little word of warning. It’s easy to add a feature simply because it’s possible or your software easily allows it, but try not to overwhelm visitors with too much activity or by trying to tell them EVERYTHING as soon as they land on your homepage.
These features and areas of information should probably feature on all community radio websites.
- A welcoming homepage
- An ‘About us’ page, with information on the station and its remit
- How to get involved as a volunteer or supporter
- Schedule and shows
- News/what’s new
- Contact details: postal, email, telephone
- Who your supporters are. Some funders may require you to put their logo on the site
- Links to other sites about your station, eg if you have a Myspace site or a blog
More useful features
- These additional functions appear on many community radio websites.
- Webcasting: facility to listen live via the internet for those who can’t tune in from a radio
- Podcasts: some programmes may be recorded and offered for listening again at a time that suits listeners
- Presenter profiles, possibly including a photo gallery
- Information on supporting you financially, for example making a donation, a webshop, advertisements for local businesses
- Advertisements directly on your website
- Links to other useful sites in the community and about community radio (eg the Community Radio Toolkit!)
- Your volunteer training programme
- RSS feeds to keep supporters up-to-date with news, podcasts, blog entries
Take a walk around a handful of community radio stations and you’ll find an intriguing mix of interactive features on offer such as blogs, forums, polls, chat rooms, texting and more. All these are designed to invite their listeners to get involved with the station and each other and thereby strengthen the community. Interested in developing this side of things on your website? A separate article is devoted to “Building an online community with interactive features” in the extras page.
You might want to refer to this good practice to content and design.
This document on building a websiteshould help you determine what software you might need.