Over the past month or two, I’ve been spending a great deal of time going from state to state visiting every radio station website I can find.  It’s quite a big task.

In my online travels, I’ve seen some remarkable things being done and it’s easy to tell that some radio stations are benefiting from a stable and fresh online presence.  However, the number of websites that fall short is alarming.

Way too many radio stations have outdated or brochure-type websites that give little reason for listeners to return after their first visit.  The key to any successful website, no matter what business it is, is return visitors.  We believe radio stations should see an abundant return on their online investment.  In order for this to happen, there has to be a bigger emphasis on digital.

Here are 5 things you can do with your radio station website to start generating more online revenue, regardless of what provider or online method you choose.

1) Add Fresh Local Content to the Home Page

Your site should be a destination that people visit often – not only when you have a big contest or promotion. Ideally this fresh content should be local or format news that changes daily. Listeners shouldn’t have to look for content when they come to your site. Give them great teases throughout your site and make them want to stay on your website longer and click around.

I should note here that RSS feeds from outside sources like CMT, Rolling Stone, TMZ, etc are very BAD for your station. They only take listeners away from your website and, most importantly, the advertising clients you should have there.

2) Make Your Site Responsive to All Devices

Most online traffic now is mobile traffic. So, there’s no escaping that your station website has to look great on mobile devices of all shapes and sizes. Pinching and pulling with your fingers to read content is a very bad thing. Google actually penalizes websites that are not mobile responsive. So, if your website isn’t responsive to mobile devices you are missing out on return traffic and you’re slowly losing out on being found on Google.

3) Add More Local Features

We believe smaller market/local radio station websites have the ability to become hyperlocal hubs where listeners go to find out anything that’s happening within your community. To do this, think of everything your audience would like to visit for like obituaries, list of church functions, local events, high school team schedules, business directory, etc. The more features you have, the more content you have to draw listeners back and the more sponsorship opportunities you can present to advertisers.

4) Link Everything on Social Media Back to the Website

Social media is great. But I can bet that you haven’t received one check from Facebook for sending listeners to your Facebook page – a place where they control the advertising. So, it makes much more sense that everything you post on social media link back to your station website – where you control the advertising.

5) Collect E-mail Addresses

The number one rule of online marketing is to build your e-mail database so you can market to your audience one on one when appropriate. Good e-mail campaigns include newsletters (full of news posts that link back to the website), major contests, concerts and other events, etc. All of these can be sponsored in some way. The bigger your e-mail list, the more you can charge advertisers to be placed within e-mails you send. Just be sure to never spam your audience with advertising because nothing kills an e-mail list faster.

How does your radio station website stack up to these methods?  Skyrocket Radio websites will help you accomplish all of these.  We’re passionate about helping smaller market radio stations make a big difference in their community and with their online revenue.  Check out our “Bigtown” radio station website here or click here to get signed up.