Building a Website For Your Writing Business
When you're a freelance writer, marketing yourself is important; in fact, it is your livelihood. Few writers get by without creating a website to showcase their business and writing skills, and you won't find any top earners who don't have at least one website. Many have multiple sites, as well as page profiles at various other locations. Essentially, you don't need a website, but building and marketing a website will definitely boost your income potential.
If you're a beginner, you don't need a fancy website. In fact, flash animations and other kooky distractions only take away from what you're here to do - write. Simple is better. You have two main website building options:
- Build it yourself
- Pay someone to do it for you
Before you run away scared, keep in mind that building a simple website is not difficult. As a writer, you already know how to do the bulk of the work - sell yourself. You'll buy a domain name and hosting plan from an online company (I recommend GoDaddy.com), and through most sites, you can also purchase website building tools.
Paying someone else to build your site, though, is the best option for some writers. If you have the money and don't want the hassle of doing site creation, you can work with a designer to create the look and feel you want. You have more freedom this way, but be prepared to pay hundreds or even thousands of dollars, depending on how big of a site you want and how fancy you want that site to be.
You don't need to have a website with hundreds of pages, but there are some common elements that every writer's website should have, including the following:
- A homepage, which introduces potential clients to your site and includes a clear navigation bar
- About me - a page devoted to tell potential clients a little about your background
- Your resume (some people like to put their resume on their About Me page)
- Uploaded clips or links to past work
- Contact information
You can also include your rates, though this might limit the jobs you get right from the start. In the freelance writing world online, many people already have set rates they are willing to pay. If the rates you've listed on your site are lower, they may think that you aren't a good value or you may miss out on the higher rates. Other option information include a blog, links to other writing websites, and pictures. Remember, though - this is a professional website, not a personal page.