In this age of the Internet, authors should take advantage of electronic publishing, and create online profiles to become visible and accessible to readers globally. Today there are various channels for authors to build their online presence. If an author wants his/her work to be read globally, then it will be a good idea to build an author website that contains an author page, reviews and social media links. Today, there are a host of options to run a website, ranging from do-it-yourself ones to professional web developing services. Read on to learn about these.
Use Do-it-yourself (DIY) websites
DIY websites are very popular these days. Wordpress.org and Wordpress.com are websites that offer a host of themes and customizing options. Through Wordpress.org, you get access to plugins and custom themes to personalize your website. If you are tech-friendly and familiar with coding, then you can navigate this site comfortably. Wordpress.com offers free web hosting and has a limited collection of themes. Squarespace is another user-friendly website builder and hosting service that comes with SEO tools. Their packages start at $8 a month. Other equally useful website builders are Wix and Weebly that provide hosting solutions on a freemium model.
Hire a web developer
If you are not comfortable with navigating websites, then hiring the services of a web designer is a wise choice. It is a good idea to check out other fellow author websites for inspiration. “Fancy or flashy websites might look cool the first time you see them, but they get annoying fast,” says Linda Nagata, a self-published author. “People are visiting your website because they want information. Give it to them in a simple, straightforward way.” An aspiring author should be able to effectively communicate with designers about expectations. He/should check if the website is suitable for their writing. It is always better to keep your website simple, user-friendly and clutter-free. When hiring website developers, bear in mind the costs involved. Good website developers charge more because they offer quality. However, if you don’t have the budget to hire the services of one, you can also purchase pre-made themes created by professionals at a fraction of the cost.
An author may possess an awesome website, but if it doesn’t rank in the top listings in search engine results, then your work goes waste. So you should use an accurate website title, meta description and relevant keywords. A meta description describes your page to search engines and usually appears below the website title when a user searches something on Google. What are keywords? Keywords are words/phrases that describe the website/webpage content. As an author, you should use relevant keywords in your content that are aligned to what a user searches on Google.
Optimize your site
Once you have your content ready on your website, the next thing you should do is update your content regularly. Ensure that your content is new and interesting to your readers. For instance, if your reviewers or critics or readers have said something praiseworthy, then include them as testimonials in the homepage. This will assure readers that you are an active author.