How to Create a Dynamite Author Website
One of the very first things you will want to do in promoting your new, literary-work-of-art is to create a whimsical website in which your audience can learn more about the book, buy the book, find out more about you, the author and read book reviews.
First things first, your website needs to be your readers and target audience's central headquarters- meaning all things book and author related can be found here. If, for example, you have written a book to supplement your business and you already have a website for your customers, it is great to include a section about your book on that site, but not sufficient enough.
Ensure you have a separate website, solely dedicated to your book and your readers, so as not to confuse them and to focus on your primary call-to-action- SELLING BOOKS!
Below are five of the most important elements to ensure you include in your site, as you begin your build and design of your author website.
#1 Include Your Book
This may seem obvious, but all too often authors, especially novice authors, forget to post links to purchase their book or even the cover of the book. Some don't do it justice and bury it down in lower sections or within weird internal pages of the website. Make sure you have a nice photo of the cover of your book (it's best superimposed onto a 3D template- if you want to get fancy) and it is positioned optimally at the top of your homepage.
In Addition to featuring the book itself, make sure visitors can easily purchase your book directly form your site or it's linked directly to Amazon or whatever online distributor you choose. If the experience is too cumbersome, don't expect too many sales.
#2 Insight into the Author
Besides the well written and intriguing book itself, nothing creates a great foundational fan base, like an interesting or relatable author. Ensure to also give this section prime real estate on the homepage of your website. In addition to telling readers a bit about your life story and how the book(s) came to be, give readers a little more insight into your mind and heart. I call these, 'gold nuggets'- they are little valuable, tidbits about yourself that make readers go wild!
#3 Book Reviews & More Book Reviews
Submit your finished manuscript to as many book reviewing sites and services as possible. Some authors even give away their book for some designated time in the beginning, in order to collect reviews and get the word out. Once you've collected ample reviews, feature them on your website in a prominent fashion i.e. a dynamic slider, give them a fade effect or give them their own dedicated page. After you've found a cool way to highlight your book reviews, submit and collect more reviews to feature!
#4 Book Events & News
Highlight all newsworthy updates regarding your book or associated events on your website. These can be press related interviews, upcoming book signing events or even other news that is easily aligned with your book subject and appeals to the same audience- these are value-adds.
#5 Social Media Presence
Establish an online presence with your readers. If you are not on social already, it is suggested to hire a professional to create this strong foundation, establish you the author as the subject-matter-expert and begin garnering an initial follower base. Branding consistency across all social channels is critical during this first phase. Unfortunately, you can lose credibility and readers, if you are not taken seriously, because of it. Secondly and after you've created your foundational presence, you'll want to begin using it to create influencing power in order to effectively increase your followers. This creates a wider audience in which to promote your book. The final phase is a more strategic plan of book promotional content and sharing, before, during and after your launch date.
Julia Maldonado is the Lead Designer & Founder for InTandem Digital Consulting. She has over 20 years of experience in Marketing, Advertising and Customer Experience spanning across different industries. 10+ years in website design, content writing and social media influencing.
To learn more about Julia, visit her on LinkedIn.
InTandem Digital Consulting provides various digital solutions to small and mid-size businesses. Our portfolio includes: Website Design, Social Media Management and Customer Experience Strategy. Our CX workshops are offered both in-person and virtually.
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