Having a website establishes you as a credible author. It’s a great place to showcase your writing. And it provides a way for you to establish a fan base through followers.
Since you are already blogging, you are ahead of the game here. You may want to consider a second blog or website though depending on your audience.
For instance, my blog Surviving Mexico focuses on ex-pats in Mexico, some of whom may be interested in my books. I have a variety of ways that those readers can find my books including landing pages, featured posts, and sidebar ads.
My blog, Content Creative, is my author website where I give tips, post book reviews and author interviews and feature my books too. My target audience at Content Creative is other authors and book lovers. It’s a newer blog and I don’t have as many followers there yet, but it’s growing.
Here are some important things to consider when designing your author website.
It should be easy to find your name or brand on every page. Creating the perfect header is the best way to do this.
Notice on my Content Creative header, my author name C.E. Flores is clearly visible. While on my Surviving Mexico blog, the name of the blog and a pithy tagline “Adventures and Disasters” are shown. The emphasis on that blog is on the theme “Surviving Mexico” rather than me as an author.
People should be able to figure out how to subscribe to your newsletter, follow your blog, or find you on other social media sites.
On my sidebars, I have a way for people to sign up to receive emails when I post and link to Facebook, Goodreads, Twitter, and Instagram. I created Widgets for each of these components.
Your About or Bio page should be easily found. Some experts suggest having a short bio in the sidebar and then a longer About page.
On Content Creative, the home page is my bio while on Surviving Mexico, the About page is found from a drop-down menu.
Readers should be able to contact you, either through a form on the About page or on a separate Contact me page. You never know when someone will have something awesome to say about your books and you want to make it easy for them to share it with you.
You should also have information about your books.
Make a landing page for each book even if you have one page that lists them all. Include the book blurb, the cover image and links to your book on Amazon and Goodreads.
Keep readers coming back with engaging posts! Aim for regularity. It doesn’t have to be every day, but once a week or twice a month is good engagement. Remember to share useful information and interesting stories rather than plug your book every post.
Blogging may have come naturally to you but you may be wondering what should you write about as an author. Here are some suggestions.
Write about topics that are related to your book or other things you can be considered an expert on. Have you become an expert on Japanese teas? Talk about it. Is your book based in Japan? Then use that as an excellent way to segue into your book.
Keep up with current news events and find things to comment on in your post. Is the local library sponsoring a Read-A-Thon, well then, let the world know you’ll be there!
Interview other authors in your genre. Review other books that you think your readers would enjoy. Talk about the writing process. The point is to provide quality content to followers.
Offer book giveaways every now and then. Nothing piques a reader’s interest like a FREE BOOK! It’s easy to do using giveaway generators like Rafflecopter. Is your book on sale or free to download on Amazon? Share that information!
Make sure to share your posts on your social media sites. WordPress has a way you can set up automatic shares but look for opportunities on your own as well. Is today Boot Scootin’ Booty day and your book is about a cowboy finding love? Share it with appropriate hashtags. #bootscootinbootyday #cowboylove #nameofyourbook
Your author website will become your home platform, no matter which social media sites you use. Make it attractive and interesting!
Assignment: Set up your Author Website or adapt your current blog to meet the needs of an up-and-coming author (YOU)!