As a book reader and a blogger most of my non reading and non blogging time go to stalking visiting websites related to books, especially those of authors. I am sure we all have that special author(s) whom we can’t get enough of on their social media and would love to know more, even when they tweet almost every other day. The solution? The author website.
The case is particularly true for an indie or self published writer. In fact every time I get an book to review from a new author I immediately hop to the internet to check out their website. Not just to get a feel about the book but also to know more about the author and their writing style. I wouldn’t wanna miss out reading an author who has an interesting blog or website.
Of course you might think ‘why do I need an author website?’ especially when you are already screaming about your book and yourself on your social media accounts.
1) Your author website is a platform that you own
It doesn’t matter if your book was published traditionally or it is independent, it has become mandatory to put yourself out there as an author and make some noise. It can be through your tweets or your virtual book tours or any other medium you choose. But the bottom line is that authors are expected to be more than just writers.
You can ask ‘I am active on social media. Do I need another website separately?’ Yes. You do.
Every author, published traditionally or otherwise needs a website. Your social accounts are not owned or controlled by you. You don’t own them, even though you spend time to build and nurture your domain and followers on them. Any change in their policies will affect you directly.
Therefore, the author website should be the place where all your accounts point out to. It is the one stop shop for any details about you and promotion of your book(s). It might be self hosted or free, but it is essentially a hub where you can convert your subscribers into your fans.
2) Your author website builds your personal branding
A website you own should be the hub of all your internet activities. The website plays a main part of the image that you want to portray on to your readers. Right from your image on your author bio to the comments that you leave on others’ websites forms part of that brand.
With a self hosted website you can have professional looking email id like ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’ which will make you appear more professional. Your website should also include the details about your book (obviously), press release and media kit that conform to your brand image. Add a FAQ section to help your readers know more about you.
3) Your author website aides your growth
While your social accounts may be your place to talk about your current book and its promotion, your website should be the place that talks about you. It displays both your current book and everything else that you have already written or are writing.
More often than you know, many authors start with a book and end up writing a series. The website thus might become more than ‘read about my book here’ to ‘learn more about my writing here’. Get talking about your characters, your plot direction and engage more fans – all on your own space.
4) Your author website acts as your sales funnel
Remember your website is your very own space. So use it creatively and effectively. You can help your readers to browse your book(s) by adding a blurb or two. It needn’t be the same as you have in your Amazon or other seller’s site. Let them know how to buy your books and leave them direct links.
Some more ideas to spruce up your website and help your marketing:
- Make it easy for your readers to find you on the internet by showing off your social accounts.
- Some authors even add a shopping cart to help them purchase the book without leaving their site.
- Ask them to sign up for your newsletters and notifications about book tours, new works, launch party or even reading events.
- You can call for even beta readers among your fans, though you are using a professional reader as well.
- Post some sample chapters to create some interest and engagement.
- Share one liners from your reviews.
5) You decide what and when you want to update
Some authors might be reluctant to have an author website because they might have to update it frequently. Sure it is true that you have to update it once in a while, but you don’t have to blog there regularly.
I totally agree that most of my favorite authors are hard pressed for time and I would prefer them focusing on getting me the next book sooner to updating their blog about their dogs. (If you love blogging about your doggo, please do. I will be reading it with my eyes glistening. There are never too many doggo blogs.) It is definitely your choice to decide how many times you wanna blog in a month or year.
I know. I know I have made a word-y post and you are almost at the end and yet I have not shown you my favorite author websites. So here they are.
Some of my favorite author websites for inspiration:
Do not feel overwhelmed with all these websites. All we readers ask is a place to dig deeper about you and your books. So go ahead create a website right away.
Do you visit your favorite author’s website? Share us their link so that we will stalk them as well. What do you look for in them? If you are an author and you do have a website, leave a link and we will visit them. If you do not want to create one, tell us why. Let us talk.