Copyright August 26, 2013 Marcie Hill All Rights Reserved
A website is the most essential tool in an author’s marketing toolbox. In addition to serving as the online home for your book, it’s great for marketing, promotions and building a community around your book.
Whether you have a simple site for a single book or an elaborate site for multiple books and products, following are 11 must-haves for all author sites.
Information About New Release
You want the world to know about your new book, and your website is the best way to spread it. At a minimum, this information should include:
- a catchy headline to attract your readers’ attention;
- an engaging book summary to keep their attention;
- a clear image of cover the book; and
- a book preview or chapter download so they can try before they buy.
If you have published other books or created other products, include them on your site, especially if they supplement the new release. You may be able to create packages to boost your sales and earning potential.
You want to make it very easy for people to contact you. Therefore, this information should be on every page of the site.
Make it very easy for customers to purchase your books and products by putting your shopping cart in a prominent spot on your site, or on a separate page, with a big, bright colored “buy now” button. Also, ensure that your PayPal or other account works so your payments can be processed in a timely manner.
Testimonials, Reviews and Interviews
All testimonials, reviews and interviews pertaining to your book should be posted on your site. If you don’t have any, ask friends, family members, book reviewers, bloggers and “qualified” strangers to read your book and write reviews and testimonials before you launch and in the early stages of your launch. After you gain a bit of traction, start requesting interviews and other guest appearances.
About the Author
People want to know about the person behind the book. Give them details about who you are, what you do personally and professionally, and why you wrote the book. Your story may actually help sell the book, especially if you connect emotionally with the readers.
E-mail Sign-Up Form
An e-mail sign-up form allows you to capture the names and e-mail addresses of people who are genuinely interested in you and what you have to offer. Use this information to keep them abreast of your appearances, successes and new books or products.
Social Media Connections
Encourage people to connect with you on your social sites and to like your Facebook page if you have one. Traditional publishers and advertisers want to know how big your platform is, and these connections are a way to grow yours.
Blogs are a great way to connect with authors and fans through conversations. You can use them to get feedback on current books and generate ideas for new books. And if you are a little low on funds, you can use your blog as a website until your book sales overflow.
Use an event calendar to help promote yourself and your book. Let your readers know where you are presenting or speaking; when your next book signing is scheduled; or the next book fair where you will be a vendor at. Local supporters may stop by and help you sell your book.
Calls to Action
Here are some calls to action you should have on your site: “Buy now”; “Order today”; “Call us for more information.”
Above are 11 must-haves all author sites should have. Which of these do you use on your site? How have they helped you market and sell your book?
Marcie Hill just launched her new Kindle book, “62 Blog Posts to Overcome Blogger’s Block, the only blog book written to date that focuses exclusively on blog writing and content creation.
She is also a published magazine writer and blog addict who owns five blog sites The Write Design Company; Marcie Writes; Real Skate Stories; Shorty: Your Chicago South Side Resource; and Overcoming Blogger’s Block.
Connect with her on any of her sites or on Twitter @Marcie_Hill.