DISCUSSION: 15+ Author Website Tips
Hello everyone! Over the years, I’ve read a lot of books and come across a lot of authors, many of whom I’ve worked with for the blog, either directly through them or through their publisher. Most of the time, I’ll have to go to Goodreads and/or the author’s website to get more info about them or their book(s) to supplement what I’ve given from the publisher. More often than not, I don’t find all of the information I’m looking for….and quite a few of the authors I’ve wanted to work with barely had any useful information on their websites at all (if they even had a website).
So, today, I figured I’d list what an author should and shouldn’t have on their website, all of which would help them reach more readers & influencers, and, in turn, get more sales. And stick around to the end if you’re interested in personal feedback on your own website 😉 Let’s go…
What To Include (general page ideas):
- About Me
- basically your author bio. if you want to include more personal things, go for it, but make sure you’re still watching what you say (legally, safely etc).
- where to talk about your book or books (see the following section about the content to include)
- if you have multiple series, have a page for each series under your books tab
- a list of any and all places that you’re going to, to promo your book/for professional reasons (aka you don’t need to put your personal trip to the Carribean on there or the writing retreat you and your friends are taking to Alaska)
- the specific days and times you are going to the place (Barnes & Noble in Hogwarts, Mars @ 7 pm – September 34th, 2018)
- any info or requirements about:
- is it a talk or just a signing or both?
- how to get tickets if they need any
- do you have to buy the book at the bookstore // are there any limits to what people can bring for you to sign?
- Contact Me
- the best way(s) to contact you whether it’s a contact form on the website, social media, letters, email etc.
- the best way(s) to contact your publicist whether it’s a contact form on the website, social media, letters, email etc.
- what people can and can’t contact you about vs what they should talk to your publicist about (ie. review copies, interviews, blurb requests etc)
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
- is a movie or tv series being made about your book? and, do people constantly think you can control whether or not a show/movie is made? put the answers in the FAQ page.
- are people emailing you about review copies, interviews, blurb requests when they should be sending it to your publicist? put the answer in the FAQ page.
- do people want to send you unsolicited manuscripts to get feedback or pass on to your agent? put the answer in the FAQ page.
- Extras (optional)
- if you’ve quizzes made about your books (are you a demon or a witch? take this quiz to find out!), videos, maps, teacher resources etc, put them here!
- If you don’t have any of those (and you don’t have to have them to be successful btw!), then there isn’t really any need for this page.
[Related: How To Get Your Book Reviewed – Part 1]
What To Include (specific content):
- a list of the books you’ve written (or the book you’ve written)
- a summary of each of your book
- links to where you can buy your books (Amazon, book depository, independent and other bookstores) as well as a link to adding them on Goodreads
- all the various collector’s editions of your book (with pictures!), what’s special about them and where you can find/buy them
- any preorder incentives you have:
- if there is any specific thing they should preorder (only an indie bookstore incentive or can they preorder from anywhere) or if they can also show a screenshot of them requesting their library to buy the book, to get the preorder incentive
- what you get if you preorder
- who is allowed to enter – is it US only? North America only? Open to everyone?
- how to enter – are they supposed to email a specific email? or is there a form they should use to send in their receipt/screenshot and address (if so clearly put a link to it on your page)
What NOT to do:
- use weird coloured backgrounds or writing (like yellow, purple or green) PLEASE. My eyes are already bad we don’t need to make them even worse lol
- leave your website un-updated….the number of times I’ve seen a website where the author has not updated their events list or not added their newest book(s) to their books page is too many to count. Pleaseeee update your website regularly (at least once a month).
- Put the link to your website in all your social media bios
- Make sure you put the year each event is in, especially if you will be leaving the event up on your appearances page after it’s over – you don’t need people getting confused/upset about an event that was in 2017 that they thought was in 2018 because the year wasn’t added and the event is still up on the page
- You don’t need to have a blog on your website….you don’t need to extend your energy to blogging if you don’t want to. It takes a lotttt of energy and time, and it is very much not necessary
And that’s really all I can think of in terms of tips and tricks. If you have any questions, concerns, or ideas, comment them below!
Also, if you’re an author who wants feedback on their website or their marketing plan, I now offer those services and have a total of 3 spots open for September/October 2018 so email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact me via my contact form ASAP to talk more!
Thanks, have a great day/night and tata for now! ❤
“Angel explains clearly what she can do for you. As a newbie to this process, she was patient and I already feel so much better about marketing my product.” – Talia Basma