Recently, we worked on a few author websites and shared the work on social media. A few authors got in touch with us for the same, having a wide range of questions. Should an author have a website? What are the benefits of author website? What should an author website look like? Could you please send me some author website examples? Where can I find the best website designers for authors? There were more such questions.
The purpose of my write-up here is to answer all these questions and help authors develop their own online influence. As a leading book blogger and digital marketer, I have seen from very close what the authors are looking for and what is the importance of an author website.
Whether you are a debut author, an emerging writer, or an established author, you should not ignore the advantages of author website design. In 2020, a website holds a lot of importance for the writers.
55% of the audience on social media and Amazon want to know about the author before considering a purchase of the book. This is all the more crucial for newbie and emerging authors because readers haven’t read any previous work of them. The readers will be investing their money and time to read the book. They want to see the writing style and quality of write-ups to set expectations from the book.
Unavoidable Benefits of Author Website
Here is a detailed list of the author website benefits, along with stats and examples:
1. Centralized Place for Readers
If someone wants to find your book, he has to visit Amazon or Flipkart. To stay up-to-date with your daily activities, he has to follow you on social media. In case someone wants to read your poems, articles, or helpful insights, he has to browse blogs/media portals, or news sections where you have got your things published.
How about centralizing everything about you at a single place?
On your website, you can not only showcase your books and write ups, but also link your interviews, press releases, event information, and more third-party content. Your readers wouldn’t have to search for you on multiple, distinct platforms and sites. Your website will do the needful and make things easier for them.
If some of your followers on Instagram want to join you on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or LinkedIn, they will have to do random searches. You can integrate all social media handles on the website, making it effortless for readers to find.
Furthermore, when you are interviewed by top book bloggers or media portals, they share the interview on their own social media handles. They look to tag/mention you in the post, but the search is quite difficult sometimes. When you have a site, they will simply find everything on it. Getting tagged and mentioned by others improves your visibility and brings new followers.
2. Build Online Influence & Credibility
Undoubtedly, this is one of the best advantages of an author website design. Every business today has its own website for a reason. One of those reasons is to build an online presence and influence. It not only brings reputation, but also helps in finding potential customers.
The same goes for the authors. Represent yourself as a brand with a blog or website. Author Preeti Shenoy has done this well over the years. She writes blog posts surrounding her own books, shares her favorite books, and has a books section from where the readers can purchase the book.
Author Durjoy Datta gives a lot of credit behind his success to blogging. Before publishing his first book, he used to write on a blog. Durjoy Datta’s first book, Of Course I love You, is something he had written in the form of blog posts on his website. Then he converted it into a book when he saw people loving the content and story.
When you share content on your website, people can read your work there and get influenced by your writing. When they are influenced by your writing, they will definitely consider a purchase of your book.
Furthermore, today’s generation has a mindset that if someone has their own website, they are credible and reputed. So, realize these benefits of an author website and get in touch with the best website designers for authors today.
3. Fight Competition
Thousands of new books are launched every single day. Publishers are way too busy nowadays in printing books that they have to shift manuscripts to a pipeline. That is the reason behind new publishing houses emerging out every day.
The competition is massive. To sell more books and find new readers, you have to make yourself stand apart from the rest. There are several ways to promote your book- launch events, offline and online advertising, paid bulk book reviews on Amazon, Instagram influencers, and more. Most of the publishers offer these services, but are way too expensive for every author to afford.
An author website is an alternate to all these book marketing solutions. Not every author has a website. When you have one, it becomes a plus point and helps you influence the readers.
For example, if there are thousand new authors published today with the same budget for book marketing, and only twenty of them have a website, then those twenty will be able to narrow down the competition.
4. Start Earning from author website
There are plenty of ways to monetize an author website and start earning money from it. I’ll surely write a detailed post about how to make money from a writer website. Till then, I’ll summarize some key points here.
One way is to get Google AdSense approval for your site. For this, your site should be at least six months old, have unique content on it, and should not be violating any of Google’s policies. You can then request for AdSense. Once approved, Google will show relevant ads to your visitors. More the impressions and clicks on those ads, the more money you make.
Second way is to offer backlinks to other bloggers and writers. Backlinks are good for SEO of the websites and improves rankings on Google. So, there are many writers and bloggers looking to create backlinks from authority websites. You can choose to publish their content for FREE or even ask for money for the same.
Third, you can show sponsored ads on your site in exchange for money. For example, a book publisher or business in your industry might like to place banner ads in the sidebar of your site and pay you on a monthly basis.
Fourth, you can create your own online courses related to your specialization, helpful ebooks, or other ecommerce products like customized t-shirts, bookmarks, etc.
Fifth, websites are a great way to start affiliate marketing. All you have to do is to join some relevant affiliate programs, promote their services/products, and start earning for every referral. For example, you can become an affiliate of Amazon or Flipkart.
5. Control over writing career
If you are someone who takes writing seriously and wants to explore this field for the long term, then you must have your own website or blog. It is because you can publish your articles, thoughts, observations, quotes, poems, news about books, and other related things on it. Most of the writers today are relying solely on Instagram and Facebook where people are for entertainment and comfort.
You can’t completely rely on social media to reach an audience and make them read your work. People may read your one-liners and quotes there, but wouldn’t spare time to read long captions. One reason behind this is that the users are also following other write-up pages, poets, and authors who are sharing similar content. Social media can’t be only your place to build credibility and find genuine readers for your work.
6. Sell directly with higher margins
Ecommerce platforms like Amazon and Flipkart help you sell the books to readers and charge some commission for the same. While these platforms are great for authors who get orders in bulk or are eligible for Prime membership.
Nowadays, Amazon won’t list your books among the products eligible for Prime before selling out 100 copies. Without Prime listing, the customers who are interested in buying your book will have to pay delivery charges of around 60 to 70 rupees, which is around half the cost of the original product.
For example, your book is priced for Rs 150 and there is a delivery charge of Rs 70, then the cost of the book becomes Rs 220. Then your goal becomes to reach those 100 readers first.
A website with credibility can also help you to sell those 100 copies fast and then accelerate the sales. Even if you want to sell directly from your site, you can do so by integrating the ecommerce features to it. That way, you can save commissions and increase the profit margins.
One fine example of someone doing this is author Rahul Kaushik. He is a well-known writer on Instagram, having an audience of 700K readers and writers. He always asks people to buy the book from his website. I haven’t seen his book listed on Amazon or Flipkart, still selling hundreds of copies every month.
If people love your work, they will purchase the book from your site and help you earn more without losing money in the commission.
7. Find better publishers & media
One of the reasons most of the writers today opt for self-publishing to get their book published is that the traditional publishers receive so many requests. The number is damn too high for the traditional publishers to review and shortlist.
Even if you have written a great story and might be worthy of traditional publishing, it doesn’t reach the panel members for shortlisting. This is because they are also looking for the name behind the story. They are looking for credible authors.
We have seen filthy writers getting published from Penguin and Random House, just because they are a brand or have a credible source to back them. With an author website design, you can build that credibility. Moreover, if your current publisher has been a disaster, you will land a better publisher for your next book.
8. Great for advertising and promotion
To run Google Ads for your book, you need to have a website. With this advertising option, you can reach readers whether they are visiting other websites, browsing mobile apps, searching things on Google, etc. One reason most of the authors choose only Instagram and Facebook ads is that they don’t have a website.
In case they need Google ads, they have to rely on the publisher (if they offer advertising) which costs very high. You have to pay for the ad budget, plus the charges for running the ad. Most of the budding authors are short on budget and they have to skip advertising.
When you have your website, you can run your own ads, drive traffic to the website and sell more books. Your website’s authority will also increase with this. Additionally, the people visiting your website will also be able to know more about your work, books, browse your write-ups, etc.
Moreover, you can attract the readers of famous authors to your site by writing blog posts like “best books by Indian authors”, “list of all the books by Chetan Bhagat or Amish Tripathi,” etc. When a reader looking for the best books by Indian authors comes to your site, you can creatively promote your own book there or add the book to the list of best novels. You shouldn’t be ignoring such benefits of author website.
9. Massive Networking Opportunity
A writer website brings a huge opportunity for networking with fellow authors, poets, bloggers, and readers. When you have your own website, you can get in touch with other writers to conduct an author interview (for example). This will not only help you build a connection with the author, but also bring the readers of that author to your site.
Top book bloggers in India and around the globe will be able to find you easily and will be interested to write for your blog to get a backlink and promotion. In return, you can get promotions on their website or even a YouTube channel.
This author website advantage shouldn’t be ignored. If you already have a website, it’s time to connect with book bloggers, book review sites, booktubers, etc.
10. Build Email List
In this era of digital marketing, the importance of email lists is known to everyone. We all receive plenty of promotional emails from brands and businesses every single day. They have your email and when they have any offer, new content/product/service, etc. on their site, they inform everyone with an email.
This helps in promoting and upselling the products. By integrating a newsletter sign-up form on the site, you can collect the emails of your visitors and send them an email notification whenever you publish a new post.
You can also send customized mails to inform them about the discount on your book during a flash sale on Amazon or Flipkart. Email lists have plenty of other benefits. There is a reason behind businesses hiring email marketing specialists.
Handing over to you:
I hope this article helped you understand the author website advantages . I have tried my best to answer all your questions like, what are the benefits of author website, the importance of an author website, along with certain tips, and key elements for writers.
If you are looking for the best website designers for authors at an affordable cost, we have got that covered for you. Our author website design services come with free web hosting, training to run the site, as well as some more freebies for your promotion.
For any questions or concerns, feel free to reach me out using the comments section below or using my contact form.
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