Are you looking for ideas for author websites? Look no further than our author website samples, which you’ll find at the bottom of this article. In these samples, you’ll find plenty of inspiration.
Before you scroll down, let’s take a step back. When you’re seeking ideas for author websites, it’s easy to overlook some of the basic components in favor of the bells and whistles. So, before delving into the samples, let’s go over some of the basic features of an author website and why you need them.
Feature Your Latest Release
The most-visited page on any website is usually the Home page. It’s like the cover of your book; it either draws a visitor in or makes them abandon the site!
Thus, the Home page is the perfect place to feature your most recent book. Include a beautiful image of the front cover, the back cover text, your best review or endorsement, and a button to buy the book.
Remember: make it easy for people to buy your book! It’s surprising how often authors hide this important information on their websites.
Locate the Most Important Information “Above the Fold”
Of course, there are no folds on your website. “Above the fold” refers to what is visible to a visitor when they first open your website and before they scroll down. The “fold” is the bottom of the screen. While it’s somewhat irrelevant on a mobile site —where scrolling is inevitable — it’s very important to feature your most important information above the fold.
The amount of time people spend on a website before they decide to either leave or investigate further is shrinking all the time. The decision to scroll down or not scroll is just that: a decision.
And you don’t want people to make too many decisions before they get to the most important decision: buying your book.
Thus, the portion of your website that appears above the fold must look beautiful and contain compelling content. You should also avoid tall headings that take up a chunk of the space above the fold without saying anything.
To put this space to the best use, locate your latest release here, along with a compelling line from your best review, and the Buy Now button linking to your book’s Amazon page.
By creating an author website rather than a book website, you can include all your books on one site. Because it’s an author website, your name should be located in the header of each page in the form of a graphic; this is all part of your brand. Your brand needs to be consistent across all of your promotional material, including your website. You can ask your designer to create a logo for you.
Make it easy for potential book buyers to read reviews of your book by including a page on your website dedicated to book reviews. Copy the best reviews over to this page and link back to the original reviews if possible (e.g., to the blog where the original is located or to the magazine website).
Believe it or not, links out to other websites can help your search rankings on Google.
Include a Buy the Book button on the Reviews page; use this button liberally throughout your website!
Mailing List Sign-up
While the thought of sending out regular newsletters might keep you up at night, building your community is essential for book sales—if not for this book, then for your next.
People LOVE to hear from authors. If you don’t want to write a blog (the best way to keep people coming back to your website), then at least send them monthly notes via an email marketing program such as MailChimp (free for up to 2,000 subscribers). When you’re ready to launch your next book, you’ll have a ready made list of people—and potential book buyers—to notify.
Include the mailing list sign-up form on every page of your website.
One incentive to get people to sign up to your mailing list is to promise to send them an excerpt from your book in return for their email address.
Social Media Links
Let website visitors know how to keep in touch with you on social media by including the links to your Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube and any other social media accounts you maintain.
The links should appear on each page; the header or footer (or both) are ideal places to locate your social media links.
Easy to Update
The beauty of a website is that it is not static, and it costs virtually nothing to update it with new content such as text, images or video. You’ll need to update your website with new reviews as they are published and with new books.
Choose a platform for your website that includes a CMS—Content Management System—one that is easy to use. CMS is just a fancy term for where and how you type in new text or upload images and video.
Alternatively, hire someone you can trust to update your website as needed. Simply email that person the new content and let them upload it for you.
Ideas for Author Websites: Author Website Samples
Without further ado, here are six website samples. Click on the links to view the samples online.
The best thing? These samples are all available for you from 1106 Design and all use the gold standard CMS: WordPress. Find out how 1106 Design can create your website for you using one of the following samples, or simply scroll through these samples for your own design inspiration.
Best Seller: A popular template that features attention-grabbing animations and clear calls-to-action that will engage your site visitors with a fresh, contemporary vibe.
Novella: Featuring creative typography and bold graphics, Novella is the perfect theme to showcase your books and build your author brand.
Fable: A slick, one-page theme that features large, full-width imagery, multiple calls-to-action, smooth animations, and responsive scrolling.
Lyric: Designed to engage new site visitors and excite returning readers, Lyric’s clean lines and unique look and feel are sure to make a statement.
Sonnet: A bold, attention-grabbing design, Sonnet is the perfect template to make a splash. Captivate your audience with its elegant and trendy design.
Thoreau: An all-purpose, clean design that showcases your brand with simple animations, mobile-friendly layout and trending design features.