5 Best Platforms for an Online Writing Portfolio
As a writer, having an online writing portfolio to display your work gives potential clients a way to sample your talent without much effort. Finding the right platform to host your portfolio can be challenging if you're new to the online realm. Fortunately, there are plenty of websites that can help you curate your work in one central place to show the world what you've got.
Why You Need a Strong Web Presence
As mobile technology makes accessing the Web easier for anyone with a smart phone, having an online presence for your writing portfolio is no longer an accessory, but also a requirement for getting noticed by clients. They can access your website from anywhere and get a glimpse into your strength and skills, as well as contact you for future orders and questions they may have. Think of it as a one-stop shop for all the services you offer.
The Best 5 Platforms for an Online Writing Portfolio
A platform that meshes mobile accessibility with easy-to-use features are best for writers and bloggers. Each of these has their own offerings and disadvantages, but with a little tweaking and exploring, you will find the best platform for your needs.
If you're familiar with Weebly, you may think that a platform designed for easy e-commerce is an unusual place for a writer to have a portfolio. Weebly's customizable features and drag-and-drop design allow you to create a presence that showcases your work and lets clients find you with its focus on SEO.
Weebly has a strong focus on boosting your SEO so that your website shows up on the coveted first page of a Google or Yahoo search. If you're a writer on-the-go, Weebly also provides an app for smart phones and tablets that allows you to write posts and network from wherever you are. This makes your site easily usable from any device.
As an added bonus, Weebly also provides excellent customer and technical support around the clock so you can work on your website during peak creative hours.
WordPress has been a long-time player in the blogging game and has been the the first choice of many writers. Before you start working on the platform, there are two different dimensions of WordPress to keep in mind:
- On WordPress.org, you are the host of your own website with your own unique web address.
- On WordPress.com, absolute beginners can start a free blog instantly, hosted on Wordpress' server with many upgrade options available.
Similar to Weebly, WordPress employs a WYSIWYG (What You See is What You Get) platform, showing you exactly what your finished blog post will look like. It also makes strides to pump up SEO with choice plugins, so you can focus more on the writing at hand. WordPress is home to many a blogger, so you'll find plenty of networking opportunities here.
SquareSpace is a great platform to start with if you just want a place to showcase your writing. From a writing-as-a-business perspective, it lacks in several features that you need to keep your name on clients' minds.
SquareSpace is a platform more targeted towards designers and artists but if you include photography or other images in with your writing, you'll have some more wiggle room. Like most platforms, it includes integrated hosting but that's where the similarities seem to end.
While there are pre-made themes that may give you the creative space you need for your writing there are a lot of features that get sacrificed, such as SEO needs and limited customization.
For the price, you get what you pay for as SquareSpace offers both basic free packages and cheap monthly subscriptions that include more options.
Wix is a little like Weebly, however a lot more turnkey. As a free platform that offers easy customizing features, Wix can have your website up and running in just a few minutes.
Wix excels in the customization department, giving you the ability to tweak fonts, backgrounds, images and many other aspects of the theme you choose. It's perfect if you want your writing to evoke a certain image for clients when they think of you such as a trademark font.
Wix combines the best of Weebly and WordPress in many ways, including the SEO advancement features, as well as 24/7 customer technical support.
However, the downside of Wix is that it is more of a virtual flyer than a good place to blog and show off your work. A great work-around for this is that you can set up your webpage to pull in posts from your regular blog feed.
Google fans will most likely find their blog home with Blogger, Google's own blog platform. Simple and straight to the point, Blogger can have your new website up and running quickly and without much hassle. For those on a budget, Blogger is free - meaning there are no premium templates that you'll have to shell out some cash for.
Combining Blogger with AdSense, another of Google's creations, you have the option of accepting ads that visitors will see, which gives you a little bit of cash back for visits. Blogger also allows you to include a domain name if you already own one.
For those who are less tech-savvy, Blogger is a great place to get started if you are unfamiliar with coding but does have the option of being able to use it if you know how. Blogger is easy to use but may not have the complete control you may want from your website.
Creating your online writing portfolio is easy when you know where to start. You are the ultimate authority on how your future website looks so take the time to try out the features of platforms that call to you and don't be afraid to switch if something doesn't work. Good luck!