An online portfolio allows a freelancer or agency to present a range of skills to potential clients or employers. When you build an online portfolio website, it can make the difference and win contracts or a job.
To get started with an online portfolio, you will need to create a website with its own domain name or you can sign up for online portfolio tools. Once you have them created you can then start applying techniques so that you can stand out among your competitors online.
With millions of internet users, people are more likely to find you and book your services if you are able to brand and organize your portfolio accordingly.
Here are five tips for creating an online portfolio that makes a difference.
A potential customer must instantly identify your skills when they see your portfolio website. Too many animations, pop ups and banners could prevent them from seeing clearly or worse, cause them to close your page and never come back. To avoid getting your visitors frustrated with too many distracting pop ups, the goal is to create a simple portfolio website. Navigating through the website must be as simple as ABC.
What needs emphasis and highlight is your work not the features of your website. And this works should build confidence in the client else they won’t contact you.
The important pages that should be included in your website are the Home, Portfolio and Contact pages. You should also include your social network add-ons to inspire trust and for them to know that they are dealing with a real person.
Send a clear message
When creating an online portfolio website, a graphic designer or visual artist, for example, should keep in mind that his work should be the central message. For example, if your specialization is in the designing of logos, then your portfolio website must present this information clearly.
When choosing the jobs to highlight, quality must take precedence over quantity.
The most accomplished achievements and best designs must be placed at the top of the portfolio. Visitors may not necessarily take the trouble to check your entire work.
Insert a logo and catch
The logo and tagline facilitate the transmission of the main message of an online portfolio. As discussed above, the potential customer must identify the key message at a glance. Also it is essential to add a logo or a brand name at the top of the page with a hyperlink leading to the homepage.
In addition, a succinct ‘About me’ allows inform visitors of who you are; summarizes the identity of the designer, where he or she lives and what he or she does. An example “My name is Craig Adams, I am a Graphic designer in New York and I specialize in designing eye catchy 3D logos”.
A tagline should convey the right message on your portfolio website.
Add customer testimonials
Presenting recommendations from satisfied clients or from employers can establish a relationship of trust. Beyond giving credibility, it encourages the prospect to contact the designer. There are two possibilities: add a “recommendations” section or place the testimonials under the projects concerned. This kind of content is likely to make a difference if a customer is still reluctant to hire a designer.
After each successful project, you should solicit the client for writing a recommendation.
Create a contact section
Needless to say, build an online portfolio the “contact” section is essential. Whether it’s a whole page or a single section, the “Contact Me” should be identifiable quickly, regardless of the medium on which the client is browsing through your website. The phone number and email address should also be present at the top or bottom of the page. Adding a contact form is optional.
In addition, adding Twitter buttons, Facebook and any other relevant social network can increase the visibility of the designer.
What tool can you use to build an online portfolio?
hPage is a website builder which allows you to make a free website by dragging and dropping pre-built modules. It’s perfect for beginners and amateurs who don’t know how to code.
Once connected to hPage.com, you can either select an existing portfolio template. You can then start adding your content through the page editor and adding your files under the ‘Files’ menu. You may also use the business features available on site and apply them to your pages.
With hPage, you can choose from a variety of international domain names like .com, .net, .info, .org or country-specific domain names like .de or .it.
They will also help you setup your professional e-mail addresses that go with your custom domain name (e.g. [email protected]). Best of all, there are no extra charges as the domain name and e-mail addresses are included in your package.
If you are on a budget and don’t have $5 to spare for a monthly fee, you can still keep using hPage. The only downside is that you don’t get to access the premium features, premium website templates, and get a custom domain.
With a hPage website builder, building a portfolio and showcasing your business is simple and easy.
Put in SEO work
The most beautiful portfolio in the world would be useless if it is not seen by anyone or seen by the wrong people.
To be visible on the Internet, your portfolio website must be well referenced in search engines like Google. Being “well referenced” means coming out in search query results that match the audience you want to attract.
Use the keywords that are used by Internet users to search for your type of services in the titles, Images and Meta tags of your webpages. This will strengthen your SEO and allow you to be visible on Google and Google Images; this search engine is frequently used by Internet users to do research.
Also share your website on Social Media like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Furthermore, you can post on LinkedIn groups, blogs or forums related to your niche.