What is a portfolio basically? Have you ever seen an artist’s portfolio? Have you ever flipped through pages of a sketchbook showing how a certain piece of art has transformed from a rough sketch to a masterpiece? Well, a portfolio or specifically portfolio website is assembly of your masterpieces. A portfolio website defines your worth as a designer, artist, animator or whoever you are as a professional. It puts forward your capabilities and shows the potential you have in you.
Today we will look into some important tips on how to design a portfolio website and how to get users to your portfolio website. Let’s start and see how we can make it very simple:
Tip 1: Get Started
Believe it or not a person is never very motivated to design a portfolio website unless a need occurs. You have to be fully motivated and push yourself hard to get started. Think of all the customers you may get after you have launched the portfolio website. Think of your business, think of a brand new car, anything that would get you started. In the end it’s going to be worth the hard work after all.
Tip 2: Narrow it down
Are you a graphic designer, logo designer, animator, artist, actor or architect? Whoever you are you have to choose the attributes that define you. What areas are you specialized in? Are you a guitarist, painter, a web designer may be? Try to be specific. Users tend to be more satisfied when they know who they have come across. They never forget the quote, “Jack of all trades, master of none”, so you should not forget that either.
Tip 3: Target Audience
Some people think, it’s my portfolio website, then why should I be thinking about the target audience. But, the target audience of a portfolio website is as crucial as any other website. You should be careful about your target audience as they are going to be your potential customers. You may not care in case you do not want any customers; the latter is something that only 2 per cent people would want.
Tip 4: Keep it Simple
Simple is beautiful and a portfolio is better suited simple until or unless you want something extraordinarily marvellous. Well, simple can be marvellous too, can’t it?
Tip 5: Be Straight Forward
Don’t make your customers keep guessing what you are offering them. Be straight forward. Your portfolio should reflect your skills in the most straight forward way.
Tip 6: Define Yourself
Write a biography or make someone else write it for you. An introduction is always helpful in telling the users who you are. A few words about your profession would add to the user’s knowledge and will give them a clear view of you as a professional.
Tip 7: Navigation
Whether it is beautiful or ugly, a portfolio website should have a fully functional navigation. Don’t let your users keep wondering and quietly leave the website because your navigation did not link back to the home page.
Tip 8: Show Your Masterpieces
Everybody loves their own work to bits, but that doesn’t mean every work is a masterpiece. You have to be your own critic while selecting the best of work. After all it’s your portfolio and you don’t want to turn off the visitors. Show your work to others and get their opinion, you may not like something but it might look good to others, so a little outside help in this area will do you good.
Tip 9: Keep it User Friendly
A website is good for nothing if it is not user-friendly. You don’t leave the user with a choice other than leaving if you don’t make it user-friendly. Your website should be so clear and user-friendly that even a user with minimum computer skills can use it easily.
Tip 10: Keep it Updated
Don’t neglect it once you have designed your website. You must keep an eye on it and see which changes you can make in it for better.
Tip 11: Make it a Little Social
The next question that arises is how to promote your portfolio website. Social networks can do wonders to promote your portfolio website for free. Add floating social share bar on your work sample pages to promote your portfolio website and make it popular. You never know a tweet or two can win you some potential customers! Add share bars on your website to spread your work on popular social network and bookmarking websites. One of the best share bars is provided by sharethis.com.
Good luck. Hope these tips will help you create a successful portfolio website!
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