By: Diana Urban
These days, author websites are much more than static business cards. They’re now a valuable marketing tool serving as the hub of an author’s online activity, from displaying their books to blogging to participating in social media. These elements allow authors to grow their reach and increase book sales.
If you’re designing an author website, what should you be sure to include? We scoured dozens of successful authors’ websites to see what elements they include the most often. While every website has slightly different goals, and an author’s genre and personality set a unique tone for their site, these are frequently used elements that anyone building an author’s website should consider including:
1. A list of published books
An author website can be a useful sales tool. Many sites include a page listing all of their published books with links to buy each one. Typically, they:
- Link to the book page in the top navigation. This makes it easy for visitors to find this page no matter where they arrive on the website.
- Display the book covers. This can help spark recognition later when a reader is browsing BookBub’s latest deals or a retailer’s search results page.
- Include a brief elevator pitch. Each book usually includes a quick synopsis or a blurb from a recognizable author.
- Include links to multiple retailers. This helps visitors easily find each book wherever they shop.
For example, Daniel Silva includes links to each retailer where the book is available on his books page:
. . .
2. The author’s newest or upcoming release
Many author websites have a prominent feature section on the homepage for promoting their most recent work. This makes it easy for fans to find the book with the latest buzz. Authors who have a book coming out shortly tend to feature this instead, and change the language from “coming soon” to “now available” once the launch date arrives.
In this section, many authors include blurbs instead of a simple synopsis to build excitement and hype. For example, Dan Brown includes blurbs for Inferno on his homepage:
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