Category Archives: Search Engine Optimization

5 Ways To Make Your Author Website More Searchable And Visible Online | Web Design Relief

5 Ways To Make Your Author Website More Searchable And Visible Online | Web Design Relief

Every writer should have an author website; it acts as your online “business card” and information hub. If a literary agent, editor, or reader wants to know more about you and your writing, they’re going to look for you on the Internet—so it’s important that an online search engine like Google quickly brings your author website to their fingertips! At Web Design Relief, our experts know the tips, hacks, and strategies that will make your author website easily searchable and visible online.

How To Make Your Author Website Searchable And Visible Online

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will help your author website show up at the top of search results lists. To start, pick 8-12 keywords that best describe your writing, your themes, and your author brand (don’t forget to include your name). Then, make sure those terms appear as often as possible on your site. Don’t overdo it or force keywords where they don’t make sense—you’ll end up with text that sounds stilted and poorly written. Simply make a point of using your keywords in blog posts, headers, your bio, even in the backend of your website. The terms don’t even have to appear on the page for Google to pick them up: Adding titles to your images can do wonders for your online visibility.

Marketing

One of the most reliable ways to direct traffic to your author website is to simply let people know you’d like them to visit! Choose an easy-to-remember URL and include  your website address in your correspondence signature and on promotional materials: bookmarks, posters, postcards, and giveaways. Mentioning your website in your author bio with your published writing is another great way to help readers find their way to your site.

Cross-promotion is also a powerful way to expand your audience. Talking about your writing as a guest on someone else’s blog or podcast exposes potential new readers to your content. And if they want to know more, invite them to visit your author website!

Social Media

If your author website is where readers go to learn more about you and your writing, your social media platforms are where readers go to engage with you in real time. Maintaining an active social media presence lets your followers develop a personal connection to you and your author brand. Your social media accounts can show up in Internet searches for your name, so they serve as another landing point for new readers.

In order to bring your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest followers to your author website, be sure to have a prominent link to your website on your social media platforms (and vice versa) so that followers can connect with just the click of a button.

More Publication Credits

It may seem obvious, but your writing is central to expanding your brand as a writer. What better way to get people interested than to get your writing in front of as many readers as possible? Literary journals and magazines are ideal for this purpose, since they have already spent time building reliable audiences. Each journal that publishes your work introduces you to another new audience, so making carefully targeted submissions to a wide variety of journals is an excellent way to increase interest in your writing and bring more visitors to your author website. And online journals offer the opportunity to link directly to your author website in your author bio.

If you need help researching the best markets for your writing and developing an effective submission strategy, Writer’s Relief can help!

Giveaways

Who doesn’t like free stuff? If you want to build traffic and help your author website rank higher in online searches, consider offering an incentive. Contests and giveaways are easy ways to generate clicks, and the prize or freebie doesn’t have to be expensive. A free copy of your e-book or a subscription to a journal that has published your work won’t break the bank, and they’re the kind of reward that readers can get excited about. You can even tie the contest to your mailing list to keep those new visitors coming back to your site again and again.

With the Internet now the go-to information source for most people, your author website serves as your online identity and reader resource. Use these tips to help your website move higher in search results so that you—and your writing—are more visible and easy to find!

 

Question: What strategies have you used to attract visitors to your website?

Ready To Launch! 7 Signs Your Website Is All Systems Go | Web Design Relief

Most writers understand the importance of having an author website to act as an online business card and an information hub. But at Web Design Relief, our experts know that before you press the button that launches your website, it’s important to make sure everything is all systems go! You don’t want to make your author website live, only to discover functional or navigational issues and typos that will make your visitors cringe—and bounce.

Start The Countdown! Questions To Ask Before You Launch Your Author Website

Have you proofread your site? Yes, proofreading is as vital to website-building as it is to poetry, prose, or books. Typos will make your website look amateurish. This is especially true if you’re an author! Make sure your Oxford commas are in order and your proper nouns are properly capitalized before launching. Learn how to become a master proofer here.

Do you have something to attract visitors? Your author website should showcase your writing and broaden your readership. Make certain that you have pages featuring excerpts of your book, blog posts, or links to your literary publications. You may also want to have a dedicated page where visitors can purchase your books, or you can include “Buy Now” buttons to third-party sellers to increase book sales.

Is social media integrated into your website? While it is unlikely that visitors would spend several hours a day on your author website, the opposite is true for social networking apps like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Have social media buttons prominently featured on your author website that link to your various social media platforms so visitors can follow you.

Pro Tip: Verify that your social media pages are ready for the public. This means that your social media accounts aren’t set to private and aren’t flooded with personal posts that don’t pertain to your writing. In fact, don’t link to your personal social media—create separate accounts for your author persona, including a Facebook author page!

Do website visitors have a way to contact you? Having a contact page is essential—literary agents or editors may want to get in touch with you! It also gives your fans and followers the opportunity to reach out to you through an easy-to-use form. A contact form is a safe way for you to connect with your audience while limiting spam and protecting your privacy. Which brings us to our next point…

Is your website safe? To protect yourself and your visitors, limit the personal information you share, especially your email address. This can attract unwanted spam from automated bots and leave your site vulnerable to hacking. Make sure you have effective Internet security in place by installing security plugins and captchas.

Did you optimize your website for mobile use? Almost all websites are built via desktop computers, and while it might look perfect on the big screen, your website may not translate well to mobile use. As more people view websites on their mobile devices, it’s important for your website to look good on smartphones and tablets. Be sure to check that your author website is legible and functional on mobile devices before you make your site live.

Does everything work? Perhaps the most important step before launching your website is to check that everything works! And we mean everything. Does your domain lead to your actual website? Are your hyperlinks live? Does your website work on multiple browsers? Do all of your buttons take visitors to the right location? Be your own guinea pig! Test your entire website prior to launch.

Once you’ve confirmed all systems are go, you can rest assured that your readers will enjoy visiting your author website and learning more about you and your writing. Ready to help your writing career take off? 3…2…1…launch!

 

Question: Which item on the checklist do you think is most important?

How Writers Can Be More Googleable (So People Can Find Your Writing Online) | Web Design Relief

Have you Googled your author name lately? What shows up in your search engine results? If the first page doesn’t include your website or other sites mentioning your books, you may want to reconsider whether your efforts to build an author brand are working. At Web Design Relief, we know that your being “Googleable” makes it easier for readers, editors, and literary agents to find you.

7 Tips To Help Writers Boost Their Google Results And Discoverability

Search Engine Optimization

Every writer needs an author website. Without it, you’re losing a valuable opportunity to create a hub for all your marketing and promotion activities. You’re also missing the chance to optimize that author website to boost your “Googleability.” Your website should be the first Google result that pops up when someone types in your name to find you.

Optimization can be both technical and content based. Techie back-end improvements include the effective use of header tags, metadata keywords, alt-tags on photos, and smart use of hyperlinking. Front-end, content-based improvements that you can do yourself include frequent updating with new content, providing easy connections to social media, and taking advantage of multimedia tools such as photos, videos, and slideshows.

Blogging

Blogging is a great way to keep content fresh and draw traffic to your website—a quality that search engines love. But setting a regular schedule to post is not the only way you can boost your rankings by blogging. You can also:

  • Guest blog on other writers’ sites
  • Promote your blog on your social media platforms
  • Do blog launch tours and interviews when you have a new book release
  • Follow and comment on other people’s blogs

Byline And Book Listings

Authors who quickly release a lot of books tend to have a strong presence in search engine results. It just makes sense that the more bylines you have, the more Googleable you become.

If there’s a big gap of time between releases of your books, you may want to consider doing some short-form publications to keep your name visible. These could include publications in magazines or newspapers or writing short stories or novellas for an indie-published anthology, etc.

Social Media

Social media is so important to Google results that several publishing houses have included a clause in their contracts compelling authors to engage with followers on one or more platforms. Active engagement provides search engines with lots of mentions to feed algorithms.

The bigger social media platforms are preferred by Google because of their massive reach. Consider engaging with your readers wherever they hang out most: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, YouTube, etc. YouTube is owned by Google, so if you’re comfortable with “vlogging,” YouTube will give your search engine results a big boost.

Deep engagement on a few social media platforms is far preferable to shallow engagement on many, but there are some sites where book authors should at least claim their profiles. These would include:

  • Goodreads
  • LibraryThing
  • BookBub
  • LinkedIn (particularly for nonfiction writers and journalists)

Google Account Optimization

You already have a Google account if you have signed up for Gmail, Google Drive, Google+, etc., but how long has it been since you checked your Google profile? Make sure to include a tagline and an introduction about your work in the personal information section. Integrate relevant keywords to help improve your Google results and rankings.

If you use Gmail, create an email address that includes your author name, rather than “bookwriter234” or something equally unspecific.

Writing Contests

Finalists and winners of writing contests are often publicized by the contest coordinators, adding another listing of your name to search engine algorithms.

Indie Writers Go Wide

If you’re a self-published indie writer in control of your own book distribution, consider “going wide” rather than being exclusive to a certain vendor. When your work is available on Amazon, Apple Books, Kobo, Google Play, Barnes & Noble, Ingram, OverDrive, Scribd, Tolino, Playster, Bibliotheca, and Baker & Taylor, your Googleability will rise.

If you want to build a brand and get your writing in front of readers, editors, and agents—being Googleable is mandatory. Discoverability depends on increasing your visibility in search engine rankings, and the results can make all the difference in your writing career.

We just typed your name in the search bar. What will we find?

 

Question: What methods do you use to increase your visibility in search engine results?

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