After spending so many years sharpening your skills, honing your craft and being one of the best in your industry, it’s time to let clients know just how great you are. The reality is that so many talented professionals are unable to market themselves effectively and are often left to settle with whatever work they can get. Don’t sell yourself short. A portfolio website can keep your talent from falling through the cracks and get you clients that will help you grow your career even more.
Great portfolio websites serve as your best foot forward when it comes to presenting your skills and talents to potential clients. When done right, they can represent your personal brand on the web and help you bring your career to greater heights. You do need a bit of careful planning for this to work but thanks to the advent of website builders and portfolio templates, most of the technical aspect of website development is left to the hands of professionals while you work on creating winning content.
With more than 3 million users all over the world, Strikingly has helped professionals and creatives jumpstart their careers with unique portfolio websites. We understand how important a good solid foundation is to creating a strong web presence and that is why we have created a robust website builder to give you that great push forward. With that being said, here are a few simple guidelines to think about when designing the best portfolio websites.
1. Have a clear branding to attract interest
Branding is not just for big companies and agencies that employ a team of creatives. You can have your own personal brand even as a freelancer. Implementing your own branding makes you look more put together and professional in the eyes of potential clients. Create a custom logo and use it on your web design portfolio. Use a color scheme that best describes your personality and the image you want to convey. If you have established online profiles on social media, you might want to use the same branding guidelines for a more cohesive web presence.
2. Come up with a magnetic headline to reel users in
Your headline should be able to get users to stick around and read through your portfolio website. Whether you’re creating a Wix portfolio or a Wordpress portfolio, your efforts will be for naught if you don’t keep visitors engaged. The key is to lead with a powerful headline. Your header banner is one of the first things users see as soon as they land on your site. With the average user spending 7-10 seconds on a web page before moving on, you want to grab his attention within the first few seconds. Give him a good overview of who you are and why you are worth his time.
3. Make your portfolio website easy to navigate
Users should be able to find the information they came for in a few seconds. It might sound like common sense to make your site easily navigable but many people fall prey to the idea of adding lots of fancy features to amaze and impress potential clients.
Start with the right website template that suits your content. Strikingly has an expansive collection of portfolio templates for you to choose from. Preview a few of the ones you find interesting to visualize how your site will look like in them. Once you’re happy with your choice, you can proceed to planning content flow, streamlining your menu items and making sure that certain sections such as your portfolio gallery and contact section are easily accessible.
4. Quality rather than quantity is important
Your portfolio website should showcase your best, most impressive work that represents the scope of your talent. Keep lower level work samples off your portfolio. It will not be to your advantage to put up every single project you have worked on so far. Clients and employers do not have the time to go through every portfolio entry. At best, they will probably look at the first three projects you have completed and gauge your suitability from there.
5. Clearly state what type of work you do
Don’t leave clients wondering what type of work you can do. Clearly state it in your portfolio. If you’re a graphic artist, let people know what type of services you provide - i.e. print design, logo design, websites, etc. When a visitor lands on your website, he should be able to see what value you offer rather than have to ask you directly or spend the next few seconds trying to locate information about it.