It’s important for a web design portfolio to be able to make a good first impression. You only have a few seconds to engage visitors and encourage them to stay on your site and look through your content.

web design portfolio website

Here are a few tips on how to make a portfolio website that encourages visitors to stay.

1. Do be selective and present only your best work

While it’s tempting to include all your past projects, it’s best to be more particular with quality rather than quantity when building a web design portfolio website. Including your top three or four works in your portfolio is definitely better than being too comprehensive. Select the best ones that define your style, or, if you have worked on different industries before, include at least one from every niche to give your visitors an idea of how diverse your experience is.

2. Don’t be too flashy with your web design portfolio

When it comes to choosing portfolio website templates, it’s best to keep it simple. Avoid flashy content especially if it doesn’t work well with your brand image. Too much flash can also slow your website down. A slow website isn’t good for user experience. Too many tricks and effects on the website also tends to take away focus from the actual star of the site - your content.

3. Do make the first encounter pleasant

We cannot stress it enough - first impressions count on a web design portfolio site. A quick and smart introduction right at the top of your website gives your visitor a good idea what you do and what you’re passionate about. Be straightforward and let your personality shine through. Avoid using tired and generic call outs and express yourself and your work in the best way you can.

4. Don’t make a static site

The best free portfolio websites are dynamic - they feature fresh content regularly to encourage users to return. Keep your website updated and don’t hesitate to remove projects that you feel are no longer a reflection of your talents. If you have a new project that trumps some of the items on your portfolio, refine your collection and add it in there.

5. Do add in your resume.

The best online portfolio sites contain a section on the designer’s resume. It would be good to let potential clients know your background, training and certifications to assure them that they are hiring a trained professional. Don’t forget to leave contact information such as an email address. Make the information accessible in multiple areas around your website.

6. Do make your portfolios site memorable

portfolio website templates

Create a positive user experience on your free portfolio websites. Think of your online portfolio like a museum of your best work. Create it for a user who has to go through several portfolios in a day. Make it easy for your visitor to navigate through your site and access the information he or she is looking for. Take care not to overcomplicate navigation for the sake of art.

7. Do look around for inspiration

Don’t hesitate to look through web design portfolio examples for inspiration. Check out Strikingly’s Discover page for some of the best sites built using the platform to give you ideas on how to make a portfolio website. Incorporate the best from these websites to create a portfolio that perfectly represents your brand and your work.

8. Don’t forget about the power of social media

Make your work seen across different platforms. Your website can be the central platform for all your content but do not forget the power of social media to effectively market your talent to a wider audience.