Even the best writers sometimes get bad information. And when it comes to author websites, there’s a lot of misconceptions and myths about author websites going around. If you have a promotional website or are thinking of starting one, be sure you aren’t carrying around any of these common (but largely wrong) ideas.
11 Author Website Myths Busted
1. Only famous writers have websites. I don’t have an awesome writing bio (or my book’s not done yet), so I have no use for a website. This is easily the biggest misconception we at Web Design Relief encounter. It’s so big that we wrote a whole article about it. If you’re under the impression that being in the early stages of your career means you can’t benefit from a website, stop everything and read this right now: Do Pre-Published Authors Need A Website?
2. Having a website isn’t really going to do anything for me. Having a website puts you in a position to take advantage of opportunities that you might not be able to see at this moment (opportunities that someone who has a website can make use of). Read more: What An Author Website Can Do For You
3. Having a website is going to make me rich and popular. While some people are totally pessimistic about their Web potential, others are hyper-optimistic. A website alone probably won’t make a writer’s career. Your website is just one component of your entire author platform. And that, in total, can have a big effect on your reputation as a writer or your sales.
4. People will visit my website just because it exists. Oops! Not really. People will visit your website if you a) tell them it exists and b) give them a reason to visit it. That tends to be where social media comes in.
5. I don’t want to be on social media, so what’s the point of a website? There are plenty of authors out there who don’t tweet, poke, post, stumble, dig, or Like. But their website functions as the central hub for fans of their exceptionally strong writing (which translates into steady sales and readers who come back again and again). Also, see point #1 above.
6. My old website is good enough. Most writers find they have to update their site at least every couple (or few) years to keep it from looking stale, tired, and out of touch. If your writing speaks to contemporary readers, your site should too.
7. I can get a fantastic website for free. Well, no. You can probably get a website for free. But it probably won’t be fantastic. It will be a cookie-cutter site, possibly covered in ads. Be wary of free offers (especially if you won’t get to control your content or your URL).
8. Making an awesome website is going to be expensive. Okay, this one is true…unless you know where to look. The Web Design Relief team has done our research; we offer the BEST VALUE that balances personal expression and customizations with money-saving design.
9. I have to be a techie to maintain a website. If the ideas of SEO, hosting, and coding seem a little mysterious, you’re not alone. That’s why WordPress is so popular; non-techie types can have full control over their own websites without learning to write code. Web Design Relief sites are WordPress sites, and clients have full control of their content.
10. I don’t have time to maintain a website. Your site is what you make of it. You can spend as much or as little time on it as you feel is appropriate. That’s really the bottom line. And there are tools available to save you time, like social media programs you can use to update multiple social media sites at one time.
11. If I have a website, my whole life will be out there on the Web, and I’m a private person. Your website doesn’t have to feel like an invasion of privacy; you have complete control over what you choose to share. And there are specific steps you can take to stay safe on the Web.
QUESTION: What have we missed? What do you think writers are getting “wrong” about author websites?