You’ve meticulously designed your author website to exact specifications, and it has all the features needed to effectively promote your author brand. Now it’s time to launch your author website and share it with the world! To ensure your website launch has the most impact and gets results, it’s important to put certain key elements into place beforehand. Let’s take a look at a step-by-step guide to launching a new author website.
A Step-By-Step Guide To Launching A New Author Website
Step 1: Curate A Mailing List
If you have an existing mailing list (accumulated from an old version of your website or other encounters with interested fans), it’s time to put it to use! Prepare an email to everyone on your list announcing your new website’s launch and all the great features and freebies your visitors can find there. If you have a primary focus (such as selling a new book, etc.), make that the call to action. If visitors have a defined purpose, they will be more likely to spend time on your website.
If you don’t have a mailing list yet, start with friends, family, and colleagues and ask them to share your new website announcement with their friends, family, and colleagues. Don’t take for granted the connections you already have—you never know who will potentially become a fan.
Step 2: Organize Your Social Media Profiles
Social media is a spectacular tool for reaching a specific audience. If you don’t already have a Facebook Page or Twitter profile, it’s time to create one! You can synchronize your mailing announcement with corresponding announcements on social media to get even more people excited about your author website’s launch. Sharing the same message across your author platform will help you appear professional and reduce the risk of anyone getting the wrong information.
Step 3: Create An Incentive
Announcing the link to your new author website may get folks to stop by and take a look, but without an incentive, visitors may jump off after a few minutes or bookmark your site for a later visit. Give people a reason to stay! Maybe new visitors can receive an exclusive excerpt of your latest work-in-progress, or they can be directed to purchase your latest book at a limited-time discount. Offer an incentive that’s easy for visitors to accept as soon as they arrive on your site, and make sure it’s clearly labeled on your homepage.
Step 4: Double-Check Your Author Website One Final Time Before Launch
This is critical to your new site’s success. Be sure to browse your author website to confirm that all of the links and features are functioning properly, and that there are no embarrassing typos in your Web copy. Don’t disappoint people by sending them to a website that doesn’t work correctly! If possible, ask a few friends to test your site first and report any errors.
Pro Tip: Check with your Web hosting provider to make sure you have enough bandwidth to support a large surge in Web traffic. You don’t want to launch your new website, only to have it crash due to too many visitors.
Step 5: Make Your Site Live And Send Your Announcements
Once you’ve double-checked your site and prepared your email blast and social media posts, it’s time to send your announcement to the world! Be sure to make yourself available in the hours following your announcement. Visitors may post immediate comments on social media. Responding to these in real time will go a long way toward turning visitors into fans.
Don’t Forget To Thank Your Visitors!
Your author website and the success of your author brand would be nothing without your visitors and fans, so don’t forget to send a big “Thank You!” their way. A day or two after your site’s launch, post a thank you—both on social media and via email—to everyone who showed their support by visiting your site. They’ll be glad to see how appreciative you are and be more likely to return and share your site with their friends.
QUESTION: What steps did you take when launching your author website? Did you do anything differently than we suggest? Let us know in the comments!