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This is Day 17 of 31 Days to Start a Freelancing Business (or Make Yours a Better One). If you want to catch up, click here to read Day 1.
Yesterday, you wrote the first four of the seven essential pages of your freelancing website. Today, we’ll get to the last three.
5. Testimonials or Feedback
The testimonials or feedback page is a critical component of your site. Prospective clients take a lot of risk when hiring a service provider for the first time. By reading feedback from others your work, you’re reducing some of this risk for your prospects. You can read more about the importance of client testimonials here.
If you did the assigned task on Day 11, you should have a few testimonials for your site by now. Just put up whatever you have for now. On a later day, we’ll be working on getting more social proof of how good you are.
6. Work Samples
Your prospects will definitely want to see samples of your work. If you have work that’s been published online, put links to those pieces on this page.
You can also publish your work yourself, on your website. For example, if you’re a designer, you’ll want to put thumbnails for your best work on this page. Use thumbnails to minimize the loading time of your page. But make sure the thumbnails are linked to higher-resolution versions of the images.
If your samples are physical objects, such as an article published in a magazine or a brochure you designed, you can scan or take photographs of these objects. Very important: don’t publish copyrighted materials on your website! Instead, request your prospects to contact you if they want to see those pieces.
Like the traditional resume, the purpose of this page is to provide information about your work experience and formal training. But don’t make this page look just like your paper resume. Translate the information for the web. Summarize key areas and don’t go into the littlest details.
I’ve noticed that not all freelancers even have this page. I think this is a big mistake. Your resume page can highlight your strengths, particularly if you have a lot of formal training and experience in your field.
For example, my resume page emphasizes how heavily I invest in my continuing education, as well as my 20 years writing experience.
By the end of today, you should have the 7 essential pages on your freelancing website.
There are other pages you could add, but which I think are optional, such as:
- resources – products and training programs you recommend to your prospective clients (this is the only place where you should have affiliate links, in my opinion)
- squeeze page – to collect the email addresses of your prospective clients. Highly recommended, but not necessary if you’re just starting out.
- privacy – your policy about protecting your readers’ privacy. You SHOULD have this page if you collect information about your readers, such as if you have an opt-in form or squeeze page.
- freebies – a landing page for free stuff you’ve made for your site visitors, such as special reports, white papers, WordPress themes, website scripts, etc.
To Blog, Or Not to Blog?
Now we get to an important question: should you have a blog?
You have a WordPress site, which means you could blog very easily. You’ve got all the tools. But should you?
Blogging is an essential tool for any business to attract clients, including a freelancer’s business. So, yes, I think you should blog.
Here are just a few things you can accomplish with your blog:
- Highlight your expertise – especially if you’re a writer, a blog functions as an excellent sample of your work. But even if you’re a virtual assistant, web designer or other type of service provider, you can display your expertise through your blog posts.
- Attract a steady stream of traffic – by blogging, you’re publishing new content regularly. It’s content that will attract traffic to your site.
- Have a central hub for your social media efforts – a blog is central for participating in social media. It gives you a place and a reason to reach out to your social media contacts. They’ll want to get to know you better, and they will naturally check out your blog (rather than a static site), to do so.
That said, a blog can be a lot of work. So this is something you should definitely think about. If you decide not to blog (yet), don’t sweat it. You can start a blog anytime you want to. After all, you’re using WordPress on your site, right?
Are there other pages you think you ought to have on your site? Did I leave anything out? If so, please post a comment below.
photo credit: TheAlieness GiselaGiardino²³