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Optimizing Your Website to Attract More Readers (Part 1)

Updated: Apr 25



When I was getting started building websites for authors, I struggled with knowing how to optimize them to attract more readers. A lot of conflicting information online left me feeling overwhelmed and confused. But that changed when I discovered the approach of marketing guru Harry Dry. In this newsletter, I'll break down Harry's approach and show you how to apply it to author websites.

 

An optimized website can help you build your brand and establish credibility as an author.

 

Unfortunately, many people don't optimize their websites to attract more readers because they don't know how to do it effectively. This lack of knowledge can be a significant barrier for authors who want to improve their online presence.

 

Barriers to Website Optimization

Other reasons include:

 

  • Lack of Time: Authors are often busy with writing and promoting their books, leaving little time for website optimization.

  • Complexity: Website optimization can seem daunting, especially for those who are not tech-savvy.

  • Cost: Hiring a professional to optimize a website can be expensive, making it a less attractive option for some authors.

  • Lack of Awareness: Some authors may not realize the importance of website optimization or how it can benefit their writing career.

 

Despite these challenges, there is hope! In the following sections, I will provide practical tips and strategies for optimizing your children's book author website to attract more readers, even if you have limited time, budget, or technical expertise.

 

Here’s how:

 

Before we continue, it's important to understand that there are two types of author websites: one that focuses on a book or book series, and another that focuses on the author.

 

The homepage is divided into two parts: what you see first (above the fold) and what you see after scrolling down (below the fold).

 

Let’s get started with above the fold which should clearly communicate exactly what you do. It’s broken down into:

 

  1. Title: Showcase your value proposition. What makes you and your books special?

  2. Subtitle: Expand on your headline and explain how you deliver that value to readers.

  3. Visual: Engage visitors with an eye-catching image or video related to your books or characters.

  4. Social Proof: Build trust by including testimonials, awards, or media mentions (if applicable).

  5. Call to Action (CTA): Tell visitors what you want them to do next, whether it's subscribing to your newsletter, buying a book, or contacting you.

 

Here's an image to illustrate what I'm talking about.



Title

There are many ways to write a title. I’ll focus on three:

 

Author Focus: Introduce yourself and your role as a children's book author.


Character Focus: Highlight your book's character(s) and their adventures, sparking reader interest.


Niche Expertise: Establish your credentials or niche expertise within children's literature.


Subtitle

Your subtitle should take the concept introduced in your title and explain how it benefits readers. Frame your value proposition around what children and parents are looking for in a children's book author.

 

Consider, for instance, the following website: Its value proposition is evident and centers around the readers' needs, specifically targeting parents or educators who seek to foster happiness, confidence, and fulfillment in their children.


In this example, the author introduces himself and highlights the value that his website brings to its readers.



Visual

Use a high-quality image or video that showcases your brand. Options include:

 

Book Covers: A compelling cover image can be very effective. This can either be an upcoming release or an already published title.



Engaging Character Art: If your characters are a key selling point, highlight them with dynamic visuals.



Social Proof

Showcase elements that demonstrate your expertise and achievements. This could include:

  • Reader Testimonials: Positive feedback from satisfied readers is powerful.

  • Awards and Recognition: Highlight any awards or recognition your books have received.

  • Media Mentions: If your work has been featured in publications or media outlets, showcase it here.


Call to Action (CTA)

Clearly tell visitors what action you want them to take next. Make the CTA button prominent and easy to understand.

Here are some examples:

  • "Download a Free Chapter!"

  • "Sign Up for My Newsletter!"

  • "Learn More About My Books!"

That’s all for today. Next week we’ll look at the essential elements that should be placed below the fold on your website. See you next week.


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