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The Best Website Platforms for Creating an Author Website



What Website platforms are the best for creating an author website?


When it comes to building an author website, choosing the right platform for you is going to save you huge amounts of headaches in the future. Whether you're a self-published author, a professional writer, or just starting out, the best author websites need to be visually appealing, easy to navigate, and optimised for SEO. Here are some top platforms that offer a range of features to help you create the perfect author site.


 

Before we dive in, here are some useful tips and important considerations when creating your own author website:


  1. Learning Curve: Regardless of the platform you choose, expect a learning curve to get your website looking and functioning the way you want. Even with templates (which I highly recommend), you'll need to make edits, remove unnecessary elements, and add your content. This can require some adjustments on your part to ensure everything fits well and looks polished.


  1. User Experience: Readers don’t care where you build your website; they care about its appearance, ease of navigation, and the ability to find what they’re looking for. Prioritise a clean, user-friendly design that enhances the visitor experience.


  1. Integrations and Capabilities: The ability to integrate blogs, e-commerce, and newsletters is crucial. Most website builders offer these features, but choosing a platform that combines all these capabilities under one roof is ideal. I’ll explain the benefits of this approach later on.

  2. Avoid Wordpress: I will explain this further down but if you’re looking for convenience and easy to access sites then WordPress won’t be your friend here. Keep in mind you have to market your book, continue to write and keep up with your socials so you want a platform that is easy to use and manage. I’ll explain this further on.

  3. Responsive websites: I cannot stress the importance of having a responsive website. Your site being responsive means that it is viewable on any device. Using templates that are responsive is important so you don’t have to worry too much about building your websites for tablet, mobile and bigger screens. Test your site on all of your devices at home, make sure content is in the viewport and readable.




Let’s jump into your options - In no particular order


WordPress


I started off this list with Wordpress as I think it’s the one you should avoid. I recommend avoiding it unless you are tech-savvy and can handle the increased maintenance and steeper learning curve required for setup and management. WordPress demands a thorough understanding of plugins, regular updates, and a more complex interface. Without proper management, your site may malfunction or become outdated.


Many authors I've worked with who started with WordPress found even simple tasks challenging and struggled with outdated plugins, rendering parts of their websites non-functional. While WordPress is a powerful platform, it's crucial to be aware of these potential issues if you're managing the site yourself.


Benefits:


Highly customisable

Extensive library of themes and plugins

Strong SEO capabilities


Drawbacks:


Steeper learning curve

Requires more maintenance


 

Wix


Wix offers an intuitive drag-and-drop interface, making it an excellent choice for authors looking to create a simple author website. With a variety of templates specifically designed for authors, you can easily build a visually appealing site without any coding knowledge. Personally, you cannot go wrong with Wix, they offer regular deals on their pricing plans and the templates are great to get you going with your own Website.


Benefits:


User-friendly interface

Professional responsive templates

Built-in SEO tools

Integrated blogging and e-commerce features

Robust customer support


Drawbacks:


Limited advanced features without third-party apps

Basic plan has limited storage

Slightly higher cost


 

Squarespace


Squarespace is renowned for its beautiful and modern templates, making it ideal for creating an author website that stands out. It’s an excellent choice for authors who want a clean, visually appealing site that’s easy to maintain.


Benefits:


Stunning, responsive templates

Integrated blogging and e-commerce features

Robust customer support


Drawbacks:


Less customisation compared options

Slightly higher cost


 

Conclusion


I can’t emphasise enough how crucial it is to set everything up correctly from the start. During my time working in design studios, I saw businesses that half-heartedly approached their branding and websites at the beginning. When they grew, they realised their existing setup was inadequate and had to invest in a professional agency for the next level of growth. Your books are your business, and I recommend investing in a solid author brand and website design from the outset. Doing it right ensures your website and brand will grow with you, avoiding any major issues down the line.


If you can’t invest heavily right now, I suggest learning how to properly customise templates on either Squarespace or Wix. Personally, as a Wix Partner, I now exclusively build websites using Wix Studio. It’s a fantastic website builder, but it allows me to manage everything for my clients under one roof. This is great for both my management and for authors, who can rest assured their websites are in safe hands.


Ensure your website can integrate all necessary features from the beginning, such as blogs, newsletters, and e-commerce capabilities. Even if you don’t need e-commerce right away, it’s important to have the option available on your site.


 

Extra Tips for Author Website Ideas and Services


When designing your author website make sure these are added to get the best for you and your readers. These might not be there from the start but make sure you’re set up to add them in the future.


Email List Integration: Build your reader community by offering a sign-up form for your newsletter.


Events Page: Keep your readers informed about book signings, readings, and other events.


E-commerce Integration: Sell signed copies of your books directly from your website.


Blog Section: Share updates, writing tips, and personal insights to connect with your readers.


Social Media Links: Increase your online presence by linking to your social media profiles.


Ready to build your author website? Explore these platforms and find the one that suits your style and needs best.


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