When developing a website to promote your book, you may think you have two primary choices: to launch a site for the book (booktitle.com) or a site for you as the author (authorname.com). But there is also a third option: Develop a content-themed site.
If your goal is to brand yourself as an authority in your field, professional speaker and media interview source, it makes sense to focus efforts on developing your personal brand, with your book being an extension of that brand. Having an author site creates a level of professionalism that lends itself to building your career as an author. (By the way, if your author name is taken, try AuthorAnnieSmith.com or AnnieSmithAuthor.com.)
A book site can have its advantages, but if you plan to write more books in the future, then you’ll be faced with managing multiple sites—and trying to drive traffic to those sites. This is why creating a content-themed site makes sense because it can help you build your author career in the long run.
A content-themed site should focus on subject matter from your book or have a slightly broader focus. For example, if your book is about training dogs, you might create a site about dog care. Fill it with news and related content on subjects related to dog training, dog wellness, adopting a dog, etc. If your book is a memoir about your experience dealing with diabetes, you might create a site focused on tips for managing diabetes, eating low carb, living a healthy lifestyle, etc.
The idea here is to build a platform around your specific area of expertise, and go beyond the standard 5-page website. If you want to drive traffic to your site, you’ll need a plan to add content on a regular basis. Content can include blog posts, podcast recordings, videos, interviews with peers, product recommendations, etc. Statistically, the more content you add to your site, the more traffic it will receive, so this should be a top priority for all authors.
Driving traffic and engaging your audience with relevant content is a fantastic way to attract book buyers. You’ll know your site visitors are interested in your topic, and once you dazzle them with the information you’ve shared, they will be even more interested in purchasing your book.
This is why I believe a content-themed site is often the best choice for authors—because it allows you to build a brand around your book(s) along with a strategy to generate website visitors.
Don’t panic, but it may make sense to ALSO have an author site where you can attract media interviews and speaking engagements. Many nonfiction authors have both a content site and author site because both have their own unique value.
One more tip: When choosing the domain name for your website, it’s best to stick with the standard “.com” extensions. While new extensions are being introduced every day, most people are in the habit of typing in “.com” and if you have a competitor with that site extension, you could lose site visitors to them.
Also, avoid putting dashes, numbers or erroneous words in your domain name. It may be harder to find shorter domain names these days, but it’s worth the effort to try and find a descriptive name that isn’t too long and is also memorable. You can try many word combinations until you find something that works just right for you. GoDaddy offers affordable domain registration and you can search for options here.
If you like this blog post, you’ll love our Ultimate Author Marketing Course! Learn more about our courses for authors here.