How to Create a Successful Author Website from Scratch

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Creating an author website has become an important part of publishing a book. An online presence is essential for marketing products, growing your audience base, and increasing your visibility to potential readers. In this article, we will discuss the essential elements to create an author website, from choosing a niche or topic to leveraging analytics and tracking tools. These topics will serve as guideline to help you create a website that will serve your publishing efforts well.

Choosing a Niche or Topic

When creating an author website, the first step is to decide on a niche or topic. The website should be focused in the same topic as your work and should be directed at your target audience. Think of the content of your website, the services and products that you want to offer, and how the website should look and feel. Consider refining your author's niche as part of this research exercise.

Domain Name Selection

Once you've decided on a niche or topic for your website, the next step is to select a domain name. Choose a domain name that is memorable and is in line with your author name. Consider an option that is aligned with your brand and can grow as you build out your portfolio. It is also helpful to check the availability on popular domains such as .com, .org, and .net.

Web Hosting Options

For the hosting of your website, there are a number of options to choose from. Most author websites are hosted with popular providers such as GoDaddy, NameCheap, and Bluehost. GoDaddy and NameCheap offer shared hosting at relatively cheap prices. Bluehost provides a variety of hosting services, such as shared hosting, virtual private server, cloud hosting, and WordPress hosting.

Website Building Platforms

Once you've secured a domain and hosting account, the next step is to decide on a website building platform. Popular platform choices include WordPress, Wix, and Squarespace. WordPress is an open-source platform and allows you flexibility in design and layout. Wix and Squarespace offer drag-and-drop web design platforms with built-in features and templates.

Website Design and Layout

The design and layout of your website is another important factor. Consider what kind of information or content your website visitors want to access. Focus on using fonts, colors, and shapes that resonate with your branding and evoke the desired emotion. Keep the navigation intuitive and pleasant on the eyes.

Content Creation and Writing

Content creation and writing is another essential component of creating an author website. Content is the foundation of your website and will make or break the user experience. It's important to develop compelling and informative content that is interesting and useful to your readers. Focus on creating content that will engage and draw readers to your website.

Basic HTML and CSS

In addition to content, it's important to have basic knowledge of HTML and CSS. HTML provides the necessary structure and framework for your website. CSS will allow you to apply styling to elements in your website, such as fonts, colors, shapes, etc. Knowing and understanding basic HTML and CSS will help you create a website that is visually appealing and easy to navigate.

Image and Multimedia Integration

Integrating images and multimedia elements into your website can provide a great way to engage users and provide additional context. Consider using images from stock photos, infographics, and videos. Choose images that are in line with your branding and that convey the desired emotion or message.

User Experience (UX) and Navigation

Providing a great user experience is essential for a website. The navigation should be intuitive, with clear labels and easy-to-find features. Consider leveraging user experience research to make sure that your user interface is easy to use and navigate.

SEO Fundamentals

When creating an author website, it's important to have a basic understanding of SEO fundamentals. SEO is an essential component of optimizing your website for search engines. Focus on developing content that is SEO optimized and use tactics such as keyword research to target specific keywords.

Mobile Responsiveness

As more people are using mobile devices to access the internet, it's important to make sure that your website is mobile responsive. Mobile responsiveness ensures that your website looks and feels great on any device, from laptops to mobile phones.

Social Media Integration

Integrating social media is an effective way to spread the word about your website and your work. Consider leveraging popular networks such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to increase your reach and build relationships with potential readers.

Website Security

Security is another important factor to consider when creating an author website. Make sure that your website is secure and that the user data is safe. Leverage best practices, such as using strong passwords, restricting access, and monitoring for malicious activity.

Analytics and Tracking Tools

Leveraging analytics and tracking tools will give you insights into the user behavior on your website. These tools can help you identify areas for improvement and help you optimize your website for the best user experience. Consider Google Analytics and Kissmetrics as two popular options.


Creating an author website can be an intimidating task, but with the right knowledge and understanding of the essential elements, you can create a website that will serve your publishing efforts and engage readers. By following the topics outlined in this article, you can create a website that will be successful and help you reach your publishing goals.