Your website is the first impression that clients will get of you as a freelancer. Many newcomers to the freelance world think it is enough just use a free website builder, put up some content and some free images, and call it good. If you’re a dedicated freelancer who plans on making a living solely off your own income, this is the worst thing you could possibly do.
Customers find you in searches and on social media, and they follow those links to your website. If your website looks like it was thrown together in an hour with minimal effort, guess what? That’s how they think you’ll approach their assignments. If that’s the case, there’s no way you’re going to get hired.
Your domain is also where you show your value. Unless you are just concentrated on getting every job and being the cheapest option around, you need to show why you are a better investment then every other freelancer out there. Here are some keys to finding better freelance clients using your website.
Show Off Your Brand
Who are you? Why do you do what you do? What sets you apart from anyone else who does the same thing? These are the things that make up your brand. Of course, these need to be communicated in a way that the customer can visually see as well as read about.
- Your Logo: You should have a logo that is easily recognizable. Your logo should also say something about who you are as a freelancer and relate somehow to what you do. If you are not a professional, hire someone to create a logo for you. It will be much better than anything you can do online for free.
- Website Colors: Choose the colors you use as part of your branding carefully, and understand the psychology of colors and how they should be combined to move the user.
- A Clear Tagline: Why do you do what you do? Use that ‘why’ to create a great tagline that immediately impacts your future clients. Keep it simple, direct, and confident.
Your branding lets a customer know who you are, what you do, and how you do it differently. They need to see the value in you and developing your brand is key to differentiate yourself in a clustered job market.
Show Off Your Professionalism
You might be a really funny person but a site filled with memes and bathroom jokes probably won’t win you any clients. That is not to say that humor does not have a place. A funny blog post can be just the thing to inspire a customer to take action.
However, they also must know that the person they are dealing with knows what they are doing and act in a professional manner. Talk about any certifications you might have and use your site pages, your blog, and even your landing pages to show that you know the field you are in. It’s critical that clients know you have fun but take your work seriously.
This means that your skills must be fully on display. If you are a writer, your writing should be spot on. If you’re a graphic designer? Your graphics and web design should be your best work. If you are not willing to invest in the best for your own site, why would your customers invest in you?
Provide Great Advice
Part of building a great website is showing off your expertise in a simple, concise way. This doesn’t mean you should be preaching at clients. Instead, you should be offering real, practical advice, even if it does not lead to someone buying your product or using your service.
This is Essential for SEO as Well
No matter what kind of business you have, if you conduct most of your business online, SEO is essential. We know that Google looks for a few things on every website and every web page when it ranks great results. The reason they do is that these same things appeal to the user as well. Your site is all about user experience, not rankings. Each piece of content you include should have three elements that are featured prominently on every single page you maintain:
- Expertise: You need to be an expert at what you do, and your content needs to reveal that experience and expertise as much as your bio does.
- Authority: How many people cite you as a source? Do you cite established sources and other experts in your own work? Clients want to see that you’re well-regarded in your niche. The links you use in your content covers that from an SEO perspective. Client testimonials do the same thing from a networking standpoint.
- Trustworthiness: Who wrote the content on your site? Can you be trusted with the money a client is going to invest in your work? Your site and content must show that you are worth their trust.
This is called the E.A.T. principle, and not only will it help you get more and better clients, but it will also help Google trust you more. This will increase your rankings in search engine results, and make it easier for clients to find you.
Give Something Away
Want better clients? Give them something for free. Whether that is a phone consultation, an eBook, a content or graphics guide, or whatever you have to offer, you show them a couple of things by doing this.
- You are successful enough you that don’t have to charge for every little thing.
- You are confident your free advice will lead them to use your services.
- You care about them and their issues beyond how rapidly they pay for an invoice.
- You are engaged in your industry.
Giving something away also triggers the principle of reciprocity. The user is more likely to buy from you if you have given them something first.
Your website can be much more than just a placeholder. It can be the ultimate resource that leads to better client acquisition and better work overall. Use it wisely, and the results will be amazing.