As a writer, one of the most important things you’ll do to grow your career (and income) is set up a freelance writer website/portfolio.
But you have to do it right.
Some little bullshit one-page portfolio simply ain’t gonna cut it if you want to land high-paying clients and build a sustainably profitable business.
You need a REAL BUSINESS WEBSITE for your freelance writing business.
Because, that, my friend, is what you’re starting – a real business.
Now, if you don’t have a site yet and want a step-by-step tech tutorial on how to set up your website, click here and check out my tutorial blog post.
(It’s one of my most popular posts and literally walks you through each step of setting up your site. You can do it in less than a day, even if you’re not tech-savvy!)
Once you’ve started your site, you need to create a marketing plan and optimize your website so that it converts.
Exactly how powerful is creating/optimizing your writer website the right way?
- I personally used my site to scale my writing biz to $5k/mo in 4 months.
- One of my students is a real estate writer, and she landed a $1,200 client as a DIRECT result of setting up and optimizing her website following the steps I teach!
- Another one of my students specializes in email newsletter writing, and she let me know that optimizing her website the way I teach landed her a new client – she didn’t even need a phone call to close the deal!
In other words:
This is serious stuff.
Your website can literally mean the difference between having ZERO clients and having clients banging down your door (errr…. email inbox) because they’re dying to hire you.
Here’s the problem, though.
A lot of writers mess up their site by either:
- MISTAKE 1: Being unprofessional / failing to come across as a REAL business owner. Do you think clients will respect you as a business owner if you don’t even spend a few bucks on a custom domain? (AHEM – you can get a free domain if you use my affiliate link. Just sayin’. I do get a commission when you use my link, but it costs you nothing extra to use. And I ONLY recommend Bluehost because I personally use and enjoy them!) Or if you can’t even be bothered to create an actual business website and just stick with Upwork instead? NOPE. This is just one of many ways you can lose the respect of potential clients.
Not willing to invest time or money in yourself? Think you’ll get away with a shitty, unprofessional website?
Well, that, my friend, is kind of like showing up to a first date looking like you just rolled out of bed…
A HUGE turn-off that makes you look like you really don’t have any fucks to give.
And it’s going to cost you that hot date. Just like your “no fucks given” website will cost you clients.
- MISTAKE 2: Having no marketing strategy guiding their site optimization. You can spend 4,234,552 hours obsessing over dumb shit like moving your logo one pixel to the left, and guess what? You won’t land any clients.
Not saying good design is pointless.
Just saying that what’s actually important when you’re starting out is the stuff that’ll make your website SELL:
Optimizing it for your niche. Building trust on every page of your site. Etc.
…So, these are two big mistakes.
Now, what does a good freelance writer website that lands clients ACTUALLY LOOK LIKE?
Keep reading, because I’ve gathered 7 of my favorites so you can get some inspiration.
(By the way, this isn’t just some bullshit round-up I threw together. I’ve known about each of these people for a while, and I genuinely think these are some of the best writer websites I’ve ever seen.)
Note: Any Bluehost links, including the one above, are my affiliate links, meaning I receive a commission. It just saves you money and costs you nothing extra to use! I ONLY recommend Bluehost because I personally use and enjoy them for hosting/many domains!
You don’t have to know what you’re going to call your site or anything yet! Just click here, and you can lock in your discount. 🙂
7 of the Best Freelance Writer Website/Portfolio Examples to Inspire Your Client-winning Website
If you’re a long-time reader, you know that I will PREACH optimizing your site for your niche ALL. DAMN. DAY.
And Rachel’s site is a perfect example of how to do that.
The SECOND you land on her site, you know exactly WHAT she does and WHO she helps.
Even better – her website headline speaks directly to the benefit her target client is seeking from her:
More leads and sales.
Plus, her entire website makes it crystal fucking clear that she is a B2B writer. Like, you really can’t miss it.
…Which is exactly what you want to happen when you optimize your website for your freelance writing niche!
Another thing I love about Rachel’s website? She includes social proof AND her picture on her homepage, which instantly helps build trust with her potential clients.
One unique thing about Rachel’s website is that she has prioritized the SHIT out of list-building.
She’s got lots of opt-in forms (like the one above!) to help her build a list of her target clients.
Overall, a super smart and well-designed website!
Okay. I’m just going to say it. I have a massive crush on Hillary’s branding.
…I mean, just LOOK how goddamn beautiful this site is, y’all:
I love that Hillary shows a lot of personality in her pictures.
You get a sense of who she is right away, which really makes her site memorable, especially compared to the shitloads of drab freelance writing portfolio websites out there.
As far as her home page, she clearly states who she helps – right at the top.
She also uses social proof in the form of company logos + client testimonials:
If you have similar social proof, you definitely want to slap that up on your home page (and elsewhere on your site) like Hillary has done… Gotta build that trust, baby!
Something uniquely awesome about her website is her “Praise” page and the way it’s formatted.
You can see that she’s included pictures of the clients she’s worked with and loads of testimonials from big names in her industry, which is great because relevance is key when it comes to testimonials!
Here’s another writer who I have a total brand crush on… Like, I’m pretty sure the pictures on her site are higher quality than my actual wedding pictures.
Something else I LOVE about Kira’s site?
The way she’s laid out her services section.
She sticks to a chef theme on this page, and you can see that she’s clearly explained her service offerings, with a call to action button for each of them:’
Plus, the way she’s laid out her social proof on her website is super eye-catching.
Overall, it’s a gorgeous site created by someone who clearly knows her shit when it comes to copywriting and marketing.
Joel runs a niche writing business called Case Study Buddy where clients can get – you guessed it – amazing case studies.
Just like the other examples in this blog post, the site is clearly niched down.
He markets his team as “case study specialists,” which makes him a clear fit for companies looking to pay top dollar for amazing, results-driven case studies.
You can also see that he’s included plenty of social proof on the home page to build trust with potential clients.
If you’re looking to scale your freelance writing business using an agency model, offering a niche service like Case Study Buddy is definitely the way to go!
Sarah’s a Killer Cold Emailing student and one of my FAVORITE freelance writing success stories!
One look at her website, and you’ll see why:
She’s chosen a solid niche, which is super clear on her website, and the entire site is set up to sell to clients in the health industry.
Just take a look at all the clients she’s worked with!
This social proof goes a long way in building trust with potential clients, and she’s also got several testimonials to take the trust-building even further.
Something unique about Sarah’s site is that she has “Book a 15-minute consult” right at the top of her home page!
I love a bold call to action, and she’s definitely done that.
Be like Sarah, and make sure you’re including bold CTAs on your site to get more inquiries from potential clients!
Before we get into Laura’s website, I’ve gotta say… you NEED to follow her on Instagram.
She’s always dishing out amazing writing and business advice, and her branding is on point!
Laura’s business is called Talking Shrimp, and you can see that she’s clearly niched down on her home page.
She specializes in TV writing and writing for entrepreneurs. Plain and simple!
Aaaand she’s got social proof on her home page in the form of company logos and a testimonial from Marie Forleo.
This is the PERFECT testimonial for her niche – writing for entrepreneurs – because every entrepreneur (unless they’ve been living under a damn rock) knows about Marie.
Relevance is key when it comes to social proof, and Laura has nailed that!
Something else I really like about her website is her Work With Me page.
It’s extremely comprehensive and answers pretty much every question a client would ask.
Plus, she’s got her pricing clearly listed to make sure she’s only getting contacted by her ideal clients (and send any lowballing, asshole clients running for UpWork).
Sarah is another one of my Killer Cold Emailing student success stories, and her website is amazing.
The second you land on it, you can see that she specializes in email copy.
Her home page also includes loads of social proof, which helps her build trust even more. And her copy shows that she’s super attuned to the needs of her target clients.
…I mean, I would definitely hire her if I needed someone to write emails for me, wouldn’t you?!
Something unique about Sarah’s website is how she showcases her social proof at the bottom of her home page.
She has a section there that shows she’s completed courses related to her writing niche.
Not only does that further establish her expertise – it also shows that she’s a serious business owner who has invested time and money into learning her craft.
PSST! Want to learn more about the exact website optimization process I teach that converts website visitors to clients?
Now that you’ve seen some examples of inspiring freelance writer websites… here are 3 ways to make YOUR Freelance Writer Website / Portfolio SELL.
1. Make your niche clear.
Did you notice that EVERY writer in this blog post made their niche clear on their home page?
That’s not a coincidence.
It’s because these folks understand marketing.
The second a potential client lands on your site, they should be able to quickly tell:
- What you do (type of writing and industry)
- Who you help (your target clients)
- The results you can help create (because high-paying clients are paying for results, not “words” or “hours”)
If your website isn’t doing that right now, it’s time to niche down and make some changes.
Need help niching down?
2. Build trust, especially on your home page.
You may have also noticed that EVERY writer in this blog post has loads of social proof on their site.
This isn’t just about testimonials. It can also be sharing where you’ve been published, big-name companies you’ve worked with, etc.
Now, you may be asking yourself:
“Um, what the heck am I supposed to do if I haven’t worked with any clients yet!? Seems like it’s impossible to build trust without having already worked with clients. UGH.”
Here’s the thing:
When you’re starting out as a newbie freelance writer with no experience, the way you build trust is to choose a clear niche and go ALL IN on marketing your niche expertise.
Of course, you’ll want to get testimonials and social proof as quickly as possible, but it’s a process.
Give yourself time to learn and grow. As long as you’ve chosen a profitable niche and you’re MARKETING your niche expertise, you’ll get there!
3. Prioritize your personal brand.
Take a decent-quality picture of yourself you can use on your website and on social media.
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy at first – just something clear that’ll help you start to build your brand and become recognizable!
For about a year, my picture was a headshot I took with my phone. I stood in front of a black shower curtain so I’d have a nice solid background, got the lighting set up best I could, and BOOM – that was my picture.
Your goal should be to start getting recognized as “the writer who specializes in _______.”
Like, “Oh yeah, that’s Jorden! She’s that writer with purple hair who writes amazing case studies.” …That sort of thing.
Of course, this ties into your niche too, so if you don’t have a niche marketing strategy yet, take my free class on how to make your first $1,000 using niche marketing right here.
…Now that you know what it takes to create a site that sells, it’s time for you to get out there and build your website.
Use the awesome writer websites in this blog post as inspiration, and you’ll be well on your way to landing clients with your site!
Did you enjoy this blog post? If you didn’t… well, nice knowin’ ya, I guess! But if you did enjoy the advice, be sure to click here and follow me on Instagram – I share more writing tips over there @JordenMakelle!