Top Seven Tips on Creating a Portfolio That Drives Your Home Business
Starting a home business is easier than ever thanks to e-commerce and the internet as a whole. You have more ways to connect with potential customers, so you can win new clients and grow your business from home. Other resources that are needed to grow the home business including funding, access to marketing tools, and third-party services, are just as easy to find online.
In many cases, connecting with potential customers is best done with a strong portfolio. Whether you are offering design services or products that solve specific customer problems, developing a portfolio as your online storefront is something you need to do. That online portfolio will also act as an anchor for other online marketing activities.
What you need is a portfolio that converts; a portfolio that drives your home business. When you direct traffic to a strong portfolio, you can easily convert a large portion of that traffic and earn new clients almost immediately. These top seven tips we are about to discuss in this article will get you started with creating a portfolio that drives your home business.
Make It Accessible
The way you set up your portfolio is important. You can add a Portfolio section to your website or have a dedicated site created for the purpose of displaying your work, products, and services. Regardless of the approach that you want to take, you need to make sure that the portfolio is accessible at all times.
This means choosing a platform or a service that is not only flexible and easy to use but also reliable. Fortunately, you don’t have to jump through hoops to set up a reliable portfolio online.
Sticking with Format.com as an example, it is also reassuring to know that you can always turn to the platform’s customer support whenever you run into issues with your portfolio. Reliable customer support is another mark of a reliable service too.
Make It Easy to Share
Before you dig deeper into fine-tuning your portfolio for a specific audience, it is also necessary to make sure that the online portfolio is easy to share. Viewers naturally share the pages – the works – they love, and that could potentially bring more traffic for you to convert into customers.
Let’s say a viewer with 10,000 Twitter followers share your latest work. 1,000 followers decide to visit your portfolio upon seeing the Tweet, so you get an instant boost of viewers from that single share. If you can convert 1 percent of that traffic into customers, you are looking at 10 new clients to work with.
Add a Share button to your pages. Make sure sharing your work is something that can be done in one or two steps. Don’t forget to add your branding, a hashtag, or a mention so that you can keep track of social shares and optimize them further in the future.
Tell a Story
Having an accessible portfolio is a great start, but that doesn’t mean you can relax after setting up the portfolio. The next step, which is adding content to the portfolio, is just as important. You need to tell a compelling story with every piece of work, image, design, and element you add to your portfolio.
There are several ways to tell a story in a portfolio too. For example, you can show the process of creating your latest work to keep the audience interested. Start with how you come up with your product ideas and show every step of the process in an appealing way.
Your stories don’t have to be particularly complicated; in fact, they shouldn’t. The simpler your stories, the easier they will be to follow, and the more the viewers will like them. Add something to look forward to at the end of the story to keep viewers returning for more.
Make It Personal
Showing only the work you have done for big, well-known clients is usually how people set up their portfolios. It is a great way to build credibility as a business. If bigger clients trust your home business, why shouldn’t others?
However, filling your portfolio with big projects also has its disadvantages. For starters, potential customers will see you as expensive to work with. It is also possible to make your entire portfolio appears colder – less personal – when only the bigger projects are highlighted.
For the portfolio to drive more business, it needs to be relatable. Think about the target customers and take the time to learn more about what they like. Show off your personal and pro-bono projects too. You are adding your soul and showing your passion with these simple tweaks.
Think About Your Brand
There are reasons why a portfolio needs to be consistent and focused, and branding is definitely one of those reasons. Your portfolio will greatly affect the way others (in this case potential clients) see your home business.
This is something you can craft from the start. Once again, you need to take a step back and spend some time thinking about what you want your business to be known for best. Do you offer products that you want to highlight? Is there a particular service that you want to push?
Select a handful of main ideas or key messages and build your portfolio around them. Using specific methods to display your strengths and specialties helps amplify the effects. That brings us to our next tip.
The Portfolio Is as Important
We’ve been focusing on the content of your portfolio up until this point. Don’t let that lead you into thinking that the portfolio itself doesn’t matter. In fact, every detail about the portfolio should be crafted for the specific objectives you want to achieve.
The way you display your content will also create impressions in the minds of potential customers. This means utilizing elements like layouts, fonts, colors, and visuals to really deliver your best products or ideas to the audience in the right way.
For the portfolio to be effective, you also have to think about consistency. Those elements you use to highlight certain things about your business need to be used in a consistent way for them to produce the right effects.
Last but certainly not least, utilize other parts of your online presence to strengthen the portfolio. It is now easy to integrate other online activities with your portfolio online. For instance, you can automatically add your Instagram posts to your portfolio site or simply display the latest posts to drive the audience’s interest.
On the other hand, you can also use social media to drive more traffic to your portfolio. Make sure the portfolio is compatible with social media sites like Twitter and Facebook so that you get a thumbnail and a short description with every portfolio link you share.
Use your online portfolio as the foundation for other marketing activities. More importantly, make sure customers can reach you easily after browsing through the online portfolio; yes, I’m talking about adding a clear and easy to use Contact page for customers.
With these seven tips in mind, crafting a portfolio that really directs business to your home-based company is even easier to do. Start today, pick the right platform to use, and develop a compelling portfolio for your future customers to see.
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