What's the Most Important Thing on an Author Website?

The book! It seems obvious, right?  But you’d be amazed at how hard it is to find information about the author’s book on some sites.

It’s fine to have other content on your author website or blog, but make sure that it’s really easy to find a description of your book and a link directly to a place where customers can buy the book.

Recently I visited the website of an author who had written a book on a topic that I have an interest in, but I could find no description of the book. I clicked on the link that said the book was available on Amazon and landed on Amazon’s home page. No, I did not make the effort to search out the book on Amazon, having already gotten a poor impression.

It’s helpful to look at your site through the eyes of a visitor who has never been there before.

    * What’s the first thing you see when you land on the site?

    * Is there a book cover visible on the home page and other pages? If your website is a blog, it’s easy to display your book cover in the sidebar, along with a link to the book description or purchase page. You can see a book cover and links to my books in the sidebar of this site under the heading "Book Marketing Guides".

    * Is there an obvious link to somewhere people can learn more about the book? From your main navigation menu, you could place a link that says something like "About the Book," "My Books" or "Buy the Book". On this site, the link says "Resources".

    * Is the book description compelling enough to motivate buyers?

    * Have you listed quotes from book reviews in the book description, to demonstrate that others find your book valuable or entertaining?

    * Is there a direct link to your book’s page on Amazon or some other place the book can be purchased? Check the links and make sure they work properly.

Don’t make it difficult for visitors to your website to learn about your book and buy it! Make sure your website does a good job of selling your book.

Oh, and you can find descriptions of all of my books here.

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This is a reprint from Dana Lynn Smith‘s The Savvy Book Marketer.

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