What portfolio websites are usually missing from their pages

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Presenting your work online is important for creatives. To make things easier, creating a good portfolio will help you a lot in the long term. A well-designed portfolio is a great way to start you off. Showing your work correctly will help you gain an audience and attract customers.

If your portfolio looks unappealing, your will lower your chances of getting positive feedback. We need to look at the most common mistakes that appear in our portfolios and fix them to avoid failure.

Some important website elements are shown below that could help you make a better performance in the future and improve your work. 

Simplicity

So, you’ve created a portfolio that has a lot of elements such as banners, buttons, and graphics. Chances are that people might get overwhelmed and confused by them, which is not what we want. Your portfolio will appear disorganized, they will get distracted and find it harder to navigate. The goal is to make things easier for them. Look at web developer portfolios, for example. They’re nailing it with simplicity. Most of them only have the basics. Rarely you see useless graphics or effects.

Careful selection and clear hierarchy

When figuring out what examples to exhibit to your audience, keep in mind that they won’t spend all their time looking at all of your work. They will most likely glance at a couple of your pieces and instantly make a decision.

You must cautiously select what to include and present as your work. Most importantly, the more work you present, the more you need to categorize and organize it in a way that is easy to grasp.

Case studies and testimonials

Getting positive feedback from satisfied users is an excellent way to show that you are delivering quality content. It increases your chances of attracting potential clients and making a good impression. Being approved and getting good ratings by businesses will help you stand out. This will help you have good relationships with clients and collect testimonials from them.

Write case studies for your projects and offer context to introduce people to your work. Adding too many things and leaving no explanation gives people a hard time figuring out what it means. Simplicity is the thing you should be aiming for. Get them familiar and walk them through the process and that should enhance the quality of your portfolio.  

Content for the targeted audience

Missing your target audience is something you need to be cautious about. Creating content that is targeted towards the wrong audience will lower your chances of getting the right clients. In most cases, people want to please their families and friends by adapting the content to appeal to them.

Your loved ones will admire your portfolio, but on the other hand, you might have lost a potential client by doing that. Users might not find what they came for and will avoid your work. 

Personality

Users will often look at your website and will be curious to know more about you. Introduce yourself and give visitors a chance to get familiar with your character. Provide a good profile photo to let them know a little bit more about your identity and what makes you stand out.

Even if it’s a professional portfolio, having originality is what makes a difference. Showing that you have passion for what you do will help them gain trust in your abilities and skills.

Easy navigation

When planning the way your portfolio will look, it needs to be easy to navigate. By separating and organizing your work into categories, you are making things simple for the users. It makes browsing less difficult and they have saved time instead of getting lost on the website.

Before starting your portfolio, take a look at other portfolio sites and try to analyze what is acceptable and what categories are being used by people to organize their work. 

Also, to make it easy to navigate, make sure you use as little JavaScript effects as possible. Sure, they’re cool, and some animated websites are really fun, but if you use too many of them, they might drag your website down.

Heavy emphasis on the writing

Most creators simply list their projects and demonstrate their work to their users. It’s something to be expected, but allow them to know something about everyone involved in the development of the project as well and how you collaborated to make the project happen.

Giving details about the creators and the process is important in engaging the audience. It is suggested to put your writing before the visual work itself. 

About Me section

If you don’t want to give your future clients a hard time finding you, always include your contact information. Be sure to provide details about yourself and what you do in the About Me or Meet the team section. You might get a pass if you are already famous, but in most cases, it might frustrate and put potential clients off. 

Motive

Sometimes the reason why most portfolio websites aren’t successful is that the visitors are not familiar with your goals. People need to know that you are determined and know what you are aiming for. Clients can’t read your thoughts and what you want to accomplish.

Often the best way to prevent this is to figure out what your website will be about. So you need to make things clear and let them know about your motives. If you are searching for a full-time job, for example, it would be helpful to add a “hire me” section on your site. 

Search engine optimization

You wouldn’t want your work to be hard to find, because that would mean you wasted your time for nothing. A great way to stop that from happening is by optimizing it for search engines. You want people to able to find you easier on the internet.

Keeping your site up-to-date through a blog is one of the ways you can stay relevant. That’s because Google wants new, updated content. Be sure to also include a short video that will engage viewers to stay on your site. 

Logo and tagline

Your logo or name should catch the eye of the viewers. The strategy is to place it at the top left-hand corner. Since the visitors from the West read from left to right, you want to grab their attention with your logo by using that fact. You can also hyperlink the logo to your portfolio’s homepage. 

If you finished developing your portfolio, spread the word! Digital marketing is a crucial step to get your name out there. Create many social media accounts and add them to your website. Making sure your portfolio gets good ratings and reviews is vital for improvement and is always worth aiming for.

About the Author

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Bogdan Sandu

Bogdan is a designer and editor at DesignYourWay. He’s reading design books the same way a hamster eats carrots, and talks all the time about trends, best practices and design principles.

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