I’ve heard it for years–no one visits websites anymore. Authors don’t need websites. Except now, they need them most likely more than ever. I’ve been a proponent of author websites since I first was published back in 2002. And in fact, my first domain name was originally registered in the late 90’s, so I’ve had a website for many years.
The truth is, author websites are just as relevant as they were in the past. And here are three good reasons why authors need a website.
1. Readers want a single point of contact to find all your books and all your links.
Some readers are on Twitter, others on Facebook. It makes sense that not every author cultivates every platform. Who has the time for that? But readers need a place to go to sign up for your newsletter, find your books, and “haunt” you on social media.
2. Your website can be a source of income.
I know this sounds a bit far fetched. Most authors think of websites as a money sink, not a revenue source. However, if your books aren’t enrolled in Kindle Unlimited, you’re free to sell them from your website. (Turn your Blog into a Bookstore will talk you through how to do this. It’s also something I help with–contact me.) In addition, you can use your website to help boost your Paetron, monetize a membership/subscription program, or sell other items that you make/services you provide.
3. Readers can contact you.
Sure, you could put this under a “single point of contact”, but your website should host a contact form so readers can tell you how much they love your work. In addition, you can use a form on your website to collect information to create an ARC or street team. And, in the event that a social media site goes down or closes, your readers will know where else to find you.
Having a website looks professional. It shows that you’re serious about your writing, not a hobbyist. And, it gives publishers or agents, if those are on your career path, the same impression too.