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Is an Author Website Worth the Investment?

Many authors wonder if building an author website is going to be worth it. After all, it’s an investment that may or may not get paid back to you.

Building an author website can do a lot more for you than make money. It can raise your profile, build a fanbase, etc… But that leads to the question: How do you put a dollar amount on it? How can you ensure that you get your money back and more?

That’s a hard question to answer. But what I CAN do is tell you all the different ways that you can financially benefit from your author website — both directly and indirectly — and then it’s up to you to figure out how much is worth spending.

Direct Benefits
There are only a few ways to collect money directly off your website. They are:

  • Selling your latest book. This is the obvious way to make money on an author website. Exactly how many books you sell (and how much money you make off of each sale) can depend on your publishing status, how much traffic you get, and how good a job you do selling your book on the website.
  • Advertising. There’s no reason you can’t put a Google adwords ad on your website. I can’t say we do it often, but we can do it. And it’s a nice way to collect a little bit of money each month.

Indirect Benefits
But there are so many more ways to indirectly benefit financially from your author website! Like…

  • Selling your book … just not on the website. Don’t judge the success of your website on how many books are sold through the site itself. Many people will want to go to the bookstore to buy it. Others will go back to Amazon.com later on and order it.
  • Selling your NEXT book. This is the beauty of an author website instead of a book website. With an author site, you can tout your next book before it’s available. You can collect email addresses of people who want to be notified as soon as that book is for sale. By having an author website, you can sell copies of your next book before it’s even published.
  • Network schmoozing… Having an author website can give you a HUGE leg up in the industry. Agents, publishers and the media will be far more likely to contact you and consider you an established author/expert if you have a website.
  • Promoting your services. Maybe you’re a career coach who wrote a book on success. Maybe you’re an expert on real estate who offers workshops, too. Your author website can be a great tool for not only promoting your writing, but also promoting your additional paid services to those who are impressed with your book.
  • Spread the word about book signings. You can promote any upcoming book signings on your website (and through Facebook/Twitter, etc…) to help improve the turnout. The benefit is twofold: 1) you can sell more books there; 2) you can build a better buzz about you and your book.

See what we mean? Whether or not you should spend the money to build an author website shouldn’t be determined only by how many books you plan to sell through the website. In fact, there are so many more ways that you can earn back what you invested … and hopefully a lot more!

Ready to talk with us about building your own author website? Contact us today for a free consultation!

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