Warning: this post is also a not-so-candid love letter to Squarespace.
I started my first blog when I was 15.
I really didn’t have much to say. Or, at least, I thought I didn’t. I mostly wrote about my day-to-day stuff. What I was reading, sharing something I had learned recently, it was pretty low-key. Eventually, once I was hired as a graphic designer, I started sharing my poster designs and writing a short paragraph about the work.
And people started to find it. And comment. And it was intimidating.
But I realized that it was also important.
I can’t guarantee it’ll be easy. Nor can I guarantee that it’ll be perfect.
But I can guarantee that no matter what your professional goals are, having a clean website that reflects what you do and who you are will help you, professionally and creatively.
1. Future employers will see it.
I love saying we live in a digital age. And I say it because it’s a reminder that owning some real estate on the Internet holds a profound amount of weight. If a future employer can type your name in a Google search and be rewarded with a result, it immediately gives you a boost during your job search. If Google at least knows you, you might be somebody worth knowing.
They’ll also draw the following conclusions:
- You love what you do… at least enough to do the work to create a functioning website.
- You’re patient, professional and detail-oriented.
- You’re smart. It goes with out saying that some basic amount of internet savvy-ness or cooperation with a designer went into your website.
2. Future clients will see it.
If you’re showcasing a skill or selling a piece of art, then you need to put yourself (and your stuff) out into the pixelated void for future clientele to browse and explore and determine if you’re someone they want to pursue a professional relationship with. Post videos, photos, writing samples, artwork, anything that adds weight to your online portfolio. Even if you build it up a piece at a time, over the course of a few months you’ll have an impressive library of evidence that you are indeed committed to your work.
3. You are your brand.
My dad bought me my own website domain when I was 12. Why? Because I am my name. I am my brand. No matter what I chose to pursue (whether it was improvisational comedy or writing or designing), I would need a little piece of the internet to own and manipulate to reflect whatever field I was in.
It’s a way for people to get a sense of your personality before they actually get to know you. Like a sneak peek of a movie.
4. It keeps you accountable.
Your professional collateral is going to accumulate and your style is going to change. Having a website is like having your personal résumé constantly circulating the internet. It's important to maintain. Like doing the dishes. Or laundry... but more fun. Unless you have fun doing laundry. In which case, yes, it's exactly like doing laundry. Maintaining your blog or refreshing your portfolio regularly keeps you in the game.
5. It’s fun.
Yeah hi. You have the creative liberty to do whatever you want with this thing. Photography! Colors! Buttons! Links! I live for this stuff. So maybe your enthusiasm might be a bit lower on the scale, but I promise you: it's really fun and it's worth it and, yes, it's important.
You need a website. So what are you waiting for? Click here to sign up for a free two-week trial account with Squarespace.