Make Your Own Website: Why You Just Should
In the world of creative women in this day and age, a common conversation topic that comes up is websites. Websites are awesome because they are a nearly free way for us to display our work and to represent ourselves to the world, without having to rely on other people or platforms to do so for us. It's a huge opportunity, one that millions of women worldwide have jumped on.
It's not always simple. There are many different ways to "have a website," depending on who you are and what you want to display. There are blogs, shops, landing pages, etc. And there is also the monstrous social media vortex: so powerful yet so distracting. Often we can feel that we are representing ourselves fully on social media, but I would argue that you don't own that projection as much as you would own one that you create at your own URL. My general rule is to remember less is more in all things digital. It can get overwhelming real quick.
I have personally spoken to dozens of women who want a website because it feels like the final step in becoming "legit." Many of us creatives have tons of work or product or ideas, but no where to store them and show them to the world. Websites act as streamlined portfolios with a profound and valuable simplicity. They also make it easy for you to be contacted. It can really be frustrating when you meet a talented creative who has desirable services, yet they are nearly impossible to track down on the internet. Or they write down an ancient 1990s email for you on the back of your own business card; one with kitschy words in it and an odd series of numbers, like firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll tell you right now this is not good for business. It's fine, it just isn't that good.
And honestly, it's not all about business. I get it. Business is overwhelming, and as much as I love the hustle, I also burn out on it a lot and I just want quiet and space and time to be me through my work without worrying about dollar signs and clients. But when I do want to bring in the dollar signs and the clients, I like to be professional about it.
And here's the big secret: you can have a website right now. You are already legit. You don't have to have a huge body of work, or a brick and mortar shop or studio, or even a professional head shot. You don't have to be published, you don't have to have a gallery show repertoire, or any published interviews. You don't have to have a portfolio or a blog. You can just have a website. Just do it right now. Your legit-ness just got a hundred times more legit. Am I right?
As a consultant, I sit down and talk with tons of women who want to build a website for themselves but feel that they "aren't quite ready." This is often for a few reasons: it feels like an unjustifiable expense, or they feel like they don't have their shit together quite enough yet to have a "real" website. And it just isn't true. The glory of the internet is that you can be legit whenever you want. Age and experience are irrelevant. You should build your website. It will make you feel important and official. Which will make you feel more professional. Which will make you work more and get more jobs and clients and gigs. Your website can be simple or grand, it's almost limitless, all the possibilities.
Pay someone to do it for you if you keep putting it off or if you freeze up when it's time to do it. If there is one valuable lesson I've learned over the years (besides from having a simple URL and email address), it's this: delegate, delegate, delegate. This is one of the crucial keys to joyful success.