Looking for a job? Displaying your work? Growing a business? Keeping a journal? There are a lot of reasons to have a personal website, and we've all seen some stunning examples out there. It seems like a smart idea, but the prospect of researching a service, collecting the content and updating regularly is a little overwhelming. It's something you'd put together if it's the standard for your profession—graphic design, photography—if you're serious about blogging, or just really into the internet.
Excuses! All excuses. We live in an economy of convenience; you can get Häagen-Dazs delivered and gift boxes curated for your dog. If there's one thing that's long been figured out, it's online presence, and one of the best ways to get out there is Squarespace. You might have a million reasons for not having your own site (as with anything), but here are a few you'll just have to scratch off the list.
I don't even know where to start.
Things have come a long way since LiveJournal and GeoCities. Shopping around for a publishing platform could be daunting if you didn't really know your stuff, but that's why you're reading this post right now: Squarespace is there for you. As far as "trying new things" goes, it's pretty much the easiest challenge you'll conquer in your near future. Start a free trial (without a credit card, mind you!), choose a template, type out some stuff, and you already have something that's leagues better than you expected.
Design is not my forte, and that's putting it lightly.
If you think even Squarespace can't keep you from making something that looks like a government website from the '90s, you'd be wrong. If there's one thing they're famous for, it's accessible design. Choose from dozens of gorgeous, award-winning templates, then deliver the knockout punch with your very own personalized logo from the free professional Logo Maker. Drag-and-drop lets you obsess over your work instead of spacing and line breaks, while built-in responsive design optimizes your site for mobile browsers and every size display out there. That's something even huge companies can't always say for themselves.
My work isn't portfolio-based.
That's alright! Even if your work isn't highly visual, your site is still a great excuse to display your resume, some client testimonials, a photo of yourself, links to social media, anything that takes your application beyond the old Resume-Cover Letter combo. The important thing to remember is you want to "show, don't tell" when it comes to your talent, so having a great-looking site that's organized nicely and easy to navigate will do wonders for a first impression.
...I don't work.
Definitely a tough spot to be in, but your site will actually be one of the most powerful tools in your job search. No portfolio, testimonials or work samples? Shift your focus. A blog about your quest for the perfect diner, your eternal boat-building project, or your trip through Southeast Asia is still compelling for potential employers. It proves that you have interests, that you can form sentences, that you can apply yourself to something, that you have follow through. Not even a round of interviews could really reveal that about someone!
Eh, no one's going to look me up.
You'd be surprised. Plus, not many things have the potential to be more mortifying than a Google search of one's self. You assume you have a clean history until, boom, there they are: a 1997 comment on Pokémon World Forum and a Pinterest you most certainly thought was private. Instead of letting the internet gods dictate what your searchers find, take matters into your own hands. Written by you, designed by you, crafted by you—your website is honestly the best advertising money can buy.
Already a proud Squarespace user? We'd like to highlight your site in our next post! Whether it's your portfolio, web store, travel journal or food blog, call us out on Twitter or Facebook and we'll feature your work. Not a bad way to get a little exposure for your brand—or just some simple bragging rights!
This post is brought to you by Squarespace. Their completely inclusive, all-in-one service provides content management, hosting, domains, social integrations, e-commerce, and 24-hour customer support starting at only $8 a month. Start a 14-day free trial today, no credit card required. Use code GOTHAMIST for 10% off!