Increase Traffic To Your Portfolio

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There are hundreds of blogs and eBooks out there that describe ways of gaining more traffic but none (that we could find), give you the information and tips on increasing more traffic to your portfolio! The blog posts which we found were too generic and none told you about targeting traffic to your portfolio, which a lot of creatives crave. It may be because it’s often considered hard to obtain traffic to portfolios as they normally lack keyword rich content, as it’s mainly images.

Without relevant engaging content (we’re referring to actual words and sentences here) it’s rather hard to get those visitors in and to remain interested during their visit. If your work engages them, then great, that’s what we are aiming for, but how do they find you and your content in the first place? It’s fantastic getting traffic to your blog or social media profiles but ultimately you want people to see your work, see your talent and hopefully employ you! That’s why we’ve decided to put together this guide to help you gain more visitors to your portfolio.

It doesn’t matter if your an Illustrator, Designer, Animator, Fine Artist or whoever you are, it’s always important to know how to get visitors into your website. However this guide isn’t a one-size fits all post, by that we mean it isn’t another generic post telling you how to SEO or how to link build. This post is simply about getting traffic to your portfolio and tips and tricks that you as the designer can easily put into action today! So where can you begin?

Utilising Pinterest

If you haven’t already it’s time to start utilising the power of Pinterest. If you’re a designer it’s likely that you have a lot of visual content and that’s what Pinterest was developed for, amazing, inspiring visual content.

With it’s growing 70 million+ users, it make sense to start investing some time in Pinterest which will result in free and engaged traffic back to your site. One of the main reasons why we love Pinterest is that is incredibly easy to share content.

Pinterest themselves offer a handful of excellent resources and widgets to embed onto your site. Our favourite, the browser bookmark. On any page, click the bookmark from your browser, a pop-up opens and you’re displayed with all images from the site to share on Pinterest. Choose the image, write a short description and off it goes! It truly is one of the best places for visual content, but how?

Sharing content this easily now means you can potentially reach brand new people, which over time will hopeful start engaging with your content. But hold on, how does sharing content on Pinterest have any benefit over what you might already do on Twitter or Facebook and help drive traffic to your site? Well, without you knowing (for the benefit of site owners), Pinterest automatically takes the content source and embeds this information with every shared image.

What this means that if you shared all your work on Pinterest, you’ve got just as many link sources back to your portfolio. Better still, if your content is re-pinned by users then that’s even more exposure to their followers too.

You do however have to make sure your sharing content using the bookmark tool or using widgets embed on your site for Pinterest to establish your site as the content source. You can also view your own personal Pinterest analytics to see how much traffic your getting from your pins once you’ve attached your website URL to your account.

So why don’t you give Pinterest a go and see how much extra traffic you could gain, for free?

Take The Dribbble Approach

So we’ve discussed what to do with your current portfolio to help boost your portfolio traffic but what about those who have a small or non-existent portfolio? How can you create a buzz or gain any visitors to your site when content levels are low? Well Dribbble could be your next best friend. Let’s break down what Dribbble does and how it’s unique business model works before establishing how we can use this approach in getting wanted traffic to your site.

Dribble’s community have dubbed its service as Twitter for designers. As we know with Twitter, you’re limited by 140 characters. Dribbble is similar, your limited to uploading standard images to a maximum of 400 x 300px. The idea is to share with others what you’re currently working on. Of course your on going project is going to be far from finished but Dribbble enables you to share snippets where areas of it might be unfinished. So how could this help you?

Well, you don’t have to add only completed work to your portfolio. Adding on-going projects shows your still active. Maybe you’ve had gaps in getting work? Maybe you’re working on a large project that might take a few months to complete, like an iPhone app for example? Instead of indicating to potential customers that you’re not getting much work (possibly indicating your not very experienced within your field), if there’s room add snippets of work that you’re doing at the moment. This does three main things;

1. Makes you different.
2. Keeps your portfolio fresh and always up-to-date.
3. Gives you content to share during down periods of work

Not many designers add on-going projects because they feel it has no benefit. What they are missing is that it’s getting people interested. Like a cliffhanger in movie, people want to know more. People may subscribe to your blog or keep coming back for updates on your projects.

So if your portfolio is looking empty or if it’s a slow month, add some on going projects to your portfolio, it doesn’t have to be commercial work either! Now with this extra wealth of content you’re able to share more on social networks (including Pinterest) to help drive traffic to your portfolio. Just remember more is less, so don’t over do it.

Offer Something For Free

This ties in nicely with the Dribbble Approach, creating and offering something free when you’re low on work or have spare time you want to put to good use. As a designer, think about something you could design to help others and release for free on your website. It could be an IOS app wireframe or collection of social media icons. Reason this works so well is that people love sharing free things with friends.

It’s a great way to get extra traffic to your site. To take it a step further, why not show how you made within your portfolio? That way your getting traffic to your download page and your portfolio too! It’s another way to fill gaps in your portfolio and even better for new comers to the market. So why don’t you set yourself a challenge and make something free on your website?

We hope this has been a great resource in gaining more traffic to your portfolio. Have you implemented any of these tips yet or got any tips that you found useful? Please don’t hesitate to comment below.

About the author - Ash


I'm a web designer from Hampshire, England, and have been working with websites for nearly 10 years. I have a deep interest in website design and development, art, and most importantly t-shirt design. I also dabble in surfing, photography and drum and bass! I'm also the co-founder of Graphic Tide, based in the United Kingdom.

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