Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Tips for Portfolios

If you are a writer or a designer of any kind, you must have a portfolio on your web site. Perhaps your business is suited to case studies instead. These examples of your work are critical areas of content to have if you are in a position to "show and tell" what you do for our customers. But are you taking advantage of all the strategies you can on your web site? Read these tips to learn more:

* If you have a great many items or case studies in your portfolio, categorize them so that they are better organized and clearly grouped.

* Make it easy to navigate with a clear menu to go through them in a linear manner, return to an index and if categorized, return to more like it.

* Take advantage of the ability cross-link pages in your web site. For example, where you mention a type of service in one area of your site, you could link to an example of this service in action elsewhere.

* Never assume the reader knows what you have done without at least a brief explanation. Better yet, break it down into problem->solution terms and remember to write in layman’s terms.

* Take advantage of the title tags on every page by creating keyword rich titles that describe your services. This can only help in ranking the relevance of your content in search engines.

* Hopefully, you already have access to the statistics for your web site. Study this data to get an idea of which areas of your site seem to get the most traffic, and aim your portfolio samples towards these areas of interest.

* Ask a select group of your clients or prospects in your target market which of your existing portfolio items or case studies are the most and least impressive. Use this information to make all of them shine.

* Are your portfolio items and case studies fresh? Make a point, at least once a year, to go through them and either edit or remove those which seem a bit stale or out of date.

* Be aware of how the technology you use to display your gallery of work might not be available to all viewers on all browsers and computers. As much fun as the flashier ‘slide show’ formats are, not everyone can see it. Know your audience.


(c) Eileen Parzek, 2005

Eileen Parzek is an award winning graphic designer and writer providing digital and print graphic design and web design services. Always found at the intersection of information, creativity and technology, her business, Business Design Studio ( helps small businesses make a big impression, increase their reach and grow.

May be republished with full bio and credit link to