How to Build an Impressive Online Portfolio

Creating an online portfolio that impresses clients is one of the effective ways to land freelancing jobs. What is an impressive online portfolio, and how does it influence your job applications?


What is an Online Work Portfolio?

An online portfolio is something to show off to your prospective clients. In addition, it is something that proves your legitimacy as a freelancer. 

Building an impressive online portfolio requires knowledge and proof of works and experiences. That is because these elements make your portfolio more appealing and successful.

There are various websites to create your online portfolio from scratch for free. However, it is vital to note that you need to know the essential details inside your portfolio.

How to create an impressive one? Today, I will show you a walk-through of building your successful online portfolio.


How to Build an Impressive Online Portfolio


1. Curate Your Work

Overloading your portfolio with work samples is not healthy. This means that quality is more powerful than quantity. For instance, if you are a blog writer and have written hundreds of blogs, you don’t need to put up all the blogs. You need to pick the top 5 best works and include them in your online portfolio.

Always put in mind that your online portfolio is a guiding factor to getting hired. Thus, together with your cover letter and resume, these three must present a “wow” factor.


2. Put yourself in the client’s shoes

When you decide to become a freelancer, the first step is to identify the niche you will focus on. This niche is the specific services you will offer to your clients. And by effectively knowing it, you’ll be able to identify your target clients.

Now, you have identified your target clients. So, you can now tailor-fit your online portfolio to your client’s needs.

Being specific with your target clients allows you to be more straightforward and target your sample of works. That way, you are validating your skills through your sample outputs.

Alternatively, if you’re a newbie, you can include experiences from your offline jobs. What if you’re a fresh graduate? Well, you can also have samples or outputs during your education time. If not, you can enroll in online training and build your best online portfolio along the way.


3. Make it visually compelling

As a freelance graphic designer or photographer, it is evident that your portfolio will be visually appealing. However, writers, coaches, and others who work in less aesthetic fields should still find a way to make their portfolios attractive.

How to present your work samples most appealingly? Always include photographs of yourself on the job. Perhaps, like a formal photo during a meeting with clients or your work-from-home setup.

Additionally, in presenting your work samples, you can leverage tools like Canva to create a nice image that reflects the piece of writing, so you aren’t just delivering a wall of text.

Here’s an example of a compelling online portfolio:

Mira AnamaeFreelance SaaS Writer Portfolio

Mira shows her versatility as a writer using examples from past clients, her own work, and her own blog. 


4. Easy to find and navigate

You want your portfolio to be more compelling, which means you need to host it in places easy for potential clients to find. Suppose you have a freelancer website, for example. In that case, you should allocate an entire page to your portfolio and feature that page in your main menu.

In addition, you also want to make it easy to navigate. You’ll want to organize your portfolio into sections and make it easy for the user to go from one section to the next. As a result, when clients find your online portfolio, they’re impressed quickly.


5. Put background information on each item

You should provide some context around each of the items in your portfolio so that anyone viewing the content will know what you do. Include who the project was for, what you did, and, if possible, the results.

For instance, you have had logo projects previously. In your portfolio, you must put the logo and other details like the client’s name (ask permission first), company name, and quote from the client.


6. Choose The Best Portfolio Theme For Your Work

Numerous sites offer excellent themes for your online portfolio. From Bookmark, GoDaddy, SimpleSite, and many more, you can create an impressive online portfolio for FREE (but of course, with limitations). 

You can start to build with a free account, showcase your work, and eventually move to a premium account when you have a budget.

On the other hand, if your online portfolio is not impressive, the client will not spend more time checking your proof of excellent works. And so, making an excellent first impression of your website is absolutely crucial to the success of your freelancing business.


7. Case Studies or Testimonials, which is essential?

Among the two, which is more significant to your online portfolio? What’s the difference between these two?

A case study reviews a specific project or client relationship, highlighting your approach to solving a particular problem and the results you brought in. On the other hand, testimonials are statements from your clients or customers about your business. They can be simple quotes, customer reviews, or even video statements from your clients proving the value you provided to them.

A case study and testimonials differ, yet they play a distinct role in your portfolio. While they are different, you should include them in your online portfolio to add value and impress your target clients.


8. Make It Easy To Contact You

It is imperative to present your contact information on your portfolio. You can add your contact details on the About Me page or a Contact page. Also, you must be responsive enough to answer emails and contact forms every day. This way, you are not wasting any opportunity to make clients move on to someone else.

Your “About Me” section in your portfolio is the most popular page as a freelancer. Therefore, provide visitors with a quick overview of yourself and what you do. In addition, introduce your work and your methods on this page. 

What makes an “About me” page compelling so that you stand out?

Write your About page as confident and professional while still maintaining a personal, friendly tone. While still allowing your personality to shine, you must make a good impression. Describe your professional background, expertise, education, or accomplishments. Your qualifications for the job will be evident from these details.

Moreover, add personal details or anecdotes. When people feel like they know you, they’re more likely to remember you.

Above all, choose a profile image that communicates your personality. Your potential clients also want to know who you are behind the work. 


9. Keep Updating Your Portfolio

If you don’t update your portfolio in a long time, you may appear inactive or unmotivated. Thus, keep updating your portfolio to show off your new work. 

It’s a good idea to upload new images once a month. If you use social media, you might want to consider reformatting your posts and images as new website content.


Tips to Build an Impressive Online Portfolio

A portfolio is a collection of examples that show your work. Your portfolio can contain testimonials or case studies. Still, it must also include the actual work itself—links to articles, a gallery of photos, or designs.

Do you need help when it comes to building your online portfolio? Learn freelancing from scratch and create a successful online portfolio that will bring you, clients.

Surge Digital Agency

Author Since: September 18, 2020

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