Portfolio Builder: Set Up an Impressive Portfolio Page

Sometimes you find yourself with an unexpectedly large amount of time on your hands— why not take advantage of that free time to refine your web design skills? Our Portfolio Builder series will walk you through some projects you can work on to diversify your skills as a web developer!

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Plan Out Your Main Page

First impressions count. When someone visits your portfolio page, what kind of web designer should they see? If you’re focused on WordPress development, show off your ability to customize themes and plugins— just be sure that the page still loads fast!
If you’re working towards getting a full time job as a developer, try showing off your versatility. Link to multiple projects that each use different frameworks and back-end programming languages. On your central ‘hub’ page, be sure to clearly label what each project is and provide an idea of what skills you were using when you made that site.

Remember to keep your contact information visible. If someone finds your portfolio and wants to hire you for design work, you’ll be glad that your contact information was easy to find!

Update, Trim, and Stay Focused

You should plan to upgrade and update your portfolio page on a regular basis. The ‘next big thing’ is always around the corner; you want to show prospective clients that you are up to date on the latest trends!

Know your Audience

The focus of your portfolio should reflect your potential audience. Other developers will be impressed by your made-from-scratch CSS animations, but many small business owners just want something professional looking that is easy to update. If you are targeting two very different demographics, don’t hesitate to create two different portfolio sites.

Don’t list every project you’ve ever created on your main page! Highlight a few of your best works so prospective clients know what you’re all about!

Blog: yes or no?

A blog is a great way to promote yourself— but only if you are able to keep up with it consistently. Is content development part of your skill-set? If so, a well-maintained blog will be a great selling point in your favor. If not, you may have difficulty finding appropriate topics to talk about on a consistent basis.
If you do want a blog but are not sure what to talk about, try talking about yourself! Use the space to discuss how you built the projects on your site. That way, potential clients will get a better understanding of the design process and how you work.

No Testimonials? Volunteer!

It always helps to have a positive word or two on your page. Testimonials from previous clients can go a long way in selling your service. If you don’t have any previous customers when you’re just starting out, try taking a few low-cost or no-cost jobs to get some experience and positive feedback. One popular way to do this is to volunteer to help charities and local organizations with their web presence. The organization or charity will get some much needed help, while you get some positive customer feedback you can post on your site.

Use Subdomains to Show Off Different Frameworks

Add some variety to your portfolio page by creating some subdomains. Subdomains are a convenient way to show off just how many frameworks and software suites you are familiar with. Softaculous comes with something for everyone: back-end developers can install Laravel and try building something from scratch. If you’re a WordPress developer, go ahead and install other Content Management Systems (CMSs) on some subdomains. Software like Drupal, Joomla, and Moodle all have their dedicated customers. Use your portfolio to play with new ideas and you may be surprised at how helpful it turns out to be!

Remember, Softaculous comes pre-installed for free on ourShared Business Hosting plans!

Ronnie H Technical Writer

Ronnie is a technical writer and content specialist at InMotion Hosting.

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