Blog versus website: which one’s better for freelancers?

As a freelancer, you need to have a professional online presence, no matter your niche. Some might argue that it’s enough just to have a resumé and the requisite social media profiles; don’t listen to them. Having our own .com adds a little something extra to any job application process – it signifies to potential employers that you’re taking your vocation with the utmost seriousness. The question of whether to make that .com a blog or a website depends on several factors, including portfolio needs, reader engagement, and budget.

Sharing specifics…

No matter the format, your .com should include a biography, and work history. It would be even better if written or video testimonials from coworkers or clients could be included. A professional headshot photo would be ideal, but sometimes the work speaks for itself – you’ll have to go with your instinct on this one. Of course, there’s a certain element of privacy to maintain, so in lieu of directly providing a phone number or email address, a contact page with a form to fill out should be enough.

Additionally, if you are concerned about sharing your portfolio due to possible plagiarism or copyright infringement, one idea is to always include a watermark that can’t be easily edited away. Otherwise, try to get work published online, then share links to those as a safety net, of sorts.

Considering costs…

I have found that the costs of maintaining a high-quality website or a high-quality blog are relatively equal. For example, the more storage space needed for files, the higher the price can be. Professional blogs, complete with various plugins, layouts, etc. do tend to be a little more expensive than static websites, though.

Types of visitors…

It goes without saying that if a you really want to encourage visitors to engage with the content you’re posting, a blog is the method to choose. Many blogs are structured nowadays so that there can be static pages within them with comments disabled.

At the same time, blog posts can have comments enabled if you so choose. Lessen instances of spam along the way by holding the comments in a moderation queue, or requiring visitors to either submit a CAPTCHA/fill out required fields before submitting their comments.

As for static websites, it’s more about visitors reading the content and providing their main source of feedback through a contact form. As with blog comments, a contact form can include required fields that need to be filled out before a message is sent. If there’s still a concern over getting spammed, you can set up an email address that’s strictly associated with the website.

The winning format…

If this was 10 years ago in the freelancing world, I would say that a static website format would be the better choice for all sorts of freelancing niches. If you’re a media freelancer, a static website is probably preferably, complemented, of course, by a video/photo social media platform for more immediate reach. What’s that, you say? You’re a writer? Then, a blog format is better due to its versatility. Design wisely, inform succinctly, and your blog or website can be your ticket to a myriad of freelance opportunities.

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