Give your clients a clear representation of what you do
Having everything you have ever done in your portfolio may not give your clients a firm understanding of what you do best. It is best to pick out the best pieces you have in your portfolio that show exactly what you want to do in your freelancing. For instance, if you would like to design only websites, then your portfolio shouldn’t have logos and print work as part of your portfolio.
But why not show clients what else you can do? It is great that you are versatile and can do all things, but your clients are looking for someone who specializes and is very proficient in just the area that they need work done. Take for example, if you needed a roof done on your home. You wouldn’t look for and hire a handyman who does minor repairs to all things to do with a house, and can do minor roof work. You are going to look and hire someone who specializes in roofs, who does nothing but replace and repair roofs all day every day.
Show only the best five pieces of work in each area you want to focus in
Why? Because clients don’t want to see everything you have ever done in that area, they just want to see the most successful and best pieces you have done. If you bore them with everything you have done in that area, then they will really not have much to look forward to when hiring you because they think you have already done it all and will basically repeat what you have done in the past.
For instance, if you are focusing your portfolio on branding work, show your clients the best five-seven logos, five-seven stationary sets, etc. Now if you want to only focus in web design, then figure out how you can divide all of your website design. Can you divide it up into industries? Types of projects? If so, then use those divisions as a basis of how many pieces you should show.
Make your work shine, not your portfolio
What? Isn’t your work and portfolio the same thing? Well, yes. However, your work is the pieces in your portfolio. Think about if you were to show your portfolio in person. Would you have all of your work in a shiny, flashy, colorful folder? Probably not. Your portfolio is the collection of your work pieces. Thus, if you want to show your portfolio online, then make your work stand out, not your site. Make sense?
Explain what you had to accomplish with each project
Your prospective clients may enjoy looking at your work, but they are really only seeing half of the story. They don’t know what you were working to accomplish in each piece. Take a few extra moments and explain the purpose of the work, what challenges you faced, and how you successfully solved the client’s problems. Prospective clients will eat this up!
Do you have a call to action?
A call to action is a vehicle that will help motivate your prospects to take that next step and contact you about your services. Your portfolio, in many ways, is only as good as your call to action. If you have no way for your clients to get in touch with you, then you are doing yourself injustice. Also, simply posting your information isn’t much better.
You want to excite your prospects by explaining that you are eager to help them solve their problems and to succeed. Have throughout your portfolio methods in which they can get in touch with you. Display your email, phone, Twitter page, etc. in many different ways throughout your site. However, a word of caution: don’t overdo it. Find that right mix of work and call to action on your site.
So does your portfolio meet any of the tips above?