If you’re a freelance writer, a photographer, a filmmaker, or a creative professional of any kind, odds are you have a portfolio to showcase your work. Portfolios are essentially a type of resume; they’re a way for clients to know if they want to hire you. They (hopefully) open doors and opportunities. Whether you’re a seasoned freelancer or are just getting started working for yourself and getting used to showing your work, here are five tips you don’t want to overlook when enhancing your freelance portfolio.
1. Be clear with your mission
Who are you? What do you do? What makes your work stand out? Answering all these questions will work in your favor when enhancing your portfolio and attracting customers. Website visitors should be able to spend just a few minutes on your website and immediately know your mission—and if it suits them, which it hopefully will.
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2. Do your research
Which portfolios excite you—and why? Gather examples of different portfolios that inspire you and use them as a reference when creating your own. With user-friendly websites such as Squarespace and Wix, you can personalize your portfolio while also drawing inspiration from their templates and designs.
3. Include your best work
This tip seems obvious—but make sure to show the work you’re the proudest of. Like a resume, you don’t want to include anything in your portfolio that’s dated or unnecessary. You also don’t want to overwhelm your portfolio visitor. Similar to putting your best foot forward, including your best work will increase the odds of creating the best first impression.
4. Elaborate on your projects
In your portfolio, you want to show and tell. Depending on the form, some work doesn’t need much explanation. However, it’s a good idea to expand upon your work in your portfolio. It adds a personal touch while providing context for your processes and strategies. You can add information about your work type if you’re a freelance writer. If you’re a photographer, you can do the same—and maybe even share your experience from behind the camera.
5. Update your portfolio regularly
So you’re done enhancing your portfolio. But odds are you’re not really done. Having a portfolio is an ongoing process. You should keep it relevant, adding new work when you can, so clients can see not only your most recent work but also that you care enough to maintain it.
With these five tips, you have the tools to maintain a stellar portfolio—and hopefully a stellar freelance career.