I just recently started my business as a Freelance E-Learning developer. Any recommendations on where/how to create my online portfolio?
posted by Stephanie Williams
Christy Tucker said: I used Wordpress for mine. It was very easy to build my portfolio. If you're reasonably technical, basic Wordpress isn't hard to set up. April Hayman wrote a good series on creating a portfolio a few years ago. The third post in her series compares Wordpress and Joomla (although read the comments about Wordpress.org).
- How to Develop an Instructional Design ePortfolio - Part 1
- How to Develop an Instructional Design Portfolio - Part 2
- How to Develop an Instructional Design Portfolio - Part 3
Kary Dunham said: Wordpress is a great solution. It's free and out of the box is ready to go. There are a lot of tutorials out there to help you get started. However it has its drawbacks. For me the primary reason I don't like it is because you don't have as much control or ability to customize your own site as you do if you host the Wordpress blog yourself.
If you're not technically savvy, you could hire a web designer. I realize that the answer seems "duh" obvious. But as a web designer myself, I often see people trying to "do it yourself" and it turns out badly if they don't know what they're doing. Remember your portfolio is part of your brand. It represents YOU and your work. It shouldn't look amateurish. So if you don't have the ability to do it yourself then my advice is to pay a little money up front and hire a professional web designer to do it for you.
As for Wordpress (self-hosted) versus Wordpress.com, I prefer the self-hosted Wordpress as you have more ability to customize the site and make it your own. Something as simple as adding plugins is difficult with the Wordpress.com site. You CAN pay some money to have Wordpress.com host your blog/portfolio for you and allow you to have more ability to customize your site. But in the end, I have found that solution not very cost effective.
It's probably cheaper to host the site yourself as you can literally pay around $65 per year to host a site. Most reputable hosting companies these days will throw in the cost of the domain name registration for free. If you go this route...I do NOT recommend using Godaddy. I shutter at how crappy their service is. Go with HostGator or Bluehost. Loading Wordpress is free and surprisingly easy to do. Again...if you're technically savvy...then I'd suggest going out and finding a premium portfolio Wordpress theme that suits your needs. You can pay between $30 and $60 for the theme. ThemeForest is one such place. You can also just google "Wordpress portfolio themes" and a bunch of premium theme sites will come up.
If you're not technically savvy, then my suggestion is to pay a web designer to customize a theme for you and help you setup your portfolio. In the end...whether you go the self-hosted route or the Wordpress.com route, creating a portfolio using Wordpress is actually a great way to drive traffic to your site. (I hate that phrase...but its true).
Google prefers blog content to static page content. If you host your portfolio using Wordpress AND create an actual blog on the same site, Google will index your site faster than if you use static pages alone on Wordpress and MUCH MUCH faster than a static website. So using Wordpress as your portfolio is a good idea. Incorporating an actual blog within your portfolio is a great idea.
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