Creating a digital portfolio of your best work to show prospective employers increases your chances of landing your next job, regardless of your occupation. Learn how to create a digital portfolio that includes a professional, engaging website showcasing your best work.
What Exactly Is a Digital Portfolio?
A digital portfolio is an online collection of your work experience, education, skills, work samples, and honors that you can use to get work from potential employers and recruiters. When you apply for a job, your portfolio contains your best work samples and serves as an additional source of information for hiring managers. Many professionals, including graphic designers, photographers, illustrators, and writers, use digital portfolios.
What to Include in a Digital Portfolio
What you include in your online portfolio website is determined by the nature of your work. Creating a design portfolio, for example, is not the same as creating a website for copywriting. Generally, job seekers of all types include the following items:
1. About me: This section provides a brief overview of your background and previous work. Put this biography in paragraph form on your home page to introduce yourself and your work experience to potential clients.
2. Accolades: Any honors, awards, grants, or other professional recognition you may have received as a result of your work are included here.
3. Contact information: You can include a link to your contact information or a contact form on your website for potential employers to fill out.
4. Résumé: Include a list of your previous employment experiences. Include a list of your previous work, a downloadable résumé, or both.
5. Skills: While your skills can be listed on your résumé, if your profession requires specific job-related skills (such as proficiency in specific software), you can create a separate section to list your relevant expertise.
6. Work samples: The main draw of your portfolio site is the work samples, which allow recruiters to see your creative process. This section may include writing samples, case studies, artwork, or photography, depending on your profession. Include any collaborators with whom you've worked on specific projects.
How to Create a Digital Portfolio
Making a professional website is a simple and enjoyable task that can help you land your next job. To create your digital portfolio, follow these steps:
1. Make use of a website builder. If you have little experience creating a website from scratch, consider using an online portfolio template or a beginner-friendly website builder. These web design tools provide extensive multimedia customization and can save you a significant amount of time when creating your portfolio.
2. Determine your layout. You want a simple user experience for your website design. Create a visually appealing portfolio page layout that reflects your style, complete with eye-catching fonts, colors, and simple headings designed for easy scrolling and clicking.
3. Select your content. A homepage with an About Me section and clickable headers or a table of contents should be included in your portfolio content. Include sections for your work history, downloadable résumé, best work samples, awards, and a contact page.
4. Make use of search engine optimization (SEO). Use industry keywords in your content to increase the likelihood that people will find your digital portfolio online. Create an HTML-based website so that viewers can interact with your portfolio from a variety of apps and web readers. Discover more about SEO strategy.
5. Include a link to your social media accounts. Link your digital portfolio to your social media accounts once you've completed it to increase your online visibility. You may want to set up professional (rather than personal) social media accounts to promote your work to new clients.
6. Provide links to job search engines. Connect your digital portfolio to online job search websites and accounts to broaden your job search.
7. Make frequent updates. Creating new content for your digital portfolio and related social media accounts on a regular basis allows you to stay current with current trends in your field, eliminates outdated content after a long period of time, and increases user engagement.