Authors of all kinds today need an excellent website to succeed. It's an axiom in the book publicity world and is an essential part of every good book marketing plan. A blog is also beneficial as an add-on to the website. The site acts as an online information hub about you and your books for fans, the media, and reviewers. The blog is updated more often and carries more timely information or perspectives. You can upload your author bio, images, book excerpts, links to media coverage, appearance schedule, and much more to your website. When it's well done, it will encourage site visitors to learn more and become fans.
Because author websites can help sell books, make sure to feature your book cover(s) on the home page and provide retail links where people can order. If you can, show at least a thumbnail of the book cover, with buying links on every web page. Offer all available modes of purchasing the book —hardcover, paperback, ebook, audiobook, etc. Your site needs an About page as well. On it, you can include your book's Table of Contents (for non-fiction), sample chapters, testimonials, and book synopsis. Make sure to let people know how they can purchase copies in bulk. Small booksellers or clubs may want to buy copies.
If you plan to pursue media coverage (which is an excellent idea), have a Media page with press releases, your photo, and book covers available for downloads. Include the name and information for a media contact or telephone number (it can be your own). If you have a publicist, list their contact information also. Once media coverage of you and your book starts, add media links and logo images. Also, update your author bio with "as seen on" or "featured in." Make your .pdf files of media coverage or recordings of your interviews because links sometimes expire, and you don't want to lose them.
It's excellent to use your website to make permanent connections with your fans. Ask site visitors to sign up for a newsletter or to follow your blog. Don't make it difficult to sign up. Request the only first name and email; any more, and you may discourage people from registering. As you may have heard, an email list can be an author's most effective marketing tool. When you write your email newsletter, you can include a range of information for your fans. Good examples include reasons you decided to become a writer, your work's inspirations, information about your life and travel, relevant news, and trivia.