I look at a lot of About pages on artist and designer websites, and there’s one big problem that I see over and over again. Many people seem to think that an About page and a bio are the same thing. I’m here to tell you that they’re not the same, and I’m going to explain why this is a big mistake to make.
What’s the difference between an About page and a bio?
Writing a bio is a lot like writing a résumé. A bio usually lists the highlights of your career, possibly with some details and examples. It is a summary of your greatest accomplishments and contains a lot of facts.
An About page, on the other hand, should be much more than a list of accomplishments. Why? Because, ironically, an About page is really not about you at all. It is about your reader. The purpose of an About page is to get your potential clients or customers to learn more about your work and how you can help them.
So what should I include in my About page?
It’s a good idea to start with your full name and a nice photo that shows your face well. This helps to build a relationship with your readers. Remember, this is the place where you make your introduction to your clients, so think about how you would introduce yourself in real life.
Next, it’s time to share your story. This is where you describe your journey in a way that inspires your readers and highlights your accomplishments. But remember, the focus should be to show your readers how you can help them. Try to write about yourself in a way that connects back to your readers and what they might need.
The language you choose for your About page is important for two reasons. First, you want to think about keywords, or search engine optimization (SEO). These are the words that will help search engines to find your page, so think about what your potential clients might be searching for and try to use those words. You also want to use powerful language to make yourself and your work sound as good as possible. You can do this by using action verbs and compelling adjectives in your description.
Finally, you want to include your contact info or social media links so that your readers know how to follow you or contact you with questions. Make it as easy as you can for them to take the next step in building a relationship with you. Another way to do that is with a call to action (CTA). At the bottom of your page, tell your readers what you’d like them to do next!
What should I avoid when writing my About page?
Next, let’s talk about what not to do. My number one piece of advice is to keep it simple. I see a lot of About pages that are way too complicated and difficult to understand, even ones written by native speakers. Remember, if it’s too hard to read, your potential clients will probably just go somewhere else. So focus on being clear, not complex. I often suggest that my clients write like they speak because this is usually easier to understand. Try saying what you want to say aloud, and then write it! Or try reading what you’ve written aloud to see if it sounds good. Simple is always better.
However, simple does not mean general. Another problem I see a lot is that people write really general statements on their About pages. (For example, “I studied a lot of important things in my design program.” Like what? This is boring!) Specific details are much more interesting! Give examples when you can so it’s easy to understand what you’re talking about.
The third mistake to avoid is calling your About page something else. Everyone knows what an About page is and that’s what they’ll be looking for. Don’t make it harder for them by using a different name for this page.
The last kind of mistake you want to avoid is – you guessed it – English mistakes! Your About page is your first impression to your potential clients, so you want it to be your best. Take the time to be sure your spelling and grammar are correct. I suggest using an app like Grammarly or working with an English coach to be sure your page is free from mistakes.
I need more help!
Now that I’ve shared some tips for writing a great About page, I’d like to hear from you! Do you still have questions? Ask me in the comments or send me an email!
You can also download my free guide: How to write a great About page (10 tips for non-native English speakers). You can use it to be sure you’ve covered all the things I described above.
If you want to get feedback from an English coach on your About page, you can also schedule a free trial lesson so we can talk about what you need and how I can help!