Why Developers should Design Niche Portfolio Sites for Themselves
Your developer portfolio site needs to impress prospects and show them what you’re capable of. But if you build a site that only reflects your personal tastes or showcases the more cutting edge things you can do with code, prospects might have a hard time seeing themselves in what you do.
This is one of the reasons why you niche down in the first place. Focusing on specific industries, locations, or other demographics enables you to make more money, have better client relationships, and be more successful because you become a specialist instead of just a Jack of all trades.
That’s why you should also consider designing a niche portfolio site for your business.
You actually leave a lot of money on the table if you don’t market to a specific kind of client or build your site to directly appeal to them. Let me explain:
In Scenario #1:
- You build your portfolio site for your WordPress development services. All the content is generically written and images chosen so you can reach as many people as possible.
- This means you’ll probably rank for broad and competitive search terms like “hire a WordPress developer” and “web development services”.
- At the end of the day, you’ll end up doing most of the work trying to find and market yourself to prospects since your site will be impossible to find in search results.
In Scenario #2:
- You build either two portfolio sites or two portfolio pages within the same site to reflect your target niches. One is built for wellness industry clients and the other is built for coaches and consultants.
- You have a better chance of ranking at the top of search results for specific keywords like “websites for coaches” or “WordPress development services for consultants”. The same goes for a site with a single niche.
- In addition, your portfolio is nicely organized for prospects to sift through while also being perfectly targeted to them.
This might sound like it requires extra time and money to build, but you’d be surprised.
Niche portfolio sites aren’t that difficult to create with solutions like BeTheme, each pre-built website carefully designed for a specific niche. All you have to do is customize the content and images for your business and add portfolio examples to it.
Let’s look at some real-world examples of web developers and studios that have taken this approach as well as some BeTheme pre-built sites you can use to style your niche-looking site.
1. Developer portfolios for the beauty industry
Websites for beauty businesses — like hair and nail salons as well as spas — need to accomplish a couple things. First, they need to put customers at ease so they begin to trust that the people behind the site will deliver their services professionally. Second, they need to convey a certain type of luxury. Even if the services aren’t pricey, customers want to feel pampered.
The website for Salon Web Studio takes these qualities and uses them to create an attractive, welcoming, and professional homepage. And, as a bonus, the design studio includes relevant images that beauty professionals can relate to:
To recreate something like this for your own site, you could use BeHairdresser and customize the vibe for your own business:
2. Developer portfolios for health and wellness
Websites for health and wellness providers are all about building trust. Whether it’s for the office of a psychiatrist or for a wellness clinic and retreat, the overall mood needs to be calm and professional while giving enough space to former clients/participants to speak to the experience. It’s the best way to convince someone to pay for a high-end service such as these (the same could be said for web development services).
The niche portfolio website for Modern Wellness Design is styled similarly to these kinds of websites. Notice how effectively they’ve designed their client testimonials, too:
If you want to infuse your site with a sense of calm and start building trust with health and wellness business prospects, use the BeClinic pre-built site to do this:
3. Developer portfolios for trainers and coaches
Websites for trainers and coaches are all about power and strength. That’s why you often see big, all-capped lettering as well as inspiring images of people in motion, be they trainers working out or coaches delivering high-profile speeches. With these websites, there can be no doubt who is in charge, which means you have to be okay with showing your face, too.
Digital agency Startup Active is a beautiful example of this, blending the necessary elements of a developer’s portfolio site with the style of a trainer or coach:
Building something like this for your own site isn’t too difficult with the assistance of the BePersonalTrainer pre-built site:
4. Developer portfolios for nonprofits and charities
Websites for nonprofits and charities put the focus on the people and communities they serve. They use their content to bring attention to important matters, often using simple copy and striking imagery to quickly convey what’s happening. Strongly designed CTAs also point donors, volunteers, and other humanitarians quickly and clearly to points of the site where they can participate or sign up.
As a WordPress developer, you’ll want your niche portfolio sites for nonprofits and charities to take a similar approach. You can see an example of this on the Elevation agency website:
And you can build your own using the BeCharity pre-built site:
5. Developer portfolios for financial services
Financial services websites were once very buttoned-up in terms of design and content. But recently the industry has begun to shift towards fintech solutions as opposed to just in-person financial services. As a result, these niche sites often go with a tech-centric look to reflect the solution itself.
AdvisorWebsites has taken a fintech-like approach with this illustrative portfolio site:
Whether you want your own developer portfolio to be illustrated or to contain photos of real people, BeLoans can help you accomplish whatever you need:
6. Developer portfolios for fashion and retail
Websites for those in the fashion and retail space have a number of options depending on what they’re ultimately “selling”. Fashion websites, for instance, will likely shine a light on how their styles look on real people. Retailers, on the other hand, may prefer to show off the products. Ultimately, it boils down to what the consumers will be the most attracted to.
Diffusion Digital actually uses both of these kinds of imagery on the homepage of its site. The slide you see below shows off handcrafted jewelry, but the next slide depicts models walking on a catwalk. This enables the agency to portray its multi-niche focus nicely:
With BeStore, you can design a niche portfolio site that caters to one or both of these types of audiences:
7. Developer portfolios with location-specific niches
Many business owners decide it’s worthwhile to serve only their local community. And for places that have strong visual identities (like the cities of New York or Miami), it’s not uncommon to find local business websites that reflect this local pride, be it through a color palette or imagery.
Bushwick Design, for instance, pays homage to its Brooklyn, New York location with various shots of the city scattered throughout the site:
Realistically, you could use any Be site that has a strong location component, but I think that BeCityHall would be the easiest to start with if you want it to establish a similar sense of place as Bushwick Design:
Will you be designing niche portfolio sites for your business?
Most of the examples above show you how to create niche portfolio sites for just one niche. But if you have more than one specialty, remember that you can easily build out multiple portfolio pages or sites with BeTheme alone.
Remember: This is about attracting and impressing prospects to the point where they want to reach out and take the next step with you. By designing something that they feel comfortable with and would want for their own site, you can more effectively do that.