URL Tips for Writers and Authors

Here’s a tip for every person who owns a web site, especially authors and writes. Never use a hyphen in your URL (that’s the www._____.com) unless it’s strictly   used as “secondary site” to point search engines to and not used in any of your   publicity materials. If your name is already taken add on a phrase or name such  as www.greatbooksbymyfirstnamelastname.com.

In my magazine, HopeKeepers, we featured an article and at the end of the article gave the author’s bio and web site. Unfortunately, her web site was www.myfirstname-mylastname.com.

When the paragraph was justified, unfortunately her bio appeared to say:

Visit her web site at www.myfirstname
  mylastname.com for updated readings.

Now… the hyphen was actually in the correct place, but a reader believed the hyphen was there because of the page break (makes sense, someone on my staff should have caught that!) and she typed in the URL www.myfirstnamemylastname.com  and bought one of the books from the web page, believing it to be Christian material. Needless to say, this was not our writer’s web site.

I received an email from the reader, who visited the author’s web site believing
it to be Christian material, bought the book and started reading. She was then
appalled that the woman who “supposedly had written for our Christian audience
had written a filthy, nearly-pornographic book.” Thankfully, I discovered the
error, but I wondered about the many times this must happen when people use a
hyphen in their name and it’s forgotten by the time people get to their computer.

Another reason is that as an editor and someone who is looking for authors who may be interested in being chat guests for our web site community, it’s easier for me to locate you. When
I type in your name to a search engine I am going to get nearly ever place online that sells your book. The first place I always try to locate an author is by typing
his or her name into the URL.


Lisa and Joel Copen have a variety of experience in founding a nonprofit that receieves over 80,000 visitors per month, music and sound editing, web design, and book marketing and publishing. They look forward to your ideas to make the series of ebooks on book promotion a practical tool to help you sell more books!

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