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9+ Handy Tools to Help You Create a Winning Freelancing Portfolio

by Laura Spencer

on August 5, 2013

in Marketing

Learn how to earn $125 or more per hour as a freelancer - Free Test Drive

Your freelancing website is an important part of your freelancing marketing strategy. At a minimum, it should contain an About page, your freelancing blog, and your portfolio.

Some freelancers don’t have time to set up a freelancing website though. Fortunately, there are some easy-to-use tools available online to help you create a portfolio. You can also link to these tools from your freelancing website if your website doesn’t include a portfolio page.

Many of these tools have other benefits such as a community, social aspects, or a freelance marketplace. So you may choose to use these tools even if your freelancing site already has a portfolio page. Or you may just want to create an archive of everything that you’ve done.

In this post, I’ll share over nine great tools that you can use to create an online portfolio.

Freelancing Portfolio Creation Tools

How’s your freelancing portfolio coming along?

For many freelancing specialties, it’s important to be able to show prospective clients samples of your past work. That’s where your portfolio comes in. A strong portfolio can be the deciding factor in whether you get the job.

Plus, many portfolio tools are available for free or at very little cost.

In alphabetical order, here are over nine tools that can help you create a winning portfolio:

  1. Behance. This is one of the better-known portfolio tools for graphic designers, artists, and photographers. It was started in 2006 and has a huge audience. Visitors can easily filter through images to find what they are looking for. The popular site also includes a job board that lists creative opportunities for both freelancers and those looking for traditional employment.
  2. Carbonmade. This is a good tool for artists, designers, and photographers. This tool is easy to use and creates an attractive portfolio. In addition to your portfolio, you can also create an About page and add contact information. The number of images you can include in your portfolio and the features you get depends on whether you choose the free version or the paid version of the tool.
  3. Contently. This tool is designed for freelance journalists and bloggers. The site has a dual purpose. Not only does it provide a free portfolio to freelance writers, it also matches freelance writers to the publications that need them through the Contently marketplace. It is especially easy for writers to add samples of their online work, although .pdf samples can be added as well.
  4. Clippings.me. This highly acclaimed tool for freelance writers has a free version and a PRO Package. Writers can use this tool to create an elegant portfolio of their published work. The writer can customize the portfolio to create their own unique look. There’s also a public directory of writers organized by specialty at the site that can give writers additional exposure.
  5. Dunked. This brand new portfolio-building site has some great features (such as drag and drop) that make it easy to create a visually appealing portfolio. Dunked is particularly well suited for freelancers who create visual samples such as designers, graphic artists, and photographers. A nice feature of Dunked is that their portfolio templates works on mobile devices as well as desktop machines.
  6. Flavors. This another tool for creative freelancers. While the tool works well for designers and photographers, many musicians also have portfolios here, complete with YouTube or other video links to their performances. There is a free version and a paid version with more functionality. The community link features the portfolios of many Flavors users. The completely custom URL is a nice feature.
  7. LinkedIn Portfolio Tool. One of the recent additions to LinkedIn was the ability to add work samples, allowing users to create a virtual portfolio right on LinkedIn. The convenience here is that the rest of your LinkedIn profile is right there with all of the social networking benefits. If you have a strong LinkedIn profile this is worth considering.
  8. PortfolioBox. This is another tool that is well-suited to those freelancers who have visual samples of their work, especially photographers and designers. There is a free version, which allows you to display up to 50 images. For more images and features, you will need one of the paid versions. The E-Commerce version allows you to use the site like an online store and sell images through the site.
  9. Pressfolios. This is a new site intended for all varieties of professional writers. It creates an attractive archive of your published work. There is also room for a bio and links to your social media accounts. The site is fairly new and still in beta testing, so you will have to sign up for the wait list to use this tool. It looks promising, though.
  10. Bonus Tool: Viewbook. Use this tool to display your portfolio online. It’s great for photographers and others who need to display images. The templates are easy to use and you can easily include a CV or Bio. Viewbook portfolios are also compatible with the iPad and iPhone. There are two paid levels of this tool and a 30-day free trial was available at the time of publication.

Why Do I Need My Own Freelancing Website?

With all of these wonderful options, you may wonder why you need your own website. The truth is that you could probably make do with one or more of these sites for a while–maybe even a long time. But you’d be in trouble if the site that was hosting your portfolio suddenly went out of business.

Ultimately, you’ll want complete control of your freelancer site. That means hosting your website, including your portfolio, on a domain that you own.

Your Turn

Do you use an online portfolio tool? Tell us which one and explain why you like it.

Learn how to earn $125 or more per hour as a freelancer - Free Test Drive

About Laura Spencer

Laura Spencer is a freelance writer from North Central Texas with over 20 years of professional business writing experience. If you liked this post, then you may also enjoy LauraĆ¢??s blog about her freelance writing experiences, WritingThoughts. Laura is also on Google+.