Indie Author Website





June 2022 - July 2022

Live Site is an author website for a local independent romance and thriller author. Angela is a busy author and mom who reached out to me to redesign her WordPress website.

The Problem

Angela has a growing portfolio of work, so I wanted to make sure that her website would showcase all of her series and make it easier for her to update her website as her backlist grows.

Project Overview

The Goal

Redesign Angela's website to showcase all of her work in a way that is intuitive to navigate and make it clear to the user when they were going to be directed to Amazon.

User Research

Competitor Analysis

Assumptions and Research

I conducted competitor analysis by reviewing other romance and thriller author websites. I also reviewed photographer websites to get ideas of how to structure a website that is primarily composed of images.

I've known Angela over 10 years now and she has been seriously writing for longer, so I knew I needed to make her website able to grow with her. I also wanted to make sure that it was going to be easy for her to update whenever she has a pre-order or release.

Pain Points

On her old website, the information about the different series went to the series product page, but since this infographic for the series is just an image it was jarring that it lead to a different site, rather than going to a page where the user could review information about all of her books.

Since the character profiles and the series information were images rather than text, there was no way for a person using a screen reader to have the same experience as a person who was able to read the text on the image.

Because the info graphics were static images, they did resize with the screen, but this caused the text on the images to be harder to read on small screens as the images adjusted to the screen size.



Responsive Design

Site Map

Paper Wireframes

Sketching out wireframes helped me iterate quickly to arrive at the final design


Angela's branding on her old website was already cohesive and used similar colors to other romance and thriller authors: pinks, purples, and darker colors. I kept the hot pink from the footer of her old site as a call to action color and used green to help bring some balance to all of the warm and dark colors.
Her fonts are also consistent across her publications and she was happy with those.

Accessibility Considerations

Provided access to users who are vision impaired through adding alt text to images for screen readers.

Used icons and labeled buttons to help make navigation easier.

Gave images descriptive names to assist with screen readers

Before and After


What I Learned

The redesign of the website makes it clear to visitors that this is an author website rather than something else.
One quote from peer feedback:
"I thought the original website was a movie site. The redesign looks like an author website."

While redesigning I learned that sketching by hand rather than digitally like I did for the Sandy's Sandwich app produces more ideas quickly since I allow myself to be messy as I jot down ideas.

Next Steps

  • Conduct another round of usability studies to validate whether the pain points users experienced have been effectively addressed.
  • Conduct more user research to determine any new areas of need.