When it comes to designing a website and planning an online presence, one of the last places most of us focus is our bio. More often than not, bios become quickly thrown together afterthoughts that are commonly stiff and uncommunicative.

This oversight is a big missed opportunity. For the majority of websites, your bio (aka your 'About” page) gets a lot of traffic. Just throwing some words up is like walking into a prospect meeting chewing a big wad of Double Bubble. The fella shaking your hand might take the time to get to know you, but you can kiss a good first impression goodbye.

On the flip side, a well-crafted bio is the perfect handshake. It introduces you to prospects and clients with a friendly explanation of your qualifications. It gives them an insight into what it's like to work with you. And, it shows off a little of what makes you human. Let's face it. Folks want to work with people they feel like they know. They don’t want to be an account number. They want to be treated like an individual.

The 3 Elements of a Good Bio

Who You Are: You want to immediately give your reader your name. If you're writing in the third person, use your name right away. If you're writing in the first person, put your name at the top of your bio. In addition, tell them what role you fill. Share any credentials you have. This could include your education, relevant work history, awards won and number of years in the industry.

How You Work: What do you stand for? Why do you do what you do? What business practices do you believe in? While this isn't a place to bare your soul completely, it is definitely the place to tell your customers and prospects exactly what kind of service they can expect.

What Makes You Tick: No one works 24/7. (At least we certainly hope not.) Share a bit about your passions. Tell folks where you come from and what you like to do with your free time. Let them in. It doesn't have to be a lot. But a small detail about your dog or a snippet about your wife allows them to know you a bit better.

Additional Bio Tips

Personality - Some of us are no-nonsense gals and others are proud dads. You might be a witty jokester from time to time or a warm and welcoming guy. By structuring the cadence of your sentences after the way you speak, you can communicate your personality.

SPELLCHECK – Spellcheck your bio. Better yet, have someone else spellcheck your bio. You may make a small typo here or there in an email or blog post. That’s normal. We all make mistakes. However, your bio’s a place typos aren’t acceptable. As a static document, you definitely have the time to draft and edit.

Consider Getting Help - Chances are you're an expert in something other than writing. Even if you are a writer by trade, writing your own bio can be difficult. Consider asking a professional for help. If you work with a good writer, they'll not only take time to get to know you, they'll work with you to tweak your bio so it's exactly what you want.