Mistakes People Make With Creating Websites
I have been guiding people to create their own websites for years and time and time again the same mistakes are made over and over again.
Read this so you don't fall into the common online traps that end in failure.
Free Web Hosting
I know you may feel like you shouldn't have to pay for a website, and quite honestly you don't have to. There are free places like Blogger and Weebly where you can create a site quickly and easily.
The problem with that is most people build websites today for money, and if you want the search engines and other people to take your site seriously you need your own domain name (yoursite.com).
The good news is, the total yearly cost to host an average website is $5-$10/month -- that's two trips to Starbucks and definitely worth the investment.
Can you imagine starting an offline business for such a small amount of money? Websites have such low overhead costs, but the income potential is tremendous.
Also, free websites have major disadvantages. You cannot add certain functionality that you may want (social networks, communities, etc.) and your site could be removed at any time for any reason.
The truth is, you don't own your site when you use free hosting.
There's no reason NOT to pay for a website today. Don't make the mistake that so many of my readers make and start out with a free host and then decide to move later.
You will regret it because it's a pain to move a site to another domain. Then you have to worry about losing any search engine rankings you may have had if your site location (domain) changes.
Be smart. Register a domain and host your site.
People won't just flock to your site because you have a good idea. There are a lot of websites out here today that are built upon "great ideas."
It takes a lot of work to generate traffic to a website.
So before you begin, you need to identify who you want to target. Your site should fulfill a need to a specific group of people -- in other words you need to define a niche.
The more you define your niche, the easier it will be to attract a targeted group of people that you can sell products to.
Also, the more you know about your audience, the easier it will be to write content they want to read.
So before you create your website, take some time to think about who you are going to target and make sure your website fulfills a specific need.
Make sure you watch the video below where I discuss how content niche websites make money, but most importantly, the mistakes people make with keyword research.
Too Blog Focused
Because WordPress is so popular, a lot of people just choose this option to build their sites, and throw up a bunch of "newsy" content organized by date -- like an online newspaper.
That's not always the best way to organize a website.
Certain kinds of sites need to be arranged in a specific fashion. For example, this site is tutorial based and I want key articles to be found easily everytime you come here.
Can you imagine if it was just a bunch of articles posted by date in different categories like an entertainment blog?
It would be amazingly difficult to teach people how to build their sites. Much of the important information would get buried.
Not every site should be in a blog format and the good thing is WordPress is flexible enough that you can arrange your site so the information is created in silos to help people navigate.
If you watch my WordPress tutorial video I will illustrate this.
Ignoring The Business Aspect
You may not think you're creating a business, but the minute you step out and decide you want to make money online, you are starting a business.
Businesses require you to understand some basic principles like supply and demand.
As I already mentioned, you need to determine what people in your niche want and give it to them. The better your site accomplishes this task, the more engaged your visitors will be and the more you will make.
Starting With a Product
Right now, no one knows who you are. You have no brand awareness. People aren't searching for you in Google, so how are they going to discover your website?
Remember, people search for information. They search for questions, problems, or they go directly to brand name stores (Overstock, Amazon, etc.)
Knowing that, how do you build exposure for your own product?
First of all, unless you have a bunch of money to spend on advertising, it's better to start with a content website and then sell products after you've established a following.
Brian Clark of Copyblogger is an excellent example of this. He started out by just providing copywriting tips to bloggers.
Once his blog developed a readership, he took the popular needs of his visitors and developed relevant products like WordPress themes and other tools that solved the problems of his readers.
That's the way you sell products online when you have not developed any brand awareness for yourself or your site. It's much easier to start out with a content, niche site because the search engines love content.
On the flip side, it's much harder to draw traffic to an unknown product site simply because how people search the Internet.
Start by building content that meets the needs of your readers and go from there. I show you how to do this in my book Niche Website Success.
I wrote a more in-depth article on this topic here.
If you liked this, please share. Thanks!