Monday, September 22, 2008

In the trenches...

There is no turning back now. I am not one to give up easily, so now I am determined to see what I can make of this endeavor. It's all profit for at least the rest of the year so at least I am out nothing, but I can see the potential. Early retirement is flashing before my eyes. It seemed to boil down to visitor traffic. It appears that anyone could make money from a website almost effortlessly if they had traffic. I am not talking a ton of hits, just around 300 hits a day seemed like the break even point. Now I am talking natural traffic, people that WANT to be on your site, not the forced traffic that some programs promise.

I decided to put on the back burner for a bit, it was holding it's own. I hade tweaked the website to the best of my knowledge by optimizing it with Meta Tags. And since it takes months for a website to reach it's potential, I was getting restless. I decided to put everything I had learned to this point to good use and buy (rent) another domain name. Everything I had learned revolved around building free websites, so I did some research and found that was available. Feeling like an old pro now, I did not hesitate much and bought the domain. My problem with all the websites that promoted free web hosting kind of led you in circles, the offered you a free trial, not a website that was truly free. I felt I could develop a list of free websites and offer some helpful hints to get beginners on the right track. After all, I had spent a year jumping through hoops refining my free website building skills. I had made mental notes of the locations that I found helpful and I felt I had found a niche by organizing it in a manner that did not belittle a beginner.

The hardest part with starting a website is just that; starting. I always recommend putting your ideas down on paper before you actually start building web pages. As a matter of fact, creating an outline (just like you learned in school) works great. Your main page links to inner pages which link to even more pages, so seeing it in outline form helps you with the structure. Carry a notebook (paper) with you and jot down ideas as you think of them. No one I know can just knock out an entire website in one sitting, so be patient with yourself. The best website a beginner could build is an informational website. Choose a topic or hobby that you know the most about. Starting out thinking you can build a 100 page site selling widgets is not going to happen.

I am going to go off on a tangent for a bit and throw out a bit of personal philosophy. Most of the people on the internet and TV that say they make a living on the internet are lying. Yes, there is money to be made, but it happens in nickels and dimes. Almost every turnkey website that is pre-built and stocked with figurines will fail. You cannot buy your way in, you have to pay your dues and learn to do it yourself. You have to be able to update your website(s) as needed, not wait for days and pay someone. It will also not happen overnight and that is why most people give up. As in my prior posts, it may take a year to make your first dollar. But on the brighter side, once the ball starts rolling, it is almost impossible to turn it off. The term "It is always 5 o'clock somewhere" has never been more true than on the internet. Be patient, and people in Europe want to make you money even before you get out of bed!

No comments: