Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Just like clockwork.. not

Buildfree.org actually went together quicker and easier than expected. It seems I spent so much time building free websites myself, that I had a wealth of information tucked away. It was kind of like writing this blog, once I got going, the site kind of built itself. Buildfree.org also turned out to be a website in the right place at the right time. It seems that others were going through the same frustration I was. They were looking for a no frills website that helped them build a free website, period. Within 6 months, buildfree.org was getting 600 visitors a day. The site was living proof that a regular guy with no computer skills or website training can develop a succesful website. I started putting a few of my money-making affiliate programs on the pages, and now buildfree.org was on the gravy train!

I am going to jump ahead as the next year or so was for the most part uninteresting. I am not going to say it was uneventful though, as being new at web building, things happened I was not expecting. I can only say that ther are a lot of small things that caused day-to-day stress. I had an issue with web.com, where they claimed I was using 30 gig of bandwith a month all of a sudden. That would be like getting 100,000 hits a day for as small as my site was. I was on the phone about every day for a week and had to pay approximately $50 in penalties just to keep my sites live. The all of a sudden it just quit, no explanation, no refunds, strike one. Then I started having a problem publishing my sites; everything would go ok until the very end of the publishing process, the it would just keep saying "publishing website" and the scrool bars would take 2-3 minutes to publish. Web.com said it was because of my FrontPage - the same program I had been using for a year. Strike two. Then several times, both sites went down for hours at a time. They blamed it on migrating servers, and they would be more reliable and I would be happier blah, blah, blah. Strike 3.

So whether I wanted to or not, I was going to learn how to move my websites to a different web host. In theory it is very simple. Purchase hosting at your desired location, furnish your domain name you want to use and they give you the "DNS settings." You then log into your domain name administration and change the DNS setting to point to the new host. I decided to leave my domain names at web.com and just move the hosting. I also chose to move jimmohr.com first to the new web host. They do warn you that it may take 24 to 72 hours to propagate across the internet. I found out that that means your site will be down for 1-3 days! It is weird too, sometimes it will be up, then down, up, down. It is a helpless feeling, I was sure I had done something wrong. You really have to monitor it close too, as soon as you see a default page on your website, you have to publish your website ASAP. In 2 days plus, jimmohr.com was back up. I calmed down for a couple days, then repeated the steps with buildfree.org. I took almost 2 days to complete the process.

I can see why people give up on making their internet fortune. I had basically been working on this (whatever you want to call it) for almost 2 years, had my share of headaches, and my monthly earnings were about $100 a month. It worked out out to about $1 an hour. What I did see is constant growth. And at this point, I really just can't quit, everything is paying for itself. I guess I need a couple more websites...