I recently posted a thread in my forum where I asked the members to give advice to people who are new to building websites and making money online.
I received a lot of insightful comments, and quickly noticed a common theme among the replies.
There was a lot of emphasis on planning and enjoyment — two things that are often ignored by people just starting out.
I mention this a lot, but I’ll say it again. People don’t just stumble upon websites or blogs like they do a store on a street (unless they’re using StumbleUpon.com.) 🙂
So while you may have a great idea for something, you have to consider how people will find you. And not just any people, but people who will be interested and/or need what you have to offer.
One of the most common reasons people fail is they don’t put a lot of research into their ideas. Coming up with a great idea is an obvious first step, but execution is the most important one.
You really have to educate yourself on how people use/surf the web and what techniques are available to draw traffic to your site. A lot of people believe their great idea is enough to funnel traffic to their site, but it doesn’t work that way.
Where would I be if I didn’t love what I do?
Well for starters, I’d probably still be at my 9 to 5 job.
The love for this business is what kept me going all these years. I haven’t always had high-trafficked websites, and my affiliate checks used to have fewer numbers on the left side of the decimal. 😉
I spent many frustrating days and nights scratching my head over code, or trying to figure out how to FTP the right PHP so my URL wouldn’t be 403. (Yes, it rhymes.) 😀
But in the end, I’ve always found this process rewarding. There’s nothing like that sense of accomplishment when I learn something new, plus it keeps me wanting to learn more. My love for writing and teaching others has also made the ride fun.
So that’s the attitude you have to have about this or you are doomed to fail. Enjoyment comes first and then the money. Not the other way around. You have to find something about this process that will keep you motivated through the challenging times.
A lady once told me “If my site would just make some money, I would probably enjoy this more.” But the real trick is you have to enjoy it enough to stick around long enough for your site to make money.
And let me be honest. Some of you must come to the harsh realization that this may not be for you. The desire to make a lot of money and be successful is a start, but the enjoyment is what keeps you going when the going gets tough. People who make a lot of money whether it be online or off, typically enjoy what they do.
Are there days when I feel totally uninspired and uncreative? Absolutely. But those moments don’t usually last long and are often due to external situations not related to this business. So you may have to ask yourself. Am I really enjoying this or am I enjoying the idea of financial independence and financial security more?
I’ll let you ponder that one for a minute. 😉
If you remember nothing about what it takes to succeed online remember two things: planning and enjoyment. These two alone will take you very far out here.
And planning should go beyond “I want to make money and I want my site to have X, Y and Z.” In fact, that’s not planning. It’s a goal.
Research your market. Find out what people in your niche need and want. What kind of problems can you help them solve? Look for forums in your potential niche and keep an eye out for recurring topics. Check out existing websites and blogs and look for gaps and areas of opportunity. Hone your writing skills and study up on the various ways to market your website.
Don’t forget to read the forum thread. There’s some great advice from people who have been there/done that.
Feel free to add your own advice and lessons. And if you’re a newbie, absorb the information like a sponge! You are fortunate to get this kind of advice that a lot of us didn’t have when we started.