Stage One – The Excited
The inspiration comes out of the blue.
One day you’re browsing the Internet, and suddenly you come upon a website that catches your eye.
It describes how you can build your own website. You can have a domain name, hosting service and the first page of your website up in a matter of hours.
You perk up and continue reading. With little technical experience necessary and 10 dollars a month for hosting you can begin your website today. Simply figure out what your website is going to be about and you can start building.
Your mind starts to go wild. Ideas for websites pop in and out of existence. Like a giddy kid in a toy store trying to pick a birthday present, you are overwhelmed with choices.
Finally one sticks. You smile as you think about your perfect website.
You feel like having a website has been your destiny all along. You love to write, you enjoy spending time on the computer, you are tired of your job and want to work from home. Now you can do all these things – and make money!
You get a domain name, a hosting account, a website design application and begin to write and design. In the shower, on the bus, walking the dog, you are thinking about your website. Every free moment is spent on the computer reading about websites and writing content.
You are very excited. And you should be. Starting a website is a very exciting and rewarding experience. Creating something out of nothing, learning new things, dreaming of the future.
Stage Two – The Disappointed
The excitement is great because it turns you into a website making machine. In a matter of days 10 web pages spew from brain to page. And only Galileo peering through his telescope can match your thirst to discover everything you can about HTML and CSS.
Then your website goes live. It is out there and ready for all to see. Spending so much time and effort you finally sigh with relief – the hard part is done. Now come the rewards: fame and money.
Unfortunately, for those who enter this stage, reality does not tip-toe in through the back door. It barges in through the front and sends the door flying.
Your website has been live for three months and you receive an average of 15 visitors a day and made of total of 3 dollars.
All that work, all that effort, the nights spent in front of the computer writing and writing. The hours spent agonizing over the layout and design of your website. The mental acrobatics performed to understand CSS. For what? 15 visitors and 3 dollars?
It’s just too disappointing to continue. You cannot build up the energy to write another page or to read another word about backlinks.
This is the point where most websites die. People give up and move on with their lives, believing that the website business is rigged and they have been swindled.
Sadly most new website owners quit, but there are still lots that survive this stage. They wade through the disappointment and keep moving forward. These are the fortunate ones who make it to the next and most important stage.
Stage Three – The Realist
Everybody goes through the first two stages, but only some make it to the third stage. The disappointment stage weeds out those without the necessary self-determination and those without belief in their websites.
What remains are those who realize that having a successful website is a lot of work and takes time. You need to work day by day, constantly adding content and marketing. And you must do this without expecting instant reward.
The Internet is not a magical place where leprechauns skip around leaving pots of gold for you to scoop up. Creating a successful website is no different then any other business.
There are start-up costs, there is competition and failure is always around the corner. Just like everything else that promises big rewards, it takes hard work and time.
The realist is the website owner who does not focus on checking their stats everyday and wonder why there are only 15 visitors and 3 dollars.
The realist turns their focus on creating a website with good content. The realist does not only add good content to their website, they also delete poor or outdated content.
The realist works on creating a website that provides a service or product that people want. The realist is building a business. The realist is patient.
What Stage Are You In?
If you are in the excitement stage then I hope by making you aware of the disappointment stage, the upcoming blow will be less shocking when it arrives.
At least now you know what’s coming so you will not be too surprised. You will not be hit on the backside. You can prepare yourself for it and try to minimize its impact to your psyche. Reality is coming – be ready for it.
Sorry if you are in stage two, but everybody has to go through it at least once. Fortunately by believing in yourself and your website this stage can be surpassed.
There is nothing wrong with taking a little break and re-analyzing your strategy, but the most important thing is that you keep going. Keep learning and improving. Do not quit.
Obviously stage three is the best one to be in. Not only did you successfully make it through the dreaded stage two, but you are well on your way toward success. Now you are creating quality content and you have the patience required to make the website of your dreams.
You can probably relate to Roman’s article in some way. I definitely spent some time in stage 2, but I also want to point out that how you label each stage makes a difference.
I spent some time in what Roman calls “The Disappointed Stage”, but I don’t ever recall feeling disappointed. If I did, I don’t think the feeling lasted very long.
I knew I was doing something wrong, but I also enjoyed the journey while I studied others who were succeeding. This forced me to reflect on my mistakes and how to adjust.
So if you find yourself in stage 2, the big question is, How are you dealing with it, and are you mentally prepared to get through it?
If you are disappointed, ask yourself why. Did you expect to start making money right away? Did you assume mounds of people were just going to flock to your site once you launched it? Are you comparing your results to someone else?
Your mental toughness and expectations definitely play a huge role in how you handle any bumps along the way. It’s OK to feel disappointed, but what’s more important is how you handle it and what you do next!
Do you agree with Roman? Do you think every successful website owner must go through every phase? Do you feel that you skipped the “Disappointed Phase”, or perhaps you’d like to call it something else? Have you discovered any other phases along the way?