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Articles: So you want to create a website?

by Werner Coetzee

If I had a dollar every time someone said they wanted to build a website, but didn’t know where to begin, I would be… well, rich. The problem doesn’t seem to be the actual creation of the site, but more the “what should it be about” aspect. Please note that, I am not in any way referring to e-commerce sites, corporate sites or any commercial sites, but purely about interest and general sites.

The problem lies in the fact that the essence of site creation has moved radically from where it started as an information and entertainment medium, it has changed to almost the opposite and in some cases even to complete rubbish.

So, before you even think of getting your little spot on the web, what should you be sure of, know and be aware of. What are the things that will make my site worthwhile and an asset to the web? What should I create to be able to cash in and earn some revenue for my days and months of hard work? Well, I would like to propose some basic ideas.

Firstly, I firmly believe that any author (website creator) should concentrate on things they know about or at least very familiar with. There would be absolutely no point for me to create a site on nuclear fusion (in fact starting would be a problem). You have to start with something that you can inform and/or entertain with, if you want your visitors to return at some stage. Use this wonderful platform to share your views and express yourself to the world. Not many other mediums allow this to such a massive extent. Share yourself!

The next important aspect, if you do want your site to really draw some attention on a ongoing basis, would be to ensure that the content on your site is as timeless as possible. I recently helped my mom create a site ( to host her recipes and it is an excellent example of a site that is timeless. Recipes do not get old. The information on your site, unless you want to constantly update it, should not get old either and a great idea would be to choose a topic for your site, where the information never ages. Jokes, photos, good articles etc. are all great examples of non-ageing content. Blogs are great for easy and quick uploading but still the material needs to be timeless as far as possible.

Try to be original. Easier said than done, I know, but try to not to start yet another site featuring the same old jokes. Not only will you never be able to ever monetize your site (earn revenue from it), but it would just be a copy of another person’s expression. Something as simple as creating a site on a smaller section of an existing site could be a great idea. What about a site dedicated to jokes about plumbers (if you really have to do a joke site). Be original not only in what you create, but what you represent as well.

Start small. I do not want to be the bearer of bad news, but you are not going to start a Google in the next year. Try to ensure that whatever you base your site on, is within your financial ambit and time sphere. You do not want to overextend yourself and leave the site halfway complete, by the time you realize that you have lost interest. It is always easier to add to a completed site and see it grow even bigger. Set realistic goals and try to achieve them within a specific period. Planning is critical and if you do it correctly you will never have to have those horrible “under construction’ pages on your site.

Lastly, and probably most importantly of all, think about how you are going to attract visitors, hopefully repeatedly, to ensure that you can earn revenue from your hard work. If you are thinking about making use of Affiliate Programs or programs like Google’s Adsense, always remember that they will require visitors. Visitors in return require a reason to visit in the first place and secondly to come back again and again. The only way you are going to ensure any form of revenue is by making sure your site is attractive, informative and generally a great place to visit.

In a perfect world, all sites would be as I described above, but sadly that is not the case. The good news is that due to the fact that more than 50% of sites are not that great, you are already halfway there, without even starting. Best of luck and I look forward to visiting your great site soon!

About the Author

Werner Coetzee

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