Entireweb Newsletter * March 3, 2009 * ISSUE #523
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The Curse of the Abandoned Website and Ten Things You Can Do To Avoid It
Ideas are one thing, putting them into action is another thing entirely.
You find out that many people come up with ideas for websites that they never get round to executing. Some never get as far as ordering a website hosting service, while others do substantially better by getting a website up but fall victim to one factor or the other and later abandon the same website that they have invested their money and efforts in. This is a very bad habit and even the most focused of individuals tends to fall victim to this habit at one time or the other in their lives.
When it comes to the Internet however, the number of people guilty of this habit seems to be a lot larger. If you are really interested in avoiding the circumstances that may lead to you abandoning your website and a potentially great idea, you might want to take a look at these ten tips that will guide you and show you how to follow through with your ideas.
1) Have a Detailed but Flexible Plan
Having a plan is essential when you want to put your idea into play. Your plan should be as detailed as possible and incorporate various elements that will be needed before your website takes off, when it takes off and after it has been fully launched and is in operation. This plan should be detailed but flexible allowing any necessary modification when the need arises.
2) Tailor Your Idea to a Budget You Have Available and Can Afford
When you've come up with a detailed plan, you'll have a better chance of running through everything and figuring out how much your plan is going to cost you. If the final cost is more than what you are prepared to put up with, don't shelve the idea and forget about it, instead take a look at the plan critically and see what can be removed and how you can reduce costs. Also make sure you have the funds available for the project.
3) Keep it Simple, Avoid the Complex
A lot of people have ideas that tend to incorporate everything great they can think of. This is usually a recipe for disaster, handling a website that has different capabilities and features is a whole lot difficult than juggling a bunch of tennis balls.
If you want to start a news website, focus on one or a few niches, keep your website design simple and make sure you have enough content to keep your website going. Avoid doing complex stuff right from the start like adding video features or twelve sub-categories of news items, doing too much too soon is one quick way down the road to having an abandoned website as you'll quickly find out that you can't keep up. Once you've figured out the basics and you know how to handle the complexities of managing your website you can make more complex upgrades gradually.
4) Profit is Good but You Need to Work First
Not every website is started as a hobby, a large number of website ideas are started to make money and there's really nothing wrong with wanting to operate a website idea that makes you money. However if you aren't ready to take out the time to develop, maintain and market your website when it is launched and you want results quickly, you are pretty likely going to abandon your website pretty soon. Take pride in working on your website idea, adding content, getting incoming links and other things that should make your site popular over time. It's also important to have tracking tools to ensure you are making the required progress, in time success will come.
5) Avoid the Doomsday Crowd
If there's one thing you get a lot of on the Internet, it's free advice from people you don't know. Free advice isn't always what you need, you'll find a lot of people telling you that your idea is a dumb one and if you listen to a lot of this kind of stuff, you are bound to get discouraged pretty easily and you're bound to abandon your website and all your ideas. Think positively, avoid unnecessary negativity and work hard, find a means to constantly improve your ideas and you will be on the path to a having a successful site.
6) Choose Something That Interests You
It isn't exactly compulsory that you must set up a website that deals with stuff you are madly in love with, but you must be fairly interested in whatever your website or idea is about. If you find the subject matter boring the chances are that you won't want to deal with the equally bothersome and boring task of constantly updating your site.
7) Choose a Hosting Package That Meets Your Needs
People tend to pick out hosting plans as if they are in a bodybuilding contest, there's a lot of interest in getting a large package with all the available features. If you can afford it and it's really what you need, fine. However, don't go looking for the biggest if it does not match your immediate needs. You might find it hard to keep up with payments later on and leave your site abandoned.
8) Have a Website That is Easy to Update
The reason blogs are so popular is because they are easy to set up and easy to update. A website that is hard to update is never attractive to the owner and least of all its audience.
9) Fresh Content is Constantly Required
Even if your website is a business website, find a way of getting content that is frequently updated and which is about something that has to do with what you have to offer. Fresh content is the key to repeat user traffic as well as new visitors. Always keep more content than you need ready for addition in case you fall into a situation where you are short on ideas and your site requires updating.
10) Seek Out Similar Websites
No one is an Island unto themselves, if your website concerns a particular niche, make sure you take the time out to seek out other websites and people who operate in that niche, this way you catch up on information, learn new tricks and constantly have a chance to improve and update your website.
About the Author:
Mike Dias is a Canadian writer, writing for M6.Net Windows Hosting, with an interest in anything that has to do with computers and the Internet. He's been writing for the world of computers and technology for 5 years and loves to travel a lot often spending months tucked away in remote corners of the world working from his laptop and any available Internet connection.