Everyone wants to have the next big website. If you can be the next Bloggess or come up with the idea for the next Buzzfeed, you could quit your day job and see the world. At least that’s the idea. What most people don’t realize is that those viral sites took a long time to get to where they are. Creating a successful site and useful or engaging content takes a lot of time and effort. Even when you’ve created something wonderful, it can take awhile for Google to catch on and start ranking your site higher.
Yet if you hang in there and your site makes it big, all that time and effort pays off big time. You just have to hang in there and remember that every big site had to start somewhere. Here are a few things you can do to start your own site and turn it into a runaway success:
Start with a Good Web Host
Don’t waste your time on free hosts or those that offer you unbelievably low monthly rates. Those hosting packages may be just fine when it’s just you and your mom reading your site, but once you start getting some real traffic, that host is going to crash again and again, costing you future visitors.
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You need a host like FatCow that will offer you reasonable rates while also giving you all the bandwidth and storage space you need to grow. The right host will also offer you extras like free site templates, email hosting, database hosting, and much more. Look past the price and read the fine print to make sure you are getting what you need now and for your future site.
Create a Great Design
Content may be king, but if your visitors are turned off by your site’s design, they’ll never stay long enough to read it. You need a web design that will draw in readers and direct them to your most important content. That means using engaging photos, making the right use of white space, creating a user-friendly navigation, and minimizing the graphic clutter and ads on the page.
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Get Good Content
Once you have people ready to read, you need to make sure you have something informative, engaging or entertaining to offer them. Whether you write the content yourself or you hire someone else to do it, you need to ask yourself: Does this content answer a question or meet a need that my readers have? Does it inspire them? Does it entertain them? If it does none of those things, you need to go back to the drawing board.
Remember to write engaging headlines that draw readers into your articles, and start every post with a great lead. You only have a few seconds to capture your reader’s attention — make the most of that opportunity.
Market Your Site
Site owners are finding success with marketing strategies such as social media marketing, proper keyword research, and mobile marketing to name a few. You should also create partnerships with other bloggers and site owners, sharing content or developing new products together that benefit your customers and raise the profile of your site.
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The best marketing strategies are comprehensive, employing multiple techniques and engaging multiple platforms.
Creating a successful website isn’t a simple process. In fact, thousands of books, websites and articles have been written about this topic alone. However, these are the building blocks that will get you started.
Just remember: It takes time to create a website that will be more than just a flash in the pan. Be patient, and be persistent. You will have to put in a lot of work, but once your website starts generating the traffic you want, it will all be worth it.