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Make Money Online- the baby steps part 24

Welcome back to “Make Money Online- the baby steps part 24″, where we will be discussing the importance of putting a website plan in place and then doing some nitty-gritty hard work in accordance to that plan. You may be surprised at how little importance we place on website design and such. It´s not that we find it unimportant. It´s just that it will have little importance for the success of your website initially. It may sound strange but after an initial surge of work, setting your theme in place and adjusting it to your liking, you should be doing 90 % content and only 10 % website design and setup. there will be plenty of time to adjust and tweak website features and website design further down the road. And the beauty of it all is that you will actually have someone benefitting from those adjustments, other than yourself.

There are a number of things you need to get in place in order for your content-oriented website to reach its true potential. Let´s have a look at what the plan looks like so far. In this part of our guide we will give you a quick overview of all the different factors that are making up the key components of your plan. In the next part of our guiude we will look at some detailed plans regarding the most important parts of this list. It is truly hard work, but it has been written with your best interest in mind. This is the very same list we would give a friend or family member should they want to embark upon this road. These are the same advice we would give. As a matter of fact, if a friend or family member asked us about a proper course of action, we would tell them to read through this entire guide first: While we do not claim that it is complete, we feel it will give you a proper road map and push you in the right direction. The rest is really up to you. As is often the case in life.

Time to stop beating around the bush. Let´s look at the list of things that needs to be done. There are 18 things to be done on our list. We will cover the first 9 here and we will go on to cover the other 9 in the next part of our guide. Here goes:

1. Pick a topic. Most internet marketers will tell you to go niche. We certainly won´t disagree with that, as we have seen quite a few sites do well in very specific, narrow areas. But that doesn´t mean you should always do as the experts say. Above all things our advice would be to do something that you are passionate about, know a whole lot about and have a lot of experience about. If it happens to be a somewhat broader area, and not the highly targeted niche area all internet marketing gurus are rambling about, so be it. Sometimes, it may be a good thing to not be part of the crowd. Just be sure that you can ad great value to that specific area of topic, and put your personal spin on it and chances are you will come out fine in the end.

2. Do a SWOT-analysis regarding the topic of choice. This sounds a lot fancier than it is. You want a topic that has growth potential, is not overly competitive and suits your particular skill set. Google the other websites in this area of expertise. If you believe that you can deliver better value, or you have a different angle on what they are providing, you are good to go. Focus on your personal strengths and try to incorporate them as much as possible in your website. What makes you unique? In what area are you untouchable? There´s your angle.

3. Choose a domain name. Either go with something that describes what you are doing well or go with a “branded” name. You want to get a .com, the exception being if your website is targeting a national audience and you reside outside of the US. In that case you could use a national domain name. Still I would advice going for the dotcom. Try getting a short, unique, easy-to-type, easy-to-remember kind of name. A keyword or two in there might help out. A lot of the good names are already occupied. In case you don´t want to shell it out for one of those, you might need to compromise on some of your prerequisites. Don´t worry. While it certainly isn´t unimportant, it´s not a big deal.

4. Complete a short business plan. Making money online is a painstaking process. It will in most cases take years of hard work. While we are not huge fans of detailed business plan in the initial phases of a business (unless you are looking for funding), you do need to have some basic concepts in place. Your business plan is a strategic document. A strategic plan should present a vision, goals and structure for the coming 3-5 years. Keep in mind that successful internet entrepreneurs are very flexible. Your plan will change lots of times, but you will need a reference point to come back to throughout all the noise.

5. Complete a content plan. Your content plan is a tactical document. This means you need a specific plan regarding the content on your websites for the next 3-6 months.While this is tedious work, it must be done. You need to know what categories and topics you are going to erite about, where to get information about these topics, level of output, daily, weekly, motnhly and yearly goals, how long each post should be and in what order to fill out the website. A good content plan will get you started and, more importantly, keep you working. After the first 3-6 months your website should have a considerable amount of content on various topics within your niche.

6. Complete a weekly and daily plan. Your content plan needs to be divided into weekly and daily plans. The weekly and daily plans are operative documents, dealing with whatyou aer doing on a daily and weekly basis. They are intended to make sure you are actually working your plan. Remember that ideas are cheap. Action is priceless.

7. Choose a suitable theme. Browse around the internet and find some suitable theme for your website. Go for the developer´s package if possible. A standard theme will set you back anywhere between $ 30-100. Ask friends and other webmasters for advice. Do not go pay to much attention to some of the “top 50-themes”-lists out there, as they are often heavily distorted by the fact that the guy writing the list has lucrative affiliate deals with some of the most prominent themes that are being presented (or should we say pitched). Compare, look for strengths and benefits and above all; ask others who have gone down this road before you. Look for a theme that is already as close as possible to what your vision of your website is. Most companies providing these themes are good at a specific kind of theme, and many of the themes from a single company are in reality the same theme with some minor variations. In some cases you may try out a theme before making a purchase. They all promise mind-blowing support, superior SEO-performance and a bug-free experience. In some cases the promises may turn out to be just that- promises. Don´t sweat it if you happen to make the wrong choice, the first time around. You can easily change theme later on. You can alter some of the features and functions of a theme, but your best bet is to find something that needs little or no tampering. Look for something that pretty much fits the bill from day one.

8. Launch your website. We´re not talking a legendary kick-off party with free bar, media coverage and a rented DJ. Just go live. No point in postponing this one. We have spent loads of time over the years trying to convince fresh interpreneurs to launch, even though they haven´t got it quite perfect yet. Perfect is a goal of the future, now is all that matters. We choose a so-so today over a perfect tomorrow, any day of the week. The important thing is to just take action and keep improving your website on a regular basis. Don´t wait fot the timing to be just right, because it never will be. Launch now and use that anxiety over not being finished with your website to push yourself in order to get your site up to par as quickly as possible. Obviously, if your site is technically advacned rather than content oriented, the launch may need to be postponed until all functionalities have been properly tested. But in general, the sooner you go the better.

9. Do a sketch of features,layout and design. Don´t overdo this one. It is likely that your site will end up looking a whole lot different in a couple of years anyway. Get some inspiration from the web. The theme you have chosen have really provided you with a rough prototype. Just decide on where you want to go from there. Don´t overdo this initially. Now is not the time to do complicated stuff. You can always do that later on, when your website has become more of a resource and some traffic is in place. But get an idea of the basic stuff in place. Clean and simple is really the way to go here. Many new internet entrepreneurs go for big bold logos, flashy design and over-the-top colour schemes. Don´t be that guy. Just go with something stylish and easy on the eye. It will grow on you in the long run, we promise.

We have covered the first 9 things on our list. Join us in the next part of our guide, “Make Money Online- the baby steps part 25″, as we take a closer look at the remaining 9 things on our list. Let´s go get some more.

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