“’Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?’
‘That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,’ said the Cat.
‘I don’t much care where —’ said Alice.
‘Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,’ said the Cat”
You might wonder why an article on websites would open with a quote like this but these words from Lewis Carroll’s book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland perfectly illustrates where people often go wrong whether they are building a website or a business. Most people who start websites dream about them becoming successful but many don’t take the time to learn how to reach their goals and even fewer put what they’ve learned into action.
If you want your website to succeed you need to be able to go above the average person who creates a site on a whim and abandons it almost as quickly as it was started. They may have had a dream but dreams are hazy, you need a plan that is clear and doable. Before you read further take a moment to think about what your goal for your website is. If you have one in mind then read on to see how a plan will help you reach that goal.
In a perfect world you would have all the time, money and other resources necessary to achieve any goal you might have. Unfortunately we don’t live in a world like that, in our world resources are finite. To promote and develop your website you need to know how to properly invest your resources, and doing that properly requires planning.
While money is incredibly important it could be said that time is the most valuable resource of all. Even if you work on your website on a full-time basis there’s only so much room during the day. By creating a plan and executing it properly you can cut down on time wasted .
Imagine you want to get to some store in your town but you don’t know how to get there. You could start walking or driving around and hope that you will stumble upon the store sooner rather than later, or you can look up where the store is and take notes on the roads you need to take to get there. Both might get you to your destination eventually but having the directions to your destination in hand will make sure that you save plenty of time.
The same principles can apply to your website. If you want a successful website you can just tinker with it and hope you reach your dreams or you can take the time to map out the route to your goals. So start by thinking about what you want from your website and what you can invest in your website to get where you want to be.
The hardest parts of starting a new website the actual act of creation or filling it up with content, the difficulty comes when you need to keep working on your site even if few people are actually visiting it. The people who succeed running websites, building muscle and creating art all understand a concept known as delayed gratification.
Delayed gratification is the ability to prioritize lasting achievements in the future over passing whims in the present. A prime example would be choosing a healthy meal over something high in fat and sugar. The sugar and fat may taste good for a moment but the healthy food can help you live years longer.
Updating your website can be like eating health food in the beginning. You might not see results immediately or even for weeks or months. The temptation is to spend your time doing things that feel good immediately, such as logging onto Facebook, watching TV or taking a nap. If you’re just aimlessly updating your website with no clear idea how your work is helping your website succeed then you’re likely to succumb to these temptations. But if you have a goal in mind and you know the steps you need to take to reach it then you can keep going even if success seems elusive.
Having a solid plan may not make work look fun but it can act as a constant reminder of why you are working. A plan can help you continue forward even when it feels like you aren’t getting anywhere, if the plan is good and you’re following it then you can be confident that you are moving towards your destination.
Learn From Others
By now you should know that you need to have a plan and you need to be able to stick with it if you want to succeed but that isn’t the whole equation. After all, if you’re like the child who wants to dig his way to china from his American home no amount of effort is going to make his impossible dream come true. To succeed you don’t just need any plan, you need a plan that will work.
The three basic elements of a website are design, content and promotion. At first you might understand just one of these, if you have any expertise at all. This isn’t being pointed out to discourage you, but rather encourage you to seek experts in these areas to learn from or help you. There are professionals who will do much of the work for you, but they will charge for their services so ask yourself what you can do for yourself and what you need help for. .
Don’t feel like you need to plan all on your own, if you want to succeed you need to learn from those who have come before you. You can do this by reading about what the pros do or you can hire one to help you, the answer varies from situation to situation.
Slow And Steady
The saying “slow and steady wins the race” might be a cliche but it’s repeated so often for a reason, it’s true in many areas of life. Building and promoting a website is one of the prime examples of this principle in action, at first no one will know about your website but if you keep building it up and promoting it then your success can build and build.
It’s time to ask yourself some questions. What is your goal for your website? How do you plan on achieving your goal? Are there any examples you can follow and learn from? What are you going to do on a daily, weekly or monthly basis to build your website?
If you can answer these questions then you are ahead of most of the people who start websites today. Just remember that having goals is fine but things will only take off when you use your goals to create a plan that you can actually put into action.
Lets end with one last question, what do you want from your website and what are you doing to achieve your goal? We love to hear your answer.
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