Too many new online entrepreneurs, full of enthusiasm and vision, fail precisely because they never understand what it will take to make their business truly successful and of course profitable. All too often, their plan consists of little more than designing a pretty website then releasing it on the internet and hoping that at the end of the month they’ll attract enough traffic to sell enough so that they make some money. You have to do more than design a pretty website if you want to succeed.
While an entrepreneur’s passion for a business and its product and their own belief that all will go well is undoubtedly an asset, a huge one, optimism is not a business plan. It is no guarantee of success.
Today I was asked to look at a website for a business. What was obvious is the entrepreneur follows my number one principle and that is do what you love. His passion for his product comes through loud and clear. He seems to be my sort of entrepreneur, he lives and breathes his business. It’s a hobby, something he would do in his spare time for free, but which is so good that he wants to bring its benefits to the world.
While I was looking at his site, reading about him, I wanted so badly to hear this man speak to me, really get his passion for his products from his voice, his words. I’m very visual, but I’m also auditory and kinaesthetic, a really mix match me, and a video of this gentleman telling his story, speaking about his products would have been a gigantic leap forward in what his site is doing for him right now.
But his voice isn’t all I need to hear. Having looked at his twitter account, I know there are many people, including top sportsmen and women who use and love his product. They rave about it. But his website has no testimonials, no happy clients singing his praises. The craziness is, it’s obvious, he could get tons of testimonials and these really would boost what he himself is saying about his products.
The thing that disappoints me the most, and I know it’s not his fault, is the way his site is designed. It looks brilliant. Anyone who visits it would thing this is a really nice looking site. So at first glance you’d say great job web designer. But then you’d notice that all the important ‘keywords’ are created as images and not as text. In fact from a keyword and SEO point of view the site is a disaster.
To support this view I took a look at Google. First I checked adwords to see are the keywords being searched for. The answer was yes, and in descent numbers. Then I searched for the keywords and found that the website I was looking at wasn’t featuring on any of the search terms on the first 5 pages of Google. Not surprising with the way his site has been set up. So it’s important for your site to look good but it’s essential that it’s designed in a way that the search engines will find you.
The other thing that surprised me was, wait for it, he has no blog. Now of course as a blogger I’m going to throw my toys out the pram and say, if you want to grow a business online you must have a blog, it’s obvious right, well not to most new entrepreneurs online, alas.
Here is a guy, who has a passion for his products, the country he lived in for a time, sport particularly rugby, that also has another job that I’m sure has loads of interesting stories to tell. This guy could be blogging away about all these things, attracting visitors interested in what he has to say, winning new customers all the time.
I hope to get the opportunity to meet this guy, simply because you know I love talking with people who have as much passion for what they do as I. I also want to, and will get him to see this post, because I have no doubts his passion, his product, his business could be a real winner, particularly online, and just these simple things I’ve mentioned put right will make a huge difference for him.
Take a look at your site, are you really thinking about how to make your website what it needs to be to make you a success. Here is a tip, I’m not talking about spending fortunes on website designers, because everything I mention you could, easily do yourself. You can do more than design a pretty website and today’s example demonstrates no matter what you pay there’s no guarantee others will do this for you, so why not do it yourself.