Webhosting and having a website on the internet is not that difficult, especially considering that once it is online – it is on there forever. But, some of the terms and definitions can be confusing. So, let’s explain what a web browser, hosting service, cPanel, and FTP is.
First of all, you already have a web browser on your computer. This is Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Safari, and this is how you get on the internet. This is the program where you type in a web address and view a web page. This is how other people will find your website. They will open up their web browser, type in your web address, and end up on your web page. This is the thing that allows you to view files and pages on your site. You set up what is called an HTML page, this is what any web page looks like. It has graphics, and different font sizes and colors. When you link to a downloadable file, called a zip file, this is downloaded through the web browser as well.
What is a hosting service, This is a service that you pay on a monthly basis, probably about $10 per month, to store your files. You don’t want to store your files on your own computer because if you got offline, no one would be able to get to them. You want to put your web pages, articles, or your blog on a $10 per month web host so that it is fast and that anyone can get to these files and pages 24-hours a day.
When choosing a web host make sure that webhost is a cPanel webhost. This is an interface where you can do things to your website, set up email accounts, sub-domains, or additional domains. This is where yau maintain your website. You can change your password, add extra users, all kinds of fun stuff like that.
Finally, FTP or File Transfer Protocol, is the way that you can upload your files to your website. You will use a program such as Filezilla to connect to your site using FTP, and then drag and drop whatever audio files, .pdf’s, .zip files or HTML web pages onto your website so people can view them through your web browser.
What happens is, they type in your address in their web browser and are contacting your hosting service and then they see the files that you have set up using cPanel and FTP.
When you are looking for web hosting, in other words – a place to store your website, any good webhost is going to charge you a monthly fee. But, you might come across cheaper or even free web hosting and I want you to stay away from these types of offers for many reasons.
The first reason is that you get what you pay for. If you are not paying a webhost any amount of money, it probably won’t have very good service or very good support. Some web hosting companies will webhost you for free if you display an advertisement on your site. But why would you set up a site just to advertise someone else’s business, Just pay for web hosting, pay the monthly fee, and find a way to justify that cost.
After all, a good price to pay for web hosting at a place like hostgator, is $10 per month for unlimited domains. That means you can pay $10 every month, and if you have 20 .com names and 20 different websites, you still just pay $10 per month. And, this price is even cheaper if you pay on a yearly basis. If you can find a way to budget $10 per month out of your budget or make the site profit more than $10 per month, then you have made your money back.
In addition to free and cheap web hosting offers, I want you to avoid lifetime hosting or super-expensive hosting. There is simply no reason to pay $50 a month for a shared server. If you are paying $100 or more, you can actually get hosted on a dedicated or faster server – but again, you don’t need this if you have a small website or if you have a small number of visitors.
Avoid lifetime hosting, avoid free or cheap hosting, and avoid expensive hosting – just look for something in the $10 per month range.
On the internet you have a choice of many different topics to market yourself under. You can teach marriages or pregnancy, BBQ cooking, football, betting, all kinds of topics, but one topic you definitely should stay far away from is the how to make money niche.
The reason is because there are too many ‘fake it till you make it’ marketers. There’s too much hocus-pocus non specific selling and it’s hard to improve and get people to the next step in the how to make money niche.
First of all if you’re getting started and you don’t make money why would you teach other people how to make money, The only way you could come across in any believable sense is to lie which is really not a good idea to lie about a system that doesn’t work and to make money off something that you have never done. It’s way easier to choose a topic that you’re already very good at. It might be accounting or the stock markets or setting up a website, these are all more specific areas where you can easily show your expertise without trying to say you make a lot of money.
A big problem with the how to make money niche is that all of the ads for this can’t really say anything. All they can say is I have a secret system, buy it and you will get a bunch of money. The problem with that is that there are a lot of refunds and very few successes with people who actually buy products like this. You don’t want to be someone selling one of those solutions, that’s why you should stick with something that you’re good at, that you enjoy, that you can already show over and over again how good you are.
For example, are you good at outsourcing, that’s a great alternative to the how to make money niche. Can you show people how to budget or save money, then the personal finance niche is way better for you. The number one reason for staying out of the how to make money niche is that if you lie and fake it now, what will you do if you actually start making money, Then you have to make the lie bigger and bigger. Whereas if you simply tell the truth, there’s nothing to remember. If you can show me how you make money flipping houses in real estate, document what you do and your blog post, articles and products will practically write themselves.
When it comes to collecting money on the internet, there are pretty much two different types of websites. An ecommerce site, which is kind of like an Amazon.com storefront where there are many pages on the same site and many different products for sale, many different ways to buy and the other method is a sales letter which is where you have a single web page and just one thing to buy.
Which is right for you, It really depends on if you have a big inventory already or not. An ecommerce site means that you have lots of products for sale, you might already be an established offline business and you want people to come to your site and pick and choose exactly what they want. They might be able to buy multiple quantities of your products, for example, they might buy three flowerpots or five trading cards and they are educated enough to go thru the process of adding items to a cart, checking out and giving you their payment information. An ecommerce site is great if you are an offline store with an inventory that has things that can be shipped. The disadvantage to it is that it’s a confusing experience to navigate, there are lots of links, it takes a while to set it up and get this entire product line on and get all the kinks out and it is hard to improve the conversion rate. In other words it’s difficult to tell if making one change to your site really got more people to buy because they are so many links and pages on this site.
The alternative is a sales letter which is where you only have one thing for sale. This is great if you only have one product, if you have not made the product yet or if you want to focus on people getting one thing from you. A sales letter is pretty much the opposite of an ecommerce site. There’s no shopping carts, there’s no way to buy multiple quantities of anything, there’s one web page to explain what it is you’re offering, which could be a digital report, physical CD or a physical item, but there’s one web page explaining one item and there is one single payment button. People hook on one button and they can buy just one thing. This has a very fast setup because you set up the sales letter and the payment button and it is easy to make changes and find out if those changes get you more sales. The disadvantage to a sales letter is that you can only offer one thing at a time.
Which is right for you, an ecommerce site with many pages or a sales letter with one page, If you already have a big inventory an ecommerce site is for you. But if you have just one thing to offer then definitely set up a sales letter as the front page of your website.
Congratulations, you’ve decided what topic you want to create your product line about. Maybe it is a membership site about travel, maybe it’s a software program, maybe it’s a course about mobile marketing, maybe it’s a community about cooking. Whatever it is, you’ve chosen your niche and now it’s time to choose a domain name or a dot com name where people can type in a web address and end up on your site.
When you choose a domain name, make sure that it is a dot com name, that it contains the key word of your niche, that it is as short as possible, which means two or three words, and remember that you can always park domains later.
First of all make sure that your site is a dot com name, for example http://www.example.com. Don’t end your web address in dot net or dot info because those do not appear as trustworthy as a dot com web address. Also make sure that your URL or your domain name contains the key word of the niche you have chosen to be in.
If you are in the public speaking niche, then make sure that whatever your dot com name is that the term public speaking is somewhere in that web address. Also make sure that it is not a super long name. We don’t want to make the web address be something like publicspeakingfortotalbeginners.com because that is too much to remember and if you are being interviewed or telling someone what your address is or tabling it out on a form, whatever you’re doing we don’t want to have the name be super long because then it will be easy to forget or misunderstand.
There is good news and you can have the best of both worlds. You can park domains on top of your original domain which means that people can type in different dot com URLs and still end up on your site and that means that if you want to have your brand be a short domain name that contains the name of your niche plus one additional key word that’s your brand but then to capture the search engine results or to get people to be able to type in a longer phrase, you can get this longer four or five word dot com name and set it so that it goes back to your site either way. This is called domain parking.
That’s how you choose a domain name once you have already selected a niche. Find a dot com address that’s available, make sure it contains your key words such as personal finance or stress management, keep it short because we want it to be easy to remember, but if you find a domain name that is longer, that is unregistered, you can park it or in other words forward it to your site at the same time.
It’s really easy to get ahead of yourself and not just decide on one niche or topic for your website but get crazy and think about five or 10 of these niches and even then you might be wondering should you do business under your real name in all five or 10 of these niches. Or should you have a fake name or a pen name depending on which niche you are in, I’m here to tell you that you need to just pick one niche, that way you don’t have to worry about being a jack-of-all-trades and you don’t have to worry about having a pen name either.
Keep it simple. Start with just one niche under your name. If you want to be the self-improvement expert then that is what your exact niche is. Don’t worry about the next five products, the next two products, just what website are you creating today and on what topic and put all of your energy into that.
The reason for this is first of all it’s easier to focus on one project and get it finished before moving on to the next thing but if you did have two different websites in two different niches under the same name, then that means somebody might find you as the self-improvement expert and when they search your name in Google they might find you also under the video poker expert and vice versa. Now the issue is are you really an expert in self-improvement if your name is also listed under video poker. That’s why you should stick to one niche and partner with someone else if you branch out into other niches.
If you are an established expert in self-improvement and you want to get into teaching video poker then find someone who is established in that niche or who wants to become established in the niche and partner up with them and split the profits.
The alternative is to have a pen name or a fake name in the other niche. The problem with that is that if I’m about to buy your product about video poker and I investigate your company name or your address or your name which customers do every now and then, they will find that you don’t exist or that you lied about who you are and now you have lost that trust. That is why you should stay away from multiple unrelated niches. Stay away from a pen name and focus on one single niche and establish yourself in that niche under your real name.
Stop holding back and stop overthinking for months at a time what your first website should be, because even though your website has to be centered around a specific niche such as computer programming or self improvement, your niche might get more specific or slightly change over time. It might take you a while to figure out what you enjoy that makes money and even if you do slightly change niches, there is a chance they can talk to each other.
My niche actually has changed over time. I began marketing in the computer programming niche, specifically the PHP niche, which the average person doesn’t know what it is and many people who even know what it is are afraid of it and do not want to learn it. However, when a software program called WordPress came along, it suddenly became easier. WordPress is a blogging platform built on top of PHP where people can point and click to install plug-ins and they can make very simple changes that are not as scary as plain PHP. It took me releasing a few products in PHP to realise that the WordPress niche was more profitable and had a wider customer base and that is what happened. I released a few products in one niche until deciding what was better.
You might not only realize what’s more profitable but what you enjoy more. I know that for me, it’s more fun to make computer programs faster which I was able to do faster in WordPress than in PHP. There was also the factor of WordPress being more point and click than PHP which meant less customer support on my end. I can simply make a video saying click this, click that and it was a lot easier to explain these tutorials in WordPress than in PHP.
Finally, it is OK to change niches if they can still talk to each other. It’s no fun throwing everything away and starting from scratch. That’s why when I had my PHP products and somone bought those, I could then promote my WordPress products and vice versa. That means I did not have to give up on the PHP line of products, I could keep those out there and use them to funnel new customers into the WordPress area.
You might not choose the right niche the first time. It could change over time. You might figure out what makes more money, what you enjoy more but if your niches are similar enough where one can promote the other, then you will be OK.
I know that there are hundreds if not thousands or hundreds of thousands of various things your blog and your website can be about but there’s no point in going into any of these silly little niches if they aren’t profitable.
Is scuba diving training profitable or surf boarding, I don’t know, but by looking at these three components you can easily decide if a niche is worth going after. Figure out if you have competitors, ask yourself if you have any existing contacts in these areas and explain to me how this can help me.
First of all, you don’t want to blaze a trail when it comes to marketing on or even off the internet. It’s good to have competitors. Competitors mean that everyone else has already made the mistakes for you. It means that you already have some people you can contact for interviews or to promote you as an affiliate or even for you to promote as an affiliate and it’s overall proof that it’s possible to make money in this niche. That means that if you don’t have any competitors at all or anyone to even compare yourself against, then that might not be a good niche for you.
The next thing you should think about is do you have any existing contacts in that niche. It’s one thing to go on the internet one day and tell yourself I want to teach real estate, but it’s quite another if you are an ex-realtor, if you know people who can recommend you or who can be a part of your product or who you can interview to capture leads. If you used to have a job in a certain industry that’s perfect because it means you probably know people who can help you along the way. You almost never want to go into a niche cold. Go into something where you are already trained in that area, where you also know the players in that area so that you have an easier time not only making your products but getting traffic in the future as well.
Finally, think about the ‘what’s in it for me’ factor because we want to make this exciting. If your niche was how to solve crossword puzzles, can you explain to me how that saves me money, saves me time, avoids pain or gains me pleasure, And if not, it’s not a very good niche but it becomes a lot easier to justify any price or justify any offer if it’s, for example, $100 and by buying this it saves me more than $100. If you were selling a real estate course for $1,000 and it saved me six months or a year of aggrevation, you could easily justify that to me. Think about if you can save money, save time, avoid pain or gain pleasure.
Those are the three components to figuring out if the niche you’ve chosen is profitable. Do you have competitors, contacts and what’s in it for me,
One thing that bothers me is when I come across students who have a list of 10, 20, even 30, different topics or niches that they might make a website about. Guess what, If you haven’t narrowed down your niche, which could be something like green energy, lawn care, weight loss or even real estate, unless you choose that topic you can’t go any further because there’s no domain name to make, there is no web page to create, there’s no product to put up for sale. You need to choose a niche.
So how do you even think of an idea and narrow it down to just one of these possibilities, Think about what skills you have, what could you personally get paid for right now and who else is advertising in this niche.
It’s funny because we all have certain skills. I know that you might have certain hobbies, you might have had certain jobs, you might have gone to school for one topic or another, you have a set of skills and some or all of them might be staring you in the face. For example, are you good at chess, Do you know how to repair cars, Do you know how to fix up a home, Any of these things could possibly be a niche where you could have an authority blog, put out articles and have some kind of membership site where people pay you to get advice. Think about what people ask you about all the time, even in person, because you are the expert on that subject.
Making the website and waiting for it to make money isn’t that fun, is it, Let’s think about what could you possibly get paid for right now to do a task for someone. If you’re a lawyer that might mean setting up someone’s business entity structure, setting up their LOCs and their S Corps and so on. If you are a writer then that might be ghost writing, but either way it’s more fun to get a job right now that you bid on in a job site or get someone to pay you on an as needed basis. Do the work right now and get paid a few hundred dollars and now you have a case study or a starting point for some kind of training you might make in the future.
It doesn’t matter what you are good at or what niche you decide on if no-one is making money in that niche then chances are you won’t either and it’s not going to be as fun unless you pick a topic where you can make money from it. That’s why you need to search for that topic in the search engines, and on Facebook, and on other sites and figure out who is advertising in this niche because if people are paying for ads every single day that means they are making money with it. If other people are making money in these niches, then you can have a starting point, you can see how they do it and then you can do it too.
When deciding on a niche, first think about what skill you have, what kind of activity can you get paid for today or this week even offline in person. Finally, take a look at who is advertising in this niche and that will give you an idea, not only if that niche makes money but if you have chosen one that is too broad or too narrow.
I know that choosing a niche or a specific topic to make your website is a difficult choice especially because if you make the wrong choice then all the websites and all pages you make after that will also be bad. That’s why you should choose a good niche the first time and when you’re choosing a niche make sure that it is something that is mass market and profitable, something that is specific but at the same time something that is also appealing and fun to your target market.
What do I mean when a niche is both mass market and profitable, Mass market means that many people can use it. A lot of people, maybe not everyone, but many people want to lose weight or want to buy or sell a home and a niche such as weight loss is profitable because you see lots of infomercials, DVDs, courses and membership sites around that topic.
On the other hand, if we were to choose cable knit sweaters as our niche, that might be fun to use as a hobby but unless a lot of people are paying big money for materials or training about cable knit sweaters, then that is a niche you should stay away from.
Not just that but you need to get specific when you choose your niche because a niche like weight loss has so many possibilities that you end up looking just like everyone else because with weight loss there is different areas such as exercise or diet or specific types of weight loss such as fat loss and that means if you were to drill down one more level and make your niche fat loss instead of weight loss then now you look different than other people.
But it’s not just that. We also need to make this a fun niche for our potential buyers because nobody likes to do work, nobody likes labor. We want to make whatever we are teaching something that is appealing and fun. For example, I used to teach computer programming and I would make the programming lessons very short and simple with a clearly defined outcome. What we could do if we were in the weight loss niche is not only narrow it down to fat loss but make it appealing and fun, narrow it down to fat loss without diet and exercise and you could have a series of training products about fat loss but specifically how to do it without diet or exercise.
Those are some good examples of specific niches and how you can decide on it. First of all, choose something that you know a lot about and ask yourself is it a mass market kind of topic and not only that, is it something that people are willing to pay for, Is this information valuable,
Step two – how specific can you make it while still making it something that people will pay money for and step three how can you spin it so that it is appealing and fun, making all your competitors dull and boring while keeping you exciting.