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  1. SEO Earthquake!
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    Talking Help: Web Site - Barriers for Entry


    I'm writing an article about what people should expect and plan for when building a new site and could use a bit of help. Here are the obsticles I can think of so far:

    Budget - How much cash do you have to build the site? Then maintain, update and add to it? Promote it?

    Experience - Web development isn't what it was 5 years ago. Experience for design to make sure your layout holds and experience for SEO to make sure your site gets listed and gets traffic from the SEs. Also experience to get conversions.

    Discipline - Keeping on track with the development timeline and then keeping the site up-to-date. Seeing the web site as always "in progress" never complete.

    Patience - Goes with discipline but sometimes sites don't do backflips right away.

    Traffic - Getting traffic. Putting the URL on all your collateral (business cards, fliers, advertisements, etc.), promoting the new site, encouraging repeat visits, SEO/SEM.

    Sandbox - Don't rely on G for traffic for *about* a year...

    Competition - Age advantage, backlinks, and the establishment of the brand/reputation online.

    Customer Base - If your customer base is *not* online or is just now getting online there are some technological limitations to keep in mind.

    Anything else?
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  3. SEO Earthquake!
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    No?
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  5. Croatia - Hrvatska
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    what about writing unique and quality content, to make diffrence from other sites

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    • rmccarley agrees : Sorry already gave you too much love, but thanks anyway! :)
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  7. SEO Chat Good Citizen (1000 - 1499 posts)

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    Also the time it takes to create that content as well as the fresh content that is needed for your site to rank well and encourage repeat visits.

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    I love SEO Chat.
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  9. Protecting wit's mice
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    You need to focus more on customer needs, what do they expect, need and how can you forfill those needs. After that figure out how you're going to reach the customers. For instance, if you're planning a viral marketing campaign, tv commercials or things like that then you won't need the specific SEO things (you can use Flash for instance). Another important factor to determine in advance is the planned life span for the site. And offcourse what the role of the site is within your business.

    After you know your customers, you know their needs and you planned on how you're going to reach them then you can start on things like budget and the more technical preparations.

    In short: Commercial preparations first, technical second. Web2.0 as I see it :-)

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    • rmccarley agrees : Great post - thanks!
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  11. Permanently Banned
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    also - CONVERSIONS
    what is the goal of the site? whether it's for the user to buy a product, fill out a form, provide information or send away for a free video, it's a very important issue to address.

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  13. SEO Earthquake!
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    Originally Posted by toddieg
    also - CONVERSIONS
    what is the goal of the site? whether it's for the user to buy a product, fill out a form, provide information or send away for a free video, it's a very important issue to address.
    Conversions applies, and setting clear obtainable goals does to a point. I think determining the site purpose is another article though...

    Maybe not?

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    • toddieg agrees : yeah... you're right.. save it for another one
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    Arrow Web Site Barriers to Entry - Rough Draft


    Well, here it is, the rough draft. Any input is appreciated.

    Web Site Barriers to Entry

    As with every business practice, it is important to understand the obstacles to entering a new market. The online market has changed drastically in the last few years bringing new barriers and methods of success.

    Experience and ability are the two most important assets to have when building business online. Often for new businesses or businesses just now entering the online market these assets are not directly available and must be purchased. For these new businesses, budget is the primary consideration.

    Experience can solve many problems before they begin. Having a “tour guide” or consultant help a new web site can be the difference between a successful startup and a web site that struggles through all the same problems and traps the “other guys” face. Experience is a shortcut for time.

    Ability often comes with experience but is not the same thing. Ability includes the variety of services supported. Ability also includes being available for the project. Those with high amounts of ability are often time-constrained, but know how to get things done.

    Budget for a new web site includes many factors including domain registration, web hosting, site design, site upkeep, and site promotion. Depending on the scale of the site, your industry, competitiveness and customer response these costs can vary greatly.

    Discipline is a major factor for keeping timelines and getting the most ROI.

    Patience is critical for dealing with site promotion issues, especially SEO. As Rome wasn’t built in a day, your online success won’t come overnight. There are many external factors that you must overcome and that means time.

    Your customer base or target market will have a huge influence on your web development. Are your customers online already? Will they need training? Are they content with their fax machines? Are they purchasing online or just shopping for information? Determining the technology level of your customers and what they expect before you start will help ensure success down the line.

    Offline integration is critical especially if you have an existing business model. Giving your online business less attention than your brick and mortar establishment is a big mistake. Customer service, responsiveness, availability and all the other concerns a business has apply online as well as off.

    A chain of command is critical to make sure the customer needs are met and that each person involved in the project knows what their responsibilities are. This prevents details from falling through the cracks, allows for proper budgeting and timelines, ensures fresh content goes up regularly, and allows better service for your customers.

    Generating traffic for your web sites happens in three areas:

    1. Offline Promotion – Promoting your web site through “traditional” channels including printed items like business cards, letterhead, envelopes, quotes, receipts & invoices, fliers, etc. You also want to include your web address in any advertising you do.
    2. SEO – Search Engine Optimization - The practice of making your web site as receptive to search engines as possible so you get the highest placement possible in the Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). This includes onpage factors such as site structure, keyword use and placement, proper use of code and many, many more. This also includes offpage factors which is usually getting as many links pointing to the site as possible.
    3. SEM – Search Engine Marketing – Along the same lines as SEO, but SEM often employs paid tactics to drive traffic such as Google’s Adwords.

    SEO Barriers to Entry

    Search engine traffic reaches an international audience and has a potential audience of millions. This makes it highly attractive but there are some factors that make ranking well difficult:

    Google has a filter called the Sandbox. It holds new sites in stasis while it determines their merit. This filter is in place to discourage spam and takes anywhere from 6 to 18 months to get out of. The more competitive the keywords sought, the longer the filter. This means your site will not appear for the keywords that generate the most traffic and that you will need to use other methods of getting traffic until this filter is lifted.

    The amount of competition you have in your field, particularly the competition going after the same keywords you are. The regular rules of engagement apply – whoever is faster, better and stronger will get to the top. Often bidding wars are created for Adsense terms making this option more expensive.

    Site and backlink age is a big factor with Google who assumes age can not be faked. So all things being equal, the site with the most time online will get placed above a newer site. Also links to a site are granted more power as they age.

    Return visits are critical to site success. Most online shoppers do not make a purchase the first time they visit a site so when you get a visitor to your site, you need to encourage their return.

    This can be done through onpage factors such as “bookmark this site” links but there needs to be a larger machine at work here. Namely tools and resources the visitor can’t get somewhere else. This means adding unique content on a regular basis. This content will also establish your site as an authority, something the search engines like a lot. And quality content will generate natural backlinks.

    Generating conversions starts with return visits but also has to do with attracting the right viewers to your site. More popular keywords may do you a disservice if they don’t attract “buyers”.
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  17. Go OSU Beavers!
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    I like it!

    As per another thread that you have going, make sure you have some of the keywords in your article as live links. It will basically create a good interlinking strategy for your site.
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  19. Free the SB
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    Nice draft...and the first couple of lines make a big difference...at least to me.

    On the first post you didn't mention applying it to business. Really there is no barrier to entry for creating a web site. There are millions of them. You can host it for free, there are easy tools to create web sites. Per a post on seomoz's blog, the most active bloggers are teens.

    Applying it to business and making it work makes all the difference in the world. There are definite barriers to entry.

    To me the biggest barrier to entry is the level of competition and that is touched upon throughout the draft. Its like any business, with which you are already aware. For instance if you want to make and sell steel...a big barrier to entry is millions of dollars, a big plant, and lots of qualified people, amongst other things; pretty big barriers to entry.

    Good thoughtful article RMC.
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    I think it's a great article for the audience you're putting it together for. Kudos for content and writing style. It has a smooth flow and puts the thought of SEO.online biz into perspective for those new to the field.

    On a semantic note, "Obstacles to Success" might be better than "Barriers to Entry" - similar to EP's thought, if you're going to open an excavation company, you need an excavator. All you need to run a website is a computer and an internet connection. There really are no barriers to entry for this field. Lots of barriers to financial success, but not entry. I'm probably more sensitive to this issue than others might be because in my day job I'm trying to steer our company more and more toward projects that present larger barriers to entry, such as cash, assets and licensing.
  22. #12
  23. SEO Earthquake!
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    Thanks for the thoughts all. I picked "barriers for entry" deliberately because it speaks the language of my target market. I haven't done any KW research to see what headline would be best, which I suppose I should... But in business you look at the barriers for entry assuming that once you enter you will be succesful. Barreirs to success would be a different article that covers a lot of the same information but from a different angle. If you follow...

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