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If you are new at starting a Website, my mistakes may save your time and money
My first attempt at doing my online business as coffeemelodie dot com didn't take off really well. That was a year ago.
I signed with a very good web hosting company and pre-paid in bulk to get a discount rate and found out that what was promised to be as easy as a drag-and-drop and point-and-click was anything but. Plus, it was a little over my head (okay, A LOT over my head). Its marketing department went over-board in advertising, its sales dept was very eager- doing the job and then disappearing- and its support dept did have a lot to say; yet, nothing helped me get my website up and running. Ah, trial-and-error! Mistakes are great for learning, and I keep learning as I keep making new mistakes!!! The part that isn't so good is, some mistakes cost money!! I grew up in the sales business, witnessed the worst and the best, saw the rise and the downfall of many. I knew I needed to find a company that would not only take my money but would also provide me with at least the basics I needed to get my internet business going. I always knew what I wanted, but the tools to carry out my idea were just way too complicated. I needed to set up my office (and in it my store), and often I was alarmed by how easy it was for me to get side-tracked into the complexities of setting it up. It cost me my brain, my time, and, of course, my money!!!
First I checked my ranking, googling my name every which way I could. Two hundred hits, most of which were left over from having performed and conducted classes in Thailand - including some controversial topics that I didn't start, but paid for (now, don't you all run to look me up: it's not worth it, so please stick with this!!!!). My website did show up, but it wasn't in the top part of the search result. Then, I checked my baritone's name - wow, it showed up ten times more than mine, but his website wasn't at the top of the page, either. I figured that I would place as many links between his and my websites to see if and how much the ranking improved. The difference was subtle. At this point, the terms meta keywords, meta tags, and meta descriptions came to my attention. I didn't know what they were, but their presence on my radar made me think that I should find out. I gathered what I learned, ran back to my website (and Ralph's), and I played with the keywords and descriptions. My understanding perhaps wasn't correct, and I still didn't get better rankings. This time, though, I came across many companies who sell software to 'optimize search engines' (huh? ) that came with '3000 free submissions' (wow, that's a lot, do I need that many? What happens after the 'free submission' run out) to 'popular search engines' (sorry, I recognized only the typical google, yahoo, msn, and I only use google - the rest are just exotic names to me - but I'm sure it's because of my lack of Internet fluency). I decided to pay a company to help put me on top (of the SE - don't think otherwise!) Again, ignorance is not always bliss: eight hundred hits on my name, and a hundred junk emails a day, literally jamming my inbox everyday.
Trial-and-error. Mistakes are great for learning. Unfortunately, they cost money. But I did gain knowledge of something important that has become my valuable asset.
I have my own ideas about how best to utilize the Internet aspect of the business. The website concept which I had in mind when I started a year ago was not so different than the one with which I operate now. But, the method to get to doing it and deliver my goods to you -my clients- came so clearly and so easily to me. And, finally, I am able just to concentrate on how to make my offers and services the most desirable for you.
Oh, and the hits on search engines? I didn't give it as much attention as that I give to other things anymore, but it did improve enough to make me feel good. And, no, I didn't have to pay anyone to put my website on the top of the page. What is obviously important is the quality of my goods, and I'm at the place where I can just concentrate on that. What a relief!
Lastly, I did not have to separate my soprano side from my business side, nor did I have to sacrifice any of my artistic elements to run the business. I am still music and am operating my business as an artist with a fierce passion for my art and my love - which is everything I do.
The goal of La CoffeeMelodie Suite is to provide its audience with useful information, for both general education and on specific topics of interest. It has every intention of keeping learning entertaining, yet real, through the use of real life, day-to-day scenarios of what goes on in this family of six. At the same time, it also wants to increase within everyone the awareness of raising a family responsibly, in the hope that this will develop into the production of better quality, and therefore better citizens in society.
The team at this site is working continuously to fulfill its goal, in the hope that La CoffeeMelodie Suite will soon be a one-stop hub for all.