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The 3 Big Mistakes I Made With My First Website
This is an article composed by Ivan from Thefastlaneforum

I thought I'd share why my first serious website (started 7 months ago) was a total flop. There are a lot of reasons, but here are the main three:

1. Too small a market: I chose a keyword that had very few searches. So even when I got to #2 in Google for my keyword, I was getting about 25 unique visitors a day. Also these visitors were mostly looking for free information, not a product. People who are looking for free info are much harder to sell to than those who are looking for a product to fill a specific need.

2. Not calling people to action. I naively assumed that visitors would be actively looking for an opportunity to buy from me. Confusedmx4: I was a bit surprised when no one did. I've since learned that Web surfers are a fickle breed that need to be guided to a product and are affected by things like button colors.

3. Quantity over Quality: This site was a blog, and I knew that Google liked when I posted daily. So, to keep my ranking, I would pump out B-minus material every day instead of putting out A-plus material twice a week. Now I look back and wish that instead of 80 mediocre posts, my site had 30 awesome ones.

On the bright side, I learned a ton about Internet marketing and business in general (and made $.01 from Adsense!).

Anyone else want to add to the list?

Below are some other comments on the same posts.

It takes so long to learn simplicity.
I just came off a two year break from a website I worked constantly on for close to three years. I can only shake my head when I look back at all the work we put into the site and how miserably it failed. I've learned so much about web design and seo in the past two years I feel like a completely different person than the one who put that site together.

My three biggest mistakes included:

Terrible SEO
Poor Function
Fad Content

It was so hard to let it go, I literally have never stopped thinking about it. Six months ago on a whim I applied for a freelance writing job on a major content site. I am still shocked I got the job. I have learned so much with this job it is overwhelming. I am now fortunate to have access to a community of writers that are always encouraging each other and give great pointers on everything from generating content, time management, and my new favorite SEO.

So now after a two year break and growing both as a person and web designer I am working on a complete revamp of the old site. Using the same name, a portion of the content base, and a new twist with an actual business model I am super excited again. Working on this fastlane project makes me feel so alive and excited for the future.

I look at those early years as a stepping stone in my journey to financial freedom. It is going to make my success story so much better and I feel like I have something to prove. To show I can make it work to all of my fastlane doubters.
It takes so long to learn simplicity.
With my first website, I went into a HIGHLY competitive market with NO competitive advantage. I had to compete on price. Eventually my suppliers said, we can't have you selling at lower price points than everyone else so I shut that business down.
It takes so long to learn simplicity.
I've always launched a informational blog to realize after the fact that my competition was way too huge, or that my niche just plain sucked for product conversions. My keyword research sucked, and it STILL sucks because of my failure in the past to go after certain keywords makes me edgy on going after new ones. This will change.

I have one blog that I am actually passionate about, and write the content myself. 100% unique and in my own words, and it ranks well for a few terms that get a decent amount of traffic. I've actually noticed that the more informing my articles are the LESS clicks I get on Adsense and my bounce rate drops like crazy. I chalk this up as a GREAT thing because a) more people are finding exactly what they want b) they'll be more apt to come back / subscribe / join my forum c) I gain trust for future CPA or product marketing!

So basically what I've learned to do is find something that you're at least remotely interested in.
It takes so long to learn simplicity.
I set up a bunch of Web sites when I was younger but they all fell through when I realized how unimportant my content was. Plus, I knew absolutely zero about SEO or backlinking. I think I made, like, $.02 from AdSense because of the sites. I did have a Web site that once got like 1000 hits in a month, which was quite a milestone for me. But it had no advertisements that I made money off of, so it was kind of a flippity flop as far as money is concerned. I had fun building it and learning about HTML and stuff. Website building and design is probably the most awesomely nerdy skill for a 13 year old to have.
It takes so long to learn simplicity.
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