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Rules for Website Success

Cutting through chaos to find success

There is no denying it: the Internet is a confusing place.

Commerce, piracy, debate, theft, publishing, networking, research, news, war—it all happens online. It’s chaos.

When you take a step back, take a deep breath, and start making sense of what’s going on, it can seriously impact your impression of the Web. Chaos slowly becomes clarity. ROI suddenly becomes possible.

We at the Mequoda Group frequently take these introspective moments to analyze how the Internet makes some publishers rich and other publishers frustrated. Because once you understand the Web, you can start to make money from it.

This is important to realize. When you start publishing online, you’re not entering a business world of total chaos. There are trends, rules and strategies available.

There are rules, for instance, to making a website. Breaking the rules won’t land you in jail, but they will prevent you from generating website revenue.

The nature of these rules largely depends on your online publishing strategy. How do you intend to make money online?

It does not matter if you monetize your website through subscriptions, advertising, memberships, retailing or donations. There is a specific type of website with required rules waiting for you.

Decide what kind of website you need and if it is going to work for your publication. If you already have a website, make sure that it has clearly defined goals and proven strategies to reach them.

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MPP

Learn how to choose the best subscription pricing & single-copy pricing strategy for your subscription websites & subscription apps when you download a FREE copy of How to Use Contrast Pricing to Increase Subscription Revenue.

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Membership Websites, for example, need to sell memberships. That is their goal.

To do that, Membership Websites need to be a valuable reference tool for users. They need extensive archives of content that users can easily navigate.

Visualize a reference book, like a dictionary or a phone book, next to a 250-page novel. The reference book is well organized and bursting with content. The novel has less content and is not organized for reference.

Now apply the same content ratio to ordinary websites and Membership Websites. That’s how much content a good Membership Website, like ConsumerReports.org, requires.

So, two rules (among others) for establishing a Membership Website are:

  1. It needs to sell and renew many memberships
  2. It needs to have an extensive archive

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MPP

Learn how to choose the best subscription pricing & single-copy pricing strategy for your subscription websites & subscription apps when you download a FREE copy of How to Use Contrast Pricing to Increase Subscription Revenue.

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The Internet is not total, inexplicable chaos. There are rules to every type of website you could want to create. When you begin to learn and master these rules, you can start designing profitable online marketing and publishing strategies.

Through our research, for instance, we’ve identified seven types of websites that publishers use to make money online. Each of them has their own requirements and rules to maximize their profitability.

Some publishers operate a hybrid of these designs, other publishers operate a network of them, but almost every publisher’s website can be broken down into these seven archetypes.

How chaotic can the Web be when every successful publisher’s website can be broken down into seven distinct designs?

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