How important is it to have an online business plan or strategy?
How important is it to have a map? Does it matter who you buy your map from?
We will get into all of that below.
The ‘Free Map’ versus the ‘Paid Map’
My family and I went hiking in Santa Fe this week.
The entire time we were walking on the hiking trails, my family kept joking about the ‘free’ map we were all using, versus the ‘paid’ map a man in the gift shop had tried to sell us before we went on our merry way.
The man trying to sell the map mentioned that the free map wasn’t accurate and complete and that you had to pay for the map to get all the information you needed.
Of course we didn’t buy the paid map and we started our hike. Right away, we were looking at which trail to start the hike on. The free map didn’t have this information marked clearly on it.
My dad remarked jokingly, “Guess we should have paid for the map! Then we’d know which way to go.”
As we kept walking, the map jokes continued.
One of us would say, “I wonder what those rock formations were used for? I guess we’d know the answer if we’d paid for the map!”
and my sister would say, “Yeah, that type of information is definitely not included on the free map!”
Guess we should’ve paid for the map!
We’d all laugh and say, “Guess we should have paid for the map!” and make all these jokes about the free map missing information that the paid map included, but we were obviously kidding.
It was way more fun to joke about all the things the paid map had that the free map was missing than it would have been to actually have purchased the ‘paid’ map.
Jokes aside, having a map, whether that map is paid or free, can be useful in any endeavor, especially when you’re trying to reach an end goal you have in mind.
If you don’t know where you’re going, and if you don’t have a clear plan written out, then there is no way you’ll get there.
How can you reach a goal if you don’t have one?
One thing that every single goal, website and non-website, I’ve ever reached has in common, is that I knew I wanted it before getting it, I wrote it down, made a plan to get there, and then worked toward it.
The point is, if you don’t clearly identify your goal, make a goal action plan, and work toward it every day, then you will never get to your goal, or any goal at all.
Create a map to help reach your goal
You need to create your own map, and it can be a free one. You can also get a special ‘paid’ map, by paying someone who’s been there to help you create a map, but the main takeaway is you need to identify a goal and create a map to reach that goal.
Otherwise, you’ll be drifting in life directed by other’s goals and wishes, such as your boss’s in your 9 to 5. This is not necessarily a bad thing, but it is something to be aware of.
You simply need to realize if you have your own goals to work toward and if yes what they are, or if you would rather be present and live life without specific goals.
Who should you hire to help you create a map?
If you want to start a company like Amazon, then paying Jeff Bezos to create your map would probably be a good idea. Although hiring him to create a map would likely be out of most of our price range.
If you want to be a teacher, then sure hiring your first grade teacher to create a map is a great idea. If you’re doing anything but becoming a teacher, then likely you’ll want to pass on Ms. Jenny’s map since she won’t know how to get to where you’re looking to go.
My first website goal
For example, my first website goal was to make $1,000 a month with a website. That is the reason I made my first two to three site purchases, all with this goal in mind.
I looked for sites I could take to this level on Flippa, would buy the sites and then work on improving their revenue.
At first I would switch ad networks to improve revenue to get to the $1,000 a month goal.
Then I worked on keyword research and adding new content to scale the sites farther past that point once I hit my goal.
If I hadn’t had my specific goal in mind of $1,000 a month, then I never would have spent as much as I did on website #2 and #3, because I would have had no reason to without my having my specific goal in mind.
Website Goal Map
1) When creating a website goal map, first figure out what you want and why you want it. You can spend time thinking about this in silence, or go on a walk outside and sleep on it for a few days.
Don’t make any decisions when you’re in any emotional state other than calm. If you’re angry, frustrated, depressed, excited, or emotional in any way, sleep another day or two before making your decisions or goals to avoid rushing into anything.
2) Next write down your specific goal, such as website revenue per month.
3) Then write down how you will get there. You can be specific here and write down if you will buy a site making X amount or start your own site from scratch, then what you will do to increase traffic or revenue and get to your goal:
Examples of action steps:
- Change theme to speed up site
- Test new ad networks
- Test new ad placements
- Keyword research 100 keywords for website
- Write and publish one piece of 1,000 word content per day for the next 100 days
- Backlink strategy
- Promotion strategy
- Email strategy
- Other traffic / revenue strategies
Fit your goals into your daily routine
I’ve found it is best when you can fit each into a specific daily routine, and take time to reflect each week and analyze progress and results, then shift your strategy in the direction of what is working the best
Obviously, this entire goal mapping process may not work for everyone etc, *insert whatever disclaimer here* and this is not advice or financial advice in any way it is simply my own experience and what has worked well for me.
You can comment here and let me know if you have ever reached a goal you set, or your own specific goal-mapping process if it includes anything I didn’t mention!