Among the things you may have been told to do in your business is to create ‘systems’. Most of the time, people talk about this in relation to outsourcing. Writing articles, submitting articles, social media posting, research and so on but really, it can be applied to websites too. In fact, it should be applied to your site building process.
I’ll admit I’ve not been doing this in the past. As our site portfolio grows (and grows), I’m really appreciating this concept and working towards creating whole website frameworks. Here’s what I’m thinking…
- Niche content site framework
- Opt-in only site framework
- Recurring membership site framework
- Fixed membership site framework
I think you get the idea.
Why? The simple reason – shortening the development cycle. You see, all these years, every time I launch a new project or site, countless hours are spent on perfecting the site. Very often, the design and structure depart significantly from similar projects because I enjoy trying new things and web design. Now, I realize this is a huge waste of time. It extends the duration to release a project and often, that translates to how quickly we make money on the project.
Won’t you end up with a ton of cloned websites?
Yes and no. Yes because that’s sort of the idea. All sites built using these site templates will have a similar flavor and layout. That’s not a bad thing at all. It can strengthen our branding. If I want to send people from site to site in our network, it’s probably better for the underlying structure remains the same. It creates familiarity and visitors don’t have to re-learn how to navigate each site.
No, because while the sites will maintain a similar structure, the colors and logos will change. My inspiration for this is the Envato marketplace. If you cycle through ThemeForest, AudioJungle, CodeCanyon and other sites in their network, you’ll see they all look the same but you know you are on a different site. Love it.
This concept of site framework is not something I came up with. I’ve done it for clients – though they don’t have a name for it. One of our clients own a network of fixed term membership sites. They all look the same. The only thing that is different is the logo. I created the basic membership site framework, bundle it up into a neat package where they can just set up a database, unzip and follow 2-3 steps. They love it. So much faster (and cheaper).
Do you build a lot of sites? It doesn’t matter what the subject matter is, if you can create sites faster, move your project along and make money quicker wouldn’t you?