As you probably know, fitness and outdoor activites are my passion. I was very excited to find a website called Sparkpeople.com. Sparkpeople has all the elements of a successful website and community. I would now be able to easily track my exercise and nutrition.
My 5 tips on making your website successful:
1. Create compelling and informative content.
Sparkpeople has everything you need to know about healthy living. New material is added daily. Sure SEO is important, but if you frequently create compelling content and use appropriate keywords, you will be able to drive traffic to your website.
2. Provide good value.
Sparkpeople is free! And with Mozilla Ad-Block plug-ins, I don’t even see the ads on the site! You may choose to charge for some of your website services, which is fine. Just be sure it’s a good value.
3. Provide tools and content that keep people coming back.
You earn sparkpoints for activities. Okay so the sparkpoints are virtual and have no value, but you can virtual trophies for earning them. I love going to Sparkpeople because it’s fun and it’s a nice break in my day. Yes, it really is all about the content.
4. Clearly understand your customers’ needs and address them.
Sparkpeople clearly understands it’s members’ needs. They come to the website for health and nutrition information and support. You don’t need to be a computer techie to use the website.
5. Nurture an informed and involved community.
There are fitness and nutrition experts, as well as an active community of like-minded people passionate about healthy living. I believe that any business can benefit from a community of like-minded people.
However, there is a downside to this. I found myself spending literally hours on the website, perusing articles, corresponding with my new online friends, etc. I finally realized that this is an antithesis to becoming more active.
This is just one example of a successful website, there are many more out there. What websites have you seen that are successful?
P.S. When I initially wrote this post, I was thinking of websites in general. As several of the commenters pointed out, these tips also apply to blogs. A heartfelt thank you to my readers for the idea!
Photo is courtesy of Starfires’ Flickr Photostream, under Creative Commons Licensing.