Want to make money from your Web writing? Create websites – for your clients, as well as for yourself. you can do this very quickly and simply. You can rough out a webpage in five minutes, using a tool like Weebly.
Weebly’s one of my favorite tools, because you can create websites in a just a few minutes. Get an idea, create a site, and you’re done. No fuss at all.
I’ve talked about Weebly before. From Instant Blogs with Weebly: Fun and Free:
Weebly’s big benefit is that it’s free. I do have a premium account because I wanted some of the extras, but it’s very inexpensive, particularly since you can host up to ten sites on one Weebly account. I have many hosting accounts, and Weebly’s a real bargain. (Disclosure: I have no connection to Weebly, I’m just very happy with the tool.)
Weebly’s especially useful if you’re into “newsjacking”. Basically newsjacking is what it sounds like: you hijack some of the vast traffic that’s flowing when a topic is new and hot.
One qualification: try to ensure that you grab a topic that’s somewhat relevant to your website, so that the traffic is targeted. A few years back, I newsjacked a topic which drew a lot of traffic, but that traffic didn’t do anything other than increasing the cost my client’s Web hosting. Ouch.
That said, you can do very well with a website which takes little time to create. From How I received 8,000 visitors per month using Arrested Development & Weebly:
Time spent creating the prototype: 4 hours, including design assets and content creation
Key stats: 25,000 visitors in 3 months
Use Weebly to prototype clients’ (or prospects’) websites
A website’s a property which you can exploit.
Web editors like Weebly are wonderful for mocking up fast websites for your clients. You set up the site in Weebly, so that your client knows how the content you’re creating will fit into his new website.
Since a website is a property, you can also create Weebly websites and sell them. Let’s say that a business in your local area doesn’t have a website. You can prototype a website quickly, and fill it with some placeholder content.
Contacting the business, and sending them a Web link to the website you created “just for them” is more effective than asking them to hire you to write Web content for them. If they don’t want the site, no loss. Someone else will.
It may take you an hour or two to write some fast content to create these kinds of sites, but the results are well worth it. Some of my writing students have been using this strategy for years to get ongoing writing gigs, because the website’s new owner often needs you to create fresh content and manage the site.
When your client buys a “5 minute” website from you, you have several options. You can buy the client a domain name, and use that domain on Weebly hosting if you have a Premium account. Alternatively, you can archive the site into a Zip file, and upload it to another host. Leaving the website on Weebly is the simplest option.
Set and forget websites: create a website, and let it earn for you
Once you’ve set up a “5 minute” website, you don’t need to pay much attention to them, if you own them. I don’t do much with my WritePreneur website on Weebly, it’s just another asset. You’ll find that if you’ve targeted the website effectively, you’ll get traffic, especially if you link to the site from social media now and then.
You’ll find lots of ways to use the sites too. A couple of my short story writing students have set up Weebly websites, so that they can add the URL to their ebooks. With a mailing list in place, they’ve got everything they need to build a loyal base of readers.
Creating fast websites is a good way to make money from your Web writing, in many different ways.