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pros and cons of sitesell.com

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pros and cons of sitesell.com

Postby edwinnyc » Wed Aug 15, 2007 10:13 pm

Preselling what is it exactly and finding profitable keywords ...

SBI makes me feel like I should get their package and it costs $299 , can I do on my own what they are selling me on on getting high ranking on se's, and the traffic if so then how do i do it.
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Postby Oregon Coast Guy » Thu Aug 16, 2007 12:56 pm

It's so worth it. Lynn knows what a SBI fanatic I am. I've been using Site Build It! for over a year now and my site is doing so well. At a break-down of $25 per month, the product over-delivers in so many ways. One of the many cool things is that they continue to release more tools all the time with no extra cost to the buyer. The value is extraordinary!

I would never, ever build another web site without it. You can't do a bigger favor for yourself than getting one. If you want to hear more about my site, feel free to PM me. I can also give you a copy of "Make Your Site PRE-Sell" if you don't have it already. I love this book! :wink:
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Postby expatana » Sat Nov 24, 2007 4:04 pm

It has advantages and disadvantages. Let's talk about the disadvantages first:

1) It's way too expensive. Remember that it only provides you with one domain name, one site, for that price. Although it sounds reasonable averaged out at $25 per month, their fee is paid up front. You need to have $299 at once. They should be giving you at least two sites for that price, not just one.

That $299 is not a one-time fee; it's due every year.

2) As for the service, that *depends entirely on the niche chosen*. With them, you *must* choose a remote niche that not too many people are going to bother with, whether you're interested in it or not. Then, you must have the requisite knowledge because, like any other site, you're providing that brilliant content.

3) No offense to anyone who has them, but I hope you're doing your own design, because theirs is just awful. The templates are ugly and lopsided, and leave relatively little room for genuine tweaking. Mostly, they scream "beginner" -- which is the last thing you want.

Their take on that? Design doesn't matter in the least, it's the content. It's ok if the site is ugly if what you're writing is brilliant.

No argument on the primacy of content, it's king. But an individual design with an individual logo is a requisite part of building any business (online or off). It's a necessary part of *branding*, and helps you stand out, especially at the beginning when you're first seen.

It needs to be *simple*, no bells or whistles necessary; that is true. But I can tell an SBI site a mile away just by looking at it.

Example: I saw an SBI site several months ago, travel related, ranked on the first page of Google, a miracle with that topic unless it's really remote. So they do indeed do a lot of good SEO work. The content had all the required keywords present on each page, as they emphasize -- without which that ranking would have been impossible.

It didn't take me long to realize I could have (and should have) taken that subniche and improved on it. The content, even with all the required keywords, was disorganized and poorly written. And the design had that beginner SBI look, downright amateurish, although some color was added. Of course, I'm sure with its ranking, it got a lot of initial visitors.

But they didn't come back. It didn't take long for that site to disappear from the radar.

In other words, the spiders liked it; I as a user in that niche did not.

4) If you want a blog, they do provide one (and just one). Their own design, it's somewhat confusing for the reader. Now, we've talked about wanting a blog to look more like a website, but theirs looks so unlike a blog a reader may not recognize it as such and may not comment.

It shows just the title of the entry and the first sentence or so; the reader clicks to get the rest. Then it's confusing getting back afterwards.

They will not accept Wordpress (which itself has far more design options than an SBI-built site has).

The blog must be within the site, not separate. I think webmasters should have that option. Some may want or need their blogs to be separate entities, like Lynn.

5) An SBI site is not owned by you, only the content is. They own the site, the domain, everything else. You'll have a hard time if you want to move from them later. I think this is even the case if you provide your own template or design the site from scratch, which you can do.

6) Related to this, they have both the domain name and the hosting. How many times has it been said elsewhere -- never, ever host your site at the same place where you registered the domain name. Why should they be any different?

SBI has a good reputation; in SEO, it's well deserved. Why can't we just buy that from them if we want? Like a lot of other companies, they should provide a kind of menu of services. If you want the complete platter, pay the complete fee. Otherwise, if you only want domain registration, or hosting, or a template (they only have one), or SEO services, etc., you should have the option of choosing. But they don't do it that way. You must pay this big fee for everything.

Advantages:

1) They let you design and build your own site if you don't like their template. I'm not sure if they'll help you with this. They may for an additional fee.

2) Their SEO work is second to none, as was said. So ... if you have a good site to begin with, well written, well organized -- for the reader as well as for the spiders -- then you will do well with them if you have chosen a remote enough niche (not too many of them left).

You want the spiders to find you; they'll do everything possible to help you there. And you want your reader to bookmark you and come back; that's your part.

Good luck!
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Postby Oregon Coast Guy » Sat Nov 24, 2007 4:59 pm

Have you owned a SBI site? I'd love to see it ;)

Just to address a few things:

"....you *must* choose a remote niche that not too many people are going to bother with, whether you're interested in it or not...."

I'm not sure where you got that. My site is about the Oregon Coast, which isn't obscure in the least. I'm presently getting about 430 guests a day and they seem to love it, based on the emails I get. SBI stresses that you love what your niche is. If you don't love it, how can you passionately write about it? That makes no sense.

Some of your negatives are unfounded. The price is dirt cheap for all a person gets. It's not a typical host. Everything is imported into databases, allowing it to do what it does. You can pay for space to host your site on, but you're not getting much more than that. SBI is an investment, not an expense to me.

I had my year paid off in 4 months and was making profit from there and it's much sooner than that now. There are reasons that it's a year up front, rather than month to month. People who pay month to month are less likely to take it as seriously as someone paying for a full year. It's a mindset. The many tools that work together are continually being expanded and upgraded with new ones added on a regular basis. All at no additional cost. Their newest tool, Content 2.0, was a couple years in the making and does cost a bit additional. The tons of extra bandwidth and server power it takes to run that single module is extraordinary, so I can understand the extra cost. Plus, Content 2.0 is totally optional. Not needed. Just a great tool.

Can you tell me that all of the sites here look like a template site? http://samples.sitesell.com

I've been a professional webmaster for many years and, after finding SBI, I will never do another site without it. Why waste all that time and energy on the tech stuff (which I'm very familiar with) when I just need to concentrate on content and then go outside and play? ;) I enjoy the creative freedom I get, rather than the monotony of dotting all my "I"'s, technically. I suppose if you want to be tied to your computer....

SBI has provided a real future for me, as corny as that may sound. You don't quickly turn up your nose to something like that.

I would rather have a site with traffic rather than a pretty, dazzling one that no one sees. Unlike a brick and mortar business, it's all about information, not location. That's the SBI difference. You supply your content, they do all the work behind the scenes.

Another proof of the quality of SBI is that it is now being taught in 19 accredited colleges throughout the US, Canada and Australia, with more jumping on board. http://conted.sitesell.com/

Their affiliate program is top-notch, too (I just got a $323 check yesterday). Just one more nice income stream for me.

Here's the latest video to show why I love SBI: http://www.livevideo.com/video/MillionD ... e-sbi.aspx

In my book, it's the cat's meow! :wink:
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Postby expatana » Sat Nov 24, 2007 8:11 pm

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:Have you owned a SBI site? I'd love to see it ;)


I can't afford them.

All my info is based on intense research and on SBI customers (and former customers) with whom I communicate. I believe in doing sound research, not just go on what they and their affiliates say.

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:My site is about the Oregon Coast,


And your content is top-notch.

Still, it's a very, very specific niche. I didn't necessarily mean literally remote in the geographical sense. You're very lucky you immediately hit on that open a niche in which you have expertise. Most of us are either ferociously researching niches that are too crowded or that no one else is interested in. You cannot control where your passions lie.

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:The price is dirt cheap for all a person gets. It's not a typical host. Everything is imported into databases, allowing it to do what it does.


You're getting one domain name, one site, for all that up-front money -- and then you get to pay it again next year. Don't forget: Most successful online businesses involve several (even many) websites.

Lynn is always making up new sites, just for one example. But who among us can afford 10+ websites at their price?

And what do you mean, "It's not a typical host"? No, it tries to do everything. And it doesn't do everything extremely well. It does SEO well. That's what they should offer.

And what is this importing into databases? What precisely does that mean to us?

I can get my domain name for cheap, my host for cheap (separate places a must!), THEN go for a company to do the SEO.

I'd consider using them (once I had the money) IF they let me host and register somewhere else. I don't want one company doing everything. That's a preference of mine; someone else may feel differently.

I want my SEO company to do the SEO, my domain name to be registered somewhere that does that, my host to do that, etc.

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:I had my year paid off in 4 months and was making profit from there and it's much sooner than that now.


You're very fortunate due to your expertise with that niche, but that will not be most of us. Nor is it most of SBI's customers, just the samples they talk about. Most of them are just like us. Remember, highly ranked in Google (and that's not all of them) does not mean the site is making money.

The bottom line: How much money are those nicely-ranked sites making?

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:People who pay month to month are less likely to take it as seriously as someone paying for a full year. It's a mindset.


It's *your* mindset. And you're entitled to your opinion on this as anything else. But I argue this one most of all.

A good example: I've wanted to take several IM courses, as I find no matter how hard I'm willing to work, I can't learn all this alone. But I don't have hundreds of dollars up front and it would take too much valuable time to accumulate it. I need to get started *now*. It's all getting more and more crowded.

One course offered a full scholarship to the applicant who gave the best answers to a series of questions. I won it. Now, according to your mindset (and it is *your* mindset), I wouldn't be as serious a student because not only didn't I have to pay for it up front, I didn't have to pay at all. ;-)

It's just the opposite. If anything, the fact that I'm on scholarship has made me even more determined to prove to myself and the instructor who offered it that I can make it. It would be shameful if I, the scholarship student, didn't apply myself. Failure may be an option for those other students (and believe me, they don't all attend every week), but not for me.

I was given an opportunity and to show my appreciation if nothing else ... I will do well. If I have to miss, I will spend twice as much time making it up. I may not make money right away, but I will do as I'm being trained to do -- no matter how many hours I have to put in.

There is no evidence whatsoever for that mindset. And if that proves to be their mindset as well, I want nothing to do with them. Most important is the practical aspect: Many of us are on day jobs that just don't provide for a lot of money up front. That doesn't make us any less determined. Period.

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:Can you tell me that all of the sites here look like a template site? http://samples.sitesell.com


Some do. You'll recognize them by all the white space on the right side. They look somewhat lopsided. That's the template being used there. The others, I'd be willing to bet, have been designed individually or with another template, as SBI lets you do (but they will still own it).

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:I've been a professional webmaster for many years and, after finding SBI, I will never do another site without it.


I'm glad you can afford to use them again and again. Most of us can't. If I get as good at keyword research as Lynn is, I'll want to do as she's doing: making more sites all the time. I'd be bankrupt if I used SBI for all of them.

Another affiliate of theirs, with whom I communicate regularly (and from whom I'll buy it if I decide to, his sales skills were great and he was open with me about what they will and won't do), admits that he definitely intends to use them again, but he won't necessarily use them every time. The cost adds up. It depends on the site. If it's a mini-site, or just a one-product page, etc., he says he can't justify the price.

Well, you all got some advantages and disadvantages. They have an excellent reputation. But like buying anything else where real money is involved ... do your research. And not just with them and their affiliates.

All the best,
Ana
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Postby Oregon Coast Guy » Sun Nov 25, 2007 12:31 am

Ana,

There really is no luck involved. If someone follows the Action Guide and puts their nose to the grindstone, the rest comes....period. My 18-year old son has started his first SBI site and he's doing really well.

That's the reason they have an unconditional guarantee. Follow the guide, do the work. Check my page at http://www.site-build-it.us and look at the guarantee offered. There is no risk. The only people who fail at this are the people wanting to get rich quick and then get frustrated because they don't get a windfall of money in the first couple months. This is a real business, not some flash in the pan scheme.

I think it would be pretty obvious to anyone that you wouldn't use SBI for landing pages and site's with only a couple of pages. That's like apples and oranges. I use CrystalTech for much of my couple page sites and landing page stuff. My main business is my SBI, my other streams of income lie elsewhere. My SBI site is far less work and far more successful, but its not luck. It's a way of doing things that works.

I know that you believe what you've been told, but you really don't understand what goes into it. There is not just people doing your SEO for you. That's a small part that the entire software and databases built around it do. Each part builds upon another.

Let me give you access to the forums and you can see what actual SBI'ers are saying, instead of getting your information second hand. Full read-only access. Spend as much time there as you want, whenever you want. Get it straight from the horses' mouths. See what they're saying amongst themselves. Check out Ken Evoy's posts. He's in there almost every day. It's the best support community I've ever been involved with.

http://forums.sitesell.com/

Username is romantic-oregon-coast.com
Password is romantic-oregon-coast.com

No luck involved. Have a groovy weekend

:wink:
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Postby expatana » Sun Nov 25, 2007 2:17 am

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:There really is no luck involved.


Not in most business pursuits, but in the case of keyword research luck enters into about 50% of it. And SBI themselves will tell you: If your passion and expertise happened to be in the South of France, or Spain, and not the Oregon Coast, believe me, you would not be nearly as successful.

Instead, your passion and expertise happen to be centered in your own back yard -- and not where a zillion other sites are clamoring for attention.

A small enough niche to compete, but large enough to get enough visitors. The passion and expertise need to be there. And you need an extensive personal connection to the niche to make yourself credible. In other words, you need to be doing what you're writing about.

Much of that is luck, my friend.

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:There is not just people doing your SEO for you. That's a small part that the entire software and databases built around it do. Each part builds upon another.


Again, not sure how that benefits the average user. How does that determine why using this one company for everything is such an advantage?

And my info is not all second-hand; I get much of it from current and former SBIers.

One more thing Oregon mentioned bears repeating: SBI does indeed encourage you to start slowly, not assume you'll make lots of money fast. I never said you could get rich fast, and in this I agree with them. They advise you to build your content and reputation before you even try monetizing. So, with them, you won't be selling right away anyway, not even affiliate selling.

(With that advice, I was surprised Oregon said he had already made back his fee in four months. SBI doesn't encourage you to go quite that fast.)

Ana
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Postby Oregon Coast Guy » Sun Nov 25, 2007 3:25 am

It sound like you won't take advantage of the guarantee. It doesn't sound like you'll look into the forums. All offers, it seems, have fallen on stubborn ears. It just sounds like an argument to me that you're determined to win, for some reason.

Either way, I'm done. I'll continue to help the people who want it, not the ones who just want to win.

I lose. You win. I'm wrong. You're right. Don't try SBI. You'll show me. :roll:
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Postby expatana » Sun Nov 25, 2007 4:32 am

Oregon Coast Guy wrote:It sound like you won't take advantage of the guarantee. It doesn't sound like you'll look into the forums.


Only goes to show how much some people know ...

1) The guarantee: I can't afford SBI anyway (I also need 2 sites, not just one anyway), so the guarantee is a moot point here.

2) The forum: I just spent approximately four hours in it.

No surprises so far. Time to go to bed. More later ...

Ana
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Postby cynthiap » Sat Dec 08, 2007 1:39 am

I disagree too that they are too expensive.

I have two sites with sitesell and two sites without sitesell.

I love sitesell.

You get so much for your money. You can't get all the services you get with sitesell for the price they offer. You're only paying $25 a month when you break it down. If you have your site elsewhere, you're going to pay close to $25 a month just for an autoresponder service.

You get all this at sitesell:

SEO
Hosting
Domain
Autoresponders
Many different web 2.0 options
Website builder
Submission to the search engines

It's great to have all your stuff in one place.

There are many different options out there that work. Sitesell is one of those great options.

It's really a fantastic program for a newbie. You will learn everything you need to know to build a successful site.

I woudn't go as far to say, that I would never use anything else, because I think at some point I'd like to try the static blog option for something. It's good to have diversity with your sites and try different things.

But Sitesell is a great program and well worth the money. I wouldn't dream of moving the two sites I have with them anywhere else. You really can't go wrong by giving them a try.

I wish they offered the option of making monthly payments rather than having to pay the entire year up front. That's my biggest complaint. But when broken down monthly, you can't find all these tools and services for a price that good.

Just my two cents.


:)
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Postby expatana » Sat Dec 08, 2007 11:37 am

I guess that was my main beef with Sitesell: Even if you can average out the services at a certain amount per month, you do not get to pay monthly. You have to have it up front, and a lot of people don't.

I too am investigating the static blog option. I really like it because it enables you to have a much more interactive site: a blog that looks just like a regular website. I'm not crazy about Sitesell's blog platform or design.

Ana
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Postby expatana » Sat Dec 29, 2007 3:03 pm

I've spent more time in the SBI forum. Since finishing my class, and coming to some realizations, I've decided that, before anyone decides to buy SBI, XSitePro or anything else to build their first site, they should invest a little in a week or so of Wordtracker and find themselves their first good niche.

Nothing's gonna get anyone anywhere without that first. Everyone who was successful with SBI or anything else, without exception, had a good niche going. You can succeed with them if you have that first. They can help you a little with niches, but ultimately you must be the one to do that research.

If you find that, in the end, your "expertise" (if you can call it that) is in something a zillion other sites are doing, or in something no one's interested in, neither SBI nor XSitePro is going to help you. Same if you've got credibility problems.

So ... regardless of which you decide on (or Static Blogging), get your first niche first. If you pay all that money for SBI and come up empty on the niche research, they can't help you and you've wasted a lot. It could take you longer than their 30 days to find this, if you're that determined.
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Postby expatana » Mon Jan 07, 2008 9:23 pm

I have bought SBI. I'm going to take the first 20 days or so for intensive niche research -- hopefully with their help. If I'm not able to find something with good potential in that time, I'll of course get refunded.

I'll still be on here reporting on that and communicating further ...

See ya,
Ana
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