Tag Archive for 'wordpress'

Niche Websites as Virtual Capital

Niche websites are now relatively easy to create and run without possessing advanced technical skills, thanks to modern web publishing platforms like WordPress. Combine this publishing ability with a little keyword research, basic SEO skills and an appropriate advertising or affiliate program and you have all the essential elements to create a largely passive income stream. Unsurprisingly there is a growing number of individuals cashing in on this opportunity.

As a result there is a growing marketplace for those wishing to trade these niche sites, fueled by those who specialise in creating them specifically with a view to sell them on for a quick profit (a practice known as “flipping”). Conventional wisdom seems to suggest a nominal value of around twelve times average monthly earnings – in other words a year’s income – for these sites. Judging by the number of those involved in this market, it must be profitable enough. But personally I would never sell one of my niche sites for so little.

I look at it this way: how much money would I need to earn and stash away in the bank or some other form of investment in order to generate a certain amount (for argument’s sake let’s use a figure of $100 per month)? At a rate of ten percent per year I’d need $12,000 in capital. Of course in the current climate I’d be unlikely to achieve a ten percent return without taking on a lot of risk – perhaps it’d be more realistic to expect a three or four percent return, in which case I’d need between $30,000 and $40,000 to generate that $100 per month.

On the other hand, using the “twelve times earnings” rule of thumb I mentioned earlier I could only reasonably expect to sell my $100-a-month site for around $1,200 – which I certainly could not invest to achieve a similar return. So the site is worth far more to me earning a steady $100 per month, year after year than the single-year value of its earnings up front.

Of course circumstances may force one to sell an asset for the sake of ready cash, but given the choice, my advice is always to hang onto these “virtual capital” assets for as long as possible.

How to install WordPress themes using cPanel

One of the nicest new features in WordPress 2.7 for self-hosted sites is the ability to install WordPress plugins directly from within the admin console – no more having to FTP files around (note that this only works with plugins that are listed in the WordPress plugins list – for others that aren’t in the list you still have to use the old method).

No such luck with WordPress Themes however; for self-hosted sites you still have to manually upload the files to your hosting account before you can activate them, although I wouldn’t be surprised to see this change in a future release – watch this space.

In this tutorial I’ll walk you through the steps to find and install a new Theme using the cPanel File Manager:

  1. Find a new Theme
  2. Download the Theme to your computer
  3. Upload the Theme to your hosting account
  4. Unzip the Theme
  5. Activate the Theme

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WordPress.com versus WordPress.org

Courtesy of 3nhanced.com
You may or may not have realised there are two different flavours of WordPress, denoted by the TLD extension. WordPress.com is where you can sign up to a free blog, hosted for you courtesy of Automattic, the company behind WordPress. WordPress.org is where you can download the software for use on your own web server – a so-called self-hosted installation.

So why two versions, and what are their different strengths and weaknesses? Essentially it’s a trade-off between flexibility and ease of use. For more detail, check out this WordPress support page that lists some of the main differences between the two.
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WordPress.com statistics plugin

I always recommend using self-hosted WordPress instead of the free version, as you end up having much more control over your site. However, one area in which I’ve always felt a bit cheated with WordPress.org sites is the lack of built-in stats monitoring. I guess this is why most bloggers end up using sites like Google Analytics to keep track of things – myself included.

There are also third-party WordPress plugins available which provide some of this functionality – I wrote about one such statistics plugin a few months back. But a couple of days ago I stumbled across another plugin – that provides the bona fide WordPress.com stats within a WordPress.org blog! Now, this is not a new plugin – it’s been around for a couple of years already by the looks of it – but it’s the first I’d heard of it.
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WordPress Translation plugin

Following on from my last post about translating your website, Dennis alerted me to the fact that there are WordPress plugins to do this too. Well, I don’t know why I didn’t think of that – I haven’t yet been able to think up a desirable bit of functionality that isn’t contained in a plugin – why should website translation be any different!

Sure enough, a quick search turned up several candidates. The Global Translator plugin looked the best, so I went right ahead and installed it – it’s those bunch of flags near the top of my sidebar.

country flags
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