Posted by: jpluna | July 21, 2008

“Would You Like a Site with that Blog?”

Golf fashionista Patricia Hannigan (known to many as "Golf Girl")
posted a tweet on Twitter today asking how she can best build a Web site
around her blog.

She’s in the same boat as a lot of folks with successful blogs who are now asking, "Dude, where’s my Web site?"

Many bloggers want the full Web site presence so they can have:

  • A fully branded home page with room for larger than life pictures
  • Pages with fixed views over products or services
  • Strong and focused landing pages for online marketing promotions like Google AdWords, targeted email communications, and widget clickthroughs

How you integrate a Web site with your blog depends on:

  • Type of site (e-commerce, vanity site, etc.)
  • Type of blog hosting company  (Blogger, TypePad, WordPress, etc.)
  • Your Web site goals and objectives.

Based on limited information, I suggest Golf Girl configure her site and blog in a way similar to marketing guru Seth Godin.  Godin has one of the top blogs on the Web but he also wants to promote his array of marketing books.

The following is my suggested architecture for Golf Girl:

  1. Leave the existing The Golf Girl blog alone except for adding a couple of links to the new Web site
  2. Create the main Web site which prominently includes a link to the blog.  On Godin’s site  you get to click on his head to jump to the blog
  3. Figure out what you want users to do on the site (example, buy Golf Girl’s upcoming book) then clear a path to those key actions
  4. Pack up your key Web site elements in a widget then make it available to the world so they can add it to their blogs and sites.

So there you have it, one way to set up a new site to support your pride and joy blog.

You can follow Patricia Hannigan on Twitter at @golfgirl.

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Responses

  1. There are a million “blog+forum” “websites” out there. Why not go a step further and differentiate your site from the cruft by investing in a real portal solution? There are countless options such as CommunityServer. Even then, the canned sites all feel pretty much the same. If you really want to stand out, I think it’s worth investing in customization. Add some special features that no other competing sites in your category have. A great example is the mileage database at greenhybrid.com. Or the bands list at thereminworld.com. The biggest key is to listen to your visitors – ask them what they want and provide it. Prioritize based on the volume/passion of responses. Focus on features that keep your visitors coming back for more – especially those which build community.

  2. Hi Joe, one of the biggest constraints for Patricia was that she has an established blog and doesn’t want to disturb it.

    So the community portal idea, as you suggest, would work but only if it could “wrap” around the blog.

    For folks looking to start off with a strong presence and have the ability to choose their blog domains and site domains, a community site can be a good option.

    -Jesse Luna


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