Being a webmaster means running website(s) online, which gets you responsible for marketing, content creation, maintenance etc required to maintain a website. Before you start your journey as a webmaster, you should know there is no such thing as becoming the next millionaire by having a website. It takes a lot of efforts, dedication, right decisions to have a web presence that could possibly help you quit your current job. So if you are tempted by those late night television justmyfitness commercials, first thing to do is take it off your head.
Lets see first what are the roles of a webmaster.
* Design and development of website
You don’t need to be a web designer and developer for the design and development of website really. You can always hire somebody to do the work for you, if you have money. If you don’t have money, you have to learn. In my opinion basic HTML knowledge is a must thing for being a webmaster; it not only help on website development also help in SEO and many other cases.
* Marketing of website
Every website need marketing. Without marketing nobody would find your website within millions of websites. If you think you just have to create a website and people would flock to check out your website, you are wrong.
To do effective marketing you need to learn Search Engine Optimization, SEO. Although it sounds complicated it really isn’t. A good place to start out reading the Google Seo Guide. Google it you will find the link.
One big part of SEO is link building. Its the process of getting links for your website from other websites and thus getting your website higher rank for targeted keywords. You need to learn different processes how you can get links from other websites. Classified ads, forum posting, social bookmarking, blog commenting, directory submissions are few to mention.
* Content creation
On some websites you need to create content. On some websites content are generated by the user e.g. social bookmarking sites, forums etc.
* Maintenance of website
This includes adding new features, responding to user queries etc. Amount of work depends on traffic and type of website. Forums for example need lot of monitoring.
What type of website you can have?
Now that you know are the works involved being a webmaster, next thing would be determine what kind of website you want to have. This is a big decision. What type of website you can have depends on your budget, knowledge on web design & development etc.
If you have money or you know web design and development you can build complicated unique websites. In some cases there are free scripts available online for popular niches. One easiest type of website to have is blog. There are many websites that would allow you have free blogs. Whatever decision you make always make research how other people are doing in the same niche, plan on content and marketing etc. Its always better to plan ahead.
Whats needed to make a website live?
Other then design and development you need a domain name and a web hosting to make a website live. Most generic domains cost less then us $10. You can start out with shared web hosting unless you have a heavy load site. Shared hosting are really cheap these days, costs less then us $10 per month.
Lot of webmasters decide to monetize the website after it picks up. My personal view is “every penny counts”, I am up for doing it right from the beginning. There are so many ways you can monetize. Here are some common ways to monetize.
* Ad networks
You can use ad networks like Google AdSense etc.
* Selling ads by yourself
You can sell your advertising spots by yourself. Unless you have a high traffic website its not recommended.
* Other options
Depending on the type of your website you can sell membership etc.
As a final note, I think I couldn’t cover all aspects of webmastering here. There are sections like e-commerce and etc which need more elaborate explanation. I look forward to do that in future. Wish you all the best as a webmaster.
Sarah Parker is a moderator at Webcosmo Webmaster Forum [http://www.webcosmoforums.com]. Webcosmo Webmaster Forum is one of the leading source of information and help for webmasters. Join the Webcosmo Webmaster Forum community to learn and share with fellow