It’s something that hangs heavy over your head every day.
You’ve got traffic flowing to your site. You’ve built an audience and overcome the obscurity problem.
The number of links pointing to your site grows every day, social shares to your content rise with each passing moment, and you’ve recently started creating products and services your audience loves and buys.
It’s safe to say you’ve reached your hockey stick moment and handily solved the sustainability question, too. You are finally making money as a blogger (the impresario), which has allowed you to quit your job.
It is so satisfying after all you’ve been through. So what could possibly be bothering you?
It’s strange, but you feel like something terrible is going to happen … that all of this will be taken from you.
In my last blog post on this topic, I showed you the two concerns that will plague you in the first stage of becoming a content producer (and how to overcome them).
Now, in this second stage, you have a new set of concerns.
They boil down to these five issues …
1. Will your website crash?
You’ve seen it happen once or twice before.
A hotshot — someone with more than 200,000 Twitter followers or a Facebook page pushing one million fans — shares a link to a web page on your site.
And it’s like a whale striking the side of a boat.
The site blinks … and then lights out. Traffic is too heavy. The site can’t cope. So it sinks.
What most of those thousands of visitors saw was a white screen. An ugly white screen. They wandered away wondering if it was some kind of joke.
They replied to the hotshot who shared the link: “Bum link” or “Nothing but a 404.”
And the hotshot, while sympathetic to your predicament, is embarrassed. He or she will probably never share another link to your site again.
Traffic lost. Sales gone. Credibility damaged.
2. Does your website load fast enough?
Maybe it’s just a small fear. Maybe you’re simply concerned about your web pages bogging down while loading (Google considers 1.5 seconds slow).
We all know it’s silly, but people simply refuse to wait more than three seconds for a page to load. After three seconds, 40 percent of visitors will abandon the page.
So how are you going to compete with web pages that take less than one second to load?
Start by testing your site here.
3. Can you afford to have your website hacked?
A third concern website owners face is web security. And unless you work in the web security industry, this is strange territory for just about all of us.
But what we know for certain is that there are some bad guys out there who want to do naughty things to your site — just for the fun of it.
According to a 2013 survey by the National Small Business Association, 44 percent of small businesses have been attacked.
As a result, those companies paid out-of-pocket recovery costs averaging $8,700. Most of us don’t have that kind of money in our budgets.
Typically, if you’ve been a victim of a hack, you hire a security consultant to identify the source of the attack and purge any malware. Plus, if customer data was breached, you are obligated to inform customers of the intrusion and foot the bill for costs incurred.
In addition, many states encourage businesses to pay for credit monitoring for each customer. Not to mention you might face lawsuits.
At the very least, you’ll suffer a credibility hit when customers feel like you can’t protect the data they entrusted to you.
While you can certainly overcome such a customer breach, it’s best to prevent it from happening in the first place.
And let’s not forget about the threats to WordPress in particular.
4. Will Google punish you if your site isn’t mobile-friendly?
The answer is yes.
If your site isn’t compliant with their mobile-first guidelines, then you might see a drop in your rankings.
Use this Google tool to test if a web page is mobile-friendly.
As Google’s Gary Illyes said, “I think it’s pretty clear that mobile-friendly websites provide a much better user experience for the mobile users.”
This is consistent with studies that reveal “61 percent of users are unlikely to return to a mobile site that they had trouble accessing from their phone and mobile-friendly sites turn visitors into customers.”
Fortunately, becoming mobile friendly doesn’t have to be labor-intensive. Which brings me to my next point.
5. Can you do all of this without being overwhelmed?
The challenges of running a successful business are legion. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed.
For example, through our 2015 Cost of Doing Business Online Survey (full results will be released on January 5, 2015), we discovered that more than 40 percent of online business owners spend between two and eight hours each day working on their websites, but more than half of those who took the survey are either barely paying the bills or failing (soon to shut the doors).
Since you can only do so much in a day, you have to prioritize your tasks — generating leads and making sales top your list. Then other tasks, like web security or mobile-friendly design, fall to the wayside.
In fact, more than one third of online business owners said they don’t have a plan of action in place to take care of a hack or infection — and half said the reason is that they are new to web security. Another seventeen percent said they feel like it won’t happen to them. Another third said they simply don’t have the time.
In the end, what we’re talking about at this stage of the online business owner’s journey is performance.
Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to worry about web security? Whether Google will harass you? How to keep people from bailing on your site because it loads slowly? Whether your site can handle a sudden surge of traffic?
Spend more time in front of your audience — not your servers
You want to stop hunting down plugins (and wondering if they work). You want to focus on marketing and content creation. You want to stop worrying about your website and focus on your business.
In other words, you want to preserve your hard-fought-for revenue stream without having to spend your time staring at your servers. Instead, you want to be in front of your audience more often. And, of course, you want it all to be push-button easy.
You can have it that way when you work on the Rainmaker Platform.
It takes care of your performance concerns without digging deep into your pockets.
As Seth Spears put it:
“Copyblogger Media has created a game changer for bloggers and content marketers who want the ability to create beautiful membership sites, optimize and sell digital content, continue their marketing education, track their metrics, and never have to worry about the technical side of their website.”