I note there is a new website about where I live. Not about my house exactly. I suspect I’ll never merit a blue plaque. I’m talking about Lincolnshire.org. I’ve always felt that Lincolnshire was not as favoured with visitor information as it could be. I don’t even know why I was looking – I guess I like to find out stuff about my home town.
In fact way back when I first had internet access (dial up) I made a point of looking for Lincoln based websites. As I recall I could only find three at the time including Gino’s Italian Restaurant in the Bail which I remember as being quite good and thinking that it was quite enlightened at the time for a restaurant to have a site. Gino died last year but the restaurant is still going. I don’t remember what the other sites were – I lost the list of favourites in a pc upgrade/move sometime. Must have been a long time ago now (young feller me lad).
Although the web is a global phenomenon it very much applies to communities both small and local and there will always be plenty of opportunities to find niches where you can make a bit of cash. I’ve no idea how much money is made by Lincolnshire.org. It’s all down to advertising1 page impressions or click-throughs and referral fees for hotel bookings etc.
The key is clearly to make the site attractive and informative so that people will want to visit and more’s to the point link to from other websites. Lincolnshire.org could end up as a nice little business.
This brings us then to the completely new set of skills that a business owner has to acquire in this modern web based world. Not only does he or she have to understand the ins and outs of Search Engine Optimisation but putting together a website ain’t exactly plug and play. You can build very simple websites using tools provided by commercial web hosts (eg Lincoln’s very own WebHostingBuzz) or even use hosted platforms such as provided by wordpress.org but you will probably end up with fairly limited functionality.
So if you are a small business starting up you need to outsource your web design which of course you have to pay for. You can also pay for specialist SEO. It’s all cash out of the business before you even open the doors. Nothing new there then – all you are doing is replacing your shop fitting costs with different technical skills. Then it’s all about content – the modern shelf full of goods.
Kids grow up with this stuff. It’s their world; today. If you aren’t down wiv da kids don’t despair but you will have to work harder at it. Perhaps I’ll make sure one of my kids ends up as a web developer.
In the meantime good luck to Lincolnshire.org. Give it your support. Use it, link to it. Tell your friends and relations about it. It’s a great domain name and it deserves to succeed.
1 I’ve never considered carrying advertising on trefor.net but that is because I have a different agenda. I do link through to Timico wherever appropriate.
PS it was years before I actually visited Ginos and I was pleasantly surprised. Don’t leave it that long before visiting Lincolnshire – you can book through Lincolnshire.org 🙂
PPS It’s not my website btw 🙂