What's Wrong With This Site? Need Some Help!

24 replies
Hiya -

I've got a site that's been up for like a year...I kind of let it go.

I have 643 hops to a CB offer and 0 sales.

It's way more than that, but that's as far as CB analytics goes.

So...opening the kimono here...

What should I do with this site? Where do you think it's falling apart?

Advice on what to do with it?


I have my armor on...let me have it... :-)
#site #wrong
  • Profile picture of the author Ross Cohen
    Site doesn't look half bad. First tip: "cloak" your links. Right now they look scary and will make a lot of people not want to click them. There are many Wordpress plugins to make them look, for example, like "mysheddesigns.org/visitsite/blah-blah-blah"... or "blah-blah-blah.com".
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    • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
      Cool - I'll cloak the links right off. Thanks for that!

      Now... since it's not half bad...tell me about the half that IS bad. :-)
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      • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
        @Jared - I want honest opinions! Obviously I've got something wrong... so the truth is what I need...

        If it is screaming "I'm selling you something!" then I need to change that - good advice.

        Keep it coming! I love to be able to scrape a little coinage off this thing...
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  • Profile picture of the author JaredWCavalieri
    I personally think it looks like a sales page, as opposed to a blog which is what i assume is what you were going for. I went into it with a customer mindset and my first instict was alright whats he selling. Other than that, its well put together, maybe just make it more personal, a pic of "you" building a shed. How much fun you had doing it as a family project as opposed to just having a shed built. Not trying to offend, just my honest opinion. Hope it was helpful.
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  • Profile picture of the author Studio13
    If your getting 643 hops, and no sells I think you're having a issue with message consistency.

    Here's what I noticed... the "promise" your link makes is to deliver the design for the shed you used. When they get to the clickbank money site, the headline reads: "16,000 Woodworking Plans and Projects!" — nothing about a shed in the headline.

    Further down on the page yes there are pictures of sheds, etc., how it's far too complicated and quite honestly, my initial impression is that 16,000 woodworking plans is overwhelming. I want maximum 3 blueprints to choose from, based on pictures of the finished projects. Not 16,000 — wtf, it would take me a half hour to find the one I read about on the sales page.

    And so I would consider finding another CB affiliate if that's possible. One that only sells shed designs, and than add pictures of sheds that are actually sold in the design package. Make the message on your page — and the CB money site's page consistence.

    My .02
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  • Profile picture of the author jpboxersox
    First of all the on page seo is not optimized correctly. That is if you trying to get a specific keyword ranked? You really have no heading tags and the description tag is Projects, Tips and Tricks...how are you trying to market this website? Ted's woodworking plan made me money in the past so you picked a good product Also, try using pretty links instead of those long ugly urls when people hoover over the images.
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    • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
      Good catch jpboxersox! I know SEO well.... that home page meta desc is a big fat oversight! Great catch. Better go through all the basics while I'm revamping...

      @Studio13 - yeah, I was thinking that too. I'll look into custom landing pages.

      Thank you all - this is exactly the stuff I needed.... more? :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author Studio13
    ...and another thing. If you can get a boat-load of images of finished woodworking projects that are in those 16,000 plans you might have a content package that will get you much more traffic. One page dedicated to just dog houses. Another to bird houses. Another to tool sheds. Another for benches. Another for chairs. Etc. Actual pictures of the finished projects, and links to the blueprints would be your hop.
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  • Profile picture of the author georgedinmore
    My suggestion would be, turn it into a squeeze page, and deliver two or three blueprints for free. Then promote blueprints and tools in the email sequence.

    For example, someone comes to your site, and sees blueprints for free for a shed. Then gives those to them. You can then go on and say thank, etc. Give them some pointers on building. Suggest this tool from here or there, which will make building it easier. As well as try selling them on more blueprints for other stuff, like bird tables, wardrobes, tables, chairs, etc. Sky is the limit.


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    • Profile picture of the author StuW
      Originally Posted by georgedinmore View Post

      My suggestion would be, turn it into a squeeze page, and deliver two or three blueprints for free. Then promote blueprints and tools in the email sequence.

      For example, someone comes to your site, and sees blueprints for free for a shed. Then gives those to them. You can then go on and say thank, etc. Give them some pointers on building. Suggest this tool from here or there, which will make building it easier. As well as try selling them on more blueprints for other stuff, like bird tables, wardrobes, tables, chairs, etc. Sky is the limit.
      I'd personally go the other way, give away a blueprint for a bird table or a chicken tractor, save the big stuff to sell later.

      My new site is up and running, see how you too can use social media to create campaigns that go viral on Twitter and Facebook.


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      • Profile picture of the author georgedinmore
        Originally Posted by StuW View Post

        I'd personally go the other way, give away a blueprint for a bird table or a chicken tractor, save the big stuff to sell later.
        Good point, never thought of that.


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      • Profile picture of the author Mark Andrews
        In a nutshell Bredfan...

        ...you're not connecting your benefits to your target audience.

        Your main headline at the top needs ditching. Switch it out to your single biggest benefit and get the rest of your sales copy flowing around this one single biggest benefit. Sock your readers between the eyeballs with an irresistible offer they cannot refuse.

        In essence any kind of woodworking plans are very similar to selling hotsheets / short reports. If you've got 16,000 of these and the full rights to sell them, I would have a look at starting to list them all on your website. Sure, it's going to be a mammoth undertaking but it could pay you enormous dividends in the future. (Or plan B, see below for another suggestion).

        Check out these websites to see what I have in mind for you...

        Home plans, house plans, home floor plans

        Cottage, cabin & small country home plans

        Now each of their woodworking plans can be considered to be a hotsheet. Display these similarly on your own site either individually or bundle them up together into various packages, for example: 320 x 50 individual packages and sell each package of 50 plans separately on it's own.

        If you do this... you should start to see a lot more sales coming in as your appeal to this target market has broad reaching positive effects.

        If you sell each package of 50 plans for lets say $47 (less than $1 each) and sell 100 of each package during the course of your first year, you could be looking at gross sales of approximately...

        $1.5 million annually.

        I think what you need to do is to back to the drawing board, think about your site design again and what you're trying to communicate upon it. If you get this right, chances are, you could make a small fortune each and every year from this single business alone.

        If you need a hand or advice, feel welcome to give me a shout.


        Mark Andrews
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        • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
          Wow Mark - thanks. My head is going in an all new direction with this now. I may just PM you... careful what you offer up!

          One complication is that I do not own the product - so I am limited in terms of what plans I can offer in what bundles. The strategy will have to include preselling and sending prequalified prospects to the sales site...
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  • Profile picture of the author revstan
    Let people fill their e-mail in on an opt-in list in exchange for a blueprint, maybe let them choose from 4-5 prints. Keep it on-site.

    Simple Stan

    "No man is taller than when he bends down to help another in need"

    - Simple Stan -

    Making the path to income in internet marketing less complicated and as easy as 1-2-3 !

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  • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
    Okay - fixed the Home Page title and meta description. Working on link cloaks.

    Emailed advertiser to see if I can get some samples and a few other questions.

    I'm also going to load up a new theme that has a big sign up form on the home page, with the content below.

    Once I do, I'll update so you can see if I have it right...
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  • Profile picture of the author seobro
    The web site looks pro. However, there is a problem - the price. $67 is a lot of money. Hey, that is more than we spend on groceries. What does the person get for all that green. Basically, he gets an e-book that costs you next to nothing to produce and deliver, but he must spend a lot of time building a shelter which is hard work I tell you.

    Let me let you in. Here is a secret for you. Most people who buy plans are dreamers and not doers, who like to buy plans for a flying saucer, and anti gravity machine, a teleporter, and a time machine even.

    They want pretty pics. Yeah, and a low price.

    Doers typically down load free plans off the internet and try to get cheap lumber from a demolition for their projects - two very different groups. Sadly, most dreamers are poor. Hey, you can sell them on a 99 cent e-book so they can dream of far away voyages.

    Typical plans that sell well are experiment flying machines that work on solar energy.
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  • Profile picture of the author travlinguy
    The problem is it's a blatant ad. End of story. If you think you can throw up 250 words of text and get a reader to bite on a $67 sale, think again. And that's with what looks like a decent sales page. You need to offer a lot more value with your preselling before people will trust you enough to buy.
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    • Profile picture of the author capitalalchemy
      Perhaps it's partly the time of year. I know that at least giving how cold it is out right now where I live I wouldn't want to start working on a shed.

      Also, I've found that personally rather than trying to tell a story to sell a product, providing good information and having some banners works better.

      I would tell a story with sales copy for a product that I had developed, but just be helpful with a content site like this.

      Cloak the link, keep the banner you have in the right-hand corner, and perhaps add a 2nd banner at the bottom of each post.

      OR, if you like the idea of the personal experience post, perhaps refer people to it in your informative posts.
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    • Profile picture of the author escribe
      Bredfan, I think you've done a pretty good job with your site. One thing I would change though is the "Featured Shed Designs" title and just remove that and replace it with your main headline of how you made your own shed inexpensively. And I would only have one photo of a shed so that the reader is impressed to read further based upon the image presented (your shed). I think this would make your post more personal and more convincing.

      Also, you should have an opt-in. Put it on the top right of the page, replacing that other 16,000 design image. Offer something of value like step-by-steps of how you built your shed with pics or like some others mentioned 3 easy shed blueprints you can download now.

      Another thing you could change is the white font in your header graphic. It's a little hard to read. Although not a major issue, it would improve your site.

      Overall, I think your site is pretty good.

      Hope this helps!

      Content Creation and Publishing Design Specialist!

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  • Profile picture of the author DreamWarrior
    It's pretty hard for someone to openly ask for help and wait for the criticism like you have. Hopefully my criticism is only taken in a positive way.

    My thoughts: Maybe watch how you word or write your descriptions on the site.

    For example: "I think I paid like $40 bucks for the entire thing."

    You might want to write it without the 'like' or 'bucks' in it. Make the site a little more professional. You want people to feel relaxed while reading your posts rather than concentrate about how things are written. Have it read along the lines of: "It cost me no more than around $40 to build the whole shed."

    When selling, you want people to feel comfortable with giving you money. If they don't understand you or don't trust what they read as it may sound dodgy, it will be hard for them to part with their money.

    Hope this helps. And a great start by you so far.
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    Turn this into a lead generation campaign, email them good tips, and drive your subscribers back to your Clickbank product page - with the affiliate link cloaked.
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  • Profile picture of the author Robin Blinds
    Change the colour of your links to a different colour i.e. blue instead of black.
    Traffic + Conversions = $$$$

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    • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
      I have to say WF - I am overwhelmed with the amount and quality of the feedback. @Dreamwarrior You're right - it is kind of hard to throw yourself at the mercy of mass criticism, but the WF has proven to have productive and awesome people who genuinely want to help each other. (George Lynch is freakin awesome BTW.)

      Since I wrote this - the advertiser has sent me a sample plan to use as a giveaway, and provided a couple other resources for me. That, in conjunction with the style and organizational feedback....well, maybe I can make something of this site after all.

      THANK you all for your help. The feedback here is going to help me with other sites too...
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  • Profile picture of the author Bredfan
    Hi Everybody -

    After all the great feedback, I made some big changes. Thanks again for those who offered some advice.

    So.... Here are the changes I made based on YOUR help:

    - Created large Opt In for above the fold Home Page

    - Added new Copy to Home Page Top to call out benefit

    - Re-wrote home page copy to focus on delivering information and benefits - increased word count to 550.

    - Created bottom of post sign up form

    - Created Sidebar form for all interior pages

    - Cloaked the remaining sidebar Aff link

    - Rebuilt the header so it's easier to read

    Now.... better?
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