Once upon a time we wanted to build a travel content website. We've written for lots of prestigious publishers, but when you write guidebooks you get paid once and that's the end of it. They call it 'Work for Hire'. Apart from one or two publishers, you don't get royalties. So you write your purple prose and then kiss the words goodbye.
We knew a few writers who had published their own websites, so we wanted to try it. But where to begin? You need a dozen different skills to produce a quality website, and we only had a few of them! We knew we could write, but even that wasn't straightforward. Writing for the internet is very different from writing for the printed page.
We started to learn about internet writing through becoming Feature Writers at Suite101, Mike writing about travel in the UK and Ireland and Donna writing on travel for the Southwest USA and Hawaii.
We entered the murky world of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and HTML (Hypertext Markup Language). They were both a long way from the world of travel.
We bought some website design software, Microsoft Expression Web, and scratched our heads as we tried to get to grips with it. Our first attempts at designing pages looked pathetic... as did our second, third and fourth attempts. We learned a little about domain names, and FTP, and sizing photos for web use, and Google AdSense, which made NoSense to us.
We realised that writing the site – the one and only thing we felt confident about – was only going to be 10% of the job, if that. We knew we were in for the long-haul, and even a primitive website looked to be at least 12 months away.
Then purely by chance we found a website that said 'Powered by Site Build It!' across the bottom of the page. The site looked quite impressive, so we clicked on the link. And our lives changed. We don't say that for dramatic effect, it's just a statement of the truth.
We took a look at this page of Successful Case Studies, with a very close look at the travel websites, naturally. It was this more than any other page that made us take SBI! (Site Build It) seriously. If they could do it, so could we.
And finally this page, on turning
your travels into an online business.
And after a day or two of mulling it over, and wondering what the catch was as it seemed too cheap to be so good, we went to the Order Page and signed up.
Within a week we had our domain name registered and our home page started, and within a few days we had several pages online.
That first site was Pacific Coast Highway Travel. It was so successful for us that we started a second travel website: this one, Greece Travel Secrets.
The main difference between Solo Build It! and other website building services is this. Other services will let you build your own website easily. What Solo Build It! does is teach you how to build a commercially successful website. There's a world of difference. If you just want a website and don't care about making money from it, use WordPress. If you want to learn how to make a website that makes money, do what we do and use Solo Build It!
Mike Gerrard wasn’t sure what to expect from a holiday on Symi, in the Greek islands, but what he found was lots of local feasting, dancing, and music.
Greece Travel Secrets helps celebrate a feast day on Astipalia in the Dodecanese Islands of Greece, for the Assumption of the Virgin Mary into Heaven.
During Easter on Rhodes Greece Travel Secrets publisher Mike Gerrard travels from Lindos to Kattavia to visit a monastery and spend Easter with a Greek family.
Walking on Paxos is the best way to discover this tiny island south of Corfu in the Ionian Islands, with its wooded hills and terraces of olive trees.
Easter on Symi is a wonderful Greek celebration and one of the best times to visit the little gem of an island a short ferry-ride from Rhodes in the Dodecanese.
The best time to visit Mykonos depends on if you want crowds or quiet, heat or cooler temperatures, all of which affect when is the best time to visit Mykonos.
The rules that all international passengers must follow to travel to Greece have been extended until October 8, the Hellenic Civil Aviation Authority (HCAA) said on Friday. The rules are part of the H…
Delta Air Lines on Sunday announced that it will launch a new service from Boston in the United States to Athens, Greece, in the summer of 2022. Launching on May 27 next year, the new nonstop service…
UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) is urging the British Museum to reconsider repatriating the Parthenon Marbles to Greece and to enter talks on the issue, Greek…
The epicenter of an entire religion and of the ancient Greek world, and a spectacular place of natural beauty, Mount Olympus is finally, officially, a National Park.