opinion

Automation vs. Human Touch

Stephen Yagielowicz

As a highly technically oriented endeavor, running an adult entertainment website requires its operators to perform a myriad selection of daily chores, tasks and tweaks — some of which lend themselves nicely to automation, potentially saving the site operator precious time and valuable money; but is handing-off your business responsibilities to some soulless automaton the best bet, or could specialists do a better job?

The question is not a new one and harkens back to the introduction of robotics on the assembly line and the resulting union uproar over the ending of skilled, high paying jobs.

Many operators have already embraced automation and are also predisposed to adopting technical solutions to their problems.

Guess what? Today, robots build better cars than people do; and they do it much more consistently and cost effectively: So much so that it would be extremely hard to imagine, for example, auto manufacturers giving up their robotics to go back to fully human labor.

For adult webmasters, automation has usually meant using time saving tools such as affiliate statistic aggregators to display earnings without logging into multiple programs; or for keyword analysis, content management and more.

Without automated tools to facilitate these processes, either additional staffing would be required — or in a one man shop, nothing else would get done due to time restrictions.

As such, many operators have already embraced automation and are also predisposed to adopting technical solutions to their problems; a predisposition that may be increasing along with the economic pressures that most website operators are facing.

For example, online graphical and coding tools have become so sophisticated that it is possible to build an attractive, effective, customized website — or individual components such as a companybranded video player — in just a few short minutes. While the results may not fit your needs as closely as a built-to-purpose solution, cost savings alone might make the difference between deployment or not.

For example, a high-end content management system (CMS) designed specifically for adult websites will offer the custom technical infrastructure and display capabilities your site needs in order to meet the expectations of today’s demanding audience. The cost for such robustly featured systems, however, may be prohibitive for startups or smaller sites.

As such, free Open Source solutions such as WordPress are getting a boost.

Not only is WordPress more than up to the job, many web hosting companies offer it as a “one click” install and include a variety of graphical themes for an individual look.

Sure, the high-end adult CMS offers numerous advantages over the generic solution; and indeed, its users may enjoy a competitive advantage due to its optimized technology, but the free system is far more accessible to budget-conscious entrepreneurs and perhaps “good enough” to knock down an otherwise insurmountable barrier to entry. Taking this further; truly custom coded solutions may or may not be better than using a canned script.

Likewise, good designers do not come cheap — but good designs might.

In fact, countless themes are available for WordPress, for instance: click a button and instantly update the look and feel of your site. Sure, an experienced designer could make something unique and perfectly tailored for your specific needs, but once again, cost and timeliness are factors.

For example, a custom logo could take weeks and hundreds of dollars to develop — or it could take two minutes at an online logo generation site, with no out-of-pocket cost. The difference in today’s market may be whether or not you have a logo; perfect or not.

The maturation of technology and the current market are combining to hurt some and help others. By finding the best balance of cost and effectiveness, you can put yourself on the right side of the scale.

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