So you want to be an adult Webmaster? Good for you! Running an adult website can be a rewarding and profitable career. In this series of articles, I will walk you through the creation of an adult Web site. We will cover Free sites as well as AVS and Pays sites. Let's begin...
I will go into detail on design, traffic management, technical issues, and my own philosophy. Hopefully you will get enough out of it to run your own profitable adult sites. Let me start off by going over the different types of sites you can make money from.
Pay sites are the most known sites among surfers. Anyone getting onto the Internet for the first time is likely to come across a pay site. Pay sites offer the surfer loads of great content to look at for the cost of a monthly subscription fee. Pay sites typically have an armada of affiliates that promote the site and generate traffic for them.
With a pay site, you control your own destiny. You can make changes to the site to increase your member retention. You set the pricing structure. You control the costs. It is completely up to you if the site succeeds or fails. Pay sites can generate a great deal of income. On the other hand, pay sites can be very expensive to operate, many pay site owners claim expenses in the thousands per month. They also require a good deal of maintenance.
Free Sites are the most common on the Internet these days. Free sites offer the surfer a small collection of free content to view in the hopes they will click on a sponsor link, and purchase a membership from your sponsor. Free sites are very easy to get started, they are very cheap to run, and they can be quite profitable. However there are a few drawbacks to running a Free site. You are at the complete mercy of your sponsor(s). There is a great deal of competition among Free sites, and there is a huge investment of time required to turn a profit.
These are sort of a cross between Free and Pay sites. AVS sites consist of a member's area that the surfer can access after they join an Age Verification System. Surfers like these because they are cheaper than joining a Pay site, and they have access to many other sites for the same fee. AVS sites are a bit more complicated to setup than Free sites, but they have the benefit of having you listed in the AVS directory. Most AVS programs have stringent rules as to what you can and cannot place in your member's areas.
Since they are the easiest to get started, I'm going to start by creating a Free Site, and then we will progress to the other types of sites. Before we go any further it is a good idea to discuss what we will need for a successful Free Site. To run an adult site you will need a Domain Name, a Web host, and a certain set of skills.
The Domain Name
Getting a domain name is the first step to getting your site up and running. When selecting a domain name look towards the future. You maybe running only Free site to start, but you may decide later on that you want to run a pay site. So choose a name that twill work for an adult website. There's a lot of discussion that all of the good name have been taken, well that may be the case for 1 word domains, but I've seen some really creative names lately. I think it's more important that you get a name that you are comfortable with; I mean, look at ebay! Once you get your domain name you will need somewhere to put your site. Lady Jag presents a good article on Domain Names.
The Web Host
Selecting a web host will probably be one of the most important decisions you will make when starting out. It is important to understand what is available.
» Free Hosting
There are many companies out there willing to give you free space to host your adult website. In exchange for free space, you agree to allow them to use a portion of your website for their own advertising. For many folks this looks like a great deal, but there are down sides, other than the loss of advertising real estate. Most Free hosts are slow to load, causing your surfers to leave your site and look elsewhere. Many free hosts are not around for long, meaning after you spent all your time getting your site up and running, you may need to start over with another host. Many TGP, Link List, and Search Engines will not list you if you are on a free host. The Free host may place ads that are irrelevant to your site on your site confusing or perhaps scaring away your surfers.
I would not recommend using a free host, since there are plenty of great paid solutions available for as little as $20 per month, and you will easily make this much per month to cover the cost. Check out Stephen Yagielowicz' article on Free Hosting. Virtual Hosting is by far the most popular means of hosting available.
» Virtual Hosting
Virtual Hosting is by far the most popular means of hosting available. With a Virtual Host, your site shares a server with other web sites. Virtual hosting can run anywhere form $20-$500 dollars per month. There are hundreds of companies offering products that will suit your needs. Virtual hosting comes in 2 primary flavors Unix and NT. When it comes to adult websites, there really is no choice. You need to go with Unix hosting, Unix offers the tools, and security required in an adult site. When you select a Web host, be aware of what you are being offered. When choosing a Web host look for one that can offer good connection speeds, and little to no down time. Mike Palmer gives a good overview of Virtual Hosting.
» Dedicated Hosting
Dedicated hosting allows you control of your own server. You can add domains, run scripts, whatever, with out worrying about other folks sites sharing a server with you. Of course this comes at a price. Most dedicated solutions run between $500 and $1000 per month. Still nothing beats a fast dedicated server!
For most adult sites, a Virtual host will do just fine. In the future as you start to run multiple domains, you may need to move to a dedicated server, but chances are, by then you will be able to afford to anyway.
All right, you've got the domain name, you've found a good host, now what else will you need? Well to start it would help to have some basic HTML skills. If you don't know what HTML is, find yourself a good HTML book and get real cozy with it. While you don't need to be an HTML guru, it helps to know your way around a web page, and HTML is the language of the web.
Last you will need patience, dedication, and above all a good sense of humor! It's going to be a long hard road ahead of you. The money at first will be little to non-existant. But if you stick with it, you will see the checks get bigger and bigger!
In my next article we will start building our Free site! Stay tuned!