opinion

Inevitable Evolution

Joe D

Target your traffic, build site credibility, and brand - three major elements important to today's successful Web development.

A few years ago when the adult Internet was new there was plenty of traffic. New surfers were getting online access every day and shooting down the Information Super Highway. As Julius at F.U.B.A.R. likes to say, the InterWeb was booming. Of course it was touted as a great way to expand your intellect, learn about new cultures and stay on top of current events around the globe, but a vast majority of those new ‘Netizens were coming online for one thing – easy access to adult entertainment.

Back then the generally held idea was to “build it and forget it.” Webmasters would build site after site, just setting them out on the Web like ships out to sea. It didn’t matter what the surfer wanted – webmasters produced whatever they had to offer. There were a few niches to choose from, but webmasters rarely paid attention to their traffic in terms of finding out what was motivating surfer activity. It was supply and demand – millions of new surfers demanded adult content, and a few thousand webmasters around the world worked to deliver it to them.

A popular concept was to build sites “like 7-11s,” putting one on every virtual “corner” so that by sheer mathematics sooner or later you would generate a sale based upon a limitless volume of eager consumers that happened upon your site. The surfers' wants and needs were completely irrelevant to the equation! The webmaster just built sites around the content that he or she had available - and there wasn't a lot – take it or leave it.

You hear it at every show, some webmaster saying that “those were the days,” but the smart webmasters – the ones who have survived the last decade and adapted and improved their businesses to remain consistently successful over the years – know that things are actually much better today. Sure, the volume of naive new surfers has dwindled dramatically and been replaced by a newer, more savvy consumer that knows how to find “free porn,” knows about circle jerks, and can navigate his way to highly targeted niche sites that fulfill his needs and desires.

Because of this “evolution of the surfer,” the webmaster – or Web developer as they are known more often today – has had to adapt and make changes as well. In today’s online environment, survival of the fittest has taken on a whole new meaning Instead of just building it and forgetting it, Web developers need to understand the wants and needs of their target audience and supply them with the content and services required in order to make the sale, monitor statistics and trends, and respond to changing preferences and technical advancements.

This evolution will continue, and so will today’s Web developer evolve and adapt, because the latest generation of surfers knows exactly what it wants.

Further Reading

Overcoming the Savvy Surfer

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