ClassicBoardGamesHQ.com Launched!

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

good news everyone

The classic board games online shop ClassicBoardGamesHQ.com is now live and open for business! Go check it out, I’ll wait.

Also, why not like our facebook page and follow our twitter for updates?

Whew, what a ride that was going from nothing to launch in just 7 days (working one or two hours every day on it)! Here’s how I did it.

How I Launched An Online Affiliate Business In One Week Flat

I’m gonna keep this brief, as I’m expecting to write a much more detailed ebook/pdf about it once I’ve been running Classic Board Games HQ for about a month (so that I’ll have a little more information for you).

  1. I made a list of things that interest me. From this list I picked 3: board games, music and gadgets.
  2. I opened Google’s Keyword Planner and started searching for keywords related to my shortlist of topics. For each keyword I searched, I looked for something with Low competition and 1,000-15,000 searches. I didn’t want to get my feet wet in a highly competitive market, so I went with something a little more low key.
  3. For each keyword that Google suggested I ran a quick exercise to find the best keyword for me (at this stage with so little online business experience):
    1. does it have a domain available? (this helps SEO)
    2. is it a market that has a lot of products I can sell? (since I’ll be making money from affiliate sales)
    3. does it actually interest me? (I refuse to work on something I don’t care about)
    4. can I write about it? (my primary marketing will be inbound SEO)
    5. how expensive are bids for ads? (just in case)
  4. My favorite keyword / keyphrase after running this exercise on almost all the results was “classic board games”. It’s a low competition market, with cheap bid costs and 2,500 searches a month.
  5. With the keyphrase in hand, I purchased the domain classicboardgameshq.com. Classicboardgames.com was not available, but adding a small pre- or suffix works just fine for SEO purposes.
  6. Using the same hosting account on Bluehost I had for my personal website (the one you’re reading right now) I created a new WordPress website and assigned it to the new domain.
  7. I headed over to ThemeForest.com and purchased a wordpress theme that had both the look and feel of the store I wanted, and it included a bunch of woocommerce-ready plugins. Then I installed the theme on my new WordPress site.

    associates

    Amazon Associates gives you a special link with which you can earn a percentage of every sale made from that link.

  8. I made a small list of things, features and pages that I want in my store. With just a week to work with and The 4-Hour Work Week still buzzing around in my head (I’ve been rereading it and it’s friggin’ awesome) I applied the 80/20 principle to my list of features and got rid of 80% of them, deciding to focus all my efforts on the top 20%.
  9. I created an Amazon Associates account. Couple of forms and button clicks and I was an official Amazon affiliate.

Now I was ready to get started building my website.

  1. First I focused on adding products to my store. The idea was that, if there was one thing I needed in order to launch, it was product. So I started with that. I created four categories (board games, tile games, card games, and game accessories) and I added a few products in each category that spanned the spectrum of that particular category. In the future, I will add the in-betweens.
  2. Once I had 20 products I switched focus to the content of the website. Starting with the homepage I filled in any necessary sections (such as what ClassicBoardGamesHQ.com is) and got rid of all the “future nice-to-haves” (such as a slider showing customer feedback).
  3. Next was the logo. I needed something that would work for now, then I will upgrade in the future. So I searched images.google to find logos of websites and businesses that were similar in style, feel and market that I wanted my business to be. Taking inspiration from the various logos (and seeing what they were doing wrong) I fired up Illustrator and got to designing. An hour later I had my logo. If all else were to fail, I would have probably gotten a cheap one from Fiverr.
  4. Finally, I filled in the one page I felt was indispensable: the contact us page.

I finished all of this yesterday so seeing I had an extra day before launch, I went ahead and polished the site up a bit.

  1. I added the banner you see on the home page. This took some time of course, but it does add a lot to the website’s look and professional feel. And it will drive a few extra sales, for sure, not to mention helping SEO with it’s large “classic board games” keyphrase right up there at the top of the page.
  2. I added the blog. The blog would have been the next big thing to add, but since I had some time to kill I decided to launch it now. I needed 3 blog posts to fill in the homepage section nicely, but since I didn’t have time to write 3 posts, 2 of the 3 posts are simply shares of Wil Wheaton’s TableTop episodes. I would have preferred proper text blog posts, but those will have to do for now.
  3. And I added a bunch of new products to help beef up the store a little bit.

That’s It!

All-in-all I’m quite proud of having launched an online business from scratch in 7 weeks. Of course, what my online business experience lacked was made up for by my experience in web development, writing and graphic design, so that helped a lot.

This was a crazy week, that’s for sure and I look forward to what the future of Classic Board Games HQ (and mine) holds.

What would I change? Well, the biggest time sinks were adding all the products and finding a niche to get into. The niche I wouldn’t trust anyone to do for me (since only I know what I like and what I would want to work in), but next online business (if this does well) I’m definitely getting a freelance virtual assistant to add the products for me. I wanted to do that for this one, but I think the experience of doing it myself, even though it sucked the life out of me, was invaluable.

So here’s to the future. Wish me luck.

champagne

Now go buy something.


Amante Reale

I'm a freelance writer specializing in tech, gadgets, security, cryptography and cryptocurrency. Warning: I am armed with very strong opinions and I'm not afraid to use them. Hire me!