When it comes to hosting and setting up a website, many people focus almost entirely on the technical skills one needs to keep things running smoothly. At the very least, a webmaster needs to know how to use a computer and how the Internet works, right? Only sort of.
Thanks to CPanel, WordPress and a slew of other tools, very little technical skill is actually required to get a site setup. In fact, if you’re willing to use a free hosting service, you’ll only need the necessary to skills to fill out on online form to get a site up and running in minutes.
Instead, these days, a webmaster needs just as many personal skills as technical ones.
Rather than heavy duty tech skills, your site’s success could well come from your ability to reach out to people, both to seek help and to spread your message.
Here are some of the key personal skills you’ll need to set up and run a successful site. Without these, it is almost impossible to build a successful Web presence, much less keep one going any length of time.
1. People Skills
Though you can build and run an entire website without seeing another human being face to face, you will be interacting with them almost constantly. This involves everything from getting support at your host to help you out, all the way to how you promote your site and how you treat your visitors when they arrive.
The ability to talk with and relate to other people is crucial. If you can’t understand perspectives other than your own and see things through the eyes of another, not only are hosts going to find it nearly impossible to work with you as a customer, but you’ll likely build sites that don’t offer people what they want.
So, even if you do manage to build a good site, it’s not likely others will want to visit it.
Building a good site takes time. Sure, you can easily set up an account at Blogger, choose a theme and start blogging in about five minutes, but to build something unique and wonderful takes a lot of hard work and, more importantly, a lot of time.
For every overnight success story on the Web, there are thousands of sites that spent years toiling away, carving out a unique niche for themselves and building a modest but crucial audience.
But patience is required in other ways as well. For example, when your site is having technical issues, it takes patience to wait for it to come online; the same goes for getting responses from correspondence.
Being willing to wait, within reason, is a huge asset to any webmaster.
3. Research Skills
No matter how skilled you are at running and maintaining websites, every new site presents a series of challenges. Simply put: you’re going to have to learn new things with every project you tackle.
It’s important that you’re able to find the information you need, whether it’s technical information on how to get the site running, promotional strategies for your site or the types of content you should be creating.
The ability to research and learn things for yourself is invaluable when running a site and, sadly, it isn’t quite as easy as knowing how to use Google. Though search skills are a major asset, you need to know who to trust and where to get reliable information.
Try as you might, you can’t possibly know everything or be the greatest at everything that is involved in running a site. You are just one person and you have limitations on what you can do.
This means, at some point, you’re going to have to recognize the superiority of others at certain tasks and be able to trust their judgement. Putting the expertise of others ahead of yours isn’t easy, especially when you believe yourself to be very good at something, but sometimes you have to.
If you can’t learn to trust and put others ahead of yourself, you’re site is going to be limited by your skills and your knowledge. Learn to grow with the knowledge and experience of others and your site literally has no limits.
Humility is therefore vital because you’ll never acheive this lofty goal if already believe yourself to be the greatest thing in the universe!
5. Persistence and Dedication
Finally, the one thing that’s certain about any site you run long enough is that something is going to go wrong. From site outages, to posts that don’t go over well, you’re going to suffer setbacks and defeats. The key is to not let those setbacks stop you and find ways around your obstacles.
For a site to become successful, you have to find a way to work through a variety of problems; many of these can only be dealt with through hard work and determination. It’s the only way you’re going to be able to pull all nighters to fix theme bugs in a site that only gets a few visits per day or to spend hours crafting the perfect blog post, after the last one tanked horribly.
If you can’t overcome adversity, you can’t build a great site. So be ready to dig your heels in, roll up your sleeves and get to work if you want to make something special.
These are just some of the skill that you’ll need to make your site or blog great. Right off the bat, you’ll likely also need resourcefulness, creativity and a sense of humor.
In many ways, running a site, especially over a long period of time, is a true test of many personal skill and it takes a fairly well-rounded individual to make it work.
That being said, becoming a webmaster is often times a great way to grow our expand your personal skillset, learning how to be a bit more humble or how to improve your research skills.
So, perhaps, rather than looking at your site as a test of your skills, perhaps it’s best to look at it as a chance to grow them and better yourself as a person.
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