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10 Winning Strategies: Launching a Successful Website for Poker

Despite the recent shakeup in the US poker community, poker websites are still hugely profitable around the world. To get your piece of the pie, consider the following winning strategies on how to make a website in the poker niche:
Step #1 – Pick a Focus. When deciding how to make a website that’s tailored to a poker-playing audience, you’ll want to pick a focus – whether it’s poker news, poker strategy tips, poker recommendations or some other topic. Having a defined focus will make it easier to build an audience and achieve authority for your site.
Step #2 – Choose a Good Domain Name. Once you know what your site will focus on, choosing a domain name that’s easy to remember is critical. To get the best domains, use tools that look up recently expired domains and consider getting opinions on your finalists from members of your target audience.
Step #3 – Start out Strong with WordPress. Although there are plenty of platforms on which you can build your poker site, WordPress is by far the easiest to use and customize. It also offers some powerful SEO benefits, but make sure you lock your site down with the CAP recommended security plugins to keep your site safe from hackers.
Step #4 – Make Your First Impression a Good One! As much as we might try not to judge books by their covers, design matters – and this is especially true for websites, where you have less than seven seconds to convince a first time visitor to stick around. So spend some time choosing your WordPress theme, or consider paying a designer to create a customized look and feel for your poker site.
Step #5 – Content Counts. Although a good design is critical to getting people to stay on your page, it’s your content that’ll keep them coming back for more. Spend some time on poker forums to find out what kinds of information players are looking for and use this research to build interesting, informative content for your own poker website.
Step #6 – Get the Word Out. Just because you’ve launched a new poker site doesn’t mean that traffic will show up automatically. Get in front of your target audience by spending time in poker forums, on poker message boards or even in online poker games to begin building brand recognition for your site.
Step #7 – Monetize Correctly. To make the most money off your new poker site, look at other examples of sites in your niche. Are they monetizing with banners, in-text links or some combination of these strategies? What specific programs are they promoting? Although you’ll want to do your own split testing to find out which promotions are best for your audience, using existing sites as a reference for your own monetization strategies can give you a leg up.
Step #8 – Encourage Interaction. There are plenty of sites out there that present static content in the poker niche, so to take your site to the next level, consider adding interaction features that will help your visitors get answers to their poker questions. For example, consider adding a forum or a “Q&A” section to your site to keep your visitors engaged.
Step #9 – Connect Socially. To succeed in the crowded poker niche, you need to be like Visa and be everywhere your subscribers want you to be. Answer their questions on poker message boards (with a signature link pointing back to your site, of course!) and connect with them via Facebook, Twitter and Google+. When they have questions in the future, it’s your site they’ll be coming back to.
Step #10 – Split Test Constantly. According to Danny Iny, writing for the ClickBank blog, “The real secret to making big money as an affiliate is split-testing.” When it comes to monetization models or different ways of building engaging web content, split testing is a must. Don’t just assume you know what the visitors to your poker website want – test different variables until you know for sure what combination will lead to your success.
Are you thinking about launching a poker website? If so, be sure to check out the discussion on site building success tips in the CAP forums:
Site Building Success Strategies