Setting SMART Goals for Your Website or Business

December 14, 2007 - Written by Gyutae Park  

goal.jpgDo you have goals for your website? If not, you are missing a critical step in your journey to success. It amazes me how people start websites without having any real goals they are striving for. Many take the “whatever I can get” mentality and go forward thinking they can make millions from an online venture. However, without effective goal-setting, your site has already failed. In this article I will detail the important components of an effective goal using the SMART acronym. I’ll also share with you Winning the Web’s own set of goals so you can use it as a guide.

Specific
Goals need to be specific in detailing what you are trying to achieve. Otherwise, it is easy to become wishy-washy and get sidetracked by distractions that come your way. Be as specific as possible with your goals. Example: “I will create a how-to guide with 10 useful tips for model airplane building.”

Measurable
Your goals also need to be measurable so that progress can be tracked and monitored over time. Vague and immeasurable goals are discouraging because you never know how you’re doing. An example of a goal to avoid is something like “I will make the best model airplane site in the world”. How do you measure best? You can’t. Make sure your progress can be measured with hard facts and figures.

Achievable
Although you want to stretch yourself and reach high, you don’t want to make your goals so high that they will only lead to inevitable failure and disappointment. For example, a goal like “I will gain 10 billion RSS subscribers for my blog this year” is not only impossible but crazy. I don’t even think there are 10 billion people in the world using the Internet. Find a happy medium and work hard to meet your attainable goals.

Relevant
Tie your goals closely to the topic of your site. Doing so will enable you to focus your efforts to succeed in your chosen niche or platform. For instance, a blog should be more focused on RSS subscriptions, comments, and community building than a static resource site. Plan your goals accordingly.

Time-based
Assign deadlines to each of your goals. This will motivate you to take action within a predetermined time frame and to strive for results as soon as possible. Challenge yourself to be more efficient by including the “when” in your goals.

Winning the Web’s SMART goals
Below are some of the goals for Winning the Web as a top Internet marketing blog.

  • Attain 1,000 RSS subscribers and $1,000/month in advertising revenue by July 2008
  • Post at least once a day with each article having an average of 25 comments each
  • Be cited and linked to from all top resources for making money online and Internet marketing

These are just a few of the goals I envision for Winning the Web in the near future. By pushing myself and working hard to attain them, I’m on the right track to see success. Let’s see where this blog is in 6 months. What goals do you have for your own site?

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Posted in Articles, Business Motivation
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Comments

21 Responses to “Setting SMART Goals for Your Website or Business”

Jason on December 14th, 2007

My first goal is to get through the initial phase of setting up my blog. Then I’ll be sleeping at 8 a.m. rather than being the first one to read your blog in the morning, lol. Honestly, with this being my first real attempt at starting a blog, my first goal is 100 subscribers. If I get to that point, I’m a very happy man :-)

 
sylv3rblade on December 14th, 2007

Wow. I never thought I’ll see my professor’s lesson on the net. To extend the thought, SMART can also be applied to your daily life, work or even hobbies. I use it mainly to focus on what I plan to do rather what I’m currently doing.

 
Sly from Slyvisions.com on December 14th, 2007

Back when I had my first goals, I actually tried to achieve them as soon as I could. Because of it, I barely got to sleep when I needed it. So it’s a really nice that you pointed out to set time-based goals.

 
Gyutae Park on December 14th, 2007

@Jason
The initial phase of starting up your blog is probably the hardest and most time-consuming. However, it’s also the most important step that will help in planning out the goals of your blog. Good luck with your 100 subscribers. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be there in no time.

@sylv3rblade
Haha, SMART is actually a commonly used acronym for goal setting. I just thought it would be helpful to relate it to Internet marketing. It can definitely be applied in other parts of daily life like you mentioned.

@Sly
So did you end up achieving those goals? Otherwise, you must be very sleep deprived.. :)

 
Tevin Anderson on December 14th, 2007

That’s odd. Because I’ve never heard the SMART acronym before…

I like it! I just realized that I have set personal and financial goals. But I’ve never written down and elucidated my blogging goal! I will certainly sit down tonight and do so.

- Tevin

P.S. I just made my first profit online. Read about how I accidentally made $88.50 with online affiliate marketing.

 
sven on December 14th, 2007

Good pointers. After rebuilding my site from yearlong inactivity, I really lost focus. This here reminded me that I should do a checkup of what I want to do and achieve with my refound blog. *Mental note: done* *Mental sidenote: redo in 1 month* ;)

 
Gyutae Park on December 14th, 2007

@Tevin Anderson
Having goals is extremely important when starting any blog – especially if you plan on making money from it. Congrats on the profit!

@sven
Goals help to prevent those times of inactivity because ideally they are time-based. Better late than never though.

 
John Cow on December 14th, 2007

We think the secet phrase is “READJOHNCOW”! Did we win?

 
Gyutae Park on December 14th, 2007

@John Cow
Final answer? :)
In the future, make sure you submit your guesses to the actual contest post. hinthint

 
Jason on December 14th, 2007

Bob,

That same guess hit me this morning. I also thought of “ReadCowChow” but then I thought , if the letters given are supposed to be scrambled, then he’s making it very easy on us so far with, lol. I also have about 10 other possibilities that I came up with today. Pretty sure one of them is it, but not quite worth using my guess at this point. If I’m lucky enough to get the letter I’m looking for tomorrow, I just might guess it u :-)

 
McBilly on December 16th, 2007

I very much like your Smart Goals. They are clear, concise and achievable. One of the main goal of my blog is to get more businesses to recognize my freelance web service.

Also, to achieve 1,000 rss subscribers and to get to the top 10k of technorati. That would be really cool! :D

 
dicky on December 16th, 2007

I had set my goal to achieve $1000 per month and 1000 RSS subscriber within 1 year. But look like it is hard to achieve that. Should i set a smaller goal first?

 
Josh on December 16th, 2007

Yeah, I think you should start off small.

 
Jerlene on December 18th, 2007

I always set easy goals that are reachable but never get around to reaching them.
Damn, I need a business partner…

 
Nick on November 21st, 2008 Subscribed to comments via email

SMART goals have been around for a while, and they do serve a useful purpose. The problem we see is that when followed too closely, people get stuck at the “attainable” part and as a result, under-commit in order to be able to safely deliver. This often leads to low-ball targets and results. We recommend MASMA goals in that they embed the term “ambitious” and still aim at achievability.

 
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