Website Features or Function?
While brainstorming for an idea, it's very important you consider how you plan to drive traffic to your site or blog.
Getting traffic from search engines like Google, Yahoo, etc. should definitely be your goal because this kind of traffic is free and very targeted.
Also think about how people use the search engines. They type in specific keywords related to a problem, ask a question or search for some very specific information.
Your goal is to build a site or blog that capitalizes on these searches, then focus on expanding your site with additional features and functionality.
The Backward Approach
The reason I wrote this article is because many people start brainstorming about the actual features they want their site to have (a forum, reviews, chat room, user profiles, etc.) without thinking about how they will attract traffic.
It's important to note that features and great ideas don't draw in traffic from the search engines. You could have the best idea in the world but if you haven't created your site to make the search engines happy, then how do you expect people to find your site?
People certainly aren't going to just stumble upon your site by accident? And unless you have a lot of money to spend on advertising, it's unrealistic to believe that a good idea is all you need.
So in the beginning, you must focus on building a site that will appeal to the search engines rather than assuming a cool site with neat features will give you success.
Once you have the traffic then you start expanding, adding forums, site reviews and other types of features / user interactivity to make your site more appealing.
Watch My Video
If this isn't quite clear, then please watch my video because it dives a little deeper into the topic and emphasizes the importance of the feature vs. function issue.
If you can absorb the preliminary information on this site, you will have a huge advantage because most people rush and don't take the time to plan and educate themselves before they begin.
If your goal is to make money with a website or blog, absorb the content on this site like a sponge.