Obstacle Blaster was started as a blog in the spring of 2011. The name came from a friend who told me that the fresh and encouraging way that I write has helped her overcome a number of life obstacles. She said it directly: “You should start a blog called Obstacle Blaster.” I was intrigued. I checked to see if the URL was available. It was. I bought it and Obstacle Blaster was born.

As the reader will learn from the My Why page, a passion rose up inside of me to help others when I realized I was an “ok” writer and that I had made a lot of mistakes and missteps that others could benefit from. But this page is about taking a behind-the-scenes look at all the components of this blog. Maybe someone can benefit by learning from my mistakes and missteps in this endeavor as well. Want to create your own blog? Here’s how I made Obstacle Blaster.

Obstacle Blaster is built on the WordPress platform.

It is a Pinnacle Premium theme.

For most of the time I have operated Obstacle Blaster, I have tried to get the most for the least; create the best quality presentation for the lowest investment possible. That has garnered mixed results. My advice to anyone with a desire to create an information based website that will ultimately sell products – things like e-books and audio books – I do not recommend going about it the way I have.

The name of the game when you are selling information – heck, even when you are giving it away for free – is credibility. And frankly, when your website’s overall presentation looks anywhere between crappy and passable, trust me: it is not passable; your credibility level with your prospective customers is low.

One really good barometer for how credible you and your website is believed to be by the public: how many readers and discovering you, finding that the information you offer is truly awesome, and deciding to subscribe? This is also an unbiased indicator of your online marketing and whatever search engine optimization you have brought to bear. And if you have nailed down the latter, and if the information you offer truly is awesome, you have better invest in the relatively small extra amount of money it will take to get your presentation looking like a million bucks.

Once you have gotten your feet wet and researched all the elements you want in your site (including examples of sites that have close to the look and functionality you would like to achieve at your site), you need to invest in whatever it takes to get it done. I advise against doing it piecemeal as I have done. It will take you longer to get where you want to get and the journey will be unnecessarily frustrating. Again, that’s been my experience and therefore that is my advice.

Next time, I will add detail about stock photos, fonts and blog post length.

Jim Aitkins