Just starting with SBI

by Dennis
(Sheboygan, WI USA)

Just starting with SBI (Site Build It!)

Hi Angie,

I'm just starting with SBI and happened to have found your website in Ken's Ebook on pre-selling, and your website looks great.

I've been with SBI for seven months now, and I'm still struggling to get through the tons of information presented. It seems that whenever I turn around there is another Ebook to be read.

I got through days 1-5, and now I'm starting to work on content as suggested in Day 6, but I'm also spending time viewing other SBI sites for inspiration as to how to lay out my site.

There isn't a day that goes buy where I don't get discouraged wondering if I'll ever get a site developed, and If I'll ever make a dime from it. I feel like quitting so often, but with the time and expense I've already put into it, I just keep plugging away at it.

I'm a retired Photographer, so I decided to build a site on how to start a home photography business. So far, all I have is my home page, and I'm in the process of writing the "About Me" page. Things are going really slow.

If you would like to see what I have done so far you can view my page at photography-home-business.com.

I don't know, It seems like I should have more pictures or graphics, or it seems to wordy. My coach thinks it looks good, and so does my girl friend.

If you would like to look at my home page, and leave me know what you think, that would be great.

I think being able to communicate with other SBI'ers is a benefit of itself. Thank you for the time.

Sheboygan, WI USA

Hi Dennis,

Thanks for visiting my SBI site, www.chocolate-candy-mall.com and for your very kind words. Keep in mind that this site is 4 years old (as of December 2010), so it wasn't built overnight! :~)

Let me start by saying - DON'T QUIT! I know I'm shouting, but I wanted to be sure you heard. ;) Too many people give up the fight in the early days of site-building because it is all so overwhelming.

Trust me when I say that it WILL get easier. The more pages you build, the quicker you'll be able to do it. Pretty soon you will be able to add fresh content to your site without agonizing over every word and minute detail. That's what it sounds like you are doing right now.

I looked at your home page and it looks wonderful. Quit second guessing yourself and move on. The beauty of controlling/running your own website is that you can easily go back and change or edit a page in the future
if you decide to take a different approach, reword something, add more photos, or otherwise dress it up a bit.

I know what you are going through. My current site look and feel is not at all what it was when I started this site 4 years ago. It was very basic and looked so plain and dry to me.

On top of that, when I was just starting with SBI, I was panic stricken that my words weren't compelling enough and actually embarrassed that someone might find my site by accident and think it was awful.

Now that you have made a start on content building, just focus on that exclusively for a little while till you get at least 20 or so pages up. Don't worry about making them perfect. Just get them done.

Remember, this is a subject that you know a lot about. I believe if you will just write like you are talking to a friend who has asked you a question about a particular concept (keyword phrase), you'll be churning out pages in record numbers.

I LOVE your site concept. It's got so much potential, both for helping others start a photography business and also for drumming up more local customers for your own established photography business. Excellent potential.

Again, I can't stress enough that you don't even consider quitting. You've taken a long time to get through the first five days of the Action Guide, so you may be feeling the added pressure of making money in a certain amount of time.

Everyone works at a different pace, but I don't think anyone really starts making a regular income from their SBI site until they have plenty of content built (at least 100 pages). Don't let that discourage you. Let it encourage you instead. You are on the right path and the worst is behind you - learning the basics.

You WILL make money with your site if you just forge ahead and start taking that valuable knowledge in your head and transferring it to the pages of your SBI site.

When I was just starting with SBI, it was my goal to earn a couple hundred dollars extra per month to be able to spend on presents for family, etc.
I had no expectation that I would end up with such a fantastic income and five beautiful websites only a few short years later.

I praise the Lord for His blessings on my efforts and I'm so thankful that I stuck with it and put the effort into following the Action Guide day by day. I love SBI (SiteBuildIt)!

Looking forward to watching your site progress over the coming months!


Site Build It!

Comments for Just starting with SBI

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Feb 06, 2011
Using the SBI Block Builder
by: Angie

Hi Kelly,

Sorry to hear you are having such a struggle to understand and use the SBI block builder.

You mentioned that you've watched the videos and read the Action Guide and helps, so I guess you are "missing it" as you asked. :) That's okay. Just don't give up. Once you get it, you'll be surprised at how easy it is.

As I told the person in the last post, the best place to get help quickly when you are stuck is the SBI forums. However, I'll try to explain it to you a bit here, but I'm not sure if I can make it any clearer than the AG does.

The current block builder is NOT a WYSIWIG editor. If you want to use a WYSIWIG editor, you can do so, and then upload your own HTML instead of using the block builder. When you are in Site Central, instead of clicking on "Add a Sitebuilder Page" you would click on "Upload Your Own HTML Page."

In order to format content within the text blocks of the block builder, you need to know the html tags for bold, italics, lists, etc. and wrap the content in the tags yourself.

I use the block builder for all of my sites. I write my pages in notepad because you don't lose the formatting once you've written it. I wrap the words I want bolded in html bold tags, etc. I can't illustrate it here because it will just implement the html and you won't be able to actually see the tags. ;)

However, if you click on the little ? next to the text block in block builder, it will give you a pop up help file with the list of the most commonly used html tags so you can use them if you like.

After I have the page written in notepad, I just copy and paste it, code and all, into the appropriate blocks in the SBI block builder.

It really isn't difficult once you do it several times. I didn't even know what WYSIWIG was when I started out, or HTML, or anything else to do with site building. My only guidance was the Action Guide (videos and written) and the SBI forums.

I took it step by step and made sure to click on the help ? marks to get all the info and details I needed.

It might encourage you to know that the SBI block builder is being updated again this year and will soon be more like a WYSIWIG editor from what I understand. I don't know exactly when the new version is being released, but I think it's going to be even more user friendly and faster.

There is no place in the SBI promotional pages or materials that suggests the current block builder is a WYSIWIG editor. I think you may have assumed that it was based on your own previous knowledge or experience. They have in no way led anyone to believe that is the case.

I would just encourage you to take each step of the process slowly enough to really "get it" so that you are sure to build your site correctly. Also, use the SBI forums. They are invaluable. I learn so much there every time I visit.


Feb 05, 2011
SBI Block Builder
by: Kelly

When I copy and paste anything from txt or Word it loses all formatting, spacing, bold, italic, etc., and there is no way to add formatting to SBI block builder that I can see.

Isn't there, "What you see is what you get in SBI? If not, that should be emphasized before people sign up and read hundreds of pages and watch hours of video, and then find SBI does not support WYSIWYG like any modern site building company would.

Am I just missing it? Do I have to make a pdf file of every little block and then import it into every block?

No one answers the phone at SBI. It has been busy the many times I have tried.

Thank you very much for any assistance.

Dec 15, 2010
Using SBI's Block Builder
by: Angie

Yes, blockbuilder is the form that you fill out to build a page when you click on "Add A Sitebuilder Page." After filling out the top part with the keywords, title, etc., you then use the drop down menu to add "blocks."

These blocks could be text blocks (where you would copy and paste the text/html you've created), graphic blocks, link blocks, etc.

It makes it really easy for people with no coding experience or website building experience (LIKE ME) to build a website quite easily.

Even though we have both learned some html coding, we are still using the block builder. It's good for everyone who is just starting with SBI to use the block builder in the beginning. It really trains your brain to build pages correctly, particularly for the search engines.

Some people "graduate" to using an html editor and they upload their own html completely without using the block builder. In that case, instead of "add a sitebuilder page" you would click on "upload your own html page."

There is more information on this in the Action Guide videos, etc., if you decide you want to go that route in the future.

If you have more questions regarding the specifics of using SBI effectively, you'll get the best answers in the SBI forums. They are invaluable.

All the best!

Dec 14, 2010
question on Block Builder
by: Anonymous

I have another question Angie, and since you mentioned block builder, I'll ask you.

I probably should know this, but what exactly is bock builder?

When I go to site central, and go into edit home page, or add a page, is this form block builder?

If so, is it used by just adding text that I copied and pasted from a text document file?, and when I do the content in HTML, it becomes an HTML document?

I here the words block builder every now and then, but I really don't quite understand what they're referring to.

Can you make this clear for me.

Thanks Angie

Dec 14, 2010
Just Starting With SBI
by: Angie

That was great that you taught yourself some html even though you are just starting with SBI. I waited until I had quite a few pages built before I actually tackled more than the most basic commands.

But, eventually I did start picking up and using more and more. You're right. It is much easier and quicker to position images and other things when you know how to use html.

I still love and stick with the simple block builder, but it's amazing what you can do by just learning some of the coding.

It does make page building much quicker in the long run. I actually keep a little "cheat sheet" for each site in a notepad document so that I can easily copy and paste particular strings of code that I know how to use but don't have memorized. :)

Keep up the good work!

Dec 14, 2010
Thanks Angie
by: Dennis

Thanks Angie for the encouraging words.

Yes, the hardest part is behind me learning the first five days, but now I'm trying to keep up with the technical aspects of the learning process such as getting photo's on my pages, links to other pages, and so on.

I think after I do it a few times I'll get the hang of it.

Right now, I'm laboring over the "About Me" page. I feel that would be a good page to do next, and introduce myself to the world.

This page is difficult for me to write, even though I know a lot about me, I have to decide how many paragraphs to write, and that I don't deviate from the subject of "me" by including paragraphs that could be used best on some other page.

I think Ken said it best in one of his ebooks, "Write something down on paper...Anything...just write, and then organize and consolidate the information afterwords", and that's what I'm trying to do.

Actually, the best time for me to get the words flowing into my head, is when I'm lying on the bed with my eyes closed just thinking. When I get an idea, I'll rush over to the computer, and compose a paragraph

I taught myself the basics of HTML, and wrote my homepage entirely with HTML. I don't know if this is necessary, but it seems like HTML has
some advantages over regular text, especially when it comes to adding photographs to a page.

thanks again Angie for your encouragement, and that you liked my Homepage.

I'll keep plugging away at writing content, and someday I can say, look at me, I have 50 pages written.


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