This major upgrade took me 7+ years

This Major Upgrade Took Me 7+ Years | How to know when you need a new website

How to know when you need a new website

7+ years ago, my husband Ryan went on a weekend golf trip with his best friend, while I stayed home alone.

I thought about watching Father of the Bride for the 100th time —

But instead, I started this business.

I’d been thinking about shutting down my health coaching business anyway (in case you’re new here: I left the law to start a health coaching business first!).

It was time for me to go all-in on an idea I had for a legal templates business.

I’d already done the things I teach you how to do — an LLC, business insurance, and my business bank account — but I still needed a website.

With absolutely zero experience, I bought a domain name (samvanderwielen.com was easy to get LOL), a WordPress theme, and a logo with customizable colors.

As Ryan tore up the fairways, I threw on my favorite college sweatpants, brewed up an Earl Grey with almond milk, and dove deep into the world of HTML, WordPress themes, and design.

I even figured out how to setup a WooCommerce shop to upload and sell my legal templates.

Within hours, I made my first sale. To someone I wasn’t even related to!

Although it’s been upgraded over the years — the website I started back in 2017 was essentially the same one until….

TODAY!

I’ve written 537 blog posts, published 213 podcast episodes, and created 22 digital products since I launched my site.

My little DIY’d website lasted as long as it could. It was bursting at the seams with useful content that was difficult to find.

My business has outgrown its toddler bed and it’s ready for a full-size mattress of its own.

I’ve got a book coming out next year. (Get on the waitlist for my book When I Start My Business, I’ll Be Happy: A Practical, No-BS Guide to Successful Online Entrepreneurship)

We started the new website build over a year ago. Then my Mom died and I put the project on pause for 6 months.

🎉 We’re so proud of our brand new insanely gorgeous website (Open in a new tab for browsing after this blog post!)

My DIY’d version helped me get loads of sales, subscribers, and website visitors. She was trusty and reliable — without any fancy bells and whistles.

As you build your business, don’t worry too much about having the fanciest of things right now. You can grow as you go.

It’s not so important you have a beautiful/fancy website as it is that you actually have a website. Create and post content that gives people a reason to hang out on it, too (bonus points if you use SEO to drive them there).

Remember: the fancy website didn’t make my business successful. My business has just grown and evolved so many times over the years that it was time for a fresh start.

Cheers to upgrading when we need to – not because we think we have to (or that it’ll fix our businesses),

💬 Subscriber Question of the Week

Q:”If we use Thinkific, Kajabi, etc., do we still need a Terms of Use?

Yes! The ‘free’ terms of use (aka, contracts at checkout) included in nearly all tools…. suck. That’s an official legal term (those 6-figure student loans were so worth it!).

The included terms are woefully plain and are missing key provisions you need to be legally protected, like:

  • Required credit card language if you automatically re-charge people’s credit cards
  • Chargeback threat protection, so you can successfully defend yourselfIntellectual property protection so your students know they can’t lift your content or “get inspired” by it
  • Ways to navigate unruly students or bad community behavior so you control who has access…and so much more!

What you really want is a customizable, made-for-you contract or terms of use — not a plain-Jane one provided by a platform trying to protect its own interests. Get a Terms of Use template here.

Got a legal question? Submit yours here →

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On Your Terms® Podcast

🎙️ She’s Done It All! (And You Can, Too)

Sometimes you don’t understand why you’ve been through what you have — until you do. I truly believe all of our experiences end up being useful, in some way. Money expert, Jannese Torres, is a great example of that.

In this week’s episode, I talked to Jannese about:

  • The single best way to navigate imposter syndrome
  • How Jannese suggests you budget to start your business

The ways food blogging helped Jannese build a successful money coaching business

Listen to the latest podcast episode

✔️ Your Task This Week

  • Look around my new website! What do you think? hit Comment below and tell me one thing you love about it! I can’t wait to hear from you.
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