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Thread: How To Choose Keywords for Your Local Business

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    On the other hand if no one is really seeing it that first month, the delay to make it better probably doesn't hurt. I think there are a number of factors involved. How important is it to get to market right now? How incomplete is the site? The site does need to meet certain minimums or it'll turn away those early visitors and may not get a second chance to get them back.

    At the other end you can't sit back and wait until the site is perfect, because it never will be. Most people won't notice the small imperfection here or there and all the time the site isn't live it doesn't have any potential to generate business. There is a time when you have to say it's ready and launch.

    It's not always an easy question to answer for when to launch. There are businesses that rushed to market with a poor site that was panned and they never recovered and there are business that waited too long and missed their opportunity while someone else launched and took over the market. Part of being successful is knowing when it's the right time to act.
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    VG, you're right about all of your comments. The concept described in the article was not about rushing through and putting out a poor product, nor was the alternative waiting and putting up a perfect product. It was about the areas in-between. That is, not pouring large amounts of time and money into features without seeing what the market is really looking for. It's not about a formula that can apply in every situation, it is just something to think about.

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    Funny. I completely missed the link to the article. I was mainly responding to your and Kristine's post.

    I agree that somewhere in the middle is the right approach. You definitely need to have a good product on launch, but at the same time there's no reason to try and cram in every feature in the world.

    You can look at Apple and Google in the context of when to launch.

    Google's practice has been to launch everything as beta and see what sticks with users. If anything the've leaned toward to the rush to market side and because of that some of their products haven't gone anywhere. Take Wave for example. I think it could have been a very useful product for certain things, but it was released without any thought to how real people would use it. Had Google spent more time working out some things it might still be with us.

    Apple on the other hand tends to lean toward the other side where the foundation of their product is concerned. They typically release something that may not have every feature imaginable, but it's usually something where the underlying structure has been made as perfect as possible. Steve Jobs famously rejected 2 very close to ready iPhones before approving the 3rd. It's hard to imagine Google taking that approach.

    Both companies are clearly successful though, which shows there's some latitude in the in-between.

    On a smaller scale there's a training course for creating training courses called Teaching Sells. Brian Clark of CopyBlogger fame is one of the people behind it. The approach they teach for creating the courses is to not have it all finished when launching. Put up the basic framework for the course and have early parts of it finished. Then open the doors to a small group of people. As those people work through the course learn what it is they want from the course and then produce the content. That way you let the market shape the product.
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    Over the weekend Seth Godin published a post titled, When "minimal viable product" doesn't work that fits this discussion. He's talking more about software than a website, but I think his points still apply.

    His basic argument for why this approach might not work is that when you first launch there's no one there using the product, no community around it, and so no feedback on which to improve the product. Because it will take considerable time to get the feedback you may either give up or move on to something else before you ever learn what you hoped to learn.

    He's suggesting that launching minimally is going to work best when you already have a significantly sized user base from which to draw in order to get that initial community around your product.
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