In this post, you will learn how to create a website like 9gag using a few simple free and paid tools to successfully complete your project.
Step 1 – Buy a Domain + Hosting
You will need to acquire a short yet brandable domain name for your new website. Brainstorm a bunch of domains then try to select a domain that is:
- Easy to Remember
- Avoids any trademarks
- .COM extension (or a country level domain if you want to target a certain country)
Once you have found a good domain, head over to Hostgator and see if it’s available. You’ll get a free domain name and unlimited hosting space for just $3.96 per month.
Step 2 – Purchase a 9gag clone script
In this step, you can choose which type of CMS do you want to build your website on? The two most popular 9gag like websites are build using either:
- or PHP
Build your website using WordPress
WordPress is a world class CMS using mainly for blogging but can easily manage your viral media sharing site. I used this 9gag clone script for WordPress. Check out my article on 9gag WordPress themes for more options.
If you choose WordPress for your website, check out my Free WordPress Setup service.
Buidling your website using PHP
Another way to mange your site is by using a simple PHP based scripts. I recommend this 9gag clone script for PHP.
Step 3 – Find images to upload
There are plenty of ways to find images that related to your niche topic. You can perform a simple google search using “your keyword + images” to get started. If you want to quickly build a following, then you need lots of images. Consider buying an image pack or searching forums for free image databases. Finally, social media is another great way to find images. Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ and Reddit are filled with proven viral images that your visitors will enjoy.
Step 4 – Setup your social networking profiles
Social media is a really important factor in website traffic so be sure to create social media profiles at the following sites:
- Facebook Fan Page
- Google+ Page
Step 5 – Drive Traffic to your website
Before you begin driving traffic to your website, make sure you have plenty of good content hosting and are able to support a flood of traffic. Your website should be able to handle a viral spike in traffic because it happens when you least expect it.
The best ways to drive traffic are:
- Social Media
- Email Marketing
For starters, each image post should have a clear title with a working URL. Post every piece of content to your social media networks including tags. Consider starting a cheap Facebook Ads campaign to attract visitors to your website. Start with a small budget then see if you can increase your Facebook likes. Facebook Fanpages can send you a TON of traffic forever. Finally, allow your visitors to enter their email address to receive updates on future posts. Email your users on a regular basis to drive them back to your website.
Step 6 – Monetize Your Website
Once you have some decent traffic, then it’s time to think about monetization. Monetization should always add value to the user, not take away from the browsing experience. Here are some recommended revenue sources:
- CPM Networks
- Content Lockers
For most 9gag viral sites, Adsense and other CPM networks are your biggest money maker. Your visitors want to be entertained, but they probably aren’t thinking about buying stuff. The key is to maximize pageviews on your site. The more pageviews, the more ad impressions you will get.
Well, that’s it! You have enough information now to start a widely successful website like 9gag. Please share or bookmark this article for future reference.
Tarik Pierce is a 15 year WordPress veteran. He writes about blogging, SEO, and personal finance.