Hello fello BHW'ers, Before I even start my journey I would like to say that I have been trying to understand IM since over 3 years and I have been reading the forums, taking with people, watching videos all this while before I even decided to make a move with this journey. A few things that really came in between my ambitions is that I did not even have the bare minimum funds before so that I could start such a thing and I had the fear of starting and failing that kept me behind the fence. I come from a middle class family and my father owns a ayurvedic cosmetics business and everyone is like I should not concentrate on anything else except for the family business. But I have always had my dreams, I have wanted to earn on my own just like many other people who want to be self sustained. I never wanted to be just another kid in the block. I started as a content writer 4 years ago and I have been writing ever since. So finally after years of writing writing and writing, i realized that I had sufficient income pool to let me build a website and hire other writers to do the work for me so I could concentrate on my writing gigs along with the website plan. My parents donot know I am doing this and they do not even have a clue that I have been into writing for so long. For the matter, they do not even know that I actually earn my pocket money. I only work when there is no one around to see and after dark when everyone sleeps as I am afraid they will just pull me down if they knew I was spending my energy on something which they wont even care to understand. To start off, I want to thank BlackHatWorld for this imbalanced platform that they have made for everyone and people like me to learn from(unlike other forums - which want donot share any information for free). I have been mostly a silent spectator here all this while, reading, watching, trying to understand the terms and meanings, how things work. I also learned a lot from youtube videos. I want to make it clear that 5 months back, I didnot even have the proper idea of how a website is hosted and how themes can be installed - so you can understand the level of noobness I was at. However, those things I learnt from youtube. Thats about it for the introduction - sorry if it was a bit long, but I wanted to share with someone the things that are running in my mind, especially becuase I cannot share it with my family. My plans and how I executed them Two months back, I realized that I had saved around 500$ and I felt that It was time I jumped across the fence. So I sat down on the comp at night, trying to find my perfect niche. after a lot of thinking and brainstorming I came to the conclusion that I would be most comfortable working with a gifts niche, as there is lot more diversity and my plan was not to make a microniche website. I chose the gifts niche and my target for the first 2 months was to build a website that suggested the best christmas gifts. I planned the content strategy (as I am good at that and did they keyword researching with a premium software that I bought from my funds) then I bought a domain, hosting and premium theme for my website. I planned that I would have a authentic looking website so I never settled for anything cheap and I bought a lot of premium plugins as well to tweak it upto an authentic level. I decided that I would launch the website one 1st november and by that time, I would have atleast 30 posts of wordcount ranging from 500-2000 that would be based around my niche. I hired a few writers to do the writing work for me, but I realized that the outputs were not as good as I expected. After getting the content in drip feed, I started putting them up on the website and I came across many obstacles and challenges along my way but Google was my saviour and I found my way around. I optimized the website completely and designed the logo muself + wrote the legal documents and disclaimers and a few posts to cut down on the costs. I even had to edit and rewrite quite a few posts that were turned in by the writers as I didnot have the time to send them back for corrections as my target was 1st November. My expenses till this time: 1. hosting $72 2. domain $11 3. theme $53 4. plugins $50 (approx) 5. Content $200 With the content layed out I went around the internet and purchased a few images from various sources for the posts. I designed and optimized the images for the best page load speed. and did the site structuring. By 31st October I had achieved my aim of setting up the website. Then I went onto Amazon.com and signed up for their aff program and got my affiliate id. I made around 30 tracking ids for my pages so that I could track them seperately and I changed the links of all the places and did the internal site structuring on the last day. I noticed that I was running a bit behind my schedule so I hired a VA for $4 for 10 hours and made him do the website tags and basic formating and layout of the posts. I gave him a checklist of things he needed to check in all the pages like 1. Formating, Tags, Header Tags, Image Size, Nofollow all external links incase I missed somewhere. When he was doing that, I started placing and experimenting with Amazon ads and how I could place them strategically on my website. After I did all this, I realized that now I had to sign up for Google Analytics and Adsense and GWT and register my website over there. I had no clue for to go about the website registration and check my robots.txt and sitemap.xml so I got in touch with my hosting providers and they guided me through the process. Thats about it. With all this work said and done, I laucned my website on Nov 1 - 2 P.M My plans for promoting the website now - 1. I have decided to spend around $70 on the content this month (rest I will find time and write on my own) 2. I will invest around $150 on facebook advertising 3. I will use Google Adwords free voucher to generate traffic to my website. 4. I will hire the same VA for 2 hours a day for 30 days to make backlinks for my website. so that makes it $240 5. I am thingking of purchasing nohandsseo from BHW, so that will cost me around $127 I will keep updating my thread till the 25th of December and let you guys in on the details. Thanks BHW for making me capable of being able to find a way into this journey. I know that I must have spent a ransom on the website, but I have really long plans for it and I donot want to stop midway. I am not sure if I can post a link to my website here, but for some of you who might doubt that I have done this at all - w w w. t h e g_i_f_t_h_a_c_k . c o m Updates will follow soon. Love you guys.