A lot of beginners when they make their first blog or website tend to share it with their friends and family, although this might be a good idea at first but it rarely plays out how the webmaster wanted. Everybody is proud especially of their first website, letting your friends check out your website is fine but don’t expect any kind of results. Most people share their website with family and friends in order to get some traffic, and who knows even a couple of sales.
No, you should not share your website with your friends because you will increase your bounce rate, have bad user metrics, you will get bad feedback from your friends, you are actively increasing your own competition, you might get your Adsense account banned, and your website stats will be inflated. On the other hand if your friends and family are interested in the niche which you are targeting then you can go ahead and share it with them and you will even get some excellent feedback from them.
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The problem with sharing your website with your friends and family is that they are rarely interested in your website. They will check it out and even take a look at some of the posts although most of them tend to bounce off in a matter of a couple of seconds. The only time when you should share your website with your friends and family is when the website is about a common niche in which most of your family and friends are interested.
Let’s say you have a website about fishing and most of your friends and family also loves to fish, in this case, it is good to share your website with them as they will most likely read a couple of your posts and they will also give you valuable feedback. On the other hand, if you have a blog about drones and none of your friends and family own a drone and they are not even interested in drones than they will bounce off your website extremely fast.
You should treat your website as a business, it does take a long time to get any traction with an online blog or website but if you do things correctly than you will reap the rewards later. You can simply not rely on your friends and family for getting traffic to your website, and sooner or later they will simply ignore your requests for them to visit your website. If you are wondering if you should allow guest posts then check out my recent article Should I allow guest posts? ( Top 7 Hidden Dangers ).
High bounce rate
One of the main reasons, why you should not share your website with friends and family, is because they will bounce off your website extremely fast. Usually, they will browse around a couple of posts but they will rarely engage with any of the posts and usually, they will only take a quick look at them. Although the bounce rate isn’t an important SEO metric, but in this case, it is extremely important. As your website is brand new google doesn’t trust your website.
Once google observes that the people who you are associated with do not stick around on your website then this will be considered by Google a negative user metric. What google tends to do with new websites is to test out the articles by randomly ranking the posts for low competition keywords. If the user experience is good than google will accelerate this testing, which means that your website will rank faster, but if the wast majority of your traffic bounces off then it will take a lot longer time to rank. If you want to lower your bounce rate then check out my recent article How to improve bounce rate? ( Fast & Easy ).
Bad user metrics
The goal of any webmaster is to fulfill the user intent, and Google is extremely good at finding out if the user intent has been fulfilled or not. If a user comes to your website by searching a specific keyword and stays on the page for a considerable amount of time and then it doesn’t go to another site ranking for the same keyword than the user intent has been fulfilled. On the other hand, if the user comes to your website and stays for only a couple of seconds then this will make Google think that the user intent has not been fulfilled.
Generally speaking, if you share your website with a couple of your friends then you shouldn’t worry about it, but if you post your website on your personal social media account than a lot of people will check it out, and odds are that they are simply curious about your website and not about the actual topic of the website. This in turn will make them bounce off your website fairly fast which in google’s eyes is a bad user experience. If your website is brand new than odds are that it is in the sandbox, for more information on how to get out of the sandbox faster check out my recent article How to get out of Google sandbox? ( In 8 Steps ).
If you are new to blogging then you will probably ask your friends and family to give you some feedback about your blog or website. The problem with this is that for the most part, you will get bad feedback, as most likely your friends and family don’t know anything about blogging or even the niche which you are targeting. At that point, if you take into consideration their feedback is like the blind leading the blind, and it will not end well.
On the other hand, if you have a couple of friends who also have blogs or they are also interested in the niche which you are targeting then you should take into consideration their feedback. Especially if you have a couple of friends who are established bloggers, their feedback can be very valuable.
Increasing your competition
There are a lot of people who share their websites with other people, even help others out with their new websites. Although this might be a good idea in the beginning but once your friend’s blog is starting to outrank you then you will probably think that you have made a big mistake. Money tends to change people, a lot of friendships have ended simply because they were competing for the same keywords.
You have probably have seen a lot of people on youtube sharing their websites, this is only asking for trouble. If you are a beginner blogger then do not do this, as soon as somebody with experience sees your video and checks out your site he will instantly identify it as an extremely low competition niche and go for it. There are a lot of untapped niches if you are in a low competition niche and all of a sudden you notice a new website with hundreds of articles pop up then somebody with a lot of experience has started targeting that niche, and good luck outranking him.
Banned Adsense account
Even people who are not familiar with blogging tend to know that most bloggers who have ads on their website earn money by people clicking on the ads. Your friends and family probably want to help you out by clicking some of the ads, and the next day you find your Adsense account banned. This is called click fraud and Google will identify it in an instant and it will ban your Adsense account.
Once your Adsense account is banned there is nothing you can do, if you contact them you will just get a response from a bot, and it is extremely hard to contact a real person from Adsense. Even if you would manage to contact somebody from Adsense and try to explain to them what happened odds are that you will still not get your account back.
If you are a beginner blogger then odds are that you are checking your stats every day if not every hour in the search console, google analytics, and how your keywords are ranking. If you get a big burst of traffic from sharing your website with your friends and family than your website stats will be inflated. At some point, you will start digging more into your website’s stats to see which one of your posts are performing well and which are not.
Although reading the statistics from google analytics and search console are a new skill which you have to learn, but even if you know how to analyze your stats you will still have problems filtering out the traffic which is coming from friends and family.
As you can see generally speaking it is not a good idea to share your blog or website with your friends and family. You will only slow down the ranking process due to the high bounce rate and due to the bad user metrics, which is the last thing you want.