The month of October was filled with setting up a website and everything else that goes along with it.
Choosing a domain itself took days. We went through dozens of ideas ... All About Cabo, Got Cabo?, Come to Cabo, Go to Cabo, Guide to Cabo, Cabo Cabo, Cabo Info, Cabo this, Cabo that, etc, etc .... Every time we thought we had the perfect name, we came to find out that the domain was taken! "Cabo Friends" had been one of our first choices, but of course cabofriends.com was taken and it wasn't even being used ... it was "parked", and I wasn't about to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for a domain name. At this point, being very frustrated with all this time wasted, we decided to just stick with Cabo Friends and use "net" as the domain. And so the first step to the new website was taken!
The website address would be WWW.CABOFRIENDS.NET!
Of course we needed a logo! It had to be something that would be easily recognized, not too much detail, but not too plain either! After a few "drafts", our simple little log was ready for the website!
I had no idea of what "type" of site would be ideal for what I wanted it to do! After looking at so many other "Cabo Websites", this one had to be different! So the first thing we had to decide on was a "Mission" of sorts. What did we really want to do with it?
Well, our primary goal was to have a method of contact with the many friends that we had met while in Cabo over the years. Of course we wanted to be able to share whatever we thought might be of interest or helpful with them.
In addition, we wanted to help friends we had made who live in Cabo and owned smaller "family owned" businesses there. There were so many little places that we had discovered over the years, that could use some "word of mouth" recommendations.
As we started to list what "types" of contacts could be made ... the list grew! Resort timeshare owners could make friends with other resort timeshare owners, then they could trade, sell, or rent out their places. People could share what they knew about EVERYTHING, from where to buy, what to do, or where to go if you have an emergency! Oh, how the list grew!
We also wanted everyone to be able to share their pictures! And of course, their videos! And be able to chat with one another, and this, and that, and this, and that!
(Oh, if I had only known that Facebook was good for more than Farmville back then)
It was clear that not just "one" type of site would do. So there went the idea of setting up a simple "fill in the prepared area" type of website. What I wanted was not available and this was going to take a little more time than I figured it would.
There were many late night hours put into researching different sites and platforms. Testing and tweeking, learning more about the technical side of websites and hosting companies. The end result was more than a few "prototype" sites that were started and worked on for days, only to thrown out because it wouldn't do what I wanted it to do!
By the end of October, the site was live and running with everything I wanted on it! Members joined free and had access to their personal "profile" page, a wall to post stuff on, a photo gallery, a video gallery, a chat room with the option of "video chat", and the ability to comment, on other members uploads (sounds familiar, doesn't it). Yup, the website had all I wanted it to have, the only thing lacking were members!
I had bothered and harassed all family members to join and test the apps and modifications of the site until I'm sure they'd roll their eyes every time they'd get a phone call from me. I'm sure they avoided coming over to visit as well! My biggest "Guinea Pig" was John. He spent almost as much time testing it as I did building it and I could not have done it without him.
So the next step was to recruit members! The next few months was spent emailing friends with a link to the site and asking them to join. We also had some business cards made up to hand out during our next visit to Cabo which would be coming up in December! We thought we'd hand them out to old and new friends while we were there!