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  #1  
Old 03-29-2008
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Default How many people have their own website / online business ?

How many people here own & operate there own e-commerce website, or online business?.

What were your associated start up costs & re-accruing costs, how do you attract sales to your site, the types of products your site sells & the rate of your success.

Feel free to share any information, experiences & opinions
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Old 03-29-2008
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Starting your own online business takes a lot of work. A lot of work! It's an endless task if you do well. The more the business grows the more you're usually working on it. I started my first online business 4 years ago in the Virtual Currency Market (MMORPG), I started off with SWG Credits. I bought and sold this currency after I saw how the system worked.

I first started with a shopping cart, which I recommend to everyone when starting out. I used VPASP at the time that was one of my biggest mistakes. I now recommend CS-Cart.com. They're easy to work with, search engine friendly, lots of free add-ons, etc.

Anyway, the cart cost $200, a domain name cost less then $10 per year. I recommend godaddy for that. When selecting your domain name, make sure it's short, easy to say and remember. My second mistake was a long domain name, I don't want to say what it is but it was pretty long.

The only accruing cost is usually your advertising, I used Google Adwords and of course your time. You'll spend a lot of time working on your site.

My products were bought cheap and sold competitively at around 100% profit. Competition now screws that up and you're lucky to get 20% profit but it was good while it last.

I would suggest if you're starting your own business. To write out what you want to do in a notepad. And check things off as you accomplish them. I say write it out because you'll stick to what you're doing, and get things done faster.

I created my business from nothing to a running business in less then 30 days. I figured out how the business worked, I found a shopping cart, installed the cart, I found suppliers, setup support, created content on the site, added products, and then started advertising. I had my first sale within an hour of going live. Very exciting times…

But don't think it's easy. When I first started I didn't know much about internet marketing, search engine optimization, advertising, or anything really. What I did know was HTML. I started when I was 15 with my first website. It was created with a notepad using HTML. It was a fan site for a game I was playing at the time. And actually it's still live:

GoldenEye

Anyways, I knew a little about what I was doing before I created my first business a few years later. Learn HTML (HTML Tutorials) and you'll make your life a lot easier when it comes to making websites.

Good luck!

By the way I sold the business for $180,000 two years ago.
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Old 03-29-2008
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Thanks for your information Aspkin, very informative =)
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Old 04-04-2008
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Making your own website with shopping cart is not easy, takes sometime to learn the shopping cart, learning curve is very steep when no one teaches you. There are graphics preparations which is another skill. OK, let's say you are goog at both and have the attractive and flawless website finished, you have to SEO it, which is another skill that is a professional skill itself. The comes maintenance, your visitors will drop you fast if website is not updated on frequent basis.

Many people own websites or online business, but most don't get desired number of hits or simply failed and disappeared after 1 or 2 years.
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Old 04-05-2008
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cool thanks for your info
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Old 04-05-2008
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Question...
I created my own website, but its been sitting for like 2 months now...no sales.
Pretty good prices...i mean, lower than waht i sell for on ebay, im getting a few hits every now and then.
How much should i plan on spending on advertising...and how do i advertise?
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Old 04-05-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loveandhate View Post
Question...
I created my own website, but its been sitting for like 2 months now...no sales.
Pretty good prices...i mean, lower than waht i sell for on ebay, im getting a few hits every now and then.
How much should i plan on spending on advertising...and how do i advertise?
First of all, even if you SEO it, you may not get many visitors, that's because basic SEO doesn't work these days, not like when Yahoo had less than 10,000listings, those were the golden days when your website could get listed within minutes and you would be the only one shows up!

There are street smart ways to SEO but still take time and no guarantee bring in visitors. Most visitors don't trust and buy from unknown website or business online, when they do, they test the water first by buying very little, and only if they really need it badly and the item is not available anywhere esle.

One of the reason ebay is so successful is that they spent many billions of dollars in advertising and marketing, made it into a internationally trusted icon, with all the free and paid media propaganda.

We all know too well ebay is not the most reliable place to buy, not even to sell, the place is full of criminals just like in the real world. A good thing about crimes committed through ebay mostly are not violent like murders or rapes, but just some "white collar crimes" which money is the main issue, not human life.

The bottom line is if you are just a small guy, not an ecommerce expert, and wants to make some easy money online, very likely you have to depend one way or another to those bigwigs, like ebay, google, amazon, paypal for now.
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Old 04-05-2008
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Question for someone? Whats the purpose of paying the $39.95/mo for a yahoo site?
What do they do thats so special, when u can buy the yearly host from go daddy cheap? Am i missing something??
Thanks..
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Old 04-05-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loveandhate View Post
Question...
I created my own website, but its been sitting for like 2 months now...no sales.
Pretty good prices...i mean, lower than waht i sell for on ebay, im getting a few hits every now and then.
How much should i plan on spending on advertising...and how do i advertise?
I would start off with $20 a day. You might think that's a lot but when you're making $50 profit from that, you'll want to spend more and more. At my peak I was spending $400-$500 a day in adwords. I still spend $100-$200 a day now for affiliate stuff I promote, and I make good profit off of it. But that's something else.

Also what I recommend when selecting keywords, only use words that you know the buyer would type into Google to buy your product. Become the buyer for a second, and use the keywords you would use to find your product on Google and BUY! The main thing here is Buy! Not for looking up research, you want only buyers to limit you cost.

Adwords is tricky to get a hang of, start off slow and then expand on what's working.

Good luck,
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Old 04-05-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebayhateluv View Post
Question for someone? Whats the purpose of paying the $39.95/mo for a yahoo site?
What do they do thats so special, when u can buy the yearly host from go daddy cheap? Am i missing something??
Thanks..
Yahoo is worthless; there is much better hosting for 1/10 of the cost out there. Godaddy is okay. Right now I'm using hostgator.com for my adsense sites and wow... they're pretty good. The thing I like about them is they're hosted at The Planet, which this site is hosted at right now but they're cheap as hell at only $14.99 or something for unlimited domain hosting. I have one hosting plan with them, that's hosting 30 of my websites for only $15 a month! And just as good as the server I'm paying $400 a month now.
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Old 04-05-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ebayhateluv View Post
Question for someone? Whats the purpose of paying the $39.95/mo for a yahoo site?
What do they do thats so special, when u can buy the yearly host from go daddy cheap? Am i missing something??
Thanks..
There are many hosted stores service providers like Yahoo, some are robberies. Yahoo charges a percentage of your sales, I think. Yahoo provides some sort of free or discounted advertising if you pay to use their store, but may not be effective as you may think. You can get free license shopping carts such as Joomla which is hot these days, it is better than most other free license carts, in my opinion.

If you already have web hosting service, and you're a real geek, you can install Joomla yourself, or use a cheap web store hosting provider like Power Sellers Unite - Online Auction Industry Discussion Forum and Ecommerce Store web hosting which I am using myself.

I personally don't think any small guy starting out should fork out more than $10 per month for web hosting with store.
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If you want to learn more about being successful on the web, I would highly recommend checking out warriorforum.com

That is where I got my start and I still frequent it daily. To be honest, this site and warriorforum are 2 of the friendliest and most informative forums that I have found on the web.
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Old 04-05-2008
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Some further great info here, thanks guys for your sharing your opinions & experiences, very intresting
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Old 04-29-2008
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Great info. I don't really want a website to sell stuff on. I want to be an affiliate where I have a site to promote their stuff. I think this would be a whole lot easier. Aspkin, you started when you were 15? So what are you 19 now and sold a website for $180k? Wow dude...

Any thoughts about paydot.com? I prefer them better as they deposit to your paypal and I have paypal debit card, which means I have instant access to my earned money. Clickbank can be hacked, and yes I know how to get free ebooks via clickbank. Also you have to wait 1 month for checks etc. Thanks.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by suspended2008 View Post
First of all, even if you SEO it, you may not get many visitors, that's because basic SEO doesn't work these days
I disagree with this one. SEO still holds its weight a lot. Most of my traffic is organic and not paid. You just have to work hard and get a lot of links coming in. I put my website up about 3 months ago. After a lot of work and time, it's on p1 of google for a lot of important keywords. You just have to be diligent and put a lot of time into it. It's not overnight success and even when you get there, you have to fight to keep your spot.
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im in the process of making my own ecommerce website, go to my thread
http://www.aspkin.com/forums/webmast...-opinions.html

and look at my site, its a draft so far so you cant click on anything let me know what you think.

also if you dont get no sale why dont you spend some money and hire someone to seo it for you? a professional.
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