The Edmonton Entrepreneur Meetup Group Message Board › Hey it's Matt............
What's going on? Did you have a good weekend? What's with this heat spell. Last call to do some bbq-ing I guess. I just started bbq-ing so I'm no expert, but what I do is I slightly tenderize the meat. Then spread some olive oil on the meat, add steak spice, salt, pepper and bbq sauce. Then cook til medium rare. Seems to make for a very nice steak, I just love it!
Anyway, I wanted to talk to you about the internet. As some of you may know I've been online like "forever". Got online back in like 96. I can't believe it's been that long! Started designing websites in 97 and just kept at it. I started a website in 2000 which turned into a big success. I had that going for 11 years. Finally due to various circumstances beyond my control I decided to at last shut it down. It was on a bit of decline anyway so it's time had ended. But it had a very good run.
The reason I mention this is because I often get asked about ecommerce and how someone can get started online. I often get asked stuff like "is it too late now" and "is it expensive to get started" and "what kind of website should I start. So I thought I'd breifly shed some interesting light on the ennormous potential the web still offers all of you in starting a home based business.
Television was invented in 1925. The BBC began the world's first regular television broadcasts in January 1929. So think about this for a second, does that mean if you didn't start your TV show by say 1939 that you were "too late"? Of course not. Same goes for the internet. Just because it's 2011 your still "way early" infact. And the dawn of the internet era is just getting started.
As far as costs go, you can actually start at no cost. When I built my website I was a student and didn't have much coin. So I got started on a shoe string budget, basically nothing. And it is very possible. So as far as start up costs go, it's up to you how much you want to spend. However, if you're starting at no cost then you either have to know what to do or know someone who can help you. But with even a few hundred you can get your website launched.
Then often there's the question of what sort of website to launch. The internet has evolved into what's known as web 2.0 . That simply means that someone will build a website, launch it, and then the site gets populated with user generated content. So some examples of this include sites like: youtube, facebook, twitter, POF and others. The platform is built and then the users populate it with there data. This helps the website to grow exponentially and viral.
Okay here's where it gets interesting.....
See when I got started there were some major challenges. You basically had to learn how to design websites if you wanted a website. Hiring someone to build one costed thousands. And you basically had to figure everything out. But now everything has completely change...
What's happened is the emergence of the freelancer. There's tons of sites now in which freelancers are waiting to do all your work for you, and for next to nothing in terms of costs. About 4 years ago someone mentioned this website "scriptlance.com" to me at a meeting. I had been to it and used it in the past. But I thought, I'm gonna go see about that site again. Went to it, and in no time was completely hooked! Rather than doing all the leg work of designing websites I could now hire web designers on there, who live in places like india, china, and the phillipines to build the websites and launch them, and get the work done in a fraction of the time it would take me to build a site.
The advantage of outsourcing to freelancers from overseas on sites like scriptlance is that youre money goes a "long way". You get about 50 times the buying power compared to hiring someone local. (sry local web designers, ouch). It's true though. And with many of you operating on shoe string start up budgets I'm sure that's music to your ears. And it's a win win, you're helping someone in a developing nation to put food on there families table, and you're getting your site going, it's win win.
Some of these freelance web designers infact will built you a basic 5 page website for as little as 5 dollars. Sounds unbelieveable right? Wrong. That in there money is more like 250. They can build a simple site in 1 day so it's happening right now. Go to fiverr.com and you'll see the dude who does the 5 page websites for 5. Scriptlance you could get it done for about 10 dollars. They have a 10 dollar minimum order on there.
Infact from what I seen, if you try and pay too much then the people on scriptlance get nervous and worry that something is not right. Again that's 50 times the buying power in there money. Like why would you offer so much, something must be wrong with the job.
Also, the people on scriptlance all have ratings just like ebay sellers. So you know who's good and who's not. So you can quickly gage who to go with.
So what I'm driving at here is this.....
Say you know nothing about the internet and you want to start a website. Well what a lot of people are doing is simply this. They find an existing website that they like and use. And they simply decide to build there own version of the site. (making sure not to copy anything as you don't want any legalities). But you can now start an online business even if you know very little about ecommerce this way. Once you find a site you want to build your own similar one to, you just post on Scriptlance.com in a project posting: "please build me a site like this one". As simple as that and you'll start to get web designers biding on your project, and getting you going and for dirt cheap.
So again the net has completely changed. No longer do you need to be a web designer to launch a website. Nor do you have to know very much about the web. You just have to hire the people off scriptlance who do. And you have to ask the right questions. So after you get someone to build you the website and launch it for you. Then you either post another project on scriptlance saying something like "please advertise my website to get my site visited by lots of people". Very simple statement. SEO experts and other ad pros will see your project and bid on it. Then you choose the winning bid and you get someone advertising you website online.
And taking payment online is extremely easy. The safest and fastest way to get started with that is Paypal. Everyone has heard of paypal and they trust it for making their payment. You set up a paypal account and in seconds you or your webdesigner can set up "buy now" buttons which you can put on your website to start taking payments by credit card in real time from customers from all around the globe.
So anyway, if you've ever thought about starting a website, it's now much easier than ever before to get started. You don't need to know a thing, other than "what site do you want yours to be similar to". So say you want the next facebook, kijiji, POF, twitter, youtube or whatever, just tell the web designer in a project post on scriptlance that this is what you want and they'll build it for you. However, of course some careful planning and research on your part is extremely important. But I'm just pointing out that you don't need the technical abilities, nor do you need a big budget to get a site launched.
And we've all heard the incredible success stories such as:
Mark Suckerburg - starts facebook from a dorm room, now worth billions
Hotmail founder built hotmail for dirt cheap sold to MSN for about 400 million
Youtube same thing, sold out to google for about 1 billion
and this list of the overnight hits goes on and on and on. You just need a good web 2.0 idea and if it goes viral you could stand to have a very successful business in no time at all. And if it doesn't work, then at least it won't break you, unlike many brick and mortars might.
So anyway I thought I'd shed some light on that topic. If you have an idea and you want to bounce it off me I'd be open to listening and giving you my feedback. Also just a reminder please rsvp below for the next Entrepreneur meetup. Anyway, food for thought if you're thinking of trying a new business. ttyl
http://www.meetup.com... rsvp here
a little off topic but if you wanna listen to an interesting radio show that will get you thinking outside the box then check this out ( you can also get the "alex jones" iphone app):