Category Archives: Internet

DiveJust 10 days into the Thirty Day Challenge and I’m already hooked on the idea of becoming a serious internet marketer. I’ve found a number of people out there that have managed to make ridiculous sums of money online and I want a piece of the action.

Even though I’m still just a beginner learning the ropes, I’m jumping a head of the process.

Setting up the auto-deducting $100/week to use for investing in business ideas has probably been the best move I’ve ever made. Now I don’t feel guilty about purchasing a gadget or paying for hosting to try out a business idea that has the potential of a return on investment. As a result I’ve picked up a few domain names over the last couple of months and explored many different business ideas.

Continue reading

I’ve been doing some reading on methods for promoting a website, and one of the best ways is to sponsor a wordpress theme. So I’ve decided to do a bit of clean-up on my theme to make it ready to share with the world.

One of the difficulties I found when looking for a theme was that there seemed to be very few with a variable width content panel. I’m hoping that this theme will find some users on other sites and will help me improve it further.

Over the next week I’ll get it all ready and hopefully it will be ready to go by next weekend.

Thinking it might be a good idea for your WordPress site? check out http://codex.wordpress.org/Designing_Themes_for_Public_Release

leverageThere’s a video on the Thirty Day Challenge blog that has changed the way that I use the internet. The Challenge hasn’t even started yet and there’s already been some really good lessons. This video opened my mind to the power of using sites like SumbleUpon, Del.icio.us, Technorati, Facebook, personal blogs, and Flickr to create a lot of presence over one link. Using all of these services together increases the leverage. Taking this to the next level, there’s also introducing friends to these techniques and have them tag everything you just did.

Check out the video here.

You can imagine the viral nature of this. There’s so many services out there to help get your message out and create links back to your sites.

With the right tools it’s easy to make the entire process quick and efficient. And the effect can be profound.

Find places where there are lots of people and you’ll have an opportunity to get your message out. Remember, the more places where you link back to your site the easier it will be for people to find it. You can use leverage to make the impact even bigger.

st. edward’s crownRoyalties are one of the basic categories of passive income. There are many opportunities to make royalties online with little or no capital investment. That makes it appealing to a lot of people.

College’s make big money with their vast amount of inventions, and payments for royalties. However, without much experience it may be difficult to know where individuals can start.

The common factor with this type of income is that it requires a lot of up front work. This could include building a library of content, or creating designs, or inventing something new. In many cases it also requires becoming well known by doing some self promotion, creating web pages, and finding/building a fan base.

Here’s my list of resources with the opportunity to make you lots of money online through royalties.

Custom T-Shirts and Clothing

There are a number of sites online that can help you create your own products. They provide you with all the tools necessary to build a store front and make sales. Some even expand into more than clothing and allow you to design things like coffee mugs, cards, posters, postage, mouse pads and many other items. Here’s a short list of some of the best out there:

  • Zazzle.com – Zazzle has a lot of different possibilities. They have a very cool interface for designing your products very quick and easy. With their fixed price structure you will make up to 17% on your designs. Zazzle will set you up with a store front in minutes, and they have some widgets to put a piece of your store on other sites.
  • CafePress – One of the older and well established sites. Cafepress is a direct competitor to Zazzle. Their online design tools are a little less easy to use than Zazzle, but their pricing scheme allows you to markup the products from the base price to the appropriate sales price.
  • PrintFection -Specializes in apparel and apparently the quality is superb. Their pricing scheme is similar to CafePress.

For more information about getting into the t-shirt business check out http://tshirtentrepreneur.com/

Selling E-Books

If writing is more your style it’s possible to write a book and have it published online. You can use a site like ClickBank to help sell your book. They will add your product to their library which allows their large number of selling associates to also help with the selling. It’s possible to make good money with e-books, but with the large number of people trying to get into this, you’ll have to do some extra promotion to really sell.

Sell Photos

Have a knack for photography? There are a ton of sites out there to help sell your photos. check out this guy who makes about $2000/month selling photos online. Here’s some good sites to start with:

30 Day Challenge logoThe challenge hasn’t even begun, but I’ve already learned about quite a few things.  Much of it I was already aware of but had never taken the time to utilize.

Here’s a list of things that have changed the way I use the internet over the past week:

  1. StumbleUpon – I used to just use it for fun, pressing that Stumble! button is a great way to find new sites.  It has an uncanny ability to find your new favorite website.  Now I’m using stumbleupon to drive more traffic to to this website by using the “I like it!” button.  It’s an amazing way to get traffic.  Try it out!
  2. Google Reader – In the course they use Bloglines, but I already had opened my Google Reader account.  I had been using the link bar in Firefox to show my RSS feeds and it’s been overwhelmed.  My list was going across the window and then into the extended list.  The RSS reader has really enabled me to keep up to date with way more feeds.
  3. Alexa – Having the Alexa add-on has made me acutely aware of my websites score.  I’m addicted to the score and anxious to see it continue to improve.
  4. iTunes – I’ve used iTunes for a long time, but I never knew that you could give it an RSS feed and it would treat it like a podcast, and automatically download the media and put it into your library for syncing with an ipod.
  5. Using the RSS feed reader I’ve already found another couple of interesting tools.  For this website I learned about the Firebug add-on for firefox and the YSlow add-on that will test the performance and look for html, css, and javascript bugs in my webpages.

That’s just some of the new tools I’ve learned about and started using!  It’s only going to get better.  If you haven’t already checked it out there are some good videos on The Thirty Day Challenge.

This is great news. Alexa rankings, though seriously flawed, serve as a way to rank websites. They use a toolbar that is installed in the browser to let them know approximate relative traffic levels for every website on the internet. This ranking is used by several companies to assess the value of a given website, and thus put determine an appropriate price for advertising on the site.

Until this week the Alexa toolbar was only available for Internet Explorer. Since my site receives a disproportionate number of Firefox users (34%) my ranking is probably not as high as it should be.

It would help me out tremendously if you would download and install the Firefox add on or the Internet Explorer add on. It’s a nice toolbar and not intrusive at all.

Social NetworkIn my attempt at getting a business running online last month I relied solely on paid traffic by buying Google Adwords. There’s probably a lot I have to learn about buying traffic with PPC (Pay Per Click) systems. The biggest thing that I learned about AdWords was that it’s expensive.

Perhaps it was the words I was bidding on but even with the long tail keywords the cost was still typically in the 30 cents per visitor range. That may not seem like much but considering that a relatively successful blog will get about 1000 visitors per day. It would add up pretty quickly to get any meaningful amount of traffic.

Enter the Social Networks. Continue reading

30 Day ChallengeThe other day I was doing some searching online for other blogs about passive income.  I came across someone’s site, One Penny Project, and found out about the Thirty Day Challenge.  So I decided to sign up.

The basic premise seems pretty intriguing.  For the past few years they’ve developed a challenge related to making money online and allowed anyone to participate for free.

This year’s challenge will involve making $10 online without any initial financial investment.   They’ll step you through the entire process to creating the business, so there should be lots of things to learn.

The difficult thing will be to stick through with it till the end. Dedicating time everyday to a project like this is not easy to do.  So I have to make a commitment to myself to setting aside time every day to get things done.

Google Adwords LogoI recently opened a Google AdWords account to help drive traffic to this site as well as test out business ideas in the future.

Most people in copy writing realize that the specific words you use in a headline can make or break an ad. Every little aspect of the copy will affect the response rate. Therefore many people writing advertisements in AdWords develop a campaign to test out variations of the wording of their ads. Google makes it easy with their management tools to run multiple versions of an ad and compare the response rates. The result is that you can quickly filter out poorly performing ads and try to figure out what’s working. Continue reading

A Wiki is a handy tool for documenting things. What makes a Wiki a good solution compared to maintaining a word document, is that it scales, is easy to locate, it’s easy for multiple people to maintain, and it retains a history.

For these reasons I’ve decided to use a Wiki for internal use.

In a previous post I wrote about the HalOtis Organizational Strategy. I’ve given all those positions their own page, and fully listed all the responsibilities in detail. In the future as the tasks handled become more well defined, I can expand the Wiki to include details on the procedures that those people do.

Over time the wiki will become a resource where for example come tax time the CFO could refer to find what forms were needed, the time lines needed so that every year the process becomes more well documented and easier.

An added benefit is that when it comes time to hire someone new into that position, the transition will be smoothed. Or if someone in one of those positions leaves unexpectedly, their knowledge isn’t completely gone with them.

If the business is ever at the point where it could be sold or franchised, this documentation becomes the system that will help define how to run the business. It adds value of the business.