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Thread: Online business without a website?

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Online business without a website?

    Whilst running a website doesn't mean you have a viable online business, conversely I'm trying to think of online businesses which don't require a website.

    I've come up with a few where you don't require a website, but then you have to rely on a third party's website.

    Examples:

    Selling on Amazon/eBay
    Publishing on Kindle
    Selling turnkey websites in a marketplace
    B&Ms can do all their promotions on social networks

    Even then, don't most people at least have a home base, ie a website for their business?

    What about email marketing? I suppose you could buy lists and market your offerings to them without having your own website. Those who buy and sell websites and domains could approach and deal with their customers direct. (Difficult to get started, though.)

    These days there's a lot of talk about domains and websites losing their importance/value. But I'm still struggling to think of a viable online business which doesn't require a website. Can you think of any?
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

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    New Member Mentor JimWaller is a Premium Member
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    Another one to add to reliance on a third party:

    selling apps in one of the app stores (Apple, Droid, and/or Windows)

    By definition, doesn't an online business require some sort of website (if not your own, a third party site)?
    Help bring Janice home My mother-in-law was hospitalized while on vacation (holiday) We're trying to bring her home.

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    Kay (5 December 2013)

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    By definition, doesn't an online business require some sort of website (if not your own, a third party site)?
    LOL. Never assume, Jim. Yes, at first it seems obvious that an online business requires some sort of website, but is that really always the case? Just as there are many other business activities which are carried out behind the scenes away from the public eye (eg the best jobs are often not publicly advertised), I was thinking there must be some online businesses working behind the scenes too. What about in the security niche? I suppose even then, whilst they might not want to spell out what they do exactly, they'd probably still have a website to promote their "consultancy services". I suppose even if they didn't have their own website, their online business still consists of providing services to other people's websites.

    Other than email marketing, I can't think of anything. Surely email marketing can't be the only way to have an online business without needing a website (yours or another's).

    I expect that everyone on EP has, or aspires to have, websites. But I wondered if there were other, more hidden ways, to have an online business.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

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    Top Contributor crabfoot is a Premium Member
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    There are a lot of people involved in social marketing that don't have sites, as such. I know it happens because I've read the blurb, but don't ask me to pay so I can find out how it is done in practice.

    I've met people on Black Hat World that make fast money without sites - you really don't want to know about that. Usually involves War Driving to pimp from someone's WiFi connection and reduce traceability, working from a laptop in a car.

    You can scrape a living from MTurk if you live in the US, and some people like the freedom they get from that.

    I can probably think of more ...

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    Kay (5 December 2013)

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    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Also a lot of MMO products are sold with the claim "no website required". But again, these seem to rely on third party websites. I was kinda looking for something more sophisticated than these, but legal and 'respectable'.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

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    Search engines don't need their own websites

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    Top Contributor Dave McM is a Premium Member
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    But they do need to be installed on a third-party website, don't they? Unless you're talking about a mobile/desktop app of some kind, and even then you've got to market it somehow.

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    New Member Mentor JimWaller is a Premium Member
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    There might be something in the mobile phone arena that doesn't need a website. There could be promotion offline using a QR code that signs one up for direct marketing to the smart phone without the need for a website at all. I'm not exactly sure what that looks like, but it seems possible to me. I'm just trying to think outside the "box", or in this case outside the web.
    Help bring Janice home My mother-in-law was hospitalized while on vacation (holiday) We're trying to bring her home.

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    You said it yourself really, a lot of people that use Amazon to sell or even publishing on Kindle will still have their own website, it looks more professional at the end of the day and in turn it can easily generate more traffic.

    I actually have just started on Kindle and one of the things I plan on doing is having a website for the specific book series so at least when they are done reading I can leave a note "Go to X for up to date information on X" that way they can keep an eye out for sequels.

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    Promoting CPA offers via bing or adwords
    Teespring you can design teeshirt and sell via Facebook etc

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