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Thread: Brilliant Ideas

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    Top Contributor grynge is a Premium Member
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    Brilliant Ideas

    I was wondering if we could have a thread about great ideas the community sees around the webosphere. These could be marketing ideas or maybe something to make the user interface better, or a general helpful hint that saves time and money? But also I would liek to see the reason you think they are good ideas and how they could help other webmasters.

    I'm a big fan of Envato and their network of marketplaces. They do a free file for the month, one each for every marketplace, I think this is a great way to get people back onto your sites and everyone loves something for free.

    But my favourite is they do a bunch of files from across their marketplaces for a price like $20.00 they will do something like $500 worth of apps/themes/tuts/music/graphics etc etc and sell the whole collection for a cheap price. I think they only do it every few months, but in each pack their is normally 1 thing at least that I have been thinking about getting. They aren't always cheap, never been sold items either sometimes they have been very sort after items and have sold thousands of units. I know it keeps me coming back to their site and then I will normally find something else on their that I may have been looking for as well or planning to code myself, so I gather other people do the same thing.

    Now how can you get this to work for you, well thats a bit harder. If you are selling stuff is it worth giving something away? A virtual item is much easier to give away than a physical item such as a handbag. Any ideas how this would work on an ecommerce site selling uggboots or lingerie? Could you do all orders this month receive a free blah in such size and colour? or do you give them the option of size and colours? The collection would also be harder as well but it could work in some instances, where you have say a hardware chip, that also needs cable and solder you could make that bundle and offer it as well. Much like those "People who bought this item also bought these items"

    (Way off topic) BTW another thing I love about the Envato group is they don't care what google thinks about cross linking their sites, if they want or have a need to cross link they just do it.
    And they thought me broken, that my tongue was coated lead, but I just couldn't make my words make sense to them, if you only listen with your ears ... I can't get in
    Non ducor, duco

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  3. #2
    Moderator Kay is a Premium Member
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    Grynge, lots of people have looked at this thread, but no one has responded. Maybe no one has any brilliant ideas to suggest or maybe they're just hoping to lurk and suck up any ideas others suggest. I've been racking my brains trying to think of a response to your OP, but I can't think of a good reply to do it with. I'm only posting this in the hope of letting you know your posting is appreciated and that maybe someone else will respond. I've taken a big risk of doing this because I might be told off for posting fluff and get my bottom spanked again in the Staff Room.

    C'mon, surely someone has seen some brilliant ideas on their travels around this Interwebby thing.
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    Top Contributor crabfoot is a Premium Member
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    Some people are easily persuaded by free offers (take my wife - please). My wife recently went shopping for car insurance, got a large slice off the quote she'd been given, and a "free" DVD player. I'm sure we will use it occasionally, but I'm also sure she didn't take the rock-bottom lowest quote.

    Quote Originally Posted by grynge View Post
    where you have say a hardware chip, that also needs cable and solder you could make that bundle and offer it as well.
    I've sold components in that fashion on eBay - if you can link out to a good design that uses the components you have, people buy them. A lot of the time they don't build the project, a lot of the time the link "goes dead" because the site you link to blocks it for eating their bandwidth, but the punters buy the bits because they might not see them again.

    I know that a good project description on a web page can sell the goods, much better than a hazy/vague "you can do this with these". Trouble is, you need stock to be sure you can fulfil demand to justify putting the work into that project description, and you also need to kill the competition by buying up their stock. I've done that on eBay, buying all the stock of another seller to compete at their price level.

    There's an obsolete valve in the marketplace that you can pick up for about $5 each in the US. I could easily sell those for about $25 each with the right info accompanying the sales page, and some testing (about $1.50 each). But before I did that, I'd need to buy up a lot of the existing stock, quietly - and that would cost me about $20k to exhaust the major stockholders. Right now I need liquidity in cash terms to stop liquidity in water terms (we've just bought two houses with a damp problem - needed to buy both to make it easy to work on the party walls).

    WTH the point is that the more unique info you can supply about using a product, the more people are likely to buy it from you because it gives them added assurance that what YOU are selling will do the promised thing. Fred in Timbuktu might be selling something very similar, but he doesn't have the "project pages" you have generated. Whatever, you will find it easier to make significant money if you buy Fred's stock first ...

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    Top Contributor grynge is a Premium Member
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    If you do sales a great idea is to confirm the order/purchase as soon as possible even if it is automated. There are a couple of reasons for this,

    the first is people feel reassured you are a real company and haven't ripped them off
    secondly if you send the purchase details they have time to check the details of their purchase lowering return rates
    thirdly it reduces the amount of time you will have fielding telephone calls and emails about the fact have you recieved their order
    fourth it also helps reduce your chances of the order being a scam. I put the details of the order and I send the confirmation to the email address they supply on the order and if they pay by another payment I also send the confirmation to their paypal account or if supplied the bank transfer account so the people paying for the order also know they are being charged.

    When I introduced this into my sites it was the single biggest way of reducing extra workload. The only time I hear from people now is if they say thankyou or if the order is wrong which saves me time later on.
    And they thought me broken, that my tongue was coated lead, but I just couldn't make my words make sense to them, if you only listen with your ears ... I can't get in
    Non ducor, duco

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kay View Post
    Grynge, lots of people have looked at this thread, but no one has responded. Maybe no one has any brilliant ideas to suggest or maybe they're just hoping to lurk and suck up any ideas others suggest. I've been racking my brains trying to think of a response to your OP, but I can't think of a good reply to do it with. I'm only posting this in the hope of letting you know your posting is appreciated and that maybe someone else will respond. I've taken a big risk of doing this because I might be told off for posting fluff and get my bottom spanked again in the Staff Room.

    C'mon, surely someone has seen some brilliant ideas on their travels around this Interwebby thing.
    Yeah I was hoping we could make this kind of a check list of things to do to help sites become successful. As I find stuff I will try and add them here as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by crabfoot View Post
    Some people are easily persuaded by free offers (take my wife - please). My wife recently went shopping for car insurance, got a large slice off the quote she'd been given, and a "free" DVD player. I'm sure we will use it occasionally, but I'm also sure she didn't take the rock-bottom lowest quote.

    I've sold components in that fashion on eBay - if you can link out to a good design that uses the components you have, people buy them. A lot of the time they don't build the project, a lot of the time the link "goes dead" because the site you link to blocks it for eating their bandwidth, but the punters buy the bits because they might not see them again.

    I know that a good project description on a web page can sell the goods, much better than a hazy/vague "you can do this with these". Trouble is, you need stock to be sure you can fulfil demand to justify putting the work into that project description, and you also need to kill the competition by buying up their stock. I've done that on eBay, buying all the stock of another seller to compete at their price level.

    There's an obsolete valve in the marketplace that you can pick up for about $5 each in the US. I could easily sell those for about $25 each with the right info accompanying the sales page, and some testing (about $1.50 each). But before I did that, I'd need to buy up a lot of the existing stock, quietly - and that would cost me about $20k to exhaust the major stockholders. Right now I need liquidity in cash terms to stop liquidity in water terms (we've just bought two houses with a damp problem - needed to buy both to make it easy to work on the party walls).

    WTH the point is that the more unique info you can supply about using a product, the more people are likely to buy it from you because it gives them added assurance that what YOU are selling will do the promised thing. Fred in Timbuktu might be selling something very similar, but he doesn't have the "project pages" you have generated. Whatever, you will find it easier to make significant money if you buy Fred's stock first ...
    Yeah you're right some people are easier than others, the reason I like the free app/script thing on Envato is that they would have people who visit the site every month just for that, and you never know if they will purchase something else? I think everyone knows that the big supermarket/department store chains all do loss leaders just to get people in the door. They know once they are in the door they will possibly purchase something else whilst they are there.
    And they thought me broken, that my tongue was coated lead, but I just couldn't make my words make sense to them, if you only listen with your ears ... I can't get in
    Non ducor, duco

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    Quote Originally Posted by crabfoot View Post

    where you have say a hardware chip, that also needs cable and solder you could make that bundle and offer it as well.
    I've sold components in that fashion on eBay - if you can link out to a good design that uses the components you have, people buy them. A lot of the time they don't build the project, a lot of the time the link "goes dead" because the site you link to blocks it for eating their bandwidth, but the punters buy the bits because they might not see them again.
    A good design can also link out to the components it needs and produce sales that way round. If all the components for a particular design are bundled then even better - this doesn't need to be electronics either, I heard of someone doing this with plans for building wooden children's vehicles. It's mentioned in George Marshall's "Get Out While You Can" along with a whole bunch of other interesting real life money making methods.

    Quote Originally Posted by crabfoot View Post
    you need stock to be sure you can fulfil demand to justify putting the work into that project description, and you also need to kill the competition by buying up their stock.
    I don't know that killing the competition is really necessary - if you stimulate demand enough you run a pretty big risk of someone figuring out how to source or build it cheaper but I guess you hope to have made your money and move on before that happens.

    This leads on to one of the gems I've heard from some of the MMO "gurus" - all other things being equal people prefer to buy from people they know and trust. Sometimes the short term monetary gains can be more than offset by the long term cost to reputation which may lead to people refusing to buy anything from you regardless of the actual value proposition.

    Some more ideas I think are brilliant :-

    Sell Containers Not Content - most people value actual physical property more than digital representations of information so look at ways to transform your information into something your customers can actually touch. Plans bundled with the components needed is one way, as are completely pre-assembled products, think of related merchandise - either bring in stock yourself or form a relationship with someone who already does.

    Conversation not content is king - ask your customers what would add value to your offering, some of them might even have brilliant ideas you'd never have thought of on your own.

    Some brilliant ideas I see on the EP forum.

    The thanks and reputation buttons combined with the rules on "fluff" probably do a lot to make this place great. Some of the private comments related to reputation have certainly motivated me to expand further on ideas that didn't seem to receive the best public reception.

    The weekly bulletin of best threads which probably does a lot to highlight the kind of conversation that people like to see as well as motivating the major contributors to produce more of that kind of conversation.
    Last edited by DaveMurphy; 23 July 2012 at 8:05 am. Reason: add brilliant things about EP

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    Dave, since you mentioned George Marshall's book I thought you might to know we discussed it a while ago along with some other books.
    http://experienced-people.net/forums...nline-business
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    I learnt about Jekyll today via monty's post here and I thought it was a brilliant idea. I hate WP and this would allow me to convert any future WP site I buy into a proper static site without need for all those updates and security worries.
    Find the right business brokers to maximise the value you extract from your business and improve the chances of selling your business.

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    I have to say I do really like static generation tools (nanoc is another good one which is a bit more flexible that Jekyll) as they let you set and forget a site, while giving you a way to easily add content and have that reflected in category/tag pages and so on. Plus, for something like Jekyll, lots of people use it so theres quite a few plugins and its easy to convert a WP themed site into a Jekyll backed site.

    If you fancy a static site, but want the benefit of some sort of web interface for it as well, this relatively new project , Prose.io , lets you do that - assuming you store a backup of your content at Github. They (Github) do hosting for a lot of static sites as well.

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    I've had ideas since this thread was last posted on. Probably none of them were brilliant anyway. But if I did have any ideas I've shared a lot of them on here.

    You could do that too and be an upstanding and helpful member of this community.
    British Expat - helping people to live and work abroad since the year 2000.

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