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Can I Make Money on the Web?

          The short answer is YES -

          The bottom profit line is always made in two ways - one reduction of selling expenses and the
          other way is by generation of sales to a wider customer base

          The best way is to do both at the same time and using the Internet as one of your tools to do this is a good strategy.

Yes, people are selling things (B2B and B2C) on the Web and Yes, using the Web as your primary communications tool can reduce expenses.

The latest surveys show that just over 40 % of people on line are using the Web to buy goods and services and businesses are connecting to the web to reduce expenses. They are cutting back on traditional media buying and using e-Mail as their primary communications tool with the customers and suppliers.

Surprisingly, tdc has been told recently by a consumer that if a company's product information is not available on the Web ~~~ it does not have creditability.

About 45 per cent of Canadian Internet users purchased goods and services while online at home, more than triple reported two years ago.-  2003 Study

Direct Sales Catalogues

Sales of durables are beginning to happen and surprisingly enough apparel is one of the top sellers on line despite what the fortune tellers said that it could not be done because people wanted to touch things before they buy it.. There is a very impressive
L.L. Bean Web site that mirrors their direct sales catalogue. We expect that it and others will be successful as time as consumers find that buying on-line saves money and the now important motivator "time savings".

The second example of a catalogue type enterprise on the Web is
Amazon.com Books . This book seller has limited warehouse space and limited inventory; yet purports to have 2,000,000 titles.

Amazon.com Books also has an associate bookseller program whereby persons who have Web sites can list and recommend books and videotapes. If there is a sale, Amazon will pay a commission on the sale up to 15%. tdc participates in Amazon's program through their
tdc's Bookstore.

For those interested in how Web catalogue merchandising is done it is well worth a visit.

The Virtual Store with lots of Items for Sale
Although corporate sites make up the bulk of online marketing, there are many "virtual" stores now online. These stores are not extensions of companies with physical locations. Instead, they operate exclusively online. One such  store is
Wine.com says that they have access to 14,000 different wines, cheeses, accessories to compliment wine, and gift baskets that can be shipped via  UPS, FedEx and DHL based on state and have it to your door in 2 - 5 days.  They do about anything that a normal retail store does.  They not only can list your products in various ways, but can send out newsletters to customers, can put special promotions on goods and services for sale at different times, provide invoices, inventory control, charge appropriate sales tax, shipping charges and process orders using credit cards.

This is all done on-line using "shopping cart" software that can now mimic everything that a brinks and mortar store can do without the infrastructure problems these stores have - all with more control on the inventory and less expenses for customer liability insurance because no real customers come to physically shop at these stores.

The upside of using this technology is that there are lots and lots of "shopping cart" software solutions most of which has been modeled from Amazon.com.  The downside is finding the right kind that will fit your particular situation.  As far as cost of this software.... it could be a low as no cost to as high as as much as you want to pay. 

The present challenge with using this approach is with some "shopping cart" software there is no way to attract search engine inquires to specific pages and if you are located in someplace outside the United States, purchases taxes and shipping charges integrated into the software might be a problem. Another challenge is that some 'shopping cart' software runs uses .asp files and others .php files and you have to find servers that are compatible to the software that you are using.

Yes, many shopping carts say that they can get you up and running within a few hours.. but I doubt it unless you thoroughly  understand the software and the logic of the person who designed it.

If you want us to help you find the right shopping cart solution for you just e-Mail.

Virtual Store with only one or a few Items for Sale
There is many opportunities to sell only a few specialized items on the net with great success. In fact one such case is " Hockey Made Easy  which is a single book that has been sold all over the planet in print, e-Book and CD format.

When we designed the " Hockey Made Easy " site we attempted to provide as much free information as possible so that the purchaser would make an informed decision based upon as much free information about hockey instruction as possible.

In doing so, we provided descriptions of the book, table of contents, links to hockey organization, images of the front cover, images and a history of the author, sections of the book, what persons have said about the book, and of course order pages where a person had choices to purchase the print or e-Book versions.

By concentrating on a single item like this over a number of pages,  we were able to attract search engines to find Hockey Made Easy on many pages making this hockey instruction book the most successful in the world.

Other tdc designed 'one or a few items' are Kool Pine Cottages, The Art of Charles Spratt, Eric Webster Furniture, and Industrial Property for Sale

If you have only a few items or services and want us to help you find the right web site solution for you
just
e-Mail.

Destination Web Sites
One of the most satisfying and challenging things I do is to design a site for a destination where you want the viewer to personally visit. To do this, one has to have a very good understanding of the destination and the motivations that will motivate people to visit.  This is a huge challenge and involves a close relationship between the client and the designer discussing the type and how the information should be presented. The site has to present as much information as possible to answer all questions on what the place is, why should one visit there, how to get there, when is the best time to come, and where it is.  This type of site requires an highly sophisticated navigation linking system, background music to add to the impression one is trying to provide on a page, images, slide shows, text and backgrounds that mirror the culture of the place, and lots and lots of information.

tdc has designed three very successful destination web sites that have motivated people to visit the properties and we would love to do more.

These are:  Countryman's, Island View Bed and Breakfast and the Brockville Farmers' Market.

If you have a destination and want us to help you find the right web site solution for you just e-Mail.

e-Magazines
tdc's FarmGate is an "e-Magazine linking urban residents with the people in the rural communities in and around the Region of Ottawa Canada" is a massive site with lots of pages providing information that we think has interest for both the urban and rural communities in Eastern Ontario. The site provides a weather report, web cam image of the Parliament Buildings, articles written by submission, notices of public meetings, winter driving tips, gardening tips, information on saving gas, restaurant reviews, a map of the area, a photo gallery of interesting places in the area,  and much, more....

This type of information is used as a substrate for selling goods and services to people interested in the information that is offered in
tdc's FarmGate.  Examples of the types of goods and services that are sold are  Tree Care, How to Build a Greenhouse with Style,
Hockey Made Easy for minor league coaches, players and parents, Dried and Habanero Peppers, and Eric Webster's Home Made Furniture... It works with the site annually been seen by about 675.000 viewers from around the world and sales being generated by all sale pages in the tdc's FarmGate family. Clients of tdc who sell products are services are advertised in the General Store which is part of tdc's FarmGate.

If you have products or services that you want us to be included in the tdc's FarmGate family just
e-Mail.

Future Expectations
Just five years ago e-Marketers were worried about whether or not the number of females would increase using the Internet and shop on line. No more.... they and even the seniors numbers are increasing all over the earth with the biggest increases coming from Europe and China. Now, there are over a billion people who have access to the Internet and the number of sites into the millions.

Who would imagine that the downloading of music, the purchasing of airline tickets, and the selling of personal treasures on eBay to most countries in the world would ellipse the profits of General Motors? But it is happening.

Who would imagine that Kodak would shut down their film processing unit in favour of a strategy involving digital cameras that can send pictures via e-Mail to anyone with an Internet connection.

The future is being driven by the new devices that can access the Internet. IPods, cell phones, PC's,  Laptops, Blackberries, PDA's and whatever new portable communications device they all will all have Internet access.

So if you are thinking about designing or updating your web site....  why not?

If you think I can help you just e-Mail.

Basic Marketing Principles
There are a couple of basic principles in selling on the WEB. That is the WEB provides a means to eliminate the middle person whether this is wholesaler or broker.

It is a media that provides a direct interactive link between buyers and producers .

The media provides the sender to become the receiver and the receiver to become the sender.

The WEB is the great leveler. Now and in the future there is no need for expensive showcase retail outlets, no need to purchase shopper liability insurance, no need to pay exorbitant rents and taxes for commercial retail space and lastly no need to carry the salaries of salespersons and sales distribution personnel.

What will be needed is people knowledgeable in marketing to update the web site, write the newsletter, create and execute on-line sales and marketing strategies, process orders and prepare items for shipment.

Besides the WEB can be accessed interactively 24 hours a day and 7 days a week from anywhere in the world at an affordable price. (present access is about $11.99 or less per month for a local Internet Provider)

This is why WEB site pricing for manufactured goods should be considerably less than that found in retail outlets. The public perceives this is true.

Sites that do price their goods and services using the traditional bricks and mortar approach might be surviving now but in the long run they will not survive.

Presently, retail outlets have countered these arguments with the provision of personal service, creation of an sales ambiance and not having to pay for delivery charges.

It is expected that direct-to-consumer delivery organizations, recognizing the growing Web commerce - will have to be competitive with lower prices than they presently have, simply because the consumer perceives that the cost to sell products is less than the traditional bricks and mortar approach.  Right now the big bugaboo for costs is the cost of transporting the item which in some cases more than the item itself.

If you think I can help you with pricing and marketing on line just e-Mail.

Marketing Costs
There is another aspect of the Web that needs to be addressed under the subject of costs.

The Web has the real potential to provide an efficient channel for advertising, marketing and even direct distribution of certain goods and information services. It has been suggested that it may be nearly one quarter less costly to perform direct marketing through the Internet than through conventional media channels.

Some examples of these cost savings are: Reported by IBM that on line catalogs on the Internet can save firms up to 25% in processing costs and reduce cycle time by up to 62% . These increases in efficiency suggests that there may be more financial benefits than just increased exposure for products and services than previously perceived.

One vendor estimated that his marketing efforts on the Web resulted in "10 times as many units [sold] with 1/10 the advertising budget " (Potter 1994)

Note: Right now, it is possible to maintain a domain name and have 1 gigabit of data on a net server for less than $200.00 per year Cdn funds.  ( about $200.00 US funds )

If you think I can help you with understanding marketing on-line costs just e-Mail.
 

tdc's Web Site Design and Marketing


         telephone 613 342- 0639                                                   call  toll free 1 877 292-3555

 

Updated: Wednesday, June 11, 2008

We thank all the 675,000+ people who came to visit our clients' sites in 2007 and
it is our wish that you could also be part of our client list in 2008

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can be sent to:  tdc Marketing and Management Consultation

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tdc Marketing and Management Consultation

117 King Street East Suite #2
Brockville Ontario Canada
K6V 1B7


phone: 1- 613 342-0639

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