Selling Information on the Internet
żby: George Onyewuchi
My far the hottest money making trend on the Internet is selling knowledge in the form of e-books including digital audio and video. Most people use the Internet to do research, gather business intelligence, find fun things to do, indulge their hobbies or as a medium for the exchange of information via e-mail. The idea behind this new business model is to leverage this insatiable hunger for information on the web by creating and selling digital information for profit. Think of this in terms of owning an asset that you can sell to earn recurring revenue without the large capital outlay required for building your own manufacturing plant.
What are Information Products? For the purpose of this article information products can be classified into three:
1. eBooks - eBooks are electronic books you can read on your computer or your MP4 player or print out if you prefer hard copies. eBooks are instantly delivered electronically via a simple download from the Internet to the customer.
2. Audio - You can record your information using freely available software and a microphone. Audio CDs are now being delivered instantly via digital download to the customer.
3. Video - They say a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is even more powerful. Contrary to popular belief creating a video product is not difficult. Digital video cameras and the necessary software are readily available. Most video cameras now come with full instructions and the software to get this done. A well-planned video presentation may be what is needed to reach your audience.
Why Information Products?
There are several reasons why this business model has become very attractive to many aspiring entrepreneurs:
1. Low cost entry. The cost for entry is small, you can create your products, build a website, pay your hosting fees plus acquire the tools to start an effective e-mail campaign for under $500. There is probably no other business with this much potential that you can start for so little money.
2. Easy to Create. Once you have gone through the process of creating your first product, the process becomes second nature to you. You can create as many products as you wish to enable you build multiple sources of income. The technology to do this is available in the form of e-Book creation software. These specialized software will help you automate the entire process including packaging and distribution.
3. Unlimited Inventory. Once you have created a successful product, it becomes an asset that you own and control. There are no more production costs and the inventory is unlimited. You do not need to purchase additional inventory because you now own a product that cannot be depleted. Your job is to continue to market and promote your product for as long as there is demand for it.
4. No shipping and handling required. Your product is delivered automatically without any human intervention. No lost packages, no stamps and no delivery costs. The computer handles all chores and tracks the delivery of your product to your customers.
5. Immediate Payment: No receivables, thank you. Product is delivered automatically once payment is made.
6. You can work from home no long commutes necessary.
How do I get started?
Is this a quick path to riches? The answer is no. No one can promise you instant profits without work. You have to do your research on the Internet to identify the products you can sell and put together a plan of action. There are good Internet marketing companies that will literally guide you step by step if you do not want to do most of the work yourself. A question that I am often asked is how can I create useful content, I have no expertise? In my next article I will show you where to go to find paid talent to write and develop your content for you. For now let us look at a plan of action to get you started.
1. Build a list of 10 ideas that incorporate your areas of expertise, interests or hobbies. Example, Investing in the Financial Market, Day Trading, etc.
2. Create a list of 100 -500 keywords related to your interests, hobbies or areas of expertise. Example (currency trading, FX signals, forex training, investment strategy, trading S&P 500, emini trading, options strategy, stock trading, IRA, retirement planning, etc)
3. Now go to Yahoo Marketing (formally known as Overture) or Google AdWord and research these keywords. You want to find out how many people are looking for information using these keywords. You want a niche, so narrow down the keywords to find a sizable target group. Avoid general keywords that produce too many hits, the market is too large for you to compete in.
4. Using the results from this effort, define problems and solutions based on what people are looking for on the Internet.
5. Create or find an existing product that will address the needs that you have identified from your research.
6. Register your domain name, create a website and setup a Paypal account to handle your transactions. This is easier than it sounds. All the resources you need to accomplish this are on the web. Most good web hosting companies will provide you all the tools you need to do this yourself. You must have a website to succeed in this business, do not shortcut this step.
7. Depending on your product, eBay may complement your website. You can setup as a seller on eBay relatively easily.
8. Write a good sales letter describing your product and your unique selling proposition. Use testimonials and reduce the risk for the buyer by offering a money back guarantee.
9. Finally, believe in your plan and work your plan.
The business of selling information on the Internet is alive and well. With some research and a little bit of hard work you can create multiple streams of income by selling your products online.
Another way to get started in this business is to find someone or a company that has successfully done this and use their help to fast track your entry.
Here is a great site that teaches some of these great techniques: www.InternetProfitMentor.com.
They also offer a FREE 12 hour video course plus many other incredible tips. Check them out.
About The Author
George Onyewuchi is an Internet Business consultant with more than 23 years experience as an entrepreneur in the IT industry. Areas of specialty include eCommerce, developing software driven currency trading strategies and building online businesses.
You may freely distribute this article without any modification at no cost as long as full credit is given to the author.