Internet Education

This Internet education page gives you some basics on Internet business  and covers topics in a summary format. The topics introduced in this  Internet Education page will be covered in more detail in following pages.

Location 

This information is key to your education. Let’s compare an offline business and an online business.  You have heard the saying that the three things that a successful offline business needs are “location, location, location”.  Well, in the online business world, location is the position of your website or your selling location on search engines (Google, Yahoo, MSN) or on a highly visited site such as eBay.  If you rank in the top few entries for your keyword on a search engine, you will get the traffic to make your business successful.  Do not think that on the Internet the saying “build it and they will come” applies.  I can assure you that it does not.  If you list an item on eBay that is popular, you will have people look at it and bid because people know about eBay and millions of them use it every day. 

Part of your business plan for the Net must address how to get traffic to view your offerings. 

What is Traffic? 

An Internet business depends on traffic to survive. Traffic is the term used on the Net to describe the number of visitors to your website or to a website where you are advertising or selling a product. Very simple --- no traffic, no shoppers, no revenue, frustration and failure.

The “gold standard” for measuring traffic on the Internet is a site called Alexa.com. It monitors the Internet and counts "hits" (the number of times that a site is accessed).  To further your Internet education, go to Alexa.comand select “Traffic Rankings” above the search box. Enter www.ebay.com and you will get your information.

Exchanging Money on the Net

If we are going to be entrepreneurs, we want to make money for our efforts. We need a way to easily pay for things and get paid by our customers. The old written check or money order can still be used, but the new way is using credit cards or using a payment service called PayPal. PayPal is owned by eBay and is a first class operation. I have used PayPal for years, and I have had only good experiences with it.

PayPal will accept credit cards from customers who do not have a PayPal account so you do not have to set up a merchant account with the credit card companies. This can save you money since a merchant account can be quite expensive for a small starting business.

Another great feature of PayPal is that it has a shopping cart feature that you can add to your website for free.  You can create “Buy It Now” buttons for the various products that you want to sell and it will interface right into PayPal.  It lets you have a very professional looking site with a shopping cart and the payments are made through PayPal.

I use PayPal for all my financial transactions on the Net.

If you do not already have a PayPal account, I highly recommend that you open one. Click the banner below to set up a free account.

Sign up for PayPal and start accepting credit card payments instantly.

Now that we have established the way to get the money into your account, let’s see what we have to do to get it there.

Build a Mailing List 

In all the research that I have done about how to be successful on the Internet, the most common tool that the most successful individuals have is a large mailing list of customers or prospective customers.  It is far easier to sell someone who has already done business with you and trusts you than to sell to a stranger.

You know from your off-line life that the businesses that you continually use are the ones that did a good job and treated you right. Once you gain confidence in them, you continue to go back to them. The same is true on the Internet.

I was fortunate enough to be able to take a class from Jim Cockrum, one of the most respected experts on eBay.  Jim made the comment that if his office caught fire, the first thing he would save was the backup with his mailing list on it.  

From this point forward remember to capture the information about your customers or prospective customers.  Build that all important list, and it will pay you dividends in the future.

There are tools for building and maintaining mailing lists that we will address later in your education.

These are the basics in your Internet education.  Let's move on.

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