Revealed – How to Take Your Business to the Next Level (Proven Ways to Expand Your Business Online)

This article is for coaches, consultants and self-employed professionals who would like to take their business to the next level by using the power of Internet Marketing.

You may be tired of having to go out every month to attend boring networking events that bring little results, doing cold calls or direct mailings, or paying expensive fees for print or TV advertising. You may also wish you could to automate your business more and make your income more “passive” – so you don’t have to work so hard, trading your time for money.

You have heard of the power of the Internet and would like to use it to bring hundreds of prospects to your web pages every month.

Here are a few tips how to start making it happen.

1. Build a web presence. This can be a full-blown website, or just one page designed to collect email addresses of potential customers (this type of page is called a squeeze page).

I know, this one sounds obvious, but according to some research, about 40% of businesses still don’t have a website.

2. Build a list. Experienced internet marketers will tell you that “money is in the list”, and it’s certainly true. We can say that a lot of money is in a TARGETED and RESPONSIVE list. To build a list, you will need an autoresponder software, a squeeze page, and a free gift to offer to people who come to your page to encourage them to subscribe.

3. Drive traffic to your page. One of the best methods is article marketing. I’m also a strong believer in the power of search engine optimization. Both of these methods if done right will allow you to bring traffic that is highly TARGETED, which means that these visitors will likely be interested in exactly the products and services that you offer. Finding people who already have a list of subscribers in related niches and asking them about possible joint venture deals is a good way to grow your list quickly.

4. Find out what your subscribers want – just ask them about it in your emails.

5. Provide your subscribers with what they want. Give them some things for free, but also sell them your products and services.

Penny Auctions – Are They Legitimate?

Today, people are naturally wanting to know if Penny Auction sites are legitimate or not, because of their increased popularity. I have noticed worried people are inquiring into how Penny Auction sites might be scams. With my overall experience of these auctions, I think I am qualified to advise you on whether these auctions are indeed scams or are legitimate.

As with other things on the World Wide Web or in life for that matter, there are both good and bad things available to you. Not all Penny Auctions are scams. They offer merchandise to you in a way you can afford, where you could not afford it otherwise. Many people (more than you think) have won these auctions for items like big-screen televisions or iPads for a lot less money than the recommended retail price. There is an unlimited array of different items available on these auctions too.

This is not to say though, that there are not Penny Auction scams that you will come across, and you will have to be cautious to make certain you do not get caught in one. You need to look at the reviews first if there are some. Do a search for the Penny Auction site you are on, and then read the information you find. If you see a lot of positive feedback from people, it is most likely that you will have a good experience too; this is one of the best way to know this for sure.

The auction websites which you need to stay away from are those for which you see a lot of negative feedback, or the new ones which have no feedback yet. Just go to the websites which have established a good reputation. This holds true for most of the online activities in which you may take part. Usually, I am unlikely use a site unless people have tried it before me. This may seem selfish, but it is also a good way of making certain that I do not get involved in any Penny Auctions scams.

Penny Auctions are a proven source for products of high quality at such low prices that there is no way to find them so cheaply at a regular store. The way the economy is today, I think these auctions will get even more popular as time goes by. The bottom line is that so long as you research before participating in these auctions, you will probably have an enjoyable experience, just as I do. Penny Auction scams are the exception rather than the rule according to my experience.

The Positives and Negatives of Online Auctions

Internet auctions have become increasingly popular over the years for a number of reasons, from their broad geographical reach to their absence of time limits. If you are contemplating moving into this area of selling there are a wide variety of attractive benefits to consider, but also some negative aspects to take account of. Here is an outline of some of both the pros and cons:

Cost-effective

Auctions can be one of the most cost-effective ways of selling goods online. There’s a plethora of cost saving measures sellers and auctioneers can take. It is considerably cheaper to organise an online auction than an offline auction event – with an offline auction money needs to be spent on a venue, a professional auctioneer, item storage and various other necessities. There are comparatively few expenses to worry about online… Auctions can also be an excellent way of liquidating old or excess stock. Selling these items by auction tends to bring in significantly higher profit margins than selling them off at a fixed discounted rate. Marketing is another area in which Internet auctions can save on costs. Marketing materials in the offline world can be costly and time-consuming to produce and distribute. Online marketing is relatively cheap, and has numerous other advantages.

High profits

Online auctions are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. They can go on for weeks (or even months). This is in contrast to physical auctions, which typically last for no longer than a few hours. This lack of time constraints is a great asset. It means that bidding can carry on for longer and thus lots are likely to sell at a higher price. Bidders find the competitive environment of auctions exciting and exhilarating. This is true of Internet auctions just as it is of auctions in general. This atmosphere can encourage participants to bid for items at significantly higher prices than they would in other situations. It is not surprising that online auctions have often been compared to gambling. As in gambling, participants can become caught up in the excitement of the event and become increasingly reckless with their money. This can lead to prices being driven well above and beyond market value.

Wide reach

Whereas in the offline world auction attendance is limited to those who can manage to physically be present at the event, auctions on the Internet can potentially be accessed by a vast and diverse audience of people from every corner of the globe. Items can be sold to people sellers would never have had access to previously. The larger the number of participants in an auction, the higher the prices that items are likely to sell for. There can also be a larger number of products up for auction. The increased reach of online auctions can allow sellers and auctioneers to create new specialist markets within their sector. Online auctions provide an astonishing degree of access to unusual or niche items that rarely turn up for sale in normal circumstances. For example, in the offline world machinery tools may become available for sale only occasionally and go for a high price when the do come up for sale. There is a wide geographic market for these items online. If marketing is targeted effectively, you can make lucrative sales.

Efficient marketing

Trading online offers the opportunity to market products in an exceptionally efficient and effective way. Data from your website can be used to identify customers’ and visitors’ buying and viewing habits. This means you can make highly informed decisions based on your customers’ interests and tendencies, and target your marketing activities more accurately. Social networking and blogging are very useful tools for anyone with an online business. Social networking can provide a steady stream of contacts and sales leads, as well as allowing you to publicise your auction site in a general way. If you frequently take part in online discussions relevant to the goods you sell you can offer your advice and expertise in the area and encourage people to put their confidence in you as an auctioneer or business partner. Writing a blog can also provide excellent publicity and customer interaction, as well as another route to your site for search engines.

Downsides

However, Internet auctions can also have their downsides…

• All websites are vulnerable to technical glitches. Technical glitches could cost you significant amounts of money, and customers who encounter a glitch when using your site may be permanently put off from buying from you.

• Criminal activities are something else to which e-commerce websites can be susceptible. If customers pay for items through your own site it is important that you scan the server for any potential security risks and comply with PCI DSS requirements.

• It shouldn’t be forgotten that there is still a significant number of people (particularly older people) who are not adept at, or not enthusiastic about, using the Internet to buy goods. Basing all commercial activity online may cause companies to lose these customers.

• Online auctions tend to lack the bustling, highly-charged, highly competitive atmosphere of auctions in the real world. This could lead to less competitive bidding and thus lower prices. Online auctions tend to see a dramatic surge in bidding activity towards the end of the auction, rather than sustained competitive bidding throughout the auction.

• Some bidders engage in a practice known as “sniping” – not placing any bids until the very last moment of an auction (when it is impossible for other participants to place competing bids) so as to avoid a bidding war that will drive the price higher. Naturally, this is not very beneficial for sellers and can result in lots selling for well below market value when in a physical auction they would have sold for a higher price.

Overall, the benefits of online auctions tend to outweigh the risks and downsides. However, it is important to research and consider all aspects of online auctioning before making the decision to move into this area of commerce.