matepot from Web to Wealth - How to Make Money Online

Web & Internet Marketing

Many providers of valuable free content on the web derive most or all of their revenue from advertising. Eg, according to content and media analyst Beauvillain, popular search engine Yahoo! "gets 90 per cent of its revenues from advertising" [Beauvillain Olivier, quoted in Internet Business magazine; April 2001].

Banner advertising involves sites making a small area of their page available to other sites in return for payment, or a reciprocal arrangement. A particularly irritating variant involves the use of JavaScript to spawn a multitude of regenerating pop-up windows upon loading a particular page. A form of marketing unique to the web is the affiliate program. First introduced by Amazon, it involves links to a company's site being posted on numerous other affiliate sites. For example, a photography web site may link to Amazon (as a supplier of photographic books), photographic stores, processing houses etc. When a sale arises from one of these links the owner of the affiliate site earns commission.

Corporate web sites are advertisements, but the most successful offer valuable content alongside the sales pitch e.g. a supermarket providing free recipes. Whittle [Whittle, David B.; Cyberspace: the human dimension; Freeman 1997] predicts a blurring of the distinction between information and advertising in Cyberspace along with users being able to determine what kind(s) of advertising they are subjected to.

The most controversial form of Cyber advertising is spam, the e-mail equivalent of direct (junk) mail. The 'net makes it easy and cheap for advertisers to mail millions of recipients. Programs trawl Cyberspace collecting e-mail addresses, which are traded on huge lists. The result is that anyone who has published his e-mail address is bombarded with worthless messages like:

Sell 1 million products on your web site
GUARANTEED LOWEST CAR PRICING ON LINE (NEW)$$$$$$$$$ 7085
Re: Winning Confirmation n7 17746
No Flame Lighters Hottest Christmas Gift and More (200)
You'll Be Amazed!! 
What a Great Adult Site!!

to quote but a few examples from my own mailbox. Every such message has to be transmitted and then downloaded before it can be discarded, given the number of recipients that implies a huge amount of wasted time. Creating software to eliminate spam before it reaches the end-user is a lucrative (and ongoing) business.

New Strategies for the Information Age

Peter Small, a former electronic system design engineer and fashion entrepreneur, proposes a radical new strategy for the e-business. Small likens recent developments in information technology to the invention of machines, which led to the industrial revolution, and suggests we are currently in the transition period between the industrial and information ages.

Small believes methodologies which were successful in the industrial age are no longer applicable due to the inherent unpredictability of rapidly changing technology. "It is not just that there are new rules or that some of the rules have changed. The new rules which apply in the digital world of communications and e-commerce are sometimes the exact opposite of the proven and accepted dogmas which apply in the conventional world". He goes on to suggest a process of evolutionary design as an alternative to traditional planning. In this model a business develops and changes in response to the market, technological advancement, user feedback etc [Small, Peter; The Entrepreneurial Web; ft.com 2000].

Small describes the limitations, in the information age, of the traditional managed team operating as part of a rigid hierarchy. Instead he proposes the concept of temporary, virtual teams, brought together by an initiator, someone able to "identify a win-win situation where cooperation can produce benefits" and "produce enough evidence that profits will result from [the] proposed cooperation". Such teams aren't "held together by rules, but by benefits of mutual advantage." Some years before the social networking phenomenon took off Small presciently states of the Internet, "It isn't about technology, it is about communicating with people".

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