Selling products on the Internet can be a lucrative method for making money. However, selling a single product is not necessarily the best business model. It is much easier to make sales to an existing customer than to generate that first sale. Existing customers have already shown that they are willing to purchase and are not just tire-kickers. In addition, if they like your product you have probably generated trust so that they are interested in other products you provide. Clever marketers usually have a raft of products to offer on the back-end to take advantage of this.
Another method for tapping into this is to develop membership sites. In this way, every sale sets up a recurring income stream. However, there is an impression that setting up membership sites entails a lot of work. This can be the case if you want everything to be perfect before even opening such a site. In this case, you may spend months creating the site. The problem with this is that you may find that it is not very successful in generating members and that the time and effort has been essentially wasted.
Perhaps a better model is to develop membership sites quickly and be happy to ‘fail fast’. In reality, there will be some markets that a membership site is not suited to. It is better to find this out early and to cut your losses. On the other hand, if the site starts to generate interest then you can work on improving it.
One of the easiest ways to generate a membership site quickly is to use a content management system such as WordPress. Content needs to be placed on protected pages so that the casual observer or search engine cannot access them. After members sign up, you can use an autoresponder sequence to deliver the links to the content along with a password on a pre-determined schedule, such as once a month.
Of course, there are problems with such an approach. Security is not tight because a member could simply share the password. However, in many non-Internet related niches, such as gardening, you will find the members less technically savvy and less likely to try to breach security. If you are willing to spend some money there are many scripts and plug-ins that can take care of security and other features such as membership cancellations. This can be a wise investment, given that they tend to cost in the order of several hundreds of dollars for use on multiple sites while the potential for gain from even a single site is much greater. For example, a site with a conservative number of members such as 500 paying a paltry $10 a month would generate $5000 every month.
Remember, this is from one site. If you are willing to take action and are not afraid to take action you could easily have a number of such sites.
To Your Success