Maximize Short Term Giveaways and Stay Away from Longterm

Although I have said in the past that the internet provides the ability for the small player, the person without too much money, to compete with the larger companies and the bigger advertisers There are limitations to this,  one of those is offering free postage and packing,  although this may not seem to be a huge issue you have to run the numbers before you start and that is where unfortunately dear readers, I went wrong this time.

Learning is Painful – Really it is!

 you see your product isn’t worth anything if you don’t make any money for it simple as that, that’s what we’re all here for and whilst we want to entice people to buy our products giving stuff away in the short term is a one-off cost let’s say,  providing a service however such as free postage and packing is a much longer term commitment and consideration.

If I listened to myself all would be well 🙂

 so let’s take a look at just how badly I screwed the Pooch this time, the sale totalled £33,  the profit on those two products  was a roundabout £11,  but because we have decided to run before we could walk and have therefore offered free postage and packing we lost the vast majority of that profit due to the £8.99 postage and packing cost.

 as the free postage and packing was my idea you can imagine that my business partner was not that pleased with me,  and so lesson learned,  fortunately for us this time,  the damage is actually fairly easy to the limit, we are experiencing some footfall  if you can call it that in a virtual world,  but not enough, and not enough engagement with advertising to mean that withdrawing free postage and packing would cause any kind of damage to the brand.

 where I went wrong in this particular instance (and it was me that went wrong)  was I got carried away with the idea of simply shifting products,  and that is the fundamental mistake that I made and the fundamental mistake that I don’t want you to make,  remember why you started this,  you started to make money that is your primary Motivator,  your primary Motivator is not to shift products,  and whilst that sounds screwy let me explain.

 if somebody right now said I will give you £200 a day to do absolutely nothing,  you don’t have to sell,  work or suffer,  you simply need to sit on your backside and earn the money and that is literally it,  I would imagine that the vast majority of people reading this would jump at the chance and all be earning their £200 a day before finishing the end of this post (if anybody ever does).

 and that actually is entirely the point the fact is you are not trying to move your products the only thing you are interested in is getting the money, and money lost is money lost,  the idea of a “ loss leader”  a concept that is employed by the vast majority of supermarkets,  is that one loses money on a product to entice a customer further into the shop where they will then see more expensive products at a higher profit margin and the money will be returned and increased,

 however as in my case,  you simply make a situation whereby your paying customers to take your products that is not a loss leader that is simply a loss.

Conclusion

 the moral of this particular sad Tale,  is simply that you need to do complete research and by complete research I mean you need to look at what you are going to sell why you are going to sell it and what you’re looking to get out of it,  if what you are looking to do is make money,  then you need to run the numbers accurately,  the numbers are the most important part of this you need to run them and you need to know them,  business has always moved quickly,  people that are able to move quickly and are versatile make money in business and those that take forever to shift or to move to a new product ultimately will always fail,  this can be seen with the recent events and the fact that the high street is dying as a result,

 it could be argued the High Street was already dying, I get that,  but certainly because shops and bricks-and-mortar unable to move quickly to respond to buyers trends they are stuck and their costs are still fixed so basically on a huge scale they are doing exactly what I’ve just done.

  good luck all remember to run the numbers and hopefully I’ll be back with some more more positive news in the very near future (tomorrow).

You are everything at first !!

I wanted to point out some of things that are missed by the Guru’s, you are everything at first, and what I mean by that is that you are marketing, sales, picking/packing customer relations, social media, and purchasing, the buck really does stop with you.

You are probably thinking YAWN I know!

But unless you are doing it you don’t know, listen the fact of the matter is, unless you can have all your products sold through Amazon Fulfillment Which cost a fortune in stock initially,

You will have to be the person that is responsible for purchasing marketing picking packing and selling,  the problem this presents is never addressed in any of these marketing Guru videos, these millionaires telling you how they did it and how you should be doing it, and the people that are apparently making $10,000 a second from selling rubber dog poop,

My working days have extended from the 10 hours daytime working, to around 18 hours on an average day and that’s 7 days a week,  this is because there is no start your site and become a millionaire, there is no no fast track to getting your goods to the top of the Google search engine,  and although shopify YouTube all these are brilliant places to sell Amazon is fantastic you’ve got to bear in mind that you are there with hundreds of thousands of others all trying to do exactly the same thing.

The history of life has always been written by the winners,  and ultimately the winners in life have always been the people that have got the largest amount of resource,  as much as nobody wants to hear it and as much as it would be lovely if it wasn’t the case, the fact is that resource equals directly the amount of money you have to spend, this isn’t a myth this isn’t me being all upset and sad and bitter that I haven’t sold a million protein powders and now I’ve got a Bentley in a big house and we never have to worry about money again, it’s literally a fact, when you look into the background of a lot of these gurus (as I have said before), normally it is the case that “when I started this business all I had was a dream and 3 million dollars”..

YOU CAN MAKE IT!

But you can make it, the internet as I’ve said many times before, is still a very very fertile Goldmine,  the only reason I have made this particular post, is because it has come as a huge shock to me just how much time this is taking, unless you have a lot of money to invest, the best thing you can do is just accept that for the next 12 to 18 months you’re going to see hardly anything of anybody.

The one comfort you can take is the fact that the vast majority of people that started at the same time as you, will give up before that time, they just will the amount of times I have sat here and so I can’t be bothered if this is literally going nowhere, and nearly given up, is difficult to count, just do what I do always remind yourself why you started in the first place, and actually the further into it you go the further into that reason you wonder, what I mean by this is that you will start to distance yourself from the people around you, they normally the people that you started doing this for, financial freedom is generally to benefit our family,  and these are the ones you’re going to miss during this 12 to 18 months.

So as a final reminder, Work hard realised that it’s going to be hard work but keep going because the rewards are going to be there, this is the only place where the little guy or girl can compete with the big guys and girls with the big budgets we just need a little more patience.

Hey Hey Progress update – read all about what I screwed up this time!

So I have sold something, no not my soul, although if there are any takers (Mega Lolz).

No I actually sold a product, 2 to be precise, and have learned a lot since I last posted, these were hard lessons for me and to be fair they probably won’t be that easy to hear, but if successful you can drown your sorrows in piles of cash!

Harsh Lessons In List Form.

  1. You are not the magical marketer you think you are, unless you are selling products so quick you can’t pack them, something is wrong, I didn’t know S**t as it turned out and that is why my marketing sucked, stop, take a good look at the competition and work out what they are doing.
  2. Just because you would buy product from yourself doesn’t mean anybody else will, this little fact was very harsh, I thought I was great but no, I had to spend time learning what people actually wanted.
  3. Nobody is going to help you unless there is something in it for them, OK not everybody but most, after all every post I do provides a linkback to my shop so even I am not doing this for free!
  4. There are a million ways to skin a cat, but only one way to get noticed in a sea of people all trying to make money online, shout louder than them, but don’t spam as it will damage you beyond recognition.
  5. Instagram is good, but you need numbers, sorry but the 500 followers you have don’t mean s**t, take a moment to look up Gary Vee on the subject, I did and followed his advice and started growing users exponentially, still not rich though! bummer hey?
  6. Don’t whatever you do give up, I work 18 to 20 hours a day and haven’t made a cent, but I have hope and with hope anything is possible.

Conclusion

So there it is, all I have learned in the past week, harsh lessons but valuable, keep trying, don’t lean on anybody cos they will buckle, and make your business a success!

Progress at last!

Ok so finally things are moving, the new ad is running and the focus groups are working well, our store session rate has gone up 400 percent!

That actually sounds better than it is because of the low number to begin with but I’ll take the glory for now.

So are you rich now?

Hell no! Still not sold a single thing so now we need to address two possibilities

  • The store sucks ass, as uncomfortable as it may be to think this, it is a real possibility that your idea of a store, or mine in this case, just isn’t good enough so we will be looking at that to see if we can get a conversion rate at all!
  • It could just be in the numbers, the reason people can make so much money on the internet is because of the sheer size of the customer base, we are only selling in England so we have a smaller base than others but still, a good conversion rate is 1.5 to 2 percent so the more customers the more conversions! I hope so anyway.

So that’s it for this rant, hope your business is doing better than mine and that I catch up to you soon if it is !

Shopify channel or straight through facebook? You tell me!

So after the major schoolboy error of not adding my target audience to the campaign I fixed it and wouldn’t you know it hits again!

Shock horror, advertise to the right people and bam you get a result.

However my question to anybody who has an opinion is, is it worth using the shopify channel api? After all direct through Facebook is much more flexible and the analytics are more complete.

I am going to try and run some different campaigns direct for the next couple of days and see how it goes, but I would live to hear from anybody with more experience than me (which will be the vast majority of you) if you have an opinion either way.

Mega facebook fail OMG!

So I did say that this would be warts and all account of my attempts to build a business this is real short because it was a single mistake that is actually a bit schoolboy error.

Don’t ever and I mean ever forget to ADD the target interests for your audience in your facebook ad settings.

Before you say it, yes I am aware how stupid that sounds but I did forget and thought I’d just point it out.

Changing Tack – when to give stuff away

So when do you start giving stuff away? well for us it is now, we are trying to capitalise on the gyms reopening on the 24th July (for the UK), a lot of the big players are offering silly discounts like 90% and we did consider it but we would have run at such a massive loss, so we have opted instead to run a promotion that we can afford and see if that makes a difference to our sales.

The lesson here really is that you cannot compete with companies that have so much more money than you, if you have money then you can compete with companies that are established already, it is literally a war, whoever runs out of money first loses.

So I will run the AD’s now and see what kind of uptake we get, we are also re-designing the landing page of the site to still try and combat the bounce rate.

Why is this blog so short?

Because nobody reads the long posts, it is as simple as that, I am trying to help people to start making money online, not by preaching about how wealthy I am (as I am not) and not by simply setting out steps that in an ideal world would make a successful business, if you follow me and keep up you will hear first hand the mistakes we made and hopefully avoid them yourself, the internet is a huge cash machine there is plenty for all!!!

Marketing and shopify

Given the new format I am embracing, I wanted to just give a quick heads up about marketing and shopify.

You see one thing that you should be aware of is, if you need to make a significant change to say your google channel on shopify it will most likely take out your facebook settings too.

You can see, I am sure how much of a disaster this could be if it went unnoticed, make sure you check each time you change something significant because it may just take out something else.

I will keep updating with tips as I go, hope this helps somebody.

Ta ta for now……..

Progress short and sweet – read on

Ok so from now on I am going to keep these post really very short and sweet for a couple of reasons.

The first is simply that I am not convinced that anybody actually reads the lengthy posts that go into detail, preferring instead to read posts going over the same tired old ideas of how to make a successful blog by doing nothing but holding an audience.

Instead of this my plan is to simply continue on the path I was on before which is to try and help people that are trying to make money online to do just that by avoiding all the pitfalls that we make while launching our supplement company .

Shopify So far

Well we haven’t sold a goddamn thing! this is not shopify’s fault however so a couple of things that are far more important than you give them credit for are.

Bounce Rate

Holy Moly this one is a nightmare, being successful online is never going to happen while this number is high, pay really close attention to the design of your website to make sure that people stay on it.

Tutorials

Are you too busy to use the tutorials that are on the site? then you are too busy to make money online simple!

Don’t waste traffic

We did and it really stresses me out, after generating traffic to the shop we left it til the traffic dropped off before asking why nobody was buying.

If you knew it all you’d be rich

If something doesn’t make sense ask for god’s sake, in this instance I cannot praise Shopify enough, they have helped me through every issue I have had from the really counter intuitive right through to the down right idiotic fat fingered mistake.

Does anybody read posts ? Read on and see.

Does anybody read posts these days, did they ever for that matter? I tried to find out in my previous post by putting a free offer in the lower part of the post should anybody choose to comment, nobody did I have look at why I think that is and fill you in the latest GFPharma news!

Discovery of issue

In my previous post I put, at the end, as an experiment, the offer of a free bottle of vitamins from my new supplement company, this was done essentially to see if anybody actually read all the way to the bottom and so far nobody has taken me up on my offer,

That’s disappointing

So what does this tell me?  it tells me that the vast majority of people that read the posts aren’t actually reading the  posts,  of course it could also mean is that nobody really wants to take me up on my offer of free vitamins from my company, however I’m hoping that’s not the case because if it is that does not bode well for any future business.

I still Appreciate the views and the likes!

While I appreciate the views and the likes the problem with this is it indicates the vast majority of posts that are published on to WordPress (at least in my case) and I venture any other social platform for that matter are hardly ever read, now whilst this may sound like I’m taking this personally and that I am complaining people aren’t reading all the way to the bottom, it is something that we need to be aware of in marketing, because the same will be for my posts as yours and the ones that you read, if the generally recognized action is to simply skim over the title and then like the post in order to get onto the the list of people that have liked the post to promote your own profile, it doesn’t really benefit anybody, I get some views but I don’t get ad impressions because nobody was actually on the website so I don’t get any revenue I don’t get to pass on what I’ve said through all my message and ultimately I don’t get too forward what I’m doing the blog for.

This isn’t going to be some long rant about how we manage to get people to read all of our posts, it is simply observation of the fact that I could probably have made any offer on that post in the secure knowledge that it would never be taken up.

Persistence is the Answer

However, I will happily continue to create posts and share as much knowledge  as I can, I am assuming (rightly or wrongly) that the reason for the lack of full attention from many readers is basically due to my lack of authority within the consumer space, what I mean by this is with my very small amount of followers currently at 220 I believe,  I am happy to accept that I am not seen as an authority on anything where as people with more followers say 2000 or 3000 will be seen as worth reading all the way through.

 And following from the  previous post, not the earn $1,000 a month post, this was another experiment based around checking to see how many people are looking for the quick route as opposed to working for the successes online,  and to be fair that last post actually garnered a lot more views and likes in a shorter time frame than the one prior to it, I will provide an update.

GFPharma Update

The plot unfortunately, with GFR Pharma thickens,  one problem we appear to have is the absence of the ability to accept payments through PayPal, we set up a PayPal account previously for the company but for some reason something has gone wrong, given the recent events around covid-19, it is becoming very difficult to contact any support within PayPal unless I wait for 5 and 1/2 hours on the phone, this is of course something that I haven’t got the ability to do due to time constraints.

Marketing Tip Shopify

There are are multiple sales channels available within Shopify,  but they all have their own unique dependencies and one of the unique dependence specifically for eBay, is the ability to accept payments through PayPal,  I believe this is based around eBay’s rather aggressive returns policy and PayPal’s equally aggressive refund policy,  wherein essentially eBay will refund the customer and then follow up on the arbitration as to who was actually to blame  for any issues that were raised as part of the purchase.

Onward and upward

We will carry on and we will work out the problems with PayPal and ultimately get that sales channel working my advice, is to not expect everything to go completely smoothly for What It’s Worth, I think the sales channels within Shopify are brilliant they work really slickly when they work, they provide a “ single pane of glass”  view into Facebook,  Google, eBay, and other social networking sites, allowing you through the use of API’s to construct and deploy marketing campaigns to the sites, the linking in the background can be a little finicky and it has to be admitted has taken myself and my partner a few attempts to get right,  the biggest single piece of advice I can give anybody is to completely document what accounts are linked to what and where the permissions lie,  during the course of setting up the sales channels we opened several accounts using the credentials we thought we needed to use, and ended up almost in a cycle of things not working because certain permissions were in place, if we had documented it from the start we would have been able to follow our documentation going back over the things we have done to see where the problems were, this literally was a case of not planning well enough.

Plan as if your life depends on it – it does!

By planning what I mean is don’t just run headlong into starting an online business it is not as easy as the gurus on YouTube will tell you,  the people that make it in online businesses don’t simply sit on sun loungers on a beach in Mexico tapping away at the keyboard making millions, it really doesn’t happen immediately,  as I am so fond of saying, I’ve said in many previous posts the ability to actually do that, to sit on that beach in Mexico, to make millions, and to enjoy a relaxed life where you are living as I see everybody should, by which I mean free of money stress it takes a lot of planning in a lot of groundwork,

Plan everything from the start, plan what you want to sell how you want to sell it where you want to sell it who you want to sell it to how they are going to see it where they’re going to see it what they going to do to interact with it how you’re going to get billed for that interaction, because absolutely nothing in life is free and don’t ever think for a second that it is,  is and write it all down so that you can reference it as in when you need to because once you’ve done that you’ll find it working forward progressing your business advertising to your customers will be a lot quicker more efficient and provide a bigger return on investment based on the fact that you don’t have to completely reconsider every time you do something what you’re doing it for trying to reach and how.

As always good luck with all your endeavors, I will be back with another post tomorrow hopefully and hopefully good news,  but meanwhile I’m going to continue on with trying to work out all the kinks and the problems and one day, just one day maybe I might just make it.

Shameless Plug Section

Vitamins at gfpharma.co.uk
Whey Protein at gfpharma.co.uk
Fat Burner Product
Fat metabolisers at gfpharma.co.uk