Just a few quick (I hope! ) answers in order...
1) Harvey from [Domain Private]
https://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.p ... 0#p1364480
Watch their ads more closely. I don't really care who they AIM at (which is basically everybody). The implication is clear...
Stunning website = easy = business success.
The second part of the equation is false.
So while I don't care who they AIM at, they'll surely reach those who we want working with SBI!... solopreneurs with BAM.
I didn't say "the number of solopreneurs out there is much smaller than thought." The worldwide number is 50 MILLION. Figures online range from 20M to 60M. I ballpark it by looking at some stats...
There are 170,000,000 active sites currently (red line, has been flat for around 5 years, so we're in "turnover steady state'")...
https://news.netcraft.com/archives/cate ... er-survey/
This alone suggests that the 50M number is conservative since the solopreneur tranche is probably more than half of all online entities (WP is estimated to be about 1/4 of all domain-based sites, if memory serves.)
What I [i]did say...
"The number of SUCCESSFUL solopreneurs out there is much smaller than [ I ] thought."
Wix alone has around 2,000,000 domain-based websites...
WordPress dwarfs that at 20M...
We have 10,000.
Most of the top 1M in Alexa are larger-than-solopreneur businesses.
Our best estimate of the number of solopreneurs (like SBIers) = 50,000.
Close to 1,000 SBIers rank in the Top 1M at Alexa.
That 2%, or 1/50.
That's a staggering figure when we only have 10,000/50,000,000 sites = 1/5,000.
It all boils down to this...
SBI! multiplies the solopreneur's chance of success by 100X. Almost all solopreneur's websites fail to do deliver in a significant way. The vast majority of Wixians, WPers and all other solopreneurs mostly fill the long tail of Alexa...
http://www.sitesell.com/blog/2016/02/ho ... ition.html
It's fair enough, Harvey, for you to carve out other reasons to have a website, except you still have to think the goals of those all the way through...
Hobby sites mostly use the free side of Wix. But even "not-for-profit," domain-based hobby site... Wouldn't you prefer sharing what you have to say with 1000 people per day instead of 10?
Ditto for just about any other business except sites that are really just there so someone can see a presence online if they check out the site on the business card (i.e., "brochure sites").
It's not about whether you are an apple or an orange. Wix provides stunning websites. It's just that they do not provide what most would want to get it seen.
The stats are overwhelming. I'm sure that there is the rare, SBI!-like success, but the bit picture is bleak.
I agree with you...
That doesn't mean that all those folks should do SBI!.
But Harvey, that was NEVER my point.
2) Vivi from danish-schnapps-recipes.com
https://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.p ... 5#p1364485
has opened a webshop on Tictail, from where dealers and private people can order [her handicrafts]. And she markets her products on social media.
SBI! does not seek everyone in the world. It wants folks with BAM who want to build their own online business from scratch. There's a wide variation of people within that, including ways to monetize, size of financial targets and the more important goals behind those goals, etc.
Your daughter has two huge "time sucks" (full time job, makes here own products). So do those with local businesses. Working social media would indeed be the best use of her time. Focus on PREselling and let the marketplace take care of the rest.
So SBI! is not right for her, nor is Wix (beyond a brochure site, maybe).
Reason is exactly what you said...
she doesn't have time to write a whole lot of pages to get free traffic.
Using a marketplace (Etsy, eBay, Tictail, etc) makes sense. So does advertising, IF she has set up an alternate way to sell and can generate a positive ROI.
Nori did it the other way around - built traffic and brand (PREselling) first, then products. Now she has a powerful brand and sells sponsorships and Cards, having a record year in a Zika year for the Caribbean.
She has built something with excellent income and real value. But she knew that she never wanted to work for anyone. And after university, she's done it full-time (well, when she's not surfing
BOTTOM LINE: Each and every person is different. You must weigh upsides and downsides. For your daughter, foregoing the building of her own traffic and a brand outweigh the immediate results of a marketplace to sell her products.
We're getting off-topic...
This isn't about Wix's commercial. It's not about Wix, not unless she wants to set up her own store with them (I don't know if that's possible). If she wants to sell products with ads at a profit through her own store (using drop-shipping, etc.), well...
That's how Google got where it is. Tons of business NEED to advertise.
And it might work for her.
But that's a lot more work and then we get into the conversation whether SBI! would be better. But she doesn't have the time to take either of those directions.
So I'll try to get us back on-topic.
3) Harvey Re "laying into Wix"...https://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.p ... 7#p1364487
I worry only about the impact on folks who would make great SBIers. THAT is who I address in this reply...
The ad is misleading for those who are thinking about starting their very own online businesses. We know from "the long and winding road" thread how much folks bounce around until they finally find SBI!.
Heck, some great folks with BAM have been tricked and up-sold into starting their business both before Wix, with Wix and beyond. But talking about Wix's ad (getting this back on target)...
Stunning website = easy ≠
WordPress never claimed that. It just happened. Because of its massive ecosystem, you sort of come to the conclusion that you can build a business with WP. And you can, it's just that the odds are way stacked against you for all the reasons we've discussed...
Either way, solopreneurs almost always fail with any sitebuilder because there is so much more to success than building a website (like doing the first 5 DAYs and reading MYCPS! so you can fill that stunning website with stunning content).
(Again, I wrote the first post of this thread, only with OUR potential solopreneur in mind.)
P.S. re your follow-up point with brochure sites and not using SBI! for it...
You should not. It's like using an elephant gun for ant-hunting.
We don't include those who need brochure sites as being among those who we serve.
Send them all to Wix or any other builder. You can't fail if all you need is a place to send those who already know you.
That's only some of whom the Wix ad aims at, though. It's a very broad net and it includes those who would do best with SBI!.
4) Dan, re doing our own Wix-like site builder...https://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.p ... 9#p1364489
We wouldn't build a 2nd one. We considered giving the current one away, isolating them from the rest of SBI! and the AG.
Either way, though, we'd be competing directly with Wix, Yola, and all the others free sitebuilders. It would almost surely fail AND distract us (big project) from our main goal.
We are considering a similarly-reasoned, but different, approach. Develop an "SBI! for everyone else" version. In that version...
We don't care what sitebuilder you use. It really does not matter - the actual content is so much more important.
DAY 6 would just lay out the principles of what you need to accomplish. The rest of the AG would be unchanged, save for recommendations for tools that replace ours.
But the details aren't important. The key point...The magic of success lies not in any sitebuilding tool. It lies in all that is wrapped around it (info/process, tools, guidance in forums, Support, updating).
5) Claude, yes...https://forums.sitesell.com/viewtopic.p ... 2#p1364492
See above answer.
It would actually be easier to do than SBI! for WP, where we watch updates and give green lights after testing, evaluate plug-ins, cover what's new, etc.
Instead, we'd just leave hosting and sitebuilder to the solopreneur, conveying the important principles. GoDaddy, 1&1 or Wix, Weebly. Only DAY 6 changes.
6) Vivi, it's hard to know how well SBI! for WP owners do since we don't know their domains. There's no reason that they should do less well since they do the same thing AND we add the extra benefit of covering the ecosystem for them.
OK, I gotta run, let's reel it back in to the topic of this thread. I'll try to answer the second page collectively. First thought...
I'm not slamming Wix. It's a fine product for the right people.Wix commercials are misleading
- although (as I said above), the 2017 SuperBowl ad is not as blatantly false as last year's - and it's MUCH more entertaining.
But when they imply that building a business is easy, they mislead everyone except those who simply need a brochure site (i.e., anyone who does not need more traffic, or anyone whose time is not worth the traffic.
So does THIS year's claim stand up? Here it is...
To succeed in a disruptive world, Wix makes it easy to create your own stunning website.
A Wix site is not going to help a local business "To succeed in a disruptive world."
I'm not trashing Wix. They make it easy to create a stunning website.
But that does not, has NEVER, helped anyone "succeed in a disruptive world." Generation after generation of site builders have stressed how beautiful their sites are.
But that won't be nearly enough "to succeed in a disruptive world."
By the way, thats's a great "what did they mean by that" sentence.
The reasonable assumption is that it is meant to leave people with the following impression...
"Stunning website will take me to success."
No, it won't.
I'd like to answer everyone in detail, but I've really got to finish my re-work of DAY 5, including the integration of Growth Hacking into it.
Then we'll be ready to release the first half of that! If Wix is doing things like this to justify their claim, anyone, please let me know
So just quickly I'll try to answer by focusing on the main topic of the thread...
Unlike Wix, we never make the claim that SBI! is easy. Actually, we specifically say that it's NOT.
That's because building ANY type of business is NOT easy. But we do simplify it as much as possible. So...
By breaking it down into steps, each one of which is do-able, the entire process becomes do-able. Not easy, but do-able, one step at a time.
And that process builds into a rate of success that is beyond "second to none." The difference truly is dramatic.
It doesn't matter whether someone comes here as a raw beginner, or a person who knows a ton (but has yet to succeed, of whom there are likely at least hundreds of thousands).
SBIers know far less than most folks who really follow "internet marketing." But they know the right stuff and understand the right order to apply all the principles at the right time to build a successful online business.
They focus their time on what matters. Part of SBI!'s performance levels are due to incredibly simple reasons. Focus is one of them.
And yes, there are some folks who arrive super-knowledgeable already...
Most of them don't visit the forums. Many of those already know 99% of what's in the AG. But...
They also "know" wrong information or assign too much importance to a detail because someone else said it was so important. For them, SBI! is just as valuable...
For the first time, they do it rigorously and in the right order. They avoid mistakes. They make better decisions. And so forth.
The big bottom line is that...
1) Both tools are great at what they do. I agree 100% with that.
2) Re SEO...
I saw a note that Wix has an SEO component. So does WP, etc. But on-page analysis has long been the ante to getting into the card game. As I said in my original post...
A stunning website is the equivalent of an immaculate stadium WITHOUT the Super Bowl. You still have to fill it with Content (that people need/want).
Winning at the Search Engines actually starts at DAY 2 of the AG and and continues all the way through to DAY 9. With RankBrain (Google's Artificial Intelligence), our core concepts are only going to stand us in better stead.
There is NO such thing as an SEO component for that. Only an entire process and deeply ingrained KEEP IT REAL and OVERDELIVER philosophies.
No other builder provides the Action Guide, which is an important piece of SBI! (info/process, tools, guidance in forums, Support, updating)
So I guarantee that their sites, and speaking specifically about SBI!-like solopreneurs, build negligible search traffic, on average, across their entire user base. The numbers above would suggest that. And then there's our 15 year experience (not counting the 5 years of books)...
I have no idea why 15 years of witnessing our traffic advantage would change now, nor how suddenly Wix could deliver some sort of success at the SEs. It's less likely now than ever to be the case.
I would not be surprised if we had more Alexa Top 1M than all of Wix (after removing those folks who "would not be right for SBI!"). You can sort of get at that answer...
Math-wise, if we assume that SBI! had zero impact on traffic compared to Wix, they should have 200 times more sites than us in the Top 1M (they have 200x more paying customers with domains). That means that Wix should have 200,000 solopreneur sites in the Alexa Top 1M should be Wix sites.
That's 4x the TOTAL number of solopreneurs in their, while their share of the space is 2M/50M = 4% (or 1/25).
About the right to market as they see fit...
I agree in one sense. Every company puts its best foot forward. Wix has the right to market as it likes.
Its best honest foot is "stunning website," not "succeed in a disruptive world."
Stunning website = easy ≠
The first part of the equation is true. But not the second...
Please don't get me wrong...
I'm not trashing the tool. I simply disagree with the misleading implications (which were worse last year). This isn't new, of course...
There has ALWAYS been tons of that hype online - but not by "the big guys." It worries me to see major companies start to bring this type of messaging to the mass market via TV.
I'm not slamming the product, just the message in their ad.
I guess it'll be a long wrapup. I'd like to share some perspective...
SiteSell started 20 years ago. It was a thriving publishing business by 2000. We could have continued to grow in ways that I can only guess at. And I would have hated it after reading what I've come to call "the survey"...
It showed us that folks loved the books, but didn't actually use them. That fact combined with a belief that I had long held...
We have a crappy educational system. It fails to bring out the best in everyone, fails to inspire you with your strengths, some of which are more important than acing a test.
By focusing on one narrow part of what it takes to succeed (at school), most end up (through no fault of theirs) pegging themselves into holes of limitation.
Henry David Thoreau struck me with that first, in high school...
"The mass of (wo)men lead lives of quiet desperation."
(Yes, I added the "(wo)" - Thoreau would do it today if he were around.
Pegged... Many are OK with that, or they don't think about it or they don't want to do anything about it.
Some do. I have a profound belief that many of those people are capable of far more than they were "trained" to believe was possible.
I also believe that the online arena provides unparalleled opportunity for solopreneurs who want more out of life, who want to work on something they love while building something that impacts their lives positively.
It's cheap so it's accessible. But it's a hard space to figure out, and it's only going to get harder.
By doing what we do with SBI!, we remove obstacles that stop most who have BAM. It takes a long time to figure out how to succeed online. And it's a field loaded with mines.
It took us a long time to show folks how to skip that learning curve. Coincidentally, I'm doing a major re-work of DAY 5. We do minor updates (deletions, additions and modifications) regularly.
They generally start in the forums, get advanced into
articles in one of the HQs. Sometimes, when it's core, it's
integrated into the AG. To make sure that those who have
passed that part of the AG know it, we include it in the
SBIX. Future SBIers get the "update" without knowing that
it may have been added, say, yesterday.
The key is REPRODUCIBILITY. If only a few people can take something and make it work, it's not a reproducible system. The books were like that.
But when we take the process and organize it IN ORDER instead of CHAPTERS, aha!. We break it all down into a series of info (for understanding) and steps (for execution).
It has been the experience of a lifetime.
And if there's one thing that we've learned, it's that business-building is not easy. The best one can do is simplify and eliminate...
1) simplify down to the what you need to know and do, pruning out all that is not necessary or wrong. Stop the non-stop noise to enable folks to focus.
2) eliminate the roadblocks (niche selection, keyword research, monetization, branding, how to write to connect and so on all the way through the AG. For example, MYCPS! was a major breakthrough - that sounds silly. But the forums had tons of posts about "help, I can't write."
We don't get that anymore.
When you simplify and eliminate, you enable folks with BAM to do absolutely amazing things. Our history has born that out.
And we keep looking for ways to make it better, to help make YOU better.
I do not believe that any other business enables individuals to do what YOU do. It does not interest me to own a business that makes a lot of money by selling books, not if they just suck people into trying to do something at which they're going to fail.
I have always been selfish when teaching. I've taught the elite...
- baseball in "Little League" - I coached the cream of the cream. You show your shortstop how to turn a double play to the inside of the bag and the outside once. He has it perfect by the end of practice. Kids don't miss cutoffs. And the team plays amazing baseball. I still get an email every now and then from some of the kids - it's their memories that still move me.
- interns - Being an ER doc was fun. There's only one bigger impact that saving a life. And that's teaching bright kids how to do the same. We taught them how to connect dots, how to THINK, how to do procedures. Watching them grow was its own reward.
- even golf - This was my first experience with the truly gifted. I was both jealous and proud of that young man when he was voted "most improved player" after winning the biggest tournament of the year in Quebec golf. I could have played golf for decades except that "Interwebs thing" came along.
- and even my little experiment, PennyGold - there are probably only 50 who still do it more than 20 years later. Some do it full-time and are happy and wealthy because of it. I could not imagine doing something that produces nothing for the rest of my adult life. But THEY learned a skill that changed them. The letter and gifts (always some kind of gold coin) are priceless.
- and solopreneurs with BAM. This is by far the most rewarding, at times depressing and stressful, experience of all.
(While it took an amazing team to make SBI! happen, I'll stick with the first person singular because these are my personal beliefs.)
What makes it so rewarding. You deserve better. BAM separates you from everyone else...B
rain - You need to know and ideally love something that you do (or have experienced) in your life. Possessing that knowledge is not unusual, but having a driving passion starts to separate you from the pack.A
ttitude - There's a remarkable positivity about SBIers. You're optimistic and energetic. Even when times are tough, there's a sense that things will turn. In short, you're people I want to know.
Negative people are just draining - they make us all tired. Ultimately, this trait shows up in their writing, in social media - it can't help but be reflected in what becomes their "Brand of One." Thankfully, we just don't seem to attract them.M
otivation - Having your own business is not purely about money. Money is just a way to measure how close you are toward goals. Those range from the material (buy something) to the important (retire on my own terms) to the profound (be free).
Whatever your goals may be, they drive you. YOU drive you.
BAM is a rare commodity. Despite that, it's usually not enough to succeed. And SBI! is not enough to succeed if you do not have it. But together....
Remarkable things happen.
THIS is the right home for folks with BAM. You are the "elites" (I use that word with only the most positive of connotations) that I love to help and coach. Because I love seeing progress.
I"m NOT a great teacher. Great teachers don't insist on having the deck stacked in their favor. But here's the thing...You, of all people, were never meant to be pegged into a hole for the rest of your life.
You sensed that. You looked. You may have failed elsewhere along the way. And then..
Even then, about 15-20% give up by DAY 3, almost all for the same reason... "too hard/too complicated/too much work."
These are folks who'll get lured by Wix. We could do that, lure those folks in with an easy site-building system that gets a website up fast.
We'd make more money off them, true.
But they are still going to hit the hard parts eventually. I'll encourage folks who need it, but only because I believe they can do it. I'll never start fooling people just to suck more dollars out of them.
That probably makes me not such a great businessman.
Fantastic. I've explained why I'm neither a good teacher nor a good businessman!
OK, I can speak for all SiteSellers now. Everyone shares the thrill of your success. We all talk about the regular SBIer stories that we post to the blog.
We know we make a difference to the very people who deserve it most. And THAT is a tremendous feeling...
We can enjoy it, but we can't take any credit. We only enable... YOU are the one who MAKE it happen.
It takes work and perseverance, inspiration and perspiration, working through ups and downs
It's simply NOT easy to build a successful online business.
And I'll object to anyone who suggests otherwise.
Thanks everyone. I really didn't intend to write all this. I guess it'll be a late night to finish DAY 5.
All the best,
P.S. Harvey, I read your last note that came in while I was writing all this. The thing is that if folks get sucked into Wix, believing that a stunning Web site is going to make them successful, they get invested in that site that they built.
And then they DO get sucked into the whole guru thing. There's no other choice - they've got to start looking around.
I remember what it was like in 1995-6 when I first started learning this stuff. There were already folks pushing all kinds of info, good and bad. I bought some crappy stuff.
It was easier to persevere in those days. The noise is infinitely louder now.
That touches the very reason why I object to the ad. And THAT is what this thread is about. I simply objected to the messaging of the ad.
Now, though, it comes dressed up in an exciting little movie with actual movie stars and you finish in such an upbeat mood...
That's way more powerful than those gurus.