Virtually everyone has the knowledge they need to make a fortune. Everyone has an interest, hobby or has knowledge about a particular subject. It could be anything, and I really mean anything! From gardening to model planes, childcare, from dog training to sports, everyone has knowledge that someone else wants. The problem is that most people have no idea how much their knowledge is worth because information online is worth much more today.
The internet has become a force to be reckoned with. This monster of mass consumerism is ever increasing and does not seem to be slowing down. U.S. consumers spent $748 million on online content (information) during the first half of 2003, representing a 23 per cent increase over the same period in 2002. With the rate that the internet is growing, just imagine what the figures look like today.
Last year, Jupiter Research forecast that paid-content web revenues will grow four-fold by 2006, from $1.4 billion to $5.8 billion. The crazy thing is – many people are only just waking up to this reality. Gone are the days when all websites offer their data free of charge, now the hottest information is reserved for those who pay!
So if you have a hobby or interest you are the perfect candidate and I have two words for you – subscription website.
So what exactly is a subscription website? Well, it is a site that charges members a fee to enter the site and view the specialist content. And what do they all have in common? They are bringing in a steady, recurring cash flow for their owners, month after month, from a few hundred to tens of thousands of dollars with an endless array of topics. Having a successful paid membership site is one of the best ways to make money online. A thriving subscription site can give you the steady income of a chief executive …. but without the work or stress levels!
For example if you had just 200 people paying you just $20 a month, you would have a steady cash flow of $4000 / month, month after month, rain or shine. Many people achieve this in the first month or two that their site is up and running. However, that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Many people have member only websites that produce 5 -10 times that amount of money! Choose the right topic and this could happen in your first 2-3 months. Let’s be honest; a steady cash flow is the key to financial security which is why the website is so superior to any other form of online product; it can mean a regular monthly income and best of all, no 9 to 5!
A subscription website is a combination of doing what you enjoy and sharing that knowledge with those who will truly appreciate it. The best subscription websites are run by those who have a passion for the subject matter they are supplying. This is the most critical decision you’ll have to make. Choose the right topic and you’ll have people rushing to give you money to enter your site, you will have no problem up-dating the site with new information, and in turn the site will remain fresh and exciting.
Find a topic that you are passionate about, and the odds are that enough other people are also passionate about the topic to make it a successful membership site. Since you are going to be spending time and effort building and maintaining your membership site, doesn’t it make sense to choose a topic that you enjoy?
But why would people want to pay for information when you can find pretty much anything at all on the net without any cost at all? It’s simple, the search for the info you require can be long and tedious. People are really paying for convenience, they want up to date information and they want it now. They also want the information to be comprehensive and original, they want to know that they can come to the site and that a particular topic will be covered thoroughly, they will genuinely learn more about the topic they have an interest in.
So why haven’t more sites jumped onto the paid-content bandwagon? A big reason has been the popular misconception that consumers won’t pay for content on the web. And where did this erroneous concept originate? From badly conducted research studies done by marketers and the media in recent years. Practically all of these surveys asked people who currently receive information and services on the web for free if they would pay for these services. Naturally, they gave the same response that anyone with any sense would give, which is: “I don’t want to pay for something that I currently get for free.” What a surprise!
The market is ripe and ready for those who catch on to this momentous idea.
Exceptionally high perceived value is the ultimate key. The paid online content offered must be so useful that users will be thrilled to gain access to it, will say “Wow!” when they do, and will experience instant value for money the very first time that they use it.
The best part is still to come! A subscription website can be run from home and once set up it pretty much runs itself. Software is available to run almost every element of your site automatically and membership software programs can reduce your workload by 75% – that can only be good news!
This funnel shows how the reader goes from browsing free content to being
a paid subscriber. When a prospect enters a website’s funnel of free content,
they discover that to reach the most valuable content, they must cross the
barrier to becoming a paid member.
The process works so well because the customer has already become involved in the process of narrowing down the information that he wants, selecting something that’s progressively closer to his desired information until, just before it’s in his grasp, he discovers that –of course– he has to become a paid member.
Topic ideas for a Subscription Website:
Newsletter Topics. If you already publish a successful newsletter, you are most likely a perfect candidate for a Membership Website. Placing your newsletter content, archives, and resources online in a ‘subscribers only’ website usually enhances the perceived value of your print newsletter to both current and potential subscribers.
Career Advancement. Perhaps the most frequent topic for successful subscription websites is career development. This includes sites that provide advice, tips, how-to’s, resource libraries, etc., about specific business skills or professions such as management, marketing, business start-up, financial services opening up a huge range of business opportunities. Successful career advancement sites usually focus on a very specific niche topics related to earning a living or bettering one’s career or business skills.
Personality based insider tips. A number of successful subscription websites are built around a well-known or respected person who provides subscribers with personal insights, tips, advice, information and opinions. In most cases, the person behind these sites has built a firm reputation and developed a following of people wanting access to the information this expert provides.
Downloadable Product Library. One of the more interesting subscription website models is based entirely on providing subscribers with a large library of downloadable products, usually computer programs, scripts, PDF files, audios, videos, tutorials or other materials that can be delivered digitally.
Hobbies / Leisure Activities or Collectors Sites. Concentrating on a particular and specific hobby or interest can be an excellent way to tap into a niche market. For example if your area of expertise is Carp Fishing this would be an excellent idea for a membership site, because it is a targeted market subject that will attract people with that specific interest, whereas the subject of fishing would be a massive area of expertise to cover in detail.
These are just a few ideas, truthfully, the possibilities are endless…