SitePoint Sponsor

User Tag List

Results 1 to 21 of 21
  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Would this work ?

    I sort of posed this type of question in another part of this site, i didnt see this header and i think its more appropriot here...

    Let me see if i can explain what im thinking about doing and i look forward to all your input..

    I dont want to at this time give the exact type of community i want to build but ill give you and example of a similar type of business.

    Right now my competition would be broken up into like 6 boards on the internet run by 6 different people. They are all similar in the type of content and users.

    My example would be board #1 about Chevy Cars, #2 about Ford Cars, #3 about Dodge Cars, etc etc...

    I want to create a SUPERSITE where all 6 boards would fall under the same roof, but still be seperated. This supersite would have a homepage for each section of the site , maybe with different colors schemes etc but the same type of look. And be full featured with more than what they offering now, and ive thought of some interesting ideas as well.


    Now i guess my question is do you think this type of idea may work? Or do you think it coudl be a mistake and that people like niche sites?

    I know for a fact that alot of members from Board #1 check out board #2, etc alot and post friendly trash talk between the two.

    Im interested in generating revenue from the website obviously and im thinking of different ways to do this. I understand its difficult to generate income from messageboard types of sites.

    I plan to offer content, but the problem comes from the fact that they could prolly and most likely get this information free in other places.

    I wanted to offer some community features that would be only accessible via a premium model. I dont want to exclude the free membership from anything really , so was thinking that a small premium fee with added features would do the trick. Maybe like $5-10 per year per premium member.

    I was thinking about doing a REVIEW type of thing , check out pbreview.com for an idea of what im thinking. You will see that on some items they have a text link that will directly link up the item to a companys website to where they can get this item. This could drive income as well.

    What do you all think ???

    Help ))))))))))))))))

  2. #2
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hi Again,
    I definitely think you could add value by combining these boards into one site. Especially, if the users tend to cross discuss on different boards. It would offer convenience to the users to be able to log into one site to use all the boards.

    Selling access to content might be difficult unless you really have something unique. However, you could contact these other sites and ask them if you can repost their articles in exchange for advertising, etc.

    Like I said in the last post you might want to start things up and concentrate on traffic then work on the paid model once things are moving along.

    I'm still super curious at to what the subject matter of the site will be but I guess you have your reasons for not posting yet.

    You might also consider a similar business model that we use on SmellTheCoffee.com. We allow small coffee shops to sell thru our site in exchange for a small commission on each product sale.

    Good luck!

    Thanks,

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  3. #3
    SitePoint Enthusiast Darth Cow's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Swarthmore, PA, USA
    Posts
    40
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    If the sites are about subjects as related as different types of cars, then I see no reason why you couldn't just combine the site's subject areas into one more general site.

    The key thing will be getting traffic though, because a good model doesn't guarentee success. If you know lots of the users on the various sites, perhaps you could get some to come over and post on yours. You might also be able to advertise your boards on those sites, though that is frowned upon by many.

    If you want to charge, I would to have a community going strong before I added the premium features. That way, people would actually have some reason to pay for it. Otherwise, people are going to see your new small site and just wonder why they would want to participate on a site which has such an inflated sense of self value.

  4. #4
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yes i agree with both of you, and will definetly wait on the paid membership model untill the traffick and users are over. But im trying really hard to think of other income producing avenues by possible the aftermarket companys etc. Did you guys check out pbreview.com on that idea was mentioned ?

    Yes John, i really want to keep this quiet for the time being for competition reasons. I really dont know if any of the other site owners frequent here or not.

    John I like the model you have set up for your site and the features and yes im trying to think of a way to sell items on the site at a commission type of thing. The only problem i see with that is that I would then lose out on possible advertising links to other companys as i would be competing with them per sey.

    I plan on also making this site a 'superportal' per sey and want to have every link known to man about my area included. And then at the same time sell premium spots, or top 5 spots per sub category etc for monthly revenue etc.

    What do you think ?

  5. #5
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hi,
    Using the Car Model you described you could do the following to generate revenue.

    1. Online shop like discussed that allows partners to sell thru your site. The nice thing about this is that it provides the vendors with an additional avenue to sell products so it doesn't really compete with them. We have some coffee shops that sell thru the eCoffeeShop and also have there own online shop.

    As for selling advertising....I suggest you just keep the advertising display on all parts of the site except for the shop. You don't want a shopper to browse products then see an ad and leave.

    2. Classified ads for aftermarket parts and sales.

    3. Auction system might be a good revenue generator.

    I like the idea of the directory with links to the various companies, etc. One thing that might add some value is to also include additional contact information and descriptions like we do in the SmellTheCoffee directory. If you have the critical mass you could definitely sell premium spots. How were you thinking of setting up a directory? Regionally, Alphabetically, etc.

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  6. #6
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I wanted to thanks for your replys Johns its helps me alot...

    I have thought about a classified ads portion of the site, This could be good even for people that are selling parts off thier stuff now. The current sites DO have a section of thier messageboards *FOR SALE* or *WANTED* but it gets messy afterawhile and a classified script could clean things up for sure.

    I agree with the auction system, this could work as well. One thing i dont want to get into, is ive seen some very generic cheaply made up scripts for directorys, auctions and classified ads. Im not sure what i can find for high quality feature rich scripts to make this a top of the line site but cost effective for now as well. As far as the directory structure im not sure which way i should list the spots, 'regionally or alphebetically'. I will have to think on that one...

    Currently this is the breakdown of the competitions sites as far as members (not sure if this means awhole lot or not)..

    Site A - 11,000 members 74,000 threads and 723,000 posts

    Site B - says 4069 Members, 150,000 posts

    Site C - 11,000 members, 70,000 posts

    Site D - 2900 members, 108k posts

    There are a couple more site but a bit smaller than these...

    Was also thinking about adding a nice IS IT HOT OR NOT type script but for these 'cars' etc...

    I know this is going to be a difficult undertaking because ill need a main page and also was thinkinga homepage for each mini site inside...

  7. #7
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    No prob! I am usually browsing in here anyways trying to get the creative juices flowing. I have a lot of ideas but it helps me to get them typed out and hopefully the community.

    Here is my tentative list of the apps I plan on using on STC (SmellTheCoffee).

    Shop - http://www.oscommerce.com
    Forums - http://www.phpbb.org
    Auction - http://www.phpauction.org/gpl.php
    CMS - http://ez.no/products/ez_publish_22
    Banner Ad Management - http://www.phpadsnew.com/one/

    I still haven't tracked down the classified ad system I want to use but you might want to take a look around http://www.sourceforge.net or http://www.freshmeat.net. There are plenty of options but like you I want something that will look professional.

    Another thing to consider is the integration of all the apps on the site. Since STC is a community site we plan on designing a customized shell for login that will allow users to login once to shop, post, etc.

    Well, looking at those stats you probably have a market for what you want to do. Trying to capture that market will be the difficult and fun part.

    Hey, just noticed that you live in Maine. I lived in Cape Elizabeth for about a year.

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  8. #8
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    So is STC your day job or hobby your trying to generate enough income to make it your day job etc ? Sorry for being nosy, im just curious if i have a real chance in the future with lots of hard work.
    Also curious where your love for coffee came about, i find that interesting...


    Also, i have web design ability to pull off what im looking to do, but have ZERO programming ability. Are there guys on here that could integrate all the php software with vbullien etc to make this all work seemlessly ? Wonder how cheap/expensive that would be...

    Small world huh

  9. #9
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I do have experience running my own online store and was actually considering doing the following...

    I plan to contact a few of the medium online stores that are currently competing on the internet selling the types of products that my users are looking for and asking them to fullfill the orders for me. I actually would rather move quantity and offer lower prices than make a fortune off this portion of the site. If EVERYONE that came over KNEW that we were the cheapest around and it was part of the community etc it could really drive up membership etc.

    Could even use the store as part of the premium membership ???? If we offer the cheapest best deals around, would it be worth signing up and paying the $5-10 a year membership fee ?? Im not sure, im just throwing out items. I really have to sit down and map everything out....But at this point im trying to be extremely creative in my thinking..

  10. #10
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Actually...I had a consultation company for about 7 years that did Web Dev. and STC was one of my first big client's. Recently, the owner asked if I wanted to become the CEO and turn the company around so to speak. So I took on the challenge and still do a little consulting on the side to make ends meet until the site revenues grow and I can do it full time. I've been involved with the company on a consulting basis since the beginning so it sounded like an interesting avenue to go.

    I'm not a coffee "fanatic" but I do drink at least a pot a day.

    I am in the same boat. I have minimal programming skills as my company always sub-contracted that type of work. Web and Graphics design are my forte although I mostly subbed that out.

    You shouldn't have any trouble finding programmers here. I can probably refer some to you if you need. Otherwise, they have some great programmers here.

    Geez, I better get to work...Chat with you later...

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  11. #11
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    John, do you mind me asking what your using for software that allows merchants to sign up and have thier own type of storefront under your roof, where you pay them monthly etc ? Im just cruising your site....

  12. #12
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    We built that app from scratch a long time ago. It was written in PERL but has been modified so many times it really needs replacement.

    We allow Coffee Partners to setup their shops for free then just charge a small commission on each product sale. We have our own merchant account and CC processor so we dilly up the cash and write out checks to the partners at the end of the month.

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  13. #13
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Ok that sounds cool....

    I gota spend some time and think about how i want to attack all of this, its gonna be alot of work i know that...

  14. #14
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hey would anyone know what scripts were used to create the backend for trailsource.com ???? IM SO SO interested in this....

  15. #15
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Hey again,
    You might want to post this over in the ASP development forum. I took a look but that site looks like it was developed from scratch. If you view the source through out the site there are no signs of a commercial application running the site. Although, I might be wrong.

    Is there any reason you would go the ASP route with your site? If you are on a budget you might want to stick with open source technologies like we are doing.

    Thanks,

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  16. #16
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Yes i did post in ASP and thats what they told me too....I really would like to stick with open source stuff being on a BIG budget but im not sure if there is anything out there that will do or with mods do what they are doing. I dont care to have the 4 or 5 topics of trails, i only want one trail section. And i dont care so much abotu charging money for membership at this time.

    Im going to want to have all those scripts you listed for me installed and customized so they all blend into the colors and site...

  17. #17
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    The trailsource type of section could and will be a VERY nice addition and help to bring customers over from the other 4-5 sites i was telling you about...

  18. #18
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    What do you think about giving out like a free hotmail type of email to members ?

  19. #19
    ********* and Coffee Addict SmellTheCoffee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    256
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    We debated doing this a few years back but realized that there could be complications to this. We might try it in the future though when we have more staff and resources to support it.

    E-mail can be a management nightmare. You get spammers signing up and using your e-mail addresses as spam. Your host gets mad at you.

    Diskspace! Ug! We have our own server but if we gave out 2 megs per user and we had over 5000 users that would be 10gigs of space. (I think?) Plus think of all the resources that get used up.

    On the other side of the coin you could use Mail.com but then they get you into a contract that I recall is pretty stiff. Plus you lose control of your e-mail server.

    However, this could be quite profitable and advantagious for advertising your site. It's just a matter of logistics and resources that you want to put into it.

    Thanks,

    John
    "Your Internet Coffee Filter"

  20. #20
    SEO Link Building Master I, Brian's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Posts
    1,284
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Free e-mail will attract the spammers first.
    Internet Business Forums - free business help & advice

  21. #21
    SitePoint Zealot
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    maine
    Posts
    129
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    What do you guys think about PHPWEBSITE for CMS for someone totally new to this ?


Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •