I'm working on a web project that will hopefully actually earn me some cash. However, I've noticed a lot of people talking about how their CPMs are going down (pricewise), and how they can't sell their inventory 100% anymore. In addition to that, it seems the only way to get a half decent profit is if you have a highly targeted audience. My venture will not have that.

With those things in mind, what's a webmaster to do? Trying to find an alternative to banner advertising revenue will be difficult but it seems unpreventable in this case. I really don't have much experience in the E-commerce/buisness field so I have few ideas of how I could make some cash.

Does anyone have any ideas as to how a site that offers a free service could make a little money? If it was something creative, I wouldn't have a problem contacting large sites to offer them a deal, but I need the idea first. What kind of advertising do these big sites want that could be offered (beyond the banners/buttons)?

Advertising on the net has got to change, banners simply don't cut it anymore. Not for the buyer, and not for the seller.