[quote author=Moondancer link=topic=30.msg88#msg88 date=1084734259]
Offer the best possible service, at the best possible price, while maintaining a straightforward, honest approach to people. I guess that's about as short as it can get and still make sense, .
I meant just a little more in depth than that, I suppose I should have specified. Do you believe in quick growth or do you favor a company who builds itself over time and grows? Do you favor the higher end situations or do you shoot for the cheap budget system, etc.?
I think slow growth is the best way to maintain cutomer retention. We've been in business almost 2 years now and while still small, only 1 customer has left us(we were glad he did), even the monthly payers have stayed with us. We don't believe in treating any of our customers differently than any other, small sites, large sites.. they are just as important to us.
If you grow too quickly, you don't learn who your customers are. Some can't even describe accurately what their problems or questions might be but if you take the time to know them, you can learn their brand of internet talk and decipher their questions. Plus you run the risk of poor customer service, overselling your servers, and having customers leave because the experience wasn't a good one.
As far as higher end services versus budget.... well, while we tend toward the lower end, we aren't the lowest you can find and I say that honestly. Our prices are set where they are to build enough profit from one server to insure that customer service doesn't suffer.. while the high end services... I think they need to reevaluate their companies.. prices of servers have gone down drastically as has everything else to run them.. they need to stop thinking in the 90's.
[quote author=CrazyTech link=topic=30.msg87#msg87 date=1084733595]
What's your philosophy for an online business?
Well, I will show you when I get back from basic training. I plan to open up my web site, http://www.SoaringUSAEagle.com/ and have web graphics, web page templates (design) and possibly hosting for sale. I will ask you guys what ya think and see if I can meet the general publics wants/needs.
I am excited about getting that going, but right now, 100% of my attention is focused on basic training and knowing I can get through it. It's going to be tough, I am going to hate it at times, but its all in the mind.. and I am getting it set.
SoaringEagle.. if you don't do the hosting bit of it, we are looking for web designers to link with since we are going to phase out basic web design over time and concentrate on CMS work instead.. at least for a few years.. we could sure use a good referral list and I've seen a bit of your work on here. Maybe we can work out a link exchange?
As far as basic.. well, my son was not a physically active person before he joined.. he wasn't overweight or anything but he didn't do sports, except for leisure swimming, stuff like that.. he made it through, . What you have to do when the times get tough and you want to quit, think of all the reasons why you are doing it. You'll be just fine,
Ok, Moon... I will definitely keep that in mind. I was thinking about buying my own server when I get home from basic, but then I have to get a friggin cPanel license and those suckers arent cheap... around $600. I think I may just stick with my friend, as he has a reseller deal, but it is rather expensive... $125 for the first year, and $100 for each of the following years. I will have to work that part of it out, but I really would like to work on web graphics and do web templates (design -- whatever).
Yea, as far as basic goes.... I am basically your son... I dont swim tho lol. I used to be in sports and stuff -- I'm not too worried because I am still pretty fit, and for being at 6,000 feet.... Sea level will be so much easier to breathe and thats what gives me troubles. haha
Well Soaring I can provide you with a little bit of experience in the realm of webhosting. I'd recommend that you start out as a reseller and hit the local markets up for hosting. You'd be amazed by how many think it costs and arm and a leg to get online with an international presence. They're shocked when they find it often costs them less to get on the internet than it does to buy a good yellow pages ad.
When you do move along to servers, you can often go to some of the larger dc's and other companies that bundle cPanel/Ensim/Plesk/etc control panels with their various packages. When you buy the server you already have the license provided via the company.
Anyways, that's just a few quick points. Feel free to chat with me more once you get ready, I'd be happy to help you out.
Yup, he's right SoaringEagle.. best way to start out is a reseller plan. There are some good ones out there to choose from.. some will even do a monthly charge instead of yearly... but if you can get one for $125/year and you know the service will be reliable.. that's really not a bad price.. I can't beat it.
I have recently started my first online business, TexomaEmployment.com. Its growing at a descent rate, as I started designing the website last January, having come up with the concept during Christmas of last year. We have our official lauch on July 12. I would have to say that I believe in offering the customer a competitive service for a competitive charge. Having said this, let me clarify. I do not believe in the concept of perfect, I think that as a business owner and entreprenuer, I have to strive to offer the best service that I can to my customers, at a competitive rate.
Product positioning also figures into this. While a common quote that has been used is the "best service at the lowest rate", I believe that charging to lowest rate can say something to your customer. This is not to say that all inexpensive products lack quality, but rather to say that there is a public presumption that they do. Therefore, offering a quality service or product at a discount can reflect badly on the business selling that product or service, unless the business takes sufficient steps to prevent this presumption from impacting said business.
I believe that Competitive Advantage is the best way to start and stay in business. Simply put, stay one step ahead of your competitors. If your competitor is not marketing heavily and you are, that is a competitive advantage that you have. If that competitor starts marketing heavily, counteract the marketing by offering a price point advantage, changing your product position, narrowing your prospects to obtain a higher $/lead ration etc...
From a customer stand point- I agree with Moondancer. She states that growing your business slowly is the best way to go because it improves and strengthens your customer relations. This point can not be overstated. As without customers, you do not have a business.
Yes, I am. My business plan calls for a unique approach of community building coupled with a service that is free of charge to most the members of the community. My primary site is about jobs and employment. Networking is the most powerful means of generating employment leads that there is. I want to leverage the community that will be established on my website with the prospect of job networking to create a unique website for job seekers.
[quote author=Ardenn link=topic=30.msg216#msg216 date=1087502231]
Yes, I am.Â My business plan calls for a unique approach of community building coupled with a service that is free of charge to mostÂ the members of the community.Â My primary site is about jobs and employment.Â Networking is the most powerful means of generating employment leads that there is.Â I want to leverage the community that will be established on my website with the prospect of job networking to create a unique website for job seekers.
Well, if you would like, feel free to download SMF 1.0 Beta 5 Public at http://www.simplemachines.org/download.php and if you have any question of how to install, I will be free to help for most of this evening, tomorrow, and throughout the weekend.Â I leave for basic training on Tuesday, but if we get it up and you have questions, feel free to post at SMF, or in here and CT may be able to help.
ok. I didnt really look to see if you were running a forum. I just glanced the sites over for looks. I havent really went for the content yet. I may later this evening if you would like me too.
YaBB SE was great... SMF is just that much better ;D
The reason I ask is I have a good friend who operates a business. He charges very low rates (sometimes I don't know how he profits) and he has scores of clients in almost no time. His host is only about a year old and it's safe to say there are at least 300 clients. I suppose that if he does it right some marginal profits can be made because of the volume of accounts sold but that's relying to heavy on selling. It's very appetizing to do something similar, but it's too dangerous IMHO.
I prefer the slow and steady growth that you all do. I think the strongest companies build their reputations and money around their products and not their prices. I think it's silly to engage in price wars because in the end you're the one who lowers costs and quality of your products and as Ard said, you devalue what you offer.