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                                   A Home-Based Business Online


                                      Issue 94 : July 30

                                Sent to 10,577 Opt-In Subscribers

                                         Editor: Elena Fawkner
                                   Publisher: AHBBO Publishing
                                    Contact By Email

1.      Welcome and Update from Elena
2.      Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Business Plan
3.      Feature Article - Rethinking Free
4.      Your Questions Answered
5.      Tips for Newbies
6.      Subscription Management
8.      Contact Information

1.      Welcome and Update from Elena

Hello again and a warm welcome to all the new subscribers who
have joined us since the last issue!

This week's article may get some of you up in arms ... it's all
about why you should expect to pay for what you use online.
If you're involved in an online business that's primarily concerned
with providing information, however, you'll probably have a different
take.  In upcoming articles, we'll take a closer look at how to go
about charging for access to your content whether you have an
existing free-access site or are just in the planning stages.  For
this week though, "Rethinking Free" looks at how we got where
we are and why we need to rethink what "worked" in the past to
make sure we're still in business in the future.

Since this is a controversial subject, I'd like to invite feedback
on this week's article.  Your responses will be featured next
week (so, yes, please do include a short resource box if you
like).  If you'd like to comment on the "fee v. free" debate, send
your thoughts to me at

As always, thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy this week's

Remember, this ezine is for YOU!  If you have comments or
suggestions for topics you would like to see addressed, or would
just like to share your experiences with other subscribers, I want
to hear from you!  Please send comments, questions and stories
to Contact By Email .

2.      Home-Based Business Idea of the Week - Business Plan

Many people avoid preparing a formal business plan because they
are intimidated by the size of the task or they don't know where to
begin. While they may avoid preparing a business plan for so long
as they are the only ones who will be referring to it, when the need
arises to raise finance for their businesses, suddenly the necessity
for a properly prepared and researched business plan can no longer
be avoided. At this point, the business owner may seek the services
of a professional business plan writer.

If you have a background in finance and/or management you may
have the potential to be an excellent business plan writer. There is
certainly no shortage of quality resources available on the internet if
this interests you, ranging from the nuts and bolts of putting a business
plan together to software to make business plan generation a snap.

Useful resources:

=> Sites

About.com (Type "business planning" in the
search box. An EXCELLENT resource.)

=> Software

Plan Ware - Business Planning Software

=> Books

The Business Planning Guide: Creating a Plan for Success in Your
Own Business by David H. Bangs

The Complete Book of Business Plans: Simple Steps to Writing a
Powerful Business Plan by Joseph A. Covello Brian J. Hazelgren

Writing Business Plans That Get Results: A Step-by-Step Guide
by Michael O'Donnell


There are many more ideas like this at the AHBBO Home Business
Ideas page at free home based business ideas with more being
added all the time.

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3.      Feature Article - Rethinking Free

© 2013 Elena Fawkner

"I have had to change my email address to [deleted], as usa.net
is no longer offering their services for free, another indicator that
the internet business environment is not what it used to be."

This is an extract from a "change of address" email I received a
couple of weeks ago from a subscriber.  No, indeed, the internet
business environment is most certainly NOT what it used to be. 
More and more we are expected to pay for access to services we
used to be able to get (and expect to get) for free.

Why do we expect so much for so little online?  Because that's
how the internet evolved.  Originally a network of computers designed
to facilitate an exchange of information and resources between
academics, the fact that purely academic pursuits were the goal
naturally meant that it was perfectly appropriate for the educational
institutions involved to put that infrastructure in place without
expecting the end users to directly pay for the content.

As recent history has evolved, of course, the internet has expanded
WAY beyond its humble academic beginnings to its current status
as a primary medium of exchange of information, products and
services for virtually every sector of the economy.  How often do you
see an advertisement, whether print, radio or television that doesn't
give the advertiser's web address as a matter of course? 

Although business has become the hugely predominant exploiter of
the medium, the fascination with the technology has, until now,
somehow kept the focus off business basics ... you know, all those
minor issues such as actually making a profit and pesky details such
as hang-on-a-minute-how-are-we-going-to-pay-for-all-of-this?

So enamored were we, as consumers, with the sheer power and
brilliance of being able to access, with just a few keystrokes,
information on literally any subject under the sun that took our fancy,
coupled with the not-for-profit academic beginnings of the internet
revolution, the idea that someone, somewhere, presumably had to
foot the bill for all of this was nothing more than some sort of
abstract issue we needn't concern ourselves with.  It was someone
else's problem.  Someone else was profiting from all of this and
whoever that was should pay.  It really didn't dawn on us that we
were the ones who were truly profiting.

This "free" mentality was a major contributor to the downfall of the
first e-commerce wave.  Venture capitalists, probably more caught
up in the promise of this bright new technology than anyone, were
prepared to throw money at this thing with the curious blind faith
that somewhere, somehow, this new playing field was a source of 
riches never before dreamed of.  So quarter after quarter, year after
year, undeterred by the red ink dripping like blood off corporate
balance sheets, the VCs kept sinking more and more money into the
black hole, holding steadfast to their irrational faith that somewhere
in this brave new world was a rich reserve of untold wealth that they
would reap if only they drilled deep enough and long enough to reach
black gold.

The recipients of this free-flowing cash, of course, had to find a
way to make money so they could eventually pay it back.  Business
models were created that revolved around providing free content
(because the internet, after all, was a "free" medium) and charging
third party advertisers exorbitant prices for the privilege of displaying
their advertising to the vast numbers of site visitors clicking in and out
of their websites every few seconds.  Perfect!  Site visitors receive
their *entitlement* of free information and we'll make our money from
advertising revenue, these site owners decided.

What they didn't count on, however, was that the "free" mentality
of online consumers brought with it a built-in resistance to actually
paying for *anything* online.  And that included the products and
services offered by these high-paying advertisers.  Disillusioned with
the disappointing return from their online advertising ventures,
advertisers began to cut back their online advertising budgets and,
lo and behold, the website owners experienced dwindling revenues. 
Dwindling revenues meant they couldn't service the exorbitant finance
costs associated with their oh-so-generous venture capital loans,
the VCs finally woke up to the reality that money was generated
online in just the same way as it was generated offline (payment for
products and services) and decided to cut their losses, calling up
loans.  Mega web-based businesses went out of business left, right
and center, finally culminating in the great e-commerce shakeout of

So, for those with web sites and ezines providing information and
relying in large part upon advertising revenues to make profits, the
(temporary) advertising squeeze has created something of a
challenge.  If these publishers don't receive a return on their
investment from advertising revenue, what happens?  Yep - they
start looking for alternative sources of revenue and that means
charging the end user.  Such sacrilege!

Well, I'm here to say it's nothing of the sort.  Of course we should
pay for what we use.  Western nations are capitalist societies of
capitalist consumers.  Why on earth should we expect someone
to put in the time and effort of providing a valuable service or product
without compensation?  Do we really think that all those great web
sites out there are nothing but a hobby for their hard-working owners? 
Some of them are, admittedly, but many belong to hardworking
people, wanting to provide a valuable product or service but yet get
paid for their efforts.  By someone.  If not advertisers, then all that's
left are the end users ... those who, when all is said and done,
directly benefit from the service.

So, what does this great counter-revolution mean for you and your
business?  Well, for you, it means get used to the idea of paying for
what you use online, just as you do offline.  For your information-
based business, if you're not generating enough income from
advertisers, it means get used to the idea of charging for your content. 
And don't apologize.  You work hard and are entitled to be paid for it.


** Reprinting of this article is welcome! **

This article may be freely reproduced provided that: (1) you
include the following resource box; and (2) you only mail to a
100% opt-in list.  (Articles are no longer being made available
via autoresponder due to large numbers of bounced mails due
to full mailboxes.)

Here's the resource box to use if reprinting this article:


Elena Fawkner is editor of A Home-Based Business Online ...
practical home business ideas for the work-from-home

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4. Your Questions Answered

Mary writes:

"[I read] your article of July 2nd, great hints and ideas to make
your home-based business seem large to the narrow-minded
customer.  [Ed note: Mary's referring to the article, "Creating a
Corporate Image from Your Spare Bedroom" which is available
at the AHBBO Article Library at http://www.ahbbo.com/articles.html].

"My question lies however, with the difference between
being a corporation or being incorporated. What is the difference
between the two? And can you "just" call yourself an incorporation
or must you file papers with the government to be called such?
Thanks for your help!"

Answer (applies to U.S. readers only - check with your attorney
for local differences if you reside outside the U.S.):

No, there is no difference between being a corporation and being
incorporated.  And no, you most certainly can't just refer to
yourself as a corporation - you must incorporate.  To "incorporate"
simply means to form a corporation.  This involves an incorporator
(i.e., you, the business owner, or your attorney) preparing and
filing Articles of Incorporation with your Secretary of State,
preparing bylaws (which are the rules that govern the internal
management of the corporation), appointing directors, issuing
shares to shareholders, appointing officers and many other formalities. 
There are a lot of good reasons to incorporate, primarily to limit the
personal liability of the shareholders to the amount of their capital
contributions and taxation benefits.  But you should not attempt
this exercise on your own if it's new to you.  Consult your attorney.

The alternative to incorporation is to do business under a fictitious
business name.  This is ONLY required if you want to carry on
business under a name other than your legal name.  Both
individuals and corporations can file fictitious business names.
It is generally a simple matter of filing a fictitious business name
statement with your local county recorder's office and then publishing
the fictitious name in a newspaper of general circulation in the
county where the business maintains its principal place of
business once a week for four weeks.  Check with your attorney
for local regulations in your county though.

For more information on fictitious business names, see the
article "DBAs, TMs and dotComs" at the AHBBO Article Library.
It's at http://www.ahbbo.com/articles.html .


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5. Tips for Newbies

Break out of Frames. Ever visit a web site that's divided into
multiple sections with slider bars or a header that won't move?
These sites often offer links to other sites, but annoyingly,
those pages appear inside the first site's frame structure. To
break out of frames, just drag a link into the address bar of the


Tips by Tom Glander and Joe Robson of The Newbie Club. The
best Newbie Site ever to hit the Web.

6. Subscription Management


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** Reprinting of this article is welcome! **
This article may be freely reproduced provided that: (1) you
include the following resource box; and (2) you only mail to a
100% opt-in list.

Here's the resource box to use if reprinting this article:

Elena Fawkner is editor of Home-Based Business Online. Best business ideas and opportunities for your home-based or online business.

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