Saturday, April 11, 2009

What is the Lemonade Stand of the Internet?

Everyone has done a lemonade stand or gotten a drink from one. It is the definative small business example and it is a cultural icon for the entrepreneur. So much so, that it is used in schools to teach business issues. But thinking in terms of current business reality, it makes me wonder:

What is the online equivilent for the lemonade stand?

If I look thru my list of Online Revenue Models I see that some are easier to implement. Some things which can generate revenue quickly as a small one person shop. These are different from those things that take some other large component to make it work quickly:

Short term opportunity or easier to do:

As opposed to Longer term harder to do things:

The great things about the lemondade stand is that the goals are clear, the process is clear and it ends up being all about execution.

Looking even closer at the list, it seems that ads and donations are the quickets and easiest.

  • 4. Ads -> Set up a Blog and turn on ads
  • 15. Donations - Ala NPR / Public Radio -> Put up a donate button

A little more work:
  • 5. Sell a product directly -> Requires fullfillment
  • 6. Sell a product Indirectly -> Sign up with Vendor to resell product
  • 7. Subscription -> set up a subscription, membership

While both Ads and Donations require you to create content that is valuable to the reader and then to attract an audience, it seems that ads generate more revenue for the level of work.

This Suggests that suggests that the Lemonade stand of the Internet is to create a Blog and put up ads on it.

The steps to this would be:
  1. Set up a bank account to keep all the revenue in, keeping money separate from the personal money.
  2. Sign up for Blog software - Let's use Google Blogspot -
  3. Sign up with Ad provider - this is a part of blogspot by clicking on monitize. Ads will be inserted into the blog.
  4. Write content that is valuable to an audience.
  5. Spread the word that you are writing and build an audience.

Does this seem like the simplest revenue and business model on the internet? Would this be the canidate for the "Online Lemonade Stand"?

What would your choice be?

How to make money on the Internet or What is you Revenue Model or Monetizing your web app business models.

What are the different meta models for generating revenue from a web page or an online business? I have been collecting a list. I have been planning to write about it in detail, but I just saw a post that makes it clear that I should just get the list out and then work on the additions later.

I was sent a link for this article:

Which is interesting, but more complex than I was working on. In double checking the list and comparing it to the list I was working on, I did not find any new models. They seperate out on other axises , and go into more details. For example, I consider "Licensing Content" to be "Selling Something directly". However, I am still looking for more large scale models to add to the list.

Here is the list of all the meta catagories that I have been able to identify:

When looking at various sites that are generating revenue, I think that each has a specific primary model for revenue, and several have secondary models. Some event get to three different pathways that generate revenue:

Company examples to understand the business model:

What websites do you go to and how are they generating revenue? What makes them sustainable in the long run?