Building a Catalog of Online Products

How many times have you heard that you must have your own products in order to make money online? How many times have you seen someone offering a course on how to make big money writing eBooks? How many times has something about the pitch just seemed wrong? Or at least sounded a little like snake-oil?

Well, you’re right to question the concept.

Yes, you really do need to have a list and your own products in order to make the big money in internet marketing. But you’re never going to make a fortune with a single eBook. Sorry, it isn’t going to happen. At least it isn’t going to happen to the vast majority of us.

In order to make money over the internet, you need a catalog of online products. Not just one product but a line of related products. After all, once you sell one product to a person and turned them into a rabid fan, wouldn’t it make sense to try to sell them more products? In any other market that’s where your major sales come from. And the internet really isn’t any different. But to do that you need a product line, meaning a catalog of related online products.

But how do you do this?

In this article, I’m going to explain one technique for building a catalog of online products.

Creating an online product always begins with an analysis of your customers. It can be existing or it can be a predicted customer. In any case, you need to develop a picture of your target customer.

Once you’ve done that you need to identify their motivators. What is it that will make them want to buy your product? What problems are they facing? What is going to happen in their future that they want to avoid? What would they like to happen?

Step three is to determine a solution. How can your topic or product solve their problem? How can you create a teachable system for solving their problems, achieving their goals or avoiding their fears?

Okay, now you’ve got something to sell them. All that’s necessary is to turn it into a product. Or two. Or three.

Start by identifying what products you need to create to support this line. What will be your freemium? What will be your introductory product? What will be your midrange product? What will be your high value product? Now keep going. What will be your marketing products?

Now that you’ve got one product line defined it’s time to consider the rest of your catalog. Start by going down. How many other people can you sell this product to with only minor adjustments?

Then go wide. What similar products can you create that your customers might like?

Marketing Your Online Product

What is an online product and how does a person go about marketing one? That is often the question asked by those who are interested in creating digital products and then marketing them on the Internet. Here it will be explored exactly what an online product is and how you can go about marketing them online yourself.

An online product can have so many different meanings. For example, it can refer to any product that is sold on the Internet or it can refer to products that can only be sold online, such as digital products. For the explanation provided here, digital products or those that can only be sold online will be covered. If you’re marketing products that can also be sold offline as well, you can still get some pointers from this information which may be helpful.

An online product or digital product is one that Internet users purchase on the Internet and then download to their computer. There are also digital products that may not require a direct download though, such as an e-book that can be accessed as part of a website, rather than in PDF form. Digital or Internet products can include e-books, music, videos, software, applications or access to things such as training programs.

As for marketing online products, they can be marketed by using several different methods, including:

  • Niche marketing: Marketing by using very specific key phrases and terms on your website for that product only. A niche website doesn’t have any other products or services on it and the goal is to reach a very specific audience.
  • PPC marketing: Signing up for and using PPC (pay per click) advertising programs that are offered by the search engines and other websites. You only pay a fee when an Internet user clicks on the ad and visits your website.
  • Video marketing: Recording a video and uploading it to sites like YouTube to showcase your digital product.
  • Social media marketing: Using websites and services such as Facebook and Twitter to reach out to people and interact with those who may be interested in the online product that you’re offering.
  • Email marketing: Building a list of email addresses by providing a sign up box on your website and social media sites and then sending people who opted in to your email list emails regarding your online product or products.

When it comes down to it, online products can be marketed using the same manners of any other Internet product or service. There are free choices, such as blogging about your online products and then there are methods which can get quite expensive like PPC and flat rate advertising.

Creating Your Own Online Product

There are many ways to make money online. Gurus are always selling their own techniques. If you listen to one piece of advice you’ll go in one direction. If you listen to another you’ll do something different. And of course, each teaches that the other person is wrong. But there is one thing they all agree on. And one thing they all engage in.

If you want to create real income you need to start by creating your own online product.

But why?

Why do you need to go to all the effort involved in creating your own online product? Not just once but many, many times? That’s a heck of a lot of effort. So why?

There are a number of other ways to make money online. You can:

1. Sell physical products

2. Sell other peoples products as an affiliate.

3. Sell ClickBank products.

4. Sell advertising space.

And that’s just a few of the major methods.

So why would selling online products be so profitable in comparison?

Let’s start by examining the other methods. Selling advertising space is one way to make a few extra dollars. But to make real big money you need a great deal of traffic. And traffic of that magnitude is difficult to get and expensive to service.

So what about affiliate and ClickBank marketing? In both cases, you are getting paid for your own efforts. And that’s it. Effectively, you aren’t running a business you’re a commission salesperson. And you’re being paid like a commission salesclerk. You can’t leverage other people’s efforts. At least with affiliate marketing you are typically supporting a high ticket, high commission product. With ClickBank you’re not even selling that.

That leaves physical products. Typically physical products are other people’s products — you’re just the retailer. And like most retailers you get a portion of the sale — and only a portion. But even when the product is your own you’re faced with two problems. Fulfillment and shipping. You either need to pay someone to handle fulfillment for you. Or you’re going to have to take the time out of your own busy schedule. And the product still needs to be shipped. So the costs to you are very high.

Your own online products on the other hand don’t have these issues. Yes, you have to create them. But you control the process. In fact, that’s the byword for online products — control.

You control the marketing. So if you want to sell all by yourself you get to keep all the commissions.

On the other hand, if you want to sell through affiliates you determine how much commission you will pay them for sales. Not only that but you get to decide what constitutes a sale. And you get to leverage other people’s efforts to enhance your income.

Traffic also isn’t the issue that it is with advertising. Yes, you need to attract traffic but it’s a reasonable level not an extremely high level as it needs to be with advertising.

Online products don’t require any effort or cost for fulfillment. Basically you put the product up on the web, connect your sales process and you’re done. So shipping and handling costs are a thing of the past. And the occasional decision to create a physical product from an online product as a marketing shake ’em up. And unlike physical products there is very little cost involved in packaging or keeping an inventory.