Feel stuck after learning HTML&CSS? Here’s how to create websites on your own

You have read a few books on HTML & CSS and know how to create websites yourself.

You know how to find the resources you need (when you don't know what to do).

The thing is, you are not sure where to go from here.

Every book and article you read is just the same stuff: explains html, tags, and css selectors, properties etc.

More front-end matters and less what you truly feel missing… an answer to the question that made you reach for books in the first place.

Now that you know HTML and CSS what is the next step to actually start creating websites yourself?

Do you have to learn how to:

  • lay them out
  • design them
  • put everything together?

Or is there something else?

Continue reading “Feel stuck after learning HTML&CSS? Here’s how to create websites on your own”

I’ve got my portfolio and website online. What is the next step to attract new clients?

So you’ve had several freelance gigs and have sorted out your website. You’ve got most of your previous jobs through services like oDesk or through meetings in-person. Now that you are happy with putting yourself out there you want to know the next step as to attract new clients.

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I quit freelancing—How I created a profitable software product to escape "clients from hell" and their boring, crappy projects

Summary: Many freelancers are having trouble with clients. I was one of them. I got so fed up with the fact that I went on to fire all my clients, brute forced trough my insecurities and created a digital product which replaced my freelancing entirely. Moreover—it became a source of more freelance work that I can easily tap into, in case I want to go back.

This is my story:

How I succeeded in the world of OpenCart extension/theme developers without prior experience

For the first year out of the university I had been freelancing full-time as a web designer—mocking up sites in Photoshop and later building them in HTML. Sometimes even going further down the road to WolfCMS, but nothing more complicated than that.

I wanted to earn $1000 per month. Most of the time I was short of reaching that goal. I decided I should put more work in.

After working gruesome 16 hour days and feeling the burnout and disappointment, the thought of "This is not the way to go…" started creeping in.

Continue reading “I quit freelancing—How I created a profitable software product to escape "clients from hell" and their boring, crappy projects”

And I thought we don't have money for advertising…

Yesterday I had a conversation with another friend of mine—she is providing customer service for Google AdWords. In the middle of a talk about the most common problem people have with the product it hit me—”We can advertise! But wait, we don’t have the budget for it…” Not so fast cowboy. Think first!

My biggest takeaway from the conversation was that if we want to make omframework.com our main sales channel and avoid OpenCart.com’s marketplace we can use the same amount of margin they take from us(sales commission) and feed an AdWords campaign with it. The marketplace is costly and especially business-model limiting, despite bringing in a lot of sales.

Running the numbers, the budget per sale becomes unexpectedly big for a business with our scale. After all we are just a product company with a very niche offering.

The actual size of the billboard

OpenCart.com takes from us 20% of the sale price.
The cost of having Gumroad as an alternative sales channel is 5%+$0.25 on every transaction.

So, our customer acquisition budget is 20%-5%-$0.25 = 15%-$0.25 = $11.6. A quick CPC research using the Keyword Ideas Tool in AdWords told me that the average price of the keywords I am targeting is around $1.44 which means that if we have around 12.5% conversion rate from AdWords traffic everything will be in balance.

$11.6 is a good baseline to start from. There are other ad networks, too, yet this is not that important for the moment. What is important though is where to start? Obvious answer—keyword research. Not so obvious—where to research for them?