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WEB SCHOOL Fox's 2019 Make $100k Starting Web Design from Scratch Challenge

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Fox

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After the success of @Lex DeVille's Upwork challenge, I decided to start one of my own...

Start a completely new web design business in 2019, get it back to making over 100k+ a year, and document the whole thing.

Pretty ambitious but I thought this over and have fully committed. It for sure won't be easy (I am actually quite nervous) but at the same time it will:

- Force me to take huge action and step up my game
- Show others what is possible and how to get similar results
- Cuts out a lot of the nonsense within the web design teaching/guru space
- Should be a good bonus lesson for people on here in making valuable content and growing an audience

This is a 100% real challenge - I will document the whole thing and as much as possible and share will client details, projects, successes and failures etc.

I thought over a lot what sort of content would best help people looking at web design and figured showing the "real behind the scenes" stuff would cut through a lot of noise. Having to start again will force me to share what exact steps I am taking and how the market is responding.

On top of this, I will be also offering some extra services like video production, photos, email marketing and automation, and branding and marketing.

So here we go!

Here is the first video outlining the challenge....


If the Fastlane forum wants I can also make extra videos/answer questions just for the forum on the making and results of the actual challenge - Youtube production and growth, how it links to Fox Web School, and so on.

Taking this challenge does link to what I do with Fox Web School as I am hoping to make more real content that stands apart from what @MJ DeMarco calls "bro marketing". As things progress I will share also how those results are also and how I am hoping to disrupt the web design educational niche.
 

The Abundant Man

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This is random but what is a really good easy WordPress Theme to use?
 
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Fox

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This is random but what is a really good easy WordPress Theme to use?
I actually use mostly HTML themes and don't use wordpress myself.

Elementor is really popular with my students and produces great results.
 

The Abundant Man

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I actually use mostly HTML themes and don't use wordpress myself.

Elementor is really popular with my students and produces great results.
I'm just having trouble that's all. lol
 

.B.

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This is random but what is a really good easy WordPress Theme to use?
I have only used it with 1 client so far, but Divi was very user-friendly and the result looked more stylish and more modern than the old client's website that had been built with Elementor 1 year before.

Now maybe the previous designer was responsible for the bad result, not Elementor
 

snam23

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Looking forward to this!
 
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.B.

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I will document the whole thing and as much as possible and share will client details, projects, successes and failures etc.

I thought over a lot what sort of content would best help people looking at web design and figured showing the "real behind the scenes" stuff would cut through a lot of noise. Having to start again will force me to share what exact steps I am taking and how the market is responding.
[from your youtube video description]
- I will sell web design (of course) but I will also offer some new services like video editing, social media marketing, SEO, and email marketing that I am a complete newbie in - This means I will have to improve my skills (and learn new skills) while also trying to sell them
It all sounds great!

You mention in the video that you will make a weekly episode.
It would also be interesting if at the end of each episode you could tell what you plan to do the coming week.
Since part of the real-life challenges is when things just take longer than planned, or when we need to change plans based on what happens...

Good luck with your challenge!
 

Arrived2015

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Start a completely new web design business in 2019, get it back to making over 100k+ a year...
A typo?

On top of this, I will be also offering some extra services like video production, photos, email marketing and automation, and branding and marketing.
Looking forward it, including these extras!

Always something to learn:smile2:

Two observations for you:
1) Hashtags (love 'em or not) are increasing on YT. Using them can certainly increase you to "...step up my game" with viewers finding your videos on YT in addition to the usual YT SEO. More on YT hashtags here

2) Also your email list join page. What's the reason for not having a reflective challenge webpage URL?
A tinyurl link comes across as not serious in my view or is that how ConvertKit works? Haven't used ConvertKit before.

Did you know you can leave the tinyurl as is and redirect it to a signup form on a newly created challenge optin webpage? Or does Convertkit like it's own signup page?
 
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RichieKastl

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Hey Fox,

I've been following your content for a while now and I'm pretty excited to watch you take this journey. I've been a full-time front-end developer for the past 5 years and I'm hoping to do what you're doing one day. I do have a couple of questions for you.

  1. How do you differentiate your services from Squarespace or Wix in a client's eye? If I was a business owner I'd look at the cost of making a Squarespace site vs hiring you to do my site for me and see that I could get a nice looking website for next to nothing. How do you get past that barrier?
  2. What kind of clients do you target and how do they find you? Or do you go to them?
 
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Fox

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It all sounds great!

You mention in the video that you will make a weekly episode.
It would also be interesting if at the end of each episode you could tell what you plan to do the coming week.
Since part of the real-life challenges is when things just take longer than planned, or when we need to change plans based on what happens...

Good luck with your challenge!
Ya good idea, definitely working on getting a good format so people know what to expect and its done consistently.

Thanks for the feedback.
 
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Fox

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A typo?


Looking forward it, including these extras!

Always something to learn:smile2:

Two observations for you:
1) Hashtags (love 'em or not) are increasing on YT. Using them can certainly increase you to "...step up my game" with viewers finding your videos on YT in addition to the usual YT SEO. More on YT hashtags here

2) Also your email list join page. What's the reason for not having a reflective challenge webpage URL?
A tinyurl link comes across as not serious in my view or is that how ConvertKit works? Haven't used ConvertKit before.

Did you know you can leave the tinyurl as is and redirect it to a signup form on a newly created challenge optin webpage? Or does Convertkit like it's own signup page?
1) Thanks, completely forget about these. Ill get on them.

2) ConvertKit (that is what I am using) has its own links but they are massive and messy looking. I figured clean it up a little with a TinyUrl. I just started this challenge but yes would be good to have its own proper landing page and legit sign-up. Thanks for the feedback on that.
 
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Fox

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Hey Fox,

I've been following your content for a while now and I'm pretty excited to watch you take this journey. I've been a full-time front-end developer for the past 5 years and I'm hoping to do what you're doing one day. I do have a couple of questions for you.

  1. How do you differentiate your services from Squarespace or Wix in a client's eye? If I was a business owner I'd look at the cost of making a Squarespace site vs hiring you to do my site for me and see that I could get a nice looking website for next to nothing. How do you get past that barrier?
  2. What kind of clients do you target and how do they find you? Or do you go to them?
I did a business on Wix here a while back. It answers what you asked perfectly...


For finding clients I am going to go slow and steady. I see a lot of people rushing in and making a 100 calls a day etc. That for sure is not my style. I only need around 20 projects to complete this challenge so I am going to be very strategic.

As to who exactly I will target I haven't decided yet. I will cover this soon though as its a step I need to lock in on.
 

Stargazer

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I've been a full-time front-end developer for the past 5 years and I'm hoping to do what you're doing one day.
  1. How do you differentiate your services from Squarespace or Wix in a client's eye? If I was a business owner I'd look at the cost of making a Squarespace site vs hiring you to do my site for me and see that I could get a nice looking website for next to nothing. How do you get past that barrier?
Your question only exists in your head because of what I have bolded

I promise you I have no idea what you are talking about. There is no barrier.

When sales people or Trades people start rubbing their chins and sucking air and scratching their heads when asked the price of their solution, half the time they are thinking the potential client is bound to know how easy it is to sort out themselves so I wonder what price I can un-confidently put forth.


Once we humans know something we start to assume everyone else knows what we do too.

Dan
 

InspireHD

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This is random but what is a really good easy WordPress Theme to use?
If you want to use Elementor, here is a page with a list of free themes they recommend using: Which Themes Work Best with Elementor? - Docs | Elementor

Elementor isn't so much a theme as it is a tool to build websites using a theme. In fact, from what I remember, you can't even use Elementor unless you have a theme activated on Wordpress.

I'm currently using Avada (paid). They have a builder built into it called "Fusion Builder." It was super confusing to learn how to use, but eventually I started to figure it out. Then, I decided to try Elementor. You can try the free version by installing a plugin. It took a little bit to figure out how to use it, but now I love it. I am working on my first paid site and it's a lot of fun putting the pieces together. I am going to buy the Pro version for the site since I need a few widgets that are only available on Pro. I'm not really sure what the purpose of needing the theme is as I think you can design from a blank canvas. That's what I did. I'm still learning Elementor, but I would recommend it.

I saw in another post you said you were having trouble. What are you having trouble with?
 

Chris Franklin

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I am excited to see your progress here. I was inspired by your previous thread (along with @Sean Marshall and @Lex DeVille threads) and started my journey earlier this week to build a service based business to help me live my desired lifestyle (i.e. not an employee anymore). I bet you leave me in the dust, but this will be fun to watch!
 

Roulf

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OMG Fox! I can't believe this. This is perfect for me right now.
I have kind of the same plan for 2019 but the difference is that I never coded before.
A friend of mine told me about Your Career in Web Development Starts Here | The Odin Project and I'm starting it as soon as I get back from my end of the year trip.

Seriously, your series is definitely going to inspire me and I want to provide a great product to my future clients.

I know all of what I'm saying sounds very generic but as soon as my journey starts off I'll create my own progress thread and I hope you'll follow it too. Thanks for this!
 

GuitarManDan

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Here's a great video showing how to use WordPress + Elementor that taught me everything I needed to know. Found this on a post by @GuitarManDan on the Fox Web Inside Group on FB.

Elementor has been great for clients that I've worked with. I prefer to use HTML (I've been following Rob's courses and really learned from him)... but some clients are dead set on WordPress (or they're looking for functionality that is much much easier for WordPress than a static site.

I even went as far as buying Elementor Pro after a really good month which has made my life so much easier.

@Fox so excited to follow along man! I know you're going to kill it.
 

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About themes- if you're like me and want to start from more or less blank (but not really code HTML for everything), SiteOrigin Page Builder is also a good tool. It is visual page builder, you add rows, divide them in columns by any ratio and insert any element in them:






That way instead of editing fancy themes with a lot of dummy content and getting lost by too many options you learn by building up, header to footer.
Basic theme using this: Vantage by SiteOrigin


Great work @Fox ! This will be GOLD by about May 2019
 
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Fox

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Screen Shot 2018-12-05 at 08.44.24.png

Doing good so far - I'm up about 150 subs since that video went up.

I think people like the idea of a challenge like this and showing the real side of starting a new business.

Starting to record episode 2 today which will be on my strategies and the systems I will be using to hold myself accountable.

Still nervous (I am actually pretty camera shy) but I am feeling good about this project.
 

therealmark

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This is awesome @Fox

I’m definitely subscribing to this thread!

Quick question: You mentioned earlier in the thread that you use html templates. Is the content populated through a CMS of some sort or just hardcoded into the template files?
 

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