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Progress Thread Growing A Web Design Business From Zero

Discussion in 'Progress/Execution Threads' started by dmichaelmccann, Feb 6, 2018.

  1. dmichaelmccann
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    dmichaelmccann Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Hey everyone,

    So I'm creating this thread to track my progress growing my web design business from zero.

    First off a little background on me:

    I'm an 18 year old high school student, and I have never made a single penny online, so I'll be learning a lot as I go. I started learning to code back in December 2017, and so far I have taken the courses on @Fox 's gold thread on web design that he recommended, along with the Fox Web School course, so I have a decent knowledge of HTML/CSS along with some sales.

    Last week I decided that I was ready to start providing value to businesses and I decided to get on upwork to start. I read through @SinisterLex 's gold threads and watched his youtube video's on starting from scratch, and I managed to get approved on my first try two days ago. Over the last two days I've taken some tests, written a "you" focused bio, and have gotten everything ready to send proposals starting today.

    End Goals:

    My goal for this business right now is to create a full time income for myself so that I can become financially independent, and use the money I earn to start up a fastlane business in the future.

    I'll be updating this thread pretty frequently as I go so that everyone can see the whole process, from never having made a single sale to hopefully soon making 6 figures/year with this business.

    Although I've never made money online or outside of a job before, I'm doing my best not to let that scare me. It can honestly feel like a big leap to move ahead with something like this having never done anything like it before, so hopefully seeing the process in this thread will inspire people in the future who are having doubts about if they can be an entrepreneur.

    Please feel free to ask me any questions or offer advice.
     
  2. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Great. Cool to see a new thread on web design from a beginners prospective.

    Tag me if you need any feedback but I will be watching this thread closely.

    Where are you at right now with sales?
     
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  3. dmichaelmccann
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    dmichaelmccann Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Right now not super far but I think I have a good base. Along with the material in your course I've read Cashvertising and Spin Selling. I have several other books lined up for the next few months on both copywriting and sales but I would love to hear any that really helped you out.

    A big skill that I am focusing on in the near future is phone skills. I did some recordings and found out that I don't sound too great and get a bit nervous sometimes, which would hurt me on cold calls. I'm going to keep going with the calling exercises you gave in the course until I get good at them but I wanted to start taking action which is why I chose to get on upwork.
     
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  4. dmichaelmccann
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    dmichaelmccann Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Quick Update:

    This afternoon I sent out my first 3 proposals on upwork; I'll post here anything comes out of them. Also, about an hour ago I received an email from upwork saying that I had been welcomed into their rising talent program? I found this confusing as I have no work history on the platform, but I'll take the badge as I'm sure it's worth something when applying to jobs.

    Another observation I had was that over half of the websites that show up on my job feed are for wordpress, so I think that will be a useful skill to add soon.

    The rest of this week I plan on working towards getting my first sale and 5 star feedback, and possibly sending out more proposals depending on the response to the first three.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
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  5. 1step
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    1step Gold Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass Summit Attendee

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    Offer to make the Wordpress sites for $5. You'll make like $.50 an hour but you'll get great experience and a lot of five star reviews. Explain exactly why your bid is $5 and you'll get lots of people to accept your proposal.
    In the future most of these people will need another site and they will likely come back to you.
    Once you do this enough times you will need to turn away work or get help to fulfill your clients work.

    This exact situation has happened to me on Upwork but on the purchasing side in another niche.
     
  6. dmichaelmccann
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    dmichaelmccann Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Hey guys,

    It's been kind of a tough past few days. I did get my first job yesterday, did it pretty quick, and got a 5 star review. However, it wasn't related to web design but instead one of those customer service ones for 5 dollars that I got invited to.

    I had a pretty brutal week in terms of work at school so I didn't have much time to send out new proposals until Friday (my first 3 got no responses). I sent out two Friday and two yesterday, really trying to focus on them and their needs. This time I also offered to do them all for 5 dollars and was very upfront about why. A few of them haven't checked their post since before I proposed so I'm hoping I'll get at least one response.

    I'm also struggling to find jobs that I'm sure are a fit for my skills. My feed is showing a lot of jobs that require advanced knowledge in languages I don't know (I'm really only confident in HTML/CSS), and of course I want to make sure I can actually help everyone I send a proposal to.

    I started on a udemy wordpress course Friday and have been moving through it pretty well. A large number of upwork clients want sites on wordpress and soon that will be a service I can also provide, which will greatly increase the number of people I can help.
     
  7. GWan
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    GWan New Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    Reading your post was like reading a summary of my current position (except I work full-time). I have also gone through Fox's course, and am starting on Upwork to try to build up a decent portfolio before trying to cold call local businesses.

    I would recommend going through both of Lex's freelance courses on Udemy if you haven't already.
     
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  8. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    I am going to jump on a call tomorrow with @dmichaelmccann and go over some things. I’ll come back afterwards and make a bigger post here when I got some more details.
     
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  9. dmichaelmccann
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    dmichaelmccann Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane I've Read UNSCRIPTED FASTLANE INSIDER

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    I had a good call with Fox yesterday afternoon. We went over some of the things I was struggling with and we decided that I should go in a new direction with the business.

    To summarize the main points:

    I'll be getting off upwork and will turn my focus to cold emailing and calling businesses. Although it is possible to make money on upwork, long term it will be better for me to start contacting real businesses that I can get results for. This will allow me to start charging higher prices after I complete my first few sites with proven results. I don't have any business owners in my personal network, so I'm starting with local businesses that have shitty websites.

    To get those first 3-5 clients I'm going to offer my services free for the first few and then very cheap. My goal in the beginning is to build my portfolio, help these businesses out, and prove to future clients that I can make amazing websites. With these first few businesses I will be very upfront, letting them know right away that I'm new to web design but I'm a local guy that wants to help them for free. It's a simple pitch that should get some responses.

    After those first few sites are finished, I'll have some good looking portfolio pieces that I can show to future clients. From there its all about showing the value a new website can deliver to their business. If I can communicate this effectively and then actually deliver that value, I should have no problem being able to charge premium prices very soon.

    Thanks again Fox for getting on the call with me and helping me work through all of this. I think this sums it up but if you have anything to add feel free.
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2018 at 10:26 PM
  10. Fox
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    Fox Legendary Contributor Read Millionaire Fastlane FASTLANE INSIDER Speedway Pass LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR

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    Nah that’s it. Thanks for taking the time to talk. I’m sure you will make this work.
     
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