I want to continue on with my 2012 Internet marketing predictions. In the last post, I gave you my thoughts on the ever increasing competition that’s jumping online daily to battle YOU for those precious affiliate commissions. And although that does warrant some degree of freaking out, I explained how you still have a shot at success, as long as you can break away from the pack of mediocre marketers.
Today, I’ve got another prediction. This one’s even bolder.
In 2012 and beyond, I foresee many (if not most) small and medium-sized Internet marketing service-based businesses closing up shop. Just like the “me too” marketer who got trampled in our discussion yesterday, these companies are soon going to make like dinosaurs and become extinct.
I’m not saying ALL of ‘em — just the smaller, unremarkable ones. Are you starting to see a trend here? Whether you’re a one-man show trying to earn 6-figures annually as a super affiliate or a small SEO company with 15 employees… the trend is going to be that the few elite dudes/businesses at the top are gonna stay at the top, gradually gobbling up more and more of the market share.
Meanwhile, the average guys/companies who’ve been coasting along, providing average services and making decent money for the past few years, are going to begin seeing a decline in sales.
Why am I predicting this?
Think about retail stores, for example. Back in the day, you could run down to Ma-and-Pa type shops or grocery stores to get whatever goods you needed. But when is the last time you’ve done that? Probably not for a long time, because all the little guys got swallowed whole by Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, Costco and so on.
Hindsight is always 20/20, but it makes sense when you think about it. I mean, why go to four different places just to get everything you need, when you could go to one store that has it all for about the same (or even less) money?
As much as I’d hate to see it, I believe the same situation will play out with businesses that provide any sort of online marketing services. One huge contributing factor is the advancements in technology.
(… story time… )
Just a couple years ago when I first got online, I was dying to have a cool-looking website. I searched and searched, and eventually decided on a web designer that had a pretty solid portfolio. About $2k later, I had myself a custom WordPress theme. I was stoked. Seriously, it was the gnarliest thing I’d ever seen and I was so proud to call it my own.
About a year later, I had the same designer whip up some graphics, a squeeze page and a few other random pieces to the tune of another $1k or so. Several months after that, we had the same guy redo the theme yet another time to incorporate my friend’s mug shot (since he was taking over blog posting duties).
Needless to say, there’s a good $4k — not to mention many weeks of waiting, back-and-forth emailing and major headaches — that went into that website (which is TopFatLossTrainer.com, in case you were wondering). And even after all that, I wouldn’t say that we’re all that happy with it. There’s quite a few coding errors that I’ve noticed, which is probably dinging us at least slightly when it comes to on-page optimization.
But now, just 2 years later, SO MUCH has changed.
In the past 5 months alone, I’ve personally changed the theme here on CashReview.net 3 times, without any outside help. In total, I spent just a few hours and less than a couple hundred bucks between all the themes. And guess what? This is the most pleased I’ve ever been with any site design, period.
Everything is precisely how I want it, and it feels great to know that I’ve got the ability to switch it up again whenever I see fit — without needing to go hire some overpriced web designer who severely lacks in customer support. Hell, I even managed to create my own premium squeeze page that I’m extremely proud of. You can peep it here: How I Make 6-Figures Online…
By the way, that same designer conned me into paying him about $80/month for hosting and the damn site was always crashing. And now, I pay like $15/month through HostGator to host about 40 different sites and not a one of them ever goes down.
Do you see what I’m getting at here?
The everyday people and businesses who need these services — like web design, graphics, search engine optimization, hosting, and so on — are becoming more educated, more empowered and are being presented with continually improving options when it does come down to shelling out a little coin.
It’s great news for you and I, but not so great for the businesses I’m referring to.
No one is going to continue forking over $3k for a website design that’s no better than a premium done-for-you theme like Thesis, which you can scoop up and install yourself for under $100 (read best WordPress themes 2012 if you haven’t already).
The way I see it, the best service providers that offer the most unique and rewarding experiences in every sector will steadily win over a growing portion of their respective market, hereby leaving all the mediocre competition fighting for the scraps. And unless you’re Wal-Mart, price cutting is definitely NOT going to be the solution for survival.
What are your thoughts?