Tips For Success In Internet Business

In the past this took the form of two kinds of traveling salesman (the itinerant traveling salesman, working out of his wagon or truck, who brought otherwise unavailable products to places who simply could not economically travel the distance required to find those products….and the “drummer”, or “route salesman” who went to the various “fixed location” businesses and sold them their “restocking supplies”) and the “fixed location” businesses (stores) who carried a selection of “most needed” products in their store for customers to come in, select from and purchase.

Pretty much this mode of operation stayed true from the mid 1800’s to the late 1900’s. But by 1990 there was a new inroad into this model of business – and business philosophy. Or was there? And just what was that inroad?

The Inroad was “The Internet”, in existence since the 1960’s, started “going commercial” by about 1990. It is now 2005 and this commercialization is an ongoing and evolving process. Business has changed and is changing. Many fixed location store fronts also have web locations and offer home delivery for online ordering, even for local customers. But how about “Business Philosophy”? It is changing, also? Or is it?

Right now internet businesses are proliferating at an alarming rate. I cannot count and possibly no one can count the total number of internet businesses in the world today. There are probably between 100 and 1000 “new” internet businesses starting every day somewhere in the world, and this figure could be much higher. There even is a “new category” of business which has evolved, sort of to keep track of those businesses.

No, it is not the electronic store front which offers products or services to customers anywhere in the world (though this is a major evolution from a standard “fixed location” real store front on your local street), nor is it the “hosting service” which electronically locates and “displays” your electronic storefront for customers to find. They are not unlike the building owner who sublets space for offices and stores. The new type of business is the “search engine” which “locates, catalogues and categorizes” all of these various business enterprises and allows you to find what you are looking for.

It is said that there are hundreds of different search engines out there, proliferating and multiplying like lemmings….and, like lemmings, falling by the wayside for various inadequacies. Except for the best and biggest. The number one “search engine” is probably Google. However, MSN is gaining and Alexa, All-the-Web, Alta Vista, AOL, Ask Jeeves, Lycos, Matilda, Scrub the Web and a few others may be considered the “major” search engines, those which comprise, say, 95% or more of total search engine use worldwide.

There is possible a second type of “new business” brought to us by the Internet. This is the browser. In fact, the browser and the search engine work hand in hand and are completely different entities. Basically, they generally are set to work hand in hand and mutually complement one another. In fact, in my mind, the search engine is slightly more valuable but less independent.

The Number One Browser is likely to be Microsoft’s Internet Explorer. But there are several more “major” browsers, which include AOL/Netscape, Firefox and Opera, as well as many more. These four probably comprise more than 95% of the worldwide “browser use” on the internet.

You could compare them (very loosely) thusly: look at the search engine as an exquisitely detailed map, showing not only everything that is there by business and location, but everything that is inside those locations – the books and other resources within a library, the entire stock of the local store, all the services of a print shop, etc. And look at the browser as the vehicle that gets you from where you are to the resources, products and services you are looking for. It’s nice to have such a detailed map but the map is useless without the ability to go there and see and use what is there.

The search engine, slightly more valuable in a sense, is not a “stand-alone” item. It requires a browser to be truly functional. The browser, however, is a stand-alone item which benefits mightily by the information the search engine provides. Compare the search-engineless browser to a long trip in a vehicle with an occasional rare find – a resource you may or may not have been looking for.

So for you to be successful in your internet business endeavor you must not only be there – on the internet – and accessible to browsers, you must find a way to “be found” by the search engines and mapped so that the people using the browsers can find you.