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And I’m including the time it takes to watch Montel Williams yell at Bill O’rielly in that hour.  Good grief.

What has happened to daytime TV since I’ve been away.  I remember when Maury Povitch only had one chin, and it was a strong one.  (not as strong as Geraldo’s.  Man do I miss the days Geraldo was getting punched in the nose on live TV by……whoever was punching Geraldo in the nose that day)

What has that have to do with starting an Ecommerce website?  Absolutely nothing.  I’m just getting nostaligic and trying to broaden your horizons.

Here are a few things I’ve been experimenting with over the last few days as we build a shopify market in the mindfulness, helping and healing spaces.

First – I got a great idea today.

A REALLY kick ass, creative and fun idea that I’m pretty sure is going to be a huge hit.  Totally an offbeat idea that I have absolutely ZERO experience with, but it came to me as I was sitting by the pool, trying not to think about my dad bod,  and quietly pondering what happened to my life.

I’ll share more about that later, but only when I’m sure you aren’t going to steal the idea, because it is eminently steal able.  (because then I’ll find the folks who punched Geraldo in the nose and pay them 60 bucks to find your sneaky self and shame you into giving it back.  I don’t believe in violence, but i do believe in giving good guilt)

One of the problems that folks have when setting up a store?  Finding good products to sell.  And of course, if you don’t have products of your own, it’s easy enough to sell affiliate products and do quite well, but that can still be heavy lifting.  (although you can check out our MindfulMarket.com community that is running WordPress, a simple coupon style theme, and we’re going to be inviting local professionals to submit their products, offers, deals, coupons, etc – and in the meantime, we ARE in fact using strict affiliate offers to promote, and have made a few small sales over the last month on just organic traffic)

Okay – but here is a killer cool idea.

Launch your store with Shopify.

Then, download the OBERLO app which will give you access to tens of thousands (or some large number) of drop ship products  you can instantly populate your store with, and test conversions as you experiment with your audience, and what your traffic wants.

The good news?

Oberlo allows you to access and then import tons of products into your Shopify store with a single click ( their chrome bookmarklet tool is awesome) – and you can make edits to prices, descriptions, options, etc (or not – leave them all as is as well – although you’ll suffer from an SEO standpoint, but who cares)

The problem with Oberlo, as far as I can see it thus far, is that the product database is pulling from Aliexpress – which is a China based wholesaler of just about everything under the sun, other than better than American day time TV Shows.  (which I would pay more for)

Aliexpress seems to be a missed blessing for drop shippers – many love it and have launched succesful stores in mere minutes on it’s back – while the little bit of end consumer reviews I’ve read, and watched on youtube, have been decidedly mixed, if not skewed negative.  (e.g. – many people say that the products they are getting from Aliexpress are cheaper than advertised, and are knock off-y-er than they appear on the catalog, or stores selling them online.  (which I think, some significant percentage are probably Shopify store owners doing the above)

So I do have some pause about that – as you don’t want to sell shitty products to your customers, and I do think, by dint of that fact, some extra vetting on WHAT you sell is required.  (there IS a lot of splaining on how not to sell shitty products using Aliexpress – and how to find stuff that is high(er?) quality, from reputable vendors with good, fast shipping and return  policies.

I WOULD recommend checking out Oberlo in the Shopify app store – as they have very good reviews (mostly perfect) and I’ve already populated our test store with about 200 products in about 20 minutes.

If you want to emulate the more “marketplace” style site that I always talk about – creating a community of creatives in a specific niche, market, industry or vertical, while you are checking out the App store, look for the BOLD marketplace app – (okay you don’t have to look for it – I just posted the link 🙂 also excellent reviews, and will turn your Shopify store into a full featured community in about 20 minutes.  (your job becomes to invite folks to sell their services in yoru community – and to promote the site, while taking a cut/commission/fee off of all sales and services – AND establishing yourself as an expert, authority and thought leader in your niche as well)

This is awesome if you want to sell high end marketing services as well – in the online agency “genre” if that’s your goal.  (and it’s a good one to have!)

(i’ve also exchanged some private emails with the BOLD marketplace developers and they’ve been really helpful and quite forthcoming about a few of my questions and concerns using their app – and Shopify alike – so I’m really comfortable recommending them)

Lots more to come.  Just keep thinking big and asking empowering questions of yourself – and your tools.  What can I leverage to launch?  What can I borrow to build?  Rather than trying to create everything from scratch, there are so many awesome ideas, cool creatives and amazing tools out there that others have built for you – use those, leverage what’s available to make something great – and get excited about what’s possible in 2016 – it’s truly a great time to be alive.  (unless you are Bill O’rielly – in which case, 1950 would have been a better time than now – but for the rest of us, the time is now 🙂

And how come I can’t spell O’rielly?  As a Jewish person, I don’t know many Orielly’s, so that’s my excuse.  I can spell Goldberg though.  Who knew?

Questions?  Ask me on Twitter – or fire off via email (ianrhollander (AT) gmail. dotcom)  Want to work together on something great?  Put that in the subject line and let me know!





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I am an author, artist and entrepreneur. My 2 passions are writing about, and teaching Marketing and Meditation. I like to think I’m a lot like Eckhart Tolle, if only he was taller, and a much better tennis player. (it turns out in person, he’s super short, has a terrible backhand and wears this weird scottish hat thingy that makes it really difficult to concentrate while serving) Plus he refuses to keep score and says ” it’s always NOW” when you ask who is up. Enough about me. We barely know each other. Stop staring. You’re making me nervous.