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Quitting Web Development after 7 Years.... Journey to the Unknown

Discussion in 'My Journey Discussions' started by EliteCreator, Jun 16, 2015.

  1. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    Alright, I know the title sounds negative so I will discuss why I am quitting before I get into what I plan on doing next...

    Basically, since I was a little kid I was trying to build websites, usually for my Pokemon or Dragonball Z obsession.. when I was 12 I used freewebs.com (before webs.com, I hope some of ya'll remember it) to build sites and since then I just fell in love with creating something. When MySpace came out I learned Photoshop and CSS so I can code templates for local musicians and anyone who wanted one.. shortly after, in 2009, I started my first WP website. It made Adsense money and I even interviewed well-known musicians in my state, it was exciting for me regardless of how much money it made.

    I kept learning.. html, css, css3, html5, php, javascript, jquery, bootstrap and I am still improving and learning new skills like AngularJS and NodeJS. I quit my day job in jan of 2013 and been freelancing full-time ever since.. every day I have freelanced has been a struggle. Maybe I had a few amazing months here and there, but I knew it wouldn't last long and it didn't. I kept positive and worked my ass off to get clients and offer them the best deal.. all for what? I am broke, living in a hotel that's eating up all my cash, and I might go homeless any day now.

    Got long-term clients but it seems like no one's every in a hurry to pay you on time so I am always behind and everyone around me probably thinks I am a loser. I have learned skills that are supposed to be future-proof and guarantee a good career but instead I am a broke loser. How did this happen? I blame myself! I am somewhat negative today but this is bottled up from years of keeping positive even in the toughest situations.

    What will I do next?
    IDK! What would you do with my skills? I can't get a web design job in my area because there are none. I hate to get a regular job because I am only worth minimum wage when it comes to regular jobs. In the tech industry and web design I always felt like I had a chance to make REAL money. I know SEO real well and affiliate marketing, but never had much success with it..

    I thought about CrakR as a source of income as I saw some impressive earnings from members on here, but IDK, that industry isn't really something I can talk to people about nd I would have to lie about where I got my money.. idk.

    Advice from a successful web designer would be nice..

    ..and I am talking about someone who has been successful for a long-time, not a month or two. I've had success for a month (over $6k) and it got to my head and I thought I made it. but in reality, I didn't.

    I want to keep this open and I'll make another post tonight when I think about where I want to go from here, as I am still unsure.. please share your ideas with me people, I need some help for real!
     
  2. Automated

    Automated Regular Member

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    In theory, you should read through the journey section and get ideas of what others are doing and see how you can use your skill-set to do the same or better. The problem is, when someone is under pressure (for one reason or another) like you seem to be, people typically give up much easier and claim something isn't working for them, when they just never gave it a proper attempt.

    If I were you, I would get some sort of job (even if it pays minimum wage), just to give you a steady income and some breathing room. In your spare time, I would test different ideas and methods that you learn of until you get something that can replace your income.

    Keep your head up. Good luck.
     
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  3. asap1

    asap1 BANNED BANNED

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    Go to every small business in your area and asked them if they need a website created.

    You can also try creating themes and selling them. If one gets popular you will make a good amount of money from it.
     
  4. conrulez

    conrulez Power Member

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    Yeah I second Automated's thoughts. You need some STEADY income. Obviously you don't know how to do that yet online or you would be. Doesn't mean you have to go 100% brick and mortar BUT life sucks when you can't pay bills.

    Get a "job" and when not working there, pursue your "career" with online stuff. You can continue to try and do freelance design work for more side money, and then run SEO experiments on the side.

    That's my advice anyways. You'll likely just get more and more upset if you try to jump into it full time with the "I gotta make X dollars by tomorrow" attitude.

    Go get a job. It sucks. We know. Many of us have been there and most still are. Doesn't matter. Suck it up. Do what you gotta do to survive and spend your free time learning and testing so one day you will be thriving not surviving.

    Best of luck to you man. Keep your head up and think long term, not short. You can do it!
     
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  5. thakarpratik

    thakarpratik Power Member

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    GET a JOB-- It can be intimidating, but you have to do it man, Freelancing, and relying on websites to make money for you is becoming harder by the day.

    I would go full time on a Job, and then spare out some cash and invest that online

    IDK how well your expertise are in Angular.js, thats hot cake right now man, and if you move to CA you can make a tonne of money there
     
  6. aBoss

    aBoss Regular Member

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    I am in the same boat OP... surviving off freelancer.com/elance.com clients :) I am still positive tho
     
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  7. garcinia

    garcinia Newbie

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    if you cant get a well paying job with your skills in your area, then maybe you should move, for a while, to a city where you can. build up savings, and use it to test online ideas. or use it to build a sales process for your webdesign business. which, in my experience is the difference between successful web designers and others, not who has better design skills (although you need to show a great portfolio to close sales and win business). you need a tight sales process that will deliver ongoing leads and sales. ideally, that is inhouse. even just one great sales person (even one average to good one actually) will make a one man business successful. but, if you don't have strong outbound sales skills, you are going to struggle.
     
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  8. Jesse Custer

    Jesse Custer Regular Member

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    Have you thought about leaving the country?

    Whatever your paying for a hotel a week would probably get you a nice house to rent in South East Asia for a month. You can still do the freelancing online and significantly reduce your overheads. If anything, it will buy you some time to build up again before moving back.
     
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  9. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    Anyone have advice or experience taking on a job from a different state or city before making the move? Basically, I want to move somewhere with more opportunity and have my job lined up. I hear of people doing this, and I even had a client offer me a job before, but I turned down his offer..

    So far I have completed a bunch of freelance work today and I have moved on to applying for more jobs on elance and upwork. I am still thinking about what I want to do.. AngularJS is definitely in high demand right now so I want to keep improving on my skills, but I need to get by at the same time so I need to have a balance. I have the income to get by, obviously I am paying $500 week to stay at a hotel and that makes it nearly impossible for me to get the upfront money to move into a house. Heck, even renting a 2br apartment is expensive in the city I live in now. Its crazy.

    I will post an update with more details later tonight. Thanks for the advice guys!
     
  10. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    I guess this thread will be the transition, as I quit freelancing and either move on to running a marketing company, starting a website, or changing professions all together, as coding apps and Java seem less competitive.. not sure, I need to do some research and think about it. This is going to be a weird journey but I do have some helpful stuff I can share with others, you will see soon. :)
     
  11. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    Dude! That's so right and I cannot argue with you there! Yeah, I suck at sales. I am a hardcore introvert, always been the nerdy shy kid.. that kind of guy. Not the ideal salesman. I have tried in the past to find a partner in my city who's interested in taking over the sales so I can focus on coding and we could split profits. No one was interested. But maybe I'll try a different approach.. thanks for the advice!
     
  12. phpbuilt

    phpbuilt Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Before I got into IM, I was in another industry (online games, selling virtual currency). Things were great, I made good money, and I ended up moving to the Philippines. Afterwards (due to competition from China, as well as exploits in the games I focused on), the bottom dropped out of that market. There I was, on the other side of the world as an expat, and everything I knew how to do was swept out from under my feet.

    I knew website design and php, but not internet marketing (all my gaming scripts I made in PHP). This was some 8ish years ago.

    I lived in a house I bought and had repaired for $500, after that no rent. Internet, $25. Power, $100. Food, incredibly cheap -- I mean like my monthly expenses for everything were less than $300.

    There's something magic when your monthly expenses are only $300 per month ... after you had lived a long while of needing $3k just to make ends meet. The pressure was completely off, and sure ... I was nervous that I didn't know what I was going to do, but then again it was like playing in a sandbox when monthly expenses were so low.

    If you feel like a looser, you might be up for a complete change. Move, somewhere super cheap. It doesn't have to be abroad, live in the south where it never gets cold and your house doesn't need insulation. Move in with a roommate, trade your living expenses for grounds work at some rich person's place, just get the pressure off of you so that you can learn something more profitable.

    Start to learn IM. There's tons of money to be made in this industry. The important part is that when the money starts rolling in, don't waste it all by upping your lifestyle so that you're keeping yourself 100% broke all the time -- save up your money and figure out how to invest it so that your monthly bills are even cheaper and that you're making even more money.
     
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  13. adventgeek

    adventgeek Regular Member

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    i was also a developer but changed my profession from Web Development to IM. So far am happy with my Profession, hope it will be continue on future too.
     
  14. acidol2

    acidol2 Supreme Member

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    Second this.

    Find some business meetings, make some business cards if you can, and hand them out to everyone you meet. Let them know that, you know SEO and Web design and you can offer your skills to new and established local businesses. Work for them for free for the first month or two if need be to establish some trust, before they pay you recurring monthly fees.

    Even if the direct contacts don't generate leads, theres still potential in them referring you to their friends or other contacts.
     
  15. lagger

    lagger Power Member

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    I dont know where you live, but security usually dont do much. So if you have a laptop upu could technicall keep working while at work.

    Also, craigslist is a great place to find a place to room.
     
  16. ChrisX

    ChrisX Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    You're in good position to start a productized service, which is the next step up from freelancing. Pick one thing you're good at, put a fixed price tag on it and start promoting and selling it online.

    It could be something like "turn your WP plugin idea into working MVP for $1k" or something you do on a monthly basis as a package...
     
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  17. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    Earlier this year I started a project that I am very passionate about - an authority website. It has almost 200 posts now and I am adding about 5 a day, so the traffic is increasing month by month. I have a nice social presence and someone bought in so we're splitting revenue 50/50.

    My goal for this project is to get it into Google and Bing News. The site is monetized with Adsense and soon Amazon products.

    As for freelancing, I am still quitting. Got a $300 payment today and have at least $500 worth of work to do this week so its not so bad. What I have done is applied for web dev positions at big companies, I found quite a bit and I clicked the 'willing to relocate' option so I can take on a good job wherever they will have me. I applied for at least 5 jobs like this and then applied for more freelance work on Elance.
     
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  18. Ambitious12

    Ambitious12 Elite Member

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    I say start your web development service again and it would be your business only.
     
  19. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    I have a "company" (not legit, yet, was just testing out the market) website where I offer monthly packages for the first time. I have literally just started promoting them about a week or two ago and have been talking to a few people who are interested. Right now I am advertising "online marketing" packages though, and I wanted to offer a free trial of some sort, so maybe I will so I can lock-in my first 5 clients. I have 4 different plans now, cheapest is $50 and most expensive is $750 - everyone who has been interested so far is interested in the most expensive one - so I might raise prices and offer more, if I can get 5 subscribers at $750/mo I will be in a much better place! :)

    I think I will get a regular web design job instead of freelancing, and then focus on my website when I am not at work. Locking in those subscribers will give me some security, much better then hunting for freelance gigs constantly and hoping everyone pays me on time.
     
  20. EliteCreator

    EliteCreator Newbie

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    Applied for a few more jobs today, landed another freelance job last night.

    Going to continue that while I focus on making my authority site huge, it has surpassed 200 articles now. All unique, written or edited by me to read properly as I don't put up with trash content. I have reviews on my site, and my goal is to have 100 reviews within a month or two. Those will be monetized with Amazon.

    I'm not reporting my freelance earnings as that's not what this journey is about - but I will share what my site earns and explain how I get traffic without going into too much detail publicly. I just put adsense on the site not long ago and it wasn't getting updates, but now its getting at least 5 posts a day so impressions are up. I only get half of the earnings, but I believe half will be a good amount of money in the near future if we keep working on it.

    Adsense: $4.86
    Amazon Associates: $0

    I also have an idea for a better subscription model and I am coding a custom CMS for the project now (trust me it needs a custom one, it's a twist on what webs.com offers) - that's the most exciting thing for me now I have been going over the idea for months and I think I have it perfected now I just have to make it happen.