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How To Make Money With Software

Software is a very popular (and can be extremely popular) thing to sell over the Internet.

You could:
  1. Sell it as a straight download
  2. Offer a free trial download and sell a password/key to unlock the software ("shareware")
  3. Ship physical media (disks, CD-ROMs, etc.) to customers.
The shareware option is usually the most popular as there are many sites on the Internet when you can list you free trial software for free, and this includes many large/popular/well-known web sites (see

  • You have your own unique product. (Less competition, and great for marketing and publicity)
  • You can list shareware titles at many popular shareware sites.
  • If you sell downloads or keys to your software, then your cost of distribution is either virtually nothing or very low.
  • Customers are purchasing from you - if they like the product, you can offer them additional products/services and sell them those too, later.
  • High profit for each sale (you only need to make a relatively small number of sales to make a good profit).
  • No limit on the amount of sales that you can (potentially) make.

  • You must spend time/money creating the software in the first place either yourself, or getting somebody to do the programming for you (do not underestimate this if you have no previous experience - developing software can be time consuming and expensive). (If you are worried about this aspect, an alternative make be to consider selling E-Books instead, as these are comparatively, much easier to create).
  • Customer Service - you need to devote at least part of your time to customer service (answering questions etc.)

Step-by-step Plan
  1. Develop an idea for your software

    Spend some time researching the potential market for your software. You need to come up with a good idea - and also look at any competition that already may be in your marketplace.

    One tip is that it may be better to focus on a niche application (with little or no competition) rather than trying to take on the big companies like Microsoft etc.

    You also need to carefully look at your idea to make sure the software that you plan to sell, can actually be developed in a reasonable time frame or for a reasonable cost.

  2. Create The Software

    The next step is to create the software that you plan to sell. You will either need to program it yourself, or hire one or more programmers to write it for you.

    If you have expertise in programming, this step is probably reasonably straightforward.

    If you do not have expertise in programming and hire somebody else to do the coding. Make sure you are always on top of the progress, and you have a written contract which clearly lays out timeframes, when you pay, who owns what, etc.

  3. Set up Your Web Site

    You will need:

  4. Write Your Sales Letter

    "Copy Writing" is a combination of art and science. It is probably the single most important marketing skill you can learn, as without a good sales letter it is very hard to convince visitors to your web site to buy from you.

    There are many good copy writing guides. My suggestion would be to choose one that you like, buy it - and - most importantly - read it carefully:

    You can find copywriting resources (both online and offline) here:

  5. Get Ready To Accept Online Payments

    You must be able to accept online payments, especially payment by credit card.

    • If you wish to sell products delivered over the Internet (such as downloads), you might want to look at ClickBank. They act as a retailer, integrate into your website, and offer an affordable and flexible system.

    • If you need to charge a monthly or periodic fee (e.g. a subscription) you might want to look at Verotel.

    • If you want your own merchant account and are in the USA (this may be the best option if you know you are going to be dealing with a large volume or have already got an established business) go to Electronic Transfer, Inc..

    • More information about accepting payments online can be found here.

  6. Marketing Your Site

    Read the rest of this site.

    Review the following free information sites:

    Consider purchasing (and reading and following the ideas) in one or more of these courses:

Disclaimer: All business involves risk. Nobody can guarantee a new business will succeed or make money. Even if an idea may works for somebody else, their results may not be typical, and there is no guarantee that the same idea will work for you.

This site is NOT intended as legal, accounting, tax or professional advice. Readers are strongily advised to seek professional advice before starting a new business.

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