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1-Hour Delivery Is Coming to E-Commerce

A common advantage that keeps brick and mortar stores hopeful of the fast-paced future is the fact that customers who shop in person, don’t want to wait 2 days or longer for items to arrive – such as those ordering from Amazon.com or a similar e-commerce store. Amazon has since started to offer same-day delivery in some cities and shows no signs of slowing down on their delivery time advancements.

We’ve seen the fastest delivery times recently in the grocery sector however. In most major cities, there are several options to get your groceries in just a few hours. In addition to regular grocery stores offering quick deliver, Amazon’s grocery division, Amazon Fresh, is also available in major cities around the world. They’ve acquired Wholefoods to help them with this.

Some may think grocery delivery is different because there are less items than a typical warehouse-style store. Comparatively speaking, Amazon Fresh in Germany has 85,000 SKUs available for order which is creeping up to the 100,000 items available in a regular-sized Wal-Mart. The difference is Amazon Fresh delivers their items to your doorstep within 2-3 hours.

In the future, we could see delivery of household items be as quick as calling an Uber or ordering Uber Eats from any restaurant around town. This means an order from a catalog of 85,000 items online could be picked, packed, picked up and delivered in under half an hour. Variety stores like 7-Eleven have already started offering their catalog of confectionary on apps like Uber Eats meaning you can order a $2 Slurpee or a Kit-Cat chocolate bar and have it delivered to your house in under 15 minutes for $1.99.

Within the next decade or two, we could likely see an estimation of delivery, in minutes, shown on each product page on a retailer’s website. It would say, “Buy this now and receive it in 22 minutes.” This kind of calculation would be based on the GPS location of the next available delivery driver, the current backlog at the store, the current stock, traffic data, and the customer’s distance from the store, among other things. This is something highly achievable that any skilled software team could develop immediately.

For this to be a reality, for Amazon for example, they would need warehouses in every city and town. Right now, they don’t have warehouses in every sizable city. Their subsidiary, Amazon Fresh, is only available in major US cities and a few major cities outside of the US. However, some retailers already have a leg up on the e-commerce giant as they already have warehouse-style stores in every town big enough to be worth serving, such as Wal-Mart, Target and Canadian Tire. All that’s left is to develop the technology and systems to offer the doorstep delivery service that Amazon continues to capitalize on.

Retail stores who plan to offer delivery in under half an hour would be wise to work with pre-existing driver networks like Uber who already have over 5 million drivers working for them and an integration with such could shave years off deployment.

Retailers don’t have to partner with a driver network either. They could start their own local delivery service with a driver delivering to the local geo that the store serves. In an urban area, the area served may only be 5 kilometers due to higher traffic, slower speed limits and more stores, where in a more rural setting, 10 or 20 kilometers might be the limit.

Some big box stores have folded while others continue to thrive. The exact difference between those that succeed and those that don’t is unclear to my naive mind. What is clear is that big box stores offer more product for a better price and should be able to continue to succeed by beating out smaller retail stores who don’t offer those advantages – and with proper adoption to modern technology have an opportunity to continue to thrive for decades to come.

I Published With Morgan James and This Is My Experience

I’ve been working with Morgan James for about 3 years now. I think my I’m in a position to share my experience as my book has done better than most Morgan James authors, as I’ve earned my way into over 600 libraries worldwide, some of which are very prestigious. I got those placements through various marketing techniques, which I’ve learned over the years. Morgan James does offer advice, but what I’ve done to market my book is kind of above and beyond what they assist with. However, I’m going to walk you through what they do assist with and a few other things – I guess you could call this my review of Morgan James.

Morgan James Publishing helps with:

  • Cover design. This means a few iterations of a design. This kind of stuff can be outsourced for $100 on Fiverr if you wanted to.
  • Interior design. They do some formatting, again Fiverr would be under $100.
  • Distribution. IngramSpark offers basically what they do for $49. Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing offers a similar distribution service as long as you agree to a lower royalty. I think it’s like 35% royalties instead of 70%, but don’t quote me.
  • Education. If you consider yourself a beginner, you could use their resources to learn. Like any other paid education (like a $100,000 college degree), you can find the same info for free online.

What they do not help with:

  • They do not put your book in the book stores.
  • They do not put your book in libraries.
  • They do not pitch your book to anyone.

Issues I’ve had:

  • Lack of accurate sales reporting. They have a panel for authors to track sales but at one point in my journey, there were more libraries claiming to have paperback copies of my book stocked, than what Morgan James reported as sales. This is obviously alarming and sketchy to say the least. They claimed their sales data is more accurate than what WorldCat displays. I’m luckily I’m not too worried about a series of $1 royalties being miscounted or I’d investigate this deeper.
  • Printing defects. I received a 1-star review on my book for a print defect. Through a series of emails with Morgan James Publishing, the publisher basically just sided with the printer and didn’t make any movement towards resolving this or pursuing compensation from the printer. 1-star reviews will kill you online – and getting one for a mistake you didn’t even cause is a nasty feeling.
  • Charging for manuscript updates. When I wrote my book, I was 21. I had a high-maintenance girlfriend, was making a lot of money, struggling school. I was busy and my mind was cluttered. I wouldn’t mind going back and updating the manuscript but they charge a hefty fee to do that.

Morgan James Publishing does not have a low acceptance rate. If you have anything half decent to say, you’ll be accepted. So that means they will stand behind your work a lot less, which is fine. That’s to be expected. If you were expecting something different, that’s just not the case.

Overall, I do not regret publishing with Morgan James. They handled headaches while I was busy building my company that I most recently sold, and was also still finishing school. I wanted to urgently publish a book properly and they were able to do that. Everything was done accurately.

I may use Morgan James again, and if I do, I will update this article with relevant updates. Recently I’ve used Amazon KDP for my second book. I may self publish next with Ingram, or maybe I’ll get a literary agent and go with a traditional publisher.

If you have questions, head over my contact page and shoot me an email. I’m happy to help.

Net Worth Projections Based on Life Choices and Financial Assistance

In your 20s is when the net worth of your peers starts to radically change and grow. Those that were born poor are no longer poor and those born rich may not stay rich.

There are two major factors on how your net worth grows. One is whether you take a safe and secure 9-5 job or take the risk going self-employed with hope to make more. The other major factor is whether or not you received financial support – usually from family. However, government support exists for those without family financial support, as long as your family doesn’t make too much money. If your family makes a lot of money and they are unwilling to help pay for education for example, you are SOL and fall into the category of no financial assistance. If you are able to get financial support from family, you will be further ahead than your peers – obviously. In this article, I’m going to graph the 4 combinations of the above factors.

Situation A: No Financial Assistance, Take 9-5

Assuming you were not given money from your parents to get you a head start on life, and you decide to avoid risk of starting your own business, you’ll have a slow linear growth until you enter the work force full-time and then your net worth will stay on linear growth at a higher rate for the remainder of your life.

Situation B: No Financial Assistance, Start Company

This is where I identify. I was born into wealth, but never got breaks that you’d typically expect. When compared with kids from families of similar wealth – I paid for my 3 vehicles, gas and all the insurance associated. Throw in my boat, side by side, dirt bike – you name it. I wasn’t given assistance on a house. Essentially, if I couldn’t pay for it with my own dollar, I didn’t buy it. In the short run your life won’t be glamourous. You’ll have some fun because you feel you deserve it after working double the hours of anyone else, but real money won’t start until your primary project has mature success. This could be in your 30s, or more likely your 40s or 50s.

Situation C: Take Financial Assistance, Take 9-5

If you’re in this path, you’re basically just following the path that was laid for you. It’s simple living, stress free. You will rarely have debt in your own name. Life will be very easy, but rewards will also be limited until your inheritance starts to trickle down in your 50s if it’s available.

Situation D: Take Financial Assistance, Start Company

This is obviously the most optimal position you can be in. These are people like Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates. Born to doctors and attorneys, sent to Harvard and take the risk to start a business with the resources they’re given and succeed massively. Of course success isn’t guaranteed, but with startup resources, it’s much more likely than those in situation B. Your net worth is consistently ahead of those in situation B and your company also succeeds earlier thanks to financial assistance.

Ego vs Confidence

Disclaimer: Another self-reflection rant…

I’ve had an ego for a long time and I think I am one of few from the subset of those who have such an ego as I can recognize it and acknowledge it. I think ego is easily attained by realizing how much one has accomplished given one’s obstacles. Obviously ego is also bred from other sources, but I think that’s where mine came from. No one person has experienced an identical set of obstacles on their path to success – some may have faced similar and those people become close friends often enough. As these once substantial accomplishments age, they become more normal in your mind by nature, and ego returns to control.

Best Budget Rank Trackers

There are hundreds of rank trackers to choose from – some expensive and some cheap. Some are even free. I like to have a separate rank tracker for each venture so when I sell the company, all assets stay together. It also allows my partners to view one project’s SERPs without seeing everything else I’m involved in – and it also help keep my finances between projects start.

Sometimes I want a rank tracker just to watch 2 or 3 keywords, so I’m always on the lookout for budget rank trackers that are either free or $10 or less per month.

Rankitor

Rankitor is who I am currently using. They are owned by Pro Rank Tracker which starts at $25/month for only 200 terms. Previously, they had a free plan but have since removed that. Rankitor has a $5/month plan which I’m happy with. It covers 20 keywords. Since it is a new platform though, you will come across the odd bug.

SerpRobot

SerpRobot is a favorite on the SEO forums. It is entirely free. The only problem is it’s not technically a rank tracker. Instead it’s like a rank checker, which can only check on a keyword for you. Ideally it’s nice to monitor positions so when they go up and down, you know when and can attribute it to an onsite or offsite SEO change you made.

SerpFox

SerpFox has been around for a while. They previously had a free plan but removed that and instead offer a starter plan for $10/month which covers 100 keywords. If you need between 50 and 100 keywords checked, this is the better value than Rankitor but if you need less than 20 keywords monitored, Rankitor will be the better option.

SEOlium

SEOlium is the only tracker on the list that is pay per use. I like this, especially as someone who doesn’t track many keywords. However, the pricing can be a bit complicated as you have to measure based on the frequency you want checked. For reference, 25 keywords checked daily is $3.75 per month making SEOlium the cheapest paid rank tracker on the list. The problem with free plans is they get discontinued often and free customers have no priority. Paying $3.75/mo is almost free and you know that your keywords will be checked.

Keyword

Keyword.com is the successor to Serpbook, which was founded on the black hat forum Black Hat World. It is the most expensive rank tracker on the list at $24/mo for 100 keywords.

The Non-Technical Founder Has Made It to 669 Libraries so Far

I’m extremely proud of the library coverage of my book, The Non-Technical Founder. We are now in 572 libraries across the USA.

Schools like MIT, Stanford, Yale, Brown and Columbia University have The Non-Technical Founder in their library for students to checkout.

Outside of the USA, the book can be found in the following countries: UK, Netherlands, Sweden, Germany, Austria, Italy, Greece, Paraguay, Turkey, Brazil, Cyprus, Armania, Lebanon, Nigeria, Iraq, UAE, China, South Africa, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, Colombia and Ecuador – and the list is constantly growing.

I would like to thank my publisher, and all of my followers and readers who have helped spread the word.

Click here to download the full list of libraries as of Apr 18, 2020.

The Keyword Scout Legacy

As many of you know, Keyword Scout was one of my first successful ventures years ago. Then, I was 16 years old, and even though I was new to the software business, I was able to pack in over 1000 paying customers within the first 6 months.

For those of you who read my book, you already know the rest of the story. PayPal closed my account, with no reason. This means all of my liquid cash was frozen and unaccessible. All of my customers’ subscriptions were cancelled. I had no monthly recurring revenue.

I tried to follow up, but no one at PayPal would talk to me. Every time I called or emailed, I was told I had to speak with the employee who limited my account. The problem? He didn’t have an email and he never returned voice mails.

So, I started trying to get customers to sign up again with a new payment process and some did, but many did not answer their emails. This is expected with cancellation of subscriptions – most will not resubscribe until they need it again.

The company had a slow and painful death. If you’re interested in the full story, you can find it in my book.

Users don’t read labels

I own a company called Slide. It’s functionality doesn’t matter, so I’ll save you the time and won’t explain it. 

I’m sitting here on a Friday night, watching HotJar recordings of my users, to see where I can improve.

This particular user filled out his/her information, and like many other users, is too lazy to read the labels on the buttons. So instead of clicking “Save” like they should, the user clicks the “Delete” button.

But it doesn’t stop there. I figured this would happen, so I threw in a confirmation box before people did this.

Guess what – the user clicks confirm, immediately! Boom, account is gone. They are redirected to the homepage, so not knowing what they just did (because they refuse to slow down and read) they go to login again. For the next 3 minutes, I watch the user attempt to login again, and sit there, puzzled when they receive an error.

As a web developer, it’s not just my job to write good code, but to build a good UX (user experience) by having a detailed UI. More on this in my book.

However, the changes I have to make are:

  • Make the save button blue
  • Make the delete button red
  • Make the save button the same size as the delete button or bigger
  • On the confirm dialog:
    • make the confirm button grey
    • the cancel button blue (this will encourage clicking cancel subliminally)
    • change the confirm button label to “Delete” – in hopes by chance they may finally start reading labels
  • After account deletion, have a page that explains why the account was deleted

“Josh, Help Me Make Money, I’m Poor”

Most people who make money, generally choose to keep quiet about it because it brings unnecessary complications into their lives – one being beggars. If you know me, I’m not necessarily good at keeping attention off myself – or maybe it’s the mystery and vagueness about my work that attracts so much attention.

I get hit up on Twitter and Instagram more often than I would expect by people looking for handouts. Sometimes they want free consulting, or sometimes they want money.

The world owes you nothing

Contrary to what you may think, nobody owes you anything. No one owes you health, love, respect, loyalty, friendship, happiness or money. For some reason people think they’re entitled to my help and get upset when I don’t offer it. If you can’t respect that, then I probably won’t respond.

I already helped

The reason I wrote a book is not to make money. In fact, it costed more to write it, edit it, promote it and launch it, than it generated in royalties. The book was my way of telling my 60,000 word story to as many people as possible, as I was getting tired of repeating the same story to everyone in my life. So when someone hits me up for help and they haven’t even read my book (not even a pirated version), I lose interest in helping immediately.

Okay so $8.00 is too much to spend on an ebook that I sunk thousands of hours into. You could ask your library to stock it. Every library has a form you can fill out and they’ll buy and stock a book for you – just go request it. Or, have you read my blog, or any of the content I put out across the web? I’m chatty and I’m always writing or giving out free knowledge somewhere. Google me and scroll through the first 10 pages. You’ll find lots of material to keep you busy for the evening.

People pay for my time

I charge for my time – shocker, right? You don’t work for free and neither do I. My consulting starts around $300 per hour and companies are happy to pay for it when they think I can help them with something.

As always, if you’re an enjoyable and pleasant person to be around or to talk to, I don’t mind helping with the odd question, and neither do most entrepreneurs. You can send me questions via Twitter, where I often reply.

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