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I started with $60 back in the day. That imposes a certain discipline on you, which has good and bad influences on your thinking.

Good: "I need revenue to buy the stuff I think I need to make more revenue. I guess I'll have to make something people want and sell it to them."

Possibly good: "Well, I can't afford web design, but I'll stretch this OSS template about as far as it will go until I have enough money to pay for a redesign."

Not good: "I don't have $50 to spend on icons right now so instead I'll waste several hours embarrassing myself in Paint.NET and ultimately come up with something which is ugly, converts poorly, and distracted me from tasks where I actually add value."

Speaking of which: open source. Its not just for software anymore. You have to dig through a lot of junk to get them, but there are OSS designs which are far, far better than what you'll come up with (resident designers excepted). I recommend Styleshout for that Web 2.0 look, and oswd.org (and a whole lot of needle-in-haystack searching) for finding a good template for anything else.

Also: Wordpress (free) + $4 a month hosting + writing skill (I hope you've got it) = cheapest marketing you will ever accomplish, and some of the most effective, too.




Thanks for the styleshout reference... very helpful.

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I have to say, interesting choice with Paint.NET -- Didn't like gimp?

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