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HomeBusinessBusiness OpportunitiesWays To Make Money From: Computers

Ways To Make Money From: Computers

Computers

ANYONE WITH A computer potentially has a range of useful business tools at their disposal. A huge amount of software is available, making it easier than ever for you to set up and run a business on your own. You and your computer can be a powerful money making team. Here are some ideas of earning cash from your computer:

  1. Computer dating agency

Why not try and bring a little romance into people’s lives by starting a computerized dating service? As with a traditional dating agency you must ask your clients questions relating to their interests and personal characteristics.

The all-important information is stored on a computer database, such as Filemaker Pro, FoxPro or Dbase. This will help you find suitable matches virtually at the touch of a button.

Advertise in suitable newspapers and magazines, charging either a joining fee or a fee per introduction. You could set up an Internet site featuring clients’ photos and a brief description of the type of person they are looking for, which will allow you to cover a huge geographical area. Computer dating is not only rewarding – it’s a good earner too.

  1. Buying and selling computer games

Computer games are the kind of product that kids (okay, adults too) use for a month and then get bored, demanding a new game. Thus there is a thriving market in buying and selling computer games. Games for home computers tend to be popular, as are games for consoles like the N64 and Sony PlayStation.

Retailing is an obvious option for new games, but setting up a market stall to sell secondhand games is a cheap and simple alternative. Because games cartridges and disks are very light this is an ideal mail order opportunity too.

By advertising in computer game magazines, on the internet, and in other popular consumer publications (especially those read by children and young adults) you could reach potential buyers and sellers all over the country – and beyond.

  1. Games and software swap/hire service

A logical progression from selling games by mail order is to set up and exchange service. You could organize it on a club basis and send out a monthly newsletter explaining what people wish to swap, and what they want in return.

As well as charging people to join you can charge a commission on any successful swap. Computer database software will help you co-ordinate swaps and allow you to store customer records. A good WP package will be useful for putting together a newsletter. The leading WP packages are Microsoft Word and WordPerfect (both are available for DOS, Windows and Mac environments), and MacWrite for Apple Mac computers.

You don’t necessarily have to operate by mail order – you could operate a library service hiring out games by the week or month. Remember to emphasize to customers that they can play more games for less if they use your service.

  1. Personalized books and cards

A ‘novel’ idea is to produce personalized books – standard stories where someone’s name and personal details have been inserted into the text. They make a brilliant gift item, especially for children.

Disney have produced a set of titles based on their recent films, where a child’s name, age, home town  and even their friends’ names are inserted in key areas within the text to personalize the story. You could do the same, perhaps using a story you’ve written yourself. Alternatively, approach other writers for the rights to personalize their stories. Books aren’t the only potential product – you could produce poems and cards too, which are ideal for birthdays, weddings, anniversaries and occasions of all types.

To produce these products you will need a word processing package – if it has graphics capabilities it will make the overall product look more professional. Ideally it should be an integrated software suite such as ClarisWorks or Microsoft Works, which also possess and integrated database. This will make inserting numerous personal details and graphics extremely simple.

  1. Fantasy computer sports

‘Fantasy football’ has become popular in the 90s, whereby people select their ‘team’ from players in England’s Premier League who each score points for their managers each week based on latest match statistics.

There is great potential for selecting another popular sport and setting up a ‘fantasy league’ along the same lines. Rugby, tennis, golf, snooker and horse racing are possible alternatives. You will need to collate the relevant statistics each week (or whenever appropriate), so you will need spreadsheet software, along with in-depth interest in your chosen sport. The top spreadsheet packages are Excel, Lotus 1-2-3 and Quattro Pro.

There are two main money making options. The easiest is to negotiate a deal with a newspaper or magazine whereby they obtain the customers and print the league statistics, allowing people to update their own scores. Your role is simply to update the statistics on their behalf, getting a regular payment for doing so.

Alternatively you could advertise to find you own league entrants, keeping everyone’s statistics on database. Using a spreadsheet you could enter new sport data each week and automatically update the league statistics. This is more expensive option and more time consuming to set up, but potentially extremely profitable. A further advantage is that when you’ve got lots of names and addresses on file you can sell them as mailing list to other companies.

  1. Computerized result prediction

A similar idea is to set up a computerized service predicting football and horse racing results. Horse racing gamblers and Treble Chance pools players are always looking for helpful statistics, as it can be used to bet more successfully. Your service could involve collecting all current racing and football statistics on a database and using it to predict results.

You could publish this in newsletter form and send it to you your customers, or even send it out as a file on a floppy disk so that customers can plug it straight into their computers. The football, racing and gambling press are good places to advertise.

  1. Game playing club

When the latest games come out people are always desperate to swap tips with others about how to play them, especially the ‘adventure’ type games. So why not set up a games playing club to take advantage of this demand?

You could send out a monthly newsletter featuring all the latest tips, moves and strategies, or perhaps even release your newsletter on floppy disk or CD of you have cash to spare (obviously you should cover games in more for this service). Your club could cover games in general, or you could have different clubs covering areas like adventure games, ‘beat-em-up’ games, arcade style games, or even one particular game if it is very popular.

  1. Buying and selling computers

Trading in new and secondhand computers is big business these days. More and more households have at least one, and hardly anyone is blind to the benefits they can bring. Computers are easy to obtain too- auctions and classified ads are two good secondhand sources – and simple to sell.

This is a business you can start on a small scale working from home, buying and selling a couple of computers a month, and expanding operations as your profits increase. The best computers to trade are IBM-compatible PCs, for which a whole range of software – from games to integrated business programs can be obtained. Business computers like apple Macs are also popular, as are games consoles such as the N64, Gameboy and Sony PlayStation. It is best to stick with these, as computer software and peripherals (such as a printer) may be much harder to obtain for less popular systems.

Your main market will be domestic buyers, although there may be a certain amount of demand from businesses and schools. Local newspapers, free sheets and classified ads are suitable places to advertise, although if you are buying and selling in bulk you should consider advertising in more specialized publications.

Get to know your market by checking out computer magazines, classified ads and library books and befriend other computer enthusiasts. Their advice can be useful, especially when it comes to making simple repairs, and they may be a source of cheap stock too.

Slightly faulty computers can be bought cheaply, fixed, and sold off at a huge profit. If you can provide customer with a guarantee (on second-hand computers as well as new ones) this will give customers peace of mind, making them much more likely to buy your wares.

  1. Computer rental

Instead of simply buying and selling computers you could earn money by renting them out, along with the necessary peripherals, games and software.

Games consolers are the easiest and perhaps most profitable items to rent out, as they are popular, easy to transport and have a wide range of associated software. PCs will also be popular with both business and domestic users.

You could operate a rental business from home, although you could expand and work from high street premises if you wished. Again, local newspapers are the best place to advertise, although you could hand out flyers in the street, take out sandwich boards or even book radio ads to publicize you service.

  1. Computer installation / problem solving service

When someone buys a computer, more often than not it will take a long time to get everything set up and working. Leads have to plugged in, on /off switches found, manuals negotiated, hard disks configured and software installed before any productive work can be done.

Computer newbies rarely realize the hassle involved in setting everything up, which can cause considerable frustration. An installation and home computer set-up service dealing with all these problems is likely to be popular as a result. You could charge a $20 fee, based on taking an hour to set up the customer’s home computer and briefly demonstrate how to use it.

Advertising independently is one marketing possibility, but it may be better to negotiate a deal with a computer retailer whereby your service is referred whenever they sell a computer. You could even persuade the retailer to hire you to install their customers’ computers, with your fee being built into their retail price.

An extra dimension is to provide a problem solving service. By setting up a payphone line, anyone with a problem can call you up, with each call earning you money. You can simply leave your details customers when you install their computer. This is a neglected part of the market, but potentially lucrative, and ideal for someone with a good computer knowledge.

  1. CV writing

In these days where a job vacancy might attract hundreds, perhaps thousands, off applications, the need for a professionally written and produced CV (curriculum vitae) has never greater. Many applicants either don’t know how to put together a CV or don’t have the right equipment to do so. A CV writing service is therefore something that will be in great demand, and it’s an easy and inexpensive service to set up.

All you will need is word processing software and a printer, plus knowledge of how to put together an effective CV. You need to obtain from each customer this standard information, which will form the various sections of the CV: personal details (name, address, telephone number, marital status, nationality, driving license), qualifications (education, training, and courses), career history and spare time interests.

The best CVs are concise and tailored towards the jobs the individual is applying for. This can mean producing various different CVs for one person, which helps to boost your revenue.

To promote your service, advertise in local and national newspapers and trade magazines. Don’t forget this is a service you can operate by post, so spread your marketing net widely. It is well worth having cards printed to leave on notice boards at places like job centres, careers centres, enterprise agencies, employment agencies, personnel departments, colleges and libraries. It’s also a good idea to produce leaflets to send to people who enquire about the service, perhaps incorporating a questionnaire so that clients can fill in their personal details – don’t forget  to ask what kind of jobs they are applying for.

When you produce a CV, charge between $10 and $40, which will more than cover the cost producing one master CV and five copies. Profitable add-ons to this service are writing covering letters, and supplying quality paper and envelopes to enhance the applicant’s presentation.

  1. Career matching service

All kinds of people need guidance on the type of job they are most suited to, especially people facing redundancy or early retirement, women returning to work, students, or just people looking for something different. You can cash in on this by providing a career counselling service.

You’ll need a computer database, preferably an integrated software package such as ClarisWorks or Microsoft Works that incorporates a word processor. You need to offer up-to-date information on all kinds of careers – your local library should contain the necessary information.

Similar jobs and careers should be grouped on the database so that people can find a career that matches their interests, skills and qualifications. Therefore you’ll need to get customers to fill in a questionnaire in order to obtain their personal details. You could include aptitude tests in this – read Kogan page’s Test Your Own Aptitude to find out how to go about it.

Marketing can be carried out in a similar way to the CV writing service. In fact, the two services complement each other very well. To expand this service you could set up a database on available grants and bursaries, and / or a database on university and college courses and vacancies.

  1. Computerized marketplace

A computerized operation publishing up-to-the minute information on local events, with a market place of items for sale, is one that offers tremendous opportunities. Several newspaper millionaires started out doing a similar thing.  Today it’s very simple to set up if you have word processing or desktop publishing software.

Firstly you need to advertise to get people to send in their details. This could include items for sale, items wanted, swaps, jumble sales, ‘what’s on’ information, jobs, courses, home and business services, property lets and personal announcements. You could specialize, perhaps in secondhand cars, electrical goods or local events, or include everything.

The information should be published in a weekly newsletter format to distribute door-to-door, or you could pay to have it inserted into local newspapers and magazines. Leave them in shops (perhaps offering the retailer a free ad) and cafes so that passersby can pick them up. Another possibility is to publish your newsletter via the Internet.

Income will be generated by charging for advertising. It only requires booking a few ads before your costs are covered, so that any more will be earning you pure profit.

  1. Bargain shopping service

The bargain shopping service operates in a similar way to the computerized marketplace, requiring the same skills and software. It involves publishing information on the latest bargains to be had in local shops and earning money through advertising.

To really sell this you need to promote the fact the newsletter contains all the best local bargains. You can even charge for it – people will pay good money when big savings are at stake.

A brilliant add-on to this operation is a coupon trading service, which is big business in the US but has yet to catch on here. You can find money-off coupons in a variety of places, like shops, super markets, products and magazines. People tend to only use a small proportion of them, partly because they lose interest and party because the wrong people get the wrong coupons. A computerized coupon trading service can solve these problems and earn some extra cash in the process.

You’ll need a database or WP software to keep track of all the coupons and their expiry dates. Charging customers a fee per coupon traded should cover administration costs and give you a little profit on top. Advertising in local and national newspapers and magazines, plus the Internet, should help to bring in the bargain hunters.

  1. Computer hacker’s club and newsletter

Anyone who is handy with a modern and good at cracking codes has the potential to be a computer hacker. So why not set up a club for all aspiring hackers?

It can be serious or as humorous as you wish. Some people will like stories of worldwide computer fraud, while others will want serious hacking tips (be careful not to actively encourage people to break the law though!).

One option is to publish a monthly newsletter for club members, although, more appropriately, you could send out e-mail bulletins or set up a web site. You could pay hackers and computer whizz kids a small amount for articles and tips, or go into partnership with them.

By advertising in computer magazine and on the Internet you can get club members and charge them and annual membership fee. It won’t require too many members at, say, $30 per year to put you in profit.

  1. Public domain program supply service

All kinds of useful programs, computer games and software packages exist as public domain items. These items either carry no copyright or exist as shareware, and can be bought and / or copied for little or no cost.

Although public domain programs cost little or nothing to obtain, actually finding them can be tricky. Sourcing and supplying there products will therefore be an extremely useful, and potentially profitable, service.

To locate public domain programs, try writing to small software companies for them, ask around, or advertise for people to send them to you in return for a small fee. The Internet is another good source of programmes, and it’s often possible to download them for free.

You could send customers a selection of programs in exchange for a flat fee, or charge them a finder’s fee for locating a particular program. Through advertising in computing magazines you can generate substantial custom and make a healthy living from this service.

  1. Customized form production

Businesses require standard forms and stationery of various kinds, such as headed notepaper, invoices, compliment slips, order forms and delivery notes

Many go without because they don’t have the necessary time or expertise, or because going to a printer requires a large and expensive print run.

These forms can be easily and cheaply produced using a good quality word processing packages such as Microsoft Word or Word Perfect, or a desktop publishing program such as Aldus Pagemaker or Quark Express. These are leading programs, although there are lots of others you can use.

Produce a standard version of each type of form. You can then modify them according to each client’s requirements, printing them out using a laser printer.

Begin by studying examples of these forms and produce your own standard ones. You could incorporate companies’ existing logos with the document, perhaps placing them within the document using a scanner, or you could create simple company logos for your client if required.

Market your service to local companies, perhaps by advertising in the local press and business publications. Sending out promotional leaflets is a good idea, as is marketing via the Internet.

When you have more experience you could produce a wider variety of print, such as posters (often used to advertise events like jumble sales, markets, theatre performances and coffee mornings), party invitations, menus and leaflets. Setting up a print shop will attract the general public as well as business clients. A useful hints is to purchase patterned or textured paper specially designed to go through a laser printer – this will make your forms look more attractive and professional.

You could also produce certificates, which are used all the time at school and work, such as for winning a sporting event, reaching a sales target or completing a course. These are easy to produce using WP or DTP software, and you can charge between $1 and $5 per A4-sized certificate. If you frame it to you can charge more.

  1. Letter writing service

Letter writing services have taken off massively in the USA and the same could happen here. Different types of letter might be required for different occasions / receivers, but each style of letter tends to use a standard format. Sales letters, complaint letters, payment demands, job and grant applications, even thank you letters – a standard version of each one could be saved on computer and modified according to each client.

Start by perfecting each standard letter –several books are available that outline standard letters for a variety of situations – and save them on computer. Promote yourself to local businesses by advertising in suitable publications, or contact them directly by letter, leaflet or telephone. At the same time contact community groups to generate non-business work.

  1. Business card printing

If you have a computer with a printer and WP or DTP software, printing out business cards is a simple process. Printers and instant print shops can take hours or even days to print shops can take hours or even days to print them, but it is a service you can perform in just a few minutes.

Make sure that your software has a range of print sizes and typefaces so that you can make each card look a little different. Again, it is worth using specially colored and textured customized laser printer stationery to provide the personal touch.

The business market is an obvious one, but this is another service you may want to offer to the generate public at markets, boot sales and other public events. Fake business cards make and excellent gift – you could produce fun ones like ‘Dad’s taxi service’, ‘Mum’s Cordon Bleu Cooking’, or ‘Best Grandma in the world’.

  1. Accounts and spreadsheet services

All businesses need to produce some form of accounts. For small traders it will only be necessary to record a few details by hand in an accounts book for tax purposes. But for most businesses it will be far more efficient to produce computerized accounts, using a specialized accounts package such as Sage, or a spreadsheet program such as Quattro, Excel or Lotus 1-2-3.

Computerized accounts are much quicker and more efficient. Important bills such as wages, National Insurance and VAT can be calculated virtually at the touch of a button, removing mathematical headaches at the end of the month, and less filling cabinet space is required. A further advantage is that the data can be modified to produce extremely useful management accounts, enabling managers to know each sector of their business is doing.

Using these accounts package is easy for someone who is numerate and has basic computer knowledge. So, setting up a service producing computerized account on behalf of other businesses is a lucrative and simple-to-start opportunity, especially if you already have bookkeeping experience.

Aim your service at small to medium-sized business, preferably ones that don’t use computers. It is worth advertising in local newspapers, although posting leaflets (or handling them in person) to targeted companies may be a more efficient marketing method. You only need to take on the bookkeeping for a handful of businesses and you have a full-time job on your hands.

  1. Computerized expense analysis

If you’re skilled in the financial area you could provide and expense analysis service, helping clients to track and analyze their monthly expenditure and giving them ‘what to do’ recommendations. It is an essential business service, helping to control cash flow headaches and maximize profits.

Finance software such as Quicken is very helpful and particularly useful for personal finances, but any spreadsheet or financial software will do. WP or graphics software is also useful to produce reports.

  1. Database handling

Computer databases are a sophisticated way of storing, filling and handling information. Businesses have to file information, such as customers’ names and addresses, plus details of clients, suppliers or competitors.

Of course, this can be done using a simple filling card system, but the advantage with using a computer database is that huge amounts of records can be stored, found and updated at the touch of a button. So instantly a manager might be able to see how many clients he has got, where they live and what they have purchased in the past. Databases are an important business tool, but a huge amount of businesses, perhaps through ignorance or the time or cost involved in setting them up, do not use them.

Offering a database handling service might therefore be a useful money maker. Software such as FIlemaker Pro, FoxPro or Dbase is cheap to purchase and simple to use. You could set up databases to handle companies’ records, inputting details and producing file reports when required, working either on an in-house basis or using your own computer to store companies’ records.

Again, newspaper advertising may be beneficial, but targeting and leafleting selected firms will be a more efficient form of marketing.

  1. Handling business mailings

There are various spin-off services you can offer. Database software (as well as some WP and integrated office programs) has a mail merge facility, which is extremely useful for various reasons. A standard letter can be written and, using the database records, details like customer names and addresses can be automatically inserted into key areas within the letter.

Another useful facility is printing address labels thousands of letters can be automatically addressed according to selected files on the database, saving the time and expense of typing or writing them out by hand. Bank statements and all sorts of promotional letters are produced in this way.

Many companies will wish to promote themselves using direct mail but won’t have the computer facilities or the time to do it. Offering a business mailing production and handling service will therefore be a useful service for you to offer other companies. All you need is database software with mail merge facilities and a printer that can handle printing large amounts of letters and envelopes / address labels.

The best way to promote yourself is to target small to medium sized companies that you think may want to send out large promotional that you think may want to send out large promotional mailings. Send them all a promotional letter to explain your service and telephone them in person to see if they are interested. You can generate valuable customers this way, and they will be able to see the benefits of your service at the same time.

  1. Mailing list supplies

This is another computer database spin-off. Companies very often keep their customer records on database, giving information on where they live and what they have ordered in the past. It is possible to profit from this information by selling customer names and addresses to other companies.

Firms like to purchase mailing lists because they target customers who have demonstrated a willingness to buy a related product / service. They are an effective marketing tool and are bought and sold for big money. If you already possess a similar list of customers you could make money by selling it as a mailing list to another company. You could also buy mailing lists from all kinds of other sources and sell them on.

You could also put together your own mailing lists. For example, you could go through the local Yellow Pages and put all the companies and their addresses onto a database (any other information, such as company size, products, and contact names might be useful too). Then, for example, if a company selling taps wanted to send a promotional mailing to all the local plumbers and DIY retailers, they could come to you and purchase a mailing list, or simply get you to handle the mailing.

Setting up this business is fairly simple and very lucrative. You could sell mailing lists by advertising in suitable publications but, again, direct mail may be the most effective way to promote this service. Make sure each mailing list is current, and update them regularly.

  1. Address label printing

A further database related business is printing address labels. It is extraordinarily time consuming to type out hundreds of address labels of write them out by hand. However, a computer with a printer set up to print out address labels could perform this task in just a few minutes. So why not set up a business charging people for this service?

The necessary computer equipment is not expensive, and address labels suitable for computer printers can be purchased cheaply from office equipment suppliers. Local businesses will form your main target market, so advertise in the local press and business publications.

Alternatively you could promote your service to the general public, printing off labels featuring their own address that they can stick to letters, Christmas cards and so on. A small address label printing stall could be profitable at flea markets and boot sales.

  1. Computer business bureau

Some or all the services described previously could be provided in the form of a computer business bureau. This is a ‘one-stop-shop’ for customers wanting things like accounts, spreadsheet, database, and letter writing and mailing services, business stationery, form design, and even fax / e-mail sending and web browsing facilities.

One possibility is to set up a high street shop with computer terminals and associated software and computer peripherals. This is an expensive option, but you will benefit from the high visibility and accessibility of high street side.

Alternatively you could set up the same kind of service at home using a single PC if you wished. The profits would be less, but as long as you are flexible and offer a range of services businesses and other clients will come to rely on you and you can make money as a result.

  1. Internet access provision

It is the current craze to get hooked up to the World Wide Web, surf the Internet and send e-mail messages, Of  course, there are all kinds of advantages to be had from using the Net, not least the marketing potential if offers.

Many companies and individuals would like to get involved in the Internet, but haven’t the cast to invest in the equipment, or don’t know how to set it up. One useful service you can provide, therefore, is to offer access to the Internet, allowing computer time in return for a small fee.

Using a small shop, an office, or even the front room of your house, you could set up one or more computers linked up to the Internet and charge clients by the hours to use them. You should be on hand to offer advice and information. Apart from the initial set-up expenditure, day-to-day running costs will be very small and you can generate a significant income. Internet cafes are beginning to spring up which work along these lines.

On the other hand, if you have more money to invest you could setup as a large-scale Internet access provider (IAP). An IAP acts as the computer link between the consumer at the end of the telephone line and the Internet itself. You’ll need to lease a line (from a Leased Line Provider) to serve a large number of users with 24-hour Internet access, and you’ll need the necessary computer hardware and technical knowledge to handle them. Although it costs around $20,000 to $30,000 to set up as a full scale IAP, you can expect and annual income of around $90,000 to $180,000 if you can sign up around 500 to 1,000 dial up customers.

To really well you need to offer good customer support and 24-hour, seven-day access. The most popular time for using the Internet is outside business hours when phone calls are less expensive. If you can provide good customer support early on you will benefit when the popularity and capabilities of the Internet continue to grow.

This business will provide a huge income for any one with the necessary technical know-how.

  1. Killing computer viruses

Businesses can lose huge amounts of money as a result of computer virus getting into their system. This means they will pay big money for people to come and get rid of them.

Don’t believe that this is necessarily a job for an expert though. Virus killing software is available specialized software outlets, and is usually easy to use, requiring you to follow a simple list of instructions. Many virus killing programs are available as shareware too, so this service – at which you can earn up to $50 an hour – should be cheap to set up.

  1. Selling business opportunities

One idea is to set up a ‘cash from your computer’ club, sending out a monthly newsletter covering computer-related opportunities, along with advice, case studies, quizzes and so on.

Another option is to develop and market programs covering different business opportunities. You could send out a floppy disk containing word processed files that explain how to set up and run each business, along with standard letters and forms. You could even include a cash flow and profit / loss forecast so that potential entrepreneurs can monitor their income and profits.

Market this service by advertising in business publications and newspapers.

  1. Computer teaching and game playing weekends

Organizing weekend breaks, where people can learn how to use a personal computer or play all the latest computer games, is an excellent potential earner.

The venue is the first thing to consider – your home will do if it is large enough, or a local community centre or school will be ideal. You’ll need computer terminals and software too, and someone on hand to provide tutoring, or offer technical support.

Put plenty of efforts into publicizing the event. Taking out advertisement or inserting leaflets into local regional newspapers and magazines is one possibility. Select your publications carefully: computer teaching weekends will appeal more to people aged 30-plus, who perhaps have never properly been taught how to use computer. Game-playing weekends, on the other hand, will be more attractive to young people. Placing leaflets in the shops and handing them to passers-by is another good idea.

Charge each guest around $10-$30 per hour. If your first break event is a success then your computing breaks should become increasingly popular –and profitable!

  1. Home computer courses

If you have specialist computer knowledge it is well worth cashing in on this by providing computer courses. You could tutor people on a one-to-one basis in your (or their own) home, or set up a computer class at a local school, office or community centre.

Devise different lessons that cover subjects like basic computing and programs such as word processing, desktop publishing and computerized bookkeeping.

Advertise locally to attract students. Another marketing possibility is to contact local businesses with the idea of going in to teach staff on a one-off basis. Companies often need to train staff but can’t afford to send them on a computing course. An in-house tutoring service represents a cost-effective alternative.

  1. Computer correspondence courses

Many people are looking for a hassle-free way of learning more about computing. For people who either haven’t the time or the available transport to visit a computer class a computer correspondence course will solve their problems.

Ideally you should send out your course in monthly instalments, each covering a particular topic. For example, Month A could cover basic computer use, Month B could cover word processing, Month C could cover spreadsheets, and so on. Make your course materials as attractive as possible, perhaps by printing them using WP and / or graphics software, and include plenty of exercises for your students.

Sell your course by placing ads in newspapers and magazines, and / or on the Internet. These needn’t be specialized computing publications – advertising in local newspapers may attract computer novices. It is a good idea to produce certificates for people who complete the course. You can charge course members upwards of $100 for 12 monthly sections.

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