Free Online Business Tools, A Whole Service Business Idea AND How To Survive The Automation Apocalypse

By Jamie McSloy / May 16, 2017
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Remember yesterday’s post?

Of course you do. I mentioned that you could set up an Instagram bot for free using what you learned from a few Google searches, amongst other things.

Today, I’m going to take that idea further and without holding your hand, I’m going to give you the following:

  1. A possible service business (or a hundred) that pays lots of money
  2. A way to get everything regarding online business cheaply
  3. The tool kit you need to do both of the above
  4. The way you’re going to survive the automation apocalypse

I’ll probably cover a bunch of other stuff as well, but that’s the general plan.

Rewind A Little… Instagram Bots?

If I wrote a popular blog, then I’d be worried about my posts this week. After all, I’m helping people automate stuff and taking ideas that are used in scammy, spammy black hat marketing and using them to build automated machines that decrease a business’s workload and increase their profit margins.

Needless to say, this can be used for evil (or stupid) stuff like spamming the hell out of Instagram or Facebook, before getting banned.

Now, you readers tend to be smarter than the average bear, so I’m going to assume that you’re not going to do those things.

(Time Out: If you’re enjoying this article, then you should probably sign up to my mailing list, where I give out ideas and business tricks that I don’t share publicly. Click here, fill out your details and get yourself on the list! You won’t leave this page.

Now Back To The Regular Programming Schedule…)

Build something real and really useful, and you’ll enjoy it more.

Anyway, yesterday I wrote about how the voices of millions of spammers cried out when a popular Instagram bot shut down, leaving their automated Instagram businesses dead in the water.

Needless to say, this wasn’t the end of the world as we know it. But people’s businesses are going to go under due to this. It’s unnecessary though; you can rebuild a bot with exactly the same functionality as the program provided… and you can do it for free (no $17 a month server charges and no big-bad-company that’ll shut down your operation because a bunch of spammers ruin it for you.)

Most people don’t know this though, and won’t put in the effort to learn how to do this.

It’s unlikely that anyone here wants to create Instagram bots, but let’s move on: My strategy for doing the above would involve one major suite of tools. Those tools are handy for just about everything.

Amazon Web Services

Amazon Web Services is a glimpse into the future of online business.

There’s one problem with online business as it stands today: It’s expensive. Some of you are thinking, “Jamie… that’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard. You keep going on about how cheap it is to start an internet business and now you want to say it’s expensive? Get real!”

You’re of course right. The end consumer never pays for anything on the internet. (Just wait until you get your first ever “potential customer” emailing to curse you out because your $5 ebook is too expensive.)

Starting an online business is easy and cheap. But the internet itself isn’t. The infrastructure behind the internet is massive, vast and expensive to operate and maintain. It’s also very fragmented and subject to various oligarchies (like telecoms companies) at the same time.

It’s the worst of both worlds.

Now, Amazon Web Services is a glimpse into the future because it’s all run by Amazon.

There are over 70 services available on Amazon web services, and these range across the whole online business spectrum; hosting, databases, online messaging, app development and AI stuff is all covered.

Now, most of that is too complicated for my tiny brain.

What isn’t too complicated for my tiny brain is that Amazon offers all of this stuff amazingly cheaply.

Some Applications And How They Can Save You Money

I’m not a computer genius. I don’t have a tech degree from MIT and I don’t have the stomach for  the hours of debugging that come with programming.

(For what it’s worth, basic programming skills are cheap and easy to obtain – becoming a professional developer is not because there’s a steep learning curve at a certain point. In my unprofessional opinion, that is.)

That said, here are some ways that I personally save money by using Amazon Web Services:

  • Email marketing with Amazon SES (Saves at least $20 a month on AWeber/Mailchimp)
  • Product Delivery with S3 (Saves at least $10 a month EJunkie/DPD/Samcart etc.)
  • Set up a VPN (Save $10 a month say… maybe more)
  • Set up various proxies for affiliate spying/geolocation/marketing reasons (Save $1 a month per proxy and there are no evil spammers on the same lines) (will be setting this up in the next month or so – so no direct experience yet but it’s possible)

I’m just a writer for the most part, but the above has already saved me hundreds of pounds a year. It’s also made my business more profitable because of the extended and custom functionality. The above isn’t even scratching the surface though; there are countless applications.

When you add to the fact a lot of online service stuff is now monthly subscription only (like social media marketing tools or email marketing software) and you can bypass those fees entirely with a little knowledge (or paying for someone to do it for you as a one-time fee) you’re talking about a massive competitive advantage.

How To Create A Service Around This

It should be obvious how you can create a service business around this.

The automation apocalypse is going to be real even if you don’t consider it here yet. The fact is, if I needed to, I could send a million emails a day from the laptop I’m typing on right now. (Using my system, I think it’d cost about $100 to do that.)

With a dropship store and Amazon’s automated fulfilment robots, companies will soon be able to mimic the production of Industrial Revolution sweatshops that hosted a thousand workers… but they won’t need to employ anybody. Just a guy with a laptop and a few bots (and the warehouse robots.)

That’s the reality you’re looking at. It’s also the reality that pretty much every business in the West is facing within the next couple of decades.

In short, if you have no ideas regarding useful services you could provide, get Googling how to set up useful systems using AWS and see if you could provide any to businesses in your area. Hint: You can.

Final Thoughts

Alright guys, this is another one of those posts that turned into a how-to on something I should probably explore myself. You know what that means, don’t you?

It means that this post will be public and available for a limited time only. After that, it’ll be visible to friends of the blog only. That reminds me… last week’s post is still available for everyone. I’ll change that now.

In the meantime; enjoy the post, leave comments and check out some of the possibilities with AWS. It’s worth it.