In the first article in this series, I described how to create web sites and CD-ROM disks of genealogy information that others will be interested in purchasing. In the second article, I described how to advertise your products online and how to create a "web store" to sell CD-ROM disks. The third article in the series described how to collect the money. This week I will describe a process of selling information that you have stored online on your web server.
Warning: This week's article will be the most "techie" of all the articles in this series. The processes described here are not complex but will require some knowledge of web servers. If you are not familiar with the terminology in this article, I would suggest that you obtain technical assistance before attempting to set up your own secure e-commerce web site.
Selling information online is very popular. Thousands of large and small companies offer information for a fee, including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Consumer Reports, the Disney Corporation, and Ancestry.com, as well as thousands of smaller web sites, such as Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter. Indeed, a single individual can create protected web content and offer it to those who are willing to pay for the information. This works well for e-magazines and e-newsletters as well as for images of old genealogy books, extracted records, or other information of genealogical interest.
In fact, it is easy to place content on a web server and make it accessible only to those who have an appropriate user name and password.
The remainder of this article is for Plus Edition subscribers only. All five installments of this article may be purchased from the archives at http://www.lulu.com/content/1015864.