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I don’t feel ancient, but in the online world, I’m pretty old. In January, Work-At-Home Success celebrated 17 years of providing telecommuting, home business and scam information and resources! I thought it might be fun to share some interesting tidbits about the site you may not know:
1. WAHS is older than Google! Work-At-Home Success launched January 1998. Google started in September 1998. When I started, Yahoo! and Ask Jeeves were the two most used search engines. (Anyone remember Ask Jeeves?)
2. WAHS is also older than PayPal, which started in December 1998!
3. WAHS started as a hobby. I had no intentions of turning it into a business. In fact, the only reason I created the site was the box MS Publisher came in said I could build a website with the software, and that sounded fun. In January 1998, it wasn’t as easy to make money online as it is now. The Amazon Associates program was about 2 years old and only sold books. At that time, I was making money at home doing other jobs like social work, real estate, writing and sales.
4. I spent $70 on the WAHS domain the first year and $22 per month in hosting for several years. Today you can get a free year of domain with the purchase of hosting. Or you can by them separately (which is recommended), paying about $12 for a domain and $4 per month for hosting.
5. During WAHS’s first years, I posted one work-at-home job a month because that was about all I could find. Most of the jobs were technical. Today, I post 80 jobs a week in many areas including virtual support, customer service, bookkeeping, nursing, marketing and PR, teaching, writing and more.
6. My first office was in a coat closet. I shoved a computer cart into the closet and used the shelf to store books and supplies. From my closet/office, I could watch my kids play while I worked.
7. Work-At-Home Success was originally a static website, which required me to download pages needing changes and re-upload them when updated. It wasn’t until 2010 that I moved the entire site to the WordPress platform. Because of SEO, many of those old pages are still online, though I’ve worked to have them redirect to here. Interestingly, several of those old pages still get and drive traffic to WAHS.
8. My first merchant account (1999) would allow me to submit payment information online, but customers had to email or snail mail me their credit card information. Yikes, huh? To get that merchant account, I had to take a picture of my home office, which by then was out of the coat closet and in the corner of the living room. Today, I’m able to accept payment online without having a merchant account.
9. My first product was a booklet that I had printed at Kinkos(remember Kinkos?). Each time I got an order by email or snail mail, I’d head to Kinkos, print and bind the book, and ship it out. Today, most of my products are digital or are sold in print at online book retailers.
10. When I started, I was a 31 year old mom with a toddler and newborn. Today, that toddler is in college and that newborn is applying to college. Time really does fly! BTW…I’m still 31!