Name of Business: CompareXtraIncome.com
Your Name and Age: Hailey Thornton aged 27 years
Tell us about your family:
I live with my partner of 3 years, John who was a very brave man and took myself and two young boys on despite no children of his own! My boys are exactly 12 months apart in age 5 and 6 years old now (how time flies!). We moved to Monmouth in Wales to give the kids a better life and I would not want to live anywhere else! We are now expecting our third child in November and we are all very excited about it.
What did you do before coming up with your business idea (previous career, stay at home mum etc) and how was it making the transition?
Before I met John and moved to Monmouth I had split and divorced from my husband, he was violent and I and the children had to leave suddenly. We were left with nothing and had to start from scratch. I was left in a lot of debt following my divorce. I got a part time job as a waitress in the evenings when I moved to Monmouth as we could not survive on John’s income alone. We still needed more income though as we were both in debt. I couldn’t afford to work full time as child care was too costly. I eventually found a home based business I could run in the day whilst the kids were at school. I became a Kleeneze rep. Kleeneze was great and gave us the extra income and flexibility we needed. I began talking to lots of other people in similar situations and realised the high demand for flexible extra incomes. It became apparent how hard it was for someone to find the right extra income opportunity and people were sceptical of network marketing as there are often start up costs which deterred people for fear of being conned out of their money. I spoke daily to people that desperately needed the extra income but were rejecting all the wonderful opportunities out there because they did not understand them. I became frustrated at wanting to help these people and knowing that these opportunities could do just that.
When did you launch?
In September 2008 I came up with the idea of a comparison website for work from home/extra income opportunities. I needed something simple to advertise to the public all these wonderful opportunities and with the recession in full swing more and more people were desperate for extra incomes. The problem was that like most things these days, people were searching the internet for extra income opportunities, only to be bombarded with “get rich quick” promises and useless information that left them even further confused. There needed to be one place, one website that people could go to and all the genuine opportunities would be in one place with all the facts in black and white, plain English! People were already familiar with comparison websites and trusted them so it made sense to use this simple model.
How did you get started?
I had this great simple idea, or at least I hoped it was! I have no knowledge of building websites and no funds to get one built. All I had was the knowledge of the extra income industry and an idea. Therefore I needed help and emailed a business contact about the idea. To my amazement he loved the idea and a partnership was born!
What research did you do before launching?
When I first came up with the idea I had no idea how much work would be involved to make it a reality. I spent months on the telephone and the internet researching. We went to business shows and contacted a lot of companies. I had to research every company so that I had a good database of opportunities on the website. I wanted only good reputable opportunities on the site and so every company is carefully researched before being considered for the website.
How have you funded the business?
So far my business partner has funded the business to get us off the ground. We have had to keep costs down as much as possible but I feel we have already achieved an excellent website that meets its objective without blowing the budget. I am also lucky in that my Dad is a website designer so we offered him equal partnership in the company. We saved a lot of money as Dad has done the building of the website himself.
How do you promote your business? What has worked best?
The site is still fairly new and was launched live early in 2009. I have worked hard to promote the site through forums, word of mouth, online communities and online articles. We also have a newsletter campaign. The site is being promoted gradually and the hope is that it will grow steadily. The feedback so far has been excellent and the site is being very much welcomed.
What has worked well about your business?
The simplicity of the website design and idea is its greatest achievement. We have kept it simple and impartial. The website is not threatening or trying to “sell” to our users. It is simply a resource for people to be able to make up their own minds without feeling pressured.
What has been your biggest challenge so far? How have you dealt with it?
Our biggest challenge has been to get people familiar with the concept of the website. People are weary of the home working market and are unfamiliar with what we are trying to do with the site. We need to build up trust so that people are comfortable with every opportunity on our database. I feel the sites “honesty” and user friendly appearance will overcome all fears that people may have.
How do you fit in work with the family?
I work in the daytime when the boys are at school. I try to get double the work done in the weeks leading up to school holidays. We have good kid’s holiday clubs here as well so I can get some work done during holidays too.
Your website link: www.CompareXtraincome.com
If you are a rep for a home working company and your company is not already advertised on our website we are still adding new companies all the time. If you would like to represent your business opportunity on comparextraincome.com please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your details. It is currently free to represent your opportunity on the website. Places are offered on a first come first served basis as we currently only allow one representative from each company on the site.