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10 Highly Successful Online Startups To Inspire Your Business

10 Highly Successful Online Startups To Inspire Your Business

It’s the age of Internet. Everyone is online–your parents, your uncle, your cousin from farms and even people you think you know but you’re confusing with someone else. Consumers, agents, producers are endangered species and the tedious hours of browsing through bazaars are gone. It’s certainly easier to move your pointers through the lengths of screen than to move your tired legs in the crowded market, right?

So, the trends are changing and people are tweeting. Internet is no longer ‘the next big thing’, it is “the big thing” now.  Since everything happens on the internet these days, it will be a logical and far sighted decision to put your business online.

If you want to take your business online but you do not have sufficient experience or for some reasons your online business is not taking off as you expected to, you can follow the examples of the below mentioned successful online startup companies who shine like Venus in this vague glitz of the Internet.

1. Kaltura

1

    Founded In: 2006

    Founded By: Ron Yekutiel, Shay David, Michal Tsur, and Eran Etam

    Kaltura is an open source software company established in 2006. The company allows publishers and content owners to publish, manage, monetize and analyze their video and other rich-media content. Kaltura’s Online Video Platform is based on software, enabling any site to add advanced video and rich-media capabilities.

    Kaltura was originally based on collaborative Wiki model but later decided to provide an open source video platform focusing universities, media companies and service providers.

    Having already raised more than $25 million dollars in funding, Kaltura teaches online entrepreneurs to target a handful of niches and master them with care and passion.

    2. Taboola

    2

      Founded In: 2007

      Founded By: Adam Sigdola

      Enough with shoes, shirts and flower bouquets, we are going to market web contents. With this quirky idea, Taboola has managed a revenue run rate of $250 million.

      What is amazing about Taboola is that it has only 120 employees and yet it has managed to attract high profile clients like BBC, USA Today and Boston Globe.

      Taboola is the best content marketing platform on the internet. It provides a web widget to content creators on their website which links to additional similar posts, photos and videos.

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      Recently, Taboola announced that it was serving 150 billion recommendations to 400 million unique users.

      3. Imgur

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        Founded In: 2009

        Founded By: Alan Schaaf

        Imgur, pronounced “Imager” is an online image sharing and hosting community.

        The site was initially developed by Alan Schaaf as a side project while he attended Ohio University for Computer Science. Originally, it was intended as a gift to online community Reddit but the site took off from its startup seeing the number of views go up to millions from thousands in matter of months.

        In 2012, there were 300 million images uploaded, 364 billion image views counted, and 42 petabytes of data transferred. In April 2014, Imgur received a funding of $40 million USD from investor Andreessen Horowitz.

        4. ShoeDazzle

        4

          Founded In: 2009

          Founded By: Brian S. Lee, Robert Shapiro, M.J. Eng and Kim Kardashian

          ShoeDazzle is a personalized online styling platform and store. It helps woman discover and buy shoes, accessories and apparels. ShoeDazzle has seen a meteoric rise since its launch. The company boasts 13 million members.

          Days were not always this sunny for ShoeDazzle. Back in 2011, the company completely dumped its hugely popular and successful models.

          The company never gave up despite minor bumps. The company kept faith in e-commerce and since restructuring its e-commerce software model in 2011, the company has never looked back.

          5. LCDcycle

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          5

            Founded In: 2013

            Founded By: Chris Koerner

            What is broken that cannot be fixed? Plenty of frustrated gadget users are going to come up with the answer of the broken screens. If you are thinking of giving up on your beloved phone then do consult LCDCycle.

            LCDcycle repairs smartphone screens. They prevent myriads of smartphones from being dumped into trashes. Their business is also a wholesale of smartphone parts to repair shops.

            A true pioneer of the smart phone repairs, Chirs Koerner deserted the traditional ways and took his business online.

            Innovative and “green”, LCDcycles has managed to attract high profile publications like CNET, Mashable and Gizmodo.

            The company has managed to acquire a funding of more than $60 million and new users are signing each day for their personal showroom curated to their indicated fashion preferences.

            6. Voxy

            6

              Founded In: 2010

              Founded By: Paul Gollash and Gregg Carey

              There are thousands of language learning apps on the market so why does Voxy stand out? Because Voxy helps learning English through small practical lessons that can be implemented in real lives.

              With the advanced propriety technology, Voxy could have easily expanded its services to other languages but it stuck to its purpose. The company has developed a loyal fanbase of English learners.

              The app boasts 3 million users and more than $15 million USD in funding.

              7. Javelin

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                Founded In: 2010

                Founded By: Trevor Owens and Grace Ng

                Owens and Grace were both working on their own startups hoping something would spark their business. They had a hefty load of their own startups on their heads already and what did they decide? To work on their idea of a full time company to help aspiring entrepreneurs turn their concepts into a business.

                Since the startup, they have hosted numerous workshops to help aspiring entrepreneurs achieve their dreams and make serious money on the side.

                The company has already hosted educational workshops in more than 200 cities of the world and they have an ambitious plan of extending it to 600 by next year.

                They help entrepreneurs in different stages of their business, from sending money abroad to completing all the legalities. Whether you are an aspiring entrepreneur who wants to start a new business or an already established one looking for a trial on new ideas without wasting your precious bucks, Javelin will always be there to help you.

                8. Getaround

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                  Founded In: 2010

                  Founded By: Sam Zaid, Jessica Scorpio and Elliot Kroo

                  Your uncle might lend you his lawnmower, if you are close enough with your cousin, he might lend you his car. What will a complete stranger give to you? Nothing, but that was until Getaround came into existence.

                  If you are looking for a car to rent or otherwise make some extra cash renting the car you’re not using, join the community of more than 200,000 Getaround members, your life will surely be easier.

                  The lenders who do not want renters to have the access of a key, there is also an option for renters to open the car door without a key. This is made possible by Getaround.

                  This awesome startup company which offers a simple life hack has already received $19 million USD in seed funding.

                  9. Prismatic

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                    Founded In: 2012 for web browsers and iphones, 2013 for ipads

                    Founded By: Bradford Cross and Aria Haghighi

                    People can do three main things on Prismatic: Tell the service what topics they are interested in and which people they want to follow; read and look at the suggested articles and photos; and share content back to those topics.

                    Before they became mobile app magnates, Cross was a head of research in Flightcaster and Haghighi was a mathematician who studied natural language programming and they decide to do a news aggregator app startup and guess what?-  They have 25,000 weekly users and $16.5 million in funding now.

                    The secret of the meteoric rise of Prismatic lies in the collaborative environment the company has managed to create for its employees. The engineers responsible work very closely with designers, researchers and the whole team.

                    Bradford Cross, the founder and the CEO learnt in details about the nuances of intricacies of design so that he could apply it in his startup and he sure is effective in what he’s doing. The company has however closed its consumer-facing apps since December 2015 and now solely focuses on its machine learning algorithms, which it intends to make available to hedge funds and publishers.

                    10. Bloomboard

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                      Founded In: 2010

                      Founded By: Eric Dunn and Jason Lange

                      Dunn and Lange were a bunch of teaching aficionados. Dunn dedicated a full decade of his life building adaptive learning management systems while Lange sided with education focused non-profit organization.

                      When they were introduced to each other by a mutual friend, it was like the world was set right for them. They were both searching for professional development based solution for teachers as they believed the teacher was the major driving force for the productivity of children.

                      When they decided to take on the internet, they were only equipped with their experience and a rough prototype. They were like two hikers who were on an expedition of the unexplored hills.

                      Bloomboard is a work of art by the duo. It combines technology and the skills of educating. Bloomboard offers “Click to Schedule” option which saves lengthy paper works while organizing evaluator notes. Because of the quality of its innovation, it was able to attract big giants like Gates Foundation and Birchmere ventures. Bloomboard has managed to secure $5 million in funding.

                      Featured photo credit: YouTube via i.ytimg.com

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                      Co-Founder, Siplikan Media Group

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                      Last Updated on September 18, 2019

                      11 Hard Skills That Will Land You More Career Opportunities

                      11 Hard Skills That Will Land You More Career Opportunities

                      Are you looking to move up the career ladder? Or maybe you’re tired of having a “job” and want to start looking for a more permanent career?

                      Whatever your motivation, you are going to have to learn some new and different hard skills to broaden your opportunities. After all, there’s a very famous quote that says:

                      “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

                      While the insanity part doesn’t really fit here, the overall message is a good one. If you are looking for a different result (career advancement, more money or even a career instead of a job), it’s up to you to make it happen. This is both the good news and bad news!

                      The good news is that because it’s up to you, you have complete control over it happening. The bad news is that change is hard. Humans are creatures of habit, that’s why we develop routines, and anything that disrupts that routine causes us anxiety. And we will do almost anything to get rid of that anxiety. The overweight person will calm their anxiety by eating that doughnut, the smoker will light up a cigarette to avoid anxiety.

                      What we want to do with this article is to give you the hard skills you’ll need to reduce that anxiety so you can move up that corporate ladder, make more money or have career instead of just a “job.”

                      The following hard skills are essential to learn if you want to advance your career. They may not be easy to take up, but definitely worth your effort of learning:

                      1. Cloud Computing

                      “Simply put, cloud computing is the delivery of computing services—servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, intelligence and more—over the Internet “the cloud” to offer faster innovation, flexible resources, and economies of scale. You typically pay only for cloud services you use, helping lower your operating costs, run your infrastructure more efficiently, and scale as your business needs change.” Microsoft[1]

                      There are many different jobs available in the cloud computing world today. They range from architects and developers to data scientists, security pros. Each job is its own specialty and requires a high level of specification for advancement.

                      This is definitely a hard skill that requires education. But if the tech world and computers are your thing you can make cloud computing a lucrative career.

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                      2. Data Mining and Statistical Analysis

                      Again, these are highly specialized fields. Data mining is defined as using large sets of data to look for anomalies and other patterns that can be used to predict future behavior.

                      Amazon is probably the best known company to use data mining. Have you ever noticed that when you buy something at Amazon, you’ll see a little ad at the bottom that says “customers who bought this also bought…”and it lists 2-3 other items? All of that information comes from data mining, by examining the millions of sales amazon makes they can predict that if you buy item #1 there is a high likelihood that you will buy one of the other items too. T

                      his not only increases sales for Amazon, but it also serves as a reminder for you that you may need these additional items for your project. This is very valuable information and has a wide range of uses. Although it has a bad reputation and evil sounding name, it is a very useful tool for maximizing productivity and sales.

                      3. Data Management

                      All companies today deal with a ton of data! Being able to manage that data in an efficient manor is not only highly prized, but a necessity.

                      We all have these things on our desks called computers. Unless there is a need for a paper copy, almost all of our data is computerized. Meaning that, in theory it is all at our fingertips. Being able to organize that data so that it’s easily and quickly retrievable is why computers are replacing filing cabinets!

                      However, just like the old fashion filing cabinet, data management on a computer is only good if it’s well organized. You want to make sure that you are keeping your data well organized so that it’s easy to find when needed. This is a skill that comes easily to some people (are you a person that makes lists? Good!) but with others it will be a skill that needs to be practices. Make sure that this is a discipline you master.

                      4. Scheduling

                      Being able to make and keep to a schedule is a very useful tool in both business and life. Effective scheduling means that you can prioritize projects, understand the tools needed to get the job done on time and that you are organized enough to lead people.

                      An important point here is to write things down! Whether it’s in an old fashion daily or weekly organizer or in a PDA. Have a copy of your schedule available at your fingertips at all times.

                      5. Financial Skills

                      These are especially important when looking for that promotion. The higher up the ladder you go, the more you’ll have to deal with things like accounting, budgeting, financial planning and cash flow management.

                      While you may not need to be an expert at all of these, you should have a good grasp of all of them. This is where taking a few night classes at your local community college is a good idea. You don’t need to become an expert, but brushing up on these skills will help you tremendously.

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                      6. Research Skills

                      These are important in all aspects of life, but especially in your work-life.

                      Are you looking for that first job out of school? Nothing impresses a boss or hiring manager more than someone who has researched the company. Trust me, they deal with people walking in off the street everyday looking for a job, but managers and owners need to see the value in hiring (or promoting) you.

                      So do your research and have some company specific questions ready to ask. Show that you are interested in working for that company or that position and not just “a” job or the “promotion” because you have seniority or need the money.

                      If it’s a promotion that you are after, never bad mouth the previous occupant. Instead pick out an example that he/she was good at and explain how you would like to use or expand that policy and how it would enhance the policy changes you’d like to make.

                      If it’s a new job you’re going for, then make sure to have some company specific questions ready to show that you have done your homework for the new position.

                      7. Marketing Skills

                      While marketing a companies products or services has always been a highly sought after skill. In today’s world, it can take on several different forms.

                      Some of the marketing skills that are highly sought after today include, SEO, Search Engine Optimization, SEM, Search Engine Marketing and marketing campaign management. Familiarity with Google Analytics as well as Word Press are also valuable.

                      While traditional marketing and branding were focused on advertising and selling. Almost all marketing efforts now a days are focused on the internet.

                      8. Network Security Specialist

                      Again, this is a highly skilled position that requires specialized training. But the amount of data that all companies store is significant, and if that data is leaked or stolen, it can costs them millions of dollars in both lost revenue and lawsuits.

                      So, if you have an interest in network security you will find the field both lucrative and stable.

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                      9. Communication Skills

                      At first glance, communication skills may not look like it fits into the category of “Hard Skills” that can help you succeed. But in this ever shrinking world where companies can do business from almost anywhere, communication is more and more important.

                      Are you bilingual? It really doesn’t matter what language you speak, there’s a company out there looking for someone who speaks that language.

                      10. Computer Programming

                      I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure that computers are going to be around for a while! As both the hardware and software get more advanced, the need for computer programming is only going to increase.

                      11. Graphic Design

                      As of 2018, there were 4.37 million new websites launched.[2] A good number of them will fail because they just aren’t interesting enough visually. The use of templates and replicated websites is only making the problem worse.

                      Part of the way Google ranks sites is through originality, this almost ensures that replicated sites will never get ranked through Google. So the more original your site is, the more likely people will visit and actually spend time there.

                      That is what a good graphic designer does. Takes your basic idea and turns it into a website that people actually want to visit.

                      Embrace the Anxiety That Comes with Change

                      You know it’s going to be there, you know that you’ll want to give up as you’re learning these new skills but, you’ll also know that the end result is worth the journey.

                      Here’s a little trick when you’re feeling overwhelmed:

                      Have you ever met an ex-smoker who was sorry they quit? An ex-drinker or drug user that said life was much better before they quit? These people have gone through some of the most difficult challenges humans can go through including weeks, if not, months of intense physical withdrawal symptoms. They did it because they knew that the pain and anxiety they would experience would ultimately get them to a much better life.

                      Now what was that complaint you had about attending night-school?

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                      This is the part everyone hates, everyone thinks night-school, adult education and just generally giving up family and/or spare time. While those are certainly possible ways to develop the necessary skills, they aren’t the only way.

                      You’ll want to check with your human resources department because depending on the company, a certain degree maybe required in order to even be considered for a position. In those cases, night-school, on-line or some other form of adult education maybe your best route.

                      But as long as a degree isn’t required, then your options are wide open.

                      Let’s just say that you’re a sales person interested in becoming the sales manager but, the territory you’ve been given will never produce the sales figures that would make you stand out as a good candidate for sales manager. So how about you start your own side business (don’t compete with your company), but let’s say you enjoy golf.

                      In this day and age, there are plenty of places that will teach you how to sell products on-line and even set you up with your own website. So you start a site selling golf equipment and accessories (don’t worry, you won’t even have to carry inventory or worry about shipping).

                      Now, when that sales manager spot opens up, you can explain that even though other salespeople had better numbers than you, it had nothing to do with your sales ability, it was more of a consequence of the territory your were given.

                      And to prove it, you brought in some information about a side business, you started showing that you’re on target for a sales growth rate of 30% this year. And because you had to do all of the marketing for the business, you came up with some marketing strategies that you can bring to the new job (built-in experience).

                      The Bottom Line

                      We’ve put together these 11 hard skills as a way to give yourself a “leg up” on the competition. We’ve tried to make this a mixture of both skills that require a great deal of training, and also ones that you can work on and develop by yourself.

                      We know that not everyone is cut out to be a cloud computing expert, but we also know that working on and having good scheduling skills will make you a much more desirable candidate for the position!

                      We also don’t want you to discount the idea of a “side hustle“. Especially for people new to the workforce, having a business that you have started and run successfully shows potential employers that you have initiative, scheduling skills and ambition which can put you well ahead of your competition!

                      As usual, we hope you found this article both enjoyable and informative. If you did, may we ask that you share it with your family and friends through social media. It really does help us and is greatly appreciated!

                      More Skill to Help Advance Your Career

                      Featured photo credit: Kyle Sterk via unsplash.com

                      Reference

                      [1] Microsoft Azure: Cloud Computing
                      [2] Netcraft: December 2018 Web Server Survey

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