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Multi level marketing is where you are paid a commission on many layers of referrals. The more paying customers you have in your group, the more money you make, going down and down almost to infinity in some cases.
SBI! is not MLM. They do pay commission if you refer someone else and they sign up. There is also a smaller level of tier 2 commission, but that's as far as it goes. The subscription costs USD 299 per year and if people renew then you get a smaller commission. I forget exactly how much because I don't concentrate on that aspect of my business at the moment.
SiteSell's primary business is helping YOUR business succeed.
They give you all the research, content and traffic building tools that you need to build a successful Web site and they teach you how to build content pages that will attract focused and serious buyers of your product or service.
You can sell your own services, for example editing services, massage, car repair, insurance, wedding planning and floristry, life coaching and so forth. You can also sell your own products, games boards, books, paintings, beach towels and anything else that you can think of that's possible to be sold online. You can also sell other people's products, sales leads and advertising.
If you want to see how others have used SBI! then do a Google search for SiteSell case studies and you'll find a whole page of examples.
It all depends on your interests, skills and the angle that you choose to take with your new Web site.
It does take work and it does take time and planning. Just like MLM schemes, you can succeed in a spectacular way but you won't do it overnight because SBI! is not a method of getting rich quick. You can't just put up a site and in two months be making a fortune.
If you just put up a Web site with a few pages and let it site there then nothing will happen because no one will know it's there. On the other hand, if you write appealing and interesting content on your subject then it will attract Search Engines and human visitors. Over time you will have a huge following of people who know, like and trust you and you will be able to offer them your paid services and products.
I have six SBI! sites enjoying varying degrees of success.
One works extremely well and I get an excellent income from it, but it's over 7 years old and has been built up slowly over that period of time. It's also on a "hot" subject which helps a lot. Another one is 5 years old and needs work to make it profitable. The other four sites are all much newer and still being worked on. Although a couple of these newer sites make a small profit, one doesn't even break even at the moment because it needs more work done to it and a lot more content added.
So, to return to your question. SBI! is not an MLM operation, but rather an effective way to learn how to build a successful, online business. The action guide that they give you has been likened to a business degree, but not just a theoretical qualification, a real, practical course in business building.
If you're thinking about building another website, why not give it a go? They have a 30 day, full money back guarantee that allows you to try out all the tools. If you ask for a refund, they're very honorable and will give you your money back with no questions asked. You can ask for a pro-rated refund up to 365 days, so you really can try it out thoroughly, if you ask within 30 days you get a full refund, you can't lose really.
Hope this helps with your decision making,
I can vouch for SBI. They are not MML or a scam of any kind. They are do-it-yourself website builders.
I regard them as a good place for a first-time website operator with limited budget and knowledge of website building (or both) to get over the hump. In other words, if you have always yearned to get a website up and running but have never been able to find the time or money or expertise to get it started, SBI is an excellent place to start. SBI produces pretty much cookie-cutter looking websites, and is not top notch in terms of the finer points of optimization in my opinion, but it IS a good starting point, and Ken Evoy, the SBI guru, is a wealth of information (but bring your reading glasses, I find him to be VERY wordy). We got our site off the ground with SBI (after many years of wishing as discussed above), then a few years later graduated over to a more traditional web hosting solution, at which point we really took off. My point is, if it weren't for SBI, we wouldn't have the site or the results we enjoy today. One final note: SBI is lots of work and is to be regarded as a long-term developmental project--if you are looking for overnight success and results, that won't happen.
Incidentally, if anybody is interested in the web site hoster we switched to after SBI, he is a valued contributor to this forum whom I recommend highly: John Kelly at 6X6 Design, email@example.com