Jimena has been working as a web designer for 18 years. She is one of those veterans of the network who have lived, and suffered, all their times from within. Always trying, always thinking and, many times, failing. But now, almost two decades after that beginning, he reaps the fruits of his experience with a project that, although it sounds incredible, has turned out to be a round business. This Spanish now earns more than 200,000 euros a year creating free templates ‘online’ to make presentations. The best: he only works four hours a week.
The idea is as simple as it is effective. Its website, SlidesCarnival, is a space in which you can find more than 100 free templates (with a catalog in continuous growth) for your works, whether you use Power Point or if (there is one of the keys) you opt for Google Slides, the presentation tool of the Mountain View. Simply enter and dive a few seconds into the catalog to find what you’re looking for. Something formal, creative, simple? Are you an entrepreneur in your own startup? Are you a manager in a multinational? You will find a template for everything. You select, download and ready to work.
The vast majority of templates are completely editable, that is, they can be customized to your liking. You can change text, photos, designs … But always starting from a base already built, which is complex. It is possible to add icons, maps, graphics, save them in the formats you want … All accessible in a few clicks and, importantly, free.
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The normal thing after reading this is that you squeal everything. How something as simple as templates can give so much money in exchange for relatively little work? Far from being something utopian, it is a real business like life itself. “You never know if these things are going to work, but when I started with it in 2014, Google’s office suite was in diapers and nobody made templates for them. In addition, they told me that companies like BBVA started using it as a standard program and saw a clear opportunity. Then I added the option to export those presentations to Power Point. I think I found a good niche at the right time, I knew how to position myself and gave people a quality product that they usually need, “Jimena explains in a normal and modest manner in conversation with Teknautas.
He went to work seeing this with the same philosophy that follows now: a ‘side project’ (an idea that you develop in your free time without risking anything and always as a complement to your usual work). “I threw myself into the pool after helping my brother make his presentations for his final year jobs, and until now. At first I went little by little and I was improving everything as it grew. I know I could live on SlidesCarnival alone, but I would end up disgusted with making templates, “laughs the designer who now works as a freelance.
This is how you can see SlidesCarnival today.
As an agency designer, her colleagues’ presentations always fell to her and that has been very useful for SlidesCarnival. “I know what a user is looking for when he wants a beautiful presentation, practical, easy to assemble and edit, and that is shiny to serve both personal and professional cases. I think my audience is mostly in those users who do not know these tools too much but they need them every day, even if they hate them, “he explains. You only need to go around the net to see that this Spanish has not been the only one to realize that the presentations are a niche for any user who knows how to create striking templates.
Its page is close to 100 million page views per year. The highest peak of visits is in November and falls dramatically in summer
She does not give data on the type of public that uses its tools, but it must be large and varied because it reaches almost 100 million page views per year. Something that does show and give an idea of the type of business that manages is the curve of visits it receives throughout the year. The biggest peak is in November and falls steeply in the summer months and in the holiday periods. It is clear that nobody visits your page for pleasure.
Seeing all this, it may seem like one of those ideas that arrived at the right time and were left to have a drink with luck, but no. Behind the success there is a 40-year-old internet expert who has launched more than 10 ‘side projects’ and who has already managed to get the word out with a blog that her ‘full time’ partner now manages: ‘Recipes de rechupete’. “Thanks to the blog I learned a lot about SEO, about positioning, about ways to manage a website and a community, about how to monetize these spaces … I applied all that, and I still apply it, to SlidesCarnival”.
How do you earn money?
All the templates are free, so the retribution comes from another side. Where? Advertising. “100% of what I earn from it comes from advertising with Google AdSense. I have managed to position myself very well in the search engine and thus get those benefits. This also causes a lot to change what is entered from one month to the next. You can have some periods in which you do not exceed 7,000 euros and others exceed 30,000. ”
Jimena remembers something very important in all this: the origin of the public. “There are people who do not believe how I can get these benefits, but I have a large audience that comes from the US The cost per click [what Google pays for each visit] and the cost per 1,000 [what Google pays you for every 1,000 visits] in the Anglo-Saxon countries is much greater than in Spain. “That is, if a page just like yours had only a public from our country, it would surely earn much less money than her.
The relationship between benefits and dedicated time can not be greater. Its website generates more than one million unique users per month (hence the high monetization) and she spends four hours a week. To keep everything, the work is distributed in a calculated way and strictly keeps the schedule. The hours of a week can be spent creating a new template and the rest of the month to respond to users, manage their networks and improve SEO. “It’s a very laborious job, and more if, as in my case, you do not want to get more serious about it and invest more money and time.”
Something she highlights a lot is the time it takes to care for your community. “It’s something that looks very little from the outside, but from the inside it’s a lot, they write me 100 times asking me very similar things and we have to answer so that the user can continue trusting in your tool. about presentations. ”
This expert designer knows perfectly well that she could earn a lot more money if she invested in advertising and hiring people, but she prefers to continue as before. “He is my child and I am in that moment in which I want to control everything myself. My partner has already told me to hire someone but for now I do not want to, “explains this Spaniard who, in addition, is the mother of a child of a year and a half. At the moment, their only investments are the basic ones of all web (‘hosting’ and domain), some translations, tools to improve the page and some advertising on Facebook, but among all it does not exceed 3,000 euros a year, more or less.
As for if someone has tried to buy your project, she assures that every month she writes to her that she can get four times more revenue from her business, but for the moment Jimena is comfortable like that. “I have a good time doing it and it’s super nice to see how a project totally yours grows and gives you so many joys. He is paying me the pension plan. ” To manage all this money, the designer has her own company, Piensa en Pixels SL.
In his day I learned a lot from all the bloggers who published their income for “monetization”. I do not have time to write an article, but here are mine in 2018 in thread format. – Jimena Catalina (@subidubi) February 11, 2019
In addition, it has something very clear: with these things you never know what happiness can last. “You’re totally dependent on Google, and that has a lot of bad things. Any day the company changes the algorithm or pulls out its own templates or a large company will go through this niche and everything falls out. I have always had this in mind and so I will continue. Enjoy what you can, but always with your head “.
Is it a unique and unrepeatable case?
It is very possible that after reading all this you get long teeth. 200,000 euros for 16 hours per month of work and without having to go to the office. The dream of anyone. That is why you may think about possible business and you should know that, although it is difficult to copy what has been achieved by this Spanish woman, it is not impossible. Moreover, in Spain we have several examples.
Leaving aside groups like the ‘youtubers’, which have a business model very similar to these pages (generate visits and Google, in this case through YouTube, you pay for it), we found a group of entrepreneurs who already They are known for having found these niche internet and have managed to get an incredible return.
Two of them are Alejandro Sánchez Blanes (Freepik) and Pau Ninja. Both began with personal projects almost created as ‘hobbies’ and were very successful thanks to Google. The first of them has a company in Malaga with more than 70 people who create free vector content for designers and invoice one million euros. The second has exploited as no one the ins and outs of membership and bill more than 100,000 euros recommending all kinds of products and placing websites at the top of all search engines.
Jimena is very clear with this. Ensures that it is very complicated to find something that really works (it has taken 18 years), but the cases exist and his experience tells him that it is not impossible. “I do not consider myself a unique example, what’s more, if you scratch a little it’s easy to find people who have taken advantage of these businesses 100 times better than me.”