Are you making a living online? Or just some pocket change? It's a tough road.

by CEH
34 replies
Hi Guys,
Just needing a little inspiration I guess. It is tough for new guys getting started with internet business. You know how it is. You buy all the books and programs that all the Gurus sale. Just to end up broke and frustrated because most of the systems are crap. I know its not just me. I belong to a local meetup group that all experience the same thing.

Yet I know there are normal people out there making a living online. I'm not talking driving a Ferrari living, I'm talking paying the mortgage and feeding the family living. I don't want to give up hope at my online business quest. I am currently working a crazy schedule, working at a normal job and online. I don't get to see my son much anymore. He is 10 and will be grown before I get a chance to know him. I'm just looking for a way to make a living online and get to enjoy my family. My current online earnings adds up to just extra spending money not a livable amount.

So who is on here making it happen? How are you earning an online living? Ebay, Amazon, Affiliate, Ebooks, Dropshipping, etc.

I'm not asking for every detail, just some success stories. If you don't want to make a public post just PM me!

Thanks, Chad
#change #living #making #online #road #tough
  • Profile picture of the author Alexa Smith
    Hi Chad,

    No, of course it's not just you - what you describe above (and/or slight variations of it) is a very common story.

    I started off in 2008, and worked 20-25 hours per week at internet marketing, and earned almost nothing for about my first 4 months. But a couple of months after that I was actually making a living from it, and from there my income grew fairly steadily over another year until I was making a really good living from it.

    Honest disclosure: I started off with some existing skills (writing: a pretty valuable skill to have, and I got the most out of it that I could) and I was also very lucky.

    It can be done, but it's not easy, and of course more people "fail" than "succeed" (however you define those terms, more or less).

    There's always some pure luck in it, too (regardless of all that stuff people say about "making your own luck", which is also partly true, I think).

    And I think people who are good at learning to judge "by whom to be guided" have a big advantage, because - unsurprisingly, for an activity at which so many are unsuccessful - there's a lot of very poor-quality advice and real misinformation "out there" ... and quite a bit "in here", too, to be frank.

    How are you earning an online living? Ebay, Amazon, Affiliate, Ebooks, Dropshipping, etc.
    I'm a full-time affiliate marketer (mostly ClickBank; also Amazon and a couple of others), and I generate my traffic from article marketing:

    Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author rmolina88
    It took me about 2 years before I was able to make a living online. I started with adsense, but moved onto List Building/Affiliate Marketing after my adsense account was banned.

    I'm now moving onto product creation since that's where the real money is.
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  • Profile picture of the author paul nicholls
    Hey Chad

    yes it is a tough road but the ones that stick it out are the ones that end up killing it

    it is hard to keep working at things even when you don't know what you're doing or if you're not even sure if what you are doing will work

    it takes a lot to keep going in these situations, I have been there and perhaps you have too but what's important is you keep working hard and when you come out the other side you will be a better person for it

    in the 5 years that i have been online i have seen and done a lot but one thing i never did was give up

    as to my income, it's quite straight forward really as i don't diverse my income into a thousand places like many

    most of my money comes from products and from my list. I also make money from my IM blog, doing the odd affiliate promotion and also I have an IM membership site which is a residual income

    I also make money offline too working with local businesses, although this is not a bulk of my income it's a nice extra and good fun helping local businesses :-)

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    • Profile picture of the author Steve King
      Hi Chad

      I started back in 2005 and never made a sale until 2009, despite my best efforts, but I never gave up and I studied a ton and watched what other successful marketers were doing.

      I followed a course (which I paid nearly $1500 for) which taught me all about creating a product and then trying to promote and sell it...sadly my target audience was almost nil and so were my sales. 3-4 months of hard work and frustration and obviously out of pocket too. sounds familiar to a lot of people I'm sure

      From there I made a point of applying my IM knowledge in to other niches, predominantly golf - about which I am passionate so I understand how my target market I found out what they wanted and then created it, which is key to providing a product or service that they want/need and are willing to pay for.

      Eventually things fell into place, some luck, some sheer determination, but mostly treating it like a business and following a plan

      I teamed up with a PGA professional Golf Coach and we created a ton of video golf coaching programs, which we sell at a variety of places and we have a membership site on the back end that does ok

      I also make money offline too working with local businesses, creating wordpress sites, selling hosting etc

      If I had to start all over today, I would concentrate on building a responsive email list and providing good quality information.

      Good luck with your own endeavors


      Promote My Video Coaching Program to Receive 50% Commisssions & an opportunity to earn up to $167 per member - click here for my affiliate program and here for my salespage

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  • Profile picture of the author RobertCorby
    WOW, Some good stuff here. I was in the same boat. I started selling coffee online back in the mid 1990's before Google. Did well enough to leave my day job, well the day job I would have had if I was not under my parents roof. (typical internet bum). As life progressed forward, and Google hit the market with its surprise in the search engine wars, sales began to drop as everything went to Google. new algorithms to learn and so forth. But the income I made from coffee was nothing great. So, for a good decade I was bouncing all over the place to find a niche that I enjoyed, and I have. In short, find something you love, find a market for it, and sell the hell out of it.

    Wish you all the best. Keep us posted on how your venture into the IM world goes.
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  • Profile picture of the author clever7
    I can't say that I’m glad with the amount I’m making online, especially because it varies from time to time, and it’s quite unstable. However, I believe I can help you have some inspiration and motivation.

    I will tell you my story. First of all, I hate marketing, besides having knowledge and experience on marketing because all my family members are marketers and I had the chance to have a store, which worked with regular customers. Marketing is a good way to make money when you know how to do it, and when you are selling what people want to buy.

    I started online in 2006 and published my first ebook in the beginning of 2007. I had the chance to finally publish my work because I was writing a complicated scientific book since 1988 and in 2007 it was complete. I was very happy because I finally could publish this work, after having simplified it very much all these years, and after rewriting it in English.

    I was a very confident newbie, but basically ignorant, besides reading a little bit about internet marketing. I found many dishonest marketers who took advantage of my ignorance. I spent a lot of money building my sites while depending on others and without knowing how the internet works. I was attacked by my competitors who caused many damages to my business, but there was no way I could prove anything.

    I hate the marketing style. I hate articles and ebooks written based on keywords and by people who have no knowledge and are just trying to make money from their manipulations. However, many smart internet marketers are easily selling their low quality products created this way – eboos written by ignorant authors who merely repeat what was already written by others - because they know how to convince the public that their products are special, how to get traffic, how to convert visitors into customers, and all the money-making process very well. They have all the necessary tools, and many JV partners.

    I had to close my store in 2010 because the financial situation in Greece was terrible – and still is, and now I’m working only online, even though I didn't plan to do so yet. Even though I’m not marketing my products because I don’t have time for that and I waste a lot of time writing my articles, I’m making money in a way I didn't expect to.

    With all the problems I had to face online and all my disadvantages because I hate the marketing style, I thought that I would never manage to make money online.

    My style is totally different. I cannot compete with the smart internet marketers. I’m doing everything my own way, and getting traffic based on word of mouth, something I didn't expect I could have, but I see that many people are referring my work.

    Bottom line: if your work is good, even if you are a slow motion internet marketer and you have to deal with many unexpected problems, you will surely survive. If you are really helping the public, the public will help you make money. You have to be persistent and always believe in your victory.

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    • Profile picture of the author m00d
      It's been so long i can't remember exactly how long it took but I'd say it was two or three years before I began to make a full living from the net. Today I don't make as much as I used to (stated in late 90's) but I still make a nice living. About 3/4 of my income is from adult affiliate programs, the other fast growing 1/4 is from products I've invented/developed, mainstream products in my niche. If you stick with it and keep building it will happen for you, might be one year might be five but it will happen.
      Cheap WordPress Hosting @ 3Host
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  • Profile picture of the author dreamtoreality
    Not quite yet, but I'm almost there, judging by the way things have really picked up in the past couple of months, anyway.

    Of course, it's all relative. Being young and having no family to support, I maybe need $35,000 - 40,000 a year to live somewhat comfortably in London. You may need $60,000+, which certainly makes things a bit more difficult.

    Just in case you were wondering, I started creating Amazon sites around 6 months ago and honestly believe that it is the best way to go. I'm aiming for $5,000+ a month by June, and believe that I will get there.

    Find something that works and then scale, scale, scale. That's what I'm doing. And remember: don't give up! You'll get there in the end.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jack Gordon

    I am not your traditional IM geek. I believe my experience could be helpful to you, and so many others in the same boat.

    You see, when you enter IM through the same door as everyone else, you shouldn't be surprised that the space you are in is too crowded. That is exactly where people lose their hope - while trying to compete against thousands of other people with similar levels of experience.

    What I did, and continue to do, is to approach it from a different angle. Instead of learning some skills and trying to make it online, I came out of a specific industry, recognized some problems that could be addressed, and built solutions that I then understood how to market to my niche - because, again, I came from that niche.

    As I have grown my client base, I have been able to put sufficient resources back into my business to make it better (application development, marketing, branding, etc). I now have a budget to hit a handful of major industry conferences each year, which nicely blends the strategies of niche marketing, IM and real world client management.

    I don't worry much about article writing, SEO, link building, etc. I don't expect my clients to discover me through Google (though as a respected marketer and service provider in my industry I rank very well). I make sure they know about me through my PR efforts, direct mail, conference appearances, speaking gigs, etc - all laser targeted to my niche market.

    And once they know about me, they are interested in what I have to offer because it directly solves a problem of theirs. So they seek me out, and I do my best to always deliver excellent service to them so I get lots of word-of-mouth referrals among their trade groups.

    My point, if it is not clear, is that nobody wants to buy something from you because you are selling it. They don't care about you until you can make their life better in some way.

    Do that, and then do a good job of marketing it to your target, and they may just beat down your doors. What have you got to offer the world that nobody else does?
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  • Profile picture of the author bigjara
    If you want a success story check out pat flynn's blog. (No, he will not sell you anything) He gives an very open look into his life as an internet marketer.

    Want an uncensored look into the life of an internet marketer? Check out my blog The Chronicle of a Dropout

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  • Profile picture of the author Deezign
    Hi Chad,

    It is definitely not easy to make a living online. However, not easy doesn't mean impossible

    I started my IM journey a year ago and left my job (to work full time online) last October.

    Based on my own (and short) experience, one of the hardest part is to stop trying all kind of money making systems and start focusing on only one of them. Then, take the time to master it, improve your skills and become an expert You will then be able to try new things and diversify your revenue streams.

    Finding someone to partner with (or even a coach/mentor) is also a great way to keep your motivation high and give the best out of you.

    Anyway, never let someone tell you can't do something!
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  • Profile picture of the author GGpaul
    I started in 2011. At first I used Tumblr with adsense, not knowing much about SEO nor the TOS. Luckily my adsense was never banned. Then I started making MFA sites where I got a couple hundred here and there through adsense. And then a Google algorithm came in and destroyed these MFA sites. And then I started using build my rank to rank my sites with SEO only to find out those private blog networks were taken down.

    I struggled a lot until maybe a couple months ago where I became an affiliate for Amazon, and just free lancing for people. The $$ is JUST now on the rising.

    What have I learned? You have to put in work of course, be persistent, and believe in yourself. Do your research, learn from your mistakes and just do it.

    RIP Dad Oct 14 1954 - Mar 14 2015.

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  • Profile picture of the author webmonopoly
    I love these kinds of posts, keeps me motivated as well. I'm currently 1 year in on my authority website, I have spent a lot of money getting it going and a lot of time, I haven't made any money yet. I really enjoy working on my site and I have no doubt that it will work out in the end, whether its another year or 2 down the road. I'm laser focused on my site and making sure not too jump around with ideas too much. Slow and steady wins the race, and sometimes an investment can take years to ripen.
    Want To Make Real Passive Income?
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  • Profile picture of the author Sushiman1111
    Making about a "half-living" online at the moment (about $1500/month), but could very easily be making a full-time income if I didn't have a "real" job that I really liked taking up some of my time. Also, I've been pretty lazy about the whole IM thing.

    I make about 2/3 of my money selling my own products, the other 1/3 comes from affiliate marketing. It's definitely doable, and within maybe six months, but you do need to be able to focus on the things that matter while ignoring those that don't.
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  • Profile picture of the author ezekielseo
    I was a senior in high school when i first started out internet marketing, i basically did none of my work because i was so busy online even though i wasn't even busting out a dollar...

    After graduating, i went to a summer job to get enough money to start funding my business.

    After the summer i decided to take a year off school so i could just focus on internet marketing and nothing else. My parents kind of subliminally messaged me saying i was a failure and i should be at school not on the computer all day. This really hurt me mentally because my own parents who gave me life are kind of pointing these things out. This is exactly what gave me the hunger for success.

    I bought no courses or anything, i built my own methods and tweaked them.

    I did all of my work through media buys (still do).

    At the end of 2012, i was able to churn out 110k and some extra change. All while most of this was profit because i'm only 19 and im still living at home! I help my parents with Internet because im basically the prime user and pay for the gas whenever i go out!

    Anyways, that was my story. i don't mind answering any questions, PM me away!
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  • Profile picture of the author jgant
    I'm very fortunate to be able to make a living online. I'm the sole earner in our family of 3 along with some hefty university and post-grad loans. So it's not pocket change, but I don't have a Bentley in the driveway either.

    I switched from a high-paying profession into my online biz when my online earnings exceeded my profession's earnings. I'm glad I made the change because I love the IM life and love my blogs.

    My model is pretty simple: Publish niche websites in 6 niches. One niche is my local affiliate marketing gig, which is profitable (earn commissions sending local businesses new clients). I love every niche I'm in so it's easy to write content and build an audience.

    I also attract readers to join my e-newsletters. I'm a bit of a newbie at this so I can't tell you it's been super lucrative, but I'm building it up and learning.

    The bulk of my revenue is from promoting local businesses and recurring commission products. The remaining is from promoting software and a couple physical products I like that pay decent commissions. That's about it. I have a few balls in the air, but that keeps it interesting. I'm not jumping around anymore. I have precise business plans for each niche and each day I simply plug away.
    How I hit $10,000+ per month very fast w/ 1 niche blog - Click Here to learn more (no opt-in).
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  • Profile picture of the author Heart Cardio
    NOt making a living off it yet but I do hope to be someday. All this hard work will pay off in the future. I have a full time job and just do this on the side for now and am making some extra money for me to have for a rainy day.
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  • Profile picture of the author loftloft
    hasn't been a smooth ride but its a satisfying one. Its funny how wsos are promising millions of dollars. Well...just a dream for many...
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  • Profile picture of the author tjaysen70
    yeah dude at the beginning it is a tough road for sure, that's because the learning curve is pretty steep. You just have to decide that you won't quit until you reach your goal. It's not rocket science, but too many folks just get overwhelmed with all the junk that's out there that they end up bailing before the magic happens.

    I would suggest starting out as an affiliate, clickbank is really good because there are a ton of products that cater to all sorts of niches. Just pick one that you want to promote and then track all your traffic and see what converts.

    You must test and then tweak all the time until you find that winning combination. Then simply scale it up.

    That is one way that you can make $100 a day easy.

    Tired of the grind? Wait. PM me to see a better way.

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  • Profile picture of the author Stuart Walker
    I'm currently 1 year in on my authority website, I have spent a lot of money getting it going and a lot of time, I haven't made any money yet.
    I would be really worried that after 1 year my site hadn't made any money. Have you tried to monetize it yet or not? Is it monetizable? If the plan is to make money rather than just do it for fun then you need to figure out how it's going to make money and get it doing so ASAP.
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  • Profile picture of the author jachu2
    It most definitely is a long struggle! I myself am still learning. The best thing to start with is promoting affiliate offers offline. This means creating a domain name, redirecting it to your affiliate URL and make some advertisements! Brochures, Flyers, and hand them out around college campuses etc. You can also post on classifieds or in news papers, press releases. Once you have a system going, outsource!
    If you need any help, feel free to add me via skype!

    Best of Luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author sirtiman
    Hi Chad. You must fast cash income first for your daily cost. If you think should jump into the next level that maybe need paid like domain, hosting, other tools will be easy if have steady cash flow from your fast cast income. You can go to Amazon, Ebay, Clickbank, etc...All much more easy if you have plans.
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  • Profile picture of the author JohnyEnglish

    You can go with ebay and facebook.. Im made a living with both of them.. It's pretty easier than affiliate marketing or clickbank who need time to get cash..
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    • Profile picture of the author CEH
      Thanks everyone for all the feedback!

      I know I can do it. Just trying to find the time and getting my foot in the door. Some of you may be able to help me with something.

      I will PM you and see!

      Thanks again all and keep the stories comming, they are inspiring me and others as well.

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    • Profile picture of the author CEH
      Originally Posted by JohnyEnglish View Post


      You can go with ebay and facebook.. Im made a living with both of them.. It's pretty easier than affiliate marketing or clickbank who need time to get cash..
      Just how are you making money with ebay and facebook Johny?
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  • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
    I make a nice living running my own offline business that I market online, and selling leads to local businesses in other niches.

    But 80-90% of the work I do is online marketing. This is because I co-own the business with my brother, and he handles all the sales and outsourcing of the work. I just give him all the leads, and he takes care of mostly everything else, while I get commissioned generously in the process.

    Then I have a few other clients in different niches that I sell leads to.

    Compared to my last job, this destroys it, and its something I'm *extremely* passionate about. So my only goal is to keep getting better, and I wouldn't mind doing this the rest of my life tbpo. =]
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  • "LUCK" plays a big role to become successful at internet marketing. I am not so lucky to get started with earning money from the 4th month as @Alexa did . It took me almost 9 months to earn my first buck. Though I am not making huge money till now. Still I am in a developing process.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mr Bill
    Yes. I am making a great living from a WSO I bought right on this very forum! Now who'd have guessed that? I also do other stuff to add to my income but the thousands are coming from doing what the WSO seller told me to do. So, my advice, keep looking kids, you'll find something that works for you and just because you buy a WSO and give up on it because it doesn't fit you or your style does NOT mean you've given up or a quitter or that you can't take action. It just means that you haven't found the right way that works for you.

    Keep looking, there are gems right here and all around you. It's a very big Internet and if you really want to you can make plenty of money online. It's easy to get disheartened (I know) but it'll come. Trust me - just keep looking.
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  • Profile picture of the author Anthony J Namata
    Hi Chad,

    Absolutely true what you said here. The going is tough. But at the end of the day, we're all unique and we all have a story or an experience or an education we can share with others to better THEIR lives or help THEM achieve their goal. Now in that, I believe, there is money to be made if you preserver.

    I own an offline coaching business that I blog on and advertise in print for. I get clients locally via my newspaper/magazine ads, referrals and via my blog. Simply put, I make money doing what I enjoy doing. And I do this full-time.

    Best of luck,


    FEEL Better. LOOK Better. LIVE Better. Improve energy, virility and sexual performance naturally, without using prescription drugs. AMAZING SECRET REVEALED on my blog, at:

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    • Profile picture of the author livo
      Its a hard road my friend if you are working full time,this business requires time at first and lots of it.Also a lot of dedication is required.

      But once you start and get established things do start to get easier.

      I am not making a full time living yet,but iam getting there!

      Slowly but surely
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  • Profile picture of the author lucidbs
    It was tough to filter all those 'systems' and it took me 2 years trial and error to find my passion. Or say which system to worth my time or suit my style to do in a full time way. You need to know what your purpose, drive, and how much money and time you can input to a business and of course you need to treat it like a real business.
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  • Profile picture of the author Mohsin Rasool
    Yes, there are so many options and plans and systems and routes and business models in the IM business that one can keep learning and learning and make no money due to inaction and inconsistency.

    I am glad to write , may it inspire you, that I am making full time living online,
    and very happy to be in this business of freedom and independence.

    Most of my business income comes from Website development and consulting
    business where we help small businesses and online businesses to help with
    technology parts of the business.

    I wish you good luck, one thing i learned is that LEARNING should not stop ACTIVITY (John Reese said it i think) So better to start DOING what you know or plan to do...

    Also have at least one project launched as soon as possible to bring CASHFLOW and
    keep you motivated i.e. why every top guy says to focus on one or two projects at at time. Sooner you launch your product,site,service... better.. you start getting feedback,
    and from there you improve and grow...

    Keep learning, and doing nothing, planning and planning, and researching keywords, and
    trying to decide b/w this or that niche, and getting a perfect website designs and best logo in the world.... and NOT RELEASING & LAUNCHING your stuff to the public is what make this business so frustrating and unrewarding... So always always keep bringing your stuff to the light, to the marketplace, let them RAVE or RANT about your stuff, and then you can learn from there and improve...

    Also James Sharemko said this i think, that keep doing what is working for you!!!
    Really I have made this mistake many times, I used to get distracted, bored with
    the stuff which was making money in hope off something new and big...and in the process i used to abondon what was making me money and working for me...BIG MISTAKE, keep doing what works for you until you find and get working which you
    want to do. You can always delegate and outsource the parts which you do not like,
    but do not make the mistake of not doing what is working and making you money.

    For the record, I was not able to buy many of that GURU stuff, yes I wanted to buy,
    but my currency and credit card will never let me afford such luxury, maybe I was
    lucky to avoid that trap of just buying the guru dream and dreaming...

    My theory is that, anyone who has courage to register to WF, and have courage
    to post a THREAD knows already enough to make money online, they just need
    to start applying the stuff they read here and there, and then see what works
    and what not.. and keep going forward from there. Do not make the mistake of
    learning enough, you will not learn enough in this fast changing IM, so better apply
    what you have already learned.

    Aside: When I say , You do this and that.. I am not directing it to OP, i just wanted to
    post for any Warrior who maybe making few of those mistakes which I made or Newbies
    make... so OP if you are already doing fine, please do not take this post directed to you

    Wishing you all the best,
    Mohsin Rasool
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