I‘ve calculated that if I live to somewhere near 1000 I might make £1M from my E-Commerce ’empire’. I have played with a number of ‘revenue’ streams over the years, never seriously, but mainly just to find out about how they work. This has lead to me having large numbers of tiny amounts of money strewn throughout the Internet.

Let’s do a quick audit of my current unclaimed balances:


Shutterstock $19.90**
Dreamstime $68.00
iStockPhoto $47.22
StockXpert $36.00
Fotolia £62.98
CanStockPhoto $6.35
FeaturePics $14.30




Web Ads

Google Adsense $14.36
AdBrite $42.63


CafePress $4.00
Helium $1.14

and probably others I have forgetten about.

All in all, you can see that this doesn’t amoun to all that much. My point it not to reveal my pathetic attempts at at exploiting the miracle of the Internet. It is this.

How many other people are like me and have small amounts of money hidden away, unaccessible in various sites across the net. In standard, ‘long tail’ fashion I bet it is quite a lot. There is likely to be millions of dollars locked up in the e-commerce economy that will probably ever gets accessed. A typical minimum payout on these type of sites is around $100. As you can see, it will be a long time coming before I ever see the money I have accumulated on these sites.

I wonder to what extent these funds are significant? Could be that the mysteriously keep the whole thing runnig or, more likely, they are just a quirk of mediocrity.

** – after 1 payout