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antiCost — a sneak peek inside

Richie Iglar is the founder of antiCost and a frequent commenter on ProBargainHunter. When he comments he tends to hide behind weird pseudonyms. I asked Richie to come out of shadows and tell us all about himself and his website

antiCost Logo

When did you launch your website, what prompted you to do so?

One of my previous co-workers was making some extra money on the side running some affiliate marketing sites, he constantly told me that I should get involved but I never really thought that I could pull it off. I enlisted the programming experience of my cousin and we started brainstorming on some different ideas. We had all sorts of websites ranging from dating sites, cars/automobiles, home automation, blogs, pet products, as well as the “deals site”. We each added content, did some marketing, and waited…and waited some more. Eventually, all of the sites died a meaningless life except for antiCost. Since I was a “deals junkie” updating antiCost was something I actually enjoyed. The site officially launched, albeit with little fanfare, in December of 2005.

There are a lot of alternatives out there. What do you think makes antiCost special?

You mean there’s more then one deals site on the internet?! I was actually amazed to see how many sites really existed in the “deals/coupons” category on the internet. I had no idea so many existed until I really started to search around to see how I should promote the site. I was also impressed at the traffic numbers these sites were bringing in so it encouraged me to stay focused. I think antiCost is special because it offers an even mix of both deals and coupons. Many deals sites out there are focused strictly on the home-page deals, whereas I try my best to keep a lot of content in both areas. I also try my best to avoid any deals from questionable retailers and manufacturers. I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve spent on the phone trying to get the status of my rebate…

You mention “we” on the about page. Do you have helpers or is it like in “royal” we?

My cousin was helping me out a bit with the site in its early development, but he became very involved with his real estate blog which took his attention away from antiCost. I don’t hold any grudges against him for that, his blog is an excellent resource that I frequent daily. It would definitely be nice to have more help with antiCost, my limited development experience keeps me from expanding the site to where I really want it to be. If the site picks up some more, I’ll probably look to have someone help me with the day-to-day activities so I can add some more features, but I’m happy with the progress I’ve made so far.

Do you post deals for living or is it a hobby? If you have another job, what is it?

Since the site costs me more then it brings in, it must be a hobby, right?! My primary job is IT Consulting for large organizations. My current engagement is Active Directory support for a large pharmaceutical company. On the side, I do computer/network support for small businesses, install home automation and security systems, sell on eBay, and run antiCost. Add a wife and an 11-month son to the equation and the only time I have left is for sleep! I don’t think antiCost will ever be a full-time engagement for me, it’s fun to run as a hobby but my real passion is enterprise systems architecture.

I recently wrote about Amazon getting hard on deals site. Has this been affecting antiCost?

Luckily I didn’t get the same “Friday the 13th” notification that many of the other sites received. antiCost is just a small fish in the sea compared to the other deal sites out there, so I guess we weren’t targeted. My Amazon traffic has definitely dropped after Christmas time but I’m not losing sleep over it.

Do you keep in touch with other deals site owners? What do you talk about?

I guess that’s the one cardinal rule I didn’t follow before I started the site, I never bothered to contact anyone for advice or tips. Building the site is something I do through trial-and-error. I didn’t think that other deal site owners would be interested in sharing any information to a new competitor. If you read the forums on most of the major deal sites they’re very harsh to people who post links or discuss other deals sites, so I guess you can say I didn’t want to bother them with my “noob” questions.

Do you practice what you preach? Do you consider yourself frugal?

I wouldn’t say that I’m 100% frugal, although I try my best to control spending and not overpay for anything. I’ve always been financially responsible, but not to the point of being “cheap”. Time is money, you need to keep a good balance between both of them if you’re going to succeed.

Please share a fun fact related to antiCost, or anything from your online shopping experience

In January I had a “freebie” promotion in which I purchased 500 antiCost.com branded keychains to give away to the visitors. Within 2 hours they were all gone! It was the most traffic I had in one day. It then took me another 8 hours to put them in envelopes, label and stamp them. I’ll definitely do it again soon, but only after all the paper cuts heal! A lesson learned: news travels fast when the word “free” is mentioned.

If you were to give just one money saving advice to ProBargainHunter reader, what would it be?

Don’t spend more then you earn. It might seem like common-sense to most people, but I think too many people spend beyond their means and run up their debt. It’s fun to have the latest gadgets, a big house, a fun car, but if at the end of the day you’re not putting any money in your savings account, you’re going to have a hard time in the future. There was a recent article on this blog about high-interest savings accounts and CD’s (link to the article -Yan), that’s a great place to start!


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4 Responses to “antiCost — a sneak peek inside”


  1. 1 XynamaX Mar 29th, 2007 at 6:12 am

    As for my weird pseudonyms, XynamaX is the original handle I used when I was BBS’ing on my Commodore 128 back in the 80’s.. It has no meaning and is entirely a fictional name that has stuck with me for over 20 years… There has been one imposter, I ran into someone that “borrowed” my handle because he liked it.. Guess I can’t do much since i never copyrighted it!

    -X

  2. 2 Mike G. Mar 29th, 2007 at 8:19 pm

    Nice site Richie.. Great name. Are you associated with AntiRebate by any chance?

  3. 3 XynamaX Mar 29th, 2007 at 9:07 pm

    Thanks! Not associated with AntiRebate.. I didn’t realize that site existed until after I picked the name…

    -X

  4. 4 L Mar 30th, 2007 at 9:20 am

    Yeah that name is freaking fantastic. Too bad anticost isn’t paying for itself yet, but i’m sure it’ll pick up

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