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Jesse Nickles

Jesse Nickles
Analyze. Organize. Optimize.

FAQ

What sort of budget do I need to work with you?

I'm an independent consultant, and I work well that way, in direct contact with small business owners (decision makers). I currently offer hourly consulting primarily via Upwork, an online freelancing platform that makes billing and payments very easy. Occasionally I get asked for a fixed-price estimate on a project, or to accept payments via PayPal or otherwise, but I try to avoid fixed-price estimates these days as nearly every contract will end up focusing on things that were outside the initial agreement ("scope creep") and therefore, hourly billing is the fairest solution for both me and my clients. Plus, I aim for long-term contracts where I'm billing a few hours per week on average, so this approach also tends to connect me with the types of local business clients that are a good match with my skills and expertise. Instead of a one-time web design project or "fix my Google Maps listing" it works a lot better for me to work with clients with a decent monthly budget over the course of several months or longer.

What are some of your biggest values?

I'm a strong advocate for free speech (and FOSS software) on the internet, because I think it leads to all kinds of other important things these days like personal freedom, small and independent businesses, and the incredible amount of cultural and intellectual content that the internet has generated and preserved. I'm also a big fan of good old-fashioned honesty, and saying things clearly and directly, even when it's difficult or unpopular. I don't have much respect for cowardice, superficiality, materialism, or people who value money or success above good ethics or adding value to the world.

Someone told me you are a charlatan or troll?

Everyone is entitled to their opinions, and I'm a big supporter of free speech online. That said, I'm completely fine with name-calling or trash-talking (many times this comes from the spammers or scammers I have exposed on Hucksters.net). However, I'm not okay with people lying about me in an effort to hurt my reputation. I'm probably a lot of things, but I do make a conscious effort to not be a hypocrite or liar, above all else! If you have heard strange or funny things about me and want to let me know, you can always send me an email anytime, or shoot me a direct message on Twitter/X.

Do you offer PI, skip tracing, or OSINT consulting?

I'm not a licensed private investigator, and I don't offer "standard" services like skip tracing, or other legally-recognized types of services. I do offer generic OSINT research consulting, although this tends to be rather niche and is usually something that people only ask me about when they are pretty well informed and somewhat knowledgeable about internet politics and internet research. In many cases, I do this type of work in my free time to assist journalists or other activists, and much of that work is documented on my side project website which is called Hucksters.net. The purpose of that site is to expose various spammers, scammers, and other bad players online.

Why don’t you use phone or video calls?

I have written about this at length, and based on hundreds of experiences with online consulting I made the decision some years ago to stop using phone/video calls as part of a consulting project. This is because I discovered a few things like: phone/video calls waste 2-3x more time you can't share links, media, or docs via the phone time zones and travel restrictions calls tend to attract the wrong type of clients Long story story, I'm great at what I do, but I'm also an introvert who is highly organized via email, Google Drive/Docs, and chat apps. Phone calls prevent a clear record of what was discussed from being saved or referred to later, and tend to waste lots of time... plus, by not accepting calls, I tend to naturally avoid the types of clients who love to "talk" but don't really have the focus to address specific progress points via email/chat.

What do you look for in long-term clients?

The longer you work in a specific industry, the more you start to know what works best -- and the more you start looking for clients who are willing to follow your lead on integrating those best practices. After many years of online consulting, I look for clients who are the "decision maker" or owner of growing or successful small business, with a preference for real, physical local businesses. Smart business owners understand the value of delegation, and allow people like me to manage projects on their behalf. I might not get every decision perfect, but by keeping a dialogue going, and continually testing things and using analytics, I can almost always help a business improve their web traffic, branding, and web presence when I'm given that wiggle room.

What type of consulting services do you offer?

I have been doing general web design and development, with a focus on WordPress customization, for a long time. However, I generally don't offer just "web design" services, as I look for long-term clients who are focused on the bigger picture of SEO, branding, organizing their data and "tech stack", and such. Usually, I work best with successful local businesses who are looking to really dominate their industry with a solid reputation and web presence. If this sounds like you, and you're open-minded about making changes and having a long-term relationship built on trust, please get in touch!

"If you can't describe what you are doing as a process, you don't know what you're doing."
— W. Edwards Deming