Creating a video series and selling it as a digital download on your blog, much like an eBook, can be another great seller. A video course, teaching viewers a specific skill or how to achieve a particular activity, may well resonate with your audience. If you are going to go down this route then your videos need to be as professional as possible so you should consider investing in some video and lighting equipment, as well as editing software.
Hi Yaro, thanks for a really helpful and practical post. I’ve been attempting to earn a living online for a while now, through selling handmade products. Turns out that with the amount of time that goes into it and how little people are prepared to pay, this has not been a profitable venture for me! I’m now trying a different approach by building a content based blog and hopefully soon will start selling information based product. My blog is still just a baby (I only started it a couple of weeks ago), so I know I’ve got a lot of work ahead of me still! I’m not naturally gifted at online entrepreneurial stuff so I have found this blog and your reports to be an invaluable resource. Thank you so much! Now I just need to roll up my sleeves and give it a go!
Now, I know what you’re thinking. Most of the software and apps you use on a regular basis are made by massive companies or established development studios. Well, yes. But many successful apps, particularly those in the Apple and Google stores, are created and marketed by individuals and small businesses. In fact, independent developers made $20 billion in the App Store in 2016 alone.
There’s an excellent chance that you have one or several musical instruments sitting in storage that haven’t been used in years. Perhaps it’s a leftover from when you were in school, or even from your days playing in a band. Whatever the reason that you have it, it’s probably worth money if you can sell it. Brand-new instruments are ridiculously expensive, so people often look to buy used equipment instead, particularly if they are novices.
If you really wanted to make the list even more exhaustive, you could also discuss the various biological money-making methods (e.g., sperm donation, egg donation, etc.) and/or go into the more technical (e.g., hosting websites on one’s own server, building computers for others, etc.). Also, you could potentially explore those well-known money-making ventures, such as trading on the stock market, which are seemingly difficult to enter into by their apparent complexity by listing various online instructional tools which assist novices looking to get involved in them (e.g., Investopedia’s online simulator to prepare for buying/selling stocks). Sometimes those methods of making money which appear to be the most difficult are, in fact, relatively simple once you understand the underlying conceptual framework – many people just don’t realize this.
Mow lawns or plow driveways. If you’re willing to mow yards or shovel or plow snow in the winter, you could easily start your own snow removal and lawn mowing business on the side. While you can usually find work by reaching out to your local community via word-of-mouth, flyers, or online message boards, the website Plowz & Mowz allows you to set up an online profile and reach more customers in your area.
You already watch plenty of videos online, so why not make a little extra money while you’re doing it? Swagbucks is a site that rewards its users with gift cards for taking surveys, watching certain videos, or conducting web searches with its search engine. You earn points by participating in Swagbucks activities and you can then redeem those points for gift cards or cash back from PayPal. Swagbucks also offers a mobile app that lets you use the service on the go.
While many people are in a rush to complete goals they set for themselves at the beginning of the year, I’m looking forward to new and innovative ways to add more money to my bottom line come next year. Lucky for us, there is never a shortage of new money-making apps and ideas coming online. And, working from home is becoming even more accepted and commonplace than it has been in years past.
Prior to that group, they had an online community for teachers looking for lesson plans. That probably sounds pretty random, but it's crazy the type of communities you can build and rally people around. If it's something that you're passionate about yourself and you want to connect with others that have that same passion, then an online community is something you should definitely consider.
This isn’t to scare you off. I simply want you to know that this guide is going to focus solely on ways to make real, sustainable extra income online. Not just a few bucks. I want to share all the mistakes I've made that got me to where I am now so that you don’t have to go through them, and can build a successful online source of income for yourself.
This has become a popular business model for online entrepreneurs over the past several years, and will probably just continue to grow in popularity. The best thing about selling online courses is that once you do the up-front work in creating the course and setting up your marketing strategy, you can get paid over and over again for work you do once.
Shopify is another great option if you are wanting to create your own eCommerce store. Shopify is arguably easier to set up than WooCommerce but will give you less control over your storefront and cost you more long term. However, if you have little to no experience of creating websites or using WordPress, or you are working to a very tight time schedule, then Shopify may be the perfect eCommerce platform for you.
Writing copy for websites is another great freelancing option for those who have a way with words. Copywriting can involve writing the text for websites, press releases, promotional offline materials including leaflets and brochures, and any other professional text for businesses. While writing blog posts is well paid it won’t make you as much money as writing copy for sales pages. However, clients can be more fussy, as they want the highest quality writing for the forefront of their website or advertising campaigns. Many freelance writers offer both copywriting and blog writing amongst their services. This can be a good way to juggle regular but lower paid clients (blogging) with the higher paid but ad-hoc project based copy work.
Start by taking other courses you’re interested in: Not only is this important competitor and opportunity analysis, but it also gives you an idea of how a course could or should look and feel. What’s the pacing like? Is it via email, video, in-person chats? Once you understand how you want your course to look, it’s time to decide what it should include. Those same courses are a great starting place. How can you make your course better or more interesting? Do you have experience others don’t?
We all know we should be investing money, but it isn’t always as easy as it sounds. This is especially the case for those with limited dispensable cash or inconsistent income. Acorns (get $5 to invest when you sign up through this link) is an app that will allow you to round up your everyday purchases and invest that spare change. While you may be unable to write a sizeable check for investing each month, you may not notice an extra $.25 tacked onto your morning Starbucks. Stockpile is another micro-investing platform I love. Get $5 to invest free when you sign up here.
The best thing about eBay – the abundant traffic – is also the worst thing. Barriers to entry are low on eBay, meaning competition is fierce. When competition is fierce, profit margin is slim. Unless you can find some form of competitive advantage through your supply chain, how you create listings, or you have a means to increase volume, you’re not going retire rich thanks to eBay.
Audiobooks are another lucrative form of passive income. Speaking from experience, when done right, audiobooks can easily produce thousands upon thousands of dollars per month on autopilot. However, quality and the delivery of high-value content must be the key aim at all times. Leverage Amazon's ACX platform to publish audiobooks for inclusion in Apple's audiobook store and on Audible.com.
That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t go after the easy money from things like ads, but you shouldn’t have that be your only way to make money. Ads may make you some extra money, but every click on these ads often earns you only pennies. Additionally, the folks who visit your pages don’t like ads, and if your page is slathered with them people won’t keep visiting your page, and they definitely won’t be clicking on those ads.
Multi-vendor marketplaces, like ThemeForest, can be very successful. Chose a niche and create a vendor website for it. Your marketplace could be anything, from a platform for local artists to sell their work on, to an online digital product store. Once set up, invite people in that industry to sell their products on your site. You take a percentage of their profits when items sell.
The final point is really important to me because I know that my interest tends to fluctuate. Every five years or so I feel like moving on to something new and leaving my main project. In the case of business, I want to ensure that there is a profitable exit strategy. The better you meet the previous criteria (profit margin, automated, scaleable and passive), the more money you can make when it is time to sell.
Shopify is a great example of the freemium model. By offering some applications for free, they get exposure for their whole business. Since the company was founded in 2004, they have acquired 30,000 customers, including Pixar and the Foo Fighters. Their revolutionary “build-a-business” competitions in the past have produced over $70,000,000 in revenue for over 14,000 entrants.
Many companies, who are facing space constraints, especially those in metro cities, prefer to hire workers outside their offices or outsource certain processes. You can set up an inbound call centre at home to handle such jobs. Research different companies that are outsourcing their work as they may have opportunities for inbound call centre agents. You can work for more than one company. This can be either a part-time or fulltime engagement, depending on your need.
If you’d like to specialize in medical transcription, there are certification courses you can take; you can also benefit from having healthcare-related experience so you’re familiar with the terminology. The same applies for legal transcription – you can do a certification course, and it’s helpful if you know legal lingo or even have legal reference materials at home. If you’d like to do law enforcement transcription, that most often has overlapping requirements with legal transcription.
If you’re looking for inspiration, my friend Michelle Schroeder-Gardner of the website Making Sense of Sense has become the expert on all things affiliate marketing. Michelle earns more than $100,000 per month from her blog and the bulk of her income comes from affiliate sales. Michelle has had so much success with affiliate marketing that she even has her own course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.