You can do a lot of things online these days thanks to technological advancements. One of the most critical technologies is the internet.
It makes the world smaller, as you can talk to someone on the other side of the globe.
A savvy businessperson sees boundless opportunities to make money.
So, how can you make money online? I will go in-depth later in this article, but I want to give you a few ideas right off the bat. You can start a Shopify Store, write books and sell them online, start a profitable blog, sell online courses, and the list goes on.
26 Best Ways to Make Money Online
As you can see, there are many ways to make money online. The only limiting factor is your imagination :).
So, here are some of the most profitable ways to make money online, you can start either as a side business or jump right into it full-time.
1. Start a Shopify Store
Shopify is one of the largest eCommerce platforms with over 1 million stores, so there are plenty of opportunities to make money here.
Small but established businesses can earn between $1,000 to $1,500 per month on average.
You can also make money as a dropshipper, which can net you as much as $10,000.
Level of Expertise
You do not need to have a degree to work on Shopify, but it helps to be a savvy businessperson. More about maximizing your income below.
What You Need to Know About Starting a Shopify Store
There are three ways to make money on Shopify: start an eCommerce store, dropshipping, and affiliate marketing.
When it comes to starting your online store, you can sell pretty much everything so long as it is legal.
You can even sell services. Shopify makes it easy to add items, curate them, and help people check them out.
Dropshipping is different since your work is to market the product and talk to customers and outsource everything else. You don’t have to manage inventory, delivery, or the production itself.
You just need to get people to purchase the products and you get a cut of the revenue.
Setting up a dropshipping business is easy. You can create your product catalog, filter orders straight to your dropshipping partner, and let them handle the rest.
If you are good at marketing, you can also convince other people to join the platform through the Shopify affiliate marketing program. You can earn some extra cash per successful referral.
To help you make the most of Shopify, here are some best practices:
- Research: There will be competition no matter what products or services you offer. So, understand what your competitors are doing in terms of pricing and presentation. Compare them to your shop to see what you can do to gain an edge.
- Product: Display and describe it clearly. People want to know what they are getting. So, use clear and crisp photos and an accurate description of what you sell. You can go a step further and write in a way that resonates with your customers. Make sure to include measurements, color, size variants, special features, and anything else that your customers would want to know. If you are unsure, check how your competitors list their products.
- Customer service: Some people are willing to pay extra for better customer service. A lot of the time, people pick one brand over another because of it. It could be your competitive edge. So, make sure you make it as easy as possible for customers to reach out to you. Include your contact information on your site and use online tools such as Facebook Messenger so you can talk to customers in real-time.
- Flexibility: Be flexible about making changes to everything in your Shopify store because the market is always evolving. You need to keep up with it. Talk to customers, continue to observe your competitors, and look into trends to help you make meaningful changes.
2. Join Alibaba Marketplace
Alibaba is basically Amazon, although it has its base in China. It serves over 190 countries, making it a viable option if you want to dabble in e-commerce. Some notable features include:
- Custom storefront: You can display your products via a storefront. You do not need to understand coding or anything to create a storefront. It is that easy to use.
- Tools: Alibaba offers a suite of marketing and analytics tools to help you fully understand how your products are selling. With these, you can increase your visibility, run ads, etc. at a low cost.
- Communication: Alibaba also has an in-app messaging tool that connects you directly to your buyers and sellers without a hassle.
- Ease of use: Navigating the website both as a buyer and seller is a breeze. Everything you do on the platform is a straightforward affair as the user interface is simple and easy to understand.
- Customer service: Alibaba has a team of professionals ready to help you through every step to enhance your experience on the platform.
Unfortunately, I do not have an exact figure for you because it greatly depends on what you sell. But I can tell you that it is possible to make at least $1,000 a month.
Level of Expertise
It will be a bit tricky if you are not familiar with eCommerce. Other than that, you do not need a formal education.
What You Need to Know About Alibaba
There are many ways to make money on Alibaba.
A quick look on the platform will inform you that there are a lot of products on sale in bulk quantities. Unless you own a manufacturing line, this route is probably not viable for you.
Another popular way to make money is through dropshipping. That means, you list your products online without actually having them in stock.
When the orders come through, you buy from a third party to fulfill them. This strategy works because you do not need to invest a lot of money.
If you happen to be popular on social media, either through your work on Spotify, YouTube, or any other means, you can sell merchandise as well. This is a bit complicated to set up at first but will help you generate a sizable income in the long run.
3. Sell Your Products on Amazon
Amazon is another great platform to sell products online.
In fact, you can also try buying from Alibaba and selling on Amazon at a slightly higher price and pocket the difference.
Amazon is one of the world’s largest online markets in the world, so there are plenty of opportunities to make money here.
If you want to make money on Amazon as a seller, most of them make over $1,000 per month. Over half of them make anywhere from $1,000 to $25,000 a month.
Level of Expertise
While you do not need a degree to become an Amazon seller, you still need to navigate through Amazon’s competitive environment if you want to turn a profit. So, you need to be at least a good businessperson.
What You Need to Know About Amazon
Here, I will tell you some ways you can make money on Amazon from home.
- Sell your products: Private label is the process of slapping your brand on an existing item and selling it to consumers. Thanks to FBA, Amazon will handle the delivery for you.
- Sell books: Kindle Direct Publishing also belongs to Amazon, and they allow you to publish your books on the platform. You can also print physical copies of your work too.
- Deliver goods: While Amazon has its delivery service, you can join them as a driver through Amazon’s Flex program.
- Amazon’s MTurk: Amazon’s Mechanical Turk program is a crowdsourcing marketplace where you can perform tasks such as participating in surveys, data validation, etc.
- Sell your DIY projects: Amazon Handmade is a market where artisans can sell their goods, but you can only get in via an invitation.
- Amazon Service: Amazon is also dipping its toes into the gig economy. With Amazon Services, you can sell your services online.
- Amazon’s CamperForce: Amazon has a fleet of RVers who help out with seasonal rushes. Basically, you drive around the country and do a quick job here and there in an Amazon warehouse and then cash in before you head to your RV vacation destination.
4. Flip Items on Ebay
As the title suggests, the idea is to buy items on eBay, turn around and sell them at a higher price.
For example, if you buy shoes for $50 and then sell them for $75, you just made $25 in profit. Of course, it is not that easy, and I will tell you some tricks to maximize your income.
The average eBay seller makes $35,000 a year. It might be hard to hit that mark when starting, especially if you are unfamiliar with eCommerce. No worries, I have a few tips to share below.
Level of Expertise
Similar to Amazon, you just need to be a good salesperson to make money on eBay.
What You Need to Know About Flipping Items on eBay
First, you need to sign up on eBay. You have two options here:
- eBay store: For a small monthly fee, you would have access to free listings, branding options, and dedicated customer service
- Listing through profile: You do not need a storefront on eBay. You get 50 free listings every month. Any more than that and you have to pay. You also need to cover the final value fee when you make the sale.
From there, you need to hunt for the right items to flip. So, go to the eBay search and begin your search. You want to consider 4 things:
- Item quality: Items in new condition are ideal. Look for items below the market price and contact the seller. Ask for more information and pictures so you have a good idea of what you are buying.
- Market price: To find out the market price, use the “Sold Items” filter. Look for similar items and see their prices. Also, look at the items currently listed as well to get a feel for the price.
- Profit margin: How much to charge for your flipped item depends on how much profit you want to make. Ideally, the items you buy should be 50% below their market value so you can have plenty of margins to work with.
- Package and ship: Don’t forget to consider other expenses with the sale such as packaging and shipping.
On top of this, I want to tell you how to list items so they sell quickly. Here are a few tips:
- Create an attractive listing: Use keywords, be descriptive about the item, use high-quality photos, mention the cost and time to ship the item, add the minimum offer you are willing to take, and maybe add freebies if applicable (and profitable).
- Communicate and negotiate: Some people want to score a deal or try to mess around with no intention of buying. Do not let them waste your time. Set a minimum price and be firm about it.
- Rating: Your feedback score determines how fast you are going to sell your flipped items. The score depends on the item, communication, shipping time, and shipping charges. Make sure to give buyers a nudge a few days after the item arrives so they can give their feedback.
As for shipping, USPS, UPS, and FedEx are the best. USPS is the cheapest, but a lot of people do not like the service.
Also, use PayPal’s print and ship to cut down on shipping costs and use regional boxes.
5. Pick a Profitable Niche and Start Blogging
If you have a website or a blog and love writing, you can make money from it as well.
There are many ways to monetize your blog. If you do it right and with a bit of luck, you can start a profitable blog business from it as well.
How much you earn depends entirely on how you plan to monetize it.
For example, Adam Enfroy blogged about the business of blogging back in 2019 and earned $1.5 million in two years. Ryan Robinson started a blog about the same subject and earned $30,00 a month.
There are many ways to monetize your blog.
Your first source of income is probably through Google’s ads. The idea is that you put up ads on your website through Google.
When people visit your blog, they see those ads, and you earn money that way. It is the easiest way to make money through blogging, but also does not generate a lot of money.
How much you earn here also depends on the location, category, monthly page views, etc.
For instance, if you are in the US, receive 50,000 monthly page views, and your topic is arts and entertainment, your annual income is $3,372. If your blog is about real estate, the average annual income is $8,700.
Therefore, you need an alternate source of income if you want to earn more. Think of your blog as a means to an end, not the end itself. You can offer your products and services depending on your blog’s niche.
Alternatively, you can sell those from another vendor and take a cut through affiliate programs.
Level of Expertise
This depends on your niche. If your blog is all about health, you need to be an expert in that area. You might need a degree.
On top of this, you need to have a flair for creative writing and know how to engage readers.
Also, you need to learn the SEO basics. SEO stands for “Search engine optimization” and is the way how to optimize your content, so your articles appear on the top positions in Google Search results.
What You Need to Know About Blogging
If this looks like your cup of tea, then you would be happy to know that starting your blog is straightforward.
The most important step is to decide what you will write about because it influences how much you earn through advertisements as well as how you can sell your products and services.
So, pick a profitable niche. Narrow your focus and try to write about an industry where people spend large sums of money on products and services.
For example, the software industry is quite profitable since many companies nowadays offer recurring commissions.
A profitable blog niche satisfies the following criteria:
- It is something you are good at or interested in: You need a lot of high-quality content to establish an audience and start making money. It is difficult to do that unless you are writing about something you know well or have a genuine interest in. So, stick with something you enjoy.
- Lack of competition: It will be harder to generate traffic to your website if the first page of the search results is all big-name brands that have massive marketing budgets. Use Google search to assess keyword ranking difficulty to gauge competition in your niche.
- Monetization potential: Other than ads, how can you make money through your blogs? Can you sell products and services? Can you join an affiliate program?
On top of this, I want to give you a few more ideas on how you can make money blogging:
- Email marketing: It allows you to reach your audience directly via their inbox. Offer incentives for opting into your email list by giving them free checklists, resources, and blog content as a PDF file (recipes, script, etc.) From there, other companies can sponsor you by recommending their products through your email list.
- Write sponsored posts: Businesses need social proof that their products are worth buying. So, they sponsor bloggers to publish reviews. They may reach out to you directly or you can try asking your favorite brands about it. But ensure that you are honest with your reviews and mention that a company-sponsored the post.
- Sell ads placement: Advertisements do not always have to come from AdSense. Some companies are willing to purchase a space on your website for their ads. Just make sure that they are not intrusive and ruin the reading experience.
- Sell membership: Give your special readers the VIP experience. They can pay to join a membership program with certain benefits. These can be special offers, discounts, books, courses, etc. Make it a subscription service.
- Promote other hustles: You may have a YouTube channel or a podcast running alongside your blog. Link them all together to diversify your content. For instance, if you run a cooking blog, you can make cooking videos on your YouTube channel. Then, link the video to your article and vice versa.
6. Get Paid to Take Surveys
This is a great solution if you do not have much time or money.
You just need to share information and opinion. Instead of watching cat videos on YouTube while waiting for the bus, you can take a few minutes to fill out a survey. The rewards for your effort can be money or gift cards.
I want to make this clear now that it is not a great source of income.
You can make more money in other side gigs. Online surveys should supplement your income. It should not be your main source of cash because you are not going to make much.
So, how much can you earn taking online surveys? Roughly $800 a year. Some of that would be in the form of gift cards, so you cannot even spend that directly. Still, it might save you a couple of bucks here and there for a few minutes of your time.
Level of Expertise
You do not need a degree for this. Just a computer or a smartphone with an internet connection will be enough.
What You Need to Know About Online Surveys
Sadly, taking online surveys is as straightforward as you think. Some survey sites are worth checking out, others are not. I’ll give you two warnings:
- It can take a while: Some surveys can take 15 to 20 minutes to complete. Sometimes, they do not pay you because you fall into the wrong demographics. Speaking of which, the payment is not instantaneous, either.
- Never pay for access: Keep in mind that they are paying you, not the other way around. It is a scam if you have to pay money to take the survey.
Yes, there are scam websites out there. But worry not, I have here a few legit survey sites:
- Swagbucks: One of the biggest and most reliable paid survey sites. So far, users have received over $600,000,000 in rewards across the globe. Rewards include money, prize draws, and vouchers.
- Branded Surveys: A popular option among survey enthusiasts as it offers a lot of paid surveys.
- LifePoints: You can earn points by filling out surveys. You can then exchange them for gift cards or money through PayPal.
7. Writing Books
There are two ways to make money writing books. You can sell fiction or nonfiction work. Thanks to the internet, publishing your book is a straightforward process. You can earn a bit of cash selling books on Amazon and you can expand your business from there.
The average U.S. nonfiction book sells only 250 copies a year and fewer than 3,000 copies over its lifetime. A lot of people love fiction more than nonfiction, so you can sell more story books. Of course, similar to blogging, you should consider your books as a means to an end.
Level of Expertise
Having a degree can make you seem credible, depending on the kind of book you write. You need a good grasp of English, a keen eye for detail, and a way with words.
What You Need to Know About Writing Books
You probably will not become a millionaire selling books online, unless they become a hit like Harry Potter, Sherlock Holmes, or Game of Thrones. But that is not the only reason why authors fail to make money. Here are the top 4 reasons why writers fail:
- One book: To make enough money, you need momentum, and one book is not going to cut it. You need a library of books and maximize your earnings for each of them.
- Not staying with the trend: The self-publishing industry is constantly changing and you need to stay on top of it. Failure to do so would see your sales plummet.
- Staying with only one platform: A lot of people stick to Amazon. It makes sense since they hold up to 85% share of the ebooks market. That does not mean that you cannot sell your book elsewhere, either. If there is any change to the platform, your income will be affected as well.
- Lack of quality: Your book needs a beautiful cover, excellent editing, and a compelling book description. These create a product that would attract readers to your work.
It gets better. You make money as an author not from the sales of your books alone.
What is more lucrative is the relationship you form with your readers through your works. Through this connection, you can start to sell other products and services.
For instance, suppose you have a suite of nonfiction books. People love your work and may be willing to pay you to coach them. Some may invite you to their company to give a speech or training to their employees.
For fiction books, you only need to look at J.K. Rowling and George R.R. Martin. They make more money through TV and film adaptations of their work than the sales of their books.
8. Offer Services on Freelancing Platforms
Freelancing is no longer that strange of a job. Many Americans have side gigs to supplement their income.
As a freelancer, you offer different services ranging from digital marketing, web design, social media management, etc. You determine your hours and rate. In other words, you are a self-employed entrepreneur.
The best part about all of this is that you can do this completely online. That means, you can work from the comfort of your home.
According to ZipRecruiter, the average freelancer made $63,488 back in 2019. How much you earn depends on the services you provide, your skillset, and your experience.
I want to point out that even entry-level freelancers can make a fair bit of cash if they know what they are doing.
Level of Expertise
This is a bit of a wildcard. I will say “it depends” because it really depends on what services you are offering.
If you work as a freelance ghostwriter, you just need to be proficient in English. If you want to build websites for people or build apps, you need to understand coding. If you want to work as a video editor, then you need to be familiar with video editing software.
What You Need to Know About Working as a Freelancer
To begin, you need to register on a freelancer platform. Make sure you fully understand how much they are going to take from your earnings and how you can secure your payment.
From there, pick your niche. It is tempting to present yourself as someone who can do it all, but that is not a good way to make money.
Instead, identify your niche and focus on becoming an expert. A good niche is something that you are passionate about and have some experience in.
Next, think of what services you will offer. What are you most comfortable with? If you are a web developer, you can offer services such as WordPress development, eCommerce development, etc.
Make sure to pick one that is in high demand. A quick browse through the job listings on the website should give you an idea of this.
Then, you want to develop your ideal customer persona. Basically, think of what type of customer is ideal for you.
That includes age, gender, location, interests, profession, etc. That way, you can think like one of them so you can develop an effective pitch.
You also want to develop your portfolio. It is a collection of your previous work that you can show to your potential clients. If you do not have one, it is going to be difficult to convince them. If that is you, no worries. You can create a few samples for now.
Then, develop your offering. Think of how much you should charge for each service and how you want to package them together. Again, a quick look at other freelancers on the platform should give you some ideas.
When it is time to pitch to the client, keep it short and simple. Try to relate to your client while staying professional and encourage them to reach out to you.
9. Become Instagram Creator
There are a few ways to make money on Instagram. Like all social media platforms out there, the actual income comes from sponsorships and the sales of products and services.
The number is not exactly clear and not a lot of people want to talk about it, either.
Business Insider estimated that an influencer with 1,000 to 10,000 followers can make about $901 per post. Kylie Jenner makes $983,100 per ad or sponsored post. Cristiano Ronaldo makes over $1.5 million per post.
Level of Expertise
To establish yourself as an expert, you need something to prove it. You might need a degree, but most of the time, you just need to show that you have experience or at least do extensive research in your niche.
What You Need to Know About Instagram Creators
You do not have a “business” to start making money on Instagram. Assuming you have a sizable following and a clear niche, you too can be an influencer. Here are a few ideas to start:
- Partner with brands: The most popular way to make money on Instagram. You just need to look for a brand whose values align with yours, reach out and see what partnership you can arrange. They may pay you to make a post or offer you free products. Make sure to let your followers know that the company is paying for the post. Also, follow Instagram’s branded content guidelines.
- Join an affiliate program: Like the previous idea, you simply advertise other people’s products. If your followers buy the products through your link, you get a cut of the profit.
- Sell your merch: Depending on your niche, you can sell your merch. It is free marketing when your followers walk around with your branding on their backpacks, water bottle, or hat.
- Sell online courses: Similar to blogging, you can sell courses through your Instagram as well.
10. Earn with Facebook
With over 2 billion monthly active users on Facebook, you are looking at a pretty popular platform to promote your products and services.
The actual figure varies wildly because it depends on what you do with your Facebook page. But if you only want to run ads, you can get an average of $8.75 per 1,000 views
Level of Expertise
Similar to Instagram, you do not need a formal education to make money on Facebook. However, you need to show your audience that you are a reliable source of information or at least entertaining enough to be worth their time.
What You Need to Know About Facebook
But before you can make money on Facebook, you need to build an audience first. Share good posts, links, images, etc. Make a name for yourself as an expert in the field. So, your Facebook fan page should be a location where people can get to know you. If they like the content you put out, you earn their trust and respect.
Similar to blogging, you just need to produce high-quality content for your followers. If you happen to have a blog, YouTube channel, or any other social media site, all the better! Make full use of all those platforms to increase traffic and follower numbers.
Before you jump the gun, make sure you are eligible for monetization first. They are:
- Follow Facebook’s community standards: No graphic violence, nudity, or hate speech.
- Partner monetization policies: Applies at the page level, covers the content of your page, how the content is shared, and how the page receives and makes online payments
- Content monetization policies: Allies at the content level, covers how the content of each post. That means, no violent, sexual, criminal, graphic, or profane content.
When you have a sizable following, you can start to monetize your content through the following means:
- Ads in videos: ads in the middle of a video are more successful because if a user is willing to sit through up to that point, chances are they are willing to watch the ads so they can finish the video. People usually ignore ads in their feed anyway.
- Sell items in Facebook Marketplace: Facebook now has a new platform where you can buy or sell products. If you run an online shop already, why not diversify to Facebook Marketplace?
- Sell from your page: Similar to the idea above but this is a bit tricky. To make money here, you need to interject your high-quality content with occasional sales to be successful.
- Sponsorship from brands: Influencer marketing can be helpful since they provide authentic and useful content, and help direct their supporters to your page. That means, improvement in both reach and credibility.
- Donations from fans: Offer incentives to some of your devout followers by giving them exclusive access to content through fan subscriptions. Facebook has a “Stars” feature that allows users to buy and send stars to tip their creators.
11. Start Your YouTube Channel
YouTube is another social media platform.
Suffice to say, YouTube is the largest video streaming platform in the world with over 2.5 billion monthly users. They consume over a billion hours of videos every day. So, there is plenty of opportunities to carve yourself a piece of that pie.
Similar to Instagram, Facebook, blogging, and writing, making money on YouTube is more than just through the ads revenue on your videos. You can expand your business when you have a large audience.
The average YouTube channel gets around $18 per 1,000 ad views. How much you earn depends on your location and the kind of content you put out.
Level of Expertise
You do not need a formal education to work on YouTube. However, you need to be familiar with video editing software to make your videos entertaining to watch.
What You Need to Know About YouTube Creators
So, how can you make money on YouTube? There are many ways, but I want to float a few ideas to help you get started.
The first and most popular source of revenue is through YouTube Partner Program. That is a fancy way of saying “ads”.
As a content creator, this is going to be your first step in monetization on YouTube. You can apply for YouTube Partner Program when you have over 1,000 subscribers and the annual watch hour exceeds 4,000.
You can apply by going to YouTube Studio in your account, clicking on “Other Features”, then “Monetization”.
Read the eligibility requirements and agree to them, create a new Google AdSense account or connect to an existing one, and then specify your monetization preference.
However, due to how YouTube regulates the content on its platform, YouTube Partner Program might not be the best option anymore.
Some people’s YouTube channel no longer makes money due to the nature of their content. Even talking about sensitive subjects or events, with zero images of the topic in your video, is enough for YouTube to demonetize your video.
So, what other methods are available? You have the usual culprits:
- Sell merch
- Offer online coaching or services
- Link to your social media sites
- Channel membership
- Fans donation
- Brand sponsorships
What is fascinating is the fact that you can do livestreams on your channel.
This is particularly effective if you have a gaming channel. People can talk to you during the livestream, send donations, etc. It is a great way for you to engage with your audience directly. Another incentive for channel members is the fact that they have access to special emojis.
Pro tip: It is clear at this point that YouTube Shorts videos work on a different algorithm compared to regular videos. One way to drive traffic to your channel then is to create YouTube Shorts videos regularly to attract viewers. YouTube Shorts videos are around 1 minute long, and they are in portrait orientation.
12. Get Paid by TikTok
TikTok is very similar to the now-defunct Vine. It is a video-sharing platform where all videos are usually 1 minute long.
It is a social media platform, so how you make money here will be like other social media platforms.
Again, that depends on how you plan to monetize your content. If you have a large enough following, you can make over $80,000.
It takes a while to get there though. Until then, you can earn between 2 to 4 cents for every 1,000 views through the TikTok Creator Fund.
Level of Expertise
Although you do not need a degree, you need to at least be able to make professional-level content to be successful on the platform.
What You Need to Know About TikTok Influencers
There are a few ways to make money on TikTok. Let’s talk about the TikTok Creator Fund first because this is going to be one of the first sources of revenue from the platform.
TikTok Creator Fund is a pool of cash that TikTok gives to everyone in the Creator Fund. To join, you need at least 10,000 followers and get over 100,000 views in the past 30 days. How much you earn here depends on how engaging your content is.
Other methods include affiliate marketing, brand sponsorships, and the sale of merch and services.
The process is largely the same. The only difference is the platform. Instead of reiterating those, I will tell you how you can get the large following you need to start scoring sponsorships.
- Find your niche: Again, you want to establish yourself as a subject matter expert in your niche. It is difficult to cater to a broad array of people with different interests, so focus on only one specific niche.
- Be authentic: Fake it till you make it does not apply here. Yes, it might work for a while, but people will notice that you are not being genuine. So, stay true to yourself. Chasing the trend is fine and all, but what keeps people coming back to your content is your authenticity. You cannot please everyone. I urge you to think of it this way: Not everyone hates you. The people who like you for who you really are will stay and that is how you will earn money.
- Be transparent: If a brand sponsors your content, or if you are advertising a product or service through an affiliate program, let your followers know. TikTok has a “branded content toggle” for your convenience.
- Take inspiration: If you are unsure what you want to do on the platform, look to your favorite content creators. They should give you some ideas.
- Advertise in moderation: Yes, sponsorships and affiliate contents make you money, but what enabled you to do this is your followers. They come to you because they like your regular content, not the advertisements. If you keep hammering out sponsored content, you will lose followers very quickly.
- Keep at it: Making money on TikTok, or any social network platform, is not easy. If it is, everybody would be doing it. Many successful creators you see on the platform also had to start from 0 followers. What got them to where they are today is hard work and dedication. Your effort will pay off.
13. Invest in Stocks
Any financial expert worth a penny will tell you that one of the best ways to build long-term wealth is investing in stocks.
The good news is that it can be completely passive if you want. The bad news is that it is a waiting game. You see, stocks’ values can grow exponentially over the years, but their daily movement is unpredictable.
There is no exact figure here, unfortunately. I can tell you that the stock market’s average return is 10% but you need to stay invested long enough.
Level of Expertise
You need to have a solid grasp of the stock market. You might be spending a lot of time looking at charts and numbers. On top of this, you need to have steady hands. That means, you need to let facts and figures guide your decisions, not emotions.
What You Need to Know About Stocks
Making money in stocks is all about patience. But before you whip out your wallet and say “I want to buy Apple and Tesla stocks”, you need a way to start investing. To do that, you need an account on a brokerage platform. It only takes about 15 minutes to set up.
Though it is worth doing your research, I will name a few such platforms here:
- Ameritrade: Excellent educational content, solid customer support, and a wide range of product offerings. Best brokerage platform for beginners.
- InteractiveBrokers: Low margin interest rates, excellent range of investable foreign and domestic assets, and superior order execution. They give a better experience than Ameritrade but you need some experience to make the most of it.
- Tastyworks: A suite of tools for analyzing and monitoring option trades, excellent options-specific material, and a better trading experience with the recent dashboard improvements. Best platform for options trading.
With an account set up, it is time to start making money. You have a few options here.
The first is to buy and hold. That means, buying stocks and sitting on them. It is that simple.
This strategy works because you are taking advantage of time. The real earning potential comes from long-term investing and compound interest from your assets. You need to start early to make full use of it, though.
Many investors gravitate toward individual stocks and stock funds. Buying individual stocks has its drawbacks. You need quite a bit of money, takes time, and experience to do it properly.
Alternatively, you can diversify your investment by putting some money toward stock funds. Experts suggest that most people invest in funds that track major indexes passively, such as Nasdaq or S&P 500. You get around a 10% annual return on the stock market with little investment.
From there, you can reinvest. When you own a company’s stock, you become its shareholder.
Many businesses pay their shareholders a dividend. You get periodic payments from the company. The exact amount depends on how much the business earned.
It might be tempting to just spend that money, but I urge you to reconsider. Instead, reinvest. You can buy more shares, which means more money from dividends.
Put it through a few cycles of profit and reinvestment, and you end up with a lot of money on your hands.
There is another way to make money in stocks, but it is not for everybody. You can try buying and selling stocks daily as their prices fluctuate. It requires a bit of know-how and luck.
This is “Day Trading”. There are plenty of tutorials on YouTube that you can check out if you want to try your luck. The market there is highly speculative though, so proceed with caution.
Other than that, I will give you three reasons why many people do not make money from investing:
- Safety: Some people want to wait until the stock market is “safe” to invest. What they are saying is that they are waiting for the stock prices to go up. The thing is that stock prices go up and down every day. So, people let fear or “loss aversion” behavior drive their decisions. You might sell stocks or not even buy them when prices are cheap. You end up avoiding a short-term loss to achieve a long-term gain.
- Wait: Some people want to wait for stock prices to drop. Of course, you would want to buy low and sell high. To quote a line from The Wolf of Wallstreet, “Nobody knows if a stock is going to go up, down, sideways or in circles”. It is impossible to predict.
- Boredom: Everybody wants a bit of excitement in their lives. I completely understand when some investors want something exciting from their investment, like in a casino. However, like many things in life, the right thing to do is often the boring one. Investing is a long game. Some people want to try their luck and sell their stocks. I am not saying that you should not sell your stock. I am saying that you should not let your emotions guide your decisions.
14. Start a Podcast
A podcast is basically your traditional radio show. The main difference lies in convenience.
While radio shows follow a certain schedule, you can listen to podcasts from anywhere. That also means that you can listen to podcasts at your convenience instead of waiting to catch a radio program at a certain time.
You also do not need a radio to listen to podcasts. Just a mobile phone or computer with a working internet connection is enough.
It is no wonder that podcasts are becoming incredibly popular. You can listen to them on the way to work. If you do not want to make YouTube or TikTok videos but have a few ideas to share, then podcasting might be a good idea.
Plus, it scales well. You can do it as a simple side gig or go full-time.
According to AdvertiseCast, the average 30-second CPM rates are $18. 60-second CPMs are at $25.
How much you earn varies. You can go to Patreon and type “podcast” in the search box to see how much some podcasters make, though not everyone is willing to share their earnings.
Level of Expertise
To become a podcast host, you just need to have an entertaining and engaging audio persona. You might not need to have any formal education for this.
What You Need to Know About Podcast Hosts
Before we proceed about how you can make money podcasting, I want to give a disclaimer.
There are many ways to make money here. What is tricky is the fact that every method is viable or effective at different stages of growth. That means, just because a certain method works for a popular podcast does not mean it will work for you.
With that out of the way, how can you make money podcasting?
To give you an idea, think of it as voice-only blogging. Immediately, all the methods I spoke of about blog monetization apply here. The usual suspects are:
- Fans donations
- Premium access through membership
- Brand sponsorships and advertisements
- Affiliate marketing
- The sale of products and services
On top of this, I will tell you some tips on how to make the most out of your podcasting career:
- Quality: I mean both the audio quality as well as the content itself. Both need to be good before anyone would consider spending any time listening to you. Luckily, it does not take much to get decent audio quality so most of your efforts should be on the content.
- Community: Think about your audience and community. They are more than just numbers. Create a sense of community in your niche. If you can nurture a community that supports you and your podcast, they will respond positively to ads and sponsorships.
- Get creative: Understand your audience and your podcast well so you can figure out how to make money effectively. They determine what monetization methods would work. For instance, if your podcast is a comedy, trying to sell a course there is not a good idea.
- Diversify: It would be perfect if you can earn money directly from sponsorships and ads, but I would not wholly rely on it. Think about how you can diversify your offerings such as online courses, premium content, etc.
- Integrity: While the goal is to make money, remember that your audience is the one who enabled you to score those deals and partnerships. If those offers do not feel right for your audience, say no. More often than not, you can find better deals around the corner.
15. Try Part-time Photography
If you have a camera and know a thing or two about photo editing, you can try your hands at photography. There are many ways to make money here and I will show you some of the most lucrative methods.
According to ZipRecruiter, the average hourly wage for part-time photographers is $23. Annually, that is $48,789.
Level of Expertise
Having a camera is a good start, but to make money with photography, you need to understand how to edit photos to bring out their best. Here are a few things to focus on:
- Chromatic aberration
- Sensor spots, dust, and blemishes
- Cropping and alignment
- White balance
What You Need to Know About Part-Time Photography
So, here are some ways you can make money through photography.
You can try to sell your photographs on your website. This ties in nicely if you happen to have a blog post. In fact, you can take it a step further. In addition to selling photos, you can sell online photography courses.
That can range from how to take good photos to post-production techniques. All the credibility is in the amazing photos you put up for sale.
Other than that, you can try to find work. Some magazine publications, event hosts, and businesses may be on the lookout for a photographer to help them out.
You can make more money that way but it can be physically demanding as well as time-consuming since you need to be physically present for the shoots.
16. Become a Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant may have many responsibilities, depending on the client’s needs.
Some only work on design or digital marketing whereas others offer general services. Common VA tasks include customer support, data entry, blogging, bookkeeping, inbox management, scheduling, etc.
Many VA charges hourly, but you can also arrange for payments upon the completion of specific tasks. Some also charge monthly or yearly rates.
How much you earn depends on your skillset and the services you offer. You set your rate.
To give you an idea, many entry-level VA earns around $15 an hour and the industry average is $19.46 per hour.
Level of Expertise
While you do not need a formal education to become a virtual assistant, you still need to develop your skillsets. The way to do that is by taking courses to help you build organizational skills and learn specific tools.
What You Need to Know About Working as a VA
You only need a few things to start your career as a virtual assistant. You just need a computer or laptop and wifi. Other than that, here are some other steps to maximize your income:
- Take a virtual assistant training course
- Consider what services you want to offer
- Pick a good rate: you can find some examples on various VA sites
- Find jobs: Your favorite job search site should have a few VA positions
- Build an online presence: Some companies want to see proof so having a social media platform or your website goes a long way
- Market your services: You can create online ads or sales pages to expand your reach
- Set your hours: VAs have flexible hours, so determine what hours you want to work and communicate that to your clients
- Automate: Some tools can help you automate certain admin tasks such as invoicing
- Prioritize: If you have enough work to keep busy, say no to low-paying jobs and focus on ones that pay the most
- Raise rates: After working in the industry for a year or so, raise your rate since you have more experience
17. Website Testing
The job is fairly simple. You test a website’s functionality by using it the same way a normal user would.
The goal is to ensure that the user experience is good. Most of the time, you need to record your screen as well as your voice so you can give feedback as you go along.
If you want to take it a step further, you can be a bug tester. Some may say this is a more fun job because your goal is to try to find a way to break the website. You look for errors or other technical issues that the developer overlooked.
How much money you earn depends on the complexity of the test. A short one can get you around $3 or so and an hour-long video test that requires you to record video and audio can net you $100.
Level of Expertise
You do not need formal education, but you do need a computer, an internet connection, a microphone, and a webcam. If you want to be a bug tester, it pays to know a thing or two about website building as well so you know what you can to do break things.
What You Need to Know About Website Testing
To begin, you need to sign up on testing websites. Here are my recommendations:
- User Testing: Requires a practice test and then screening tests for each paid job to ensure you are a good fit.
- UTest: A bit more complex than User Testing but there is a ton of earning potential. Some people work full-time here that earn over $3,000 a month.
- WhatUsersDo: After downloading their screen recorder and taking a practice test, you are good to go. You get about 3-5 tests a month via email but you can get more if you do well.
- User Test: Sign-up is convenient since you only need your email. You might get some exclusive tests here because they are an invite-only site.
- Enroll: They usually only pay from $0.10 to $1.50 per test, but the job is very simple. Most of the time, you just need to compare two web pages or click somewhere. The best part is that you can do these tests on any device.
The only downside to web testing is the fact that it is not a full-time gig. There are more testers than customers, so you are always chasing after that next project. So, unless you are really, really good, chances are that this will stay as a side gig. But I have a few tips here to help maximize your income:
- Take the sample test or interview seriously: Some companies want to do a vetting process so they can select the best candidates to test their websites. So, take those interviews and sample tests seriously.
- Quantity: You can sign up for as many testing sites as you want, so do that. The more you have, the higher your chances of getting money. Just make sure you have a spreadsheet or something to keep track of the tests you did.
- Be honest: It is tempting to lie so you can take more tests. If people found out, you would be banned permanently from the platform. Instead, be honest and as thorough as you can. You will get offers that closely match your interests, which makes them easier to do.
- Equipment: The camera and microphone on your laptop should be good enough. Still, when it comes to paid tests, you should double-check that your equipment is suitable for the job. It only takes a few minutes.
- Act quickly: There are only so many places for each test, so act as soon as you see one that is available.
- Don’t rush: When you get a foot through the door, be careful. You want to complete the test quickly to earn as fast as you can, just make sure you do not overlook things or give insufficient answers.
18. Become a Twitch Streamer
Twitch is one of the biggest online livestreaming platforms.
Content creators play video games, esports, music, and more while talking to the audience. While there is different content on the platform, video gaming is the most popular content.
At any given moment, streamers are playing over 3,000 unique games. If livestreaming is appealing to you, then you should try streaming on Twitch.
It depends on how many viewers tune into your livestreams. The more people are watching, the more you earn. To give you an idea, here is an analysis from Streamer Facts:
|Average number of viewers per stream||Income per month|
|5 to 10||$50 to $200|
|20||$200 to $400|
|50||$500 to $750|
|100||$1,000 to $1,500|
|50,000||$100,000 to $200,000|
Level of Expertise
You do not need a formal education to become a Twitch streamer. If you plan on livestreaming games though, you need to be at least decent at it. No one wants to watch someone plays a computer game badly, after all.
What You Need to Know About Twitch
To begin, you need a computer, laptop, or smartphone, as well as a good microphone.
A camera is optional but many streamers use it because it helps them connect better to viewers. You also need an internet connection and an account on Twitch.
From there, you need to build a Twitch audience. It will take hard work and a lot of time.
Use your existing social media accounts such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter, as well as your blog website if you have it to promote your Twitch broadcasts.
You need to pick a niche. Again, gaming is the most popular content on the platform, so you should go for that.
Also, try to pick popular games that recently came out. You do not have to be super good at the game to attract an audience.
If you can keep your audience entertained by talking to them, asking questions, cracking jokes, and making witty remarks, you are well on your way to making money.
From there, you have a few options to monetize your content. Again, we have the usual suspects such as:
- Brand sponsorships (make sure to follow the terms of service and add a disclaimer)
- Fans donations through “bits” (basically Facebook’s “stars” feature)
- Fan’s subscription, of which there are 3 (make sure to offer compelling features such as emojis, subscriber badges, ad-free viewing, exclusive streams, etc.)
- Offer coaching, where applicable
I also want to talk about the Twitch Partner program. To be eligible, you need the following:
- Stream for 25 hours in total on the platform
- Stream on 12 different days
- Average of 75 viewers
When you are a Twitch Partner, you can get more money through advertising. You can run ads during your streams. According to Muir Dragonne, a Twitch Streamer, the CPM is $3.50. That means, you earn that much for every 1,000 people who see the ad. The length does not matter, meaning that a 15-second ad makes the same money as a 3-minute one. You will be making pennies at first if you have less than 1,000 viewers, but it can stack up quickly. Once you have a large community, running an ad or two every 30 minutes can bring in a fair bit of cash.
Here are a few extra tips to help you along your way:
- Profile: Spend a good amount of time putting together your profile. Be concise about what kind of content you are making.
- Content: Stream regularly. A lot of Twitch streamers do not make money because they do not broadcast regularly.
- Viewers: They are the reason why you are making money. So, your top priority is to keep them happy. Try watching popular streamers to see how they engage their audience. Practice a lot, both in communication and the game itself to create an engaging stream.
- Network: Interact with other streamers. If you become friends with some of them, you can stream together as well, which is a way to expand your reach.
- Online presence: Use every social media platform to promote your online presence.
19. Online Tutoring
Many students need some help in their education. It can be math, chemistry, history, you name it.
Think back to the time when you were in school. Was there a subject you struggled with? It is the same everywhere. Every student has trouble with certain subjects, and there is your market.
Thanks to the internet, you do not have to be physically present to help those students out. Working hours can be flexible and you can work at your own pace. It is a win-win situation.
On average, online tutors can earn anywhere between $11 to $20 an hour for common subjects. How much you earn depends on the subject, your experience, education level, as well as the company you work for.
Level of Expertise
Companies prefer tutors who already have teaching experience or a bachelor’s degree in the subject. Having such qualifications can open up more job opportunities, but they are optional.
Some online tutors do not have certifications or much in the way of experience at all.
What You Need to Know About Online Tutoring
You need to have a computer, a camera, a microphone, and a working internet connection to start. There are also materials you need to prepare for the subject as well.
Here is how you can begin your career as an online tutor:
- Pick a subject and niche: There are many to choose from. The best one for you should strike that perfect balance between your passion and the profit potential. It does not have to be the subjects that schools teach, either. Your audience also does not have to be young people who are still in school.
- Decide how you want to work: You have two options.
- The riskier route is to start an independent tutoring business, which works well if you have a website to prove your worth. However, you need to find our students as well as handle administrative tasks. Use Zoom to run online lessons, Calendly or Acuity to manage your schedule, PayPal to take payments, and an email list to contact clients.
- The safer route is to set up shop on an online tutoring platform. They handle everything except the teaching for you. The downside is that some platforms pay teachers a certain rate that could cripple your earning potential and they also have strict requirements. Some popular platforms include Outschool, Preply, Cambly, Tutor.com, and italki.
From there, you need to have a good place to set up. A quiet environment without interruptions and good lighting are ideal. If you are working with kids, consider using a colorful background.
As for the teaching materials, you need a few things: lesson plans, props, PowerPoint presentations, a whiteboard, and other activities. You can find a lot of material from other teachers online.
Next, you need to find students. If you set up shop on an online tutoring website, you should not need to look far before you find your first student.
The tutoring job boards should show you any listings that match your specialties. But if you are building your client base from scratch, you need to put in a bit more work. Consider the following:
- Publish free content: Share mini-lessons and tips on social media sites and blog posts. Offer value and some people will come to you for more.
- Ask your network: Maybe some of your friends need your experience, or they know someone who does. Ask them if anyone needs tutoring on your topics.
- Ask your existing students: When you have a few happy students, you can try asking them for referrals. You can also reward them if they help you out in the form of a discount.
- LinkedIn: Make sure you mention that you offer online tutoring services on your LinkedIn page.
Other than that, consider creating an online community where students can ask questions, access resources, or talk to their fellow learners. It can be free or paid.
The idea is to give students a place where they can come back and continue learning. If you don’t have a website or a suitable online space yet, I recommend starting with Facebook first and go from there.
Finally, try to diversify your tutoring income. You can sell online courses since you just need to sell pre-recorded lessons. Learners can then tackle the subject at their own pace. It is a great source of passive income if you do not have that much time.
Alternatively, you can sell educational resources. Make an e-book, study guides, activity books, templates, worksheets, flashcards, etc. They sell indefinitely and boost student learning and your income. You can also sell some materials to other educators as well.
20. Rent on Airbnb
Airbnb is a platform for peer-to-peer short-term room rental services. This is a fancy way of saying that you can rent your room on the platform.
Some people do not like hotels because it does not feel like home. Others simply choose Airbnb because it is cheaper. You only need a vacant room to start. So, Airbnb is a good source of passive income.
An average Airbnb host makes about $924 per month. But how much you actually earn can vary depending on how frequently you rent out our place, the quality of your accommodation, and the services you provide.
Level of Expertise
You do not need a degree to be an Airbnb host. If you want to offer a truly local experience, you need to be familiar with the local culture.
What You Need to Know About Renting on Airbnb
There are many ways to make money on Airbnb. Let’s start with the traditional method first: becoming a host.
First, make sure that you can list your space in the first place. Get permission from your co-op board, homeowners association, or landlord, if relevant.
From there, you need to touch up your Airbnb space. Whether it is a single room, a private wing, or an entire home, you want to make sure it looks good. Here are a few ideas:
- Install a keyless lock
- Make the space comfortable by installing a fridge or a microwave
- Put up a wall to close off a room
- Create a television area
- Stock the space with towels, toilet paper, and clean sheets
- Provide cleaning services between reservations
- Cover taxes as well as Airbnb host fee
Next, think about the price. Strike that balance between affordability, audience, and market. Here’s what it looks like:
- Airbnb usually takes 3% of the total booking fee. If you are an Airbnb Plus host, list your property in Italy, or have a very strict cancellation policy, the fee is higher. What guests see on the price is higher than the one you set to account for Airbnb’s cut.
- Airbnb’s metrics show how your prices compare to others in the area. You can, and should, change them depending on the circumstance. When there is a surge in demand, ask for more. Do the same if you have to accommodate more guests or have to provide additional services.
- Airbnb charges guests before arrival and sends you the cash 24 hours after check-in. You can only get money through PayPal, Google Pay, Apple Pay, debit cards, Discover, American Express, Master Card, and Visa.
- How much money you make also depends on other factors such as VAT, co-hosts you enlist, weekly or monthly discounts, etc.
When it comes to listing your space, here are a few tips:
- Highlight what makes your space special to stand out from others
- Mention accessibility features that can help guests get around your place
- Upload great photos to give guests an idea of what to expect
But that is not the only way to make money on Airbnb. I’ll give you a few other ideas:
- Airbnb rental arbitrage: Basically, you rent a property and sublet it to other people. Other than the legality of this business model (some cities do not allow this) you need to make sure that the money you make is more than your rent and other business expenses.
- Become a rental property manager: Your job as a rental property manager is to manage the needs of property owners, communicate with guests, confirm bookings, and inspect properties, among other things. Some people have more than one property and they list them all on Airbnb, so they need someone to keep an eye on things. Make sure you meet the legal requirements of your state first.
- Co-host: Your responsibilities as a co-host are similar to that of a rental property manager. The major difference is that you act like an assistant to the host. Co-hosting is a good idea if you are new to this industry.
- Airbnb Experience: You can host as an Airbnb experience, which is basically a tour guide service. Your job here is to provide guests with hyper-local activities such as yoga under the Eiffel Tower. Submit an application to Airbnb and they will determine if you are a good fit.
21. Get Paid to Watch Videos
Many websites pay you to watch videos, ads, previews, and other content.
As you might suspect, an easy job like this does not pay well. Still, I put it on the list because it is a nice way to make a buck or two on the side.
If you watch ads consistently, you can bring about $100 or more per month. That is not a lot, but it is a very easy job.
Consider this something you can do when you have a bit of free time to supplement your income.
I do not recommend doing this as a full-time job at all since it pays very little.
Level of Expertise
You do not need formal education for this. You just need to have a computer, laptop, or smartphone and an internet connection and you are good to go.
What You Need to Know About Paid Videos
To begin, you just need to sign up on websites that pay you to watch videos. Here are five of them:
- Swagbucks: They have ads, new content, and viral videos. They also have surveys.
- InboxPounds: Similar to Swagbucks. They also pay you to read their deals emails, surf the web, or look up things on their search page.
- WeAre8: It is an app with a nice feature. You can forward your earing to a charity of your choice.
- Netflix: Netflix needs people to watch movies and TV shows and then assign appropriate tags. That way, their customers can get accurate results. Check their websites for such an opportunity.
- GrabPoints: They pay you in the form of gift cards and PayPal cash not just for watching videos, but for many other online activities as well.
22. Affiliate Marketing
You make money via affiliate marketing by promoting other people’s products and services.
This usually comes in the form of a special link or code. When your audience makes a purchase through the link or code, you get a cut of the sale.
Affiliate marketers make on average $65,800 annually. If you start from scratch, it might take a while to get there.
Level of Expertise
Whether or not should you have a formal education depends on the content you produce. There is no formal education requirement for affiliate marketers.
What You Need to Know About Affiliate Marketing
There are two main things you need to begin making money with affiliate marketing. You need affiliate products or services to promote and a place to do it. Let’s start with the latter.
First, you need a website or a social media page.
That means your blog site, Facebook page, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok, etc. I already covered that extensively in the article, so we will skim past that and go to the good bit: the affiliate part.
After you have a sizable following, it is time to reap the fruit of your labor and monetize your content. One way to do it is through an affiliate program. You can join an affiliate network to do this. It is a network of merchants and affiliate marketers. Here are a few you can check out:
- Amazon Associates
- CJ Affiliate
One of the best things about joining an affiliate network is that you have access to crucial data on how well certain products sell. You can then use that to change your affiliate strategy.
Speaking of which, here are a few tips to help maximize your income:
- Content: Pair affiliate products or services with high-quality content. Your audience comes to you for recommendations, so by making high-quality content, not only do you seem credible, but it also increases the likelihood of them purchasing you. It is a win-win.
- Links: Use them strategically. Only put them where appropriate and as early as possible. For instance, if you review multiple products, put the links to those at the top of the list. Sometimes, people do not want to sit through your explanations and just want the TL; DR (too long, didn`t read).
- Use your site’s space: Utilize inline banners, floating bars, and sidebar widgets to promote affiliate products. You can do all of that through an affiliate link plugin for your site.
On top of this, I want to talk about how the Pareto Principle applies to affiliate marketing.
80% of your profit comes from 20% of your content, roughly speaking.
That means, one way to maximize your revenue is by identifying the highest converting content.
From there, make it a priority for affiliate campaigns. You can get such performance data from Google Analytics or from the affiliate network dashboard itself.
Also, more traffic does not always mean more affiliate customers. Increase your revenue by converting visitors into affiliate customers.
You can do this by creating a popup campaign that promotes the product. It grabs attention and with the right message to the right people, it is super effective.
Alternatively, you can have the popup show at the right time, usually at the end of the article/content or when your audience is about to leave.
Email marketing is still very powerful. So, if you have an email list, use that to promote your affiliate products and services.
No amount of SEO optimization can beat direct email, after all. Plus, it is full of people who are already engaged with your content, so your affiliate marketing would be far more effective.
The trick is to get people to give them their email, so you need to incentivize them by giving them exclusive content, downloadable templates, etc.
If you love to read and have a knack for reading out loud, it is very easy to become an audiobook narrator.
Yes, it takes a few hours to put together a high-quality audiobook, but you can make a lot more money in the long run. People listen to audiobooks on the way to work or when they cannot sit down to read a book, but want to go through one anyway.
The market is growing rapidly, making it one of the best sources of passive income.
If you work as an audiobook narrator, you can expect to make between $10 to $50 an hour. If you have a bit of experience and recognition, you can earn from $100 to $500 per hour.
Level of Expertise
If you want to be an audiobook narrator, all you need is a good and quiet environment to record your reading. If you want to make audiobooks by yourself, you need to have a flair for writing first.
What You Need to Know About Audiobooks
There are two ways to do this. You can read other people’s books, or you can read your own.
If you want to start making money immediately, the second option is the best since you can make more money. This is because the revenue goes directly to you, and it is recurring.
But this can take some time since you need to create content on your own. If you do not have an audience or a website already, starting from scratch will be difficult and take some time.
You can sell your audiobooks on your website, Awesound, or ACX. Keep in mind that these websites take a cut so selling on your website can be more profitable.
If you decide to go this route, make sure you research the market well.
Go to Amazon.com and Audible and look for a niche with few results. That is an opportunity to capitalize on.
Of course, you also need to be passionate about that niche as well. From there, you just need to put together your content and narrate it yourself or hire someone else to do it for you.
Alternatively, you can narrate other people’s books. The rate can be hourly or flat and this will not be a recurring payment for subsequent sales of the audiobook. You need to prove yourself as an experienced audiobook narrator before you can ask for royalty shares, which is a recurring income.
Fiverr.com or other freelancing sites should have plenty of job listings for a book narrator you can sign up for.
If you decide to go this route, take a look around first. See what your competition is doing by checking out their profiles.
Look at how they present themselves and try to replicate that on your profile. Have a compelling title, description, and good audio samples.
On top of that, here are a few pro tips for aspiring audiobook narrators:
- Invest in a good microphone
- Stand up when you read to open your diaphragm and improve the sound quality
- Avoid coffee and drink a glass of water 30 minutes before you start
- Do not use a monotonous voice but do not overdo the intonations
- Maintain a good posture when reading
- Don’t forget to promote your work on social media to expand your reach
24. Sell Stock Photos
Marketing and design professionals need fresh images. They do not want to invest a lot of money in setting up a photo production facility for a one-off thing.
Instead, they just buy photos from stock content platforms such as Shutterstock, Pexels, iStockphoto, etc.
- Stock photographers earn on average $0.02 per image per month.
- Royalty-free photographs can go for anywhere from $.010 to $99.50, and extended licenses can net you $500.
- Stock photo agencies pay on average $0.32 per sale of royalty-free license.
Level of Expertise
Again, you do not need a formal education. You just need to know your way around a camera to frame that perfect shot as well as post-production techniques.
What You Need to Know About Stock Photography
All you need to do is sign up on those platforms and you can start selling your photos. Before you get there, I’ll give you a few tips to maximize your income:
- Pick several topics to focus on: Safe options include lifestyle, nature, and architecture
- Keep up with the trend: Interests tend to shift now and again, so make sure you keep up-to-date. That includes the latest color, post-production techniques, and photography trends.
- Tags: Use them to help people discover your work easily.
- Seasonal demands: People will want to buy Christmas photos around Christmas, so capitalize on seasonal trends. Prepare photos in advance and upload them before the trend hits.
Just make sure that you do not run into copyright infringement problems. This is important if you want to sell stock photos. They must not contain any logos or brands. Commercial photos do not have them.
With those logos, you would need to ask for permission from the brands or companies, which is difficult. The safer method is to remove those from your photos instead.
So, what platforms should you sign up for? All of them, ideally. You can sell stock photos on multiple websites. Just make sure that if you sell the exclusive rights to a certain photo, you cannot do it elsewhere with the same photo. Here is a short list of websites to sell your stock photo:
|Agency||Min. Payment||Max. Payment||Extended License|
|Adobe Stock & Fotolia||$0.33||$3.30||$26.40|
|iStock & GettyImages||$0.10||$16.20||$113.40|
A glance at the chart will tell you that Stocksy and Alamy are the best way to go. However, you need to understand that both of these websites do not sell nearly as many images as Shutterstock, for example.
So, you can earn more at Shutterstock simply because you sell more photos there.
25. Create Online Courses
Selling online courses is one of the best sources of passive income. There are always people, young and old, who want to learn something new.
And maybe you have some wisdom to share, so why not capitalize on it?
You can make between $1,000 to $100,000 or more per year.
Level of Expertise
Depending on what course you plan to sell, having a formal education can go a long way in making you look credible.
Regardless, you need to be an expert in that specific field, and you need something to show for it.
Other than that, you just need a computer, a microphone, a camera, an internet connection, and screen recording software to record your lessons.
What You Need to Know About Online Courses
Before you start recording your lessons, plan ahead.
First, pick your niche. What are you good at? Can you make lessons out of it? What problems will your course resolve?
Other than that, look at trending topics and issues in your field to give you a few more ideas. Make sure that your course idea is in demand.
From there, pick a selling platform. Consider Udemy, Thinkific, Teachable, Skillshare, and Podia. You need to do a bit of digging here to find the right platform for you.
When you have an account set up on your platform, upload your work. To make your course more compelling, you need to spend some time writing the description.
Understand what problems your customers want to solve and be as specific as possible. Then, mention that you have a solution or benefits that they want. When it comes to price, look at your competitors for pricing ideas.
Then, it is time to promote your course. Use every means accessible to you. Post on social media, on your blog site, on LinkedIn, and through your email list if you have it.
26. Stream on Spotify
Artists and producers come together to make the best audio content on the internet. You can find all of that on Spotify. You get monthly payments according to how many views your work accumulated in the past month.
The basic strategy is:
- Create an attention-grabbing profile that lets others know about your work
- Publish your audio content
- Use Spotify’s suite of tools and opportunities to build your audience
- Market your content through social media and other online platforms
How much money you earn depends on the number of monthly views.
The payments vary from $0.0033 to $0.0054. How much you earn depends on the activity and how much of it is your own.
To give you an idea, you will earn anywhere from $3 to $5 per 1,000 views. A million views should net you $3,300 to $3,500. I also want to point out that a view only counts when they listen for at least 30 seconds.
I should mention that it is not as simple as uploading a YouTube video, however. The revenue goes to three main parties: the rights holders, the distributor, and the artist, in that order.
Independent artists and their managers usually use Distrokid or Tunecore to get their work on Spotify. More popular artists usually go through an in-house process via major labels.
Level of Expertise
Being a savvy businessperson as well as a skillful artist goes a long way. Not only do you need to make good music, but you also need to present yourself properly as well. I will cover a few tips to make your profile stand out below.
What You Need to Know About Streaming on Spotify
When you are starting out, you might not earn a lot of money. It takes time to build up an audience and real effort to ensure that they keep coming back. I’ll give you a few tips:
- Mind the bio: You might want to create your profile quickly so you can upload your work. But an eye-catching bio can bring in more listeners from the get-go. Make sure you concisely describe yourself in 1,500 characters, the kind of music you want to share, tags to link you to other artists and playlists, and links to your social media.
- Make a playlist: You do not need to make music to earn money on Spotify. You can also make money as a playlist curator. Just make sure you put together hard-to-find songs as well as top-rated songs in your playlists and promote your playlist on social media. There is also the Spotify Community’s Playlist Exchange where you can submit your collection. You make money via ads, but try to keep it low to not annoy listeners.
- Pitch a Song: This feature allows you to introduce an unpublished song that you think is worth featuring. If it makes the list, you will see it in the editors’ playlist which is a powerful way to expand your reach.
And there you have it. There are many more ways to make money, but these are the most effective right now. When it comes to moneymaking online, the sky is the limit, so get creative! With a bit of know-how and luck, you can be financially independent.