Whether it’s an important consumer application, a specialist app to solve a particular niche problem, or even a time-wasting game you can play on your phone, you can create a massively successful business if you build software that helps people. (Look at the rise of Slack—the team communication software that went from side project to billion-dollar company in just 2 years.)
While some might think that starting a blog is an arduous effort, when you understand the precise steps you need to take, it becomes far easier. It all starts in the decision of choosing a profitable niche and picking the right domain name. From there, you need to build your offers. You can easily sell things like mini-email courses, trainings and ebooks.
So, where are we supposed to turn to make money the legitimate way online? This isn't just about generating passive income; this is also about finding ways and means to create an active income through the conveniences afforded to us by the internet that will not only help us with our debt obligations, but also empower us to save, invest and get really rich in the future.
In 2017, there were almost 90 million pet dogs in the US. Which has opened up a huge opportunity to make money online as a dog watcher or sitter. Specialized sites like Rover or Care.com connect pet owners with pet walkers, sitters, and boarding houses to help look after their best friends when they’re at work or on a trip. If you’re an animal lover, you can make extra money and get to spend some quality time with a furry friend.
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If you list your offer in the right places you’ll get emails. For every 10 emails my friend got he closed on 3 of them. That’s a great close rate, but the email replies are very targeted. For video testimonials my friend was able to collect the sale money up front because he told people he has to pay his actors up front. $20 is not a big outlay for people to make so most people won’t have a problem with it. And once you start to earn some money I’d recommend buying yourself a domain and putting up a basic website that you can direct people to in order to give yourself credibility.
I launched my own online marketing agency in 2010, but I didn’t launch a real online product until a few months ago (Millennial Money Course). My co-creator Matt and I had a phenomenal 5 figure launch the first few days (and we launched on a holiday weekend because we wanted to control the sign ups). Putting together the course was an insane amount of work, but the best thing about creating a digital product is that you only have to create it once and then you can keep selling it. There are some people, like my fellow personal finance blogger Michelle, who absolutely kills it selling online courses – she makes over $100,000 a month on her course! Insane.
What a huge, great list of ideas – bookmarked this as I know I’ll be coming back to go over it again and again. Here’s another item that could have made the list. I found a financial directory that’s useful for info on making money online. It’s http://money.madbeetech.com. What I like about it is that each directory listing includes ebooks and videos that can be instantly downloaded. All sorts of stuff for people who have their own website, and people who don’t (but still want to make money online).
Research individual companies in your desired niche: If possible, it’s always better to become an affiliate directly with a company (if they have an internal affiliate program), as no one else will be dipping into your commission rate. This is the preferred route for most of the prominent affiliate marketers, including Pat Flynn. Unfortunately, it’s also the most work, as you’ll have to do the research yourself to see who offers programs (they’re usually listed in the website footer).
Take good pictures. Some of the options below don’t require you to actually take the picture and sell the product, but for the ones that do, make sure you take a clear picture that makes your product stand out from the others. If you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures, set up a small “studio-like” area in your home with a backdrop and proper lighting to really make your pictures come across as professional. And of course, you’ll want a good camera too.
In a few cases, like with the headphones company, I was able to maximize my value by negotiating a deal where I got paid based on the amount of profit I was able to drive – which with this one client was insane. I got 20% of the profit that I drove that was directly attributable to the digital marketing campaigns that I was running. I knew that I was going to crush it, so I spent extra time up front making sure that the contract I had him sign covered a ton of scenarios. While I tried to make the case, which was true, that my strategy would help increase sales over at least the next 2+ years, the owner of the company would only sign on for 6 months.
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An easy job; doesn’t pay well, but also a quick way to make some money. Sign up on eLance or oDesk to start, and/or advertise your services in entrepreneur forums. Requires good hearing and a good command of the English language. You may also want to invest in a foot pedal if you plan to transcribe often. Make sure you know how to transcribe interviews before you start your first job.
And you know what happened? Yup, I crushed it and ended up selling over $2.5 million in headphones in that 6 month period for the owner and my cut of the profit was $200,000. Not bad for 6 months of work that didn’t really take much time. Unfortunately, even though I crushed it for him, the owner didn’t end up renewing my contract. He thought he could do what I was doing. I was so pissed. I’d made a rookie mistake when I was excited one day and showed him how part of the campaigns worked.
25. Products – You can create your own product, such as an ebook or computer software. You would then use your blog as a promotion tool to get people to buy your product. As long as you create a legitimate product with a whole lot of value, you should be able to get some buyers, but like everything else with a blog, you’ll need the traffic to get the sells.
Open Yale Courses echoes Harvard Extension and Stanford Online, in that it offers only courses from Yale. While the site is similarly limited to topics taught at the school, Open Yale Courses offers a lot of videos of actual campus lectures. The availability of videos makes the site a great option if you’re looking for quality courses, but learn better by watching than by reading.
Great post! Thanks for the insight into your financial empire. That's awesome you made $200,000 by negotiating a percent of he profit on headphone sales! I can't imagine how infuriating that would be to have a client let you go and use your models. Facebook ads are definitely hard to use. I've never done taken an online course. None of them seem legit. Mostly been trying to wing it. What would you recommend to learn how to use Facebook or google ads effectively?
Also, some of them are deceptively simple. For instance, let’s say you spend 40 hours this month learning keyword research and posting 30 how to articles on eHow. And you make $20. You may think, “Wow, fifty cents an hour. What a waste of my time.” Except, next month, after the articles settle higher in Google, you make $40. A year from now, having done nothing else, you are making $100-$150/month. And assuming Google doesn’t change their rules, you should continue receiving checks for years with no additional work.