Here is a list of passive income ideas in hope to inspire you to help you get started on your own profitable and passionate niche.
There are many ways to make money online but FIRST it is important for yourself to identity what is your profitable passion.
Knowing your passion would help yourself discover how you can make money online while seeing yourself enjoying what you are doing. Furthermore, you will then have the dedication and motivation to move forward in lifelong learning to grow your online business into a passive income for the next 5 years or more. Otherwise, you will find yourself tired and quit at anytime.
In this modern digital world, it is only passive income that allow you to enjoy financial freedom and time freedom. As making money online does not necessary mean you will achieve time freedom, you will need to discover how you can turn your online business to a passive income idea.
So what is Passive Income?
Passive income is an income you earned in regular basis, with little effort required to earn that revenue.
Example: Investing in a stock market or collecting monthly house rental fees.
In view of the best passive income idea, the below in no particular order are the best ways to make money online based on my own opinion.
1. WEBSITE AND BLOG
Before I begin, please note that website and blog are correlated.
You can read more here if you don’t.
I will assume that you already have something in mind on what is your “Profitable Niche” you want to work on before you start a website.
And because we are talking about looking for ways to make passive income online, having a website will become your ESSENTIAL PILLAR to build your ASSET to make money online.
A Website required less effort to run rather than a blog since a blog required having fresh content to the reader almost every few days or so. Take the website www.Apple.com as an example, the page: Apple info, site map, contact us is consider a static and formal page that does not involve any interaction (one way communication. If you are planning to start an E-commerce site, you will definitely need a website.
Blogging is not the fastest way to help you make million but it is something worth considering having. Blogging allows you to share updated news and information; it allows you to communicate with your customer to form a loyal reader and community, to educate or to send promotion announcement to your potential customer. When you start engaging with your reader and share updated news frequently, they will start to treat you like an expert and feels that you are a real authentic person. This is when you will gain the credibility and add to your personal or business brand equity.
You might not have realized it, but we are all a brand. Branding does not belong to big name companies or celebrities. Branding is how you package a product or yourself and with that authority, you will find yourself easier to influence other to buy from you. Furthermore, you will attract lots of honey and bees from advertiser, sponsorship or even be invited to speak for some event. There’s a lot more opportunities waiting…
If you are serious about starting a website and a blog, please avoid hosting your blog FREE (yoursite.wordpress.com).
You will need your own hosting and domain name (yoursite.com).
How exactly do you make money from your website and blog?
These are some examples of how people make money online with their website.
1. Buy and sell a product
2. Sell your own product or service
3. Affiliate (Promoting someone else’ product or service)
4. Advertisement (Banner ads, Classified ads or in-text ads etc)
5. Sell your website once it is popular (Sell at auction sites like Flippa once you build a well established site.)
6. Membership Website
7. Coaching workshop or classes
2. AFFILIATE MARKETING
When you first start to blog, more often you will find yourself with no product or probably just a few product and services to sell, in this scenario, you can explore joining as an affiliate. Affiliate is highly recommended for anyone who just started off and also for someone who has little capital in starting an online business. It is also the fastest way to start making money rather than waiting and making your own product…
So what is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is everything about relationships. A relationship between three parties:
The simplest way to explain affiliate marketing is, you as a PUBLISHER make money online by helping and promoting a BUSINESS product or service to the end CONSUMER.
So your job as an affiliate is the middleman to bring the consumer and business together by “aligning” the products the consumer is looking for.
There are a number of ways, you as a publisher can promote it for the business. In most cases, the publisher promotes it through their website and blog. But do note that the conversion is only complete, and can be track by the business when the consumer click on your “Unique link” given.
So if you want to promote it on your website or blog, you need to have 2 things:
A website that contains valuable information and the affiliate’s unique link or banner. In summary, you need to drive traffic; get people to your website, convince them or influence them to take action to complete the transaction.
As mentioned, you will be assigned with an unique link which you are suppose to place it on your website. But have you wondered how does it work when the consumer click on the unique link? That’s because of cookie. They are not edible though. Nope, not that type of cookie you eat during your high tea.
What is Cookie?
Simply explained, cookie is information that a website puts on your hard disk so that it can remember at a later time. They can store information like your login ID, shopping cart items and personal particular like address, telephone number and so on.
Can you recall that certain website opted- in to have your “remember” your username and password when you try to login to your account? That is cookie. Ever notice that after searching for “Getaways deals” and you will start seeing other travel deals advertisement while browsing for other websites? That’s because you have been cookified. Its mechanism allows your computer server to store information on your computer which records your preference. How smart is cookie!
In affiliate marketing, cookies play a role such that it manage and remember the link or ad whenever the visitor clicks on from the website. They can store information like the date and time when you click on it and what kind of information you are usually searching for,
Pretty amazing ah? and when someone click on the “Unique link” on your site. The cookie will remained in their hard disk for 30-90 days depending on what merchant you are promoting on behalf of. And within the time frame, if they made a purchase… you will earn the commission. Some of the commission can be as high as 75%.
As mentioned, making your own product takes time so it would be better off to start by promoting as an affiliate. And over the time once you have completed your own product, you can replace your own product with the existing affiliate product you are promoting. This way you don’t get 50% or 75% commission but 100% instantly.
Some of the popular affiliate network which are free to join are Clickbank, CJ, JVzoo and Amazon. You can find many products and service within your niches there…
3. EMAIL LIST
Email marketing is said to be the best and most effective marketing strategy to make money because the email list you generated are your own list (your asset), and the best thing is, you will have higher ROIs since you don’t have to pay for any advertisement cost. This is the reason why people like to describe that their email list is their asset, their cash machine.. because they simply click the email send button, sit back, relax and wait for their money to flow into their account.
To do this, of course you would need to have a website or landing page that has a subscribe field box in order to start collecting email addresses. Once they subscribe to your email list, you can then start to communicate, engage with your potential customer (also known as leads) and to send promotional email.
However, when your subscriber list are getting bigger, you will need to have an Autoresponder to manage the hundreds or thousands of subscriber. An Autoresponder is an automated service that helps you send out a sequence of messages to your subscribers in the order sequence that you have pre-written.
Example, when someone subscribe to your website, they will received an automated welcome email message that you have pre-written. Depending on how many pre-written email message you wrote and when you want them to received, let say you want your reader to recieve your email every alternate day for 2 weeks… you pre-write it and your autoresponder will send it on your behalf. And you only have to write the email once and it will be send automatically to all your subscribers.
How cool was that? You save tons of time engaging with them….
4. DIGITAL BOOKS
Do you realized most of the professional and gurus have their book published?
This is because there are many great opportunities when you create and publish your own digital books online. With the internet, books no longer has to be physical. People love to learn new knowledge and they accept to go paperless and buy digital books.
If you have the knowledge and skill, express yourself, make your voice heard by teaching someone. If you notice, even celebrities are writing their own books because it helps to enhance their personal branding. With so many information found online, the only way you can make yourself stand out is to publish your own digital book. It allows yourself to be seen as an expert in your audience’s eye which help you to gain the authority and credibility in your own niche overtime. Thus, allowing you to sell more product or services in future when you recommend some great product to your readers.
However, having said this, if you want to brand yourself, it is important to start off by introducing yourself with an impact story on your very FIRST book launched before you start sharing any knowledge; the first few books your reader will be reading (Free Ebook download for subscriber and first Ebook launched). The reason behind is they may not know about you so you need to build a rapport with your reader and let them know who you are, how you started off, how your knowledge has help you and how you want to help them etc. If possible, take a professional photoshoot of yourself and include them in all the books you plan to publish in future, be it on the main cover or inside of the book. The photo of yourself will act like a company logo which enable your reader to identify you as an authority and credibility person going forward.
Sure, you can create and include a business logo in your book but ultimately, the greatest impact to build yourself as an authority person is to have your picture included in your own book, because it shows that you are a real person with high confidence level, genuine in sharing knowledge with your readers.
and for maximum impact, you probably realized that it is also best if you can add your photo on your website to achieved the greater personal branding effect…
Back to the topic on digital Ebook…
If you have a website, you can fully utilized your own website platform to sell your digital Ebooks there as it will allow you to achieved close to 100% profits. If you don’t own any website, you can consider to publish it at Amazon as Kindle or physical book but Amazon will take a cut of the commission. However, if you have a fresh new website with not much traffic yet, it is wiser to publish your digital Ebook on amazon instead.
The greatest benefit of publishing your own digital book is that you only have to write it once, published it and grow it with little capital involved. How passive!
5. DROP SHIPPING
I have a few girl friends who told me that they can’t write and they never consider themselves as an expert in any topic. Some of them are stay at home mummy and most of them loves shopping so they are constantly discussing about importing products in to sell instead.
However selling physical product is never easy and profitable as it used to be. You have to handle and worry about the inventory availability, warehousing costs, labour cost in packing and delivery…
and that is when I advice them that many businesses has jump into drop shipping bandwagon.
The potential of earning higher revenue, no inventory, warehousing cost and little liability pose more interest for my friends as a stay at home mum or as an entrepreneur into drop shipping business- A great profitable business model for buying and selling. They are glad to learn about this as they have not heard about drop shipping business model before….
So what is Drop Shipping?
Drop shipping is a supply chain management technique which you as a retailer do not keep the goods in stock but instead your manufacturer or wholesaler will deliver to your customer on your behalf. It brings so much convenience and less hassle to sell a product.
If you are keen in doing drop shipping, I highly recommend using SaleHoo to source for your products. It is a platform where it allows you to find the most profitable thing to sell on eBay or Amazon. The coolest thing is you can access to their legitimate and low cost wholesale suppliers directory. They have good and trustworthy suppliers and you are safe and protected for being scammed by fake brand in other China wholesale directory.
Or rather if you want to hear more concept of how it works, I would advice you to get the book “The 4-hour Workweek” from author Tim Ferris. It is a well written, a bit witty story and highly recommended book for any entrepreneur who wants to create an automated business to achieve financial freedom and time freedom.
If you are interested or is already in a E-commerce business, such as selling apparel or accessories in a traditional brick and mortar business, but realized that your business growth has been stagnate for a while. It’s time to review what is your unique proposition or expand your business online… with some creativity juice, you may want to bundle up your products or services and sell it to your target audience. People love customized products or additional service and they are more than willingly to pay for it because they really need.
In the recent months, I have seen more and more companies offering such a product and service customized for their client because of the demand. With the unique proposition, it allows their brand and offer to be serve in a niche that people have been neglected on.
However, when you are selling a wide ranges of products with your own brand or label like maybe over 50 products, it is essential for you to set up a shop platform with Shopify rather than creating a website using WordPress and then find yourself purchasing WooCommerce theme or plugins for your online store. The latter is much more expensive, time consuming and hassle and requires some design skills to build an attractive website.
With Shopify, you will get the features you need depending on the plan you chose. They provide several templates to meet individual users’s design preference or requirements. And I must say that it really save you a lot of time and minimize your workload. The idea is it allows you to fully focus on selling and marketing your product because it help you to keep track on your stock availability which means you can place an order once your stocks are running out.
7. HIGH TICKET SALE
People have been telling me that it takes the same effort and time to sell something which is why it left many people looking for high ticket items to sell. However, there are some people who feels that it is not easy to sell high ticket sale item because more than often you will need to have the credibility or influential power in order to do that.
But the thing is that there are a portion of people who love your product and they are willingly to pay for your product or service. So there is nothing to worry of… let me give you some great tips.
● Once you know your profitable niche, do your research and see if there is any offering in Amazon that are high ticket sale items in your niche, aim for at least $500 priced item because Amazon takes a bulk of the cut when you sell as an Affiliate. The easiest way to promote it is to write reviews and comparison articles of various Amazon products on your niche.
Example: High ticket sale products found in Amazon are jewelry, watch, music instruments, appliances etc.
● People will not buy a thousand dollar item from you when they first met you. Because they don’t know about you and they are skeptical about your offering. The best way to cross over the bridge is to offer your audience a bait, a FREE offer (Trial, sample, Ebooks etc) that allows them to try your product and slowly walking up the sales funnel of yours.
● Understand psychological selling and learn persuasive selling writing. If you are selling high ticket sale item, it is crucial that whatever you sell is convincing enough for people to take action. Sounds clear? But let me tell you… there are many people I known who did a pretty bad job in their sales speech or marketing writing. If you think you does a pretty bad job, hire someone to do it for you at Fiverr or learn it yourself.
● Consider structuring your business products and services in a way that allows you to earn 2-3 times more than you can get by looking into your sales funnel. People love to pay when they really love your product no matter how much it is. For instance, for the same product info, when packaged differently, it would allows you to sell it at different price. So a person who first purchase your E-book at $25 would probably end up purchasing your home study course for $97 and probably purchased the 1 day workshop $300 when you promoted it and because they really enjoy your product, they would purchase your higher end ticket personal coaching program for $3000. That is a $3422 customer lifetime value (CLV).
Home study course: $97
1 day Workshop: $300
Personal coaching program: $3,000
If you are a professional photographer or think that you have the talent in taking pictures, don’t let what you had took be a waste. You can submit your work right away by licensing them at a royalty free stock images and get paid for a small fee when someone download your photo. Some of the recommended stock image company you can submit your work to are Gettyimage, Shutterstock and Bigstock.
You might be wondering who will buy these pictures. Well, there are people who need pictures for their website and there are marketing firms who are in need of suitable pictures to design their advertisement for their clients. So if you are creative enough, you can start you own lucrative portfolio by joining royalty free stock images now.
Alternatively, you can also create a website, blog or community to teach people who like photography, monetize using Adsense for a start or selling affiliate products or service such as promoting other people’s photography training courses. When the traffic is good, you may attract more advertiser and sponsors (Probably Canon, Sony, Olympus etc) to replace your Adsense ads and if you have the time or money, you can create your own e-books to sell.
Darren Rowse is one of those who have built a wealth from his Digital Photography School.
If you are serious in building a blog, I highly recommend reading his “ProBlogger” book as he is using Digital Photography School as an example in his book. There are a lot of insight tips which you don’t want to miss out which you can kill two bird with one stone.
If you have the talent in playing any of the music instruments, you can make your music heard and get paid by various ways.
You can record yourself playing the instruments and made yourself a Youtube star. You will only get paid when someone click on the Ads shown around your video, but before you do that you need to enable the setting by going to monetization under channel setting. If you already have a website, let say on guitar lesson, you can even link to your website to gain more traffic and probably earn more revenue from there.
If you are those who are camera shy and don’t like to get the frame in Youtube etc, you can record your own music and become a contributor at royalty stock images sites such as Shutterstock, Istock or 123RF. Similar to photography licensing program that you joined, you will get paid each time someone download your music for use in commercial or TV programs etc.
Otherwise you can consider creating a blog to teach people how to play the music instrument. At this stage, you can monetize by placing Adsense first, recommend and providing various review on the music instrument by doing Amazon Affiliate from here since music instruments are pretty high ticket sale product. Or rather, if you want, you can create a membership website where people subscribe to for a monthly fee to learn online guitar lesson.
7. GRAPHIC DESIGN
If you are a graphic designer or someone who is just very good at using Adobe illustrator or Photoshop. You could design some graphics, templates, website button or banner and submit your work to royalty stock image sites such as Dreamstime and Graphicstock. Each time someone use your graphic, you will get paid.
Another suggestion is… since creating the graphics take place at Illustrator or Photoshop, you might want to consider doing a screen capture recording video (Recommend: Camtasia record) to create a tutorial and teach people how to use Illustrator or Photoshop. You could then include your site’s link at each end of the video and upload it to Youtube so people who are interested in learning more can visit your website. Yes, you need a website so you can make them subscribe to your newsletter. This way, not only can you increase your site’s traffic but at the same time allowing you to engage with them to promote your stuff when you have any in future.
Subsequently, you can make a more advanced tutorial video course for your membership who pay for a monthly/yearly subscription fee or if you are interested, you can create your own e-books to sell at your site.
Of course, when your sites gain the popularity, you will attract more advertisers which you can consider having advertising revenue but do take precautions in placing relevant ads to your niche. You don’t want to leave any bad impression to your reader, do you?
8. MOBILE APPS
If you have some skill in programming, Java or html, you probably want to consider creating apps for Apples ISO devices, Google or Microsoft.
With the increase in smartphone user over the last few years, the demand for mobile apps has rise sharply which provide immense potential way to earn money and accordingly to Forbes, Android wins over Apples on the number of downloads per app but is largely trade off by significant lower revenue, with around 2 cents revenue per download for its Android developer and 10 cents for Apple developer. However, the remarkable thing is that Microsoft developer earns more substantial revenue per download at 15 cents. Goggle has 60,000 number of download per apps, while Apple has 40,000 and Microsoft 4,062.
If you want to create Apples ISO, you would need to register as an Apple developer and download Xcode from Apple developer website. Do note that you need to purchase an annual developer license cost at $99 before you can submit your application to Applestore for review process. Find out more here.
In order to publish apps through Android Playstore, you simply need to create a account with a fee of $25. Do note that you would need to create the apps with different tools namely Java development kit and Androib SDK/ADt. Find out more here and here.
Of course the apps you created must add value to your user, otherwise no one will search for the apps in the first place.
You can choose to monetize by offering Paid apps or Free apps using 1) Freemium models which means the user has to pay for the apps to unlock and get access for the complete version. Alternatively, you can offer 2) Subscriptions apps such as newspaper and magazine subscription stand or 3) Mobile advertising, which is the most widely used monetization model. You simply add the banners within your apps.
If you like to write and is really good at it, I would highly recommend you to find a profitable niche and start a blog. You could start by writing your own e-books and published it at Amazon’s Kindle or Clickbank and if you are keen, offering freelance writing at Elance or Odesk, or sell your course on Udemy might be a good idea too.
Doing freelance writing or blogging for someone might not be a passive income but it will help you build up your reputation since it provides social proof. This in turn will greatly help out when you publish your own books or when you sell your own course in the future.
Another place for you to build up your reputation and earn a reasonable income is to submit your original articles at popular sites like Hubpages.com.
Ads such as Adsense or Hubpages Ads will assign Ads related to what you have written and posted. And once you generate a minimum amount from the Ads, you would then be able to cash out your earning. Other similar sites to consider are infobarrel, Yahoo contributor network and Digital Journal.
Bear in mind that besides writing quality contents, you need to supply your reader with a valuable advice and information. Many clients would expect to have their article written for search engine optimization (SEO) purpose. This means writing contents that allows their sites visibility in an organic search engine. In short, to allow their web page to rank higher in the search result page so as to generate more traffic, with more visitor to visit their site. So if you want to write for blog entry, you may want to consider learning some fundamental of SEO.
MAKE IT HAPPEN
Yes, I understand that you have your own set of expertise and knowledge and there is no doubt that you would encounter some hiccups here and there and get stuck at some steps. If you may not have the time or skill to do a task well, don’t be fret and get intimated over the issue.
Just ask around in the Facebook group you joined; like minded people are around or hire someone else from Fiverr, 99 Designs, Elance, Upwork (Formly Odesk) etc to complete the task for you.
Here you can find the Resources in helping you out to build your business empire.
If you have realized, almost all the ideas I mentioned revolves around to have a website/blog, otherwise you will not be able to communicate and promote your product or services to your customers. Moreover, there is no other excuses for you to refuse to have a website since building a website is relatively cheap: Read more here.