It’s truly a great time to be a work-from-home entrepreneur. The internet has opened up side-hustle and income opportunities never dreamed possible just a couple decades ago.
Everyone’s looking for that easy online income idea, but the truth is that making money online is a business just like any other. Being successful in any of these opportunities means cutting through the myth of online income and learning what products or services work for you.
Finding the best ways to make money can be overwhelming so I wanted to share my favorite three online income strategies, three that helped me make $142,000 last year.
Blogging: Where it All Started
Making money as a blogger and developing your piece of online real estate means finding the best online income sources for new bloggers as well as the ones that will make you the most money.
Now blogging is different from the other two online income sources we’ll look at. For the most part, blogging is going to be how you get other income sources in front of people. It’s the vehicle that allows you to make money with self-publishing or courses or affiliate marketing.
Not only is creating a blog critical to these other income sources, it can also be its own income source though.
Blogging is the New Real Estate
I’ve been running my own blogs since 2014. I’m constantly amazed at how easy it is to create and develop an online property and how it can grow into a solid cash flow. I now own three sites and averaged $12,200 a month in 2019..
Blogging isn’t an immediate source of passive income, as many people make it out to be, rather it’s a business just like any other. You have to put in the time to produce articles, promote them on social media and develop your revenue sources.
But blogging can grow into an amazing income source over time.
The largest traffic source for most bloggers is from Google search traffic. Building that traffic from search takes time but visitors will continue to find your site well after you’ve stopped promoting your articles.
Creating an online income from blogging means following a few simple rules:
Too many bloggers wait forever to start making money because they’re still ‘building traffic’. If you have one visitor, you can make money.
● Diversify your income sources.
Use advertising, affiliates, sponsored posts, courses, and self-publishing. Blogging income sources can be unreliable from month-to-month, so you don’t want to rely on just one source.
● Don’t avoid search engine optimization (SEO).
A lot of bloggers think SEO is too technical or too much work but learning the basics can really help set you apart. Even a new blog with a little SEO magic can rank your posts on the first page of Google for free traffic.
The ease of starting a blog hides the hard fact that you’ll need to work to grow your blog. Stick with it though and blogging will drive your other income sources as well as grow into an income source of its own.
Self-Publishing: My Favorite Passive Income Source
Self-publishing has been, by far, my favorite source for online income. It’s not my largest revenue source but is easily the most passive.
I’ve made a total of $86,190 since 2015 from twelve self-published books on Amazon, paperback and audiobook. I average over $2,000 a month from the books and add to that $15,000 from the rights to another book I sold and you can see the true money-making potential here.
Better still is that self-publishing is almost completely passive. After launching your book and getting those initial sales to rank on Amazon, you’ll need to do very little to keep making new sales every month.
Self-publishing is a natural fit for bloggers
You’re already creating content and developing your expertise in a niche, why not monetize that expertise?
Besides publishing books through platforms like Amazon, you can also convert posts or guides into printables to sell through your site. Creating printables of just a few pages is a great idea because you can hyper-target your marketing with printables directly related to your high-performing posts.
Try this passive income self-publishing strategy to seamlessly work the income source into your blogging
- Choose a popular topic on your blog that you can turn into a book, a topic that you can create a transformation around.
- Brainstorm the process behind causing this transformation in readers including major steps, frequent questions and hurdles.
- Research books within the topic on Amazon. What are other authors talking about, what are they missing and what can you add? Check out reviews for each book as well. What did readers like and what else did they want to see?
- List out 8 – 12 chapter ideas for your book. These should offer a natural path to your reader’s transformation including everything you found through your research.
- Outline each chapter, the relevant topics in each and what you want to cover, then publish one chapter a week as a blog post.
- After a few months, collect all the posts into a single document and reformat into a book. Once the book is published, add a call-to-action and a link in each post to your Amazon page.
- This strategy breaks your book into manageable chunks and keeps you on track to finish it. It also turns your blog into a ready-made marketing channel. Each post will start drawing Google search visitors, readers that are targeted and interested in your book’s topic.
Self-publishing won’t make you rich but it’s a solid online income source. After launch, just a few sales a month from advertising and your blog should be enough to keep the book ranked and generating sales from the billions of users on Amazon.
I make between $100 and $500 on each of my published books but they average out to stable monthly income. Don’t give up if one book isn’t a best-seller. Publish a few books and the numbers will work out for you.
Video Courses: The Next Level for Online Income
There’s a rule of thumb in online income: You can make quick money through advertising and affiliate partnerships, but the real money is in your own products.
I’ve seen it in transitioning from affiliates to spending more time on self-publishing and when making the transition to the next level, online video courses.
Self-publishing is great, but you’ll make about $3 per copy sold. The upside is that you benefit from Amazon’s billions of monthly views to sell hundreds of copies of your books.
But why not make $300 per sale?
This is the idea behind creating a video course. It takes longer to develop your course, and you probably won’t make as many sales, but you only need a few sales to make thousands a month, especially when you’re selling courses online.
Whereas most ebooks on Amazon sell for between $3 to $5 a copy, you can easily price your courses between $99 and $500 each. I’ve seen video courses and workshops sell for $1,000 though I prefer the lower range.
Creating a great video course isn’t as difficult as it seems. If you can create a book, you can turn it into a video course of the material. Not only can you turn a video course into a stable monthly income, but it will build your brand for sponsorship opportunities and even more money.
Creating a video course is a lot more work than publishing a book but you’ve already got some of the work done. See which of your books are popular with readers then consider converting those books into video courses.
Key Tips for Making Money with Video Courses
- Just as you created marketing channels by posting your book chapters to your blog, consider uploading a few of your course videos to YouTube.
- Start developing a YouTube channel now for your courses so you’ll have an audience that is used to following you on video.
- Use your YouTube channel to start the learning curve for video production. Believe me, there’s a lot more that goes on in producing a good video than you see by watching it. Practicing with videos on your channel will help you get proficient before you start recording course material.
- Courses don’t need to require weeks of students’ time. Think of your course in terms of the transformation you’re trying to produce in students and the quickest way to get them there.
- Invest a little money to boost the quality of your courses audio and video. This means using a quality webcam or DSLR camera and a digital microphone.
- People don’t buy information; they buy the transformation. Remember that when creating and promoting your course. What is the change you want to create?
- Be conversational. Nobody wants to sit through three hours of flat instruction. Share your personal stories within the theme.
- Keep it exciting and engaging with different media throughout the course. Use some talking head videos, PowerPoint presentations, screen-share walk-throughs, and even animated sequences to keep your students engaged.
These aren’t the only sources for online income but are three on which you can center your work-from-home business. Each of these three income ideas is at least partially passive, meaning you’ll continue to make money each month even as you move on to the next product.
Don’t rely on just one income source
Diversify your monthly income for reliable and substantial cash flow. It can be devastating seeing your only source of online income drop off. Being able to rely on multiple sources helps keep you in the game without getting discouraged.
The beauty is that you don’t need dozens of ideas. Focusing on just a few proven income sources can set the foundation for your work from home business, just keep at it and you will make money!
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