10 Ways to Make Money Online Part 1

Find a way that suits you digitally to earn income

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In this day and age, there’s never been a more perfect time to find opportunities digitally and build an income stream either part-time or full-time. The democratisation of user platforms, accessibility of connecting you to people all over the world, and bridging the gap between supply and demand to near zero means lifestyles can be built solely online if you want to.

I’ve been doing this for a number of years, exploring the various ways you can tap into these opportunities. It’s certainly requiring some form of commitment to the idea to see any kind of fruit bear from the tree, but if you’re committed enough, here are 10 different ways you can earn an income online and build a life on your terms.

Remember that while these are digital ideas you can get off the ground fairly quickly, they are not quick or easy ways to make money: each requires different skill sets and time commitments to be experienced within these fields and the perseverance to see the growth. it’s just figuring things out along the way to make it sustainable. But thankfully, you can get started straight away.

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YouTuber

One of the most popularised occupations of the last decade is being a YouTuber. In the early days, the idea of being a YouTuber is often scoffed at, for the outlandish and wild idea one person would aspire to be. Nowadays, the stigma of such a thing is much smaller, namely because there are many people who do find varying degrees of success on the platform to earn an income, doing what they love.

It’s as easy as opening a YouTube account and uploading videos recorded straight from your phone, but as easy as it is to be a creator, the execution, branding content ideation, and production are where the real commitment and patience of your efforts will come into play. I always say the easy it is, the harder it is to stand out because there’s plenty of noise and a saturated market to figure stuff out for yourself. But where there are eyes, there is a demand and it’s tapping into that, finding your niche, what you want to create and be known for that will determine its viability in the long term.

If you value the freedom to be creative, educate or create content outside of what a typical job pays for, well now you can really build something out of it AND get paid for it.

Virtual Assistant

If you’re organised, good at managing yourself, or taking ownership or overseeing a diary, virtual assistants are growing in demand for businesses that operate online and across time zones. This opens up great opportunities for people, especially in developing countries as you have access to a wider market of people needing extra hands, all from the luxury of your home and country. It doesn’t matter where you are in the world but you’ll need to be available to meet the demands of what the person needs in a virtual assistant and that means maybe being on call, working in a different time zone, being on top of daily tasks and regular communication as the VA.

If that sounds like you, you’ll be exposed to more than what you can in your home country and build up some impressive experience and resume to show you can operate within a digital framework, especially as the pandemic has accelerated to building a remote working kind of culture.

Ecommerce

One Tech Traveller Etsy Shop

One of the biggest opportunities out of the digital age has been the democratisation of eCommerce shops: it’s never been so easy to build your website and sell products of any medium worldwide. The way it increases the potential customer base is staggering when you think of local/offline stores or having to rely on big platforms to sell. Now you have more platforms like Etsy empowering smaller businesses or individual creatives to sell DTC (direct to consumer) without all the overhead costs historically associated with it. Sell it directly on your own website or on platforms like Etsy, the choice is yours.m

If you have a physical product or digital product, you can easily build a shopfront online and start selling. You can also sell on social media like Facebook, and Instagram shopping, and the ever-increasing integration of social media shopping.

You’ll need to focus your money and budget on increased advertise and understand how to target the audience you want to serve in order to rise above the endless stream of shops and sellers. You’ll also need to have a solid physical product or digital product worth buying as reviews and reputation can hold more influence including customer service to deal with issues and support.

EBooks

The democratisation of eCommerce also extends to digital products we can sell. It’s never been easier to create so if you think of yourself as an author or writer but don’t want to take it with to a publisher with less lucrative terms and higher upfront costs, create an eBook and sell it direct yourself. As long as you’re delivering something of value to the reader, whether it’s developing a new skill, a guide, a story, or something educational, you’ll generally find an audience that will find value in that.

Sell it directly on your own website or on platforms like Etsy, the choice is yours. Like with eCommerce, you’ll need to research or do paid advertising to reach these people which is what publishers usually help with. But if you’re willing to spend time understanding the landscape, you can crack the code like many others who are doing the same online.

Digital Courses

If you have fairly extensive knowledge of a subject, topic, or field, there may be interest in what people can learn, and therefore why not create a digital course to create a systematic or structured way for people to learn. Think of it as bitesize educational courses to upskill, such as computing languages, software, soft skills like public speaking, and more.

It’ll take some time to create these digital courses and should always deliver value as you effectively become the teacher and new enrolments become students. Maybe you didn’t feel you were taught that well in the years prior which frustrated you. Well, you can deliver a course in the way you find the most effective for others and educate them with your accumulated knowledge.

Blogger

Fancy yourself more of a writer than a video creator, create a website and start sharing your stories and build your readership. Creating searchable, valuable content will help you rank in Google well, as is the nature of your topics and what people would like to know. Your way with words can be monetised through advertisements, sponsored content and more can build a fairly consistent stream of income but it’ll take some time. It’ll take at least 6 months of consistent, quality writing to see real progress but the content will work for you in the future, even years after you initially created the post. This is an example of putting in extra work now to eat off it in the future, but still requires plenty of attention if algorithms, search, and discoverability change, which usually happens.

Dropshipping

If you don’t have any experience in creating a product, don’t worry. Dropshipping can be very hands-on if it works as you essentially become the shop front to order and the shipments come directly from the supplier to the customer. Little interaction is needed but requires plenty of research, quality testing, long lead times in delivery or upfront resources depending on how you choose to handle inventory and transactions. And there’s the need to sell customers which you’ll need to spend on paid advertising across platforms. It can be lucrative but in a crowded space, you’ll need to build up some experience and understanding of logistics.

Influencer

Through the voice of social media, an influencer has become a mainstream term for people of followings and clout that ‘influence’ people such as fashion, beauty, and information, but essentially influence followers in purchase decisions to make sales. This can be in a professional or informal setting, but you’ll want to make sure you’re honest, transparent, and influence will integrity on the products you talk about or recommend to people.

Influencers have had an evolving image over time both good and bad, but if you have a knack for real value sharing and find a way to make your voice add value, it opens up collaborations, partnerships, and sponsor projects with brands to generate income. This could vary depending on your follower number but as it is hugely saturated, advertisers are more critical of who they choose to work with.

Brands are more receptible these days to highly engaged but smaller followers so even if you don’t have a huge following, there may still be opportunities, it just takes time. It’s pretty time-consuming but if you enjoy the content process, have a passion for your subject matter, and feel like you have something valuable to share, empower your voice.

Streamer / eSports

One of the biggest breakthroughs in the decade is live streaming. It became such a prevalent form of content, most notably in the gaming eSports category. It’s amazing how nowadays becoming a streamer or competitive eSports player is an actual path that allows gaming enthusiasts to make all that time spent playing games worthwhile. It’s not easy and there’s more to it than simply streaming yourself playing games, but the fact is you can build a following or huge fan base, be competitive in gaming tournaments with high stakes, or compete in a team sponsored by brands and companies to reward the most elite levels of players.

Even casual players can find their gaming tribe, and share their joys with a wider online community all over the world. Streaming platforms such as Twitch have a big community culture where they can support their creators by either donating, gifting or buying subscriptions to see their favourite creator do what they do for their personal enjoyment or value. It’s a lot of work, and requires investment in quite high-performance gaming and recording equipment, especially when it comes to doing it professionally. But if you have a table, play regularly, and aren’t shy in front of the camera or talk a lot through a headset, you’re halfway there.

Podcaster

Voice is a very powerful medium beyond video and writing. It’s super flexible to digest whether on a car ride, or commute on the train through apps like Anchor, Spotify, or SoundCloud and is less equipment intensive compared to video. This requires plenty of thought and emphasises the quality of the audio experience so you’ll want to research the technical abilities for that professional polish. Like with the other streams above, it’s easier than ever to get started, but the business and monetising side requires far more thought.

Audio sponsored messages, the power is in the audience reach and viewership, so if you’re passionate about sharing interesting episodes through the power of voice whether that be stories, educational, interviews, or entertainment, build on the interest and passion without worrying about the business side for now, until it’s in a position you’re experienced in the trade.

These are some of the most popular streams of earning an income online, some born out of the digital revolution over the last decade like streaming, eCommerce, and a creator, others that have been around for a while but their adoption rapidly accelerated such as podcasting, and more traditional forms of creating online such as blogging. Stay tuned for future part articles inspiring the kinds of opportunities you can make an income online in future digital income series.

Please consider supporting my work by contributing any amount as low as $1. This helps to maintain my website costs, development, creation efforts and putting food on the table. Your support is very much appreciated. Keep being awesome! Donate to support my platforms