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Ways to Make Money Online

Written by George Manty  · October 14, 2008

money

There are many ways to make money online. I like to group them into three main categories:

  1. Making money selling your stuff

  2. Making money selling other people’s stuff

  3. Getting paid to do something

Let’s talk a little more about each of these categories…

Way #1 – Making money selling your stuff
When most people think of starting a business they think of selling their own stuff. Here are some of the ways that people sell their own stuff online:

  1. Selling products
    When I started out online my intention was to create educational software and sell it online. Like myself, most people that start a business online start off with the idea of selling a product. Almost every product imaginable can be sold online. Arguably, the easiest to create are information products.

  2. Selling Services/Freelancing
    One of the quickest ways to start making money online is by selling your services. You call sell all kinds of services online. Some of the more common online services being sold are web design, freelance writing, coaching/teaching, virtual assistants, copywriting, traffic generation, and software development.

  3. Domaining
    Domaining is essentially the process of buying and selling domains. While I own quite a few domains, most of them were bought with the purpose of developing them at some point in time. Although, I would be willing to sell some of them. For example, when John Reese bought trafficjam.com I wish he had contacted me about buying one of my domains blogtrafficjam.com, since I am not sure I will develop the idea I had for it when I bought it several years ago.

  4. Website Flipping
    Website flipping is a very tempting business model to me. Flipping websites is a lot like flipping houses. You buy a website with the sole purpose of making it better so that you can turn around sell it. Much like house flipping, you should buy a website with good potential that is not properly monetized and/or not properly designed and marketed. After “rehabbing” the website, you can sell it at a much higher price. This process sounds like fun to me, except that I would have a hard time parting with the site after fixing it. I am more likely to buy a website, fix it up, and keep it for the residual income.

There are other ways to make money selling your own stuff, but the ones listed above are the most common.

Way #2 – Making money selling other people’s stuff

  1. Affiliate Marketing
    Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make money online, and I will be discussing it in much more detail in a future series (or a free mini-course). Essentially, affiliate marketing is revenue sharing between online advertisers/merchants and online publishers/salespeople, whereby affiliates(publisher/sales people) are paid based on performance measures, typically in the form of sales, clicks, registrations, or a combination of methods. In layman’s terms, it means you get a percentage of a sale when you sell someone else’s stuff or cause someone to take an action that might sell someone else’s stuff. It is currently my primary method of making money online.

  2. Advertising Income
    Many websites make money by selling advertising space on their site. This is most commonly done on content sites. Advertising income can also be gained through other methods like selling ad space on website templates and selling ad space in newsletters.

  3. Drop Shipping
    Drop shipping is a technique where you sell products from one or more suppliers who take care of shipping the products directly to the customer. All you do is take the order and get the money from the customer, then you send the order details and and part of the money that you charge to the supplier. You make profit on the difference between the suppliers price (including shipping) and the price you charge the customer. This is essentially running a wholesale business without the inventory, although you will usually pay somewhere between true wholesale and retail prices for the goods. I have seen a lot of people run drop shipping businesses on ebay.

  4. Retail commerce
    Retail commerce is where you buy products at wholesale prices from wholesale distributors, carry an inventory and turn around and sell said products. Many of the ecommerce shops you see are doing this. This model is similar to drop shipping. The advantage of this method is that you can make a higher profit margin then with drop shipping, the disadvantage is that you store the inventory and you handle the details of shipping the products.

These are the most common methods for selling other people’s stuff online, although certainly not the only ones.

Way # 3 – Getting Paid To Do Something

  1. Paid to sites (Paid to surf, Paid to take surveys, etc.)
    With “paid to” sites you can make a little extra money online every month. You can’t really use these sites to make a living online (at least not that I’m aware of), so I won’t be devoting more space to them here. If you’re interested in a little extra cash, and this method appeals to you, there is plenty of information available on the internet. And if you ARE making a living from these sites, and you’d be interested in writing a series on the topic, contact me.

As you are considering how YOU want to make big money online, this list should prove a good starting place . In my next post in the getting started series, I will be wrapping up with a list of resources to help you continue your quest to make money online.


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Comments

28 Responses to “Ways to Make Money Online”

  1. allychan on October 16th, 2008 5:11 am

    Hi, I am Ally Chan. This is my first time here!

    What a clear post….
    Normally other marketer just list down the ways you can make money online. And it may be the long list and the reader might lose in mind what I can do in order to make money online.

    But you post provide a clear guidance and group it into 3 main categories. This is easy for a make money online newbie to select the most suitable way of make money online for them.

    Thank for your sharing …

  2. George Manty on October 16th, 2008 7:18 am

    Ally Chan,

    Thanks. A friend once told me that I have a great knack for simplifying the complex.

    Glad this helped.

  3. pdanuva on October 16th, 2008 9:34 pm

    Nice Post. Thanks for sharing this information with us.

  4. Bryan Lock on October 20th, 2008 4:44 am

    Wow, it’s really a nice sharing, such much online opportunities…

  5. CubeWarrior on October 21st, 2008 9:52 am

    One thing of note is that you may have to try several of the various methods before you find one that truly works “for you”. Just saying “i’m going to make money from drop shipping” sounds good, but it might not work out for various reasons. But you may very well find a talent for working on Paid to sites or website flipping ,etc.

  6. Shanita on October 21st, 2008 9:42 pm

    Thanks for the post to start with!Even Internet Dummies could just get kick started with your guidelines. Truly amazing and encouraging…. You could also add few reliable sources for people who are just starting up to avoid being cheated …. Coz that gives a lasting impression and they might just stop trying ….

  7. The Lazy Slacker on October 26th, 2008 8:51 am

    Seems like most bloggers do a combination of affiliate product sales, ads, and selling their own products.

    I’m using only a few of the methods but it does makes sense to do as many as possible.

    Different streams of revenue results in higher income.

    Great post.

  8. iBuxRocks on October 30th, 2008 11:14 am

    This article is simple to understand. I am going to bookmark this to share with others! Thanks!

    iBuxRocks69
    http://www.ibux.com – Pays consumers cash to complete offers online
    members.ibux.com/frank@ibux.com

  9. Wolfman on November 4th, 2008 2:15 pm

    Great info for start-ups, placing the ways of making money online into separate categories definetly helps to get a clear picture. It’s never easy in the beginning to decide which way to make money online. Good advice for those who want to start their business online would be to keep in mind all those sources and use as many of them as possible. Your poential customers might have more options to make you rich.

  10. Olgi Zenullari on November 5th, 2008 12:50 am

    There are many new webmasters out there who are lost and don’t know what to do to make some money online. I believe that this post will help them determine what their skills are and how they can start earning from today

    Cheers

    Olgi Zenullari

  11. Sylvia on November 8th, 2008 7:01 am

    An excellent site and I can understand why you are on the top 100 list, your advice is great.and no nonsense.

  12. Wilson Pon on November 9th, 2008 4:57 am

    Hmm…, the Dropshipping and Retail Commerce methods seemed to be a very great tips here. Although I have never tried them before, but I’m sure to give it a shoot in the near future!

    Thanks for the tips šŸ™‚

  13. isabelle Newton on November 13th, 2008 9:52 am

    Good advice. I’m using a few of these methods but have been thinking about switching and trying some other ways so thanks – really helpful.

  14. Dave on November 19th, 2008 8:20 pm

    I like the idea of site flipping. I actually do some “house flipping” on the side, and have had some success with it. But, like you said sometimes the project gets too personal and you find it hard to part with. However, I must say once you see the money it is an easy part. I will have to look into the “site flipping” thing. Is there a certain site you look for? or style? and how much would one of these sites go for? and how much would they flip for?

    Thanks,

    Dave

  15. George Manty on November 19th, 2008 10:27 pm

    Dave there are quite a few programs that teach you how to you flip sites and if you search for “how to flip websites” or similar terms you should find more information on it. I don’t have experience with this method of making money online, however it is appealing to me as well. I might write a more detailed post about how I would flip sites. Generally speaking you would want to buy a site with a lot of potential that hasn’t been properly monetized and/or promoted.

  16. Dave on November 20th, 2008 8:21 am

    George,

    Thanks for the reply. Look forward to your more detailed post on site flipping. Really has my interest.

    Dave

  17. caroline hornsby on November 21st, 2008 3:14 am

    Some really good advice. There are loads of ways to make you richer on-line. Choosing the right one that will a) keep your interest and b) make you money is a minefield of research and dead ends. Thanks for the list.

  18. Tina on December 8th, 2008 4:57 pm

    I’ve been an eBay seller and buyer for years. I’m at a 100% rating and enjoy the selling process. I mainly sell stuff around the house but now I have friends asking me to sell their stuff. What’s the appropriate percentage I should ask for in my time to do so?

  19. George Manty on December 9th, 2008 8:13 am

    Tina,

    I haven’t really looked at that. I would think that a 50% share of the profits would be a fair asking price. Since you are acting sort of like a consignment shop that would be a good business to compare this to. Most consignors earn an average of 45% to 65% depending on the consignment shop. I personally would charge 50 percent (an even split).

    Hope that helps,
    George

  20. Niranjan Ranade on December 13th, 2008 2:52 am

    Well said George. Making money does involve value addition and helping others get what they want. Many people forget about these 2 aspects & keep chasing money while loosing hard earned cash on advertising. I wish every newbie understands that eventually they need to create value to ever get paid šŸ™‚

  21. P-C on December 16th, 2008 8:30 am

    Hello,

    Thank you for this clear overview of the methods to make an income online. At CMSProfit.com we focus on online merchants and the business aspect of CMS systems.

    Best regards,
    P-C
    Editor, CMSProfit.com

  22. JohnKhoo on January 17th, 2009 9:45 am

    Very good categorization. I manage to make money online by doing affiliate marketing and earn some advertising income. Now, i just bought a new website and will add in extra work of mine into it. This will be my first website flipping business. Hopefully i will be paid well for what i did.

  23. Mr Javo on February 6th, 2009 7:24 am

    Hey George, nice summary of ways to make money online. I would like to add there is an important thing you forgot to mention to sell your own products. It’s super hard to be newbie on internet and start making loads of sells.

    I think it’s important to expose your brand, so when somebody is gonna buy your product they will remember your face or logo, and that will create a sense of trust between you and your costumer.

  24. George Manty on February 6th, 2009 8:08 am

    Mr Javo,

    Thanks and yest that’s an important point to remember.

  25. Drifin on June 6th, 2009 7:26 am

    well said George. There are plenty of opportunities to make money but the question is do you have the determination to look for money online? I asking this question because making money online is a very competitive business, without the determination you will not going anyway. Just a thought.

  26. George Manty on January 31st, 2010 11:30 am

    I took it out of my wallet and snapped a photo šŸ™‚

    Actually, I can’t recall, except that it was in the public domain and I took it and played around with the colors and clarity.

  27. Richard McMahon on September 8th, 2010 4:48 pm

    A real eye opening post, it’s easy to think of affiliate marketing and advertising income as the only way to make money online but there is so much more out there. I’m definitely going to take a look into domain flipping.

    If i could add anything on affiliate marketing it would be to make sure you act on what you learn sooner rather than later, otherwise you end up with too many questions that stop you getting your feet wet. Read, then act, read, act and repeat.

  28. BlogSpot Money on September 20th, 2010 8:54 pm

    Affiliate Marketing seems to be the easiest way to make money online now a days! The average person can spend some time, invest in a course or two and be able to supplement their full time income.





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