4 Great Ways to Start Making Money Online and Potentially Turn It Into a Business 81

best ways to start making money online

Many people still haven’t realized that the possibilities of the digital world are countless, and new ones are coming every minute.
Whoever you are, and whatever you do, you can become self-employed, work from the comfort of your home and make money. All you need is a laptop, Internet connection and a PayPal account.

In the beginning, it’s best to start doing it on the side. Do your research to make yourself familiar with all the things you can do online that will help you make a living. Once you’re making enough, quit your job. By the way, you can still do what you do best, just in front of the screen.
And if you don’t have any knowledge or experience, there are still many ways to make an income.

The best thing is that you’ll be taking up new projects whenever you feel like, will work as hard as you want, and often whenever you want. Won’t have to get to an office, be in an unfriendly environment, answer to your boss or wait for the weekend. Monday won’t be a problem anymore, and the harder you work, the more you’ll earn.

Let me make something clear, though. All the ideas I’ll share here are absolutely honest ways to start earning money and eventually turn it into a business if you want to scale. But you can’t go without hard work, going the extra mile and offering value.

If you’re not ready to do that, then this post is not for you.

But if you are, there’s no need for any initial capital. You’ll be investing time and effort, and it may be a long time before any significant amount of money starts coming in. The Internet is full of stories of people who made it in a week, but most often they were experienced, already had an audience, or a good portfolio, or else.

Don’t compare yourself to them. Choose an option (or a few) from the list below that are most suitable to what you know, related to your hobbies and passion, or just things you think you’ll be good at.

Start doing it today, but do your research, do some brainstorming and get ready to work harder than the average person. Because that’s what needs to be done to make a change in your lifestyle.

4 Ways to Start Making Money from the Internet

1. Sell handmade goods.

Millions of people all over the world have hobbies, are making things by hand at home, build skills by doing what they love, dedicate all their free time to creating activities.

If you’re such an artistic and talented soul, and haven’t even thought of selling your goods, you’re losing money. Sites like Etsy exist because of people who make jewelry, soap, candles, clothes, frames, furniture, accessories, and anything else you can imagine, but who are also passionate about it, skilled and do it themselves.

Those whose products are worth it, and who found the right platform to show their work, are now making a living from their art. Some are easily earning six figures a month too. Why can’t that be you?

If your leisure activities include sewing, painting, drawing, cooking, designing, inventing or carving anything, be sure that there are many people out there who’d gladly pay money for your product.

Give them that chance by taking great pictures of the items you create, describing them and uploading them on a site for handmade things. If you’re targeting a specific niche, be sure that your customers will find you.

If things are going well, you can start making money online soon, and after some time turn your passion into a career, quit your regular job, and become your own boss by setting up your own online store.

2. Create niche sites.

Niche sites are specifically targeted (usually) small sites, who are created after a good keyword research, have content on a certain topic and are monetized in one or more ways.

You don’t need to be a marketing expert to do it, but you’ll have to be ready to invest enough time and energy. The result here can be a steady income (usually passive as some people create such sites with a little content, put a product for selling or ads on it, and never touch it again), just a little money every now and then (in which case niche site creators just build many of these), or simply nothing (if the niche you’ve chosen is not profitable).

If you want to give it a try, choose something you’re passionate about or a subject about which you know more than most people. Do your keyword research well, target a phrase that can be monetized (other people must be already making money from it. You can see that by checking Amazon and see how popular the products in this field are.) and create content around it.

The point is to make your site rank for the chosen keyword high in Google, preferably on top of the page. Some people manage to succeed in this by creating just a few pages for the site, but it’s always better if you update it frequently, write long posts on the topic each of which is informative, includes many synonyms of the keyword and isn’t spammy but well optimized and with a natural look.
Once (if) you do your job right, people will start finding it through search engines. And you’ll have only readers interested in the particular topic, so no need to wonder whether they’ll pay money for a product connected to it or not.

When you grow your traffic, you can start making money in 3 main ways:
• putting ads on the site;
• creating and selling your information products (add an eBook on the subject, a course, video tutorials, etc.);
• affiliate marketing (promote other people’s products or directly include links to ones on Amazon that visitors would like, and make a commission every time they buy something).

3. Teach what you know.

People want and need to learn new stuff and are always looking for the fastest and easiest way possible.

That’s why the how-to YouTube channels are so popular, online courses are a hit, and informative guides are preferred over content with no action steps.

Everyone’s good at something. The interesting thing is that these days you can just do your research and thus know more than the average person. That’s all you need to start offering a product, or your services, and make money by teaching people how to do something.

If you know how to work with a difficult program, create a video tutorial, include screenshots and explain slowly what to do by doing it yourself.
If you work in a gym, are a lawyer, cook well, know a foreign language, have hacked your sleep or memory, or else, you can share it with others and help them improve this area of their lives.

Choose the right medium for that – videos, audio format (podcasts) or written word. You can offer phone calls, do webinars, create presentations, or just write a how-to guide.

In the beginning you can offer it using the most popular platforms out there connected to your specific format (iTunes for podcasts, YouTube for videos, Udemy for courses, etc.) and thus get paid to share your knowledge in that field. Then, you can set up a site for yourself, partner with a company, or else, and increase your income and personal brand by turning the whole thing into a profitable business.

4. Freelance.

Sites like Freelancer and UpWork, and many, many more, are what many people (professionals or not) use to make a full-time living while working from home.

Most jobs are connected to programming, design, writing, online marketing and advertising. So if you know how to code, can write well, proofread or translate stuff, are good at making sites, can help someone with their marketing strategy, or else, then you can easily find clients for small jobs, and have the chance to turn each into a long term business relationship.

When you have no reviews and experience in the chosen site, you won’t be accepted often. But once you build a reputation for yourself, clients would love to work with you.

Once that makes you enough money, you can easily offer your professional services on a place of your own and get all the revenue without a third party.

That’s how amazing the online world is. Whatever it is you know or are good at, you can monetize it. If you don’t have any skill, you can learn it today with all the content offered for free, or can even start completing tasks for people online as a virtual assistant until you get to the next level.

Are you making money online? How? If not, which of these 4 would you try first and why?

Get The Lifestyle Designer's Digest
Directly into your inbox every Monday.
Previous ArticleNext Article

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 6

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected


When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.


How to Use Content Marketing to Boost Your Business 6 Marketing Influencers You Must Follow

You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”


You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.