What’s the catch? None, really. Cash back apps act as affiliates for many online merchants, which means that whenever you make a purchase through one of the apps, they get a small commission — but then, they give you a portion of that commission as “cash back”. For example, if I buy a pair of Nike shoes through the Ebates app (or website) and spend $75, Ebates may get a $10 commission but then they’ll pass $7 back to me. It’s basically a way to get sale prices on stuff that isn’t on sale!
Research other listings in your city on AirBnB and see what the going rate is for a place like yours. You could also just rent out a private room as well or even a bed in a shared room. In fact, that's how AirBnB got its start. However, you might find it hard in the beginning without reviews, but as long as you take really good care of your guests and provide a lot of value, the reviews will eventually come rolling in.
Join a startup accelerator: Another great option is to apply to a startup accelerator like Y Combinator, 500 startups, or TechStars, where a group of investors will help coach you, connect you with potential partners, and provide startup cash in return for a small stake in your company. The competition is tough to get into these, so don’t rely on them as your only path forward.
Re-selling web hosting will enable you to make money hosting your own client’s websites. Large hosting companies like HostGator allow you to white label their hosting services. You could start your own hosting business or, if you are a web designer, include hosting into your web design packages. And the best of it is the hosting companies take care of the hosting for you, so all you need to worry about is selling.
Okay, it can be rather difficult to make a living solely from this but it’s a great place to start if you’re planning to build your own mystery shoppers’ army. Customer experience is one of the biggest obsessions of online and offline retailers, so there’s great potential here! Take a look at some of the existing platforms like Mystery Shopper and Secret Shopping.
"Thinking that ideas are more important than teams. I hear a lot of first-time entrepreneurs tell me 'I have a great idea for an app; I just need to find a technical co-founder to code it.' But successful startups iterate their original idea constantly based on market feedback. Sometimes they even radically pivot like Paypal or Slack. Only great teams can do that, so the execution is much more important than the original concept. And it’s easier to change the idea than it is to change the team."
Build your audience on a course community: If you’re just getting started building an audience for yourself and want to leverage communities already actively looking for content you can choose to host and sell your online course on a site like Skillshare or Udemy. These are easy, cost-effective ways to build an audience and test your niche to see if there’s demand for it.
As long as there is still the written word, there will always be editors. Freelance editing and proofreading not only pays a decent hourly wage, it also gives you the chance to read about potentially interesting topics too. What's more, pursuing freelance writing & editing as a business idea can afford you a lifestyle that lets you travel the world as a digital nomad. You can find lots of job postings from companies and individuals in need of writing, proofreading, and editing services on Contena, which makes this a high-demand opportunity to make money online.
Today, businesses have more ways -- and places -- than ever to market themselves. But deciding on a marketing method, particularly when you are a small or even a mid-sized business with a small budget and limited resources, can be difficult. While social media marketing is generally free, it can be time-consuming; and the same goes for blogging. But traditional print advertising, as well as digital advertising, can be expensive.
If you’re a software engineer, the perks of working at a startup or tech giant are pretty sizable, but if you’re more invested in flexibility, diversity of projects, taking on work at your own pace, and the freedom of being your own boss, then freelance coding is one of the greatest online business ideas around. Whether you’re into web design—an especially popular freelance coding category—or another kind of software development, it shouldn’t be too much of a challenge to find clients you’re interested in helping out.
This is one of the fundamental online marketing tips for small business. Making it easy for customers to find you won't help until you have a clear enough idea about who your target market is. Do your homework and draft out the personas of potential customers, or the advertising money will sip through your fingers. I’m not suggesting that you should hire a research professional or buy a comprehensive industry analysis. Every business owner can determine their target audience based on the characteristics of their product (for guidelines, look here).
Don’t you just hate it when you go to a website and find out something about it is broken or hard to use? As much as it bugs you, it drives the owner of the website you’re looking at up a wall. That bad functionality and brokenness mean less sales and traffic for the site owner. It also means that website testing is a legitimate way to make money online.
If I have a blog that is getting 100,000 page views a month that means that I’m probably getting at least 50,000 people to the site (most blogs will do between 1.2 to 1.4 pages per session). That means I have to try and get some small percentage of those people to buy something from me if I really want to do well. If I can’t get them to buy something then (in some cases) I have ads running on the site that will make me money anyways.
Maybe you have a passion for cooking, fashion, or crafting. Or maybe you just have tons of great ideas that you know will help others. Starting a blog not only allows you to share your passion with the world, it also allows you to make money in the process. At the time of this writing, the DollarSprout blog brings in nearly $200,000 in revenue each month and supports a small team of writers and editors.
Become an Amazon Associate and then use Keyword planner to find an in-demand niche: With more than a million different products to choose from and up to 10% commission the sales you drive, Amazon’s affiliate program is a great place to get started. Browse their available products and see what connects with you. Or take it a step further and use Google’s Keyword Planner to quickly check how many people are searching for a specific term. With affiliate marketing, the more relevant traffic you can pull in, the more you’ll make off your site.

The First Rule in Marketing Anything is that nobody cares what you think. Most people don't take the time to learn how to sell things by identifying what people ACTUALLY want. Use this key fact about people to your advantage, make all the marketing about them. I've been running my business this way for years now, creating and selling products around those wants and desires. I've made a lot of money with this secret, and someone I look to who's also made a lot doing this is my friend Adrian Morrison. Over the last year built a brand new business around the idea of rapidly testing things to sell online. You need to learn Adrian's strategy. It's honestly never been easier to build out your own product testing system like his, and what's great is he's actually put together a book on exactly how he does it.
Online reviews have become one of the most important components in purchasing decisions by consumers in North America. According to a survey conducted by Dimensional Research which included over 1000 participants, 90% of respondents said that positive online reviews influenced their buying decisions and 94% will use a business with at least four stars. Interestingly, negative reviews typically came from online review sites whereas Facebook was the main source of positive reviews. Forrester Research predicts that by 2020, 42% of in-store sales will be from customers who are influenced by web product research.

Another way to make money blogging is through affiliate marketing (that’s where DollarSprout makes most of its revenue). Affiliate marketing means you link to a product for sale on another site and when readers click your link and buy the product, you get a cut of the profits. Amazon has an affiliate marketing program that’s easy to use and a great starting point for new bloggers.
Take good pictures. Some of the options below don’t require you to actually take the picture and sell the product, but for the ones that do, make sure you take a clear picture that makes your product stand out from the others.  If you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures, set up a small “studio-like” area in your home with a backdrop and proper lighting to really make your pictures come across as professional. And of course, you’ll want a good camera too.

Here’s the low-down: some internet domain names are more popular, sought-after, and valuable than others. Successful internet domain name flippers buy high-value domains for cheap at online auctions after lots of forethought and research, then sell to the biggest bidder for a nice profit. For example, www.hotels.com was sold for $11 million in 2001.


As you navigate the process of building your own business, keep an open mind about opportunities that pop up along the way. I didn’t start Fit Brains knowing I would sell it to Rosetta Stone, or that I would eventually leave the company to pursue a new passion project. Entrepreneurship is rife with surprises and unexpected ups and downs. It’s all about being flexible, accepting help, and switching direction as you grow.
Research individual companies in your desired niche: If possible, it’s always better to become an affiliate directly with a company (if they have an internal affiliate program), as no one else will be dipping into your commission rate. This is the preferred route for most of the prominent affiliate marketers, including Pat Flynn. Unfortunately, it’s also the most work, as you’ll have to do the research yourself to see who offers programs (they’re usually listed in the website footer).
If you live in Toronto, Canada, you don’t have to travel through the street of Toronto in search of a video editor, from the comfort of your office you can contract the editing of your videos to an expert somewhere in Tokyo, Japan and they will get the job done for you within record time. So if you have video editing skills, you can list your business on the internet and you can as well source for clients from the online community.
You can earn above average rates of return because peer-to-peer lending eliminates the bank function. That means that you participate in nearly the entire interest rate being paid by the borrower, rather than the less than 1% that you will typically earn on certificates of deposit. And you can reduce your risk by investing in slices of hundreds of different loans.

Starting an online business is a tempting prospect – but that’s the easy part! The real challenge is to find out which opportunities are specific to your area of expertise or knowledge. To make your decision making a bit easier, we have created a list of online business ideas which shows you some specific examples of independent career paths suitable for various skill sets.


What is great about Socialfresh's posts is that many of them include alternative media embedded in them. Most of them are podcasts covering the topic of the blog post that it is within, but others include videos and speeches or presentations at various events. This is a great blog for someone who may not have the time to sit and read multiple articles at a time. This offers you more than one way to consume the content that the blog is providing. It's an obvious choice to include some digital media in a blog that highlights digital marketing, and a welcomed alternative way to consume the information being presented. The diverse topics that are covered focus a lot on the power of social media and how the industry is evolving.
Hubspot’s blog is awesome for learning about today’s best inbound marketing strategies. We love how they keep their content relevant by linking to the latest happenings in the digital world. Another great feature is how they consistently break down the steps needed to get your digital content just right (not to mention some of their articles make us LOL!).
Medium is an online community where anyone can post articles and essays and get them in front of their audience of millions of monthly readers. While it can be a great place to build your audience for your own blog or find customers for your consulting business, with Medium’s new Partner Program, you can now make money online whenever someone reads your articles. Register for free and you can choose whether your articles are freely available or only readable by those people paying $5/month for a premium Medium membership. You’ll make money based on the amount of people who read and engage with your posts each month.
If you're at all interested in starting your own online business, there's no time like the present. We live in a golden age of wealth. As much as the media tries to glorify the perils of our society, we actually live in a time that's ripe with opportunity and the potential for monumental business growth at a scale never before experienced. Thanks to the internet and smartphones, the amount of commerce being conducted online has experienced explosive growth.
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