14 Passive Income Ideas Requiring Upfront Time Investment

This article lists 14 passive income ideas. Passive income is not a get-rich-quick scheme.

It requires the upfront effort of money or time. The ideas listed here specialize in time investment and low to no money investment.

I spent 1 week of web research and combined it with personal experience applying a few of the ideas described.

The goal of this article is to inspire you. In this list, you could find one passive income idea that resonates with you most. If it is built around your hobby and passion then you will most likely stay with it in the long term. You can then combine many ideas for increased passive revenues.

The Gist (“Too Long Didn’t Read” version of the article)

As these ideas require mostly a time investment, once your role as a passive income builder is done, they require you to change your role to become a supervisor.

Passive income is not taught at school; neither debt, credit nor wealth creation. The Internet is the preferred platform to learn about that but it includes its own risks. Beware of sites just selling courses on how to make passive income when they are not actually creating it themselves.

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The passive ideas listed here do not include those requiring active involvement sometimes is mislabeled as passive. For instance, selling online handmade products. This way of selling products relies on daily active involvement to create and sell them. The passive equivalent would be making a course and selling it online once recorded in video. The ideas are grouped into categories:

  • Entrepreneurship (automate and outsource).
  • Media (create once and sell repeatedly).
  • Write (write once and sell repeatedly).

For every idea there are 4 axes analyzed:

  • Reward: What is the potential gain and how do you achieve it?
  • Risk: factors to keep in mind to not lose time nor money.
  • Time: what is the most time-consuming?
  • Money Needed: how much would you need to create passive income?

Passive income will not get you happiness. Freedom to do what you love. You should aim to have many income sources in the long term to reach more financial security.

Here below the 14 ideas:

  • The Gist (“Too Long Didn’t Read” version of the article)
  • Affiliate Marketing, Network Marketing, help businesses get clients
  • Blog (create it vs buying one and maintaining it)
  • Business (Car-wash, vending machine, laundromat)
  • Create an App / Software As A Service (SaaS)
  • Drop Shipping/eBay Seller/FBA
  • E-books sell online/publish a blank book
  • Flip retail products
  • License Music/Audio tracks/Podcast/ Buy royalties
  • Print on-demand online store. Design T-shirts
  • Sell Info and Digital products
  • Sell courses/Virtual summits
  • Sell stock photos
  • Social media Influencer/sponsored posts/paid community
  • Video creation/selling. YouTube channel
  • What is the next step?


“Entrepreneurship” ideas analysis diagram  Source: Prosperous Frugal

“Media” ideas analysis diagram Source: Prosperous Frugal

“Write” ideas analysis diagram Source: Prosperous Frugal

ideas analysis diagram
“Entrepreneurship” ideas analysis diagram Source: Prosperous Frugal
“Write” ideas analysis diagram Source: Prosperous Frugal

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1 Affiliate Marketing, Network Marketing, help the business get clients

  • Reward
    • Recommend products and services and once people buy them you earn a commission. It relies on people clicking on a link you provided to track your recommendation.
    • Can be monetized with other options in this article like blogging, recommending an app you developed, and in a YouTube channel or other media online.
    • Use good affiliate links. Only recommend products you would use yourself.
    • One advantage is that almost every big enterprise has an affiliate program.
    • 35% of affiliates globally earn over $20,000 per year and spending in the US has steadily grown and is expected to reach $8.2 billion in 2022 according to Statista.
    • Specialize: Choose a small category of products and services to recommend. Those should be related to a niche (i.e. a hobby/interest/topic). Then you can create a website, build your audience, attract them with great value content and join affiliate programs to earn rewards when people buy through your recommendations.
  • Risk
    • Passing Trend: Check Google Trends using words describing your niche. Avoid picking topics whose trends are declining and prioritize those going upwards or at least staying stable in the last 5 years.
    • Commission: You will rely on the commissions authorized by the enterprise creating the product or service. A few are good like Shopify, which gives up to $58 per referral. But others can be as small as $10 or less per sale.
  • Time
    • Audience: You need to build a community of people who frequently check the information you share. This will let you recommend the products and services and increase your earnings. As your audience is already interested in your niche, they are more prone to buy what you recommend.
    • Page visitors: Use SEO (search engine optimization) and ads to increase your site’s traffic.
    • This relies on blogging, which is the second idea in this article. The more traffic you get, the more people are visiting your website. So, potential earnings increase.
    • Consistency: Frequent content creation takes effort in creating content. You would need to create content, update it once a week, and repeat it for 2 years. So few people stick for 2 years.
  • Money needed
    • Does not need capital to join programs. But it can accelerate the site-building and content creation to build the audience needed.
    • To earn $100 per month, let’s consider a 5% commission, a product sold at $50, and a 1% conversion rate (from people visiting a page, what percentage by using your referral links (products you recommend).
      • A website needs 8,000 visits per month to get those $100.
      • Using Skillshare, 15 people per month because you can get 7$ through referrals. That is not difficult if you already have an audience on YouTube, Skillshare, or your website.
  • Tools
    • Affiliate networks: Awin, Aragon Premium, CJ, Impact Radius, ShareASale.
    • Affiliate programs: eBay Partner Network, Audible Affiliates, Shopify, Skillshare.
      • Amazon Associates (simple sign-up): People might not buy the product you recommended but another and if it is bought in 24h after a user clicked on your link, you still make money.
      • Publicize in social networks: Instagram, TikTok, Linked In, blog, website, YouTube (has good conversion rate), etc.
  • Success story

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Help Businesses Get Clients

  • It can be through a lead generation website. Then becoming a silent business partner.
  • Typically uses referral fees and referral programs. $5 per lead in low-end leads. Just avoid disturbing friends, family, and people in general by insisting too much on your offers.
  • For instance, real estate agents are always looking to help more people find a home they love. “1 person enterprises” will often be willing to pay a referral bonus for finding them a client that signs a contract. That includes freelancers, DJs, photographers, and others.

Network Marketing

  • There is a difference between legit Multi-Level marketing (MLM) and plain scams like ponzi schemes. One key way to identify scams is to focus on their main revenue source. Are they getting revenues mostly from new recruits or from providing value selling products and services? Scams get it only from new recruits and products/services are a way to hide their real revenue stream.
  • Examples of common networks: Young Living Essential Oils, Avon, Pampered Chef, AdvoCare, Herbalife, Mary Kay, DoTerra, and Rodan & Fields (R+F).
  • Network members can recruit others, use products and share the company’s products with others.

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2 Blog (create it vs buying one and maintaining it)

  • Rewards
    • The biggest benefit of creating a blog is that you can turn that one asset into several different streams of income.
    • A blog is monetized through ads and other ideas in this article such as affiliate marketing offers, info products, mobile apps, and sponsored posts. You can publicize an app you created, a video course, or any other product and service from which you could earn revenue.
    • Can be used as a platform to connect with an audience and sell them products and services related to your blog niche.
  • Time
    • It frequently takes 3 to 6 months to see the first revenue.
    • You can outsource many tasks to writers and digital assistants. But management and communication will be necessary as the blog scales.
    • It might take 2 years to start generating recurrent jobs replacing income.
    • Consistency: Pick a niche you are passionate about. Frequently create new content to get authority and followers/visitors.
  • Risk
    • Passing Trend: Check Google Trends using words describing your niche. Avoid picking topics whose trends are declining and prioritize those going upwards or at least staying stable in the last 5 years.
  • Money needed
    • Requires low capital if you create one
    • If you buy a blog and then maintain it: At least the initial test period would have been done by someone else and now you have an income-producing asset.
  • Tools
    • For buying blogs: Flippa and Empire Flippers.
    • Jarvis.ai (Conversion.ai) for automatic content creation using artificial intelligence and natural language to scan the internet and generate content.

3 Business (Car-wash, vending machine, laundromat)

This is the only group of ideas in this article that requires an important capital investment in addition to the effort invested. The options here consist in acquiring a business that does not require your involvement.

  • Rewards
    • Revenue sharing by participating financially in an enterprise or owning it entirely..
    • To make the business passive many tasks should be outsourced or delegated.
  • Time
    • Business creation is high time-consuming activity. Otherwise, if you buy an existing one, the upfront effort is in the capital.
  • Risk
    • Demand for the products and services: For instance, if you consider a car wash, be sure the neighborhood or surroundings are full of people having cars. For food trucks, near big buildings with many people going out for lunch.
  • Money needed
    • Requires important capital to buy one existing business like a car wash. Much less for a vending machine.
  • Tools
    • Mainvest (from $100) for revenue sharing.
    • Worthy (from $10) lend for inventory 5% per year.
    • Car-Wash (cinder-blocks, a pressure washer, and coin-operated). If not, rented to someone to operate it. If neither of both is done and it involves your time always, it is not really passive.
    • Vending machine: Place it somewhere with a decent amount of foot traffic, and you can outsource the restocking of snacks or drinks inside the machine.
    • Laundromat.
    • Food truck.
    • Franchise: Many big brands like McDonald’s license the brand and guidance to operate to individual restaurant owners. The big brand becomes a franchise and the individual owners are called franchisees. If business management and operation is delegated to reliable employees, this can turn into a passive venture. This model has the advantage of applying a proven business model. But it requires a high price acquisition upfront.
    • ATM: You make a profit from ATM fees charged each time someone uses the machine. You’re responsible for keeping the machine stocked with cash. You can also turn this into a passive income source by outsourcing this work to a trusted third party.

4 Create an App / Software As A Service (SaaS)

If you have a skill or service that you can share with others, you can build an app or create a product to sell. It could be a game app, stock trading, educational game or any other interest you have. For example, if you are passionate about fitness and have a background in creating workouts, you could create a workout app.

  • Rewards
    • Once you create an app or any piece of software, you could sell it through a subscription. Then put it under the SaaS (Software as a service) umbrella such as Alexa Skill.
    • It is monetized through ads, software selling, licensing or subscription
  • Time
    • Easier if you already have the coding skills.
    • Besides the effort to create an app, bigger efforts are needed to actually sell it
  • Risk
    • If your app collects any data from users and it reaches more and more users, be sure to comply with privacy laws. They can vary across the globe like GDPR in Europe or the California Privacy Act in the US.
    • It is a somewhat crowded market. Check trends to know what type of apps are most downloaded. If you have an idea to fill a gap in the app store, then aim to satisfy that need.
  • Money needed
    • No money is needed if you have the tools (computer/phone). There are many free courses to learn how to code online. You could pick a language related to a field you are passionate about. For instance, Python for artificial intelligence.
  • Tools
    • Kickstarter: Helps bring your creative projects to life. You can join Kickstarter to launch a project or to help back others’ projects. This platform is a great way to get your ideas into the world, see if there is a demand for your product and then get help with funding! Since Kickstarter’s launch in 2009, 18 million people have backed projects.
  • Success story
    • Flappy Bird: an extremely simple yet addictive game that went viral and at one point was earning its creator $50,000 a day from ad revenue.
    • Indie Hackers for success stories about people that created software revenue business. There you can find guidance and revenue number sharings.

5 Drop Shipping/eBay Seller/FBA

These options imply shipping goods from a manufacturer or wholesaler directly to a customer instead of to the retailer who took the order. One of them is FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon). It is worth noting that most products on Amazon are sold by independent sellers.

Amazon handles the storage, packing, and delivery. It is highly convenient because around the world Amazon has more than 185 fulfillment centers summing up to more than 150 million square feet of storage space.

  • Rewards
    • Once you create your Amazon account you could use the FBA Revenue Calculator for detailed revenue on specific products.
  • Time
    • Can turn active. Be careful to set it up in a passive way.
    • Do proper research for high demanding products:
      • Identify a few unique and profitable products that you want to sell. Those should be products having demand but not usually available at offline retail stores.
      • Find and reach those products’ suppliers or manufacturers.
      • Keep in mind that you aim to buy low and sell high to get at least an acceptable profit margin.
      • List those products on Amazon using your seller account and set the target prices. Prices should be competitive to similar products to be desirable and generate sales.
      • Clearly state the products titles and descriptions on the page listing those items. Keep in mind that you want to use commonly searched keywords. Those should also encourage people to make a purchase like “best oven”.
    • Better to find a dedicated course as it is a long-time investing activity.
  • Risk
    • If no appropriate effort was allocated to finding high demanding products, one could end up buying products that cannot be easily sold.
  • Money needed
    • Can be low if you focus on finding demanding products
  • Tools
    • Oberlo, Shopify

6 E-book Sell Online/Publish Blank Book

E-books can be sold at low prices and become accessible to millions of people. Also, potential customers just need a laptop, phone, tablet, or smartphone to read it; making them reachable by the masses.

To write an e-book, identify the problem, explain in the e-book how to solve and charge money for selling that knowledge. That would be non-fiction (e.g. (autobiographical) but you could also create fiction books if you are creative to think about a story.

To facilitate the writing process, start with the final goal. Then decompose it into 10-15 things (chapters). After focusing on 1 chapter per week or month.

  • Rewards
    • By creating how-to e-books on popular niches and marketing them, you could build a fan base of loyal readers.
    • Go with what sells more frequently. Follow the trend in topics.
    • Match a topic to write about (niche) with your passion. Maybe a non-fiction educational e-book could spark your motivation.
  • Time
    • To provide value with content: You can quickly write an e-book. But one that provides more value might take more time invested in research.
  • Risk
    • E-books have a competitive market.
  • Money needed
    • To reduce money in publishing, use Self-publishing in Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.
  • Tools
    • Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.

7 Flip retail products

You might already know a certain product or product category better than most people. It is certainly related to your passion or habit. For instance, a game console or smartphone. It can be combined with Dropshipping (previously discussed in this article).

  • Rewards
    • Your profits will be the difference between the purchase and sale prices.
  • Time
    • To find the good products to buy and list them online to sell them. To reduce it, you could try to find or establish a contact helping you to get products that few other people can access at such low prices.
  • Risk
    • If you are not familiar enough with the chosen products you might end up buying at too high prices that will be sold only at a loss level.
  • Money needed
    • A certain amount is needed to buy the products initially.
  • Tools
    • eBay Seller Center.
    • Amazon Seller Central.

8 License Music/Audio tracks/Podcast/ Buy royalties

Music and audio tracks, in general, are used in YouTube videos, computer games, movie trailers, TV adverts, corporate promotional videos, soundtracks, and many other contexts like wedding videos. Consider joining a Performing Rights Organization (PRO) to properly license audios. Websites like ASCAP, BMI, or SESAC are vital for that.

  • Rewards
    • For podcasts, the CPM (cost per mille, thousand, listeners) is a key ratio. You could get $18 for a 30-second ad per thousand listeners (CPM) or $25 for a 60-second ad per thousand listeners (CPM).
      • If you aim to get $100, let’s assume your podcast has 1,000 downloads per episode and it is a weekly podcast. So, if you place a 30 seconds ad, it would take 6 weeks to reach $108.
    • Other alternatives to podcasts are the same as blogging (previously described) because it becomes a platform to connect with an audience.
    • There are over a billion podcast downloads on Apple Podcasts.
  • Time
    • Research: research your audience and find out what kind of content is trending. From there, you can quickly start building your portfolio of tunes. It takes many months to reach a podcast that is listened to by thousands of people as they take time to judge whether you provide value consistently. Only at that point, does it become profitable.
  • Risk
    • Not really passive income. The difficult part is to get the formula that works. Then you can repeat it. Even once you have established an audience, if your topic is a passing trend, people might end up leaving your podcast and start listening to someone else’s.
  • Money needed
    • For buying equipment for podcast recording (because the audio quality matters a lot) or musical instruments. For more money-intensive activities, you could buy royalties.
  • Tools
    • Premium Beat.
    • Epidemic Sound.
    • Royalty exchange.
    • You can license your tracks out on platforms like SoundCloud and Audiosocket.
  • Success story: Dream Girl podcast
    • It has 200-500 downloads per episode after 5 months of launching. She started with no audience.
    • At the end of 2021, she could expect she reaches $100/month
    • Its creator, Dr. Sheen Gurrib, a graduate of both Oxford and Cambridge, is a social entrepreneur and podcaster. She is the co-founder of ReShape Co, a young, not-for-profit consulting company. ReShape Co enlists students and graduates to carry out non-profit consultancy work for SMEs, charities, and NGOs.

9 Print on Demand Online Store. Design T-shirts

Ideal for creative people and everyone who likes designing.

  • Rewards
    • Print on demand allows you to sell your custom graphics on products like t-shirts and other clothes, mugs, canvases, phone cases, bags, and more. You could even create your own branded products.
  • Time
    • Requires graphic design skills. If you already have the design skills it is even faster to start creating high eye-catching designs.
  • Risk
    • Almost no risk. Except for the time needed to start creating designs.
  • Money needed
    • Low to no money expenses to start. For inspiration and design courses, it is possible to pay or learn from free content online.
  • Tools
    • To create designs: CafePress, Canva, Teespring (good to start and can also ship products).
    • To sell designs: Etsy, SendOwl, and Shopify.
    • To pack and ship (same designs could be sold on many platforms): Amazon Merch (free to start), RedBubble (non-exclusive),  Printful

There are many common printables such as

  • Calendars
  • Checklists
  • Craft guides
  • Decorations
  • Greeting Cards
  • Hobby guides
  • Invitations
  • Meal plans
  • Organizers
  • Planners
  • Recipe cards
  • Social media templates
  • Spreadsheets templates
  • Wall Art

10 Sell Info and Digital products

This covers everything that is not included in the previous idea (designs that can be printed) and the next one (courses that are information products. You could partner with someone who can promote your products and build more to sell more.

  • Rewards
    • Profits can be high as you are able to set the price for your products. Your products can be linked to your passion and you can share them through videos, e-books, checklists, and audio files. For instance, Traf sells an iPhone icon pack for $28. It made $100k in a week because lots of people were willing to buy those icons.
  • Time
    • You could create bundles of courses and discounts to avoid the time needed to actually create the info or digital products themselves (in this case, courses).
  • Risk
    • Of creating info products without a demand. To counteract it, sell the idea before working on it. To achieve that, ask people what type of content they would like to see and create it. Survey the audience and do what they want.
  • Money needed
    • Low money requirement, mostly time is needed to create the info products or improve them.
  • Tools
    • Etsy for digitized artwork (e.g. monthly planners)
    • Shopify store for digital products

Among the many options for digital products, you could consider:

  • Adobe photoshop brushes, backgrounds, actions, and textures
  • Banners
  • Branding graphics
  • Branding kits
  • Budget worksheets
  • Coloring pages
  • Cookbooks
  • Courses
  • Crochet patterns
  • Cupcake toppers
  • Digital paper
  • Emergency contacts sheets
  • Fitness tracker
  • Fonts
  • Greeting cards
  • Inspirational wall quotes
  • Invitations
  • Knitting patterns
  • Labels
  • Marketing materials
  • Mock-ups
  • Organization printables
  • Party decorations
  • Party props
  • Party signs
  • Personalized stationery
  • Pre-made logos
  • Printable flashcards
  • Printable planners
  • Printable wall art
  • Resumes
  • Sewing patterns
  • Stickers
  • svg’s
  • Tee-shirt designs
  • Vector designs
  • Wedding signs
  • Wine labels

11 Sell courses/Virtual summits

You might be already sharing your knowledge. It was probably a Facebook post, YouTube channel, blog or directly helping friends and family. Every live teaching generates active income. Either it is helping, one on one tutoring, teaching to small groups, or providing masterminds online to thousands of people.

You could convert this into a passive income source by packaging your ideas, knowledge, and skills into a digital course. As the package is planned and recorded, it avoids the “on” and “off” moments of direct coaching or teaching as well as the fear of missing important information. Also, courses typically include downloadable templates to help students apply the knowledge learned.

All free content initially shared can be given as proof of your expertise. And can be then linked to a paid course to take further action for the next level of understanding.

If you have already written a book, this is an even better option, as you could publicize your previous works and successes. Hence raising your profile online.

This can be combined with other ideas in this article such as blogging and video creation as they are ways to build an audience and share content with them.

But also with affiliate marketing, as your students trust you and are likely to follow your recommendations to buy something. You can also reach arrangements with other websites to let them publicize your content in exchange for some commissions.

  • Rewards
    • Create several packages or virtual summits at different price points. For instance: live presentations that are recorded, Q&A during the event, and only recordings offered as replays
    • Can be complemented by selling an e-book as a “companion” to the course.
    • Other monetization methods include AdSense, affiliates, and memberships.
  • Time
    • It can be challenging to get visitors to a page where courses are sold. That means more time is needed to build an audience.
    • Easier to maintain: Just update courses once in a while. Make sure traffic stays stable.
  • Risk
    • People might not want to pay. To counteract that, use Skillshare. It lets educators avoid charging people and still get rewards if videos are uploaded to Skillshare and shared.
    • Coaching to reduce the risk of offering courses without a demand. Use coaching to get feedback for the course with elements that worked for many people.
  • Money needed
    • There is no need to pay for a course on how to create and sell courses online. There are many resources available online. That said, a well-organized course with proven results by many students can help you reach revenue faster.
  • Tools
    • Coursera, Kajabi, Podia, Teachable, and Udacity.
    • Udemy: A Udemy instructor can keep 97% of a student’s payment if the student used the instructor’s referral link.
    • Skillshare
      • To earn $100, a course needs 1700 watch time or 28 hours. So, for a 1-hour course, 28 students taking that course would be needed.
      • An existent audience is convenient because people already trust you.
      • Skillshare also prioritizes good content as it gets recommended even by Skillshare
  • Success stories
    • Online guides like Securityguardtraininghq.com
    • For Ali, now in SkillShare, courses make between $60,000 to $65,000/month in passive income
    • Sumit Bansal, Founder of Trump Excel: He started sharing his knowledge about Excel and got a lot of traffic on his page every month. His YouTube channel has more than 110k subscribers. He uses Teachable to earn from his knowledge sharing

12 Sell stock photos

If you love taking photos, you might have already refined your photo shooting skills. Many websites could help you publish your photos online. So you could end up being paid for doing something you already do and love.

  • Rewards
    • Passive income every time someone buys your photo.
  • Time
    • Low if you already have the habit of enjoying taking photos. If not, following a course might improve your photo shooting skills.
  • Risk
    • Maybe too much time or money invested in accessories does not justify the earnings done.
  • Money needed
    • Low if you already have a camera or phone.

The websites below will do the marketing of your photos for you. You just have to upload them to the platforms and when they are bought, you receive the rewards:

  • Adobe Stock,
  • Alamy, (earn money whenever someone uses your photos), your own website.
  • DepositPhotos
  • Getty Images
  • iStock Photo
  • Pexels
  • Pixabay
  • Shutterstock
  • SmugMug Pro
  • Stocksy
  • Twenty20

13 Social Media Influencer/Sponsored Posts/Paid Community

According to FoxBusiness, influencers take on average from $30,000 to $100,000 per year. And users with more than 1 million followers can earn $100,000 per post on YouTube and Instagram according to Vox.

The active part is to publish content that generates engagement with an audience. Then, it can be combined with affiliate marketing to make more passive revenues. Influencers publish their affiliate links recommending buying products and services, downloading apps, visiting specific websites, or sign-up for services.

You can start sharing content on your preferred platform (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, etc) about a topic you are passionate about and that you know.

The constant content creation will attract progressively an audience. It applies also to topics like sports, home improvement, general culture, etc.

Then consider hosting events as an influencer, creating a kit with social media accounts, and even offering a paid membership if you already have an audience. In a paid membership, a subscription lets people access content (with teaser information).

  • Rewards
    • Rates for sponsored posts depend on your number of followers
    • Could be possible to start a site with $10/month and with 100 clients it would make $1,000 per month.
  • Time
    • High. As new content should be uploaded.
    • Recurring revenue is not necessarily passive as you could keep working on uploading content.
    • Once you get the formula that works, it is easier to maintain. Provide you keep showing up with content.
  • Risk
    • Of losing the time invested.
  • Money needed
    • None.
  • Tools
    • Instagram: focus on a niche, add email in the account to be easily contacted. See “Instagram engagement” as the key ratio
    • Patreon
  • Success stories
    • Hanna Witton: She has 600 Patreon payers and estimates someone could get between $2,000 to $5,000 per month.
    • Ness Labs earns $9/month per client. It started in 2018. The paid membership started in March 2020 to get recurring revenue and has in 2021 more than 30,000 newsletter subscribers.
    • The highest-paid social media influencer up to 2020 according to Fox Business is Kylie Jenner. She is 23 in 2021 and has become a media mogul owning a huge make-up business. She earns more than $1 million per sponsored Instagram post and has 255 million followers up to August 2021. And she is not the only one. Dwayne Johnson (“The Rock”) is also earning $1 million per Instagram post according to BBC.

14 Video creation/selling. YouTube channel

Videos can be about a topic previously covered that you know. You could for instance create a YouTube channel with reviews of Udemy courses and affiliate links in Udemy because you have tested many courses and know which works better. In general, people prefer a 5 minutes video to a set of written instructions in a blog

  • Rewards
    • Through ads. Previous videos you recorded will generate most of the revenue. 55% of the amount paid for an ad is given to the video creator.
    • Channel paid memberships such as YouTube Premium Revenue. Only with recurrent monthly payments, your followers could access special content you create.
    • There are other ways to monetize a YouTube channel like merchandising, and reviews, but are not exactly passive. For instance, people could pay to get their message or merchandising highlighted by you.
  • Time
    • Lots of effort upfront creating videos. Getting the first 1,000 subscribers is more difficult than keeping them.
  • Risk
    • The video creation market is still not so competitive. Great video content is scarce compared to text-based.
  • Money needed
    • Almost none. Maybe spending on a course could improve your earning potential.
    • For YouTubers reaching significant revenues: in the US as a single filer, it is possible to create an S corporation and avoid double taxation (individual and enterprise).
  • Tools
    • YouTube: Needs 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time. For a Youtuber like Ali Abdaal, it took 6 months and 52 videos to get that and he states that on average, 90 videos are needed to reach eligibility for YouTube Ads.
      • As general useful advice, you could do videos once a week for at least 2 years to keep the channel on track.
      • Example of a channel with $2 per thousand views (CPM) and 50k views: let’s assume 1 video is published per week and the video gets 12,500 views. Then you can earn $100 a month.
      • For Ali Abdaal, on average, for a given channel, 20% of their subscribers are the number of views. So, 60k subscribers would be needed for $100/month.
    • Keywords Everywhere: To know how many people are looking for a topic you want to create a video about.

What is the next step?

Pick the idea you liked the most and apply it consistently for many months. To properly differentiate passive and active income, check our article “How to make passive income”. And if you want more ways to increase your revenue, check our article “How to make money online”.

If you are interested in making money online, it is really important to invest in a good laptop. If your budget is not enough you may check Abunda for laptop financing.

Alcides Otiniano

Frugality and prosperity are not opposites but complementary. We all can be frugal and prosper. That’s why the author has created the Prosperous Frugal site. There you will find related articles such as How to make passive income.

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