One upside of the pandemic has been the shift to online business. Thanks to all the advancements in technology, you can make money from the comfort of your home, without having to set a foot outside. The benefits of a lifestyle like that are too many—from location independence to flexibility in schedule and the freedom to scale up your business rapidly. Let’s look at five ways to make a living online.
1. Launch an Ecommerce Store
Ecommerce companies have been around for close to forty years, and with each passing year, the industry’s only growing larger. With more consumers switching to online means of shopping, right now is an excellent time to venture into the ecommerce space and launch an online store.
Based on certain reports, around 32% consumers in the US receive one or more Amazon packages in a week. And 10% consumers receive over three packages every week. Amazon’s proliferation across the globe and the quality of their services have resulted in them having over 300 million active customer accounts worldwide. People are now a lot more comfortable with shopping for products online, even if it’s an expensive product, like a TV or washing machine.
Once you’ve figured out what product categories you want to sell in, you’ll have to find an ecommerce platform for your online store. You’ll find many options in the market, like Shopify, BigCommerce, and others. Other marketplaces include Amazon and eBay, but you’re likely to face stiff competition on these platforms.
Keep in mind that the profit margin depends on the type of product you’re selling. On platforms like Amazon, you can check how much the fees to sell are for each product category and you can estimate how much you’d be making per sale.
2. Try Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is a super popular method of making money on the internet and you don’t have to create and manufacture your own products for this. The first step in affiliate marketing is to sign up for an affiliate program. Then, you have to search and find someone’s product to promote to your audience. The product could be physical or digital, like an online course, an application, or an ebook.
Once you select a product, you’ll receive a referral link and for every sale that happens through your link, you’ll earn a commission. To promote affiliate products, you could set up a blog and create SEO content around the right keywords to bring in organic traffic. There are plenty of website performance tools online that’ll help you increase the organic traffic to your website. Alternatively, you could promote affiliate products through social networks or your email list subscribers.
The affiliate marketing business model is such that its startup cost is very low; the only things you’d have to pay for are the web hosting, your website’s domain name, and the email marketing software. Based on a report by the SaaS Scount, brands spend around $12 billion every year on affiliate marketing, a figure that’s believed to grow by 10% in the coming years.
If executed properly, affiliate marketing is known to create a lot of wealth. Generally, online stores that are successful with affiliate products tend to release their own products to make more money from the same amount of traffic.
3. Experiment With Dropshipping
Dropshipping is the process of selling physical goods online without keeping any inventory yourself. Since maintaining goods physically takes more money and requires financial risk, dropshipping is an excellent option for those who want to venture into ecommerce safely.
The dropshipping process begins with the customer ordering a product through your ecommerce website. Once you receive the order, you forward it to the manufacturer and they ship the product directly to the customer. It’s straightforward, but the disadvantage of dropshipping is the low-profit margins and the limited control you’ll have when it comes to the supply chain. Nonetheless, the market is growing fast and is believed to hit $557.9 billion by 2025.
4. Set Up Your Own Blog
If you enjoy writing and sharing your insights with others, you’ll want to consider starting your own blog. A blog by itself is not a business model, but it enables you to grow your audience base and once you have that, you can begin selling your services and products to them. Not just that, you could even promote affiliate products through your blog and run sponsored campaigns with other brands and influencers.
5. Offer Freelance Services
You could offer freelance writing or web design services online. If you’re new to these fields, you could learn the basics through online learning platforms and build on your skills. Once you’re more confident, you could begin working on portfolio samples and set up a website to showcase your work to clients (or use a portfolio website).
Alternatively, you could check out freelance platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, and 99Designs to find gigs and grow your client base. Freelancing comes with its challenges, but with the right opportunities, you can benefit from geographical independence and a flexible schedule.