When you read websites on making money online they tend to only really focus on one main method of doing so - running a website. While the exact monetization of that website might vary and they recommend different ways of converting visitors into cash, ultimately the advice is the same: build a website, add content regularly and then put PPC advertising/affiliate links on it.
However this is far from being the only way to make money online and while it's potentially a very satisfying and reliable way to generate passive income, it also takes a long time and requires a lot of luck and perseverance if you're going to succeed.
Here then we will look alternative ways you can make money online, many of which are much faster or require a lot less luck to be successful.
Sell an App
With the success of smartphones like the Android and iPhone, selling an app is now a very real route to making a lot of money. 80,000 new Android devices are activated every day, and if you consider how long Android has been gaining momentum for that's a huge potential market for an app. All you need is a good idea and some basic coding knowledge and you can join in on this gold rush.
Another thing that has caught on in a big way lately is e-books. Whether you want to sell solely through Kindle, or look at selling PDFs from your own site or using other stores such as iTunes, this is can potentially be just as lucrative as selling the apps.
There are a number of services that you can provide entirely online and as the web provides you with such a convenient way to reach a wide market, and to communicate with clients you can create a very profitable business this way. Of course you need a skill you can sell, but there are lots of options here whether you want to be a content writer, a website designer, an SEO expert, a consultant, an editor or something else entirely. There's even work out there for composers.
Sell a Physical Product
There are many ways you can sell physical products online these days that don't necessarily require getting lots of funding or setting up your own manufacturing process/ordering lots of stock. Funding of course isn't necessarily a problem if you opt to use sites like Kickstarter to raise the money, while you can sidestep manufacturing and buying lots of stock by using 3D printing services like Shapeways. This way all you need is a design and you can then have it manufactured and printed off as and when people order it.
There are plenty of ways you can run a business online where you are purely a business man (or woman) and don't have to 'create' anything at all. For instance rather than selling your content, you could just find writers and buy their writing to sell on, or you could provide SEO for a company and simply pay another slightly smaller SEO company a lower fee in order to do the heavy lifting for you. Connecting people and seeing opportunities is the basis of any good business model, just as it is in the offline world.
Article Contribution: The article is written by Sara Brown, a business expert and adviser for many top companies. She also shares her useful knowledge on business and economy via her business blog. She works as a business consultant for Berkeley Soucring Group, plastic injection molding company.