Passive income refers to regular revenue earned outside of an annual salary from employment or contract work. Examples include renting out property to earn monthly rent or writing a blog to earn ad revenue from clicks.
While it requires upfront investment of time and energy, successful passive income streams do not require you to actively trade your time for money as you would in a traditional 9-to-5 job. Instead, passive income allows you to earn cash flow while you engage in activities unrelated to the income stream itself in your day-to-day.
Passive income is not a “get-rich-quick” scheme. It takes significant effort, strategy, patience, time, and upkeep to reap the rewards and enjoy the payoffs. That’s not to say it’s not worth it. If others can do it, so can you.
Do you have a passion you want to share with others? Blogging and YouTube provide platforms to monetize your interests. Popular niches include fitness, health, personal finance, and self-improvement, which never cease to attract viewers as people seek to better themselves. You can turn your audience into a loyal customer base through affiliate marketing and sponsorships.
Pro: Online content creation has low barriers to entry as you can use your existing resources to provide value to others right away. Building an audience can lead to even more income streams down the line.
Risk: You’ll need to invest in learning new skills, like editing, SEO, and design. This takes time and long-term commitment, which may include the constant pressure to produce fresh output with little reward at the outset.
Once you grow your following, participate in affiliate marketing. Include links to products and services from companies with affiliate programs, like Amazon, and market those links to your audience. Whenever someone makes a purchase from clicking on your link, you’ll earn a small commission.
Pro: Dropping a link to your audience on your blog, YouTube, social media channels, and email list is a straightforward process.
Risk: You’ll need to have built an audience and provide links related to your niche and interests to start seeing any significant earnings.
Digital products are non-physical, online assets, including e-books, guides, templates, and other downloadable files, often formatted via PDF. People who start online businesses or need design templates, for example, turn to platforms like Etsy and Amazon for downloadable resources that will help them learn or meet their needs.
Pro: Digital products require a one-time investment, so once it’s created, you can sell an unlimited number of copies to reap recurring earnings. These assets can also funnel interest to other product offerings or services as part of your online business.
Risk: It can be difficult to regulate how your products are shared once purchased by a customer, so you risk having it accessible at no cost to others.
You might not have the luxury to rent out unused space, like a spare room on AirBnB. However, you could rent out underutilized yet common household items. Examples include Spinlister for your bike, BabyQuip for baby gear, Style Lend for clothing, Neighbor for storage space, and Idle for anything else. Go-to websites with longstanding users also include Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace.
Pro: Instead of leaving them unused in storage, monetize items that would be useful to others. Start small and see where the demand leads you.
Risk: Some of your property may get lost or damaged, so set up contracts to address these risks at the customers’ expense.
The other side of building wealth is to not only earn more, but also to spend less. Consider your necessary, recurring costs. What came up other than housing and groceries? Electricity bills.
Meltek helps you save money by reducing energy usage. When you sign up as New York resident, Meltek pays you to reduce energy use when the demand for electricity exceeds supply.
Pro: Power companies (e.g. Con Edison, PSEG Long Island, Orange & Rockland) would rather pay you to use less energy than fire up expensive Peaker Plants. When you reduce your energy consumption, you earn.
Risk: Rising inflation means your dollar doesn’t get stretched as far as it used to. With Meltek, you can earn money as you save energy.
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