How to Earn Money Online

How to earn money online?
That must be the question I'm most often asked by students, friends and acquaintances alike and that many 'online gurus' claim to have the answer to. And while they make it sound like the Holy Grail or something very close to it, it's not actually that difficult. Just as in the 'real world', earning money online is all about offering a product or service that your customers are willing to buy.

The internet has an added advantage: you're not restricted to selling 'hard' goods. You can simply 'sell' information. That's sell as in share: your knowledge, your skills, even your memories, your opinions, your passion. On top of that, 'virtual' products - ebooks, audio and video downloads, desktop wallpapers, electronic greeting cards, graphic products - are growing immensely in popularity, letting you put your creativity to endless use to earn money online.

How to earn money online?

There are numerous ways to make an income online and if you have a successful - indexed and well-trafficked - website, you can make use of one or more of these.

Following the old adage that it's not safe to put all your eggs into one basket I recommend that you choose at least 2 or 3 different monetisation strategies for your online business site. That way, should one of them fail - for example if one of your suppliers ceases trading - then only a small part of your online income will be affected.

Here are a few of your options. Click on the ones that interest you for more detailed information on how they work.

  • display Google Adsense adverts on your site and earn money whenever a visitor clicks on one of the ads

  • join an affiliate program and recommend other merchants' products to your visitors. Earn a commission if one of the visitors you've referred buys that product, fills in a survey or clicks on a link.  Find out here:  how affiliate programs work, how to choose the right affiliate program, where to find suitable affiliate programs and tips and tricks to improve your conversion rates 
  • sell electronic products - such as e-books, mp3s or videos - that you have either created yourself or that you offer on behalf of another merchant.

  • sell third party advertising directly on your site

  • extend your existing business onto the web and sell hard goods online. Ship them yourself or engage a fulfilment house to do the shipping for you.

  • create your own gifts using information already on your site and sell them either directly or through another online store

  • act as agent for other businesses and promote their product or service. Earn referrer or finder fees when you refer customers.

  • Promote your own services to local and international customers.

  • Use your well-trafficked site to maximise income from your internet auction business

How to earn money online?

Just choose the options that suit your core business. As always, the key is a well-trafficked website. Once you've created that, you're only limited by your own creativity when it comes to earning an income.

Knowing your visitors, knowing what they're looking for - and giving them precisely what they want - is the key to your success. If you get this right, you'll never want for traffic to your site. And if you have traffic ... well, I'm repeating myself.

And if you need advice, training, or an extra pair of hands - please check out my services page to see how I help other businesses.