Don’t let your job or industry limit how much money you can make. If you’ve ever thought about how you can bring in some extra income on the side without getting a second job, then you’re not alone! There’s an entire niche out there surrounding the concept of how to generate passive income – setting up ways to automatically generate money and cash flow using systems that require as minimal effort from you as possible.
Regardless of whether or not you may think this sounds too good to be true, there are thousands of people out there from a variety of backgrounds that do this, along with dozens of great books and blogs that describe exactly how to achieve it.
For a few years now, I’ve been obsessed with this concept, and have been experimenting with different ways I can make my own passive income.
- First, I started off earning a few hundred dollars by signing up for some banking promotions, credit card reward programs, and competing paid surveys online.
- Then last year, I finally started to see some income in the thousands being generated from my blog, My Money Design. I was on a roll!
- Now, my new goal this year is to go from four-digit to five-digit income!
Although it will take some effort, here are four ways I plan to accomplish this:
Continue To Develop My Current Blog
It was only a year and half ago that my blog started with $58 in registration and shared hosting costs, and not much else. It took almost 6 months before I even had one real comment. But persistence triumphs all. I did a lot of research, tested a lot of ideas, and networked with a lot of other bloggers. It also didn’t hurt to read all those income reports from the more well-established blogs and feel inspired to keep pushing on until I was at the level they had obtained.
Now that I know what I know, I plan to leverage that knowledge as much as possible this year. I see the largest income potential coming from affiliate advertising, and here’s a basic strategy for passive income via affiliate marketing:
- Research carefully selected and supportive long-tail keyword phrases for my niche.
- Write high quality, authoritative and original posts around those keywords.
- Position those posts well by increasing my website’s stats, such as Google PageRank, Domain/Page Authority, link juice, etc.
- Spend some time back-linking in an effort to boost those ranks.
- Get those posts found using natural, organic traffic.
- Place relevant affiliate advertising within the context of articles that experience high search volume.
Build A Niche Site
Using that same model I just described above for my blog, there’s really no reason I couldn’t diversify my efforts and develop a special niche site that will focus on a very specific topic. If done correctly, this site would be built so that it:
- has great content and SEO to bring in natural organic traffic,
- leverages my existing contacts and relationships to build links,
- requires little to no maintenance by me, and
- produces a steady stream of income without any interaction on my part
Fortunately I have already started this project with my site IRA vs 401k Central, and I am continuing to develop it as we speak. There is still a great deal to accomplish in terms of SEO and link building, but my optimism is high!
Write An E-Book
Writing an eBook is another of my ambitions to try out in 2013. I’ve seen a great deal of these on Amazon as well as on other personal blog sites. I’ve got at least 2 ideas that I think would make great topics, and I could probably use a few of my older blog posts to get a jump start on the content.
Although there would be a significant amount of work to do in the beginning, once the project is complete, the actual sales would basically be completely passive and I could utilize affiliate marketing to increase my exposure and sales. By offering other bloggers a percentage of the sales to advertise my eBook, I could exponentially increase my reach.
Invest in Dividend Stocks
Dividend stocks have become one of my favorite targets for investing. Although in most cases the actual dividend payment of the stock is quite low and requires a great deal of capital before you start to earn anything substantial (for example, $300K = $1,000 per month at a 4% yield), I do see a huge advantage to investing in them:
- This type of income is truly passive. It requires absolutely no effort from me accept for, once a year, when I re-evaluate my portfolio.
- I’m in the camp that believes in investing in best-in-class companies, such as Apple, Google, JPMorgan, Goldman Sachs, General Electric, BlackRock, Exxon Mobil, Berkshire Hathaway, Boeing, Pfizer, IBM, and Siemens. And if you can pick large cap dividend payers with higher yields, that tells me that they are likely under-valued and have the strength and integrity to raise the stock price up!
This year I’ve got a modest amount invested into a portfolio that I believe will have some pretty stable returns. This area of my passive income is especially important to me because I believe it holds the key to sustainable early retirement (before I can dip into retirement accounts that require me to be age 59-1/2).
What Could You Be Doing?
These are just a few of the ways that I plan to increase my passive income this year. There are lots of other ways that we didn’t even touch on such as rental income, selling eProducts, business investments, etc. Whatever it is you think you’d like to try, make sure that you actually DO give it a try. Don’t wait or make up a lot of excuses why you can’t. If you don’t do anything, then you won’t make a thing. But if you at least give it a shot, then the sky is the limit!
This post was a guest contribution from MyMoneyDesign.com. My Money Design is a blog that is all about perfecting your “money design” – the way you plan, invest, and use your money to help make your life better and bring you closer to achieving your financial goals.