25 Ideas for Making Money Being Independent
Here are 25 ideas for making money by being independent. No matter if you are unemployed, want to create extra income or are planning to escape from your cubicle, one of them will work for you.
But firstly, make following one thing very clear.
All meaningful ideas work, provided
You’re willing to invest some time and sacrifice things in making them work. You can’t get rich overnight – unless you win the lottery or marry a millionaire.
If you want to generate a stable income with the methods listed below, you need to think long term, at least 6 months.
Now, the 25 ideas for making money
An infoproduct (digital product) is information packaged and ready for download. This includes eBooks, online courses, music downloads, audiobooks, office files, PDF guides. It’s practically anything you can download.
Are you an expert in organizing events? Make a guide for planning exceptional parties. Do you like photography? Take a course to learn how to use a professional camera.
The key to making them work is to find a problem that many people have and solve it. They don’t require a large investment (the largest is time) and to sell them you can use applications like Gumroad or Ejunkie.
This method is for you if: you don’t have a lot of money to invest, you have time, knowledge in a specific area, you prefer not to deal directly with people, willing to learn how to advertise your product, you like the nomadic life and want to earn passive income.
2. Start a blog
A blog is a platform where you can post content. The most successful are those that target a specific audience or provide certain types of information.
Once you have a substantial content base, you can earn money through it by charging for advertising, selling infoproducts, services or consulting.
It’s not a quick way to make money, but in the long run it creates a stable income. The fun part is that you can automate it so you can enjoy on the beach (or wherever you want) and still get your money’s worth without lifting a finger. This is the reason it is considered a favorite money-making idea.
This method is for you if: You like to write, experiment, you are creative, you manage changes well, you are persevering, you can wait one or two years before your blog generates a stable income, you want to be independent of location.
There are many platforms which let you create blog such as WordPress or Sitebuild It.
3. Offer Consulting
A consultant is an expert who is paid to give his or her opinion.
If you have a busy cafeteria, you can charge someone who is just starting out to tell you what to do to make your cafeteria as popular as it is. If you are good at getting sponsorships, you can give consultaancy to NGOs in need of funding.
This method is for you if: You are an expert in something (enough to get paid), you like to deal with people and do networking.
4. Multilevel Sales
By entering one of these systems, you become an independent distributor of products for a company. Some ask you to buy a down payment on merchandise, which you get back as soon as you have sales. Examples of these companies are Mary Kay and Avon.
This is an excellent way to start your own business without having to make a large investment. In addition to having the backing of a well-known and stable brand, you usually receive training. The biggest profits from this method come from the affiliates you introduce to the business.
This method is for you if: You are good in sales or you would like to be good in sales, you like to deal with people and do networking, you need the security and support of a company.
5. Launch your Startup
Would you like to be the next Mark Zuckerberg? Launch a startup. The traditional business model says to make a detailed business plan to idealize how your business will work. In a startup, you start selling and worry about the rest later.
Uber, Dropbox, Amazon, iOS, Paypal, Google, Firefox, Twitter and LinkedIn started this way.
There are several initiatives where you can learn about the process, such as the Google Startup Weekends, which are organized in several countries.
This method is for you if: You are adventurous, you are not afraid of challenges, you are willing to try new things, you do not have much money to invest, you like to innovate, you are willing to fail until you find your gold mine.
6. Teaches classes, tutorials or workshops
Compared to the money-making ideas we’ve already seen, this is one of the most traditional. If you are knowledgeable about any subject, you can teach it to someone else.
Here you have several options. You can look for a job in a school and work for certain hours. You can also give classes at home or look for a space where you can do so, such as a community center.
7. Get a scholarship
If you’re a fan of books and school, you can look for a scholarship to get paid to study. Not fun?
Research existing offers from government offices in your country. Several have support to encourage local study. You can also check the embassies of foreign countries.
They are not difficult to obtain as long as you meet all the requirements they ask for. There are many scholarships that are wasted because nobody takes advantage of them.
This method is for you if: You like to study, want to travel, develop professionally, and have a good academic grade.
8. Get a prize
Similar to scholarships, but the awards are not necessarily academic. You can get them to do social projects, start your own business or create art works, for example.
Look for them in the different secretariats or government offices of your country. There are also several international organizations that provide them.
This method is for you if: You have the idea for a project and need financial support to carry it out.
9. Give lectures
If you like to speak in public you can give lectures on your area of expertise.
Start volunteering at local schools and colleges to gain some credibility. Once you have it, you can start charging for it.
This method is for you if: You like to speak in public, you are very energetic and motivational and know how to empathize with people.
10. Sell your own products
Bags, purses, cell phone cases, energy bars, crafts, clothes, shoes, anything you can create can be sold.
The most successful products are usually those that meet a basic need (food, health, personal hygiene) or those that complement existing products that everyone has (iPhone, computer, tennis converse).
It doesn’t necessarily have to be you who makes the products. If you have a good idea you can have it manufactured. You can sell locally or over the Internet.
This method is for you if: You are creative, have an entrepreneurial spirit, are willing to manage inventories and shipments or distribute your product locally.
11. Vending machines
They are used for candy, soft drinks, coffee, condoms, sanitary napkins, toothbrushes, even toilet paper. You can find them of all prices, sizes and varieties.
At first you need to make an investment. The important thing here is to find a location where people really need the product you are selling.
This method is for you if: You have some money to invest, you are looking for a method that does not require a lot of time, you are looking for ideas to earn money in a passive way without depending on the Internet.
12. Rent something
The first thing that comes to mind is a house, but you can also rent cars, professional audio-visual equipment, computers, bicycles, motorcycles, costumes, electronics, party dresses, anything.
Start with low inventory and increase as business grows. You will have to make an initial investment but then you don’t need much capital.
This method is for you if: You have a house, a car or something you don’t occupy and are a good manager.
13. Open an online store
You only need five minutes. to open an online store. Platforms like Amazon, Etsy or Mercado Libre make it very easy.
You can sell your own products or distribute someone else’s products. The important thing is to have a well-defined offer for a specific target audience.
This method is for you if: You like the nomadic life, you are willing to learn about internet marketing to advertise your shop.
14. Invest in the stock market
You do some research on some companies and buy some of the shares that seem to be the most profitable. If everything works well and the company increases in value, your shares do too and you get profits.
But it can also happen that the company loses value and you lose money. There are several sites for investing in the stock market on the Internet.
This method is for you if: You like to take risks, are willing to learn the basic rules, have some capital to invest (which you don’t need to eat or pay rent), like to do research and are passionate about finance.
15. Earn money online
If you have a computer and Internet access, you can earn money by answering surveys, testing products, doing translations, writing articles, answering questions, posting on forums, etc.
This method is for you if: You prefer to work for someone else, you like the nomadic life, you need ideas to make money quickly.
16. Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant is like a secretary, but works from home. They are usually hourly and receive a payout ranging from $5-$15. per hour.
It is a relatively new profession but it is in high demand and growing. The activities an assistant normally does are answering emails, writing documents, making phone calls, graphic design and dealing with clients.
This method is for you if: You prefer to work for someone else, you are organized and like office work but want freedom of time.
17. Make good use of your illustrations
If you like to draw or play with Photoshop you can sell t-shirts with your designs on sites like Threadless or Design By Humans. Check out Zazzle or CafePress, where you can customize just about anything you can think of. At Spoonflower you can customize fabric or gift wrap and sell them on demand.
The advantage of these sites is that they take care of the manufacturing and shipping of the products. You only design and receive sales commissions.
This method is for you if: You like to draw or design, you want to be nomadic.
18. Sell photos and vectors to image banks
Sites like Dreamstime or iStock allow you to sell high-resolution images.
First you make a request to apply. Once they accept you, you can upload your images. In addition to photos, you can contribute vectors or illustrations. Every time someone downloads one of your files you get a commission. Another idea to earn passive money!
This method is for you if: You like photography, have a camera with good resolution.
You can sell logos, business cards, letterheads, fonts, backgrounds, brushes and effects for Photoshop on sites like Creative Market and Brandcrowd.
They work just like image banks, where you get a commission every time someone buys your work.
This method is for you if: You know what PSD and Ai mean, you love design but you’re tired of dealing with customers.
20. Real Estate Agent
Your function is to promote the rental and sale of houses. For every one you place you get a commission.
This method has a learning curve and does not generate a predictable income, but can be very lucrative if administered well and also gives freedom of time.
This method is for you if: You are organized, you like to deal with people, you know something about administration.
21. Provide service
You can walk dogs, be a fashion consultant, pick up children from school, prepare romantic dinners at home, do the shopping for seniors, wash cars, organize parties, anything you can do for someone else is a service you can charge.
To begin with, you need nothing but willingness. Print flyers and call the people who might need you to get your first customers. In the long run, the service you offer can become a great company.
This method is for you if: You have some time available, you don’t have money to invest, there is something you enjoy doing but that causes a problem or takes up other people’s time.
Sites like Freelancer, Workana or Fiverr allow you to offer all kinds of services. The most common are graphic design, image editing, audio and video or writing, but there are also very specialized projects.
Visit one of these sites and find something you’d like to do. Create a profile and contact the interested party and tell them that you are the best person for the job. Normally you get paid per project.
This method is for you if: You have skill or knowledge in the areas that are required, you are looking for an extra income or something to do in your free time.
23. Teache via Skype
Whatever it is! You can teach languages, guitar playing, handicrafts. Skype is a great work tool.
This method is for you if: You like to teach but don’t want to tie yourself to a location, are willing to promote your service through local media or using the internet.
24. WWOOOF Woof!
This one’s not about dogs. WWOOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms) is a directory of organic farmers who give you lodging and food in exchange for working with them.
You don’t usually get paid but it’s a fun way to travel and learn new skills.
This method is for you if: You love mother earth, you want to learn to cultivate, travel and have adventures, you don’t mind the field work.
25. Home Caretaker
There are sites like Trusted Housesitter and Luxury Housesitting where people ask for people to keep their home while they are away. If you’re selected, you spend some time looking after someone else’s house. You usually have responsibilities that you would have in your own home such as paying bills, caring for pets or mowing the lawn. Depends on what the owner requests.
This is also not an idea to make money, but it can definitely save you money. You can travel to different places without having to spend money on accommodation. You could also find a house in your area and save yourself the rent.
This method is for you if: You want to travel and responsible enough to maintain a home.
So which of these methods are you going to try TODAY?