By: Claire Makoni
Earn Songwriting Royalties
If you love to write music, you can create passive income by recording your songs and then publishing them through a variety of channels. You earn royalties anytime your music is played on streaming services like Apple Music, or Spotify, or played on the radio. You can even license your music for TV, movies, and videos without the backing of a major record label.
Purchase Music Royalties
Perhaps your talent isn’t to write music. That’s ok, you can still get into the music royalty game by purchasing the rights to song catalogues owned by other artists. Royalty Exchange is an online auction that allows you to bid on existing music catalogues. These are songs that are already earning regular, passive income for their current owners. When you purchase music royalties, you’re buying the future cash flow, which is purely passive income.
Photographers can build passive income by selling stock photos online. You’ll need to produce lots of content to earn a decent amount of money, but it can be a nice supplement to other, more labor-intensive work, like wedding or family photography. One benefit to stock photo licensing is that you can sell the same pictures to many different buyers. There is no shortage of stock photo websites where you can sell your work. Dreamstime and Snapwire are just two of the more popular stock photo sites out there.
Record an Audiobook
One of the best ways for content creators to increase their income is by releasing their content in as many formats as possible. For example, if you’ve written a paperback book or even an ebook, you’ll want to consider recording an audiobook version. There is no shortage of people who prefer listening to books instead of reading them. You can record the audio yourself, or pay someone else to do it for you. Once your audiobook is ready to go, it can be available for purchase online for years, making it the ideal passive income source.
Buy and Sell Domain Names
Buying and selling domain names is a bit like trading on the stock market. The goal is to buy low and sell high, but there can be some risk involved. There are people who earn good money buying domain names that they believe will increase in value over time, with the hopes of selling at a profit.
Start a Blog
Over time, it’s possible to create multiple passive income streams with a blog, through affiliate marketing, or display advertising, for example. But building a blog from scratch is anything but passive. You’ll need to be consistent in creating new content, and spend time promoting your blog. One of the best things about blogging is the low barrier of entry. If you have a computer and a wifi connection, you can get started for as little as a few dollars per month.
Start a Podcast
It seems everyone has a podcast these days, and while many people do it out of pure enjoyment, there’s a lot of money that can be made. As you build a reliable following, you can begin selling advertising via sponsorships to brands that wish to get in front of your audience. Make no mistake, there’s a lot of work involved in finding guests and conducting interviews, but the opportunity to build a passive income stream is there.
Start a YouTube Channel
If you can consistently create videos that people want to watch, you can build an audience on Youtube. This is important because, with an audience, you can begin to make money, by joining the YouTube Partner Program. Most of your earnings will come from ads, which are aired within your video content, however, there are more ways to make money. YouTube can also drive traffic to your website and social media channels, making passive income opportunities endless.
Sell Digital Products/Downloadables
Thousands of people earn passive income by creating digital products that people can download and use. From spreadsheets to productivity tools, calendars, and checklists, the possibilities are endless. Once you’ve created your winning product, you can make it available for download on your own website, or through a third-party platform.
Develop an Online Course
If you have expertise in a specific area, rest assured there’s someone out there willing to pay you for your knowledge. You can create an ebook on the topic, or develop an online course, and then sell it on your own website, or on an online learning marketplace like Udemy. No skill is too small to share with others. You could sell a course on creating a killer resume, starting a podcast, or how to travel hack a trip to Europe. With online courses, most of the hard work happens early on, when you’re creating the content. From there, with an effective marketing strategy, you’ll have yourself a nice, passive income stream.
Run Website Display Ads
If you have your own website, you can sign up to have ads displayed within the content on your site. The most well-known ad service is Google Adsense. Adsense displays ads that are relevant to your site content and that match your visitor’s preferences. When guests engage with an ad, you make money. Also, the higher your site traffic, the higher your income.
If you have your own blog or website, one of the best ways to make passive income is through affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing involves promoting someone else’s product or service, and earning a commission whenever a sale is generated directly from your recommendation. The most well-known affiliate program may be the one run by online retail giant Amazon, but there are thousands of other companies with programs of their own. Affiliate income takes time to build, but if you’re successful, it can be one of the best ways to make passive income.
Dropshipping is a form of e-commerce where the seller doesn’t hold the product, instead, it’s shipped to the customer directly from the supplier. The seller’s job is to find products to buy at a wholesale price, and then sell them at the retail price, by advertising them through an e-commerce store, like Shopify. When orders are placed, they go directly to the supplier who ships the product to the customer. The seller profits from the spread between the retail and wholesale price. Dropshipping has become very competitive, but if you can find a product that people want, and sell it at a profit, there’s lots of passive income to be made.
Learn to Outsource
If you’re an entrepreneur, chances are you have a tendency to want to control all aspects of your business. After all, no one else understands it as you do, nor is anyone else as invested as you are. But the problem with doing everything yourself is that the money you make becomes anything but passive.