No one said entrepreneurship was going to be easy. If it was, everyone would be doing it. The truth is… running your own business and finding success is extremely tough! However, that doesn’t mean that there still aren’t ways for you to make some money on the side in your spare time.
Having made money online for the past 20 years, it’s always amazing to me with how often people will complain about their lives and their financial situations… yet they will still spend 5 to 10 hours per week watching meaningless television shows or just wasting. All of this time adds up and it could really be put to much better use — such as creating a side business, hobby or even just making a few dollars online in the process.
To get your mind juices flowing, today I’m going to share just a few ideas on how you can start making a few extra dollars online… while not needing to be a full-on entrepreneur or business in the process.
Become a Freelance Writer
An excellent way to make money on the side is through the use of content writing. While writing is something you might not be amazing at, content is needed for millions of sites around the internet. What’s even better is that there are content writing networks that many it easy for anyone to join, then start filling writing jobs posted on the site. Two of the most popular writing sites are TextBroker (see my interview with their CEO) and iWriter — both of which rate users based off their writing skills, which also influences how much money you can earn per word/article. In addition to the two main sites above, you can also check out these top writing job boards.
This is the perfect opportunity for anyone to start making money online, as there are no costs associated with getting paid to complete articles on these sites and you also don’t need to have a site. Last year I wanted to test both of these sites out as a writer and see if I could earn $1,000 in a month in my free time. I’m thrilled to say “mission accomplished” — however, I am extremely fast at writing and after haven written over 1,000 unique articles online, my average rating was quite high as well.
For anyone that is a decent writer, there is no reason why you couldn’t join both of these sites and earn $500+ per month. Once you’ve found success with getting paid to write articles for other sites, you should then think about becoming an independent writer with your own site, service, and rates.
Monetization Goal: Write at least one article per day at an average of $10 per article, and you will have $300+ in earnings per month.
Get Active in the Stock Market and Currency Trading
As often as you hear about people making millions of dollars in the stock market, there are even more untold stories of the complete opposite. However, some people have proven to find success with buying and selling stocks, financial markets and world currencies time and time again. One example of someone who has mastered this art is my friend Tim Sykes… who went on to turn his $12,000 investment into over $4 million dollars. Why is it “easy” for people to make money with a program like the one Tim offers? Simple… Tim’s subscribers get alerts every time he makes a trade. This means you just have to follow what he does, while also using your own money and stock trading accounts. This is called copy trading (a.k.a. social trading), there are other ways of trade automation solutions, check out this forex trading software for example. Anchor: check out this forex trading software.
Just like there are platforms for day trading in the stock market, there are also platforms for trading forex and world currencies as well. World currencies and forex is something that’s always been interesting to me, but not something I’ve actually tried. There are some cool resources out there, like ETX Capital, which is not only a platform for world/currency trading but also for further education in how people are making money with binary options, commodities, equities works.
The takeaway here is in most cases, anyone can get started in the stock market or currency trading with a low investment. Yes, it’s always going to be a risk, but if you follow the right people and study the market enough, you can make money on the side without it seeming like you are taking on a new job or project. Either way, who wouldn’t want to learn more about investing and world markets in the process?
Monetization Goal: Day trading in and out of stocks for quick 5-10% gains.
Start a Niche Blog and Let It Grow Over Time
With the focus of “not running a business” and making money on the side, we can also talk about the options for starting a website or blog of your own. If this is going to be done correctly, and with the goal of eventually making a few dollars with your site, a “niche site” is definitely the way to go.
The reason why a niche site would work extremely well is that you are going after a very tiny niche market that doesn’t have a ton of competition. The benefit here is that it will likely take less content, promotional efforts and work to get your site to rank.
A good example of this could be “promotional USB pen drives“. Yes, it’s a topic and product that businesses and brands spend millions of dollars on every year, but it’s also not the most fun or interesting topic to talk about. Type the phrase into Google and you will see many variations also appear, such as:
- custom usb drives no minimum
- custom usb drives for photographers
- custom shaped flash drives
- custom wood usb drives
What this tells us is that there is a demand in this market and people are very specific on what they are looking for. This serves as a great opportunity for you to build a site with only a few content pages, which could eventually rank on the first page of Google — with only a few quality backlinks.
To stress this point even further, we can pull up LongTailPro stats to show that advertisers are paying good money to search for these terms, there is definitely some local (and global) search volume, but more importantly the “Keyword Competition” is a low 25-27 range.
So what does this mean for someone just wanting to try and make a few dollars online in their spare time? Simple… follow my how to start a blog guide and create a site focused around a very tight niche topic like the one above. Write (or outsource) a few great articles for your site around these topics, then do some social and link building promotions to get your site ranking in Google. With a niche this small, it shouldn’t be hard for you to rank a site on the main page of Google for a few long tail keywords, while also making a few bucks in the process. When choosing a niche and topic to write about, make sure you have a way to make money with the site — such as joining an affiliate program or using Google Adsense.
Monetization Goal: Creating a small niche site that ranks organically in Google for long tail keywords and earns $50-$100 a month.
How to Make Money Online in Your Spare Time
At the end of the day, there are hundreds of ways to make money online. Many are complex, but many are also quite simple and easy. I tried to stay away from any opportunities that would require a heavy upfront investment or a lot of pre-training.
No matter what method you choose or try to start making money with, it will ultimately come down to the amount of time, work, and effort you put into it. Millions of people are making good money on the side. Now it’s your time to do the same.
5 Reasons Why Your Business Should Be Writing Blogs Right Now
Blogging is a great way to get your website noticed and generate more traffic and sales. 86% of companies use a blog on their websites, so you can’t afford to miss out.
You may think that blogs aren’t that important, or that they don’t make a lot of difference to your business. But they are a lot more effective than you may think.
Blogging can increase your lead generation by 67%. Whether you’re a new or established business, this can prove invaluable. Here are 5 reasons your business needs to start writing blogs now.
1. Generate Traffic
Blog posts add more content to your website and thus attract more people to visit your site. Creating web content means that you can direct your readers to other parts of your website.
This means you can write a post about one of your products or services and use yours as an example. When readers discover this, you have a greater chance of boosting sales.
2. Boost SEO
When it comes to marketing your business, SEO is king. SEO determines where your website ranks on search engine results. In turn, it impacts how many people find you.
There are a lot of things that affect your SEO. Things like a fully optimized website and using the right links can make a real difference. Hook Agency says that having the right SEO can double or even triple your traffic from search engines.
Once you have your website sorted, blog content is next. The more blogs you write, the better the SEO. Use popular keywords and terms that your audience would search for. This will make your posts rank higher on search engines and get customers your way.
3. Create a Brand Voice
There are a lot of company blogs out there which may be interesting, but they have no distinctive voice. When they have no voice, they all blend into one.
But if you write blogs with a specific voice, you make an impression. When people can recognise your writing style, they recognise your company.
Set featured imageTry to give your posts a personality. They are more fun to read and will keep people coming back to read for more. They make your brand more trustworthy and encourage people to choose your brand.
4. Showcase Your Services
When it comes to your business, you’re the expert. You know all about your own products and services, so use your blog to show off this knowledge!
Explain what you offer and what you can do for your customers. People want brands to know exactly what they’re selling and it makes you more reliable.
It also serves as a free way to advertise your business. You can write as much or as little as you want on the services you’re offering.
5. You Stay Ahead of the Curve
When you give your website a blog, you’re also future proofing your business. Those who don’t have blogs are lagging behind and missing out on a lot of great opportunities.
It gives you the chance to be creative and boost your business in a whole new way. You can also add other media like videos and photos to your posts to boost your SEO even further.
Chances are, you’ll find blogging very fun. Regular content on your site gives your business a firm presence and will keep you on the SEO map for longer.
Your Business Needs to Start Writing Blogs Now
Now that you know how important it is to start writing blogs for your business, it’s time to get started. It’s a fun creative challenge which can lead to more traffic and more sales.
Want to start a blog on your website? Check out our services and see how we can help you set it up.
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Quick and Effective Tips to Maximize Speed of your Website or Blog
Few things are worse than when you click over to a new website or blog, and then it’s loading slow as anything. With everyone having an extremely short attention span, and so many options for other websites and entertainment online, a fast loading website is a must for every blogger, brand, or business on the internet.
There are also many benefits associated with a fast loading site, beyond just user experience. Google is now penalizing sites that take too long to load, and boosting up other sites that a mobile-optimized and running super fast.
Depending on how technical your design or WordPress skills might be, the process of speeding up your site and maximizing it’s optimization might vary. To help with this process, I’ve listed a few of the best working methods below.
Optimize your Homepage to Load Quickly
With the homepage being one of the most vital parts of your website or blog, you should be doing everything possible to make sure it loads quickly. Different things can be done to speed up your homepage such as lowering the number of posts on the main page, minimizing applications and widgets from third-party sites, and also optimizing your images so they are either loading as a smaller sized file or through a CDN service. It’s also a good idea to use an SEO friendly theme or template, as these are more often cleaner with their coding and already optimized right out of the box.
Use an Effective Caching Plugin
If you are using a CMS like WordPress or blogger, then using an effective cashing plugin can contribute nicely in the process of making sure your site is loading as fast as possible. Since caching is an apparatus for a temporary storage of web pages to diminish bandwidth and to improve page loading performance as well, it saves the server’s time to make web pages load faster. Caching plugins are easy to install and use. All you need to do is perform some research online to see which plugin is best for your site, then click a few buttons to have it installed right within WordPress. Once this is done, it’s usually just a matter of copying the account number of your CDN and letting the hosting provider and WordPress plugin do its work.
Use CDN (content delivery network)
We’ve already referenced content delivery networks or CDNs, a few times now. The way these solutions work is that they host a version of your site on their server, and then loads the content from another server that is closest to that individual’s location. More and more site owners and bloggers are using CDNs not only to improve page load speed but to provide users with a great experience to make them stay longer on the website. Also mentioned earlier, this can help with how well a site ranks in Google, while also moving your site above the competition. Moreover, if one of your server locations is overloaded due to huge traffic and visitors, then users can automatically be switched to a new server location to enjoy fast loading website experience.
Improve Your Hosting Plan
If you have a slow loading website or blog, it’s likely due to your hosting plan. If you are pushing a lot of traffic through your site and making money in the process, you should definitely upgrade from a shared server. Shared hosting is often fine for new site owners and bloggers, but as your site gains more attention, backlinks, and traffic, it will also likely be using more server resource. On a shared server, your site is also sharing the server resources with many other sites — sometimes hundreds, or even thousands! Upgrading your hosting plan to a VPS or dedicated hosting package can greatly improve the performance of your site as well. So, if you are still using a cheap web hosting plan with an average price below $5/mo and receiving massive traffic from search engines, then it would be the right time for you to upgrade your hosting plan with a better one to speed up your website loading speed.
Use Optimized Images
Big images take up a lot of space and resources when it comes to loading data from your site. This is especially true with very high-quality images. While these images are going to play a big role in the beauty and engagement on your site, there are still ways to optimize such large images so they load faster and put less stress on your server. There are many plugins are available that can drastically reduce the file size of an image without reducing the quality. Image optimization will not only help you boost website load time but will also save disk space for more files and media. If you really don’t want to overload your website with plugins, then you can also use online image reducer apps and software to optimize image before uploading to the media library of the site.
Minimize HTTP Redirects Requests
How and where content is being loaded on your site can also affect its overall performance. You may need to use redirect requests to redirect the web browser from one URL to another. There are a variety of reasons as to why you might want to do this, such as to specify a new URL location, to track visits and clicks on the site or to connect different elements of the website with each other. Since redirects might be necessary to enhance overall UX of the website, you should only be using the redirect requests that are most important because excessive redirect requests can have an ultimate impact on the loading speed of your website/blog.
Don’t Leave Your Audience Hanging
When browsing the internet, few things are more annoying than accessing a slow loading website. It’s hard enough to get someone to visit your site, let alone stay for a few seconds. Don’t give them a reason to leave right away because your site isn’t loading as fast as it should be.
Follow each of the simple and effective site speed optimization tips above to make sure your site loads as fast as possible, ranks higher than the competition and also doesn’t disappoint your audience when they hit your site.
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