There are millions of programs, and plans, and all sorts of sets about making money. It’s unfortunate. There are simple ways to make money that don’t involve giving away very much, if anything.
Your most valuable resource is your time, and most of us have plenty of it. So, here are my 10 recommendations for making money:
1. Write a Book
It’s been said that everyone has a book inside them. You just need to find out what it is. You could write a novel, or write a non-fiction book. Whatever you do, you simply have to sit down and do it.
Anyone can write a book! It’s crazy to think otherwise. Thousands of books are published any year. The simple reason there aren’t hundreds of thousands of new novelists each year is because none of them bother to sit down and write a novel.
The average novel is between 60,000-80,000 words. The average novel is 200 pages, which is about 70,000 words. You can do it! You just need to come up with an idea, and stick to it. Write each day, every day. And you’ll reach your goal; all it takes is time.
2. Make a Computer Program
Every kid, and many adults, dream of creating games. I think it’s the allure of having complete control over whatever you make. Of course, there’s also the allure of being able to solve a problem with something you’ve created. Whatever your motivation, computer programming is a lucrative business, and it can be learned at home.
Computer programs are written in a “language”, and most languages are available in one form or another for free. Microsoft is a big contender in this area: their “Visual” line of products allow you to design your program by dragging and clicking components onto a window representing your program.
The code for Microsoft’s Visual Basic is easy to learn, and while it is difficult to create games with it, it makes creating “business” programs a snap. Pick up a book at your local bookstore, or simply read-up online. You can learn the basics of the language in a couple of hours, or days.
Every program you create increases your effectiveness, and the amount of money you can make selling your programs online.
3. Start a Business
This one has the highest potential for return, but unfortunately also has the highest cost associated with it, and the highest cost of failure. What do you need to form a business? You need an idea. A good idea, hopefully. And you need the knowledge to make it succeed.
People say to me all the time, “You know what should create? An .” And they’re good ideas. Lots of people have ideas. You need to capitalize on them, and turn them into profit.
You may not even have a physical product. Web-based companies are and have been popular since the dot-com bubble, and not all of them died when the bubble burst. (Think Amazon and eBay.)
4. Start a Website
This one isn’t as specific as #3, though they do share a lot in common. There are thousands of websites out there advocating SEO (Search Engine Optimization), and what it can do for you in combination with a program such as Google Adsense.
Google Adsense will pay you for clicks to targeted ads you place on your page. For instance, if you run a website about cycling, you’ll put the “ad code” into your website, and it will read your page with a “Googlebot” and notice you talk about cycling.
Then, it will put ads inside the “ad code” box that would relevant to people interested in cycling. (“Buy bicycles here cheap”) and every time someone clicks on those ads, you get money. It’s a wonderful system and can make both you and Google rich.
The key here is to come up with some unique content. A niche topic. One that hasn’t been written very much on. And write about it! The more pages your website has, and the more they link to each other, the higher the chance you’ll get ranked highly in the search engines.
5. Become a Transcriptionist
Digital transcription is the task of taking a page of scanned-in text or audio and turning it into user manipulatable text. Basically, you’re typing up pages, or listening to some sort of spoken-word and typing up the text.
This is a worthwhile endeavour, as experienced and fast transcriptionists can make a lot of money. What do you need to do this job? A program to view graphics (like the one that comes with Windows), a program to view audio (ditto for Windows), a keyboard (I hope your computer has one!) time, and some clients.
Where do you get these clients? Well, try freelancing sites. There are a lot of freelance transcription jobs out there, you just need to find them. In another article I’ll go more in depth on this topic and about how to make an expert digital transcription fast, as well as what you should charge.
What’s better than proofreading or copywriting? This job basically involves reading things others have already written, and checking them for errors; this is the job an editor at a newspaper or magazine performs.
This can be a tough job to break into without any formal qualifications. Your best bet is to look to a freelancing website designed for writers (try www.freelancewriting.com), though it is possible.
7. Create/Sell Art
If you happen to have some art skills, there are people looking for them! Selling art can be an easy way to make money, especially if you love doing it. This also works for Photography and other types of art.
Word of mouth is huge in this business, and once you have an established clientelle, the money can flow in from satisfied customers. Most people don’t know what to look for when they want something done, so they can come to you!
8. Become a Consultant
You might be asking yourself, “What does a Consultant do?” They do consulting, of course! Everyone out there has some knoweledge. And if you don’t, you can learn. The Internet has all sorts of resources for learning.
Once you’ve learned a valuable skill, you simply sell your consulting services to people. All sorts of people do this, and often it’s because they have no formal experience in the business, or because they’re Ex-Industry and want to make more money.
You see this with people who have some knowledge others don’t have easy (or as easy) access as most people. Police Officers (or people who’ve been to Police Academy, in those States that offer it to civillians), members of the Military, and more.
9. Become a Translator/Interpreter
This one is pretty simply.
Simply learn another language (Google “learn [language]” and you’ll find lots of learning materials.) Once you’ve become conversational in your language of choice (for translation) or fluent in your language (for interpretation) you can contact local police departments and other people who would need translation, and you’ll soon find yourself with all sorts of work!
10. Become an Investor
The last one is kind of a cheat. You do need some money to become an investor. But you can turn a small amount of money into a big amount of money over time. The secret is CDs, also known as GICs. A 6-month GIC with 2% interest can accrue money over time.
It takes a lot of time for your GIC to make anything (a $1000 GIC might net you $100 after 3 years) but you can build it up and eventually make quite a lot of money.
So there you have it, 10 ways to make money with little or no investment money.