Many opportunities exist digitally to create a career for yourself. Digital nomads are popping up left and right. Actually, it is predicted that by 2035, there will be 1 billion digital nomads, according to this presentation by entrepreneur Pieter Levels.
There are a variety of ways to use the internet to make a living. Here are a few examples of individuals who have done quite well for themselves with a simple Wi-Fi connection and a dream:
Josh and Jill Stanton
Josh and Jill Stanton are a powerhouse couple who are all about the non-conventional lifestyle and approach to business. They began building a business together in January of 2012 with a skincare affiliate website. Four months into their business, they made their first $1,000. However, it was not until a year and a half after beginning that first site that they started reeling in $10,000 a month in June of 2013. Two years after running affiliate sites, making money on “autopilot,” and running a course teaching others how to do this too, they began developing what would be their bread and butter today: Screw the Nine to Five.
Although initially their money-making internet tactics were primarily through affiliate websites, they now pay themselves with the creation of various online courses and a membership site. Individuals pay a monthly fee to have special access to products, tools and information they need to take the same route of office freedom.
Their business began with the thought that you do not have to be confined to a job you hate and have been able to turn this into a multi-six figure business while traveling the world.
Melanie Duncan is an internet-guru who began her career in retail. In 2006, during her sophomore year in college, she started a Greek apparel company despite not being a part of Greek life herself. Although it was a rocky start with $40,000 in debt, she and her now husband turned the business to online marketing, which resulted in orders for their product throughout the nation. Within three years, they became one of the largest Greek apparel companies in the U.S.
Melanie continued to flourish in business, which did not come without ups and downs, of course, but found a turning point in her products when she discovered Pinterest. This social media site took her e-commerce to a while new level, and in 2011, she used her knowledge to teach others how to build their business online, using the tools and tactics that have worked for her. She has multiple products available under her name, all primarily online courses focusing on one particular aspect of growing an online business. So, not only is she selling products online; she is selling her experience.
Four years and more than 160,000 subscribers later, Melanie, who has turned her name into its own brand, has developed multiple online businesses that produce over $2 million in annual revenue.
Dale Partridge’s story met many failures before hitting the million dollar mark. The businesses Dale launched were both online and offline, from a rock climbing gym to a successful e-commerce store. He was fired from 15 jobs before trying to start his first business. He now primarily focuses on teaching others how to start their business rather than starting his own through his company Start-up Camp.
He puts himself in front of the camera to connect with his audience as well as blogs regularly. In addition to his online course, he makes five to six figures regularly from his blog of more than 350,000 readers alone.
His companies have generated over $25 million in revenue and donated $4 million to charities.
Key takeaways on how to use the internet to make a living:
These individuals did not just start web browsing to get to where they are today. Here are some key takeaways and tips on what you need to do if you want to use the internet to make a living:
- You might have many failures before you start making money. None of these individuals started making money right away. They each had to figure out their own magic, if you will, that led them to where they are today.
- Educate yourself. Starting from scratch is really difficult, and may take longer without the right tools. Many people, like the entrepreneurs listed above, are willing to share their failures and “what not to do’s” to help you figure out your path faster. If a monthly subscription does not seem do-able, you can simply follow their blogs to start and sign up for free webinars until the moment is right for you.
- Invest in a domain name and website. Without a domain name and website, you will have a difficult time truly leveraging this journey forward. A blog is a very powerful tool to use to get your information and name out there. Start now to get yourself one step closer to that revenue stream.
- Figure out your niche. Are you a writer? Do you have some kind of knowledge you can share with the world? What makes you special? Figure out your niche as a starting base.
- Determine your money-making resources. Affiliate marketing, advertising on your site (direct advertising and pay-per-click ads), and selling your own items are all ways to make money online. What route will you take?
- You can create more than one stream. The Stantons, Melanie and Dale and many others like them all developed multiple revenue streams through online businesses; however, this is not always the best route to take for everyone. Dale found that he wanted to simplify his life with his family and began sharpening his focus on one particular project rather than many. Sometimes, it can harm you to wear too many hats; other times, it is quite beneficial. It all depends on you and your current situation. If you are just starting off, you should just focus on one thing at a time and expand from there.
- Use social media to promote yourself. Social media is a powerful tool, and if you plan on running an online business these platforms will be one way you can advertise yourself at little cost. Just remember: social media is all about building relationships so make sure you are interacting with your followers, not talking at them.
- Grow your audience and your list. When you focus your source of revenue online, you will need followers in order to really use the internet to make a living. Do something every day that will grow your list. (Hint: Blogging is a great place to start.)
It is amazing how you can use the internet to make a living. Whether it is freelance writing or teaching courses online, with hard work and dedication, you can be well on your way to a six-figure salary.
Do you use the internet to make a living? Share your experience with us in the comments below.