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The Internet has brought with it countless priceless opportunities such as videos of laughing babies, memes of grumpy cats, and sales of uranium ore on Amazon (replete with the required “Back to the Future” jokes). But arguably the Internet’s biggest contribution to the world is in the area of entrepreneurship How To Spark Personal Growth: 5 Tricks Of The Entrepreneur How To Spark Personal Growth: 5 Tricks Of The Entrepreneur Not everyone has to be an entrepreneur, but everyone can learn something from the entrepreneur. By tapping into some of those entrepreneurial traits, you can radically alter your own life in an upward direction. Read More .

In the past, if you wanted the Donald Trump lifestyle, you had to put on your best suit, grovel to the bank manager, and take out a loan that could either make you or break you. Now you can start up online at minimal cost and minimal risk, with just your laptop, a dream, and plenty of caffeine.

Clothing is optional. So is the toupee.

Blogging & Writing

Picture my day. I rather lazily get up at around 10:00am, and after breakfast and walking the dog, I sit down in front of the laptop to channel my inner George Orwell.

Yes, when it comes to being a writer, I am living the dream. Bang out a MakeUseOf post or two, a love ballad, a Pulitzer-winning novel, then it’s on with the smoking jacket, and cocktail hour. Wake up the next morning with a raging hangover and start again.

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Thanks to the popularity and ease of use of blogging platforms, such as Blogger Looking For Free Blog Hosting? Try Blogger With A Custom Domain Looking For Free Blog Hosting? Try Blogger With A Custom Domain If you don't want to pay for hosting, one of the best routes to go for is Blogger with a custom domain. This beats other free hosting providers by a mile. Here's why. Read More , WordPress Set Up Your Blog With Wordpress: The Ultimate Guide Set Up Your Blog With Wordpress: The Ultimate Guide Want to start your own blog, but don't know where to start? You should really look into Wordpress, the simplest and most powerful blogging platform available today. Read More , and Tumblr The Unofficial, Beginner's Guide to Tumblr The Unofficial, Beginner's Guide to Tumblr Tumblr's the number one social networking site for people under 25. Clearly it's important, but it's a bit mystifying. It's less a blog than it is an anti-blog. Read More , it is easy for someone to begin a blog (the hard part is keeping it going). To make any money from it, you should have a specialized subject that you are passionate about, and which you can write about for an extended period of time.

If blogging doesn’t appeal, then you could write proper books (fiction and non-fiction), then either try to get a traditional print publisher or go the digital self-publishing Your Guide To Self-Publishing: From Print To Kindle And Beyond! Your Guide To Self-Publishing: From Print To Kindle And Beyond! They say everyone has a book in them. The moment of completion brings a mix of immense satisfaction… and a confused, horrified reality: “How on earth am I going to publish it?” Read More route (Kindle How To Make Your Own eBooks And Publish Them On Amazon How To Make Your Own eBooks And Publish Them On Amazon I'm sure that more than a few of you readers have a half-written book or useful guide you've put together to help people learn something. You've probably wondered if it would be possible to make... Read More & iBooks). Kindle has its Scout program Publish Your Book With Amazon’s Crowdsourced Kindle Scout Program Publish Your Book With Amazon’s Crowdsourced Kindle Scout Program Want to get your book finally published? Amazon, the maker of the Kindle, has launched a new program that marries the self-publishing industry with crowdsourced campaigns like those on Kickstarter. Read More  and Mac computers have iBooks Author How To Write and Publish Your First iBook Using iBooks Author How To Write and Publish Your First iBook Using iBooks Author Thinking about producing your own e-book? Apple's iBooks Author is a free, user-friendly tool for producing interactive publications that can reach a large audience of iPad, iPhone & Mac users. Read More  where you can make interactive ePUBs.

Or turn your ePUBs into Kindle-compatible MOBI files EPUB to MOBI: Easily Convert Your EPUB Books to MOBI EPUB to MOBI: Easily Convert Your EPUB Books to MOBI Read More with Calibre A User's Guide To Calibre eBook Manager A User's Guide To Calibre eBook Manager Easily manage, convert and transfer your books using Calibre, the swiss army knife of eBook software, and a variety of related programs. Read More . PDF versions are also essential and there are many PDF converters Convert Any File To PDF Format Using Nitro Reader [Windows] Convert Any File To PDF Format Using Nitro Reader [Windows] Read More out there.

Finally, hang out your online shingle and take assignments for companies looking for a copywriter. I do this, as well as my MakeUseOf work, and some assignments can be very interesting and/or lucrative. Check out ProBlogger as well as our own Angela’s Write Revolution.

Photography & Art

Thanks to Google Images, and the mistaken widespread belief Concerned About Copyright? A Guide For Legally Using Images On The Web Concerned About Copyright? A Guide For Legally Using Images On The Web Copyright is a complex subject. A fair amount of understanding makes it easier. If you're wondering under what circumstances you can use someone else's creative work -- expect some answers here. Read More that all images on the Internet are free to use, selling photos online has become a bit of a tough proposition. Plus, the proliferation of smartphone cameras and Instagram filters How To Make Custom Filters For Instagram On iPhone Or Android How To Make Custom Filters For Instagram On iPhone Or Android Instagram only has a certain set of filters, but what if you could make your own custom filters? Here's how. Read More means that even a blind person thinks they are the next Jimmy Olsen.

If that doesn’t put you off, then there are various routes to selling your material. One is to make your own website to showcase your portfolio The Best Website Builders to Create a Clean Online Portfolio The Best Website Builders to Create a Clean Online Portfolio Having an online portfolio is critical for today's digital worker. Which free website builder is best for your portfolio? We help you pick out the suitable one from the ten contenders. Read More  and promote the hell out of it on social media and search engines. The second (and arguably easier) route is to show the images with a very prominent watermark 13 Easy & Free Ways to Watermark Photos 13 Easy & Free Ways to Watermark Photos Have you ever needed or wanted to mark an image as yours to prevent others from duplicating it and/or claiming it as their own? You might already know that this is called watermarking. The process... Read More (to prevent theft) on places like Flickr 10 Flickr Groups For Serious Shutterbugs 10 Flickr Groups For Serious Shutterbugs Read More and 500px Create A Stunning Professional Photography Portfolio With 500px Create A Stunning Professional Photography Portfolio With 500px 500px is aimed at photographers who want a professional portfolio that'll stand out in a crowd, without the headache of trying to organise a dedicated site. It's certainly got the “professional” edge over Flickr, and... Read More . Stock photography sites such as Shutterstock Shutterstock Labs: How to Find Perfect Stock Images and Videos Shutterstock Labs: How to Find Perfect Stock Images and Videos Shutterstock recently added several tools to help you find and edit the exact stock images and videos that you need. Here's our walkthrough of what to expect. Read More are also good possibilities.

If you would rather channel your Da Vinci 5 Web Galleries To View The World's Best Historical Art 5 Web Galleries To View The World's Best Historical Art Read More onto the canvas, then online art sites where you may be able to sell a canvas or two include Yessy, Artbreak, and Artsy. Or go the other way and make high quality poster-prints of your work using an online printing service 5 Affordable Websites for Printing Digital Photos Online 5 Affordable Websites for Printing Digital Photos Online Some pictures are so valuable that you want to carry them around in your wallet or hang them over your fireplace. Where are you going to go now that one-hour photo shops are endangered? Read More . Since the cost of a poster version would cost less than a canvas, you may be able to sell a lot more of them.

Digital Publishing & eCommerce

We already discussed making ebooks for Kindle and iBooks, but what if you don’t want to solely depend on Amazon and Apple to sell your product for you? It chafes to see a percentage of your sales go to a third party, so if you want to cut out the middle man, then it may be a good idea to consider self-hosting (although it would be a whole lot more difficult, since you wouldn’t have the in-built customer base that Amazon and Apple have).

Your own site and your own domain are essential (to show you are professional) and the best platform for this has got to be WordPress. Install the free Easy Digital Downloads plugin (check out the demo), which gives you a shopping cart, payment options through various payment gateways such as Paypal and Stripe, promotional codes, a built-in customer area, and analytics. Not to mention a huge list of extension options to make your store better.

Along with ebooks, you can sell anything which can be downloaded including audio files (such as the audio book versions of your eBooks), images, videos, website templates, code, and anything else you can think of.

Selling on Etsy & Fiverr

This option appeals to a lot of people due to the large audiences on these sites actively looking for sellers, but others despise it because it’s too labor-intensive, time-intensive, and low cost-per-order.

It’s definitely not something that Tim Ferriss would advocate in his 4 Hour Workweek theory, but hey, everyone is different and there are many happy and successful Etsy and Fiverr traders out there.

Etsy Etsy - An Alternative To eBay For Handmade Products Etsy - An Alternative To eBay For Handmade Products Read More is an online marketplace for items crafted by the seller. For example, when I bought my laptop, I bought a soft protective case made by an Etsy seller. Etsy is also a place where you can sell photography and art.

Fiverr Fiverr - A $5 Marketplace For Anyone Looking For A Service Fiverr - A $5 Marketplace For Anyone Looking For A Service Imagine you’ve got a photo of yourself or a friend which you really like, but you know it could be made perfect with just a little Photoshop magic. What you really need is a friend... Read More is a site where services are rendered for prices starting at $5. Services are varied, including graphic design, video production, voiceovers, writing and editing, and much more. There seems to be no limit 7 Of The Strangest Services Offered On Fiverr 7 Of The Strangest Services Offered On Fiverr I recently found out all about Fiverr – a website that offers odd jobs to people for only five bucks a pop (with the occasional paid extras) – and as you may be able to... Read More to what anyone will do for 5 bucks.

Vlogging & Podcasting

Podcasting 4 Tips for Producing a Professional-Sounding Podcast 4 Tips for Producing a Professional-Sounding Podcast They say content reigns king when producing a podcast, but it's not the only thing that matters. Read More seems to be enjoying a renaissance of late with many high quality ones being produced. It wasn’t that long ago that we had one, headed up by Justin, Dave, and James A Beginners Guide To Technophilia [Weird & Wonderful Web] A Beginners Guide To Technophilia [Weird & Wonderful Web] Come into the insane world of Earth's favorite podcast. If you're not aware of Technophilia then you're missing out. This beginners guide to Technophilia, is your open doorway into that world. Read More . Many other websites also have their own podcast, as it is one of the easiest ways to connect with their audience.

All you need is a microphone, Skype if you want to do interviews, Audacity 7 Audacity Tips For Better Audio Editing On a Budget 7 Audacity Tips For Better Audio Editing On a Budget Want to move beyond simple cut-and-crop jobs? Knowing just a few Audacity tips can make your audio-editing life a whole lot easier. Read More to edit the podcast’s audio recording, and a website to host the show A Guide To Setting Up Your Own Podcast Website & Feed Using Wordpress & Podpress A Guide To Setting Up Your Own Podcast Website & Feed Using Wordpress & Podpress I recently had the opportunity to become part of a podcast which I’m sure you’ll hear about soon enough - and it's all fairly new ground for me. As the only one with enough bandwidth... Read More .

muo-podcasting-hostingfree-techno

The video version of podcasting is “vlogging”, and it is vloggers who are more likely to come into serious money quicker than regular podcasters.

Since so much these days in the media revolves around looks and image, presenting yourself on video is the fastest way to show companies and potential advertisers who you are and what you have to offer. Vloggers are especially prolific on YouTube, with one of the fastest growing areas being female cosmetics.

Teaching or Tutoring Online

Years back, when I was relying on English teaching 5 Online Resources For English Language (ESL) Teachers 5 Online Resources For English Language (ESL) Teachers Read More to pay the bills, finding regular students in my town just wasn’t proving consistent enough for financial security, so I got a bit creative and started offering lessons online via Skype. Payment was via Paypal and the webcam was used to provide a level of “one-on-one” that a microphone headset couldn’t 100% provide.

Along with the Skype lessons, I also made my own lesson materials, including worksheets, mini-workbooks, flashcards, video lessons, audio files for the students to listen to later, and so forth. I also sold these items separately on both eBay and my own website. If you know how to draw, you can also illustrate your material to make it more marketable and sellable.

Web Design & Coding

As the saying goes, you’re not anybody online if you don’t have a website. If that holds true, then web designers 7 Practices Pro Designers Are Using To Improve Their Business 7 Practices Pro Designers Are Using To Improve Their Business Running a business is very taxing, but it doesn't need to be that way. Read More and coders The Journey Of A Coder: How To Enhance Your Coding Skills By Contributing To An Open Source Project The Journey Of A Coder: How To Enhance Your Coding Skills By Contributing To An Open Source Project If you’re looking to market yourself as a competent programmer, there’s no better time to show off your skills in the best way possible — by contributing to open source projects. There are many reasons... Read More will always be in demand.

Web design can mean designing an entire website’s frontend and backend, but increasingly it just means designing a blog theme Design Your Own Wordpress Theme Easily With Constructor Design Your Own Wordpress Theme Easily With Constructor Read More  for a platform like WordPress or Tumblr. You can offer to make custom-made templates, or you can give away a free version with your weblink in the footer and offer to remove the weblink in return for a one-off payment. You can also make WordPress plugins The Best WordPress Plugins The Best WordPress Plugins Read More .

Another area is smartphone apps. If you can make an app Create Your Own Smartphone App With Infinite Monkeys - No Coding Knowledge Required Create Your Own Smartphone App With Infinite Monkeys - No Coding Knowledge Required It would be great if we all had the time, skills, and patience to learn computer coding, especially since technology pervades so many areas of our life. But thankfully, there are applications and web developers... Read More for an Android phone or for the iOS platform, then you can command a tidy sum for your services. Or if you’re really ambitious, you might even try your hand at game development 5 Free Game Development Software Tools To Make Your Own Games 5 Free Game Development Software Tools To Make Your Own Games Have you ever wanted to create that game that's been bubbling in your mind for years? What if I told you that the possibility wasn't all that farfetched? The past decade has seen some massive... Read More .

Resume Design

your-resume-improve

Finally we end with a bit of an old-fashioned business idea, because resumes Your All-In-One Guide To Building The Perfect Resume Your All-In-One Guide To Building The Perfect Resume Whether you just graduated, are returning to school or are looking for a new job, within or outside your career, you need a resume. But not just a resume. You need a great resume. One... Read More (or a curriculum vitae, as we say in the UK) have been needed by job applicants since the beginning of time. How else can you give a creative retelling of your job history, by describing that year off as a “one year mission to boldly go where no student has gone before — except the library”?

When I had an editor mentor at a newspaper, while studying journalism, he would tell me all about the absolutely God-awful resumes that would pass across his desk. It was almost as if the person would start off wanting the job, then halfway through the application give up the will to live.

If there is a job you would really like to have, getting the resume right is not optional — it’s essential Upgrade Your Job Hunt: 3 Quick Ways To Improve Your Resume Upgrade Your Job Hunt: 3 Quick Ways To Improve Your Resume Your resume is key to landing that job interview. Technology can help check how readable your CV is, thus increasing your chances of making a good impression. Read More . It’s your one and only chance to make a good impression. Mess that up and you won’t even be called for an interview.

So if you are in any way skilled at cranking out well-designed resumes How to Make a Visual Resume with PowerPoint in 3 Steps How to Make a Visual Resume with PowerPoint in 3 Steps Read More , then it may be a nice little side business that you can develop.

These potential business ideas only scratch the surface of what’s possible, but they’ve been proven to be plausible routes to take. If you have your own ideas to add, don’t keep them to yourself! Share your wealth of knowledge with us in the comments below!

Image Credits: Home office via Shutterstock, Man’s Hands Typing by Antonov Roman via Shutterstock, Young Man Using a Camera by KieferPix via Shutterstock, Studio Microphone for Recording Podcasts by Arina P Habich via Shutterstock, Classroom Teacher by Charlie Edward via Shutterstock, Computer HTML on Monitor by spaxiax via Shutterstock, Resume & Pen by NAN728 via Shutterstock

  1. Arul Mani
    July 13, 2015 at 9:40 am

    Very intresting article ! Just got some ideas coming into my mind after reading this !!!

    • Mark O'Neill
      July 13, 2015 at 10:24 am

      Care to share any of them with us? :-)

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