10 ways to leverage technology and make money online

The internet is often touted as a great way to earn money. And every day more people turn online to make money.You can leverage online methods to get a passive income or a side-gig. Or, you can put your skills to work and start a new business.

There are plenty of opportunities to explore online.

Those looking to leverage this route can find several free courses to enlighten them and lead the way. The thing you need to avoid is get-rich-quick schemes. Money doesn’t come free. You’ll need hard work and determination to succeed.

The greatest advantage of the internet is that it brings the world to you. It is possible to leverage technology and get opportunities that may not have been available otherwise.

Here are ways to leverage technology and make money online.

1. Become a Social Media Influencer with Instagram

Do you find yourself spending a lot of time on social media websites like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter?

You can use these social networks to earn money.

Instagram is the most popular choice for influencers, but others can be used similarly as well. Globally, influencers have used Instagram to launch their business and leverage it to greater heights.

The most famous example here is Kylie Jenner, who heavily leveraged her Instagram presence for her multi-million dollar business.

To leverage your Instagram presence, you need to have a lot of followers and be engaged with your audience. It is best to focus on a niche where you can succeed. Your account can be about fashion, jewellery, music, technology or anything else.

Whatever you choose, stick with it, and be sure to send regular updates to your followers. Interesting and entertaining content is the key here and that will keep bringing you more followers.

Once you have 10k-20k followers, you can start approaching businesses for sponsorship or ads. Things become remarkably easier as you go above 50k followers, and you might see businesses approaching you to offer sponsorships.

2. Freelance

Do you have a skill that others will pay for?

Freelancing is the choice to make.

Unlike other methods where you need to build a presence or invest money, returns from freelancing can be near-instantaneous.

In an online freelancing environment, you get access to clients from all over the world. With the right professional and social skills, you can build a formidable online presence with prospective opportunities to expand further.

When you start, it is useful to focus on building your profile. As you get positive reviews from clients, you will have an established presence, and getting more jobs becomes easier.

Millions of people around the world use freelancing as a full-time job. It pays handsomely and there are massive opportunities.

If you choose to freelance, be sure to pick a niche where you have strong knowledge. This could be writing, coding, graphic design, consulting, or anything else. It is possible to work with multiple niches, but it helps to be focused and solution-oriented.

There are several websites and marketplaces where you can register to start your freelancing business. Some of the popular ones are iwriter, Upwork, Freelancer and Fiverr.

3. Start a Blog

Do you want the creative freedom to decide what you write or what you create?

Starting a blog can employ your creative side to start a business.

A blog can bring you money and recognition. It is possible to earn through advertisements, sponsorships, affiliate marketing, and much more. Successful bloggers earn a few lakhs every month from their blogs. Even moderately successful blogs can bring a steady and useful income.

The content of the blog is your choice to make. The best strategy is to choose a niche where you can make positive, knowledgeable, and where possible, entertaining contributions. Your niche can be technology, art, gadgets, music, recipes, beauty… really; anything under the sun is okay.

The point is to drive visitors to your blog. High visitor traffic can be leveraged to earn money. As you start your blog, spend some time learning about Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Dealing with search engines is important for the success of a website.

Starting costs are low. You will have to buy a domain name and a hosting plan. Many companies offer a free domain with their hosting plan. Popular hosting companies include GoDaddy and HostGator.

Make a list of domain names you would like for your blog. It is useful if they’re related to your chosen niche, but that’s not necessary. You will need just one name, but some may be already taken. So it helps to have a list.

4. Sell Homemade Items

Do you craft things as a hobby?

Use technology to earn money from your hobby.

There is a positive demand for crafts and people earn good money from selling their creations. A long list of items can be sold this way, including crafts, jewellery, knitwear, soaps, candles, etc.

You can sell these items through Facebook and Instagram. Enterprising users have even managed to use tools like WhatsApp to sell their creations.

When you decide to sell things online, it is useful to learn digital marketing. There are several easily accessible tools and free courses to get you started.

5. Start your eCommerce Business with Shopify

Do you have a product that can make a splash in the market?

It’s time to take a trip on the e-Commerce highways of the internet to fulfil your entrepreneurial dreams.

You can use this model to sell your products or retail items you source from a manufacturer. Set up your e-Commerce store and business so you can sell things online and enjoy commercial success.

Setting up a store with Shopify is easy. They take care of the management and technical side of things, so you can focus solely on growing your business. You can check out Best Under India to have a look at the various products and brands that you can merchandise.

Shopify also offers a range of designs and themes to make your store stand out from the crowd. Of course, you can do the web design yourself or hire a designer if you choose to.

There is an initial investment to start. The lowest cost plan comes at around INR 2,500 at Shopify. You’ll also have to spend on inventory and management. Overall, it is a reasonable investment to take the first steps for your e-Commerce empire.

I specifically mention Shopify here because it is well-established and easy to use. Several other tools are available, including WooCommerce and Magento.

6. Use Amazon FBA for Your Ambitions

How about leveraging the world’s biggest online marketplace for your e-Commerce idea?

FBA (Fulfilmentby Amazon) enables you to leverage Amazon’s massive market base and technology for your own business.

With Amazon FBA, the online retail giant takes care of the logistics of your business. You can focus on managing and expanding the business.

There are associated costs here and Amazon will take a commission on the products you sell. So keep that in mind when you set pricing for the items. It’s also helpful if you know SEO skills that can help your product feature higher on Amazon’s product search.

7. Use Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing builds on your knowledge and passion for an item and turns it into an income source.

The basics here are the same as starting a blog. However, the focus moves to a niche of products and/or services. Choose a niche about which you have good knowledge. Some examples are musical instruments, gadgets, headphones, and home improvement ideas.

Your niche can be wide or specific, as you choose. As in our example, you can write about home improvement products. Staying focused on the kitchen is as advantageous.

Your content focuses on specific products on the niche and provides readers with valuable information on the products.

The affiliate website drives traffic to an online retailer through these articles. In turn, the online retailer pays a small commission for every sale made.

Affiliate websites are useful in creating a steady passive income stream. More successful websites can earn lakhs of rupees every day.

You will need to sign up for an affiliate program and use special affiliate links on your website. The most popular program is Amazon Affiliates, which makes it possible to earn commissions on sales made through Amazon.

8. Start a YouTube Channel

Use the video format to let loose your creativity.

Everything you can do through a blog or website, you can do through video. In this age of Internet Celebrities, YouTube is a force to reckon with. A lot of the big names we know today have come through YouTube and continue to be influential.

Choose a niche for your videos and make appropriate, but entertaining content that will keep your viewers spellbound. The list of topics and niches to choose is endless. You can make short videos, talk about movies and music, electronics, social issues, and a lot more.

Your goal is to drive views to your videos. As your videos get popular and your channel gets more subscriptions, avenues for monetization open up. YouTube channels can monetize through sponsorships, display advertising, product placement, affiliate marketing, and a lot more.

Registering your channel is free and you can pretty much start with videos shot on your mobile phone. Those who are more serious in their efforts can choose to use more sophisticated cameras, video editing software and mics to make their videos stand out.

9. Let Loose Your Inner Entrepreneur with Dropshipping

Dropshipping is an interesting concept that many have employed to earn lakhs of rupees every month. You are the seller of manufactured goods in this scenario. Though in many cases, you don’t even need to maintain an inventory.

You source goods from a manufacturer who ships them to the customer as the order is received. This technique can be immensely profitable since you don’t have to actively manage an inventory.

Marketing skills are the most important for this scenario. It is also important to periodically check the products to ensure your customers are getting the best quality.

You will need a website as an e-Commerce store with this approach. This can be a regular e-Commerce store as detailed previously.

10. Online Tutoring and Selling Courses

Good teachers and subject matter experts are always in demand.

Online tutoring is a steadily growing opportunity and many teachers have found this to be a very profitable approach.

Depending on your approach and subject, you can choose to tutor students one-on-one or create courses that are available for purchase. Demonstrable skills and established expertise are immensely useful in this approach.

Successful courses can be purchased several times and become an excellent income stream. Make good use of technology and use videos, images, and rich media in your courses so they can be easily understood by students.

This isn’t applicable only for school students. Even professionals and adults often need courses and educational material for their business and personal needs.

When selling courses, you can use services like teachable and udemy. They will take a commission on the sales, but they’ll handle most of the technical aspects so there’s one less thing for you to worry about.