5 Steps To Passive Income Online
[toc]The dream for nearly every blogger is to eventually make enough money to quit their job. Ideally, this would be a passive income online. That is, the money would come in whether they were working that day or not.
While it may seem like a pipe dream to many, it is possible to make a passive income online, but it takes work to get the ball rolling.
Here are the five crucial steps you need to follow to make a passive income online, as passive as possible
1. Build Organic Traffic
No matter what your business model happens to be, you can’t make a cent unless you are getting traffic. Videos, Facebook Pages, blogs or even ebooks all need visitors to ever have a chance of converting a sale.
The most common approach is to focus on traffic coming from search engines. SEO is a tough process, but if you get your target pages ranked well, the traffic is warm and more likely to convert without a recommendation from a third party.
There are some steps to ensure that your SEO efforts don’t go to waste:
- Choose keywords with adequate search volume- and weak competition- and optimize your page to target them.
- If you are ranking pages on a website, ensure the site loads quickly to reduce the likelihood new visitors will abandon the page before it loads.
- Should you choose to outsource your SEO campaigns, and you should, choose quality workers who won’t rely on link spam to rank your pages.
- Finally, target buying keywords such as “buy product” or “how do I (fill in the blank with an answer to a question or solution to a problem)?
If these are in place, then you need to make sure that the content on the page, and the offer it promotes, is relevant to the search term. Be as specific as possible when creating important pages upfront to avoid lost sales and increase the likelihood new visitors will share what they find on social media or link to it from their own blogs and websites.
After SEO comes social media. Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest are the most popular social sites with each having their merits.
Twitter has become more of a broadcast medium in the last year or two, but can still be good for building relationships and gaining influence. It tends to under perform in many markets but can still be a good way to build traffic if you manage to cut through the noise.
Pinterest is valuable for markets with a strong visual component since the entire site is based on image sharing. It is worth creating an account and pinning images from your site to relevantly named boards so it can be found by others.
On both of these, focus on following accounts similar to yours, share their content and be active and engaging when it makes sense. Pinterest tends to be a strong source of traffic when it comes to converting sales, so if your market is right for it, Pinterest can be very valuable.
Lastly, Facebook is seen by many as the Holy Grail of social traffic, and rightfully so. It is a site with strong sharing and conversational elements that make building a community easy and fun.
You should be on Facebook, regardless of your market or the business model you put in place. Much of the traffic comes from people who have liked your page or from their friends who saw that they liked it, found it interesting, and chose to click through to see the content. This is very powerful. Facebook is the online equivalent to word of mouth advertising.
Starting a page on Facebook is easy. Most start growing their page through Facebook ads. Target specific interests, the right demographic, use an engaging picture, compelling headline, and straight-to-the point body copy with a strong call to action for best results.
You may notice that Facebook advertising takes some tweaking to get right, so set your initial budget fairly low until you get the hang of it.
Once the page is set up, is getting likes through ads or through Facebook’s search function, begin posting relevant and interesting content with a call to action such as “Like this and share it with your friends”.
In time, you will notice that traffic to your site, videos or whatever else it is you are using will begin to increase and will hopefully attract links from other sites as well. As far as social media goes, most marketers would do well to invest the majority of their time on getting traffic from Facebook.
An engaged audience is vital to building a passive income online.
2. Outsource Some Content Creation
If you have a blog, you should be the main author of the content you post. It is important to have a consistent voice. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t save some time and move one step closer to making a passive income online by outsourcing, you can feature several authors on your blog or you can have someone write notes upon which you can create your posts and add your voice to it.
Types of content that can be outsourced include:
- Feature length written content you may lack the expertise to create yourself
Getting images, videos and infographics outsourced all make sense. They are time consuming and require a certain degree of technical skill most lack.
Having written content outsourced is more complex. To make it simple, do one of the two following things.
First, you can solicit a guest post from a fellow blogger who clearly has expertise on the topic. They may ask for payment, in which case you may want to find someone else. These other bloggers may also agree to create content for you as a guest blog with the requirement that you link back to them. This is a great idea and also creates valuable opportunities to network and build relationships.
Second, you can have the content written by a freelance writer and then rewrite parts of it to give your own voice to the writing. For bloggers who don’t want to run guest posts, this is fine and is more time effective than doing all the research and writing yourself.
If your content is good enough, it will build authority and the sustainable traffic volume needed to make a passive income online.
3. Use An Autoresponder To Automate The Sales Process
Email marketing and list building is still the most profitable way to make a passive income online. When you get someone’s email address, they have shown they trust you enough to enter their mailbox with your message. Don’t abuse this trust, but also don’t be afraid to send emails to build your business.
The recommended autoresponder and email list management service is Aweber, at least from my part, it is what works best for me for sure. The service is easy to set up and you can set up an email sequence quickly and easily on the back end.
Start with some sort of incentive for people to opt-in. A short infoproduct usually does the trick. Once they have confirmed their subscription to your list, you will want a series of emails to go out over the course of several days or perhaps longer.
An autoresponder sequence should run from several days to even a few weeks. Mix in informational and promotional messages, or save the promotional message for the final email. Test different sequences and stick with the one that has the highest open, click through and conversion rates.
4. Hire A Community Manager
They should understand how to properly engage with your audience, create an engaging social media post appropriate for each platform, and how to create reports showing you what has been done and what the return on investment has been for the previous time period.
A community manager needs to recognize that the goal is to build a business, not to spend the day on trivial conversations that won’t lead to more money.
Working your way towards a passive income online should be fun, but it should also ensure that the “goal remains the goal”. In this case, the goal is more money.
5. Outsource As Much As Possible
Finally, the key to making a passive income online is to outsource as much as possible. While it can take a lot of work to build the brand awareness, authority and overall momentum needed to reach your financial goals, you can streamline this by outsourcing.
“Earning any type of income online takes a lot of hard work, a lot of patience and a little bit of luck too.”
– Pat Flynn
Sure, hard work, patience and a bit of luck are part of the price of doing business. If you do all the work on your own, that hard work will seem never ending, the patience will wear thin, and the luck will see like it’s going to everyone else but you.
Everything that can be outsourced effectively should be. Content can be outsourced if you do it right. So can social media and SEO.
For many, design on blogs is an overlooked opportunity to hire an outsourced worker. A blog with poor design will often repel visitors before they have a chance to read past a headline.
Along the way, you will likely find other tasks that seemed important have become a bit more menial than you first thought. Outsource these tasks as well, whatever they may be.
Remember to hire the best workers you can find at a reasonable price. If you hire a worker who has trouble understanding and executing your instructions, it may be more of a hindrance than a help.
Paying more for reliable workers may seem like a bad idea, but if it helps your business grow at five times the rate as cheaper and less reliable workers, then that’s a good decision and moves you a step closer to building a passive income online.
Work Hard Now To Work Less Later
There is no such thing as a turnkey business solution on the internet. It will always take some work and an eye for detail. However, if you put in the effort now, make prudent business decisions and maybe catch a break or two, you can make a passive income online.
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Sources for images: Flickr & Google