The inflation rate is at a record high, and most households struggle to make ends meet with their current pay.
Even with side hustles, there is not enough money to pay your bills. But what if you had a business that requires little to no investment but earns money even in your sleep? I am talking about passive income businesses.
This article addresses 7 passive income ideas with little or no money to help you supplement your income. Read on to find out.
What Is Passive Income?
Passive income is the income you earn from a business or investment that doesn’t require continuous input. You do the initial work to establish the business or make the investment, allowing it to generate income without further work.
While passive income ideas are flaunted as easy money, they result from hard work and patience. Growing your business or investment takes time and sacrifices before you can reap results. If you want quick cash, this may not be an ideal opportunity for you.
Passive income ideas are for patient individuals who want to watch their investments grow through effort.
7 Passive Income Ideas For Those With Little Money
If you want to build passive income streams to improve your standard of living or retire early, check out these strategies and learn how to succeed with them. We’ll also discuss the pros and risks associated with each idea.
1- Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing allows you to earn commissions when someone buys a product you recommended through a referral link on your website or social media post. It is a viable source of passive income because once you recommend the product, you earn without doing anything else.
The work involved:
Before earning from affiliate marketing, you need to build an audience through blogs, YouTube channels, and other social media platforms. To build a loyal following, you’ll consistently create valuable content.
Your audience should trust you as an authority or expert in your niche. Once you’ve earned their trust, they will likely buy relevant products you recommend.
Pros Of Affiliate Marketing:
- It is easy to execute: The brand handles physical products and fulfills the orders.
- It is low-risk: Joining affiliate programs is free hence a good passive income idea for those with little or no money.
- It is scalable: You can create new campaigns or introduce new products while earning from old projects.
Challenges Of Affiliate Marketing:
- Running a blog will take time to create content and build substantial traffic for your affiliate.
- It also takes time to build social media following, and there is no guarantee they will buy from you.
2- Start a Dropshipping Store
If you are looking for one of the best passive income ideas to make money, even if you have little money, to begin with, think dropshipping.
You can make as high as $100,000 per year from dropshipping, although it takes investment upfront to succeed.
How does dropshipping work? You create an e-commerce store on your website or marketplaces like Amazon with products. Customers browse and buy the products in your store. But since you don’t store the goods, you forward their orders to the supplier, who packages and sends them to the customer.
Once the customer pays for the goods, you send money to the supplier and retain your profits.
Some people confuse affiliate marketing with dropshipping; discover the difference in our guide on Dropshipping vs. Affiliate marketing.
Pros Of Starting Dropshipping:
- Low startup costs: Dropshipping requires a minimal upfront investment since you don’t need to purchase inventory or pay for storage space.
- Flexibility: You can work from anywhere and at any time.
- Scalability: It is relatively easy to scale up your business without incurring additional overhead costs.
- Minimal risk: There is no risk of being stuck with unsold products.
- Streamlined order fulfillment: You don’t have to worry about packing and shipping products.
Challenges Of Starting Dropshipping:
- High competition- Dropshipping is a crowded marketplace, making it difficult to stand out and attract customers.
- Dependence on suppliers- Your success heavily depends on your suppliers.
- It can be complicated to manage and track multiple orders from different suppliers.
- Your profit margins are generally lower than if you purchase wholesale inventory and sell it directly.
3- Start a Print-on-Demand Shop
Print-on-demand is the best passive income idea for artists or designers who want to monetize their creativity.
How does print-on-demand shop work? You choose one of the low-competition niches and contact suppliers to customize their products like posters, t-shirts, stationery, or backpacks and sell them on a pre-order basis.
Alternatively, you select a print-on-demand provider like Printiful, Gelato, or Printify, upload your file, choose an ideal product to sell, and promote it on your online store.
Once a customer buys the design, you send it to suppliers who print and deliver it. Print-on-demand is an ideal passive income stream because you earn with little effort once you’ve set up the store and automated sales and marketing process.
Pros Of Starting a Print-on-Demand Shop:
- It is relatively cheap to start a POD business.
- There is no need to keep inventory or worry about managing stock.
- POD allows individuals to create and sell custom-designed products.
Challenges Of Starting a Print-on-Demand Shop:
- POD platforms often take a significant percentage of the sale price as their commission, leaving you with low-profit margins.
- You have limited control over the production process and the quality of the final product.
- There is stiff competition in the POD market, and it can take time to stand out.
4- Invest in Real Estate
Most billionaires invest their money in real estate as a source of passive income. But what if you have little money that can’t buy a house or finance a mortgage? You can still invest in real estate and make money.
Here are some ways you can invest in real estate with little money:
- Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs): These companies own and manage income-producing real estate properties such as apartments, office buildings, and shopping centers.
- The corporation chooses which assets to invest in and pays investors dividend income from profits.
- Real Estate Crowdfunding: Crowdfunding platforms allow you to invest your money with others in a specific real estate project. It is a low-cost investment since the platform pools money from many investors. You earn returns from that particular investment.
- Real Estate Partnerships: You can also form a partnership with other investors to invest in real estate with little money.
Pros Of Investing in Real Estate:
- It is a lucrative long-term investment
- You begin earning money immediately
- It provides a steady stream of income
- Real estate appreciates over time
- Tax benefits like mortgage interest, property taxes, and depreciation lower your tax liability and increase your cash flow.
Cons Of Investing in Real Estate:
- High initial investment: Even if you pool resources, it requires a significant amount of capital upfront.
- Real estate investors are responsible for maintaining their properties, which is costly and time-consuming.
- Real estate investors may face tenant issues, such as non-payment of rent, property damage, and eviction proceedings.
4- Create a Blog or YouTube Channel
Are you an expert in your niche? Do you have a passion for certain subjects? You can write about it on your blog or create YouTube videos and talk about it.
Find the right niche for your blog and become an expert on it. Ensure you write top-notch content that is useful for your readers. Good YouTube or Blog content helps build your audience to sell to.
You can increase your traffic to your content and optimize your blog for ad revenue.
Blogs and YouTube channels continue to generate revenue years after publication. Some ways to make money with blogs and YouTube channels include:
- Affiliate marketing
- Sponsored posts
- Direct advertising
- Google AdSense
Pros Of Creating a Blog or YouTube Channel:
- You retain creative control over your work
- You earn money long after creating a YouTube Video or publishing a blog.
- It is easy to set up
Challenges Of Creating a Blog or YouTube Channel:
- Writing and editing top-notch blogs and YouTube videos is time-consuming
- Blogs require regular updates to maintain high traffic.
5- Sell an Online Course
Besides publishing blogs and creating YouTube channels, you can turn your knowledge into an online course. You can post your content on platforms like Thinkific or teachable and host your course on your website.
It can be a recorded video where people pay and follow even when you aren’t there. Online courses generate income while you sleep.
Pros Of Selling an Online Course:
- You can start it from anywhere
- It requires a little cost to start
- You can earn 100% profit
Challenges Of Selling an Online Course:
- It requires time to learn how to create a course if you’re a newbie
- No guarantee someone will buy
6- Create an App
If you are good with coding and app development, you can create one and sell it on Google Play or Apple App Store. While these apps are free, you can attract advertisers willing to pay for ad spaces within the app.
Once you’ve created a helpful app with good reviews, it will earn advertisement revenue without major work from you.
Pros Of Creating an App:
- You have a broader market coverage
- It allows you to put your development skills to use
Challenges Of Creating an App:
- The initial development cost is high
- It requires ongoing maintenance and updates
7- Invest in High-Yield Savings Accounts
Saving money in a high-yield or CDC account is a great passive income idea. You identify a bank or financial institution with a high compound interest rate and earn monthly income once your savings earn interest.
However, ensure the inflation rate is lower than the interest rate; otherwise, the value of your money will depreciate.
Financial institutions provide instruments such as money market funds and fixed deposit accounts with high yields.
The more deposit little money every month with these institutions, the higher the yield. This is what we call “your money working for you.”
Pros Of Investing in High-Yield Savings Accounts:
- Minimal maintenance cost
- High-revenue potential
Challenges Of Investing in High-Yield Savings Accounts:
- You may not access your funds in the short-term
- Interest is subject to taxation.
How Can I Make $1000 a Month Passively?
You can make $1000 per month passively by
- Starting a YouTube channel or creating a blog
- Sell an eBook
- Join an affiliate program
- Invest in real estate
- Sell an online course.
However, it will take time before you earn this amount monthly
What Can I Sell as a Side Hustle?
The most profitable side hustles include:
- Dropshipping business
- Selling print-on-demand designs
- Selling handcrafted products.
- Selling services as a freelancer.
- Selling digital information products.
How Can I Invest in Dividend-Paying Stocks?
You can invest in dividend-paying stocks through a brokerage account, a traditional broker, or a robo-advisor.
How Do I Start a Blog or YouTube Channel?
To start a blog, you must choose a niche and create a website using blogging sites such as WordPress or Squarespace.
To start a YouTube channel, you will need to create a Google account and upload videos to the platform.
How Do I Rent Out a Spare Room on Airbnb?
Here is how you rent out a spare room on Airbnb. You’ll need to create an account and list your room on the Airbnb platform, describe the room, set a price, and respond to any inquiries from potential renters.
What Is Affiliate Marketing?
Affiliate marketing is a marketing strategy in which an individual or company promotes a product or service and earns a commission for each sale or lead generated through their referral link.