Internet Entrepreneur
Six Ways to Make Money Working Anywhere

By Steve Gillman, author of 101 Weird Ways to Make Money.

Long before I started writing 101 Weird Ways to Make Money, I had been involved in a few odd ways myself. I was a process server, tracking down defendants in lawsuits in order to hand them their court papers. I sold stuffed animals in mason jars, a creation I dubbed “canned critters.” I was a real estate researcher, locating empty land that investors could buy and develop.

When my wife and I started our internet business, was one of the first websites. It detailed all the strange ways money can be made. We created sites about ultralight backpacking, metaphorology, and dozens of other topics. From the start it was clear that internet publishing could be done from wherever we wanted to live. Even better, we could work while traveling. In fact the whole business could essentially be carried on a flash drive. With that portability in mind, here are six ways to make money as an internet entrepreneur, from anywhere in the world.

1. Start a Niche Newsletter

If you’re an expert—or you want to do a bit of research to become one—why not publish a newsletter online? Create a following with a weekly issue sent out by email. Auto-responder programs will handle the mailing part for you. My own Brainpower Newsletter has 39,000 subscribers who get a new issue every Sunday morning, and if I’m going on a trip I just load up the next couple issues to go out automatically. You make money with advertising, commissions from affiliate programs, or from selling your own products. This is a business that can be started for under $100.

2. Give Away E-Books

I wrote an e-book on how to buy a cheap home (during the bubble), and sold it for $27. I’m not all that good at writing a sales page, so this income stream was a trickle. Then I offered visitors to the website the option to get the book for free a chapter at a time by email. The chapters were hosted on the site, the weekly emails directed the reader to these otherwise hidden pages, and the advertising revenue on them soon exceeded what I had been making in sales. I also offered the book at a new price of $7 for readers who were impatient, and made more in total sales than at the higher price. That’s just one of several ways you can make money giving away e-books, and you can do it all while sitting on a beach somewhere.

3. Be a Freelance Content Provider

The internet has created a huge demand for writers. Even those who can barely put a sentence together in English are selling their unique content for websites and blogs, although they make as little as $5 for 500 words. Fortunately, the better writers are paid better wages. I hired a writer through and pay him $18 to $22 per page for website content. His goal, which I think he accomplishes, is to make at least $20 per hour. He has many clients and he lives in Israel. You get to live and work from anywhere as a freelance content provider.

4. Sell Something and Outsource

You might think you need to be in one place to sell physical products online. Not so. There are manufacturers who will ship the products you sell online, using your own company label. There are also ways to outsource the location-specific parts of almost any internet-based business. In his best-selling book, “The 4-Hour Work Week,” Timothy Ferriss explains how he started selling nutritional supplements online, putting the start-up costs on a credit card. After quickly building his business to $40,000 in monthly income, he outsourced all the work so he could travel the world—only to see sales rise even further while he was gone.

5. Buy and Sell Online Property

I know a domain-name investor who has sold “.com” names for tens of thousands of dollars—ones which he bought for a few hundred dollars. He buys most of his names for less than $100 as they go through deletion auctions (people forget or choose not to pay the annual renewal fee). While he waits for buyers he uses one of the many services which monetize undeveloped domains with advertising. I’ve dabbled at this. For example, I bought (note the lack of the dot after the “www”) for $300 and sold it for $700. Other investors buy developed websites, clean them up and resell them for a profit. It isn’t easy, but it is something you can do with a laptop in Bangkok or from any other place you would like to be.

6. Create a Niche Blog

Write about feet, beer, cats, racing? You can find successful blogs on all of these subjects and more. If you have a passion for a subject, why not share it? While you're at it, put advertising on that blog, either of the pay-per-click variety or affiliate ads that make commissions for you.

For example, I recently learned that many women who have a spouse in the military have turned to blogging for extra income. If you have family members in the military you might know something about military taxes or about the educational options for people leaving the armed forces, and you can blog about that. You could then recommend tax software or student loans for a commission.

You can also sell something of your own. I sell e-books because they can be delivered automatically whether or not I am at my desk, but almost anything can be sold online and marketed through blog. Some bloggers have built six-figure incomes from their work—and some let others do much of the writing for them, making this even easier.

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