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99+ Income Stream Ideas To Generate Extra Revenue

Written by on January 28, 2019

If you want to survive as a business, you want to be earning more than you’re spending.

While this may sound obvious, this is not the case for most SMBs and startups.

9 out of 10 startups fail.  And one of the most common reasons for failure is mismanaging your finances.

If you don’t keep careful track of your cash flows, you then risk getting into debt which can snowball out of control.

While online accounting software can help you manage your money better, there are still many other challenges you’ll face as an SMB.

But if you want to be more secure in your finances, then you should strongly consider building multiple income streams. With multiple streams, you’re avoiding putting all your eggs in one basket.

This is the basic principle of diversification.

You’re no longer relying solely on your main net income. And instead, you’re banking on several streams to cover your expenses.

In a nutshell, having multiple income streams mean more ways to make money. The most basic streams are having a product and/or selling services online.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg.

In this guide, we’ll be looking at the different ways you can add income streams to your business based on three different categories: ones related to your business, passive income that you earn while you sleep and investments that pay off.

If you’re interested in leveling up your business and taking things to the next level, consider implementing the many income stream sources below.

Business ventures

Income-Streams-Business-Ventures
First, we’ll be looking at income streams that are closely tied with your business of expertise.

As a business, you already should have a primary income source (i.e. something you specialize in).

But just because you specialize in one thing doesn’t mean you shouldn’t branch out and experiment with other fields. No matter your expertise, you can always pursue a side hustle to bring in an additional revenue stream.

Though your mileage might vary depending on what you do and your niche, you can still incorporate ideas to venture outside your circle.

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Offer additional services

Chances are, if you have built your business around a specific knowledge or skill, you have the opportunity to train others trying to do the same.

This opens up a world of possibilities.

If you’re seeking to add an income stream or two to your business, consider working closely with what you’re already familiar with.

Coaching

Take a look at your business.

Are you offering services?

If so, is it under an all-in-one umbrella approach?

If that’s the case, what you can do is split up your services and start segmenting them based on specific targeting.  Regardless of your niche, there are people out there just starting to get into the field. If you’re already an established influencer, there’s a whole untapped market out there.

If that’s the case and you have certain specific skills, you have the opportunity to coach those just getting in your niche.

Write a book

Similarly, you can take your business knowledge and expertise and write a book.

Writing a book gives you a lot of wiggle room as you can zoom in on specific fields and give a unique twist on them (since your experience is unique to you alone). 

But if that sounds too intimidating, you can opt-in for an e-book as well. This also gives you an added advantage of having another lead generation tool.

Of course, this is just the beginning for your business venture related income streams.

Here are some other ways you can implement an additional revenue stream or save money that’s related to your business:

  • Sell additional services.
  • Consulting.
  • One on one specialized services.
  • Create and sell your own products.
  • Build a SaaS (software as a service).
  • Act as a business accelerator.
  • Teach a class about your business field.
  • Sell/advertise other people’s products (or services).
  • Create a class, workshop, seminar or some other event.
  • Be a paid speaker about your expertise.
  • License one of your program or services.
  • Use accounting software and online invoicing to save money.
  • See what experts in your niche are doing to save money.
  • Create a membership site.
  • Create and monetize a blog.
  • Start a side hustle in your downtime.
  • Start freelancing.
  • Create an app.
  • Get listed locally on Google
  • Get started as a virtual assistant.
  • Become a digital publisher.
  • Start your own agency.
  • Offer automatization services to other businesses.
  • Utilize email marketing to sell more.
  • Outsource some parts of your business activities.
  • Start writing content for other people based on your knowledge.
  • Consider offering offline services.
  • Help startups in writing their business plan.
  • Teach your expertise.
  • Become a personal trainer in your field.
  • Become a virtual assistant in your niche.
  • Become an influencer in your social media posts.

Passive income

Income-Streams-Passive-Income
Passive income is like a piggy bank that grows without you doing anything.

This is the type of revenue stream that most businesses pursue and dream of.

Passive income is the money you earn while sleeping. It’s something that you can leave on its own and it’ll generate you money without your involvement.

If done well, it can greatly benefit your business and give you more freedom.

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Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a great way to make passive income and is especially easy to set up if you already have a website (even better if you already have an audience too).

By setting up an affiliate link, you earn commision from promoting other people’s products (or services). You find a product you like and trust, promote it to others (your audience) and earn a cut on each sale you make.

When it comes to affiliate marketing, there are three distinct parties involved: the advertiser, the publisher, and the consumer.

Create and sell online courses

This is another popular way to generate a passive income.

To successfully create an online course, focus on what you know first and foremost. Once you create a value-packed course that helps solve a specific problem or a need – you then need to focus on marketing it and making sure it gets in front of people’s eyes.

When you get the ball rolling, you then start generating money each time someone signs up for your blog.

Some other ways to start generating a passive income include:

  • Start an online eCommerce store
  • Start selling goods online (eBay, Amazon, Etsy, etc.).
  • Create and monetize YouTube videos through AdSense.
  • Create a blog.
  • Create a side business and give it to someone else to run.
  • Build an online store and outsource the work.
  • Create a book review website.
  • Buy expensive equipment and rent it out.
  • Buy an existing online business.
  • Buy bulk products from overseas and sell them at a high margin locally.
  • Invest in a startup or a real world business.
  • Design products and sell them online.
  • Start giving away helpful content for free and set up a donation link (Patreon, Paypal, etc.).
  • Flipping thrift shop hauls.
  • Rent out your room/house when you’re away on sites like Airbnb.
  • Start driving with Uber or other car sharing apps to make money while running errands.
  • Use sites like Swagbucks and InboxDollars to make money in the background while using your computer.
  • Buy a blog that’s already making money and hire someone to manage it for you.
  • Write a Kindle book (easier than ever to get published on Amazon).
  • Start network marketing.
  • Add Google Adsense to show ads on your platform.
  • Create a comparison site.
  • Install an ATM locally.
  • Create a lead collection website and sell leads to businesses around the world.
  • Buy and flip website domain names for profit.
  • Sell stock photos online.
  • Buy a vending machine and install it locally.
  • Transform your car into a walking advertisement (through sites like Wrapify).
  • Buy an existing laundromat and have someone manage it for you while you get a cut of the profit.
  • Start mining cryptocurrency on a graphics card you don’t use anymore.

Investing

Income-Streams-Investing-Stream
Possibly the hardest type of revenue stream you can add to your business but the one with the biggest payoff.

Finally, the last category of income streams we’ll cover today is about investing.

This is possibly the riskiest type of revenue stream we’ll be looking at but also has the biggest payoff if done right.

In this section, we’ll be looking at income streams that require a little bit of capital for you to put in to get the ball rolling.

Depending on your experience in investing and what you invest in – it may either pay off or backfire. So, as a rule of thumb, never invest more than you’re willing to lose.

Real Estate

Real estate is a great way to earn money while sleeping. But since buying a home costs so much, there are cheaper platforms that focus on crowdfunding real estate that you can invest in.

If you want a relatively easy and low-cost way to invest in crowdfunded real estate, look into platforms like Fundrise which require just up to $500 to get started.

Realty Mogul requires a minimum of $1,000 investment but has lower annual fees (0.30-0.50%).

Finally, one of the most accessible ways to invest in real estate is through Rich Uncles, where you can start investing in student housing REIT with as little as $5

Cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency is another intimidating investing area due to its volatility, but on the bright side, you can start investing with as much as you want.

It’s worth noting that most of the cryptocurrency market is extremely volatile and day trading is still risky.

However, you can use the volatility to your advantage and hold onto your savings until your portfolio rises again. And what makes crypto so accessible is that everyone everywhere can get started with little to no effort.

It’s a revenue stream definitely worth looking into and one of the best ways to learn more about blockchain is by directly interacting with it.

So, you have to spend money to make money, right?

Then here’s a list of other revenue streams you can try investing in:

  • Dividend income from investing in stocks.
  • Peer-to-peer lending.
  • Open a high-yield account.
  • Buy index funds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).
  • Invest with the help of a portfolio manager, financial advisor or robot advisors.
  • Invest in a rental property.
  • Invest in a business that’s just starting out.
  • Invest in a royalty income (music royalties).
  • Invest in private equity.
  • Invest in an initial public offering (IPO).
  • Invest in an initial coin offering (ICO).
  • Crowdsource in real estate.
  • Daytrade penny stocks.
  • Daytrade cryptocurrency altcoins.
  • Get a rental property.
  • Certificates of deposit (CDs).
  • Fixed income/bonds.
  • Use cash back credit cards.
  • Invest in mortgage notes.
  • Become an angel investor.
  • Become a private lender.
  • Become an affiliate partner.
  • Sponsor influencers on social media to promote your products.
  • Look into automating parts of your business.
  • Outsource tasks to a virtual assistant.
  • Advertise your business on other people’s websites.
  • Sponsor emails (similar to influencer marketing).
  • Invest in startups.
  • Create a white-label product.
  • Start a separate online business.
  • Flip cars for a higher profit margin.
  • Become a wholesaler.

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