You’re already an online shopping ninja, so it just makes sense to get money back for something you’re going to do anyway. Ebates is one of the biggest names in cash-back sites that reward you for shopping with their retail partners. For Ebates, that includes biggies like Walmart and Amazon. Ebates pays you back a portion of your spending through a check or PayPal and it’s free to use.
As you start regularly putting out content, you’ll hopefully start to build a bit of an audience. But to start seeing real money from YouTube you need to market your videos elsewhere. Share your channel on Twitter and Facebook. Distribute videos anywhere else you can think of. Also, interact with comments and build a community around the videos you’re making so people will share it with their friends.
My 10-year-old son brought home a book from our park’s free library box. It was a biology textbook – teachers edition. He said it looked interesting and hey, it was free (having no idea you could sell it). I scanned it in my Amazon seller app and realized it was worth around $150. He was so excited. We listed it for sale for $130 and it sold! Going to tell him, he just made $130!
If you have a flair for sales copy you could try your hand at selling products for affiliates. While many people take the seedy route of selling diet pills and penis enlargement products, if you want to keep your conscience clear you’ll find that Amazon runs a very successful affiliate program that allows you to make money advertising any of the products for sale on their site. eBay also have a pretty good affiliate setup, with their top affiliates earning $1.3 Million a month, WOW!
There are numerous printing companies that will print your designs onto not just T-shirts, but also hoodies, hats, posters, cushions, bags, and phone cases, to name a few items. These businesses also offer fulfillment services. This means that you promote the merchandise on your own site and once you sell a product the printing company will not only print your design but also send the item directly to the buyer. So all you have to do is concentrate on the marketing and selling of your products, and the fulfillment company will take care of the rest.
That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t go after the easy money from things like ads, but you shouldn’t have that be your only way to make money. Ads may make you some extra money, but every click on these ads often earns you only pennies. Additionally, the folks who visit your pages don’t like ads, and if your page is slathered with them people won’t keep visiting your page, and they definitely won’t be clicking on those ads.
In most cases I prefer something that is more potentially passive than potentially scalable. Obviously it’s great to have everything, but given the choice I prefer income streams that just work and can be automated so you can do other things. You have to be careful to manage your desire to scale something with your desire to make it passive. Sometimes less is more because less gives you freedom.

If you’re looking for inspiration, my friend Michelle Schroeder-Gardner of the website Making Sense of Sense has become the expert on all things affiliate marketing. Michelle earns more than $100,000 per month from her blog and the bulk of her income comes from affiliate sales. Michelle has had so much success with affiliate marketing that she even has her own course called Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing.
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