There are so many ways to create an independent lifestyle for yourself. There are no get rich quick schemes here. Yes, you have to put in the work but the results can be great. Actually, if there is one piece of advice I can give it would be to get rich slow and build a valuable, business that you design around the lifestyle you’d like to have. If you provide value, you will see results. Plain and simple.
Everyone can do something on this list! Many location independent money makers generate profits from multiple income streams so don’t be afraid to try something new!
- Become a blogger: establish yourself as an expert and build a community around you. Blogging can pay off big time but it can also take quite some time to grow. Provide value and followers will come.
- Authority Sites: such sites are all about providing a “go to” site around a particular niche. Once you have good traffic you can begin monetizing by selling your own product, adsense, other advertisements, and affiliate products.
- Become a Freelance Writer (you knew this was coming, didn’t you?!): There are tons of writing opportunities out there. Check out sites such as InfoBarrel or Squidoo to write articles and get paid.
- Sell an eBook: this is a great way to earn extra money if you can offer a unique perspective or solve a problem this can be a great seller.
- Write a Book to Sell on Kindle (Amazon): this is becoming very popular and Amazon offers a great marketing platform. Learn more >
- Pay-Per-Post Articles: if you already have a blog you can get paid to write reviews. Check out SponsoredReviews or BlogVertise.
- Ghostwriter: offer your writing services to others who want a book written but don’t want to do the work.
- Copywriting: if you have the skills to write sales letters you can earn great money doing just that. If you want to learn the skill check out the American Writers & Artists, Inc. course.
- Business Plan Writer: businesses still need business plans to present to investors and to get loans. Other business owners are looking for simplified business plans just to get their ideas in order.
Got a Specific Skill?
- Translator: speak other languages? Take advantage of it!
- Become a Freelancer: whether you are good at designing, writing, or even miscellaneous jobs – look for jobs on sites such as Elance or oDesk.
- Web Design: if you can design even a half way decent site there is room for you to help out businesses and non-profits.
- Design Print Materials: from business cards and posters to stickers and rack cards for businesses. Earn extra money from getting them printed and sent to the customer. Order through a white label wholesaler such as VistaPrint.
- Create Website Templates: have an eye for design? Build website templates for different open source software such as WordPress and Joomla.
- Create CMS Extensions: can you think of tools website owners would find helpful? Create extensions or plugins for platforms such as WordPress or Joomla.
- Build Software: software is a very lucrative field if it’s done right. If you solve a problem for an industry, you may have the key.
- Create iPhone Apps: both free and paid apps can make money. Finding an untapped or underdeveloped niche is hard but if you can find one that fills a void you may have what it takes.
- Video Editing: Businesses are creating videos every day for promotion on their website, YouTube, and other video websites. To stand out, quality is super important. If you can edit videos, add text, intros, links, etc. you’ll have a job.
- Become an Accountant: find accounting gigs online on VirtualVocations, FlexJobs or Craigslist.
- Virtual Tax Preparer: with everyone so busy it can be so hard to find the time to visit a tax office to get your taxes done. As a virtual tax preparer, clients can send you their documents and you can work on them anytime. Many CPA’s also outsource some of their work during the busy season.
Want Your Own Website?
- Build Micro Niche Sites: such sites are built around a very specific niche such as red dog collars. Finding high searched for keywords with low competition is your best bet. You can also monetize with adsense, advertisements, and affiliate products.
- Affiliate Marketing: create a website around a particular affiliate product or offer affiliate products on your current website (Check out this great post on ProBlogger about Popular Affiliate Programs for Small to Medium Sized Blogs)
- Private Label Reseller: many companies who have an affiliate program also have a reseller program. As a private label reseller you can resell the companies products under your own brand name. A popular private label reseller option is web hosting.
- Create an Online Store: sell your own products or sell others products with an e-commerce site.
- Start a Drop Shipping Business: if you don’t want to deal with storing and shipping products but like the idea of an e-commerce store, drop shipping gives you the opportunity to sell a company’s products while they do all the shipping (white label, of course). Check out World Wide Brands for tons of legit drop shipping companies.
- Buy Websites: if you can’t think of a website you’d like to start or you cringe at the idea of starting one from scratch, think about buying an already established website. Check out Flippa, one of the most popular marketplaces for buying websites.
- Flip Websites: if you don’t like to work on the same project for too long before you get bored, flipping websites may be for you. The idea is very similar to flipping houses. You purchase a website at a low price, make improvements and resell it for a profit.
- Start a Directory: and become the go to site for information and resources on a particular topic. Create a directory of wedding photographers, home health aides or other services.
- Teach Something: if you are good (I’m not even saying great), you can offer an online course to teach others how to…build a website, perfect their copy writing skills, learn the ins and outs of social media marketing, etc. What do you know how to do that you could share with others?
- Host Webinars in Your Area of Expertise: webinars can be have a very high profit margin. With the right marketing (and the right topic, of course) you can easily sell webinars.
- Be an Expert: many websites allow users to ask questions and pay for the best answer that helps them. Try JustAnswer.
- Become an Online College Professor: more and more people are getting their education online which means there are more and more online teaching opportunities.
- Podcaster: many people, especially bloggers, are taking their business to the next level through podcasting. Earn money by offering podcasts for “members only” or by selling your products and / or promoting affiliate products. Check out Pat Flynn’s free Podcasting Tutorial.
- Online Tutoring: times have changed and you know longer have to meet at the library to offer your tutoring services! Work with companies such as Tutor.com.
- Online Training: offer online training of your own. Do you know how to use Excel, write web code or other things? People don’t have time to travel to meet someone so more and more people are looking for help online (or on the phone).
- Online Classes: Services like Udemy let you set-up and offer your own online course.
- Offer In-Person Classes: no matter where you are you can advertise your impromptu classes from yoga and cooking to sewing and painting.
- Teach the Teacher: if you teach others, why not teach others how to teach the same thing. It’s a train the trainer type of option.
How About Working With People?
- Photographer: offer your photography services anywhere including maternity, newborn, family or wedding photography.
- Marketing Coach: if you know how to create movement in small businesses you will always have customers.
- Life Coach: everyone is always talking about setting goals, building businesses, traveling, and on and on – help them out by being a life coach.
- Consultant: analyze, advise and train clients to make the best decisions.
- Welcome Tour Guide- live in a popular area? Help new residents settle in and learn the area.
- Niche Tours: offer tours to tourists (or locals) with a specific twist. For example, you’ll have better luck offering night tours of seeing the monuments in Washington, DC than just a tour on Washington, DC.
- Scuba Dive Instructor: what fun! Imagine all the exciting places you could go and work in the crystal clear waters (if you do this and you want a partner let me know!).
- Virtual Assistant: provide support to a business owner such as calling clients, updating websites, responding to emails and more all from wherever you want!
- Customer Service Representative: companies need customer support teams to handle their website’s live chat, email/support tickets and phone calls.
- TeleHealth: the medical field is expanded online. Telenurses, for example, assess, plan, intervene and evaluate health using online technologies and the phone. This is a growing field.
Hate Working on Computers?
- Language Teacher: it’s hard to go anywhere where an English teacher isn’t needed. Enough said.
- Musician: play guitar (or another instrument)? Take it on the road.
- Buy real estate: if you have the funds, buying real estate can not only bring you money down the road after your house has had time to appreciate, it can bring you immediate income for renting it out.
- Property Manager: manage other people’s properties. Find renters, fix problems that arise and handle the money (all for a cut, of course).
- Importer: ever traveled somewhere and discovered amazing Alpaca scarves or decorative mirrors for cheap that you can’t find at home? Purchase enough products to sell in your hometown (or on your website) for a nice profit.
- Professional Caretaker: yes, people pay for others to stay in their home while on vacation or to stay with their pets to they have company. Stay overnight or just check-in and pick up the mail.
- Sell Stock Photos: I know, I know…you’ve heard this BUT if you have lots of photos you really can make money from stock photography. Especially when traveling you have an opportunity to capture some unique shots.
- Create your own crafts or artwork and sell on sites such as Etsy.
- On-The-Phone Interpreter: companies can call you and receive interpretation support via the phone.
- Manage Social Media Campaigns: almost everyone has social media profiles but struggle to keep up with them all. This is where you come in. Use tools to make your job easier such as HootSuite.
- Domain Parking: money is earned by placing ads on domains that do not have websites set-up. High ranking domains with traffic can earn income from users clicking on ads. This typically requires a high number of domains.
- Craigslist Poster: many businesses turn to Craigslist for free advertising with little to no success. Posting on Craiglist has become a specialty.
- Create YouTube Videos: Videos can lead viewers to your affiliate products, your own product or even your service website. Businesses also need videos created for them to help drive more traffic to their website (Google loves videos – although that’s not much of a surprise since they own YouTube!). So whether you create them to build your business or to help build others businesses, its a very popular service these days. Generate enough views and you can earn money from just from people viewing your video. Learn more >
- Business Flipping: Whether online or offline, people have made a living off of creating businesses only to sell them once they start generating a profit, others buy businesses, build them up and sell them.
- Email Marketing: As an email marketer, you can design e-newsletters and draft content for businesses. Email marketing is still one of the top ways to sell products and services. Many businesses know its importance but don’t have the time to do it.
Don’t Think You Have Any Skills? (although there is no way this is true)
- Outsource: if you can’t (or just don’t want to) perform certain tasks you can always take on jobs and then outsource them while you oversee the project to completion. Take web design for an example, you can find the customer, generate the proposal, and then outsource the actual development work.
- Data Entry: type quickly and accurately? Prove it and you can provide data entry services. Don’t forget to search for jobs on Freelancer or oDesk.
- Become a Reseller: reselling products or services means you don’t have to create something of your own to sell. Reselling hosting services is a popular option, for example.
- Transcribe Audio: as podcasting is quickly growing in popularity, more and more people need to have their podcasts transcribed so the transcription can be posted to their website to be indexed by search engines and read by site visitors.
- Medical Coder: be a part of the medical billing process and telecommute!
Still Not Sure?
- Telecommute: that’s right, don’t be afraid to ask your current employer if you can telecommute. Make your case!
- Do odd jobs and get lots of different experiences. Check out Work Your Way Around the World which tells you how to do just that.
- Internet Researcher: if you’re good at finding information, you can do the work others don’t have the time to do.
- Proofreading: with so many writers publishing content for a variety of media, proofreaders are needed to ensure the product is ready to be published.
- Become a SEO Professional: effective marketing of an online business will make or break it. If you can increase traffic and sales for online businesses, you’ll never run out of work. SEO tends to appear much more complex than it needs to be. There is plenty of good information and software out there to help you such as SEOMoz.
- Travel Agent: help individuals, families and companies arrange their travel plans. Some travel agencies also offer telecommuting positions.
What did I miss? What would you like to do?