Ever wanted to earn money whilst just sitting around doing nothing? Of course you have! It's a dream for most people, but get it right and achieving a 'passive' income can become a reality, leaving you to carry on earning cash whilst holidaying in the Bahamas, playing golf, or simply sitting around watching box-sets.
Become an advertiser
A popular way to earn money nowadays is by operating a website. It doesn't need to be as involved as it sounds once the site is up and running, but will require some administration to keep it ticking over. The basic idea is that you create a website on a niche subject (e.g. Bungee Jumping Naturalists), and then use an ad programs such as Google's 'Adwords' to show targeted ads on your site. You earn money from visitors to your site clicking on the ads, so there needs to be a focus on making your site unique enough to draw visitors, but not too niche so that it only appeals to a handful of people across the world.
Creating a website might seem like an impossible task if you're inexperienced, but plenty of hosting companies now offer 'website builder' software which can give you a professional looking design with minimal effort.
To get your website up it's likely that you'll need a little investment for the hosting space (unless you plan to run a server at home), but package prices are coming down all the time and it's likely you could get something for around £3 per month.
Become an affiliate
Similar to the idea above is that of becoming an affiliate. This also requires you to build a website, but has a slight twist – your website, whatever it might be about, also endorses certain products which you have an affiliate agreement with. This is seen time and time again with review sites, which favourably review an item and contain a link to purchase said item. The reader/customer is then redirected to the merchant's site to make a purchase and you earn a commission for the referral.
The trick is of course to get lots of people referred to make the commission and as such you'll need a good amount of people traffic through your site. It may sound overly complicated, but if you're a blogger with a decent following, you could consider incorporating an affiliate scheme into your blog posts to try it out.
You'll be surprised how much money some people make off Youtube; and that's not to say that these people are regularly uploading content – or even upload more than one video. Most mobile phones have a video-camera function these days, and if you use it often enough you might just be the auteur of a 'Charlie bit my finger' style video which could net you a small fortune if it attracts millions of views.
Long Term Investing
If you already have some savings you might consider investing it somewhere. There are many ways to invest the money. Most people think of investment as stocks and shares, but there's no reason to limit yourself to just that. Property is a sound long term investment if you can afford the initial outlay, or alternatively you might look into a trust or fund. Naturally investing carries a lot more risk than the methods mentioned above and isn't for the ignorant or feint hearted. If you've thinking of investing a chunk of money somewhere, you should look into getting a financial advisor to help you make informed decisions. Get it right and you could be quids in, living of the proceeds of annual dividends, or cashing in on your investment when it reaches a peak value.
The internet is a great outlet for creative individuals. It takes a little effort initially, but after a while you should be able to continue to reap the rewards of this grounds work and get paid for it creatively. If you draw, design, write, compose – or have any other creative talents, you can be sure that the internet has a forum for your skills somewhere. So many sites exist now where you can sell your artwork and other creations; and via a number of different mediums. You may not have considered it before, but you could design greeting cards, sell music – photos – stock footage, or even become a self published author on Amazon! The list is almost endless. The basic idea is that you do a piece of work once, then earn a repeating commission on any sales that you make. As the websites you'll be selling on already has a large amount of visitors each month, you're almost guaranteed sales if your work stands out.