How to Build a Passive Online Income Now

How to Build a Passive Online Income Now

Update of a post originally published in 2016.

The idea of earning passive income online sounds so enticing, doesn’t it? The good news is it’s also achievable! In today’s post, how to build a passive online income now, we’ll talk about the steps you can begin taking today to make this dream a reality.

But I will tell you upfront that the process is neither as easy nor as immediate as many of the scammers out there would lead you to believe.

Virtually nothing is entirely passive, and that’s certainly true of the approach we’ll discuss here today. Initially, it requires hard-work, dedication, and a high level of commitment. You will work hard upfront to reap benefits in the future.

But you’re worth the effort, aren’t you?

What is Passive Income?

Just to make sure we’re all on the same page, here’s how Wikipedia defines passive income.  Passive income is an income received on a regular basis, with little effort required to maintain it. A good example might be the on-going royalties received from writing a book.

There is definitely work required upfront to complete the writing process. But once you finish the book you can continue to receive income from the sale of your book for many years.

Active vs. Passive Income

Most of us earn the majority of our income from a 9 to 5 job. These earnings are a classic example of active income. We receive payment for our workplace endeavors for only as long as we are employed.

When employment ends, so do the wages. The beauty of passive income is that you don’t continue to trade time for money indefinitely. Initially, there will be a significant time investment, and you are unlikely to see any financial rewards for several months.

The process of building a passive income stream is not that different from any educational or training program where you develop skills and learn to implement those skills. But once you’ve laid the foundation and established the passive income stream, you can receive benefits for months or years into the future.

Keep in mind; we’re talking about online activities. The Internet is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year with global reach. Close to 3 billion (yes, that’s a “b” 

) people use the Internet every day.

Naturally, not all of those folks will be part of your target market, but the potential number of customers interested in almost any product is huge! Your mission is to establish an online presence and carve out an audience.

We’re all different. You may well prefer to continue trading time for money and choose to supplement your retirement income through a part-time job. There’s nothing wrong with that choice.

But, if you’re up for the challenge of trying something new, read on for some practical, no-nonsense guidance in creating future passive income. You can get started today with a free, no obligation, Starter Membership. Sound good? Here we go!

Create a Website with a Blog

The first essential element for building a passive income online is a website that includes a blog. Your website will be your forum for communicating with readers and disseminating your message. The blog component of your site allows you to continually provide updates and fresh information.

Trust me; I know this can sound intimidating. But very few website owners are computer gurus.

Make no mistake. There is a learning curve, and it involves hard work. But have you ever accomplished anything of value that didn’t require work? I’m also going to throw out a few advantages for your consideration.

Unlike the typical part-time job, you can work on your website from anywhere you have an Internet connection. You can also work on your time frame. Are you an early morning person like me? Or, maybe you prefer to sleep in and work later in the day. Perhaps you’d like to break things up and work in short bursts. All of these options are possible.

Here’s more food for thought. Learning new things is engaging and fascinating. As retirees, we know that lifelong learning is key to remaining mentally alert. Why not tackle a new skill that has earning potential? Just saying. 

Developing and building out your website involves:

There are various avenues for creating a website. Here’s my top recommendation because you don’t want to spend any money upfront and you need some training and step-by-step guidance to get you off on the right foot.

A free Starter Membership with Wealthy Affiliate fits the bill perfectly. Your Starter Membership includes 2 free websites, hosting for your websites, 10 free lessons, and more. If you’d like more details, please see my Wealthy Affiliate Review.

Ready to take the plunge now? Just click this button to explore Wealthy Affiliate today. You will not be asked for a credit card! This is a risk-free opportunity.

Take ACTion Now

Next Steps

Once you’ve created your website and have traffic regularly visiting your site, there are many possibilities for creating passive income streams. Here are 3 popular choices that many website owners pursue.

(1) Earn Commissions as an Affiliate Marketer

Affiliate marketers promote other people’s products in exchange for a commission. There are tens of thousands of product choices available. Affiliate marketing is my monetization strategy and my number one recommendation for new bloggers because getting started is easy.

I promote only products I believe in and use myself. Becoming an affiliate is a free, simple process that you can accomplish in moments. See my earlier post, How to Become an Amazon Affiliate Marketer, to get a sense of the simplicity of this approach.

(2) Sell Digital Products

Many website owners decide to create and sell digital products like e-books, photographic images or online courses. Creating these digital products will entail a significant upfront commitment, but once you’ve developed your product you can generate sales revenue for years to come.

Do you have a skill or hobby that you could teach others? If so, this might be the perfect avenue for you!

(3) Engage in Drop Shipping

Drop shipping entails creating an online store to sell products as a retailer. You do not maintain an inventory or handle shipping details. Drop shippers transfer customer orders to wholesalers. Many of us unknowingly engage in drop shipping transactions.

We order products from one company and realize upon receipt that a different entity shipped the goods. Drop shipping is somewhat more involved than affiliate marketing, but you are still able to avoid the overhead of handling a physical product. You can read more about drop shipping at Wikipedia.

Tweet: 3 Popular Ways Website Owners Use to Generate Passive Income

3 Popular Ways Website Owners Use to Generate Passive Income

In Summary

In today’s post, how to build a passive online income now, we’ve discussed some potential advantages of passive income over active income. We’ve also introduced 3 popular ways that website owners use to generate passive income streams.

Now, I’d love to hear from you.

Please share your thoughts on passive income generation in the comment section below. And, as always, if this post was helpful, please be sociable.

To your success!






Starting My Online Business Was a Wise Choice

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14 thoughts on “How to Build a Passive Online Income Now”

  1. I’ve been into the idea of blogging for quite some time now but as you probably already know – there seems an awful lot to learn to get it right!
    I feel I’d be alright with the content side of things but the promotion etc I would stink at!
    Do you know of any tutorials that will hep with this – free if possible?

    • Hi Chris,

      It’s true. As with most things, there is a fair amount for beginning bloggers to learn. This is why I recommend you seek training rather than trying to go it alone. One important way to “promote” your website is to learn proper search engine optimization techniques such as the appropriate use of keywords. Finding keywords for your website is one of the tutorials included in a free Starter Membership with Wealthy Affiliate. I hope you’ll give it a try as you have nothing to lose. Thanks for your comments and good luck!

  2. Passive income has been my dream for years. Like you mention it is not easy but certainly possible. If I had put as much work into my online marketing as I do into working for others, I would probably be wealthy by now.

    The biggest mistake I have made when trying to create an online business is not being able to concentrate on one thing. Going from niche to niche and method to method, I have made some money on the way but never managed to make it consistent.

    The key to success is to concentrate on one thing at a time and then work steadily towards your goal.

    Thank you


    • Hi Joakim,

      I think you are quite right. It’s extremely important to carefully select a niche that you are passionate about and then stick with it. I wish you good luck in achieving your online goals. Thanks for visiting my site.

  3. Hello and thanks for sharing your webpage. It is well-detailed and full of information. Thanks a lot for explaining and making everything look so easy. You have a beautiful website. All the best to you.

  4. You did a great job explaining this. I think many see the word “passive” and think that not much work is involved in earning money. Before it becomes passive we need to do the hard work first.

    • Hi Cathy,
      You’re so right, and I would not want to perpetuate that myth! Blogging itself is anything but passive 🙂 It requires a significant amount of work upfront. And yet, once you publish your blog posts, they’re out there on the Internet with the potential to generate income around the clock for years to come. I see that as an excellent investment. Thanks for your comments!

  5. Thank you for your insight on passive income opportunities. I like that you outlined the fact that no income is passive to start off with, as like with everything else of value in your life, you need to work hard at it in order to get it and then retain it – away from online commodities, look at relationships, and marriage!!! But the comparison you make between 9-5active work and passive online opportunities could not be more appropriate. I have bookmarked your site, as I intend to read more of your suggestions. Thank you. Giulia ??

    • Hi Giulia,
      Thanks so much for your comments. I’m pleased to hear you found my site useful. It’s very true that no income is passive initially. Creating a passive income stream takes hard work. We hope that at some point the investment will pay off and we will begin to see continuous returns. This is definitely possible with blogging. I appreciate your visiting my website.

  6. Hi Linda,

    Great article on how to build a passive online income now. I like the analogy of passive income to earning royalties from books one writes. I completely agree that starting an online business and making a profit is harder than most people would have you believe. You need to put in a lot of time and effort to build an online business and succeed.

    • Hi Josh,
      Good insights! Yes, like most things of value, building a successful online business and passive income stream does take a good bit of work and effort. It does help that the startup costs are minimal and the work schedule is very flexible, but the work factor can not be denied. The benefits are excellent but you do need a strong work ethic and patience. Thanks for adding to the conversation!

  7. Hi there. I just finished reading your article on earning a passive income and I thought I would just drop you a few lines to share my thoughts.

    It took me quite a while to learn the difference between working a normal job and working online. I thought that you would do a job and get paid for it online, just as you would in the 9-5 world! However, as you have pointed out in your article, this isn’t the case!

    I have been working online for a few years now and I love it. I’m at a stage now where I can say that I truly can make passive income, which is amazing. Occasionally I get paid for something that I have promoted months ago. Now that’s a very nice surprise!

    • Hi Andrew,

      I really appreciate you joining the conversation and adding your experiences. I’m also excited to hear that you love working online as much as I do. The opportunity to generate passive income is definitely an awesome aspect of an online business. I have a post I wrote 5 months ago that’s currently enjoying a huge surge in popularity and it’s very exciting. You begin to recognize the enormous benefits of growing your content base and targeting multiple keywords over time. I’m tremendously grateful for the opportunities I’ve had to build and expand my website through my membership in Wealthy Affiliate. Thanks for visiting my site!


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