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17 passive income ideas that really work

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passive inceome ideas that really work

17 passive income ideas that really work

Are you looking for passive income ideas from anywhere? In this post I share realistic passive incomes that you can use to make money in South Africa.

Firstly, passive income is not entirely passive as most people assume, there is some form of investment in a sense that needs to be put upfront. 

You might be required to invest money, time and skills or all of them in order for your income to start making money with your passive income idea. 

Consistent monitoring is often required. you need to know that you might need to continuously improve your ideas so that your income doesn’t dry up. 

So keep in mind that it might take weeks, months or even years for you to start seeing results.

It will all depend on your effort’s, skills, therefore any of the listed ideas are not a get rich quick scheme but realistic.
passive income ideas pin

Here’s a list of passive income ideas in South Africa:

  • Blogging

This one had to be the first on the list due to it’s amount of control you have over it and since it cost less.  Blogging has been one of the popular ways to earn passive income since the early 2000’s.

There are many bloggers who can attest to this passive idea, the list is endless. 

But here’s something that you need to know, it takes time more than money to build a successful blog that can generate an income.

The actual process of starting a blog is easy, you can start a blog in a few minutes. Here’s a step by step guide for starting a blog.

The hard part is getting readers and being able to keep them coming for more. 

For that you need to write quality content so that you can attract new readers, basically you need to build an audience and capture  leads.

There are many ways to monetize a blog, this is where the passive income comes in. 

Once you start getting traffic to your blog that’s when you can start thinking about earning an income from your blog.

You can earn passive income through blogging by doing the following:

  • Promoting affiliate products
  • Running Ads on your blog( Google Adsense the most common Advertising network)
  • Selling products( it can be anything including a service)
  • Creating sponsored posts for other businesses or bloggers like yourself.

You can turn your blog into a full time business in few months if you put in the time. Blogging does’nt even cost a lot, you can start your own blog with $2.95 per month from Bluehost(Best hosting for bloggers)

  • Start a YouTube channel

Passive income ideas YouTube

 Here’s another passive income idea that you shouldn’t overlook. Creating Youtube channels and uploading videos is a great way to earn passive income. 

Similar to blogging it might take some time to create content and get subscribers.

YouTube pays through the Google Adsense program, and is said to be paying around R75 per one thousand views in South Africa. You can find out how much they are paying if you are in a different country.

 The great part about this is that you don’t have to show your face in order to start earning. 

There are faceless videos and they also do well too. You can create any types of videos you like, whether it be reviews, music, comedy, tutorials etc. 

Creativity is important, it plays its part, you just need to improve your skill.

There are few things that you might have to learn for your videos to do well. 

Apart from taking videos and editing, ranking your Youtube videos is one of the most important things. You can also promote your channel on other social networks to build more subscribers.

  • Become an affiliate

Do you know how to build a following online? This is also one of the best passive income ideas you can not afford to miss out on. 

Doing affiliate marketing is a good way to earn passive income, and is actually one of the best ways to make money online. Affiliate marketing works better for people who already have a blog. 

You can choose the best affiliate programs to promote on online.

Being an affiliate means recommending a product or service to your audience and earning  a commission on each sale made through your affiliate link. 

Meaning you have to put in some effort in order for your affiliate links to reach the relevant buyers.

Building an audience is one of the challenging tasks. You can promote your links through your blog, Youtube channel or social networks. 

Apart from these you can also build an email list to help promote your affiliate links.

If you decide to do it through social networks it means you need to build a following which often takes time. Actually all of these strategies take time but are worth doing.

A lot of influencers and bloggers earn good commissions with affiliate products and so can you.

The good thing is that you don’t have to create the product, you just have to focus on the marketing side.

Is also low risk compared to starting your own business since you invest most of your time in building your brand. Another great part is that you can earn recurring income with just one product.

  • Dropshipping

passive income ideas dropshipping
Image by Pashminu Mansukhani from Pixabay

Dropshipping is another online business idea that can be done from anywhere. It takes some time to establish a dropshipping business, you need to invest some time upfront.

How do you make money with dropshipping? These is a business that needs you to create ecommerce store which enables customers to select and buy the items

 With the dropshipping business the supplier takes care of the manufacturing and the shipping.  You don’t have to create or even see the products you are selling.

When a customer buys a product in your ecommerce store, you send the details of the customer to the supplier and they do the shipping to the customer. You then pay the supplier after the customer has paid you, that’s risk free

There are several platforms that can help you create your ecommerce store and they include Shopify and WooCommerce.

  • Write an ebook

Image by Hermann Traub from Pixabay

Writing ebooks can be a lucrative source of income, yet is one of the passive income ideas that require a lot of work upfront. Of course the book needs to be great and well marketed for it to sell.

Instead of writing the book yourself you can hire someone to do the job for you. 

A good place to find good writers and editors is Fiverr. In case you decide to do it yourself, you can use Crello to design the cover of your book.

It can be marketed in different places including your own website, amazon and many other websites. An ebook can sell from $3 to any amount, so your pricing should be based on your target audience.

  • Sell items online

There’s an endless list of places to sell physical items online. The popular ones are the Facebook marketplace, OLX, Gumtree and of course your own website.In this case your website needs to be an e-commerce store, if you need one contact me.

When selling items online you can operate within a specific region so that you don’t exhaust your resources when it comes to delivery. An alternative is to use a delivery service instead of taking the items to the buyer yourself.

These clearly need some marketing skills to attract customers, so you need to improve your marketing skills in order to stand out.

  • Create and sell online-course

People are looking for ways to gain knowledge and improve their lives. Online learning is now a norm especially since the pandemic.

If you have useful knowledge you can create tutorials and sell them as an e-course. Online courses can range from hundreds to thousands.  Of course creating an e-course needs some upfront time investment.

There are great platforms designed to help you create your e-course check out Udemy, Teachable and Podia. These platforms make it easy to package your knowledge and sell it as an e-learning course.

There are few ways to offer your lessons, you can schedule time, teach in groups. Your students can either learn while the course is online or download it after making a payment so they can learn at their own pace.

  • Write a book and collect royalties

passive income ideas ebooks

We spoke about ebooks which are the soft copy version of the book. In this section we are referring to the physical copy version of the book that can be sold at the shelves  at bookstores. 

Hard copy books have been doing well for ages and they still continue to do well to this day.

The business side of it still works, you can write books and sell them to your readers while collecting royalties for every book sold. But do your research about the whole process of publishing a book.

  • Make music and collect royalties

Similar to writing and publishing a book, making music can be a way to earn money in your sleep. You don’t have to be a top music artist to do this, anyone. Your songs can be used on ads, videos and more

  • Sell photos online

If you have a skill of taking good photos then this one’s for you.  Instead of you being a typical photographer that trades their time to earn money, why not sell your photos online to a wider audience.

A lot of website creators and bloggers need photos to add to their content.

 Photography can be a good business and you can sell your photos online and earn passive income. You can sell your photos on multiple platforms including  Etsy, Photostock and other platforms. 

On some of the platforms you can sell your photos in bulk. For every photo you sell you can earn a certain percentage, just find out on the website you are selling on.

  • Create an app

Creating an app can be a great way to earn money though it needs some time investment upfront and probably a bit of money too. 

There are many apps out there, here’s a list of popular apps from the app store. Your app needs to be useful to your target audience, solve a particular problem or be a game for entertainment.

Apps can generate an income in multiple ways, either by running ads, monthly subscription or charging a fee for downloading the premium version of it. 

The app can do well if it is well marketed thus producing the required income.

The downside is that you can invest your time and money on it with no results to show for it in the end. 

Just so you know the competition is high in the app industry and you could still be beaten by your competitors especially if you don’t put in the good amount of research and effort.

  • Rent your room

If you already have an extra room to rent then why not get into the business. This is a business that most people prefer since you build your rooms once and collect monthly payments.

  • Rent your car

As simple as that, there are many people willing to rent a car for their trips or events like weddings. Of course it depends on the type of car you have and one what people are looking for.

Find a way to promote your car for rental to individuals or families. You can charge a fee for each day the car is rented which can earn you money.

  • Invest in a business, become a silent partner

A silent partner is someone who invests in a business that is already run by someone else and earns while the business makes profits. 

Meaning you don’t have to be there all the time to run the business yet you still collect share in the profits. If you have good enough money to invest in a business you believe in then being a silent partner is one way to earn passive income.

  • Network marketing

passive income ideas network marketing

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

A network marketing business is also one of the passive income ideas since you sell products and refer people to join and earn commission for their participation.

The good part is that the product is already made and packaged for you. There are different network marketing companies the world over, including but not limited to:

  • Beauty products
  • Clothing
  • Health products
  • House-hold items
  • Insurance service and more.

 You can choose the one that is suitable for you. It takes time to build a team but it can be a profitable business, so patience is required.

  • Join E-hailing: Uber/Bolt

The biggest e-hailing business in the world is Uber. You need a nice sedan to join the business every week. 

E-hailing has been among passive income ideas since the start of Uber and millions of people have been able to benefit from it.

You are not limited to Uber though, there are other e-hailing businesses coming up in the world. 

Bolt which was previously known as Taxify is one of them here in South Africa. Meaning you can join one in your country, like DIdi for example which is a great alternative in other countries.

  • Invest in the stock market

Investing in the stock market has been there for a long time and I believe you’ve heard about it many times. 

When investing in the stock market it is advisable to go long term rather than short term.

Some stocks are designed to provide you with dividends mostly quarterly. Another way of earning with stocks is through capital gains. 

The value of stocks often increases or decreases, if it increases while you are still holding the stock then you are in the profits. Likewise if it dips while you are holding  then you are at a loss.

Yet if your chosen stocks increase in value and you reinvest your profits you earn more profits. It can be a confusing process choosing the right stocks therefore take time to learn the markets and seek advice if possible.

17 passive income ideas that really work


I hope you found value in this post about passive income ideas and can start implementing some of them. 

Take one idea at the time and start building your passive income business. As you’ve seen while reading through the post. It often takes time to build passive income. you might need to be realistic and patient while building your income.

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  1. Uncoverify
    Uncoverify 21 Sep 2021

    I started my blog Uncoverify on best sports products reviews but I can’t find any low competitve keyword for my niche. Can you provide me one.

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