How to Make Money Online - Entrepreneur

How to Make Money Online - Entrepreneur

How to Make Money Online - Entrepreneur

Posted: 20 Feb 2021 12:00 AM PST

Determine your strong skills and sell them. You can do just about anything online.

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6 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

These days, online jobs and education opportunities are quite popular. People love to work from home, and the internet is exploding with -making opportunities. How can you fit into this new popular niche? Let's explore!

Working online does not impose the same time restrictions as working in an office or brick-and-mortar store. You don't have to adhere to strict dress codes or company policies. Often, you don't even have to interact face-to-face with clients, customers or co-workers. This can be especially nice for independent spirits or introverts.

Not having to go to an office affords people a lot of freedom and autonomy. Imagine working in your pajamas! If you need to take off to get your kids for an activity, you can do that without having to call your boss and arrange to leave the office. Your attendance is up to you as you set your own hours. Often, you can leave the computer for a spell to get things done and then return to work when you are ready.

Related: 5 Ways to Stand Out from the Competition on Major Freelancing Sites

You can also be your own boss. Expand your business as you see fit. No one can restrict your decisions or tell you what to do with your work. This does not apply if you work online for a company, but it does apply if you are a freelancer or have your own online business.

The internet is a great way to reach lots of people on an international scale. You can use it to advertise or offer your services to a variety of clients all over the world. Marketing through social media enables you to reach lots of people with minimal effort.

What can you do online?

Anything, really. But having a clear goal and solid service or product is key. You must be able to offer your future employers something. Determine your strong skills and advertise those.


Try freelancing sites like Upwork or Guru. You can charge an hourly rate or charge by the project.

  • . Being able to write is a great way to make money online. Written is important for businesses. You can find jobs writing for blogs, gossip sites, online journals and , just to name a few.
  • . Documents often contain errors. As an editor, you comb through documents and improve them. You can find editing jobs online in a huge variety of languages.
  • Web design. Use your skills for creating websites and your aesthetic sense to create websites for people.
  • Illustration and logo design. Are you an artist? Then you can work online creating art for businesses or other people.
  • Translating. If you are bilingual, offer your services as a translator. Use your skills to change the native language of documents. Translation services are in demand throughout the world.
  • Transcribing. After listening to audio or watching videos, you put the words down on paper (or in an electronic document). Transcribing is that requires attention to detail and concentration. But if you are good at a language, you can find transcription jobs online.
  • Code writing. If you can write code, you have limitless job opportunities online. You can create websites and computer programs for various companies eager to hire new coders.

Related: 10 Business Ideas to Make Easy Money and Change the World


  • Tutoring. and college students are taking to the internet looking for cheap tutoring services. Offer your expertise in any subject and teach over video or through written lessons. Try  and the Knowledge Roundtable for tutoring jobs.
  • Teaching. There are sites like VIPKid where you can teach languages online over video chat or written lessons. English is probably in the most demand, but you can find opportunities for any language. Offer your language teaching services to any site that teaches the language you are most fluent in.
  • Academic writing. On sites like Ultius, you can find opportunities to write academic papers. Typically, you need a bachelor's degree to get these jobs. Writing experience is also helpful.
  • Lifestyle coaching. Help people become their best selves. Self-improvement is a popular niche. Writing books and offering self-improvement videos for a small monthly fee is a great way to make money. Promise to help people transform their lives or bodies and you'll get customers.
  • Educational videos. Making educational videos and selling courses on sites like Lynda or allows you to make money with the knowledge and skills you have. Popular niches on these sites include coding, crafting and entrepreneurial tips and skills.


  • Travel blogging. Travel blogging is a popular niche for those who like to be on the move. If you have traveled a lot, you can share your experiences and advice that you have picked up along the way with massive audiences. You can get all sorts of sponsorship and generate revenue as you capture readers.
  • Recipe writing. Sharing your expertise in the kitchen can help you make money online. Make videos and write recipes to publish on popular recipe sites. Or find people on freelancing sites seeking recipe and cookbook writers.

Online retail

  • Dropshipping. You can create your own dropshipping business and sell products online. Use and for these, as well as wholesale sites and social media like .
  • Selling products. If you make any sort of product, you can sell it online. Consider using Shopify or for handmade or vintage products. Consider Amazon and eBay for other types of products, like books or inventions or wholesale items. You can also create your own e-shop but you must market it. Learn about SEO so that your shows up high in searches.

Related: What Is the Real Future of Work?

Remote jobs

  • Online companies. Many companies are hiring remote workers. You can do things like medical coding and billing, customer service, coding, software engineering,  and many other jobs from home. Some companies are even hiring doctors or psychologists to provide services over the internet instead of in a traditional office setting. As people become more comfortable with working online, the workplace is adjusting. Companies have found that remote workers are actually more productive and they can cut costs by not having a building.

Penny hoarder

Maybe you don't want to start your own business or teach or freelance online, but you want a little extra spending money on top of your current income. The internet offers a wide variety of ways to make money without really working. You can find great tips on The Penny Hoarder website.

The Penny Hoarder shares opportunities with you such as apps that pay you to download them. They also offer surveys that pay you to fill out the information. There are lists of other things, such as banks that pay you to open an account. Check this site out for lots of tips on how to make a little extra cash online.

3 Tips for Buying an Online Business - Entrepreneur

Posted: 15 Oct 2020 12:00 AM PDT

5 min read

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

As you start to get involved in remote work, the idea of having your own online business will eventually come into play. Should you consider buying an online business or building one from the ground-up? Both of these can be rather lucrative if you know what you are doing. Buying an established business can pay off a lot more in the long run than starting one from scratch. If you are curious about why buying is better than building an online business, here are some tips and information for you to explore. 

Buying vs. building

As we explore the overview of the online business landscape, we find people who are very good at buying online businesses and those who are very efficient at creating businesses. If you build online businesses, you might either be interested in selling it down the road or sticking with it for the long run until it turns around profit. 

Having a lot of capital to invest in a business is the top reason why buying is better than building an online business. As stated by Greg Elfrink of Empire Flippers: "Buying a business doesn't just let you skip the timeline, but it also lets you come into the game already having hard data on what is working and what isn't." If you want to go straight to making money, buying a business is the better way to go. 

Many people make a living out of creating online businesses, getting it up to a certain level of income, and then selling them. These sorts of people usually have years of background experience with marketing and SEO. If you are new to online business, it would be difficult to match their usual timeframe for monetization. 

Where to get started?

Getting started with buying an online business is pretty simple and straightforward. Thankfully, there are already many different platforms, marketplaces, and brokers that make it easier for you to shop around the different options that exist. Out of the many different places to start, here are some of the best options: 

Tip 1: Pick a monetization type

When buying an online business, picking a niche of personal interest is usually the way to go, But sometimes it makes a lot more sense to start off with how the business is monetized. There are different skills required for just about every type of business. You need to match your experience with a business that will be the best fit. Ideally, you can align the monetization method and niche to create a perfect fit, but it's not always easy. 

Remember that you will need to work in your online business for a little while. For this reason, it can be helpful to pick a niche that is both profitable and practical for your knowledge and skillset. If you are new to the online business space, make sure to maintain an open mind, since the most boring niches are the least competitive and can often make the most money. 

Related: 7 Online Business Ideas That Can Make You Rich

Tip 2: Check for consistent income

You must check for consistent and reliable sources of income before buying a business. "You might overestimate your own skills or underestimate what is required to really manage the business you're buying," Elfrink says. "This can lead to not only frustration but actually losing all that capital you've invested in the business, along with the actual business profit starting to decline."

One of the most important aspects before buying any business is to dig diligently into the financial details of the business to make sure you have a full understanding of the profit and loss. Without this information, and proof that it is consistent income, you will be much more likely to buy a business that turns into a dud. Once you have the income, it is also normal to make an offer that is near 30x the monthly profit to acquire the business. 

Related: How to Start a Business Online

Tip 3: Know the operating processes and level of traffic 

Before you get into an online business, you should know exactly how you are going to run it. Speak with the owner directly about what they do each month to run the business. This way, you will know right away what you will be taking on. 

At the same time, you should inquire about how much traffic the business receives, where it gets this traffic, how the business is marketed, and so on. This will help you know how to continue running the business when it becomes yours. 

Related: 3 Things Online Businesses Must Consider to Grow and Thrive

Patience will always be necessary

When we view the overview of the online business landscape, one of the reasons why buying is better than building an online business is because it could save you years of time and money. 

However, please keep in mind that patience will be a virtue when you buy an online business. You may not immediately increase your income to the point you want or learn the ropes of the business quickly. Stick with it, be humble, and learn things every day, so that you can achieve the level of success that you want. 

50 Best Online Business Ideas - Small Business Trends

Posted: 08 Nov 2016 12:00 AM PST

These days, one of the main tools you need when starting an online business is an internet connection. There are so many different opportunities out there to start small businesses online. And in some cases, you don't even need much more than that connection in order to get your online business idea going.

Best Online Business

Starting an online business continues to be popular. And the number of new businesses continues to grow at double-digit rates. According to eMarketer, there was a 24.8% increase in 2017 over the previous year. The global worldwide sales reached $2.304 trillion, with mobile accounting for 58.9% of those sales.

As online business continues to take a bigger chunk of the traditional retail market around the world, this is a good time to get your online business ideas up and running.

This is because 47.3% of the world population is expected to buy online in 2018. And as more people use eCommerce, customers will be looking for new and innovative online business ideas to make the experience even better.

The technology and price point will achieve parity in which there will be little differentiation between online business ideas. However, customer experience will play an important role in a successful online business.

Online businesses where customer experience becomes the priority will see more people clicking on their eCommerce stores.

This includes providing customer reviews, social media engagement, a site optimized for mobile, mobile apps, chatbots and more.

The goal is to implement the latest online business ideas so your successful online business continues to grow.

List of Online Business Ideas

Check out our list of online business ideas you can start right away.


50 Online Business Ideas - Blogger

Blogging is a viable small business opportunity that allows you to choose a niche that really suits you. And you can make money through advertising, affiliate links, infoproducts or any number of other avenues.

Virtual Assistant

Businesses and professionals can often use the help of an assistant to manage tasks like email and social media. And you can offer your services to those people online as a virtual assistant.

Social Media Manager

Another online business opportunity awaits those skilled at using Facebook, Twitter and similar sites. If you're social media savvy, you can offer your services to brands that want help managing their social media accounts on a daily basis.

Social Media Consultant

Alternatively, you can simply offer your social media expertise to people as an online business instead of actually managing the accounts for them.

Social Media Influencer

Or you can instead focus on growing your own social media accounts. And if you garner enough influence within your network, you can build a business as an influencer that works with brands to promote products and services on your account.

eBook Author

50 Online Business Ideas - eBook Author

If you have a book idea in mind, you can write your own ebook and get it published on online platforms like Amazon.

Online Course Creator

You can also share your knowledge with people online by creating your own courses and selling them on your website or email list.

Online Business Coach

If you have a fair amount of online business expertise, you can offer consulting or coaching services to clients and communicate with them via email or video chat apps like Skype.

SEO Consultant

You can also offer a more specialized type of online business service like SEO for small businesses that want to improve the chances of their websites showing up in search results.

Affiliate Marketer

Affiliate programs give you the opportunity to earn money online by posting links to various products and services and then earning a share of each sale that you refer.

YouTube Personality

50 Online Business Ideas - YouTube Personality

For those entrepreneurs who are comfortable in front of the camera, you can start your own YouTube channel as an online business and earn revenue through ad shares.


You can also start your own podcast as an online business and sell advertisements or sponsorships to build a business around your content.

eBay Seller

If you want to sell actual products, you can really easily set up an online store on platforms like eBay and sell a variety of different products.

Handmade Business Owner

Or you could opt to make your own products and start an online business by setting up your own handmade ecommerce store or set up a shop on a platform like Etsy.

Web Designer

If you have some design savvy and knowledge about websites, you can offer your services to clients as a web designer.

Website Developer

50 Online Business Ideas - Website Developer

You can also build a business by helping out on the back end of the website building process. This requires a bit more technical knowledge but not as much design savvy.

Graphic Designer

Or you can offer some less technical design services but still communicate with and attract clients online as a graphic designer.

App Developer

If you have a lot of technical knowledge about mobile apps, you can build a business as an app developer for clients or you can even build your own app to sell.

Domain Reseller

Everyone who wants to start their own website first needs a domain. That means they need to buy that domain from somewhere. So you can build a business by purchasing domains and selling them.

Freelance Writer

For those who want to start a writing business without starting your own blog, you can offer your writing services to outside clients as a freelancer.

T-shirt Designer

50 Online Business Ideas - T-Shirt Designer

Online platforms like Redbubble and CafePress make it incredibly easy for entrepreneurs to add designs to t-shirts and similar products and then sell them to online customers.

Remote Tutor

You don't have to meet with people in person in order to be an effective tutor. You can set up online meetings with clients to help them with a variety of different subjects.

Online Advertising Specialist

If you've got some knowledge about online advertising options, you can offer your services to small businesses that want to use online ads to promote their offerings.

Travel Consultant

Travel agents aren't as popular as they once were. But you can still build a small business as an online travel consultant to help customers and groups find the best possible deals on travel options.


You can build a business as a proofreader or editor for various businesses, authors and other clients who want to send you their work online.

Stock Photographer

50 Online Business Ideas - Stock Photographer

If you want to build a photography business that's mainly online, you can take photos and then sell them on stock photo websites.

Website Copywriter

Another potential writing business opportunity, copywriters help businesses create the copy for their websites.

Virtual Tech Support

If you have a fair amount of tech knowledge, you can set up a service that provides remote tech support to clients who contact you online.

Contract Customer Service

You can also offer services to businesses that want to outsource their customer service communications.

Software Developer

For those who are familiar with the ins and outs of creating software, you can offer your services on a freelance basis to businesses, or even create your own software programs to sell.

Marketing Consultant

If you're an experienced marketer, you can also offer services to businesses that want help creating and carrying out their online marketing plans.

WordPress Theme Developer

WordPress is a popular platform for blogs and websites. So you can build a business by creating pre-made themes for people who want an easy way to put together their own websites on WordPress.


There are plenty of opportunities out there for researchers to offer services to writers, businesses and other clients online.

Membership Site Operator

If you have an idea for a niche website, you can offer paid memberships for people who are interested in being a part of the community or accessing any other benefits offered by your site.

Blog Network Creator

You can also set up a network that's specific to bloggers and have members pay a fee or earn money through ads or infoproducts.

Advertising Network Creator

Alternatively, you can set up a network aimed at bloggers, site owners and other online businesses that want to find sponsors or advertisers and vice versa.

Online Public Relations

Public relations is certainly a viable business opportunity. And you can build a business that mainly communicates with clients and publications online.

Website Maintenance Service

For those who want to work with businesses that already have websites, but could use some help maintaining or managing them, you can offer your services as a website manager or maintenance provider.

Website Critique Service

You can also specialize in critiquing websites for businesses that feel like they might need to make some changes or improvements to their online visitor experience.

Online Recruiting

For those who want to help business clients find the best team members, you can start a recruiting service that finds and contacts candidates mainly online.

Resume Writing Service

You can also work with clients that are looking for jobs by starting a service that helps them put together resumes and cover letters.

Life Coach

If you want to help clients with a variety of different issues, you can start a business as a life coach and communicate with clients mainly online.

Meal Plan Service

Or if you want to get more specific and help clients plan out their meals and nutrition, you can offer a meal planning service where you consult with clients online and then send them a plan based on your consultation.

Custom Illustrator

If you're a skilled artist, you can offer custom illustration services to clients who reach out to you via your website or other online channels.

Video Ad Creator

You can also specialize in working with clients that need help creating video ads to appear on YouTube or other online platforms.

Direct Sales Marketer

For those who are skilled with sales, you can build a business by offering your services to business clients and then reaching out to potential customers online.

Financial Consultant

If you've got a fair amount of financial knowledge, you can build a business as a financial consultant and work with clients who reach out to you online.

Bookkeeping Service

Or you could offer bookkeeping services to various businesses and just set up an online communication system to make things easy.

Online Newsletter Service

Setting up an online newsletter is fairly straightforward. And if you build up a sizeable network, you can use your list to sell products, services or earn revenue by working with other businesses.

Lead Generation Service

You can also provide a service to business owners that need help generating leads online.

More Small Online Business Ideas

For similar small online business opportunities see our articles on subscription box ideas and ecommerce business ideas.

Related reading: 51 Great Small Business Ideas

Images: Shutterstock

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The Future of WFH and Competing Against the Giant Internet Platforms - Harvard Business Review

Posted: 24 Feb 2021 06:00 AM PST

February 24, 2021

Youngme, Mihir, Felix, and Rawi discuss whether companies should allow employees to work from home permanently. They also debate whether it's possible for small players to compete against the giant internet platforms.

Each week, the hosts give their recommendations for reading, watching, and more. Here are This Week's Picks:

 You can visit our website at You can email your comments and ideas for future episodes to: You can follow Youngme, Mihir, Rebecca, and Rawi on Twitter at: @YoungmeMoon, @DesaiMihirA, @RebeccaReCap, and @RawiAbdelal. 

HBR Presents is a network of podcasts curated by HBR editors, bringing you the best business ideas from the leading minds in management. The views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Harvard Business Review or its affiliates.

Examples of Online Business Ideas - Entrepreneur

Posted: 24 Jul 2019 12:00 AM PDT

8 min read

You're reading Entrepreneur South Africa, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.

Advancements in technology have enabled entrepreneurs to create businesses that are wholly operated in a digital environment, resulting in decreased overheads and the freedom to run a business on the move. Before you launch your business learn a few strategies from these examples of online businesses:

1. Online Store For E-Commerce And Drop Shipping

Do you like the idea of selling products online? You can open an online store to sell your own products, or you can re-sell products you bought through another online store.

Before you launch your online business, you'll first need to see what your competitors are doing, here is an example of an online business:

Business Name:


Established Date: 2011

About the business: is one of the leading ecommerce retailers in South Africa, and one of the largest, most innovative ecommerce retailers in Africa. Their aim is to be the most customer-centric online shopping destination. 

Innovative business offering also purchased Mr Delivery allowing them to own their logistics network and launched Mr D Food, their app-based on-demand food delivery service.

2. Building Apps

There continues to be a growing demand for new and creative apps. Taking the time to develop and sell smartphone apps can be a lucrative business idea. Before you launch your company, here is an example of an online business you can learn from:

Business Name: Codehesion


About the business:

Codehesion offers web development services where they build world class cloud-based applications. They also offer mobile development for clients wanting to build iOS and Android applications.

Related: Start Your Online Business for (Almost) Free

Innovative business offering

Their agile development approach ensures they can create software quickly and frequently reassess and adapt the design to ensure they swiftly start adding value to their client's businesses.

3. A Digital Product Or Course

Creating a digital product or course is a way to monetise your experience/ specialised skills. You'll need to compile an eBook or webinar of your courses and earn money passively through them.

Before you get started you can learn a few lessons from this example of an online business:

Business Name: Creative School of Business


About the business:

Creative School of Business offers Red & Yellow, a business school where students of all ages can go to develop the career skills they need to thrive in this digital world.

This business school focuses on equipping their students for the realities and exciting opportunities of the 21st Century, that will arise from the digital explosion and ever-increasing pervasiveness of technology.

Innovative business offering

Besides the online courses and diplomas, they also offer a physical school for students looking to learn full-time on campus.

4. Chatbot Making

Chatbots are designed to simulate conversations with online customers. Using free and user-friendly programmes you can design them yourself. Before you start your own chatbot making business, you first need to know what your competition is doing. Here is an example of an online business you can gather insights from:

Business Name: Intercom


Established Date: 2011

About the business:

Intercom assists businesses with custom chatbots that will qualify leads, help to book more meetings and increase sales and marketing. 

Related: A Free Business Plan Example to Launch Your South African Business

The benefits of their chatbots is that they're developing leads 24/7, they have code-free customisation, they accelerate sales cycles and grow businesses beyond human limits.

Innovative business offering

Intercom provides a range of online products that modern internet businesses can use to accelerate their growth through the customer lifecycle, from acquisition, to engagement and support.

5. Buying And Selling Domain Names

You can buy domain names (website addresses) you think will become popular and sell them after they becomes popular. If you have the right knowledge and skills, you can launch this online business idea. Here is an example of this online business idea you can learn some strategies from:

Business Name: Starfire Holdings


About the business:

Starfire Holdings offer professional and discreet domain name acquisitions services to help their clients secure premium domain names for their businesses. They also assist their clients with advice and expertise with buying or selling a domain name.

Innovative business offering

In addition to the above services, Starfire Holdings also offers a comprehensive service from initial contact through to the closing of escrow.

6. Creating A Profitable Blog

A blog has very specific type of content, which you can monetise and earn income from. If you're a talented writer and have a lot of high-quality content you can post on your blog, this might be the online business idea for you.

Before you get started here are a few insights you can learn from this example of an online business:

Business Name: The Adventure Junkies


About the business:

The Adventure Junkies has six different pages focusing on extreme sports, such as diving, hiking, paddling, scuba diving, snow sports and mountain biking.

Related: 7 Online Business Ideas That Could Make You Rich

Each section contains a Facebook forum and information about gear, clothing, techniques and training.

Innovative business offering

In addition to all of this information they sell tangibles such as clothing and gear through affiliated links, which is where they generate most of their income.

7. Become A Virtual Assistant

Every business needs help with the day-to-day administrative tasks. If you have a talent for this type of work, you can become a virtual assistant. They perform duties, such as paying bills, making travel arrangements, managing expense reimbursements.

Before you launch your business, here is an example of an online business you can learn from:

Business Name: Outsourcery


Established Date: 2005

About the business:

Outsourcery was founded by Richard Walton who after struggling to find a great virtual PA service to manage his busy life, decided to launch his own business. Since its launch, they have rapidly expanded to assist busy entrepreneurs in leading more productive lives.

Innovative business offering

In addition to virtual assistant services, Outsourcery also offer virtual bookkeepers, content writers, webmasters and in-office staff.

8. Website Flipping

Since customers use a business' website to decide whether they want to buy from them or not, a websites appearance and interactivity can determine its success. If you have skills and experience improving and optimising websites, this could be the online business idea for you.

Related: 7 Ingredients of Small Business Success Online

You can purchase an underperforming website, optimise it and sell it for a profit. Before you launch your business, you can learn a thing or two from this example of an online business:

Business Name: WebDevine


Established Date: 2003

About the business:

WebDevine assists their clients in developing a competitive edge through website improvements and optimisation. They will also add in marketing techniques to ensure their customers bring in more traffic and convert them to sales.

Innovative business offering

WebDevine is a one-stop shop for all their clients web design and development needs, including web and email hosting, online advertising, branding, social media management and mobile/web applications.

9. Online Real Estate Investing

Online real estate investing platforms now exist, and they enable anyone to invest a percentage into a property instead of the whole amount. If you have the right skills, you can start your own online business.

Before you launch your business, learn a few strategies from this example of an online business:

Business Name: Real Estate Crowdfunding


About the business:

Real Estate Crowdfunding offers its clients lower fees, the option to invest in a development nearby and transparency, which enables their customers to find out more about projects before investing.

Innovative business offering

Real Estate Crowdfunding has been designed to give their clients a platform to help raise funds for property investment and/or to participate in property investment opportunities.

10. Online Transcription Platform

Online transcription platforms offer money for your ability to transcribe their audio files. If you are a fast typist and can understand multiple accents transcription services could be the online business for you.

Before you launch your business, you'll need some experience, but also some insights from a successful online business:

Business Name: AfroLingo


About the business:

AfroLingo offers audio and video transcription services to their clients along with 24/7 customer service to ensure their clients across the world are always supported.

Innovative business offering

In addition to their transcription services, AfroLingo has more than 10 years of experience translation over 70 languages. They are experienced subject matter experts in every major African and MENA language. 

Additionally, they offer proofreading, website and app localisation services and desktop publishing.

Related: 25 Of The Most Successful Business Ideas In South Africa


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