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Someone asked me,  “What is the next big thing for passive income?”

The word “passive” is very relative. If you want to make income without doing any work, you won’t find a solution here. You can outsource a lot of the work, but of course, you’ll have to pay for that.

Usually, you get passive income by doing a lot of work up front. Passive income is not doing 1-on-1 coaching in which you get paid by the session or package. That’s not to say you can’t make a lot of money doing 1-on-1 coaching, but it isn’t passive income.

Partially passive income would be creating an electronic product and selling it. You still have to promote for each sale but the delivery is automatic.

Let’s talk about some ways to make income that’s even more passive, because everyone wants passive income!

1. Automate your business

The CEO of a big business doesn’t work on the assembly line. In the same way, you don’t have to do everything in your business. It’s possible to automate and outsource some types of businesses so that you don’t have to do very much.

Of course, it takes time — often a lot of time — to get to that point.Your business has to be successful and reducible to a set of procedures before you can outsource all or most of it.

2. Display ads on your website

The closest thing to truly passive income is ad income. On, I get a lot of traffic (200,000 – 300,000 per month) and I display some ads. The advertisers pay me on a recurring charge to their credit card or by crediting my checking account — all automatically. I make over $500/month that way.

But of course, it took me years to develop the traffic to that site. It’s only passive now.

Ads are not a good fit for everyone. They look commercial and if you don’t want your website to look that way, maybe you shouldn’t try ads. I would never put ads on my home page. But they help monetize my blog.

3. Create a membership product

Of course, you can create your own membership product. However, you need to continually provide content for your members, so it isn’t really passive. I work hard to create original, useful content for the members of Reach the Stars Club. Here is some content you can create:

  • Reports and worksheets
  • Webinars and videos
  • Group coaching sessions


You can also offer open office hours (not passive) and a Facebook group or other community.

You can buy pre-written (Private Rights Label) content, but would need to customize it.

4. Promote membership products as an affiliate

If you don’t have your own membership product, one way to get passive income is to promote other’s memberships, such as a mastermind group or other membership product. Remember, memberships have a monthly cost, so when you promote them, you promote once and get monthly income as long as your referrals keep their membership.

I love recurring income! I wrote about this in my blog post, “The joys of recurring income from commission payments.”

Of course, you need to find membership products, but lots of people have them. My low-cost membership product is called Reach the Stars Club. Several members were referred by other entrepreneurs, so those entrepreneurs get a commission each month, without doing any further work.

You can learn how to promote products as an affiliate with my report, “30 Days to Profits as an Affiliate Marketer Even If You Don’t Have a List or Website.”

If you’d like to promote my products, you can join my affiliate program here.


Do you want passive income? If so, what are you doing to get it? Leave a comment! And please share this post with others using the Share buttons below because they might want passive income, too!

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    5 replies to "How can I make passive income?"

    • Hardy

      Wow! These are great suggestions. Thank you!

    • John Pimentel

      I am now in the process of creating a membership product. Hopefully it turns out well. Thank you for the other suggestions. Thinking of doing affiliates as well.

    • Jennifer Juan

      I am interested to join your affiliate program Ellen!

    • Richard Greene

      I just started blogging July last year. I bought a domain and used How do I start putting ads on my website? Do I wait for ad managers to come to me or do I go to them? Please advise.

    • Ellen Finkelstein

      Richard, good question! I would start by using Google Adwords and also check out Bing’s offering. These give you full control over the keywords you want to attract ads for. You’ll get paid based on clicks.
      Ad managers won’t come to you unless you have high traffic to your site. But if you want to attract advertisers, be sure to have an Advertising page that gives your rates. You can see mine for at
      Finally, search out ad networks in your niche. On my AutoCAD Tips Blog, I have ads from an ad network that specializes in ads related to CAD. They find the advertisers and give me the code to put on my website. I make about $300/month from these ads, based on the number of clicks.
      Good luck!

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