Every entrepreneur probably starts out dreaming of passive income. When you have only 24 hours in a day, passive income is an appealing option for an easy way to leverage your time for making money. Who wouldn’t go for that?
Passive income has been a strategic goal for decades. But in the past it was mostly reserved for multi-level marketers, stock traders, drop-shippers, and other work-from-home activities.
It’s still possible to generate passive income through the aforementioned approaches, but the Internet has been an obvious game changer. Anyone with access to a computer has an opportunity to generate passive income through some sort of online business.
Starting with the web, the following technology has made passive income attainable for almost anyone:
1. Payment processing software
There’s no way to perform manual processing of payments on autopilot. As long as you have to swipe a credit card, cash a check, or deposit cash by hand, obtaining steady income will require some effort.
Effort means you aren’t getting passive income. But payment processing software, such as PayPal and Stripe, provides a suitable level of automation that makes passive income possible.
When PayPal partnered with MasterCard, merchants could finally generate more online revenue with much less effort. The partnership “led to the inception of PayPal’s new line, Secured Card Service,” SuccessStory.com explains.
“The users could make payments on the websites that did not have PayPal directly but generated a unique MasterCard number on their every checkout. This alone saw the company generating a revenue close to $1.8 billion.”
If passive income is your goal, being able to accept automatic payments will eliminate that part of the challenge. A solid example of an industry this technology assisted in a huge way following the advent of the Internet is real estate.
Property investors are willing to spend big bucks on potential investments because the return can be so high. In the past, however, they’ve had to rely on manual methods to process rent payments.
Thanks to payment processing software, landlords no longer have to knock on doors or wait for checks from tenants that are supposedly lost in the mail. It’s the fastest way to get paid and bypass all the late-rent excuses.
According to Green Residential, collecting rent online doesn’t just benefit the landlord; the tenant benefits, as well. The process ensures a secure transaction for the tenant, and he or she doesn’t have to purchase stamps, walk to a mailbox, or drive to the post office.
2. Automated affiliate marketing programs
Affiliate marketing changed the way serial entrepreneurs may launch a new business. Affiliates sell someone else’s product for a percentage of the sale price just for having marketed it.
There’s no need to buy or ship anything. Since this is an entirely hands-off approach to making money, if you can become proficient at affiliate marketing, you can accumulate substantial passive income.
According to statistics published by AM Navigator, more than 80% of brands utilize affiliate marketing for online sales. In 2015, Amazon.com generated in excess of $100 billion in revenue, and affiliates accounted for about $10 billion of the total.
Given stats like that, affiliate marketing is clearly a promising choice for people who seek to earn passive income. Once a proper sales funnel is set up and you have a good marketing strategy, very little further effort is necessary to maintain it.
Professional web developer Tali Garsiel spent endless hours reading browser source code in order to figure out how to make better decisions in her development work. What she discovered was millions of C++ lines.
The browser you’re using to read this article is likely written in C++, and so are many other applications that help you run your business. Portions of Facebook were developed in C++, as well as YouTube, Amazon, and PayPal.
Even the major database systems such as Oracle, MySQL, and IBM Informix are all developed in C++. Without C++, marketers wouldn’t have a MySQL database to store their customer data in.
Here’s a (nearly) full list of applications programmed in C++. Internet entrepreneurs rely on many of these programs to keep their systems going and thereby generate passive income.
4. E-books . . . Kindle, for instance
Turning physical books into digital books was a smart and probably inevitable move. The Kindle version of a good book may cost less than the paperback copy, but the potential profit is higher.
A piece of software handles the order, payment, and delivery process. There’s no physical product to handle or ship, and no staff to pay.
E-books benefit the author and the buyers. The latter get a copy of the book at a lower price, and authors can sell many more copies at virtually no greater cost.
Kindles, for example, create passive income for both Amazon and the author of all the books that get sold for and on it. It’s pretty much a win-win all around.