This is a blog post for people who want to start their internet business while still having a day job. More and more, people are looking for ways to make more money, apart from their 9 to 5 grind. However, it is hard to imagine what else we can do after the daily toil in the office.
A second job can bring in extra cash no doubt, but can you afford the time and energy? Long term wise, it’s just not very feasible. I know because I used to hold 2 jobs for years – the day job which I am stuck between 9 to 6 and the evening tuition classes I provide to students. Talk about working like a horse, that’s how I felt back then…sore and exhausted from each day and weekends were no better as they are filled with more tuition sessions.
I was motivated to find a solution. I have 24 hours just like anyone else and I was looking for a way to convert some of those non-office hours into a passive income. Finally, I decided on affiliate marketing and created my niche site (this site!) for helping others who like me, wanted to earn an extra income to supplement their day jobs.
In this blog post, I share how I make full use of my mornings and evenings to create a passive income and I believe you can do it too.
The First Question: Did It Work?
I did it myself and started my niche site in Sep 2017. And yes, it did worked out. So here’s what happened.
After investing a couple of months into building my niche site researching and writing useful blog posts utilising that few hours before and after work, I received my first recurring commission of USD 23.50 for my efforts.
This is a recurring monthly income as long as my referral stays on the program. Till date, I have earned USD 116.26. Yes, it’s not a whole lot of money but it is passive income and I’m not doing anything extra. The potential for this income to grow is high as my site is getting ranked higher in the search results over time as Google, Yahoo and Bing increasingly trust I’m not in here for a quick hit and run but this is indeed a serious authority site I’m building to share my experience and in the process, help other people with similar goals.
WHY You Want to Make More Money?
I want to spend some time talking about this because it’s really hard to commit your non-office hours into building a passive income IF you are not passionate about your WHY.
Everyone has a different WHY.
For me, I wanted to get out of the daily commuting, be in control of my financial security and have more time for my family.
For your reference, I do have a day job as a recruiter. Prior to Nov 2017, I used to work for agencies, but I have since then started out on my own and is heading my own search practice.
Compared to working for others, I am in a better position as I can choose to work from anywhere in the world as long as there is WiFi and mobile communication. In addition, I also do not have to worry about layoffs and company restructuring that can suddenly put people out of work.
But then, the problem is…I am still exchanging my time for money and there is no guarantee I can wake up fit and ready to work every day and I believe everyone shares the same concern.
Yes, it is to create and build your passive income whilst you can.
The goal is to build that passive income to comfortably replace your active income. When that happens, you will be able to take a slower pace for your day job or even quit it.
Everyone has a different WHY. So, find yours’ before you start building.
What is the Best Way to Make Money?
There is no “one size fits all” best way for everyone. It depends on your passion and you can read my other blog post where I discuss several money-making options.
Among the options, I considered affiliate marketing to be the most ideal option for anyone who wants to get started with an online business and build something from scratch.
First of all, you don’t have a whole chunk of time left after your day job, studies or whatever that keeps you occupied during the day. Thus, I will just assume you have that few hours before and after work to work on this side hustle.
A few hours a day? Yes, that is all you need.
When I started, I spent an average of 3 hours per day (1 in the morning and 2 after work) to work on my niche site. Weekends, I invested more time.
In 3 months, I published 100 blog posts which was a milestone but there is also a learning point from it, as the results did not commensurate with the efforts. It was all part and parcel of growth but I also realised it’s better to invest in proper learning before building. You can save a lot of time and be that much more productive!
In my opinion, creating a passive income niche site is the BEST way forward in terms of affordability, time commitment and results.
Here are my STATS and while these are not the most impressive numbers, I am confident that if you take action being focused and avoiding other shiny objects along the way, you will go further, faster and achieve more.
Sep 2017 – $0
Oct 2017 – $0.01 → Yea, I thought it was a mistake, but someone did dropped me some spare change. Lol
Nov 2017 – $3 → My first Amazon affiliate sale! I was pumped up and believed I can quit my job in the following month
Dec 2017 – $0 → Quiet month and I decided to postpone my resignation
Jan 2018 – $0 → I decided that I should keep my job. 🙁
Feb 2018 – $3.60
Mar 2018 – $3.60
Apr 2018 – $7.20
May 2018 – $49
Jun 2018 – $23.50
Jul 2018 – $26.35
Grand Total: USD 116.26
This is a very humble beginning but I am confident given time and the right effort, results will continue to cascade. On top of that, I am constantly learning from other successful internet marketers how to do it better and I’m putting in place something new. I will share what I did and the results after a month or two.
So I earned USD 116.26 but how about the costs?
Here’s the breakdown. I have a membership fee of $299 for Wealthy Affiliate paid annually. On top of that, I bought a premium theme (Smart Passive Income Pro Theme) for a one-time $99 from StudioPress which is now merged with WP Engine, the best web hosting provider if your site is getting massive traffic beyond 15,000 pageviews per month. I am not at that level and thus I am not using their service yet.
In conclusion, my total investment so far is $398 (around USD 1.1 per day for the first year) and every subsequent year, I would only pay $299 for Wealthy Affiliate which is the best membership site for aspiring affiliate marketers. In fact, everything I built thus far, I credit the training received from Wealthy Affiliate. If you like, you can click here to find out more for yourself.
Yes, I’m still in the red, so as to speak but given the mounting momentum, I expect to break even in the months to come and will eventually turn in a small profit in the 2nd to 3rd year.
Mornings and Evenings are Assets
Time is always a precious commodity and if you feel a lack of time to commit, I can relate.
I have a baby who just turns 10 months and as a work from home dad, my time revolves around her basic needs from feeding, bathing, diaper change to playtime. In between, I have to run my search practice and build an online passive income business.
It’s not easy being a Latte Papa!
But I’m not complaining. To build a business which can provide me and my family a greater sense of financial security towards the future is a strong motivation and I intend to achieve it for myself and help others along the way.
The beauty of creating a niche site is that you can work on it at any time according to your lifestyle. Mornings and evenings are great and so is your lunch break if you can squeeze out the time.
With a laptop and internet, you turn your research and experience into useful information for others who are looking for those answers. Thus, you are not restricted by a 9 to 5 regime. Simply work when you can BUT make sure you put in the consistent hours.
It’s a bit challenging to expect strong results if you are just publishing 5 blog posts per year…You get the idea.
Tip: Don’t worry about monetising immediately. In fact, you shouldn’t if you want to achieve results faster.
The first and only thing is to publish useful quality content for topics people are interested in and within your niche. In addition, it’s never too good to cover too broad a niche right at the beginning.
For example, you may think that a niche like health and fitness or recipes can provide you a lot of blogging ideas. Indeed, they do but the competition is crazy and your blog posts will be trampled forever by those mega sites which have been around for years and manned by a team of writers. No way can you compete against them.
Turn your mornings and evenings into money-generating assets and make sure to plough in consistent effort daily to build quality blog posts. In time, you will see results.
This leads to the next and final point.
Compounding Effect of Time for Your Efforts
When I first tried building my niche site, I was contemplating many options and it wasn’t a good 6 months later that I actually got my website up and running even though this setup takes less than 5 minutes.
What was I doing with that 6 months?!
Yes, that’s my mistake and I share it openly because that 6 months will never come back and I don’t want you to go through it.
Especially for building a passive income niche site, one of the things you really have to deal with is the drought of traffic in the first few months and even after that, traffic trickled in.
The fantasy of traffic pouring in is well…a fantasy.
I know many “gurus” shared about viral hacking blog posts to get the traffic to smash through the roof but none of the credible sources on the internet went along with that.
There is no question that successful internet marketers like Pat Flynn (Smart Passive Income), Jim and Ricky (Income School), Kyle and Carson (Wealthy Affiliate) are experienced and knowledgable to create amazing content that ranks extremely well, but it just wasn’t an overnight transformation for these guys nor for the majority of us.
So, I may as well knock that into our heads and get into the proper mindset that there is no quick money in the beginning.
However, when viewed from a mid to long term perspective, getting the groundwork done right (even when nothing seems to happen at all) will reap a harvest later that is richly rewarding.
Patience is key and it is just a shame if you turned back just three feet from gold.
From my own site, I observed traffic (300-400 pageviews) creeping in from the third month which aligns with what most bloggers go through.
In a nutshell, don’t expect to earn money in the first 6-12 months. You may pick up a few sales (if lucky), but it won’t be anything earth-shattering nor will it replace your income. On top of that, the lucky sales are not what you are building this niche site for.
What you want is to build quality content that brings in massive traffic which you can serve and all this takes time.
No matter how FANTASTIC your content is from day one, Google will take time to verify you are a trustable source of quality content that people are interested in. In fact, Google is the best in SEARCH and their business is to deliver top quality useful content to their users (everyone!) Thus, they won’t go easy on you and will take the time to verify your site.
That is why reputable sites rank faster because they have already passed through Google’s rite of passage.
It is important to produce quality content and to give it ample time to rank up. The results are slow in the beginning but once the traction gets going, you will be able to sit back and enjoy the fruits of your labour. One way to start is to utilise your mornings and evenings. You will be surprised how far you can go with just 1-2 hours a day if you do it consistently for a few months.
Instead of waiting for the perfect opportunity (READ: ample time away from the hustle and bustle…believe me, this may never come!), start investing your time (mornings, evenings or other timings that suit you) to build a passive income niche site.
So, here’s my recommendation. Spend this weekend thinking about what you like to start as your niche and do a bit of research into its potential. Is it a niche that you are personally passionate about too? Ideally, we share best when we talk about stuff that rock our boat, isn’t it?
If you need an idea on how to begin, check out my site for other free resources or click the First Time Here? to explore how you can take the first step towards creating your passive income niche site.