Have you been thinking about ways to make money in tech? Maybe you’d love to start a business but don’t know what to launch. Or, you’d rather stay behind the scenes and generate income without getting your hands dirty or being seen.
Whatever your preference, you’ve got options. Here are 8 of the simplest methods for making money in tech.
The more effort and money you put into your investments, the more likely you are to see bigger returns. However, if you’re willing to accept a lower return, there are plenty of ways to invest in profitable industries without having to do too much work. For example, if you don’t want to invest in real estate properties directly, you can invest in existing apps or find a gap in the market and create your own app to bring more value to the market.
Investing in opportunities like IT startups is also an excellent opportunity to generate big money. Even though startups are risky, it can be rewarding when an investment pays off. If you’re an early investor in a startup that makes it to IPO, you can see returns in the thousands of percent and end up wealthy.
The downside to investing in startups is that around 90% fail to make it to an IPO. It’s almost impossible to know ahead of time what the chances are of any given startup failing. There have been many companies that seemed great but failed, and vice versa.
Startups fail mainly for eight reasons:
- Premature scaling
- No product-market fit
- Marketing issues
- Team conflicts
- Inability to generate substantial revenue
- Running out of money
- Operational issues
- Legal issues
If you’re considering investing in a tech startup, take some time to read about past companies that failed hard. You’ll get a more detailed insight into why startups fail and see some of the red flags to look for before you invest your money. This information will help you do better research. For example, Pixelon’s founder was on Virginia’s most wanted list for skipping bail after being convicted of stock swindling. It’s probably a good idea to research the founders and maybe even run a background check.
There are many other types of tech investments you can pursue, including stocks. Artificial Intelligence (AI) seems to be exploding right now, so that’s likely a good aspect of tech to look into.
Start an ecommerce store
In 2021, the ecommerce market generated $288.8 billion in revenue and $45.7 billion in net revenue. Ecommerce is constantly growing, and if you can find your niche, build a good website, and market your business, you’ll be taking home a share of that pie.
Don’t worry about competing with big retailers. Small ecommerce stores can be highly profitable. You don’t need to be as big as Amazon to run a successful online store. There are millions of small ecommerce stores currently, and many of them are still growing. What you need is a good niche, high-quality products at a low price, a market for your products, and amazing customer service.
If selling physical goods seems like too much work, you can sell digital products, like software or games. The concept is exactly the same.
Sell outsourced services
If you can outsource 100% of your services, you can run virtually any type of tech business you want. This means you can choose a profitable niche, and you don’t need to be an expert. You just need to know how to run a business.
Many people are already doing this with website design, accounting, video marketing, SEO, video production, reseller web hosting, and more.
While web design is probably the most popular option, there’s a lot of competition in the market. You’d have to create something really special to stand out in the market. However, accounting has far less competition and is just as easy to outsource. For example, you can hire a third-party company to prepare tax returns for your clients. This is a basic service, but it’s absolutely necessary, so it will always be in demand. Even tax preparers use third parties to process their clients’ returns to save time.
Try affiliate marketing
Top affiliate marketers make bank, and you can, too. You just have to find the right opportunity and put in the time, energy, and effort. You also need to learn the ins and outs of affiliate marketing, which you can learn online. There are countless guides and resources out there, including videos, that will walk you through the entire process.
The easiest way to earn money through affiliate marketing is to sell products and services you can be interested in because that’s how you’ll write convincing copy. Otherwise, be prepared to hire out all your sales copy needs.
Some of the most profitable affiliate niches include:
- Wellness and fitness
- Financial products, like debt settlement
No matter what niche you choose, go for high-commission items so you don’t end up working really hard to earn pennies.
Choose products or services you can replace if they get discontinued, you lose your account, or something changes that makes it not worth promoting. Never build an affiliate business around a specific product because it may not last long.
You can find affiliate marketing opportunities by searching Google for your target product or niche plus the word “affiliate,” ask companies you’re familiar with if they have an affiliate program, or use sites like Commission Junction, ClickBank, FlexOffers, Amazon Associates, and other similar sites. Even Shopify has its own affiliate marketing program.
Open an electric vehicle (EV) charging station
You’ve seen them in the news and maybe even at the grocery store – EV charging stations are starting to be installed at various places, even in small cities. The market is small but expected to grow significantly now that laws are being passed to mandate electric vehicle use.
The market exists, but it might take a while to become standard. There is a push for most of the United States to have only electric vehicles by 2030, and Ford is getting a head start by spending billions of dollars on new EV models. Ford is replacing the Edge, Escape, and Transit Connect with all-electric models.
However, if you start now and build your first charging station, you’ll be ahead of the game when electric vehicles are either dominant or required.
Partner with developers
If you aren’t a programmer but have some amazing ideas for software or mobile apps that can make a difference in a particular industry, consider contacting developers for partnership opportunities.
Remember that not all ideas are worth pursuing, so you might face a lot of rejection. It’s worth pursuing if you have great ideas that can genuinely fill some unmet needs in a hungry market.
Start a podcast
It seems like everyone has a podcast today, and there’s always room for more. Millions of people enjoy listening to podcasts on a regular basis, usually through providers like iTunes or Spotify.
Podcasting is ideal if you have something important or useful you’d like to share with the world, either by yourself or by interviewing various guests. The best podcasts share controversial, unusual, or strong views on various subjects.
You can post videos to YouTube and repurpose them on Spotify, or vice versa. You can also host a live show if you prefer, and take calls from your audience. There are radio show hosting services that make this possible and all you have to do is install an app on your computer or phone.
If you start a podcast, be prepared to pay all required licensing fees for any media you broadcast. Licensing media for podcasts is a bit complicated, so be sure to consult with an attorney before doing anything. You don’t want to make a mistake and get in trouble with rights management companies like BMI.
Also, when you produce your final audio files, ensure you nail the sound quality because nobody will listen to your podcast if the audio is poor.
Start a 3D printing business
The demand for three-dimensional, custom products is rising. In 2021, the market was valued at around $16 million and is expected to grow by 24% each year. Because of the cost, most people don’t have a 3D printer in their home but would love to have a custom-made product. There’s good money to be made by printing your own designs or printing custom designs submitted by your customers.
You can make money producing parts, novelty items, artistic items, models, prototypes, and more.
Although it’s a profitable niche, there are a few points of caution. If you’re going to make things that are regulated, like medical products, ensure you align with all applicable state, local, and federal laws. You also can’t print designs if they would infringe on someone’s intellectual property rights.
What tech business will you start?
This list just covers a handful of money-making opportunities in tech. The possibilities are endless, so if you don’t like what you see here, keep looking or invent your own idea.
Featured Image Credit: Provided by the Author; Thank you!
Frank is a freelance journalist who has worked in various editorial capacities for over 10 years. He covers trends in technology as they relate to business.