Top 30 Passive Income Ideas to Build your Wealth

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Passive Income Ideas: Making money in your sleep is the ultimate dream for hands-off investors. Finding the best sources of passive income may allow you to do just that.

What Is Passive Income?

Passive income is money you can earn without too much ongoing effort. After you identify and establish a stream of passive income, you won’t need to tend to it every day—but that doesn’t mean you won’t have to do some work now and then.

Most passive income ideas require an initial investment of time, money or other resources. They also require a degree of monitoring or regular maintenance to keep things on track, but they won’t require you to commit tens of hours a week or make small talk at the water cooler.

How to Get Passive Income

People typically generate passive income in one of three main ways:

  • Investing. When you invest, you use money you already have to make more money.
  • Asset building. This means acquiring an asset that earns money passively over time.
  • Asset sharing. Sharing in this sense means selling or renting out assets that you already own.

Let’s take a look at different passive investing ideas that leverage investing, asset building and asset sharing.

30 passive income ideas to earn money

1. Start a dropshipping store

2. Create a print-on-demand store

3. Sell digital products

4. Teach online courses

5. Become a blogger

6. Sell handmade goods

7. Run an affiliate marketing business

8. Sell stock photos online

9. Become an Instagram influencer

10. Buy a rental property

11. Invest in the stock market

12. Rent out your spare room

13. Rent out your car

14. Lend money to peers

15. Earn while shopping online

16. Buy and sell websites

17. Start a YouTube channel

18. Invest in REITs

19. Stake cryptocurrencies

20. Sell designs online

21. Invest in businesses

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22. Rent out unused space

23. Sell NFTs

24. Create a job board

25. Create no-code apps

26. Write a digital guide

27. Earn royalties through inventions

28. Record audiobooks

29. Invest in vending machines

30. Build and sell spreadsheets

1. Start a dropshipping store

Dropshipping is one of the best passive income ideas to earn money from wherever you are, even if you don’t have a lot of cash flow to begin with. Some dropshippers report making upward of $100,000 per year. Dropshipping is not a get-rich-quick scheme, however, as it takes some upfront investment of time in order to generate income.

The dropshipping business model involves creating an ecommerce store where customers browse and buy products. What’s interesting about dropshipping is that you don’t have to see or physically manage the products you sell. 

With dropshipping, your supplier handles everything from manufacturing to packaging to fulfillment. And since you don’t need to send money to your supplier until your customers pay, this passive income business has limited cash risk.

Another risk you get to avoid is the one that comes with investing in a product that doesn’t have a market. You can use a platform like the DSers to find trending products in different niches to sell in your store.

Depending on the product you choose and your pricing, you can earn solid passive income and learn how to run an ecommerce business.

2. Create a print-on-demand store

If you’re an artist, designer, or entrepreneur, print on demand can be a profitable passive income stream and monetize your creativity. It involves working with suppliers to customize white label products like t-shirts, posters, backpacks, or books and selling them on a per-order basis. 

Similar to dropshipping, you only pay for the product after you sell it. There’s no buying in bulk or inventory needed. Print-on-demand stores are a good passive income stream because:

  • You can create products quickly and put them up for sale in minutes
  • Shipping and fulfillment is taken care of by your supplier
  • Once your store is set up, you can automate many marketing and sales processes
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With a print-on-demand company like Printful, you can easily create products to sell in your Shopify store quickly. Overall, print on demand is a simple, low-risk passive income source you can get up and running fast.

3. Sell digital products

Digital products are assets or pieces of media consumers can’t touch physically. These include downloadable or streamable files such as Kindle books, templates, plug-ins, or PDFs. 

Digital products are great passive income sources because they have high profit margins. You only have to make the asset once, and you can sell it repeatedly via your online business. There’s no storage or inventory needed. 

You can sell as many digital products as you want. Many creators scale passive income from digital assets by selling kits, printables, files, and other materials professionals can use. UX Kits, for example, sells personas, flowcharts, and wireframes to assist the design process.

The brand has sold its products to more than 10,000 customers in over 100 countries and continues to sell these lucrative products online today, demonstrating the potential of this passive income strategy.

4. Teach online courses

It’s easier than ever for educators to sell courses online. Whether it’s marketing, illustration, or entrepreneurship, you can create pre-recorded courses and start selling with few limitations. Similar to digital products, you can sell online courses repeatedly without holding any inventory or stock, generating passive income.

Teaching online requires some upfront investment in time. You’ll need to outline your course, record it, and create downloadable assets like templates for students to walk away with. 

Take Yegi Saryan, founder of Yegi Beauty, for example. After creating an online beauty brand selling eyelash extension products, she created an educational branch called Yegi Academy. Her lash classes help entrepreneurs around the world jumpstart their beauty careers, offering both online and on-site training.

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Because your online course is recorded ahead of time, you can shorten, lengthen, or edit it to apply to a broad range of class sizes and experience levels, expanding your passive income streams. You can create fully downloadable courses that students can finish at their own pace, or use software to automatically release lectures and materials at regular intervals.

Whichever way you look at it, teaching an online course is a great way to generate passive income at a low startup cost, other than investment of time.

5. Become a blogger

Starting a blog can be a challenging venture, but the blogging business model is only becoming more successful as a passive income stream. You don’t need to be an internet celebrity anymore to earn money online. All you have to do is find your people on one or two platforms, then send them to your website. 

It takes a little bit of time to build a blog. But if you create quality content and promote it through your platforms, you’ll build an audience big enough to generate a significant income stream. 

You could earn passive income from blogging by:

  • Selling affiliate products
  • Creating sponsored posts
  • Selling your own products 
  • Running ads through Google AdSense

The best part? You don’t need any design or coding skills to start a blog. With a content management system and hosting service like Shopify, you can get a blog up and running in no time. 

You’ll need to invest time into creating an SEO marketing strategy and producing and promoting the content, but know that your efforts will be rewarded: the return on these passive income investments can be upward of $30,000 per month, depending on how you monetize your blog.