How to Make Money Online: The Ultimate Guide for 2022

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Written by Nikki Dee

Making money online is the perfect way to pay your bills and have the freedom you want. 

But there are just so many options out there, it’s hard to know which one is right for you.

I have been making money online in one form or another since 2006.  In that time, I have learned ALOT.

I bought into some scams. 

I have worked insane hours doing menial tasks I hated. 

And I have felt like I tried EVERYTHING.

As fun as all of that was, it wasn’t the most efficient way to do what I was trying to do - make money AND enjoy doing it.

Thus the reason for this blog post. Consider it part therapy session, part how-to guide. And probably a little bit “Dear Diary” in some places.

Because this guide represents everything I know about how to get started making money online - and enjoy doing it - after more than 15 years of experience.

So, grab some coffee and a pen and paper.

Who Can Make Money Online?

No matter what skills you have, even if you think you don’t have any, you have what it takes to make money online.

A lot of money.

How do I know this? 

Because you had the desire enough to click on this guide and the fortitude to read this far. Desire and stick-with-it-ness are the most important ingredients in online business success.

I spent years trying and failing to make money online. Just a few of the online money-making opportunities I tried include:

  • Freelance writing
  • Information publishing
  • Network Marketing
  • Course Creation
  • Ebook Publishing
  • Shopify Store Owner
  • Social Media Manager
  • Facebook Ads Manager
  • Selling Printables
  • Brand Coordinator
  • Marketing Director
  • Blogging
  • Affiliate Marketing
  • Copywriting
  • Selling Used Books on Amazon

I tried every opportunity that I heard about. I was determined to make it work.

Maybe you’ve done something similar.

But it wasn’t until I learned how to combine what I’m passionate about + an online business model that I truly figured out this whole online world in a way that gave me the life I wanted.

Two Ways to Make Money Online

There are basically two ways to make money online. You can either get an online job or start an online business.

There is no single right way to make money online.

But I firmly believe that there is a right way for you. Just like there is a right way for me.

Your online money-making endeavor won’t look exactly like anyone else’s. And that’s ok. 

There are some things to consider when deciding, and those are the same for everyone.

First, you need to decide if you want an online job or an online business.

How to Find Your Perfect Online Job

An online job is an amazing option for lots of people. I started out as a freelance writer on a long-term contract with a company.

It was the perfect way to ease out of the 9-to-5 mindset and into the work-from-home world.

An online job can feel a lot more secure because you don’t have to worry about expenses, getting clients and managing a business.

Especially in a post-Covid world, there are plenty of businesses who are willing to let their employees work remotely.

In a lot of ways, an online job is the best of both worlds - the security of a steady paycheck and the flexibility of working in yoga pants.

But there are some downsides to working for someone else. Most people who want to make money online want to have the paycheck AND the time freedom that comes with setting their own schedule. 

Most online jobs still have requirements for when and how much you have to work and for what you have to do. 

Where to Get an Online Job

When you are ready to make the leap out of the corporate world and start an online job, I suggest starting at a place like Fiverr.

There are a few reasons for this.

On Fiverr, you can use your skills to make money while you learn and gain experience needed to get bigger and better clients.

But on of the biggest benefits of websites like Fiverr is that you can see all of the potential for making money online. You can browse the skills and jobs that are posted.

This can be a huge eye-opening experience if you have never had experience with an online job.

Eventually if you start an online job, you may want to set up your own website to attract clients and raise your prices. But for a beginner, Fiverr is an excellent place to offer services that you have and get some experience (and money) while you learn.

How to Start an Online Business

The other way to make money online is to start your own business.

Starting an online business can be intimidating, especially if you have never run a business of any kind before.

There are a lot of moving parts and a lot of things to consider. However, there are ways to start slow and small to avoid getting overwhelmed and burned out.

A lot of first-time online business owners start a blog to get their feet wet. Or they begin by offering their freelance services to clients online.

These are both great ideas for online businesses - and the best part is that they are both scalable. You can start small and build your business up over time. The sky is the limit.

But blogging and freelancing aren’t the only two ways to make money online.  You can start virtually any kind of business online. Whatever you are passionate about can become your business.

Need some ideas? Check out the 52 Ways to Make Money Online post for some specific online businesses that you can start.

6 Tips for Online Business Success

Making money online comes from selling something - either something you create or do -  or something someone else has created or does. It doesn’t matter what you sell - products, knowledge, services.

The good news is that you don’t have to be a salesman to accomplish this. In fact, you don’t even have to show your face or talk one-on-one with customers to create a successful online business.

So, don’t get caught up on the selling part.  

Here are some tips for creating a successful online business.

  1. Find a Problem

This is the part of most “Make Money Online” tutorials that would tell you to find your niche, explore your passions.

But this isn’t that kind of tutorial. Niches are great things to have and passions fuel many parts of your online business, but those aren’t the place to start when you want to make money online easily.

Starting a business based on what you want to sell is the hard way.

Instead, find a problem that people are talking about - or that you have. A problem-based business sets you up for success because you already know that there is a need for what you are selling, and you know where to find those people.

The people that have the problem you are solving will be your first customers. And when you solve the problem well, they will tell others about you, and come back to you any time they need help.

  1. Sell a Solution

Once you have the problem and a viable solution, it’s time to turn that solutions in to something you can sell. Does your solutionsbest translate into products (t-shirts, books, weight loss pills, etc), services (writing, coaching, marketing) or knowledge (online courses, videos, etc)?

Next, think about who will create the solution? If you have the means and desire, you can create the product or service that you plan to sell. If not, you can find someone who has a good solution and promote their products. This is known as affiliate marketing.

Need some inspiration for what kind of products or services to sell? Check out the 45 Ways to Make Money Online blog post and 10 Ways I Make Money Online and You Can Too!

  1. Set Up a Website

Now that you have a problem and a solution, you need a place to sell that solution. And in the world of online business, that place is a website.

To create a website, you need:

  • A web hosting provider
  • A theme
  • WordPress

I cover the exact step-by-step process in the blog post How to Start a Blog.

  1. Start an Email List

Even though people have a problem, and you have a solution, you may notice that customers aren’t finding you in droves and buying instantly.

That is where an email list comes in handy.

With an email list, you can:

  • Keep in touch with customers
  • Answer questions about your product
  • Stay “front of mind” as the solution to their problem
  • Gain their trust as someone who can help them. 

Email marketing is the most essential part of online marketing and you won’t be sorry that you set this up from the very beginning.

I use GetResponse and I suggest them to everyone I know - not just because I believe they are the best marketing tool you can get, but also because you can start out with them for free.

My email marketing strategy is one part of my business that I wouldn’t do without.

Plus with GetResponse you can create more than just emails. You can create landing pages, sales pages and webinars - all of which you will need down the road as your business grows.

  1. Get the Word Out About Your Solution

Want to be wildly successful online? You MUST have people who buy things from you.

But more than that, they have to be a tribe of loyal followers who wants everything you produce and gives you their credit card information to get it.

8 Tips to Create a Successful Online Business

Once you have the five steps above down pat, use these tips to really gain momentum in your business.


Know Who You Sell To

Trying to sell to everyone will only get you confused and failing fast. That’s why starting with a problem is th quickest way to online success. Because the people who have that problem are your built-in audience.

Being able to define that audience can also help you find them. Wherever they hang out online, be there.

Know How You’re Different

Know what makes you stand out. Are you someone who has tried what you’re selling and it worked for you? Are you a dietician who has specialized knowledge of how to help moms lose their baby weight? Why are you qualified to sell this product. Tap into your talents and knowledge to find what makes you unique.

This differentiation will help you stand out from your competition and will make selling so much easier.

Your Freebie(s)

One great way to get people’s email addresses is to promise them value. A free report, checklist, recipe, etc. Whatever you sell, find a way to give some simple, free value related to it.

Set up a form on your website to capture the emails of web visitors in exchange for this freebie. You can easily do this with GetResponse and their powerful landing page builder.

Tell Everyone About Your Business

Post on social media accounts letting people know about your business and your freebie.

Your friends may support you just because they know you, but odds are that some of them are also in your target market.

Spread the word through your warm market (people you know in real life), in groups online and anywhere you can. 

But remember not to be obnoxious. No one likes those people who are only out to get a sale. Help first, for free, with no ulterior motive. Then the sales will follow.

Email Your List

The purpose of getting all those email addresses is to be able to connect with your audience. Email them regularly. And spend some time developing your email marketing strategy.

Not only will this help you connect  with your existing audience, but it is a great way to ask them to refer you to others that might need your help.

Start a Blog

Writing blog posts is a great way to demonstrate your expertise and problem solving skills. You can also do this with a YouTube channel and a podcast. Any way to regularly talk to your audience is a great way to grow your business.

Learn exactly what you need to know in How to Start a Blog and Make Money - all the tips, tricks and tools you need to get set up and ready to do business.

Be Generous

The more you give people, the more they will know your expertise and what you are capable of helping them with.

It sounds counterintuitive that giving away more will help you sell more, but it works.

The more people see what you can do - whether that means reading books you’ve written or using printables you’ve made - the less “selling” you will have to do.

And they will begin to understand that if this is what you give away for free, then your paid content must be amazing.

Sell with Your Content

As you create content online like blog posts and social media posts, keep in mind what products, services and information you sell. Always work toward getting people onto your email list and letting your list know you sell things.

The goal of everything that you put out should be to demonstrate how you can help people solve their problems. This will draw them into your business and get them ready to pay for your help.

That’s it. That’s everything you need to build an online business. Granted, that’s a lot. I know six steps doesn’t sound like much, but it isn’t about the number of steps I give you. It’s about the number of steps you complete.

Get Help

Starting an online business is no easy feat, especially while you’re raising little ones. There is no shame in getting help - whether from a friend who has been there or a business coach. Or just a blogger you follow.

You aren’t alone on this journey. You can do this!

Still looking for more information about how to make money online? Check out these posts for more.

All printables available on this website are for personal use only. You may not alter, sell or redistribute them in any form without the written consent of the author, Nikki Dee Woods. If you wish to share these printables with someone, please share the blog post link with them.

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About Nikki Dee

From the time she was young, Nikki Dee knew she wanted to be  a writer. After spending years making money as a freelance writer, she became a mom. With her days full of squealing toddlers, client calls became almost impossible and Nikki Dee decided to start her own blog. Now she helps other moms who are trying to find their path to a dream life.

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