We’ve all got bills to pay. But in the modern digital focused era, needing to find a job is less of a necessity and more of a fall back – especially if you find a clever way to automate your income.
Yes, the world of making a passive income has become the holy grail for many. You’ll see many gurus telling you how to you can make a great regular income from a side hustle or whatever, only to charge you a fee for their course. Funny story – that’s their passive income right there.
But what about you? How do you go about finding something you can do to make a good wage using automated methods?
Before we start the list, lets be clear what we’re talking about here.
What is automated or passive income?
The idea behind a passive income is that you don’t do much, on a day to day basis, to earn that dough. You should be able to set up a process which then makes money with minimal input from you.
That doesn’t mean you do NOTHING. You might still need to go in to your emails and respond, or maybe package up some items and ship them off, or do some work from time to time.
But the idea is that you don’t need to sit down and work ten hours a day slaving away for a few bucks.
What is a side hustle or second income?
A side hustle is something you can do alongside your regular job to earn some extra income. This is one of the most popular ways for people to learn and new skill and even move to a new industry, as people often run a side hustle before committing.
So, having set the definitions for an automated or passive income vs a side hustle or second income, lets get started.
How can you earn a good automated income in 2022?
1. White label website building
People want to build websites for all manner of reasons, and offering a good website building service can be a good money spinner. Is this a 100% automated income method? Actually, no, you’ll need to do *some* work.
But here’s what makes this an easy income idea…
Use a simple template, such as a favourite WordPress or Wix page, and simply customise it.
You may also need to understand how to make some extensions work and even how to make a site look different from everyone else.
By doing this you can create websites for specific industries such as travel, local services, crypto and whatever else people want sites for.
But… You only need to work on the customisation rather than the whole site building. Almost automated.
2. Sell ebooks
Selling books on Amazon’s Kindle platform has been a popular method to generate a second income for several years now. But… It’s still a good way to make an automated income.
Yes, you do need to create the content to start with. And yes, you will need to format it correctly and create a good listing. You will also need to do some marketing and get the word out there about the existence of your ebook.
But the good news is, once you’re up and running, this is a truly automated income that can generate big bucks.
One tip is to create a series of books, whether that’s fiction or non-fiction.
As a series, obviously, you could create a world or character that draws people in and makes them want to read more.
For non-fiction, you can build in-depth guides and then smaller guides that tie in to progressing in a specific area.
3. Sell your music
Making music in 2022 is easier than ever, and actually, many people want royalty free music. This doesn’t mean ‘free’ music, but simply that they pay for it and use it as they wish without needing to pay everytime it’s used.
There are sites where you can upload your beats and make a regular automated income. If you’re one of those producers who always seems to have a stack of half finished beats, this is the perfect opportunity to earn some money from them.
Create jingles, loops, short atmospheric instrumentals and even mock versions of pop songs which could be used by YouTubers and corporate video producers.
And then upload them to sites like Storyblocks, Shutterstock or Adobe’s library of resources to earn a solid automated income.
4. Real estate rental
If you own your home, or some land, you can automate your income by using this asset. An obvious way to do this is with holiday lets, such as Airbnb, or renting out a spare room to a lodger.
But you can also use land to rent out for things such as camping, private events or to display advertising.
Obviously this depends on the land you own. Got an apartment in a big city? Take the time to go and stay with family in the peak season and rent it out on Airbnb…
Got a field or space which could work well for events? Rent it out for weddings, markets, small music events, corporate events or whatever else works. Run it past the neighbours first though, eh.
5. Stocks that pay dividends
An ever popular way to make a passive income is to invest in stocks that pay out on an annual basis. Many companies pay their shareholders a dividend on profits – although the amount you make depends on the amount invested.
You’ll need to do some research into the best stocks that pay dividends, but these UK stocks are good places to start.
6. Create NFTs
The craze for NFTs really took off in 2021, alongside the crypto gold rush. And yes, while some people made some INSANE money with NFTs, this isn’t the easiest way to make an automated income.
For those not in the know, NFTs are digital assets, often in the form of artwork.
The best performing NFTs have been those with either a collectable value, or one with grants membership to some sort of club. Bored Apes are the best example, but there are others too.
The clever way that NFTs pay out a passive income is that each time they sell, the original creator can make a percentage of that sale.
So to make this plan work, you’ll need to give your NFTs some value beyond just being a picture that you doodled in MS Paint.
7. Run a website
Want to make money from websites? Oh hi there…
Yes, you might have noticed that Global Playboy here is just one of a number of websites run by the owners. And yes, there are Google Adsense ads on this particular site.
But there are multiple ways you can earn money from running a website – which includes:
- Paid guest posts from businesses
- Display ads (Ezoic, Adsense)
- Affiliate marketing links
- Exclusive features/paid partnerships
You’ll need to make sure your site is quality (much like this one, right) and not just a spammy link farm. And it can take time to build up organic traffic to get to the level of good automated income. But once you get there, it can be a good way to earn a solid second income.
If you’re a regular reader to this site, you might have noticed that we are big fans of crypto. And one of these reasons is that there are so many ways to earn a passive income from crypto…. If you know what you’re doing.
Yes, like everything else on this list, you will need to make an effort to learn some techniques and do some research. But the rewards can be great!
Some common ways to earn an automated income from crypto include:
- Yield farming
- Bot trading
- Long term investing/HODLing
- Copy trading
Each of these is a complex technical process in itself, so check our guides about earning with crypto.
9. Outsourced service
Outsourcing obviously means that you need to manage other people, which has some pluses and minuses. On the plus side, you avoid doing all the hard work. On the minus, you need to manage people. Which is, frankly, a full time job in itself.
But there are a number of services which you can outsource, for example:
- Cleaning and property/facilities management
- Digital marketing
- Accounting and bookkeeping
In short, if you can find a way to bring in clients, and then give that work to contractors or employees, you’ve found one of the oldest ways in the book to automate your income.
10. Create a digital product
You can generate a good residual and passive income by offering a product that people can buy online, without you needing to package and send it. One of the most popular ways of doing this is with online courses – it’s also a popular method used by contrepreneurs (a term coined by Mike Winnet).
But you’re not a contrepreneur, are ya? No – of course you aren’t.
You want to genuinely create a useful digital product that people want and need right?
Digital products might include:
- Online courses
- A bot that performs a useful action (as part of a subscription, for example crypto trading, lead generation)
- Software such as games or business services
Again, dig deep and you’ll be able to think of some great ways to automate your income using digital or downloadable products.
11. Crowdfunding and Angel investing
The term Angel Investing might make you think of billionaires with big bankrolls taking a punt on a new software product. But actually, anyone can be an angel investor by using crowdfunding platforms.
You’ll need a knack for spotting a business with potential, not just investing in a guy who wants to print t-shirts or whatever. And you can even find projects on popular crowdfunding platforms like Kickstarter, GoFindme and IndieGoGo which could pay you solid dividends in the event of a successful product launch.
Of course, like pretty much everything on this list, there are zero guarantees. You’ll also need to have some decent disposable income available as projects that pay their funders typically want at least 1k invested.
Don’t fancy online crowdfunding? Chances are there are local entrepreneurs near you looking for a chance to start their business ideas. Attend local networking events, or even set up your own Dragons Den/Shark Tank style pitch session and see what you can find.
12. Peer to peer lending
Who needs a bank anyways? Actually, quite a few people. But for many reasons, people prefer not to deal with banks.
Enter peer to peer lending, also referred to as P2P lending. This is where investors (such as yourself) stake their funds for borrowers to use, and earn a passive income on the interest.
You’ll normally pay a small fee (around 1% of similar) to invest your money. And you’ll also need to commit to a time frame, often a minimum of one year, but it can be anything up to 3 or 5 years.
But you can be earning interest of up to around 12% PA – which is much better than leaving it in a bank.
You’ll also find a huge choice of more risky crypto based P2P lending tools. These yield farms often require a lower time frame investment period, and they can pay out absurdly high APY. But with this comes much bigger risk.
You should always do your research, whatever investment tool you’re using.
Not financial advice/DYOR
Just as a final note, nothing in this article is financial advice, but serves only as a point of reference for you to get some ideas. ALWAYS do your own research before starting a new business venture or investing.
But, if you do it right, you could be earning an excellent residual income with one of these automated earning ideas.