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Make Money Online: Content or Service?

moneyFor as long as I can remember, I’ve had a burning desire to earn a living working with technology. I’ve sought out many different methods for making money online.

Much like Edison inventing the light bulb, I’ve found more ways how not to achieve the desired outcome. However, I’m glad to say that I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I recently decided to share my experience in my quest with a multi-part post on how to make money online.

About a month ago, I reached out to Jesse Stay for help in my quest. Jesse is a successful entrepreneur, published technology author, and guest author for Louis Gray. He is the creative mind behind SocialToo, a web service that provides some handy tools for some popular social networks. I asked Jesse for advice on how to turn my hobbies (programming and blogging) into a career. He provided some great info and there was a series of questions he asked that really got me thinking:

What would you like to do? Are you looking to become a developer? Do you want to become a blogger? Do you want to be an Entrepreneur?

Very good questions indeed. I think that ultimately I would like to be an entrepreneur and offer web services that are high in demand but low in supply. If I ever get to the point where I’m creating demand, I’ll know I’ve made it. I think answering these questions led me to the first step in making money online: do you develop content or develop a service?

Content Development

Behind door number one, we have content development. This has become one of the most popular methods for earning a living online. There are countless individuals online providing eager readers with relevant and useful information. The majority of them in the form of blogs.

Blogs are a great way for enthusiasts and self-proclaimed experts on any topic to provide information to the masses. It has become quite apparent that blogs are probably the best and easiest way to provide information online. It has been observed by many that search engines have an affinity for blogs. If you are a decent writer and have a lot of great information to share that others are seeking, blogging is definitely the way to go.

Providing Services

The second choice you have for making money online is to provide services online. Just as there are millions of people seeking information online, there are many others seeking services as well. Of course, the majority of them prefer free services but there are plenty that are willing to pay too.

Providing services online does not necessarily mean you need to be a programmer or web developer. If you already have a business or are interested in starting one, providing services online can easily become an extension of your business. This is especially true if your business is not limited by your geographic location.

It is relatively easy to build a website to promote and even sell the services online. Even if you don’t know how to do it, there are plenty of people out there who provide such services. Alternatively, you could find the information online on how to build a website and do it yourself. I find the latter to be the most enjoyable as well as rewarding.

What’s Next?

Once you’ve decided whether you wish to provide content or services, you need to decide the topic of your content or the type of service to provide. There are three very important factors to consider when making this decision:

  • Size of Market
  • Competition
  • Quality of Service

These will be the focus of my next post in this series.

Photo Credit: Tracy O

5 thoughts on “Make Money Online: Content or Service?”

  1. I have been hooked on technology since I started in computers way back in 1984. I even became a computer instructor for 17 years before I quit my day job to take up life on the internet in 2001.

    I would be the first to admit that it wasn't the brightest move I have ever made but after spinning in circles for a while I started to earn enough to survive. I was also spending all my waking hours to earn that.

    It wasn't until I decided to create a blog and share my passion for fly fishing that I realized I could make money online without the stress. It didn't take nearly as much of my time as it did with static web sites.

    Now I get to earn my living online talking about the hobbies I love and I even get time to spend on my hobbies.

    So for me it's about creating content for the blogs I have on hobbies.

    On my fishing blogs I have even made new friends that I have gone fishing with since meeting them. What a life.

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