The internet is a great place to make extra money if you have skills people need. You can work in the privacy of your own home at your own pace, many people have even replaced their day job by becoming a virtual worker or freelancer. Even so, you're only as good as the hours you bill. Have you ever thought about selling work online that's not billable hours?
In the digital age you can definitely make money online by billing for your creative, development, design, administrative, or writing work. By creating digital goods you can repetitively sell online, you can create a passive income stream (that doesn't rely on billable hours).
If you think about all the stores where you live, who is consistently taking in the most money? Car dealership? The mall? Insurance agent? Think again. Where do you go most often - the grocery store. They have consumable goods that need to be purchased on a regular basis. If you're a local handyman, and someone calls you to install a light bulb, you don't make any more money until someone calls you with a new job.
However, if you manufacture blue lightbulbs and get an order from Walmart to sell in all their stores, you just made thousands of sales. If Walmart replenishes their stock on a regular basis, you have a repetitive income.
This is the way you need to think about working online if you want to earn repetitive long term income not dependent on billable hours.
Use Your Strengths
First figure out what kind of content your skillset is best at creating. Photoshop (PSD) templates, illustrations, posters, flyers, or stock photography. Maybe you're good at designing fonts, flyers, posters, logos, business cards, t-shirts, or print media. If you do development or coding you might be suited for themes, plugins, scripts, modules, or web or mobile apps. Even if you're not a designer or developer - you might still have a skill allowing you to create a text, audio, or video ebook or tutorial in your area of expertise.
Partner With a Digital Marketplace
Having digital content to sell is great, but when you're on your own to promote and sell it - your mileage may vary depending on the time you have to invest to get your name or brand out there. business carefully choose where they put their next location based on demographic, foot traffic, location to other businesses and homes, etc. On the other hand, a mall charges higher rent than an empty plot of grass as well.
Do some research to find the best place to sell your items online based on your commissions and the community. For instance, you would potentially sell different items for the Amazon Kindle than you would in iTunes or Android stores. For self-publishing or print books, the Lulu website might be better. If you have software, a download website or Digital River might be best suited for that. There are all kinds of websites for designers and developers to sell items as well - like CMS templates and themes, stock photos, audio, and video, code, graphics, images, fonts, illustrations, etc.
Cultivate Your Profile
Once you have content you want to sell, and a place to upload it, be sure to work your profile to its fullest. You probably aren't going to get rich quick by only uploading an item or two. The more content you upload, the more you can sell. Even though most content oriented websites have ads and promotion, as well as a steady stream of buyers - you should be sure to do promotion of your brand and items on your own as well as needed. Use social media and your website or blog to announce where and what you're selling, but more importantly engage with the other sellers and community at large as well (just as if you were working a physical job with co-workers). In the end, the more effort you put into it - the more income you'll see as a result.