The Skinny on Ways to Fatten Your Wallet Doing Business Online

Image of Wallet for Online BusinessAre you struggling to come up with the right online business idea?

Maybe you aren’t sure which direction to take your revenue strategy. That’s okay. Chances are you’re either swamped with ideas or you have none.

If you’re swamped, this article will add to your overwhelm :)

So, I just wanted to have fun and rapid-fire some ideas that have been zipping around in my head as of this writing.

If you’re looking to make money online then here’s to you:

The witty type

Are you into observational humor, wit, or comics? If you’re a memebase-type web surfer (examples in a moment) who gets your jollies from getting laughs then you can make a living from it (not easy).

You could model your approach after sites like Fail Blog, theoatmeal or icanhazcheeseburger. These sites drive massive amounts of viral traffic and monetize in ways such as:

  • Paid ads
  • T-shirts
  • Novelty items like posters and mugs

Just be sure you’re unique; blatantly ripping off another site won’t help your cause. Use Facebook to get your friends to share your content and help drive more buzz about your site. Sites like these rely on user-submitted content in addition to original work. That’s a great way to make people feel involved and have them spread the word for you.

Oh, and for the t-shirts try using I have one client that’s happily using their paid (there is a free option) service and he’s quite happy.

The service provider

Are you considering going into the service industry? Offering consulting or coaching?

Try leading with a free ebook or white paper. Make it extraordinary. Have your ebook well-designed by a pro or use myecovermaker (I found out about myecovermaker at Grow With Stacy). Over deliver in your free offering and showcase your knowledge.


It’ll boost your chances of word getting out about what you know and the value you deliver. Within that eBook or white paper make sure you allow people to share your work but with an attribution link back to you. You should also consider adding a relevant affiliate product (or two) within the book.

If you’re a consultant then make sure you’re showing up where your potential clients will be. Facebook, Twitter and even LinkedIn are great places to network and establish presence. When it comes to earning, build relationships and as I always advise – offer value first. Give before you receive.

Then create that landing page showing off what you offer. It takes all of five minutes to get your PayPal buttons set up on your services landing page and you’re good to go (speaking of which – I do have to work on mine).

The mogul

You’re too busy to be building sites from scratch and doing the grunt keyword research. You have some cash saved and you’re eager to invest it in a proven system.

Well, digital real estate is similar to real property. You can flip sites for cash just as investors flip homes. This is the act of buying up existing sites (privately or at auction) and selling them off for profit.

It’s not easy but you don’t have to be a genius to figure this out. Some places to keep an eye out for sites going up for sale and auction



Digital Point

Do your due diligence. Ask questions and ask the sellers to substantiate claims of traffic and revenue. What you don’t want to do is get caught up in an emotional bidding war or buy based on half-truths.

Pro Tip: There has been a stir lately from marketers in the website flipping space. They advise you to search for poorly-maintained (ugly) websites in lucrative industries.

One such marketer is Ryan Moran; you can find him here and here.

Some people are great at market research, building the site and gaining a little traction. But they lack design skills, sustainable marketing savvy, and passion in their projects.

What you do is find these ugly sites in the first through 5th page in Google results. Then you attempt to contact the website owner directly and negotiate terms (don’t make a direct offer – negotiate based on a multiple of earnings).

The community builder

So you like all that kumbaya blogging and warm, fuzziness created by your online friends? Driving hordes of traffic and grinding away at backlink building turns you off.

Then consider a continuity program. If you create premium content such as in-depth or how-to videos, podcasts (with interviews), and well-researched textual content then charge for access to it.

How much you charge is up to you and depends on what you’re offering, the market size, demand, your authority and so forth.

But this could be your ticket to greatness if you’re interested in helping people in a more intimate setting instead of affiliate promotions and reviews all over your site.

A business strategy like building your Facebook Page, setting up a landing page on your site, plugging in S2Member (free membership plugin) and integrating with PayPal would be a direct way to go.

Behind the S2Member wall on your WordPress website you could stash the content you’re charging for but keep some freebie content “out there” to attract new customers.

And You?

There’s no shortage of ways to earn revenue online. Contact me if you’re stuck at the nuts and bolts phase of implementing your idea.

Are you already taking action on any of the ideas I shared?

What other neat strategy would you like to share?

Photo: rh1n0

35 Responses to The Skinny on Ways to Fatten Your Wallet Doing Business Online
  1. Peggy Baron
    April 25, 2011 | 3:10 pm

    Hi Jon,
    I like all these choices, maybe that’s my problem! lol. But seriously, there are elements to each that I find attractive.

    What has worked best for me is to offer products in a specific area, learn the ins and outs of marketing the products, become an expert in this field, then share what I’ve learned with others who want to follow this business model.

    Very insightful way you’ve put this, Jon. I like how you take personality into account and then give examples.


    • Allie
      April 25, 2011 | 11:21 pm


      I think that is the key for me! (Wow, sometimes I just need someone to point out the obvious!) I need to learn one product and market that one, instead of trying to market a whole bunch. It makes sense.



    • Jon
      April 26, 2011 | 9:49 pm

      Hi Peggy!

      Ha, you know what’s funny? I come across all types of strategies I’d love to employ and tons of different site designs and features I’d like to try. But it’s just not possible. I’m glad you liked what I’ve shared here.

      Peggy, I’m a big fan of your approach. I think that’s a wonderful way to approach business online. Leading by example and experience and knowing what you’re talking about inside and out.

      Thanks so much…

  2. Allie
    April 25, 2011 | 11:20 pm


    I love the way you approach online business to connecting it with a personality type or type of goals one has in mind.

    It is true, if you just don’t enjoy all the socializing and “you link to me and I link to you” atmosphere then, sure, flipping blogs is a great way to work online.

    Some people are just cut out for certain jobs and if you are then work that angle. Don’t force something that is not there or you just don’t feel like doing. There are many options, just finding them is the challenge.


    • Jon
      April 26, 2011 | 9:52 pm


      Thanks, Allie, I’m happy that you enjoyed this. I think it matters what you bring to the table as a person. As much as we wish we could be like the leaders we look up to, we can only excel when everything aligns properly.

      Flipping sites is a secret new learning passion of mine. Been doing a lot of discussing with others about it, researching, watching and the like. It’s fascinating and makes a lot of sense to me as an added revenue stream.

      Great to have you here – stop by any time :)

  3. Hector Avellaneda
    April 26, 2011 | 10:20 pm

    Hey Jon, when it comes to book covers for ebooks or reports, I found

    Cover Action Pro

    . I havent used them but I plan to for development of my eCourse that I will be releasing later this year and I their amazing!

    • Jon
      April 26, 2011 | 11:03 pm


      Wow, impressive quality. Thanks for the reference, Hector. Those are wonderful covers. We’ll have to take this offline and chat about your eCourse sometime soon!

  4. Tim
    April 27, 2011 | 4:21 am

    Hi Jon,
    I like your style, personal, straight to the point!
    Out of all the systems highlighted, I’m most familiar with flipping websites because that’s exactly what I do. I build specifically blogs for sales and I enjoy it.

    It’s not so hard to do but then. It’s not the easiest thing to do although the reward is worth it. Anyone can do it though.

    If there’s anyone who wants a blog built or wants to buy sites, I’ve got some to sell…you can contact me.


    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:27 pm


      So you are active in the building and selling space, huh? We should chat sometime because I’d like to learn more about it and I like hearing it from people that are actively engaged. Keep at it man and I’ll definitely keep you in mind when it comes to this. Expect an email from me, thanks!

  5. Heather C Stephens
    April 27, 2011 | 7:40 am

    HI Jon,

    You certainly opened my eyes to other possibilities. T-shirts? I never would have thought about that, not that I think I’m cut out for it. LOL

    I did receive an offer from someone to buy Clever Marketer which totally threw me into a tail spin. It was a very nice offer, but I’m not ready to move on yet. It did make my mind turn though, wondering about building sites, filling them with awesome content, building an audience, and then selling them.

    I think I’d have to have an “investor” mentality about building sites to flip, instead of the “owner” mentality I have about CM. It’s so much a part of me, giving it up now would feel like giving away one of my kids. (Ok, so I’m being dramatic, but you get the point, I’m sure!)

    Thanks for the great eye-opening post!


    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:24 pm


      Wow you’re receiving offers on CM! Gosh, I guess that figures though you do have a great thing going over there. You know, I bet you’d really feel lost if you sold it off – there would be this void in your day. Stick around a while with us, deal? ;)

      I’m glad you appreciated the ideas shared here, thanks for the encouragement to keep me going.

  6. Heather C Stephens
    April 27, 2011 | 7:42 am

    Hi Jon,

    I was going to say, AWESOME HEADLINE when I first saw your post, but then I got so into it that I forgot to include it with my comment. Love the contrast! Great job!


    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:22 pm

      haha – thank you, Heather!

  7. Jane | SEO Blogs
    April 27, 2011 | 8:31 am

    Hi Jon,

    Wonderful, wonderful, that’s all I can say. You seriously overwhelmed me with bunch of great ideas.

    I was once motivated with the T-shirt thing when Annabel from getinthehotspot launched printed T-shirts.I didn’t order them but I got the spark that it could be a great business idea.

    Seriously Facebook helps in promoting these sorts of funny business ideas. I am sure I will pick up a couple of them and work on them.


    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:22 pm


      It’s “wonderful” to have you say that, thank you! If you do implement any of the ideas shared here I’d love to hear your experience along the way. I get a kick out of t-shirts and coffee mugs with witty sayings.

  8. Jeanine Byers Hoag
    April 27, 2011 | 11:40 am

    Jon, I love your title! I do have a free offer, but need to re-work my cover using myecovermaker (Stacy told me, too).

    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:15 pm

      Thanks, Jeanine.

      It was a silly title but fun. Stacy made a great find there!

  9. Josh Garcia
    April 27, 2011 | 11:46 am

    Hi Jon,

    You are offering a great deal of ideas and information for individuals looking at expanding their pockets.

    Have a great day…

    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:15 pm

      Howdy Josh,

      haha Expanding the pockets. Thanks for the encouragement, my friend. I’d be thrilled to hear about someone going out there and implementing. Talk soon…

  10. Jk Allen
    April 27, 2011 | 3:23 pm

    I love it Jon! You have all kinds of hustle within you!

    I think it’s a great idea to share this information because people are always looking to make money online…but what do they always find as the #1 mehtod…Affiliate Marketing. AM is cool, from what I’ve seen – but it’s surely not the only thing and it’s sure not for everyone.

    Thanks for keeping our shoes tied to the game of making money online.


    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:13 pm

      Hi Jk!

      Just sharing some of the hustle and flow with the masses, my friend! You got it right, the conventional affiliate marketing approach may not be for everyone so I like to share some outside-the-box tidbits now and again. Thanks for stopping in.

  11. Stacy | Grow With Stacy
    April 27, 2011 | 4:21 pm

    Hi Jon,
    What a fun read! You did a great job of explaining which type of blogging is the best fit for which personality! You offer a lot of great ideas to get people really thinking and moving!

    Thank you also for the mention!

    Take care,

    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:11 pm


      You’re welcome – you showed me a useful resource, I had to give credit :) Thanks for the appreciation and your revealing post recently about thyroid cancer.

  12. Samantha Bangayan
    April 27, 2011 | 5:49 pm

    Awesome idea, Jon! I didn’t even think to match a business style to a personality, especially in the online world. Considering how people seem to be able to be whoever they want to be behind their computer, I imagine many people being able to act out and become successful in all four roles and more! =)

    Like Heather, I was really interested in your “mogul” character. I had no idea that there was such thing as website real estate although it makes complete sense!

    Learned tons from this post, Jon. Thank you! =)

    • Jon
      April 27, 2011 | 10:10 pm

      Hi Samantha,

      Thanks, I’m glad you liked the ideas. Well, I’m all for searching for what is already selling and getting involved. But some folks need that 100% alignment with personality and values before they can engage. I’m just sharing that it’s okay to be that way, you just have to be creative.

      There are some serious website flippers out there – I’m just learning the ropes myself these days.

  13. Janet @ The Natural Networker
    April 27, 2011 | 11:21 pm

    Jon, aloha. What I so appreciate about reading your blog posts, Jon, is they are both educational and entertaining. Loved the idea of the mogul and think I will explore that a bit.

    Jon, you definitely gave us something for everyone. Currently I am in the process of creating another blog which will be on an entirely different topic. It may well be that part of that blog/business will evolve into a continuity program.

    Thx for stirring up the brain cells again, Jon. See you again soon. Aloha. Janet

    • Jon
      April 28, 2011 | 9:04 pm

      Hey Janet,

      Doesn’t the mogul have such an exciting ring to it? I am intrigued by this strategy and will likely be venturing into it; I suspect I’ll share my results with you once I have some to report.

      Hmm…new blog huh? I wish you well with it and I hope you keep me in the know. Thank you for stopping by.

  14. Adrienne
    April 28, 2011 | 2:12 pm

    There you go again Jon, giving us tons of scoop and SO much to think about. Man, I sure could have used some of these ideas when I was trying to decide which direction to go…

    I think creating a site similar to canhazcheeseburger would be a hoot! How much fun would that be and make money while you do it!

    Thanks for spelling them out for us. The next time I hear someone complain about they don’t know what to do, I’ll send them to this post. :-)

    • Jon
      April 28, 2011 | 8:47 pm


      Those humor sites always look like they’d be a blast to own and operate. Even for the sheer fun – forget the money. So, we’ll have to Skype soon about your latest epiphany concerning the course in which you were enrolled.

      Thank you kindly for sending anyone this way!

  15. Jym Tarrant
    April 28, 2011 | 11:23 pm

    Love it Jon.

    Great overview of different ways to make money online. I like that you broke it up for the different characters, sprinkled in some powerful tips and presented this all as one package.

    Great post with some cool value… Nice!
    All the best,

  16. Paul Wolfe
    April 29, 2011 | 5:01 pm


    Cool post. I’ve got another model for ya….THE TEACHER. This is how my bass guitar site makes the bulk of its revenue.

    You could think of it as a limited period continuity model (if you wanna speak Internet BS ;) )

    Here’s how it works:

    1) Find a topic that your target market wants to learns.
    2) Create a course that teaches it. So far I’ve created two detailed courses – one lasted for 11 Modules. And one for 30! (And yep I know 30 Modules is crazy – but it was my first one and I didn’t know I was gonna nearly kill myself creating that amount of content on a weekly basis).
    3) I usually Pre-Sell the course first – and don’t create anything other than a detailed outline.
    4) If enough people sign on, then I create the course on an ongoing week by week basis. (You see why that 30 week course nearly killed me).
    5) The students pay a monthly fee and get the modules on a weekly basis. (Get enough students and this is a pretty lucrative model – plus once you’ve created the course, then you run it again a year later and all you gotta do is send one email a week! MUCH EASIER!)

    Hope that’s of interest to your readers. Looking forward to catching up with you tomorrow.


    • Jon
      April 29, 2011 | 10:09 pm


      Ahh…yes. You ARE the teacher! Your model has worked out quite well for you and I’m thankful for having spoken with you directly to hear about it. I’m sure this is of interest to anyone here and I know it interests me as well. I see a lot of experienced marketers creating the content as the course continues as you do. Why not, right? You get paid to create the course as it develops.

      Thank you for sharing.

  17. Terje Sannarnes
    May 10, 2011 | 9:03 am

    As an online entrepreneur I can say that blogging is one of the best way to make money online. For example, a blog was just a hooby for my in the past. But now it is an additional source of income to my family budget.

    • Jon
      May 10, 2011 | 10:32 pm

      Hi Terje,

      Great to hear that you’re using the web to help your family’s bottom line. The opportunities available online these days are endless and exciting. It’s funny that many people start writing/blogging online as a hobby and leverage it for business later on.

  18. Writing to Attract, Retain and Engage
    June 9, 2011 | 3:13 pm

    [...] Drive to acquire: This is about wanting more money, more stuff, and more power. Some examples of content targeting this drive include 18 Months, 2 Blogs, Six Figures and The Skinny on Ways to Fatten Your Wallet Doing Business Online. [...]

Leave a Reply

Wanting to leave an <em>phasis on your comment?

Notify me of followup comments via e-mail. You can also subscribe without commenting.

Trackback URL