Do you want to learn the best ways on how to make money online in South Africa, join the online workforce, or do your dream job? While there is a high demand for online workers today, getting started can be difficult.
Even if you’ve researched the top online business ideas and chosen your best match, you may be unsure of how to get started or what to expect.
We’ve compiled a list of innovative online business ideas for a digital career to help you get started. But, before we get into the best online business ideas, let’s talk about how to figure out which path is right for you.
The last year has inspired all of us to appreciate the wonderful inside. It’s no wonder, therefore, that interest in earning money online from the comfort of our own homes is growing.
Millions of people are now living in what used to seem like a faraway fantasy. Those of us who have worked remotely from our home offices for the last few years have a lot less to explain at family gatherings—the path to earning a significant amount of money online has become much clearer.
20 Smart Ways to Make Money Online in South Africa 2021
1. Start Blogging
Blogging for a living has evolved beyond small businesses and side hustles. Anyone can now develop an audience and earn a lot of money from their blog by putting out excellent material.
Bloggers, as opposed to receiving information from a corporate blog, adopt a more personal approach that connects with a targeted audience.
Choosing a niche is essential for running a successful blog. There are a plethora of them on the internet. You could be the go-to person for a specific topic in a specific location (for example, restaurants in Toronto) or for a specific segment in certain categories (like vegan keto recipes and lifestyle).
Focusing on a specialty allows you to communicate with an audience and produce high-quality material for them, which may lead to leads and sales for your blogging business.
But how do you monetize your blog? So, after you’ve learned how to start a blog, you may monetize it in a variety of ways:
- Selling physical items that your readers would like, such as pillows or t-shirts
- Offering digital products such as designs, digital art, courses, templates, or photography that you can create once and sell again and again.
- Selling freelance services such as consulting, writing, bookkeeping, or other money-making hobbies
- Becoming an influencer and doing paid brand promotions
- On platforms such as Patreon, you can sell subscriptions or memberships to exclusive content.
So how do you get started?
It’s simple: when you initially start your side hustle, you don’t have a lot of traffic or exposure. As a result, you should raise the price of your product early on in your blogging adventure.
One strategy is to start with a B2B consultancy funnel and sell to companies rather than individuals. Businesses have more money than people, so instead of concentrating on advertisements and affiliate schemes at first, concentrate on high-end consultancy.
This new blogging strategy for making money is built on three main success pillars:
- Choose a niche for your blog based on the audience’s financial possibilities, professional leverage, and market need.
- You may increase your backlink acquisition and Domain Authority (DA) quicker by not writing as much and outsourcing some parts of your content and SEO operations.
- Finally, by implementing the right high-end blog monetization strategies at the right time in your blog’s lifecycle, you can 100x your revenue while only closing 3-4 high-end clients rather than hundreds of affiliate sales.
These strategies can help you earn thousands of dollars faster and with less visitors. If this piques your curiosity, be sure to read my whole article on the greatest ways to earn money blogging.
Finally, the first step I suggest for establishing a blog is to acquire web hosting and create a WordPress site.
Here’s how you can start:
- Go to Bluehost.com and click the Get Started button.
- Choose your hosting plan ($2.95/month is 63 percent discount when you use my link).
- Enter a new domain name or choose an existing domain.
- Fill up your account and billing details.
- Sitelock Security and Codeguard Basic may be disabled.
- You’re finished when you click Submit.
Begin with Bluehost for $2.95/month (63 percent off).
2. Start a Professional SEO Consultation
If you understand search engines and have technical knowledge of platforms such as Google Ads and Google Analytics, being an SEO consultant may be a profitable choice for you.
Many small business owners are unaware of the effect search engine optimization (SEO) may have on their bottom business.
Start your online consulting business by teaching business owners about the potential of SEO in transforming their websites and increasing conversion rates.
You might utilize your marketing talents to demonstrate to business owners the advantages of utilizing analytics data, smart keywords, and content structure to increase organic web traffic.
If you’re new to SEO or want to brush up on your digital marketing knowledge, check out Moz’s Beginner’s Guide to SEO. Keep in mind that Google’s algorithms are always changing, so you’ll need to keep learning about SEO to remain relevant and effective in this area.
3. Become a Photographer or videographer
The internet loves videos, whether they are of animals, comedy skits, or news snippets. Someone with a keen eye and knowledge of filmmaking may earn a lot of money producing content for businesses that need it, from social media postings to product films.
The drawback is the cost. First and foremost, you will generally need your own film equipment, which is not inexpensive. Ambitious projects also need the employment of a film crew, perhaps with professional actors, as well as extra costs such as studio space or props.
To get started, create a reel of your finest work. This serves as your portfolio, which you may present to potential customers to determine whether your style matches theirs. You may wish to perform some pro gratis work for business references, much like content writers.
4. Launch a Dropshipping Store
Let’s start with one of the most popular methods to earn money online. Dropshipping’s popularity is quickly increasing, demonstrating its potential as a method to earn money online, according to Google Trends.
There’s plenty of evidence that dropshipping is a legitimate method to earn money online, with success stories like how an entrepreneur made $6,667 in eight weeks or how a shop owner made six figures selling just one product.
If you’re unfamiliar with dropshipping, it’s a business model in which you sell a product to a consumer, but the supplier stores, packages, and delivers the goods to your customers on your behalf.
You have access to millions of goods via Oberlo dropshipping, which you may add to your shop. Oberlo’s toolset also enables you to hand-pick your product pictures, modify item descriptions, and give your business a personalized feel so that customers like buying from you.
5. Look for freelancing Jobs online
Make money online by using sites like Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer.com. These websites provide chances to work as a freelancer in a number of fields, including writing, programming, design, marketing, data entry, and virtual assistant.
Do you speak a second language? Check out sites like Gengo or One Hour Translation, or create your own website to generate business. Keep track of the going rate for the kind of work you do, no matter what sort of freelancing you do, so you know whether you’re charging too much or too little.
Your profile will be approved by Upwork within 24 hours. However, bear in mind that landing your first freelancing job may take some time. Payment varies depending on the site.
On Upwork, you get paid 10 days after the billing period finishes once you and the customer have reviewed the job. You get paid after the job order is completed on Fiverr, however you cannot withdraw money for another 14 days.
6. Start a podcast
Podcasting is on a meteoric ascent. In 2006, just 22% of people in the United States listened to podcasts. That figure has already risen to more than 75%. You may also earn a lot of money.
So, how can you get your company off to a good start? The first step is to design your podcast episodes and to get the necessary software and equipment.
The next step is to sign up for podcast hosting. A podcast host is a service that stores and distributes your audio files to major podcast networks such as iTunes, Stitcher, TuneIn, Spotify, and others.
7. Launch an Online Course
Would you be willing to teach people a new skill? Online learning is a multibillion-dollar industry that is growing year after year, with some teachers earning millions of dollars from their courses.
Online courses, as opposed to membership websites, are more organized and concentrate on teaching someone a certain skill or subject.
Course expectations have risen over the years, so be prepared to devote a significant amount of time to creating content for your course.
Successful courses on online course sites like Udemy and Treehouse often contain hundreds of articles, hours of video, downloadable materials, and more. Udemy, an online education platform, offers over 100,000 courses in its catalog and millions of clients.
It is a massive marketplace that you can tap into, but keep in mind that Udemy charges a 50% fee for enabling you to offer courses. This requires you to price your course appropriately, which may be challenging in such a competitive industry.
If you already have a blog or a big social media following, you may want to explore hosting an online course yourself so that you can retain 100% of the revenue you make.
8. Sell on Amazon.com
Amazon has evolved into a platform that invites new online businesses. It just takes a few minutes to create an account and a few more minutes to publish a product listing.
The site boasts a large readership, a worldwide marketplace, and is a popular location for product discovery and research. Listing optimization may aid in the discovery of your goods and the creation of new possibilities.
Furthermore, Amazon’s in-app promotions may boost your brand’s exposure among highly targeted consumers.
However, several ecommerce businesses are skeptical about Amazon’s long-term viability. While the marketplace is excellent for surfacing desirable goods for consumers, it may be difficult for sellers to get their business recognized.
Amazon draws a large number of resellers of the same goods that you do. Adding fees and attempting to distinguish your brand may result in you working more to create sales but not growing your bottom line income.
9. Develop an App
If you’re not a developer, you’re probably feeling a little stuck when it comes to this money-making concept. Fortunately, there is a method to have an app created that does not need any programming knowledge.
Marketers are increasingly turning to freelancing marketplaces to locate low-cost developers to build applications for them.
When it comes to monetizing your software, adding it to Google Play and the App Store is your best option. And, contrary to popular belief, having a free app may help you earn more money than having a premium app.
You may earn money by adding advertising or premium features to a free app. Because the free software will attract a larger number of users, it will be simpler to upsell them.
10. Become an Instagram Influencer
Starting an Instagram business may be appropriate for you if you create excellent photos, are comfortable self-promoting, and have a target audience that would be interested in you or a topic you are acquainted with.
Instagram is a social media platform where creatives, people, and companies can post photos and videos. Almost all of Instagram’s revenue comes from brand advertising.
To become a full-time Instagrammer, you must publish “stories” and photos, engage with followers, and collaborate with businesses to promote their goods.
You may get started using only your smartphone, although a high-quality camera and computer are suggested. Because social-media-based companies are unlikely to go away, establishing a presence on Instagram may lead to long-term success.
There is no upper limit to how much money someone can earn on Instagram since success is directly proportional to follower numbers and engagement. Many successful Instagrammers earn more than $100,000 per year.
11. Work as a virtual assistant
Do you have exceptional organizational and task management skills? Perhaps it’s time to put those talents to use by working as a virtual assistant. VA services usually consist of basic administrative duties such as data entry, travel reservations, and phone answering. Prior expertise in this area is preferred, but not necessary.
Platforms such as TaskRabbit and Zirtual make it simple for VA professionals to locate work. They let you to develop a clientele by creating an online profile and signing up for jobs such as data research, virtual help, or simple errands.
12. Participate in an Affiliate Program
An affiliate marketing scheme connects affiliates with advertisers by paying a percentage on sales earned through affiliate links. These connections are publicized on social media or on the affiliate’s website.
Many affiliates have achieved success in this business, earning an average of $20,000 per year. Signing up for more than one affiliate network increases your chances of receiving greater rewards.
With so many affiliate programs and networks to select from, be sure to join the ones that are relevant to the topic of your website. For example, if you run a computer and technology site, you may become a Hostinger affiliate.
Hostinger isn’t the only business that provides affiliate marketing opportunities. The following are some of the most lucrative affiliate programs and networks:
- SEMrush offers a 40% monthly commission rate on all membership levels.
- CJ Affiliate is a well-known affiliate network that offers jobs from trustworthy companies.
- The eBay Partner Network provides a diverse variety of specialized goods.
- Tripadvisor receives a 50% commission for each visit made through your affiliate link.
- GetResponse provides both one-time and recurring commissions.
Living off of affiliate marketing requires trial and error, just like any other business strategy. Some of the most common affiliate marketing blunders include selecting the incorrect niche, failing to provide excellent content, and failing to monitor website performance.
13. Write and publish a Kindle eBook
If there is one thing that students excel in, it is research and writing. Anyone may use the Kindle shop to publish an eBook and earn money on Amazon. And, since the Kindle app is now accessible on virtually any device (laptops, iPads, cellphones, and, yes, Kindles), your worldwide market potential is enormous!
You get 70% of the sale if you price your book between £1.49 and £6.99. Given that Amazon is the ultimate selling machine (and keep in mind that people are eager to spend), it is a great bargain.
The secret to eBook success is to provide value and write nonfiction. Simply combining material you’ve studied and collected on a common issue (e.g.’secrets’ to getting a job) and presenting it in an easy-to-digest manner (an eBook) justifies someone paying a few dollars on it.
14 Start a YouTube Channel
You can earn money on YouTube if others can. Ryan, a 7-year-old who reviews goods on his YouTube channel, was the highest-paid YouTuber in 2018, earning $22 million.
To develop a large, devoted following, your YouTube channel should concentrate on a particular specialty. You may, for example, offer beauty lessons, broadcast video games, review goods, teach skills, produce spoof films, or anything else you believe would appeal to an audience.
The key to earning money on YouTube is to produce material that people desire, whether it’s educational or entertaining. You may use a humorous title to encourage viewers to watch, or you can utilize keywords suited for YouTube search.
Once you’ve achieved 1,000 subscribers, you may start monetizing your channel with YouTube advertising.
15. Create an Affiliate Website
The concepts of developing a successful blog may be used to the development of a lucrative affiliate website. This involves producing interesting content, promoting your website, and following search engine ranking standards.
In contrast to blogs, an affiliate website focuses on a single product. This is why the majority of affiliate websites include product reviews.
People who are looking for a product review are more inclined to buy it after reading an informative review, thus the chances of earning a referral commission are significantly enhanced.
While personal knowledge of a product is beneficial, you may create excellent product evaluations by either paying people to write for you or summarizing what others have written.
16. Become a Social media consultant
Larger corporations may engage an agency or a full-time employee to manage their social media accounts, while small companies must often conduct their own social media marketing.
With so many obligations, business owners are often too busy, overwhelmed, or misinformed about the value of a social media presence to devote time to creating and executing an effective social media strategy.
As a social media consultant, you may assist small companies in determining the most effective strategies, posting schedules, and content for their target audience. As their number of followers increases, so will your business’s.
While Facebook and Twitter remain the most popular business networks, companies often struggle with more visual platforms such as Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr, and Snapchat.
All of these platforms have large consumer audiences, but many companies are unaware of their size, effectiveness, and how to make them work for their brand.
If you have a history in social media marketing and a love for photography, concentrating your consulting business on a single platform, such as Instagram, may be a fantastic way to earn money while assisting other companies in improving their content and achieving their business objectives.
17. Web Design Business
Anyone with adequate expertise in this area may turn a web design business into a highly profitable option. Because almost every business need a website to be successful in today’s market, there are many employment possibilities for web designers.
To get started, you’ll need nothing more than a computer, like with many other design businesses.
Startup expenses are cheap, particularly since most web designers already have a large portion of what they need to get started. Aside from the gear and software, you’ll need to invest some money up front to promote yourself to customers.
The need for excellent web designers is unlikely to diminish anytime soon, so finding a consistent supply of both short-term and long-term customers is doable with the proper efforts.
A typical freelance web designer earns $75,000 a year. With new employees and services, the amount could potentially exceed six digits.
18. Online Resume Writing Services
Resume writing is something that nearly everyone must do, but few like or feel secure in doing so. Because they are essentially creating sales letters for their customers, resume writers must have both writing and business abilities.
This is a fantastic business opportunity for anybody who can write professionally and effectively.
Startup expenses are very cheap, since you can get started with only a computer and a website. Because the need for excellent resumes is unlikely to decrease, this may be a highly profitable and successful business.
A well-known CV writer may charge $1,000 each resume, so only 100 customers per year can bring you to $100,000.
19. Remote tech support
Many small companies cannot afford to hire a full-time IT staff, so when their systems go down, they typically contact a computer-savvy friend or family member.
If you are technically knowledgeable and have prior expertise working on computers and networks, you may remove the need for them to call in a favor by providing quick remote technical help.
Although some employers prefer that you have a technical degree, many will value your experience and expertise instead.
You may start to develop your remote tech support business by inquiring about the requirements of friends, family, and local business owners. Freelance tech support jobs may also be found on job sites such as Upwork.
20. Sublet a Spare Room
Today, the lodging industry is one of the most lucrative. The bed and breakfast industry alone is estimated to be worth $3.4 billion. Hosting visitors may be a part-time career that generates a passive income stream. It just has to be serviced on a regular basis, allowing you the flexibility to work your own hours.
If this is how you wish to supplement your income, try advertising your room on one of the following platforms:
- Airbnb is the world’s biggest internet renting marketplace.
- Homestay is a common option for young people.
- FlipKey – Because it is a subsidiary of Tripadvisor, it has a huge readership.
- Vrbo is best suited for listings that can accommodate families and groups of more than two travelers.
- Rent Like A Champion is ideal for listings near college and sporting venues.
The cost of a room is heavily influenced by its location, facilities, amenities, room type, and season. In addition, most platforms charge service fees and demand hosts to pay lodging taxes. As a result, before monetizing your place, study pricing and rental regulations.
There has never been a better moment to pursue your ambitions! With all of the new social media platforms and communication tools, it’s simpler than ever to do what you love while still making money.
Not only does modern technology make remote work more feasible, but the communication network enables you to work for individuals all over the globe. Perhaps none of the local businesses enjoy your videos, but to an entrepreneur in India, you might be just what they’re searching for.
Just remember to keep branding and design in mind while you create your new online business. It’s alright if you’re not a design guru! You may always hire a professional designer to make your website and brand stand out.