This article is spread over five pages:
How to find business ideas, domain name businesses.
Page 2: Online work, what you can do and how you can find it.
Page 3: Offbeat, unusual money-making ideas, making money just having fun.
Page 4: Unethical ways of making money
Page 5: Arbitrage, brokerage, finance businesses. Making money on eBay.
101 Adsense Alternatives
Unethical ways of making money
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No, I'm not endorsing any of the plans in this section but this article wouldn't be complete without mentioning these unmentionables.
65. Has someone has violated your online rights? Perhaps they don't have a privacy page on their site as required by law. Or haven't made their site disabled friendly (illegal in some parts of the world). Sue them. Particularly if you can get one of those no win-no fee vultures to act for you. A guy called André-Tascha Lammé kept getting calls from salesmen selling him stuff. He sued them in the Sacramento, CA, small claims court (easy to do). Guess what? Apparently the law in the US awards you $500 each time a telesales person makes an unwanted call to you. Lammé walked away with $6,000. What's the law where you are?
66. They haven't violated your rights? Sue them anyway. Why do you think so many people sue Google on the
most unlikely pretexts: giving them incorrect results, showing
anti-Christian sites in the results, having advertising, being racist, not
being racist? Find something unusual enough to
sue them about and some
dumb tabloid editor somewhere will pay you for an interview. Even if they
don't you'll generate publicity, get column inches, get people to your
67. Sell photographs: Live in a big city? Hang around at celebrity watering holes, click some photos. There's always someone online willing to pay for interesting ones - there are sites specifically for the buying/selling of photos like these. Get "lucky" and click the UN Secretary General picking up a hooker and you can buy that dream home in the Bahamas quicker than he can say United Nations Secretary General. Find Paris Hilton in another compromising video and.... you can buy Bill Gates. More mundane photos will get you money in places like these: 1, 2, 3.
68. Perform domain hunting services for businesses and then send bill them (even if they've never heard of you). Some businesses will pay up. A 0.01% success out of a million could be worth $100,000 (at a modest $10 each). For example, you could setup a program to extract company names from a Yellowpages database, run them through a misspelling generator and automail each company a list of domains you've identified that it would be in their interest to register as these are very similar to their company name. That's a service, right? The UK authorities have been clamping down on a lot of these operators... but that's only the UK based ones!
69. Exploit people's soppiness. Once upon a time there was a site with lots of lovely pictures of a beautiful little bunny who was very, very happy. And his owner loved him very much. But he needed money so he asked for money on the site and promised that if he did not reach his target he'd eat the bunny. He provided graphic recipes with bunny dish mock-up pictures. Donations followed, fast and swift.
70. Relationship Marketing: Who said relationship marketing was about companies building relationships with their customers? It's about marketing to relatives. About pimping products to your friends. Whatever the "network marketing" opportunities there ever were offline - from Amway to selling water filters - there's always a lot of stuff you can "personally recommend" to your friends online. People who don't open junk mail will open mail from you, because they trust you! And you can get paid for endorsing all manner of rubbish. (Till you lose all your friends, of course)
71. Become a volunteer editor in places like DMOZ and then take bribes to list sites. Is it illegal? In many parts of the world it probably is not, and so it does happen a fair bit. But, the less said about this bribery the better..
72. Petitions: People are constantly petitioning their bosses, their politicians, the rest of the world. Some of those petitioners pay for people to join their cause. Signing up again and again and again has proven lucrative for some, particularly those who know how to proxify their IPs.
73. Email SPAM. Nobody likes it, it's illegal in some countries, ISPs get very upset, recipients get even more upset but no list of how people make money online can be complete without a mention of this. What do you sell when you spam? Have a look at what type of spam YOU are getting, it will likely give you an idea of what pays. And the stock tips that seem to "accidentally" land in your inbox. But that's about all the help I'm giving you on the subject.
Or up your SPAM game to something more sophisticated. Plenty of ideas here - it's a simply awesome read.
74. Back to email SPAM. Wherever there's a big problem there's an opportunity: Run an free email service like Hotmail etc., but with a good SPAM filtering system. High startup costs, sure, but if you get enough people signing up you could be worth a few million very quickly. Google tried this with gmail and got about 4% of the market without advertising the service at all; accounts were given by invitation only. Now they make money from all the contextual (!) ads served within emails people send.