15 Best Business Ideas for Passive Income

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It’s no secret that the best way to become financially secure is to own your own business. Let’s get into some of the best business ideas for passive income.

In today’s information-rich, a technology-laden business world the requirements of owning your own means of production have changed.

It is now more possible than ever to make your money work for you, rather than you constantly working for your money.

It’s called passive income. Passive income is money that you earn after having made an initial investment in a value-producing system.

Here, we will explore the best business ideas for passive income and free yourself from financial insecurity. 

How to Find Passive Income Business Opportunities

It may be the case that your business plan will work as desired with just one of any of the following passive income ideas.

You may need to combine them, mix-and-match, and optimize them to work best for you. It all depends on the nature of your product or service and how you do business.

This guide is a two-part exposition on how to go from being a business owner to creating real, passive income that works.

The first part is about your potential business.

The second part is all about setting up marketing and contracting services to make your money work for you and to access the services you need to expand… 

Start a Traditional or Brick and Mortar Business

Your passion, your talent, and your resources are unique to you- as is the way you deliver them to generate value for those you serve.

Now that you have the knowledge and the tools to advertise your business, let’s talk about building the bare bones of your company.

What follows are just ideas to get your creative juices flowing. We cannot tell you what the best business ideas for passive income will be for you will be, but we can point out some proven winners.

These are passive income ideas for college students, passive income ideas for creatives, and other simple passive cashflow ideas that can and do work for many people.

1. Laundry or Dry Cleaning Business

Laundry or Dry Cleaning Business

Most coin-op laundromats are essentially passive income units for the owner.

A single laundromat is not going to make a huge amount of money, but once you get it up, running, and staffed it is essentially passive.

You will have to supervise your staff, manage machine maintenance, and monitor each location.

Of course, you can use services like FlexJobs and TaskRabbit to outsource talent without having to do your own hiring.

If you’ve ever gone through the hiring process, you know how valuable that is.

2. Rental Properties

Once you get into buying and sprucing up real estate, you might turn around and rent out instead of selling them.

In order to turn that into passive income, you’ll have to advertise and automate your listings.

The days of fixing leaky faucets at 2 a.m. are long gone. Thanks to technology, investing in rental properties is generally hassle-free. You can use an app like Landlord Studio to automate your rent collection and accounting.

Alternatively, you can use Dealcheck to analyze the investment returns of a property so you don’t need to be an expert in investing to get started with your rental property business. 

3. Selling Antiques on eBay or Amazon

amazon ebay

If you love shopping for antiques, or if you have some old valuables in storage already, this could be your chance to get into business doing something you love.

You could spend your days looking for that perfect item to add to your inventory or you could outsource that part of the job.

Either way, it’s fun, and you’ll develop expertise in a very interesting subject.

That means, your career as an antique seller could turn into a second career as an antique appraiser.

See Related: 15 Top Jobs Like Amazon Flex [Earn Extra Gig Income]

4. Create an Affiliate Marketing Site

We already talked about how Leadpages makes it easy to become an affiliate. You can use their services to build on this idea or get started on your own.

The way it works is you host ads for your affiliate program partners on your site and they host your ads on theirs.

Each partner earns a commission on sales that come in via the links they host. 

You don’t even have to sell anything of your own. You could simply have a blog with ads for your affiliate partners. Check out these best affiliate programs to start earning money with affiliate marketing.

See Related: How Bloggers Make Money

5. Buy a Small Business

If you’ve got the cash or good credit to take out a loan, then buying a small business may suit you well.

Local car washes and laundromats will frequently fall on hard times and look for a buyer who can benefit where they haven’t.

Once you obtain a functioning facility, you can simply automate it using the tips in the first part of this guide. You might even keep the old owner in the loop as a consultant, but that’s up to you.

Websites make for a great small business and a way to make money online.

You can buy a website or app with Flippa in a matter of minutes. If you need more support about how to invest in a website, check my step by step guide to website investing.  

6. Invest in Real Estate

Buying troubled properties, fixing them up, and turning them over for a profit has always been a great way to make money.

Getting started is a bit like buying your own business because you have to come up with the cash for your first unit.

This can come in the form of savings or you could take out a loan.

Once you’ve got your first property you could automate the flipping process using FlexJobs to find the talent you need.

The good news is that there are people who can paint, spackle, carpet, and finish in just about any place where you might find yourself.

Check out DealCheck to help you analyze new rental property investment opportunities. 

See Related: Real Estate Investing: How People Are Doing This All Online

7. Create Online Courses

teachable logo

Do you have a special set of skills or knowledge? Almost everyone does!

Turn that knowledge into an online course. You can create videos that are evergreen for constant passive cash flow for life.

There are many online services that make it easy to get started, such as, Teachable and Thinkific. 

 See Related: Proven, Powerful Ways to Increase Your Income

8. Sell Stock Photos

Business Ideas for Passive Income

The need for online content is endless. Every website needs original images and the existing online image galleries and stock image services can never deliver enough.

You could fill a critical gap by making original images to sell online.

Pick a niche that isn’t being well served, photograph it, and sell it.

See Related: Best Passive Income Apps to Make Money

9. Build a Mobile App

Build a Mobile App

Mobile computing is exploding, and the growth trend doesn’t look like it will ever change.

If you have coding skills you may have the key to limitless simple passive cashflow.

Even if you don’t know a coding language, you could learn one in less than a year and get started. Even if your first app is only a minor seller, that’s still passive income for you.

If you make app-making your business, there’s a chance you’ll come up with the next big seller on Google Play.

10. Design T-Shirts or Mugs

Design Tshirt

If you have a successful YouTube page or are a big hitter on Instagram, creating shirt designs or mugs to let your audience show their love for you.

It is a great way to become independent of the restrictions imposed by the ad programs these sites make available.

The best thing about it is you can be fan-supported. That means the only people you owe your gratitude will be the ones who like you most!

It’s a win-win.

11. Rent Space on Your Vehicle for Ads

Hosting ad-space is the oldest passive income business model in the book.

You may have heard about the two college students who paid their way through school by selling ad space on their cars, and on their bodies in the form of t-shirts.

At the time it was revolutionary, and today it’s still unusual enough to catch people’s attention- and attention is what advertising is all about.

See Related: 12 Best Delivery Apps & Jobs

12. Create a Blog or Vlog

Blog or vlog

If you have the gift of language and something to say, why not express it in writing or video format?

You can easily make videos with your phone or computer, post them to a site like YouTube, and link them to your own website.

Once you start building your audience you can join an affiliate program, host ads, or sell products.

You can start a blog with Bluehost for as low as $3.95/month and you’ll even get a free domain name



Only $2.95/month

Bluehost is the ultimate hosting platform that will allow you to start a blog or website in a matter of minutes. You’ll get a FREE domain name when you sign up with my link It’s never been easier to build a brand.

Can’t decide between a blog or vlog? Read our thorough guide on blogging vs vlogging to see what’s best for you. 

In fact, you could make this and other items on our list into one multi-faceted business for massive, passive income!

Marketing & Outsourcing Business Opportunities for Passive Income

In order to take full advantage of the power of the Internet and make passive cash flow for life, you need to be highly visible online.

There are more tools available today for that than ever.

The following three services give you the opportunity to make a simple investment that will bring customers to you.

1. Learn to Outsource Work

The next step business idea for passive income is outsourcing. This means hiring contractors to perform the labor or leverage the tools involved in delivering your product or service.

Outsourcing is a key strategy for growing any business in today’s IT-rich business world.

It allows you to develop capabilities without building infrastructure or hiring your own workforce. 

Suppose, for example, you are in the business of selling vacuum cleaners.

You may have a warehouse full of them- either virtually or otherwise- and you need people to manage, store, promote, sell, and deliver them to your customers.

You could do all of that yourself, but of course, you can only do so much. You need a team. Those teams already exist – you just need to find and contract with them.

That’s where services like FlexJobs and SolidGigs come in.

Newsletter Templates

These services make finding the right contractor a simple matter of searching, selecting, and clicking. If you’ve never done outsourcing before, these services are the best way to start.

After you’ve gained some experience, you might start doing your own outsourcing, but these companies make it so easy that you will probably never need to.

See Related: Legit Ways to Earn Passive Income Blogging

2. Create an Automated Newsletter with Constant Contact

Newsletters are an important way for businesses to keep in touch with verified leads and returning customers.

The first thing you should know about Constant Contact is that they will walk you through the process of creating and disseminating a functional newsletter campaign.

You don’t need to master the entire process here, and you can easily go back and make changes at any time.

They also help with social media marketing and media buying, but that’s another topic.

Here’s a step-by-step overview.

Choose a Template on CONSTANT CONTACT

Constant Contact gives you a lot of choices here and it’s an important part of your branding effort.

Choose a template that feels right for your brand. If it doesn’t look perfect at first, you can always go back and select a different one.


Choose a Template on ConstantContact

Add links to articles, products, etc.

You want your audience to have easy access to your products, services, online content, or what have you.

To do this, simply copy and paste links into your newsletter content. An image, title, and description will be automatically generated.

Leadpages TemplatesWrite a Header and personalize your page

Your next step is to write a header for your newsletter and a brief description.

By now you should have a feel for the layout. Change it as you see fit and customize your product page with the same color as your header or a complimentary color.

Publish and Export it

Then, just click the big green “Newsletter” button to the right side of your dashboard. You’ll be able to make changes anytime.

See Related: How to Become a Content Creator

3. Start a Single-Page Affiliate Site or One-Page eCommerce Site with Leadpages

Affiliate programs are a great way to make money by helping other vendors to do the same.

Also, a single page eCommerce site is a highly effective business idea for passive income. It clears away all the barriers between your target demographic and the things they want. 

Leadpages helps you do either of these things, or both, easily through codeless websites, alert bars, pop-ups, and more. 

Use Leadpages’ Free Trial

The free trial is the best way to get to know Leadpages and master their material. 



Become a Leadpages Affiliate

To gain access to their affiliate program, you have to prove that you mean business.

Start by becoming a Pro Member… don’t worry, it’s a worthwhile investment. You’ll earn 30% commission on every sale that your status as an affiliate promotes.

You will also get priority email support, split testing access, and custom templates.

Build a LeadPages One-Page eCommerce Site

If you’ve followed all the steps up to this point, you should be getting excited because this is where the value really starts to develop for your business.

Leadpages makes it easy to do one of the smartest things online merchants are doing these days, building an easy-to-find site that is clean, neat, and right to the point- your products.

Leadpages makes it a breeze to publish user-friendly websites that online shoppers enjoy using.

The idea of a one-page eCommerce site is to remove all barriers between your customers and the things they want.

By streamlining their shopping time to a single point-and-click experience, you will make faster sales and earn customer loyalty.

Simply pick your template, and start filling it out. Leadpages takes care of the rest.

Leadpages Template 

See Related: Passive Income for College Students

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