Answers to most problems can be googled.
Yet I still get wild questions on Twitter about making money online, such as “where do I start?” It makes no sense. Everyone reading this is armed with google search engines.
Let’s eliminate this embarrassing excuse forever.
Stripe is free
If you sell products or services on the internet then Stripe is how you’ll get paid. Not because you want to use them. Nope. But because you have to.
All the major tech platforms and marketplaces use Stripe — and they don’t offer a second option. Why? There’s this false belief that Stripe is easy to use and all the other options are too hard to use.
This hasn’t been true for years.
Companies like Tipalti, Transferwise, and Payoneer are as good, if not better, than Stripe. Stripe is expensive for what it is. Still, if you want to make money online it’s going to be part of your tech stack.
It’s free to set up and have an account. You only pay fees when you do a transaction. And a transaction equals validation that what you’re doing online has value.
Notion is free
Notion is one of the most powerful productivity apps on the planet.
You can use it as a wiki or even a website. You can endlessly customize it if you like to tinker. Or you can buy Notion templates from someone like Easlo on Twitter and save your time.
Once you get good at Notion you’ll see it’s a way to document systems.
It starts with systems to run your life — to-do lists, planners, calendars, reminders. But then it can be used to run systems for an online business too.
If you ever want to outsource any of your work to a virtual assistant or freelancer you’ll need systems. Notion is where you document your systems and give access to those who will need to copy them.
Twitter is free
Twitter is the best one on this list.
I love Twitter because it connects my ideas to millions of people. Most online businesses use the lean startup principles. Basically, you build in public and iterate as you go.
Done is better than perfect.
Twitter lets you share ideas and collect data. This is crucial if you run an online business. Why? Online businesses are built on content — video, audio, writing, illustrations, and newsletters.
If you publish and pray you’ll have no clue what has value and what doesn’t.
It still blows my mind that Twitter is free. I’m focusing more of my attention there because it’s one of the few social media apps that still have the viral loop built-in.
That means if you’re a nobody and your content is good, it’s easy for it to get traction and go viral.
One viral idea can become an entire online business. Read that again.
Discord is free
The modern online business is built off the back of a community.
In web3 and crypto land community is everything. Community is what will kill Web2 and the Mark Zuckerberg dictatorship monopoly model. So if community is important, you need a place to host it.
That can’t be done on social media because you won’t own your community. The best option is a group chap app.
Amongst all the options Discord is the best. The reason is automation. You can automate basic functions like welcome messages and community rules.
Build an online audience then funnel them into a group chat app. It’s where all the value lies for an online business.
Calendly is free
In corporate I used to do the calendar dance.
I’d go back and forth with prospects and internal stakeholders to get time in their diary. Or worse, when I dealt with senior leaders I’d have to deal with their poor, overworked personal assistant.
It made me sad that these kind people were essentially trophy badges for senior leaders to flash around and say “ohhh, Roger, contact my PA to get in my busy calendar so we can sit down and sip 1906 red wine chappy.”
Calendly is a free tool that unlocks calendars. You can send a link to anyone you want and it’ll show when you’re free. Then they can find a time and schedule a time. You can also leave notes on what the catchup is about.
The best part is if you need to reschedule a meeting you don’t need to deal with the embarrassment of contacting the other person. You simply go to the Calendly meeting, click reschedule, and choose a new time. No problemo.
Running an online business means building real human relationships. Calendly speeds up the process and allows you to meet more people.
People lead to opportunities you could have only dreamt of a year ago.
Revue is free
Revue lets you send a free newsletter.
They have many competitors that are free as well. Newsletters are how you build a superfan experience with an online audience. Without regular engagement people will forget what you do online to earn a living.
A newsletter isn’t a place to sell too hard though. It’s a place to deepen trust through sharing curated content from yourself and other creators you love.
Start a newsletter for free. Send it weekly for a year. Watch it change your life.
Gumroad is free
Messing around with websites, shopping carts, payments — can be a giant pain in the butt.
Gumroad is a place you can sell digital products/services with no friction. You just open an account, put your products or offer on there for sale, then link to your Gumroad page on social media. Now you have a quick way to test products and services.
They have some discoverability too. So Gumroad users can search for keywords related to what you do and find your page.
Crowdsourced $0 tools
The list above has the tools I like. But my Twitter audience offered these kickass solutions as a bonus.
- Free Dropbox for storing all your files
- Free Canva for design and illustrations
- Free Figma for graphics editing and user interface app design
- Free Youtube for publishing videos and promoting affiliate links
- Free Carrd for a one-page website you can use as a link-in-bio for your social media accounts
- Free Reddit to find communities and do research (Reddit searches apparently are more popular than google because they’re typically honest and less manipulated than an SEO google search)
What this means for you
There’s no excuse to *not* make money online. You can now make money after hours for $0. Give it a go.
The first $20 you make will be a brain-changer. Suddenly your psychology shifts and you’ll think “hmmm … this is possible for me.”
This article is for informational purposes only, it should not be considered financial, tax or legal advice. Consult a financial professional before making any major financial decisions.