How to Use Your Research and Writing Skills to Earn a Living Online


If you have a skill in research and writing – perhaps from an education in the humanities, or just from personal interest – then I want to share some information with you that you may not already be aware of.

People who have a background in subjects such as English, fine arts, or the social sciences are often faced with limited job opportunities and the prospect of low income careers.  I want to present to you a way of using your specialized skills to earn money online – possibly even a lot of money – working in the field of intellectual distribution.  Best of all this opportunity allows you to work for yourself.

The main activities involved in intellectual distribution online involve:

  1. Creating a website about a topic that interests you
  2. Promoting it

Both these activities require skills in research and in writing.  Surprisingly, they don’t require technical knowledge or programming skills.  This is what gives you a huge advantage.  If you are able to write then you already have what it takes to succeed online.

What is involved in creating a website?

Setting up a professional looking website can be done in an evening.  Writing the content for a website is an ongoing activity but can easily be done with only a few hours a week.

When you create your own website you have full control over what it is about.  You can pick a topic that interests you and write what you want.  You have the ability to explore issues that you find interesting and you can express them how you want to your readers.  You are in full creative control.  This allows you to learn about things that are interesting to you by researching and writing about them.

How to promote your website

There are many ways to promote your website.  For someone with a skill in writing I recommend your primary strategy to be article marketing.  Article marketing involves writing short articles (300-500 words) and submitting them to article directories.  This helps people find you in the search engines.  This approach involves lots of writing – ideally one or two articles a day.  If you can write fast (or want to learn how to) then this is the way to go.

The benefits of article writing are:

  • It is free
  • It is easy to do
  • It provides a stable, long term, source of traffic to your website
  • It makes your website more visible in the search engines

There are other techniques for promoting your website such as PPC (pay per click).  This involves running ads online.  This is also a very effective method of getting visitors to your website but it costs money and can be costly if you are inexperienced.

Where does the money come from?

When you have a website which is receiving traffic there are several ways to earn money.  The two most popular, which can both be done at the same time, are:

  1. Affiliate marketing: this involves providing a product to your visitors.  This isn’t necessarily a product that you create – there are many products available through affiliate programs that you can choose from.  The product, of course, should be relevant to the content of your website and of interest to your visitors.  When a sale is made, you make a commission.  Note that all the technical details are handled by the seller of the product – not by you.
  2. Provide advertising: this technique is simple but generally earns less money.  You can place ads on your website (such as Google ads).  When someone clicks on your ad you make some money.  This is very simple to set up and the advertising company (such as Google) takes care of all the details.

Let look at an example.  If you have a website on the topic of “improving your writing skills” you can provide tips and techniques about writing.  You would also provide links that connect your readers to relevant products – say a product on how to get published or how to write a screenplay.  If one of your visitors is interested in the product and purchases it you make some money.

Taking it to the next level

There are still more ways you can use your website to earn even more money.

Mailing lists: One of the most profitable techniques websites use is having a mailing list.  People register on your website for your mailing list.  You then send regular emails to your list typically providing valuable information that isn’t necessarily on your website (more opportunity to use your writing skills).  You can also recommend relevant products to your mailing list that you think would be of interest to them.

E-Books: Writing your own e-books is a great asset to your website.  People often give away an e-book to encourage people to sign up to their mailing list.  You can also sell your e-books to your visitors to generate even more income.  The internet thrives on information.  If you can research a topic and write an e-book you have an advantage over many other internet marketers.

Your own product: Once you have an understanding of how affiliate marketing works you can offer your own products (like your e-books) through an affiliate program.  This allows other people to promote your product and increases the number of sales which translates into even more profit.

And the catch is …

To be honest the expenses involved in doing all this is relatively low – most of this just involves time, but it can easily be done in your spare time (that’s how I do it).  If you have good writing skills you are already ahead of the game.

If this is something that interests you I recommend you take a course in internet marketing.  I highly recommend Wealthy Affiliate University – they have everything you need to know and more.  You can visit their website for pricing information (I don’t want to put it here because it changes from time to time).

Other costs that you may have to incur are buying a domain name (about $10 a year), hosting (free if you are a member of Wealthy Affiliate), and a mailing list manager if you choose to have one (varies from company to company but is typically around $20 a month).

Remember – if you create your website properly it will be profitable which will offset all these costs and provide you with a nice steady stream of income.  Many internet marketers earn a full time living doing just what I’ve described here.  There are also those who earn an obscene amount of money on a daily basis.  How much you earn is up to you and how much effort you want to put in.

How to get started

Feel free to look around this website for more information related to making money online.

The Wealthy Affiliate University website has some excellent information.  You can also check out their blog.

Think about how you could use your writing and research skills to create the kind of website that you would like to have.  It is generally good to focus in on a specific niche.

Apart from that there isn’t much else.  Online marketing isn’t an overly complicated task.  The opportunity lies in taking action and sticking with it over time.

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