Earning remote freelance income in 2020 has changed.
10 years ago, there were a lot more jobs, and a lot less freelancers fighting for them. Now, everyone calls themselves an “expert” and getting even mediocre remote freelance work has become nearly impossible if you don’t have a connection or some kind of foot in the door.
Still, I’ve been able to make more money in 2020 than ever before doing remote freelance work. These are the 5 best remote freelance streams for 2020. Setting them up isn’t not easy, but it’s actually pretty simple.
1. Write on Medium.com
Aside from a high-level column somewhere like Forbes or Huffington Post, Medium is still the #1 place to write online.
If you want to make freelance money through writing, you need to be posting on Medium. Since Medium pays their writers for their content, you can earn significant income each month from writing what you want to write, on your schedule, whenever you like.
To be realistic, it’s not going to be a lot of money at first — yes, some people can make $20,000/month(!) there, but most writers won’t. That’s OK; I made $40 total over the first 4.5 years of my writing. If you can make $50/month on Medium for now, that’s great.
Becoming successful on Medium isn’t about cracking some algorithm or finding the right trends; it’s about consistently producing quality content. That’s how you earn money, consistently and sustainably.
Start by posting 1–2 articles a week. Find some publications in your niche, and submit some pieces to them. Work your way up, and the income will come.
2. Coaching Packages
You might not think you’re a “coach,” but let me share a lesson I’ve learned after making money online for over 3 years:
People aren’t paying you for coaching, they’re paying you for a result.
If you can help get people from point A to point B, you can make money coaching.
Wherever you are in your journey, you know things others don’t. As best-selling author Derek Sivers once said, “What’s obvious to you is amazing to others.” You can get a lot of clients and teach them what you know, if you know how to sell your services.
In most cases, people don’t really care what credentials or certifications you have; they care if you can get them where they want to go. If you can give them that result, you can make a lot of money.
Don’t know where to start? Start small. Here’s the framework I used — 60 clients later, and it’s still working!
- Ask your readers to answer a 1-question survey: “What’s your #1 question about (your niche)?”
- Compile the answers and find the #1 core question
- Learn the answer to that question
- Create a sales page selling a coaching package that answers that #1 question
I did that, and in 3 months I had over 40 people buy my coaching package. (If you’re wondering how much to charge, $100/hour is a standard rate for a beginner).
In 2020, people aren’t going to universities or expensive companies to solve their problems — they’re going to people they trust, people who know how to solve their problem for an affordable price. People like you.
3. Automated Online Courses
I’ve made tremendous income from online courses, big and small, over the years.
You can make intensive cohort-type courses that you closely monitor throughout the curriculum, or you can make completely automated, self-led courses, making it one of the most effective passive income streams for your writing there is.
Don’t know where to start? Go back to coaching: what’s the #1 problem you can solve for your readers? Put your answers in a few videos, and provide as much additional value as you can:
- Free PDF’s
- Book recommendations
- Supporting articles
- Case studies
Just like coaching, people are paying you for a result. Share your knowledge and teach others how to do what you do. It’s great remote freelance income, and even better when it’s automated!
4. Amazon Affiliate Links
Amazon affiliate links are simple: Amazon pays you a cut of every sale your readers make for Amazon products you tell them about. You usually get around 5–10% of the sale.
These links are 100% passive income, and some of the lowest-hanging fruit in terms of income, and you can start making money today.
Amazon links are simple, cheap, and you can create your own account there in less than 5 minutes. It’s an excellent passive income stream you can insert into your writing, one any writer can use when they talk about a product in their niche.
You can also insert these links to all your other services — your content, your services, your coaching and courses and emails. It’s a great cherry on top to your other services.
5. Freelance Gigs
This one’s the most vague, because there’s just so much work you can do.
I do lots of freelance writing — I write for others, either ghostwriting their words for them, or posting exclusive content on their sites. I have friends who do video editing, audio editing, website design, you name it, all remotely.
A lot of people want this kind of work — high-paying remote freelance work doing interesting projects.
Here’s the first thing you need to understand about getting these types of roles: imagine if you want to sell your services, open a shop. Most people spend all their time trying to find customers — the rare times they find a potential customer, they don’t have a shop to sell their services!
First, make your “shop.” Create a website, a portfolio even, and a way for a potential client to pay you. Then focus on getting customers.
For me, most work comes to me now. I’ve spent enough time building my online presence that these customers contact me and ask to hire me.
For those of you who are starting out, you might need to start reaching out to these customers and ask for a sale. But you need a shop first.
Most people don’t really think it’s possible to make real money freelancing — not really. It’s hard to know where to start, what to create, how to get clients, and how to keep going when you don’t feel motivated.
That’s OK. Start small. Learn, experiment, study your craft.
Ready To Level-Up?
If you want to 10x your remote freelance writing income and work 100% from home, my free training on remote freelance writing will help.