025: How to Make Your First 1000 Dollars Online

Whether you haven't made your first dollar online yet OR you just want an extra boost for holiday money, pay off that vacation, end the year big and strong or hit the ground running for the beginning of next year, you're going to want to tune in and turn on to today's exciting, action-packed, and riveting program... topics covered:

  1. Offline Marketing (the fastest way to generate a few thousand bucks)
  2. Freelancing (often overlooked but easy and fun)
  3. Local Businesses (just 10 of these equals a full-time income with zero upkeep)
  4. Affiliate Marketing (this still works)
  5. Information Products (long term and scalable)

"How to Make Your First 1000 Dollars Online" FREE Report

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Be sure to listen to the podcast and leave your questions and comments below this post right now. Here are some ideas for you:

  • Option #1: how YOU earned your first $1000 online (tell me your quick story)
  • Option #2: which of these methods did you like the best
  • Option #3: which of these methods do you think you might use?

By the way, if you want to make this how you did (or want to) generate your first $1 or $1 million, or you don't even want to give me the amount, that works too. Just give me your quick 1-2 sentence micro-story in the comments.

Filed in: Archive 1: 2012-2016Podcast

Comments (23)

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  1. Bob M says:

    This kid hasn’t been able to make $0.19 let alone $1,000,00. It just seems some folks are just destined to stay broke…

  2. I reached $1,000 after 2 years with Adsense and affiliate marketing (mainly Adsense), then after that with Adsense, affiliate marketing and PLR/resell rights products, but it dropped off, taking another 3 years to cross $2,000, and now nearing $3,000.

    More recently I have had my own product and additional sales of affiliate and PLR/MRR products to my customer list. These days my Adsense income is negligible, largely because I neglected the sites and am no longer working in the area that got targetde traffic to the main earner (someone else’s ezine I used to edit in another language).

    Currently I am focusing on my own products (including PLR/RR also), building my list, and combined with affiliate marketing (including reviving/adding to my Amazon affiliate activities).

    Technically you could say I earn all my income online, because I work as a freelancer (translation [and proofreading], for businesses via agencies) with clients in another country I have never seen, and everything is done via the internet – receive the work, do the work, deliver the work, send the invoices and get paid!

    But I have never counted that as my “online” business/income, as it’s trading time for dollars instead of doing work once and profiting from it repeatedly (trading products instead of time, as Marlon says, whether my products or someone else’s as an affiliate).

  3. Wondering why the Gravatar didn’t show up there – one little “.” missing in the email, combination of the keyboard and slow computer/browser and/or connection, happening again even as I write this.

    Shows once again how little things can have a big effect, both negative but also positive.

    I’ll take positive any day 🙂

  4. Mark Butts says:

    Hi, Robert, I haven’t made my first thousand dollars yet, but I have set up a membership site and hoping to do well with that. In case anyone is interested in knowing the name of the site is Resell Rights Mania.

    God bless you and Merry Christmas!

  5. Howard says:

    Some feedback on things you mentioned in this podcast…

    Amazon FBA is more complicated than you imply.

    My wife and I have been doing FBA for a little over a year (she wrote an ebook on her experiences). FBA changes on a regular basis — a bit like eBay.

    After a year of FBA, we have replaced her income, but not mine. With the current month over month improvements in our efficiency and knowledge, we expect to replace my income as well. So, we are well past our first $1000.

    FBA takes considerable work and some up-front investment. That is a Good Thing. It weeds out about 98% of the wannabees.

    You mentioned ScanPower. We have used ScanPower, but no longer use it. There are cheaper alternatives — plus, since I’m a software developer myself, I am seriously considering writing a competitive app myself.

    Another thing you mentioned was GVoice. I have learned the hard way to NEVER depend on Google for anything important. Ever. Much cheaper to pay for service with a company where you are a customer, and not a product. I pay $20/month for VoIP service, which is *way* cheaper than having GVoice tell my customers that my number is out of service. I still don’t know for sure just how much business that cost me, but it was in the thousands of dollars.

    Even the “free” Google search has been deteriorating. I find that Bing gives better search results for nearly ever search I do these days. So does DuckDuckGo.

    Yelp is basically a protection racket. BTW, so is your local Better Business Bureau.

    As for affiliate marketing, using Amazon for your affiliate program will result in putting in a lot of work for very little money. I do have an Amazon affiliate account, and I do make some money with it. But it is certainly not where I would put the majority of my affiliate effort, because there are techniques for making a lot of money as an affiliate that simply can’t be used with Amazon. Simply driving traffic to somebody else’s site does *not* get you any recurring income. To make good money with affiliate marketing, you must build a list and have something in your back end.

    The last item (your own product) you mentioned is definitely the way to go. It’s also the most work. Which is a Good Thing (see above about FBA).

    AdWords: Oy, vey. Unless you have a (good) back end, AdWords is a really good way to Lose Money Fast. Lots of money, and really fast.

  6. Great discussion and resources..1000 per month is my goal before March 2014. i want that to be quick and plug into a top tier biz op that i can earn 1k commission. Put down a detail marketing plan with budget. i”m ready to kick butt in 2014. im bookmarking your site for my future learning platform to achieve my goal quickly . And already subscribe to iTunes. Happy Merry Christmas. God Bless

  7. Michael Finlayson says:

    Hi Rob,

    I have to admit that so far I have been gut wrenchingly awful when it comes to selling stuff off websites, but al being well that ill change. I have had, at least for me 🙂 a fantabulous year writing kindlebooks and by the end of the year I will have made around $6000. Next year will be more book, I’m in the process of getting magazine into the News Stand, and whether they like it or not I will be making money from my sites. Next year looks like being fun 🙂

    Have a very Merry Christmas and a Wild New Year,


  8. How did we make our first $1000 online ….

    We researched and found ourselves a mentor, created a free video bootcamp, learnt social media and how to use Google Adwords. Then we talked to people interested in starting a business online who came through to our free bootcamp funnel, built a relationship with them through email broadcasting and and sold them a coaching and training product teaching them how to make money online.

    The important ingredient apart from learning how to do this (the knowledge) was a really positive mindset about our ability to do this.

    Wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas and an awesome New Year

    Chris and Susan

  9. Marta says:

    I dabbled with adesense and affiliate products, never reached payout levels, so quickly changed to freelancing and that is way more profitable – at least I earn money straight away. I have been overthinking and procrastinating for the last couple years and I will finally get to launch my membership sites – fixed term – in January. I think my own product will not only make me some money, it will also increase orders for services, so win-win. I read your blog from beginning, keep up the good work!

  10. You are very correct about all five of these methods. However, when it comes to freelancing, in my opinion, there is some self-sacrifice involved.
    To continue, freelancing to me is like a whole different category altogether, involving making an income. I can say sooo much about this.

  11. Ruthie says:

    I made &102 last year from an 11 page Kindle book. It’s the “appetizer” for my memoir coming out next year. Oh, and a few bucks selling on EBay. Still haven’t made a thousand, though.

  12. I made my first $1000 online more than 16 years ago, so things have changed a lot since then. At that point we didn’t have a lot of courses telling us what to do or how to do it. We were all learning together.

    Since I love technology and it’s always come easy for me, I decided to teach a course to help others get started. I paid for a conference line (expensive back then!). Set up the registration page. Gave the course. Recorded it on audio cassette, then duplicated them one-by-one on my boom box. I designed the audio insert, which we printed and cut by hand. I bought a “large” quantity of cassettes (probably 24 at that time) and audio albums to put them into and we were in business!

    I took the same course “on the road” and did several full-day workshops, actually showing people how to do the things I was talking about – setting up a website (html only), writing articles and publishing them, building a list. Then naturally I sold my tape sets at the back of the room.

    As for payment, Paypal hadn’t been invented, so I got a merchant account through costco. But most payments were by check. Things moved much slower back then, so there was time to receive a check and ship out the cassettes. No one needed it immediately.

    We’ve come a long way! Now it’s faster. But there is so much information out there that people feel they need to know it all before they take a step. My advice – stop learning and start earning!

  13. Judy Jackson says:

    Earned my first $1000 with a $19.97 mo membership program for novel writers.

  14. Sara Young says:

    What a fun question!

    I made my first $1,000 online in 1994 before there even were websites!

    That was the year my first son was born and I wanted to stay home with him. So I looked online for work and found a statistics professor who was looking for help.

    I emailed him and worked for him at an hourly rate until I moved on to creating my own sites…

  15. Alexia92146 says:

    Cool post. It’s interesting to read everyone’s stories here. I made my first $1,000 on Ebay. I started thifting at my local Goodwill. I fixing up garments that needed work, polished knick knacks I thought were neat, and re-sold them for a profit. I did this for about 2 years, and it was a nice little side project for me.

  16. Wayne Brooks says:

    Hey Robert,
    Great question. I made my first thousand dollars online about 10 years ago with affiliate marketing and membership sites, and have been hooked ever since.

  17. RJ Peters says:

    Wow, some really interesting stories. I started out with a book in 1998, but couldn’t afford a traditional publishing experience. There were ebooks, but I couldn’t afford to get Adobe’s pdf maker. So, I wrote it, printed it on my inkjet, had it reproduced at a copy shop, inserted all 115 pages into 3-ring binders, and sold them from my first website, hand coded by me as learning html came easy for me. With no PayPal and couldn’t afford a merchant account, I just took checks by mail and then shipped out the books. Made just about $1,000 that year. Then I wrote another book, found someone to help me make a pdf, gave it away on Mark Hendricks’ first Christmas giveaway. It was popular enough, that I made another website and sold it through Clickbank after the holidays. Made over $3,000 that year. PayPal either wasn’t around yet, or it was new and not to be trusted. Now I use them all the time, of course.
    So here I am, 15 years down the rat hole and still not making the headway I had hoped for by now. I will have to follow Jeanette’s advice and stop learning and start earning. I’m a “professional webinar attendee.”
    Oh yeah, totally agree with Howard. Better Business Bureau is just a protection racket. I lost my shirt to an online company that had a high rating with them, but when I complained about non-delivery of their product and they didn’t respond, I put it on a scam report site. They won, because BBB stood by them, and not me, since I’m not a “member.” And all that takes is buying in to it.
    Anyway, as you can see, this can be hard work and not everyone gets lucky. I’m pursuing Kindle publishing now. I love writing, but I’ve learned enough now to see that I need to understand (and use!) the marketing process more and not worry about writing the perfect novel.

  18. Ron says:

    I made my first $1000 around 2000 – 2001 being a moderator for a program that never really got off the ground. I’ve followed Robert’s online career since the late 90’s, I just wish I would have paid more attention, followed his advice and took action back then!

  19. Steve says:

    I made some nice money with my nichecreator software back in 2005 when the adsense (spam) sites were all the rage – I had literally millions of pages indexed in google.

    I made the mistake of releasing my software with my adsense account as the default one – and got banned (for life it seems) by google from adsense because of click fraud (by idiots who didn’t even set it up to c lick on their own accounts!).

    It was a big emotional blow to see my adsense income go from $1000+ a day to zero.

    And then because I had made the mistake of selling my software for a one time fee instead of ongoing membership access, and giving away the easy to modify php source with the software, my code starting showing up in others’ much cheaper and even free software packages. I was even accused of stealing from open source projects like YACG and selling it because my software supported their modules, and some of my custom modules ended up getting put into their software.

    So, I let it get me down and haven’t really made steady income (other than freelancing) since then.

    Lessons learned but still to be acted on (will act on them these next few months):

    1. if you have your own product, make it a membership/recurring income model.
    2. don’t rely on any one provider/monetizer (like google/adsense)
    3. don’t give away your source code with your product (for me, I should have been selling the service, not the code that created the service.)
    4. Building a list is only worthwhile if you keep up a relationship with it.
    5. don’t quit just because there are setbacks!

  20. Jeff Robinson says:

    I haven’t made 1,000 online yet but thanks to your podcast I see that I haven’t been doing anything right! I have just been with the set it and forget it attitude and you have shown me I need to be a little more proactive or else the money wont come in. I will use all your suggestions and post here once I make that first 1,000! Thanks again!

  21. Hmmm.

    A) Sold x 4 of my websites that I’d built up over the years with great original content etc. From about 1-2 years back they were pummeled by Google, and Adsense dropped so I sold them asap. About $5000 or so.

    B) Created info products, sales letter, good domain etc in photography niche, emailed the opt ins, sold ebooks for months. $Thousands.

    But things like that have an ebb and flow, info products need updating, the web changes, social media, you get bored of it, etc…

    So I’m re-working those sites again but likely focus on a membership site approach where ALL the content is within the membership site… easily updated, fresh, current, community, different m’bership levels etc

    But honestly, it’s not that difficult to create an information product/video/audio… is it? Find out what your market wants/needs/problems they have/how you solve it, and interview expert/s. Record interview into audio/pdf/create video, set up opt-in or simple website etc etc

    Thanks :o) M

  22. Juan Lee says:

    I made my first $1000 4 months ago from admob from my Google Play account. I hosted some android apps on Google Play and it generates enough revenue that it can pays my all bills for the month. The other source of income is free-lancing which is not stable but it is going to my savings for future 🙂

  23. shubham says:

    I made my first $1000 in a time frame of May to October by following a recurring consultant model which several readers have suggested here & i charged my client x $ per month instead of setting website completely at their end. Its a mess as you have to manage low level server detailas (usually VPS in my case) along with open source control panel like Vesta cp. I liked the marketing side & i am looking forward to market my own product based on recurring fee model.

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