The Internet is full of video tutorials, courses, and blog posts detailing how to make passive income online.
Most passive income methods involve investments, affiliate marketing, or selling physical or digital products.
While there is real money to be made using passive methods, unfortunately the majority of these methods require membership in affiliate programs or websites that do not admit minors under the age of 18.
What is passive income?
Passive income is basically money you make from previous assets or projects or for doing something you already do. It often requires an upfront investment of your time or money to begin earning passive income.
However, after the initial work, your original investment of time or money continues to produce cash with minimum upkeep.
Passive income allows you to make money even when you aren’t actively doing any work. Some examples would be digital sales from an Etsy store, royalties from e-book sales, or commissions from Amazon affiliate sales.
Below are 5 ways teenagers can make passive income online:
1. GPT Referral Programs
GPT (Get-Paid-To) sites are websites that pay their users to complete surveys and other easy tasks (More about GPT sites).
Earnings are given in points, which can be used to redeem via gift card (including Visa and Amazon), Paypal cash, and sometimes even cryptocurrency like Bitcoin.
Some examples of GPT sites that accept users age 13+ are Swagbucks, iRazoo, and Grabpoints (for iRazoo, use code 8H4Q52 for extra points!).
Most GPT sites have referral programs that offer users points or a percentage of their referrals earnings. You gain referrals when a user signs up after clicking on your assigned referral link.
One example is Swagbucks, which gives their users 10% of all referrals lifetime earnings plus $3 for each referral who earns $3 in the same month they signed up.
The easiest way to gain referrals is by inviting your friends or posting your link on social media. Another method is creating a blog post about the site or about an aspect of it.
I was also able to recruit a lot of Swagbucks referrals by offering a special role on one of my Discord servers in return for signing up.
2. Creating and selling E-books
Creating and selling E-books for Amazon Kindle is another way for teenagers to make money online.
Dan Brock, a successful Youtuber who specializes in affiliate marketing, says that he once met a 16 year old author who makes $1000 a day publishing E-books in the mystery genre!
Writing a book takes a lot of work, but if you write quality material and market it correctly, you can make a decent amount of passive income online by publishing your books through Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing space.
While you won’t make money immediately with this, this can be a great way to build up passive income overtime through book royalties.
You can find a step-by-step guide on how to do this here.
For those of you who do NOT enjoy the idea of spending a ton of time writing a book, you can still make money by Publishing Journals on KDP and marking them as a paperback.
A Journal takes a lot less time to create than a regular fiction or non-fiction E-book, although you may earn lower commissions.
The Italian Internet marketer Alessandro Zamboni has a fantastic course that teaches you how to create and sell journals on Amazon and other websites online, as well as a list of niche ideas and marketing techniques.
3. Playing videos
While not quite as lucrative, you can also make passive income by playing videos on your PC or mobile device.
Many apps and GPT sites offer paid videos, which can often be played in the background while you do other tasks. There are often ads between videos as well.
You won’t get rich using this method, although you can still make some extra money doing this.
Playing Swagbucks videos or Smores.tv videos on GPT sites is a great way to get started.
My favorite site is probably Quickrewards.net, which has Smores.tv videos from a variety of genres including food, app trailers, and more. Quickrewards generally offers 1 cent per 4 ads played, and allows you to cash out as low as 1 cent for Paypal cash.
They also feature a variety of gift cards, although sites like Swagbucks or Grabpoints have a much larger selection.
Quickrewards has never failed to pay me whenever I requested payment. Grabpoints and iRazoo also feature Smores.tv videos.
4. Searching the Internet
It is also possible to earn passive income by searching the Internet!
While Google is convenient and quite reliable, you must admit they don’t pay you to use their platform.
If you are willing to settle for Yahoo results for your default searches in return for earning $3-4 per month, I suggest making the Swagbucks, InboxDollars, or Sendearnings search engine your default and let your earnings pile up over time.
Since you already search the Internet, swapping search engines will easily get you some extra money over time. Unfortunately, this method is not scaleable, but it can still get you a bit of extra cash without much of a problem.
With Swagbucks, you will be notified if you received a reward for your search results. Make sure to solve the captcha to get your pay.
You will accumulate cash or points that you can redeem for a Gift card of your choice.
Check out my article The Top 7 Websites that Pay you to Search the Web in 2019 [Paypal or Gift Card] for more information about making money online by searching the web.
Another way to make passive income is by getting cashback for shopping.
If you shop online, you can easily save up to 10% on most of your purchases through cashback sites like Ebates.com, Swagbucks,com, or MrRebates.com.
Cashback sites make their money by driving traffic to their partner stores, who pay the cashback sites a commission in return.
To save money, simply click on the store you wish to shop at on the cashback site you are using, then shop as usual.
Once you purchase your items, the cashback site will process your order and provide the funds in your account. You can cashout through a gift card or through Paypal.
Most cashback sites also have referral programs, some of which pay quite well. For example, Ebates.com gives new users a $10 bonus if they spend $25 when shopping through their partner links while awarding the referring user $25.
While most passive income sources are unavailable to teenagers under the age of 18, it is still possible to do so through GPT and cashback sites like Swagbucks or by developing long term products like Kindle E-books, Journals, or blog posts including referral links.
While these are just some possibilities to make passive income online, there are many other methods, both online and offline, available to young entrepreneurs.
For example, check out Steve Cooper’s blog for 10 ways to make passive income as a kid, or Lashay H.’s Best 30 online jobs for teens.
If you are interested in learning about even more ways to make money online, click the follow button in the top right hand section of the site. Thank you for reading!
Thanks for including GrabPoints! GrabPoints is the highest-paying survey site on the internet! Here’s a comparison of rewards on our site vs others: