10 Multiple Income Streams You Can Create

by Heather Allard on March 13, 2012

multiple income streams

I remember the first time I heard about “multiple income streams”. It was back in 2005 after I had launched my baby blanket business.

I had set up shop on my website and planned to sell Swaddleaze and Blankeaze from there. My best friend said, “Are you going to sell them in gift shops and boutiques, you know, at wholesale?”.

Honestly, I had never heard of wholesaling before. I didn’t even know it was an option.

I thought about it, researched it a bit and decided that selling my products at both retail and wholesale would be an awesome way to create two streams of income. Ka-ching.

Having more than one stream of income not only increases your profit faster, it also increases your security.

Because when you have multiple streams of income, you don’t have to panic when business is slow or work from a big client dries up or you just need some extra cash.

And the best part about multiple streams of income? Every business owner can create them, whether you’re a blogger, product seller or service provider.

Here are 10 streams of income you can create:

1. Wholesale your product – If you only sell your product at retail, consider branching out into the world of wholesaling. Wholesaling is the sale of your goods, usually in large quantity at lower prices, to a retailer for resale purposes. To learn more about wholesaling and how to do it, check out Get Retail Ready.

2. Retail your product – Do you currently only sell your product at wholesale? Then consider selling it at retail. You can set up your own online store quickly and easily or sell on sites like Amazon, eBay and etsy.

3. Create an affiliate program for your product – You can reach more customers and add a nice (passive!) income stream by recruiting affiliates to sell your product for you.

Affiliate programs can be created for physical products (like blankets, blenders or blazers) or digital products (like e-books, audio files or video tutorials) using sites like e-Junkie, Digital Delivery App or Share-A-Sale.

4. Write an e-book – Do you have knowledge, information or experience in a particular area that you could share with others? Then write an e-book and sell it. Not sure how to write and sell an e-book? Check out ebook Evolution from Kelly Kingman.

5. Offer consulting - Share your knowledge, experience and information by consulting with people one-on-one. For example, if you’re a successful graphic designer, you can teach new designers how to set up their website, price their packages, buy the software, bill clients, create a portfolio, etc.

6. Teach a class – Like consulting, teaching a class allows you to share your knowledge, experience and information with others, but on a larger scale. You can teach classes locally or offer them online using a cool Internet-based “classroom” like Instant Teleseminar.

7. Speak – Are you great on stage? Then launch a speaking career and another stream of income. You can speak at conferences, trade shows and sales meetings and earn money doing it. Learn how from Chris Brogan, speaker extraordinaire, right here.

8. Become an affiliate - If you have a blog or website, you can join affiliate programs and set up affiliate links to different products and services on the web. When someone signs up through your affiliate link, you get a small cut of their advertising revenue. That can add up if you get a lot of affiliate sales, and you don’t have to do any of the work to produce physical and digital products. Read how Glen Allsop earns thousands each month through affiliate marketing.

9. Sell newsletter subscriptions – Again, if you have knowledge, experience or information to share, you can profit from it by writing a newsletter and charging a subscription fee for it. Once you build up your subscribers, you can make a nice chunk of change from it. Last January, Chris Brogan started a weekly newsletter called Blog Topics. He charges $9.97 per month and now has 480 subscribers. You do the math.

10. Sell advertising space – Do you have great traffic on your website or blog? Have tons of newsletter readers or podcast listeners? Then sell advertising. Learn more about selling advertising in Anna Viele’s awesome free ebook.

So, what income streams are you going to add to your business? Tell us in the comments.

Photo by Only Alice

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{ 42 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Cosmetics by MRS. February 3, 2014 at 5:10 pm

Thank you Heather, I will apply your advice to my make-up line business.

http://www.mrscosmetics.com/

http://www.mrscosmetics.com/

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2 pemmy64 December 27, 2013 at 5:19 pm

Thanks for the information. I was in search of multi income streaming ideas and now I have a few more useful leads! Thank you for sharing! XXO

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3 WAHMJessica August 31, 2012 at 12:49 pm

This is what I am trying to do. I’m trying to build up my website so that I can eventually sell ad space on it and I’ve been doing a little bit of affiliate work too.

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4 Neil Keleher June 14, 2012 at 2:11 am

Hi Heather, thanks for all those great suggestions. Still processing it all.

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5 CAM May 1, 2012 at 2:54 pm

I don’t stock inventory. I don’t host parties. I’ve done it all, which includes selling candles, vacations, makeup and weight loss products but they’ve never allowed me to make the money that I do now. I don’t even have to recruit people. I DO help people make money their very first day. I also help people build a full-time income from home doing part-time work. Plus, it doesn’t even cost anything to get started! http://www.FreeBigCash.com

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6 AmandaEvans May 1, 2012 at 2:38 pm

Awesome post! Great ideas some I knew others, I had not thought of before! Thanks for the great info :)

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7 Liz March 14, 2012 at 5:02 pm

Hey Heather,

Security is a big deal when running your own business, so monetizing as much as you possibly can is going to help with that.

These are all certainly monetization methods that include something for everyone. In fact I use several of them myself :-)

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8 Heather Allard March 15, 2012 at 11:09 am

:) Thanks for stopping by, Liz.
Heather

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9 Crystal March 4, 2012 at 7:15 pm

I love teaching multiple income streams to small business owners and start-ups. I was able to stay at home with my kids and run my business after I discovered how to create more income streams.. It change my life…I guess now you could say I’m a little obsessed with showing others how to do it! :)

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10 Gary January 28, 2012 at 8:21 am

Thanks so much for all the tips! I have a lot of websites that i have been looking to make money with, most of the time i am choosing a highly competetive niche like SEO or Hosting etc, thats what I do for a living. Using your tips though I will go down the route of CPA, I am already with CB and Amazon.

I tried Ebay associates, they keep declining for some weird reason.

Thanks again.

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11 Pam Sweeney January 18, 2012 at 7:50 am

Love all of your tips. I am a jewelry designer and I am looking for sales rep’s in my industry. Do you have any suggestions of where to find some?
Thanks

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12 Heather Allard January 28, 2012 at 8:47 am

Hi Pam,
Check out http://giftrepsandy.com/sales-rep-matching-services/. Sandy might have some resources for you. :)

Heather

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13 Tiffany January 16, 2012 at 11:34 pm

Some great ideas here, thank you! I am interested in setting up an affiliate program for the products we sell but after looking at ShareASale, I found the set up fee to be $550 which is significantly higher than my small business can commit to for trying out affiliate marketing. Do you know of other programs that have a lower fee structure?

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14 Heather Allard January 17, 2012 at 8:19 am

Hey Tiffany! Have you tried Commission Junction? I’m not sure what their fees are but it’s another option worth checking out.

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15 Heather | Mom 4 Life May 8, 2012 at 9:07 pm

I looked into Commission Junction pretty closely a few years ago and the fees were more than I could swallow. it seems to be set up for the very “big” guys. However, it is possible they have modified their structure sense then.

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16 Heather Allard May 9, 2012 at 10:51 am

Have you checked into ShareASale, Heather?

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17 Sherry December 31, 2011 at 5:26 am

You have some really good info on your site. I have been struggling at this for years now but am not giving up on my dream. I currently sell on Etsy and Ebay…still really trying to find my niche. What I currently have, is good for gifts but seems not as much for repeat customers and so I did well at xmas…and now nothing. And before christmas nothing..especially on Etsy. So now I think Im moving onto a new product AGAIN. I should be blogging about this. I mean my experiences and the things I come up with…entertaining!
So I am gonna utilize your info as soon as I get my niche! :(

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18 erinmgiles November 10, 2011 at 8:39 pm

Thanks so much Heather, such a great post, you got me thinking:)!!

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19 Angela Keller November 8, 2011 at 10:38 am

I am already wholesaling and retailing which is a great combination and has kept my business going. Because my products are handmade, I think something like an affiliate program would be difficult. But I have thought of teaching a class. Thanks for the ideas.

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20 kiran chikkala October 22, 2011 at 7:40 am

Thanks for giving this great information. It’s really useful.

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21 Shelly October 18, 2011 at 12:31 pm

Loved the info in this post! Thank you so much for all these great ideas. I’m already doing some of them, but you’ve really planted some seeds in my mind. I appreciate you!

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22 Faye Counts October 15, 2011 at 8:16 pm

Thank you for the timely advice. I’m jumping into the affiliate arena (hopefully) this month. I just needed a nudge.

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23 YUMMommy October 14, 2011 at 8:50 pm

I’ve added ad space, became an affiliate and done sponsored posts. Working on adding public speaking and an ebook to the mix.

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24 Optimistic Mom September 27, 2011 at 7:19 am

Very good information! I really need to start considering some of the options that you have listed. I think the toughest part is getting started!

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25 Amy Lynn Andrews August 26, 2011 at 7:17 pm

Hi Heather, great ideas! I couldn’t agree with you more about multiple income streams. I’ve dabbled in most of the online streams you mention, but do have an idea for a “real life” (?) product. Manufacturing, wholesaling, etc. makes my head spin though!

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26 Susan Murphy (@suzemuse) August 14, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Good ideas here! Multiple Streams of Income | The Mogul Mom http://t.co/o6m2Enx

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27 Sandra July 13, 2011 at 1:52 pm

This is great. You are truly an inspiration. I can feel that things are so helpful, I just need a good shove in the butt to get moving.

Thank you!!
S

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28 Karen Ashwill May 31, 2011 at 6:43 am

Hi Heather,
Thanks for this article – I’m going to start researching affiliate marketing right now. Hopefully I can get the word out about Swim Shell cover-ups before the darn summer is over!
Karen

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29 Heather Allard May 31, 2011 at 8:59 am

You’re welcome, Karen. :) Let me know how it goes!

Heather

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30 Sarah May 30, 2011 at 10:36 pm

Thinking of doing some revising of the things I do on-line and this was SO timely. A HUGE thank you from me!

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31 Heather Allard May 31, 2011 at 8:57 am

A huge you’re welcome. :)

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32 Veronica May 30, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Heather,Thank you for posted a very informative article.keep it up

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33 Veronica May 30, 2011 at 1:52 pm

You’re such a wonderful mom entrepreneur. Thanks for the information. I’m gonna jump to number 3 and 9 as I was looking for message like this to push me. Again thank you and am gonna inbox you to find more information

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34 Shajjad May 30, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Hi heathall,
I am landed here through viperchill.
I am happy to get you. My wife is thinking to leave her job, but don’t have any plan for what to next. So I am trying to involve her in online marketing.
Now this will be easier for me to teach her online marketing strategy using your blog content.
Thanks so much for your great content.

Shajjad

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35 Michele May 30, 2011 at 1:07 pm

Hi Heather!
I’ve decided to jump on the Home-Party a.k.a. Trunk Show bandwagon. Providing people the opportunity to shop in the comfort of their homes, amongst their friends, while “earning” free product can’t be a bad thing. I’m in the process of planning marketing and hostess incentive programs now.

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36 Heather Allard May 30, 2011 at 1:14 pm

Awesome, Michele! Wishing you much success!

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37 Alex | Perfecting Dad May 30, 2011 at 11:41 am

Sorry, didn’t mean “only or product” meant “online or product”.

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38 Sue May 30, 2011 at 11:37 am

This is very encouraging, Heather. Thank you. Even though I KNOW all this, it’s good to be reminded. We just have to keep moving forward.

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39 Alex | Perfecting Dad May 30, 2011 at 11:30 am

Heather, just came to this site from Viperchill. I’m a fairly successful “real-world” entrepreneur (All-In: How I Made $800,000 in a Lifetime and $15,000 Last Week) but I’ve yet to make my mark in the only or product world. I hesitate to go totally online, but I browsed around your site a bit to find that you made your start with physical products. Do you have a sitemap or something that can help me get started with physical products — I have some ideas and I know the general process, but what about the details like how to find manufacturing for a good price, how to mark up, how to manage inventory, etc? Thanks.

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40 Heather Allard May 30, 2011 at 11:52 am

Hey Alex!

Yep, I started in the physical products world and then moved to the online products world. LOL.

Are you making an apparel product? If so, email me at heather [at] themogulmom [dot] com and I’d be happy to share some great contacts with you!

Here’s an article on costing: http://www.themogulmom.com/2009/11/how-to-effectively-cost-your-product/.

As far as managing inventory, I started out storing mine in my basement and keeping track of it manually. LOL. Then, when my wholesale business picked up, I hired a fulfillment center to handle inventory/shipping for me. It was awesome. :)

Hope this helps!
Heather

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41 Amy McArthur May 30, 2011 at 11:24 am

Thanks, Heather, for the great info! I am in the process of creating an affiliate program as well as writing an ebook. I’ll have to check out the ebook Evolution! :)

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42 Heather Allard May 30, 2011 at 11:47 am

Ooh, awesome Amy! Can’t wait to see it! :)

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