Are you unhappy with your current salary or contract rate?

If so, then you should look at creating extra money from side projects.

I have been doing side projects for many years now that have paid for the latest tech and luxurious holidays.

They have been fun, improved my current skills and taught me new ones.

To help you get started, I am going to show you four extra income streams that I have used and been successful with.

Write you own product

This is exactly what I did in 2002 when I took a career break after my daughter was born.

I had never developed a web application, so started to learn about

I wanted to write something people needed and would buy, so I hung out in online marketing forums.

One of the marketers told me how he did surveys via web forms, but found it hard work collating all the results by hand. He also wanted a solution that would cost $50 rather than the $900+ that Zoomerang were charging at the time.

I put a prototype together in a week and sent him a link. Over the following months, I continued to add more features that he needed.

When the product was finally ready, we agreed a joint venture. He created the marketing materials and sold the product to his network for a percentage of the sales.

OneMinutePoll was a great success and I have made a good side income from it ever since. I also learnt how to write a web application and have just upgraded it using MVC and renamed it to SwiftSay.

Find an online audience, understand their problems and then create and sell them a solution.


Every developer I know is passionate about a technology, development process or other niche.

Why not share your passion by writing about it and help others solve their problems.

There are hundreds of people running successful blogs today and making good money.

But how, I hear you say.

1. Create and promote their own products and services

  • Ebooks
  • Podcasts
  • Videos
  • Consultancy
  • Training programs
  • Webinars
  • App or web applications

2. Become an affiliate, promote other peoples products and earn a sales commission.

Becoming an affiliate is the route most people take first. It teaches them the online marketing skills they need before they attempt to sell their own.

There is a lot to learn about affiliate marketing and I am part an online community at Wealthy Affiliate. The main reasons I have been a paid member for many years are

  • It contains hours of training that is regularly  updated by the owners Kyle and Carson. I am just about to start my third full iteration.
  • It provides free reliable WordPress hosting that has good support from their partner SiteRubix.
  • There is a friendly and helpful community who help you with any questions you may have. I have seen a few software developers in the community who help with technical issues.

There is a free membership option, so why not sign up and get some free training.

Freelance Development

This was great for me as I hate watching tv and used to cut code sitting in my front room on my laptop, whilst my wife watched her favourite tv shows.

The only downside was that the laptop ran hot in those days and it was uncomfortable in the summer evenings.

There are many ways to find freelance development work.

I used to contact local graphic designers, small web studios and previous clients.  They often have bursts of client work they need extra help with.

One of my clients needed a skill set that he did not have, so I dusted off the C++ cobwebs, worked late in the evenings for a few weeks and made a tidy little sum.

You can also use a freelance website to bid for work. I am afraid I cannot recommend any of these as I have not used any.

Here is a post you may find useful – The 15 Best Freelance Websites to Find Jobs.

Technical Consultancy

There are hundreds of businesses who cannot afford to have full time technical staff. They use external consultants to solve their technical problems.

A graphic designer I know had a printing client who was trying to connect a large bespoke printer to a PC. I did some research, implemented a solution and got paid the same day.

That reminds me, always insist on payment on delivery of either software or advice. You are not a business who can afford to wait 30 days or more.

Let small businesses in your area know that you are available for consultancy work. Ping them on a regular basis to ensure you are always in the front of their mind when they hit a problem.

Wrap up

As you can see there are plenty of ideas for side projects where you can –

  • Improve your current skills
  • Learn new skills
  • Make extra income
  • Meet new people
  • Have fun

So why not get started and start making extra money today.

P.S. If you found this inspiring, then please share with a friend or colleague.

Your virtual mentor & coach
Nick @

Categories: Resources


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