5 Ways to Earn Recurring Monthly Income

This week we are talking a lot about recurring revenue, that’s revenue that you earn on a monthly basis, like a job but better. Earning recurring revenue is the best way to keep your existing small business afloat even during down times like holidays and sickness.

Having a steady monthly revenue is money that you will earn week after week or month after month with just a little daily upkeep. You can add levels of recurring income to your business model even if you are a service provider.

Here are some ideas you can start right now to set up a few recurring revenue streams.

Write an eBook – Don’t just write the eBook, sell it. Today it’s very simple to put a book for sale on Kindle via Amazon.co.uk. Even if you only sell your book for .99 pence you can make a nice, steady recurring revenue stream. You can write books about your own business, your own life, or even a fictional novel if you want to. There are writers who could not get published in a traditional manner earning six figures via Amazon Kindle. Why not you? Many business experts have a book, it adds to their credibility and it can add to yours. Imagine making recurring revenue years down the road from work you did today. Take a long, serious look at writing an ebook.

Teach Others – Most people are an expert at something. If you are making money working from home as any type of service provider, you can help others do the same. Create an ecourse, and either put it in a members only website  (the Premise WordPress plugin will help you with this) or have it delivered by members only email subscription sign up. The good thing about this is the work is done once, and other than occasional updates to the information, this recurring income idea will be on auto-pilot just like the eCourses.

Technical Support – Look at the services you provide and choose the ones that must be done on a regular basis. For instance, if you’re a technically inclined Virtual Assistant who works with their clients on keeping their websites updated you can offer a monthly recurring package of updates. You would put the client on auto-pay, or auto-billing which can easily be accomplished with billing software such as Freshbooks.com and even Paypal, and then you would automatically do the updates as needed for their sites with a mutually agreed upon schedule.

Create a service club – Many big name sites do it, like Amazon, Costco and others. For a small membership price you are first in line for service, or you get other special items if you choose to use them. The trick here is that the specials do not roll over and the client must act by a certain date each month. For instance, if you’re a graphic designer you could offer 1 banner, 1 button, and 1 other graphic each month for a price you feel is fair. The member is set up on auto pay or recurring billing the first of each month. The members are entitled to use their credits on a first come, first serve basis with a 48 hour notice. If they choose not to use their credits one month, it does not roll over. Believe it or not people will pay for the privilege of being first just like they pay for the privilege of convenience.

Long Contracts – Another idea for recurring income is to give discounts for longer contracts. Instead of just working week to week or month to month give your new clients (and old) the option to sign a yearlong contract for a discount. Make the terms of the contract explicit that if they leave the contract early they will need to pay the discounted fee difference. For instance, if you give a 50 dollar per month discount due to the client signing a yearlong contract, then they cancel after seven months, to end the contract they will need to pay $350.00 to end the contract early. Ensure that all your payments for these contracts are received before you start any work agreed upon.

These are just 5 ideas to kick start your recurring monthly incomes, what others would you add to the list?

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Sarah Arrow

Blogging an issue for you? Social media not quite working how it should be?That's okay I understand. I started blogging back in 2006 and grew into a kick-ass blog coach as well as creator of Birds on the Blog (listed 3 times by Forbes as a top 100 website for women), I'm frequently listed as both a top content marketing expert and as an influential marketer.
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  1. Hi Sarah,
    I’m really glad I read your post, in the back of my mind lately I’ve been thinking maybe I could write a book, I would love to write a fictional book and it would be so great to sell it on Amazon! I didn’t know that it could be that easy and hadn’t even thought of Amazon before which is pretty silly of me but you’ve given me a lot to think about, so thank you !!!

    Regards, Jessica.

    • Hi Jessica, books are a great starting point and Amazon Kindle a terrific testing ground. I hope you take the time to write your book.

  2. One of my biggest projects I have been tackling is writing a couple ebooks. One, I want to give for free, and the other, sell for a small price.

    Because I am a WordPress designer and developer, the other recurring income project is premade themes….perhaps even my own simple framework and then child themes as I have been working on this after seeing other people use some of my clients’ sites as basis for their own site.

    I work a lot and it makes sense to have something you do not have to put your hands on all the time.

  3. Sarah,

    Great and solid money-making ideas. Write an ebook and sell on Amazon or Barnes and Noble. Do a simple but effective 3-course, or provide services on a monthly basis with recurring billing through PayPal are all great ideas for keeping that money coming in! People hate to update their blog themes, WordPress and their plugins, and some have no interest in promoting their own blog posts on Social Media, so those are all things that can definitely be done on a monthly basis. And as you say, we are all experts at something, so the ebook or the e-course can keep some or maybe a LOT of income coming in. But the key is to just get started and not wait until You are an international expert before you write something.

    And glad you recommend Premise software. Great for landing pages to promote your book or course, as well.


    ~ Jupiter Jim

  4. This is about the zillionth time the ebook concept has appeared as a suggestion…I guess i better get writing. Thanks for some great ideas Sarah.

    • The universe is sending you a message Celeste :)
      Thanks for stopping by (and come back and let us know if you did your ebooks:))

  5. My problem – Sarah, is I want to tackle all of these at the same time and end up doing none of them – aaargh! Any tips on managing your time to actually get one of these completed?

    • I just focus on one thing at a time Claire, which is easier said than done. At the moment I am focusing on one book and one membership site. This means when I get bored with one, I can move onto the other… Membership sites often work better as a group project where you can share the workload. I’ve always felt that a site needed at least 2 people to manage it and give it the respect that it needs.

  6. Sarah,
    for a while I kep looking at your image and my perception was that you are just anotehr pretty face… well, today for teh first time took time to read more attentively what you wrote (including the sales page on the “Relationship Marketing 101″ and I have to take back all what I though before.. YOU ARE AN AMAZING LADY.. your a great person who is sharing prety good info to all of us who is not as creative as your self.

    Sorry for seen you just as a pretty face.. YOU ARE a lot more and I am glad to have discovered, so now I know when to go for great ideas.
    Tahnks so much for sharing so much of what you know.

  7. There are other ways to have a residual monthly income but it does coincide with your teaching others section! A new public company has launched into the UK from the USA and Canada which pays in five ways! the most lucrative is the monthly residual income- this builds up as you expand your home business and pays to infinity. The biggest difference with this company is that its not selling potions,pills,or products which you have to create a want for – Every single person in the world already in the business- we just dont get paid for it yet!

    Thats a huge chance to earn monthly residual income

  8. Sarah, I enjoyed your article. My personal challenge is to put my e-book on Kindle so that others can access it. I also need to market it across different channels in the coming year. Thanks for getting my brain thinking :)

    • Hi Steve, I shall look forward to seeing your books on Kindle :)

  9. I followed this link from someone who posted it on Google +. I am definitely thinking about starting a membership site. I have heard of some WordPress plugins that would make this pretty easy to do.

    I have already written a couple of eBooks but I think the time is for a new one to come out.

    Take Care.

    • Hi Justin and welcome, Wishlist member is a plugin that I’ved used as well as Premise. There are plenty to choose from, good luck creating your membership site :)

  10. Sarah,

    IMO, the two best ways to create recurring revenue is with software and membership sites. Software slightly edges out membership sites because it has a greater perceived value. Both can be put on autopilot and create a passive income stream.

  11. Awesome post you have here and what a fantastic blog. Really happy to read this and will keep coming back for more. Happy New Year. Regards.

  12. Cool ideas Sarah
    I had a good 2012 and I’m looking to improve on my income for 2013.

    I like the sound of the eBook and recurring income / long contracts.

    I already get a fair amount of repeat business but the ebook would be a completely new venture for me.

    • You have a great one already with the content on the Easy P website.
      One of the interesting things I’ve found with all my books is that I earn more from them affiliate wise than I do on this site :)

      • “You have a great one already with the content on the Easy P website.”
        Eh thanks for that prompt Sarah.

        “I earn more from them affiliate wise than I do on this site ”
        You mean via folks acting as affiliates?
        Could you say a little more.

        • No, with the affiliate links in the content. For example I love Market Samuari yet I’ve never made a sale through links on this site. Yet I’ve made a few from the books. It’s a great product and it’s now getting into my audience’s hands :)

          • Ah… “with the affiliate links in the content.” -with you.

            Who would have thought that.

  13. Hi Sarah – Your site is definitely motivating for Ebook creation, something that I often kick around but have not executed. I’ve bookmarked one of your other articles Ebook Toolkit.

    I can absolutely see how links can convert better through an Ebook. If people are willing to throw themselves into the content of the Ebook, they are more apt to use your suggestions for products.

    • Thanks Steven :)
      The link converting astounded me, but then I only recommend things that I use and that get results.
      The ebook toolkit has some really handy tools to get the books looking spiffy, I love Product Creator PRo, it makes my giveaways look very slick!

  14. Sarah, Great ideas. The one that appeals to me the most is writing an ebook. One may think…Oh I can’t do that! But when we ask ourselves, I am sure there are a number of things a person has done in their lifetime that would be worthy of an ebook. I do offer a service…sorta. I run a Food Co-op in my area. I don’t really make anything, I just charge 10% on top of their order to cover the fuel charged by the company. I enjoy providing a way for people to get good healthy, organic foods. Unless it grew really big, then I would make a few bucks. :) I started advertising, so it looks like it will grow.
    I appreciate your great ideas,

    • Hi Lynn, a food co-op sounds fascinating and very worthwhile, is that something that you could write about for your ebook?
      Thanks for stopping by :)

  15. Hi Sarah,
    great suggestions. I coach people and that has worked out to be a valuable income stream for me. It is important to work out how you are going to make income online – it is not as easy as it is suggested by many. however, writing an ebook about what you are passionate about is a great idea. If it is good, then you may have a source of residual income. Teaming up with other people as referral sources is also good.You can decide how you are going to help each other – trade services or refer people to each other for a referrral fee. This can be a neat source of income.


  16. Hi Sarah,

    All five of these are excellent suggestions of how to create residual income. The one I relate to the most is writing an eBook. I have written several eBooks and it seems most of the bloggers I know are creating Kindle books. I think it is time to look into this particular area. I would have to collect positive reviews, promote my eBook, and attract buyers. Sounds fun! Thanks for sharing.

    Raena Lynn

    • Hi Raena,
      For me I’ve struggled with the reviews – I hate asking!
      But the Kindle market place is a good one and it makes selling easier and more efficient, so I’ll be doing more with it this year.
      Let me know when your books are published, I’ll be happy to review one for you

  17. It’s so great all five tips are best suggestions of how to create residual income.

  18. Awesome post&powerful tips here

    One thing I must do is to write an ebook

    thanks for sharing!


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