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6 Ways you can make side-income as a developer

Shubhra Agarwal
Started as tech enthusiast, later developed keen interest in programming. I have always been interested in learning new technical things, solving problems.
・2 min read

Don’t worry. I’m not going to tell you to start a blog.

1. Shopify App/Themes

Shopify is a massive market. For many, it can feel saturated. But is it really? Let’s say you price your app at $25 subscription and you have 100 shops using it. That’s a solid $2.5k right in your pocket each month.

There are online shops opening left, right, and center. If you can come up with an idea that solves a particular pain point for shopkeepers, it can be easy money.

2. WordPress Plugins/Themes

For non-developers, WordPress is still one of the main go-to for blogging. Theme development is one of those things that’s been around for so long that you might find it hard to compete and make any actual money.

Market places like ThemeForest can feel like they’re taking more than the hassle it takes to get a theme past their submission criteria.

Sell a few dozen or two at $29-$45 per month and you’re set for a good passive income stream.

3. A productivity tool

Productivity tools are the essence of getting things done. Make something, launch it, set it up with a free trial and then upgrade into a subscription model. It just needs to solve a productivity problem that’s annoying enough to be worth paying for.

4. Make something that matters to you

The thing about being a developer is that we solve problems. Surely, there’s something annoying in your life that you can solve for yourself.

It’s like one of those projects we get back in school — you know the kind that tells you to come up with an idea to solve some major world issue like poverty and hunger.

Except you’re taking it down a notch and just focusing on yourself.

If you find a tech-based solution, you can either open-source it and monetize through sponsorship. Or, you can sell it as a once-off or subscription model.

The possibilities are endless. You just need to stop, figure out what’s annoying in your digital life and solve it. Chances are, you’re not the only one experiencing it.

5. Gumroad projects

Digital assets can be traded as commodities. This includes graphics, icons, themes, and plugins.

Gumroad just saves you the hassle of starting up an online store to sell them. It’s free — unless you want lowered fees.

Then there’s a small price for a subscription. Even then, the free account fees are still decent in general. You’ll still need to do your own marketing to get the sales. By the end of it all, you’ll pick up a few new skills at the very least.

6. Externalize your knowledge

There are platforms out there like Udemy, Skillshare, and Teachable that can help you double-bank on your knowledge if you can commit to externalizing it.

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