Monday, April 22, 2024

3 Income Streams You Can Build While STILL Working Full Time

💰 How to Build Multiple Income Streams While Working Full-Time

Are you tired of living paycheck to paycheck? Do you dream of becoming wealthy but don’t want to risk a lot of money upfront? The best way to proceed is to start a side hustle while you still work full-time. In this article, I will go into depth about three income streams that you can build and scale while you’re still an employee. But first, let’s take a look at the table of contents to see what we’ll be covering.

Table of Contents

1. Introduction

2. E-commerce Store

– Drop Shipping

– Private Label

3. Content Creation

– Blogging

– Podcasting

– YouTube

4. Online Course Creation

5. Pros and Cons of Each Income Stream

6. Highlights

7. FAQ

E-commerce Store

The first income stream that you can establish while working full-time is an e-commerce store. This is the path that my wife and I took when we decided to start selling handkerchiefs back in 2007. At the time, my wife was pregnant with her first child and she wanted to quit her six-figure job in order to stay at home with the kids. But where we live in the Silicon Valley, you pretty much need two incomes to live in an area with good schools. So we brainstormed different businesses that we could run from home and came up with the idea to sell handkerchiefs online.

Why handkerchiefs? It’s because when we first got married back in 2003, my wife wanted a handkerchief to dry her tears of joy at our wedding, but we couldn’t find them anywhere. After a lot of searching online, we finally found a factory in China that sold exactly what we wanted, but the minimum order was 200 pieces. So we ended up buying all 200, used a handful of these for our wedding, and then got rid of the rest of the handkerchiefs on eBay, and they sold like hotcakes.

At the time, both of us knew nothing about e-commerce or selling online, but here’s what we did. By allowing a computer to take orders 24/7, we could ship out the orders anytime that we wanted to. So when our first child was born, my wife took care of our child during the day, and when I got back from work, I helped her pack orders after our daughter went to bed at around 7:30 p.m. And eventually, we decided to offer personalization on our handkerchiefs, where brides can embroider their names and their wedding date. And guess who did the sewing early on? Yours truly. I would work my day job as an engineering director from 9 till about 6:00 p.m., eat dinner with my wife, and then sew for the next 2 hours.

Now, it was hard work, but the upshot was that we made over $100,000 in profit in our first year of business, which replaced my wife’s salary. By the way, if you’re interested in learning how to get started in e-commerce, make sure you sign up for my free 6-day e-commerce mini-course below.

Now, we started this e-commerce store for only $630, and basically, I bought a digital camera, a used computer on Craigslist, spent about $200 for inventory, and used a free open-source shopping cart to run the store. Now, back when I started, there was no Shopify and no Amazon, so basically, I had to learn how to code PHP. But today, no technical knowledge is required to start an online store. The exact amount of money you need to get started depends on your e-commerce business model. If you have less than $100 to invest, start with Drop Shipping, which is a business model where you have an agreement with the supplier where they handle inventory storage and fulfillment. Basically, you take orders, collect money, and your supplier handles the rest. You only pay for the product after you’ve gotten paid by the customer, which allows you to start selling online without any upfront inventory costs. The main downside of Drop Shipping, however, is that your margins are low, and it’s going to take you a little bit longer to make significant money.

Meanwhile, on the complete opposite end of the spectrum is selling your own branded products, otherwise known as private label selling. Private label is where you have your products custom manufactured by a factory, which carries your brand name and logo. And this is the route that my wife and I took with our online store over at To get started with private label, it will cost you a minimum of $33,000 to get started, but your margins are going to be great, and you’ll have full control over your brand. Both business models have their trade-offs, and once again, if you’re interested in learning more, take my free mini-course below.

Content Creation

The next income stream you can start while working full-time is to create content. Once my online store started making six figures per year, and my wife quit her job, I decided to work on my own retirement plan in 2009, and that’s when my blog over at was born. And at the time, I was still working full-time as an engineering director, but we had hired someone to help with our online shop, which relieved me of all of my sewing duties. And this left me with roughly two hours per night to work on my own business.

Unlike my wife’s situation, I actually loved my job, so I didn’t really have any crazy goals for my blog to make any money right away. But after reading about how other people online, like Steve Pavlina, were killing it with their blogs, I had faith that if I just created content and put myself out there, that eventually, people would find me. My wife’s took a very long time to make money, but that was fine with me. In fact, I don’t think I made a single penny in my first year. But I discovered how much I enjoyed people reading and commenting on my posts.

By year two of consistently writing one blog post per week, I made enough to take my wife out to dinner at McDonald’s. And it wasn’t until year three in 2012 when I broke six figures for the first time. And from there, everything hockey-sticked. In 2013, I made $171,000. In 2014, I broke $350,000. In 2015, I hit $720,000. In 2016, I hit over a million bucks. And in 2017, I hit 1.4 million. Now, the rest is history, and today, the content side of my business is pretty much neck and neck with my e-commerce store. And I was able to quit my engineering director job in 2016.

If you’re wondering how a blog can possibly make money, there are actually a bunch of different ways to do it. But I’ll just talk about how makes money. The first way is with affiliate marketing. By recommending products that I actually use to run my own online store, I get a cut of every sale. Almost every company in the world has an affiliate program. All you have to do is perform a search for a company followed by affiliate program in Google, sign up, and you’ll get a special link. Then you post this link within your blog, and if someone clicks on it and signs up, you make money. The beauty of affiliate marketing is that it’s 100% passive. You don’t even have to provide support for the customer because the sale is entirely out of your hands.

The next way I make money is through ads. By signing up with an online ads provider like Mediavine or Google AdSense, you can place ads on your site that make you money on autopilot. Now, the final way I make money is by offering sponsored posts. Now, I don’t do this very often, but occasionally, a company that I love will offer to pay me to write a blog post that mentions them in the content. Overall, there are many other ways to make money with the blog, but that’s how I personally do it.

When it comes to content, it doesn’t even have to be a blog. You can also post on YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, wherever you feel like it. This YouTube channel that you’re watching makes over six figures per year just on ads alone. And once again, it took me about three years to pass 100,000 subs and earn this much. I started my podcast in 2014, interviewing other successful entrepreneurs online with the sole purpose of meeting new people. And by 2019, it was making six figures in profit as well, selling sponsorships. The beauty of content is that once you have an audience and an email list of subscribers, you can pretty much sell anything.

Online Course Creation

Which brings me to my next income stream that you can easily start while working full-time: selling an online course. After I built an audience with teaching e-commerce, people started asking me for one-on-one mentoring. But at the time, I was still working full-time as an electrical engineer and writing blog posts at night, so I didn’t really have the time to provide private consulting. Realistically, I probably could have taken on one or two clients at most, but consulting wasn’t appealing to me.

But then one of my colleagues introduced me to the world of online courses. By recording lessons and providing group coaching, I could take on an order of magnitude more clients and make more money at the same time. Even though selling an online course sounded very appealing to me, I was still a little hesitant to get started because creating an online course is a ton of work. So here’s what I did. Instead of creating a course and then selling it, I emailed my audience and said, “Hey, I’m thinking about launching an e-commerce course, but right now, there’s zero content. But if at least 10 people sign up, I’ll create the content on the fly and provide group coaching.” 35 people signed up immediately, and that’s how my e-commerce course, Create a Profitable Online Store, was born.

At the time, and this was back in 2011, I charged $299, and 35 people signed up right away, which generated me $110,000 right off the bat. To keep things super simple, I ran my online course on a free platform called S2 member, which is a plugin for WordPress that cost me no money. I used Stripe and PayPal to manage the subscriptions and fees, and I used YouTube Live for my live office hours to store the video lessons. I signed up for Amazon S3, which at the time was free for the very first year. So all told, I started my online course all in for less than 50 bucks with very limited recurring fees. And today, with over 450 lessons, over 150 hours of video, it probably cost me less than $100 a month to maintain the class.

The beauty of teaching an online course is that there’s nothing physical to ship, and content that you create once can be sold to the masses. With these three income sources, I was making over 2 million per year while working a full-time job as an engineering director and raising two young kids at the same time. It can be done. You just have to want it.

Pros and Cons of Each Income Stream

– E-commerce Store

– Pros: Low startup costs, can be done from home, can scale quickly

– Cons: Requires inventory management, can be competitive, low margins for drop shipping

– Content Creation

– Pros: Can be done from anywhere, can be monetized in multiple ways, can build a loyal audience

– Cons: Takes time to build an audience, can be competitive, requires consistent content creation

– Online Course Creation

– Pros: High profit margins, can be sold to the masses, can be done from anywhere

– Cons: Requires a lot of work upfront, can be competitive, requires ongoing maintenance


– Starting a side hustle while working full-time is the best way to become wealthy without risking a lot of money upfront.

– You can build multiple income streams while still an employee, including e-commerce stores, content creation, and online course creation.

– E-commerce stores can be started with low startup costs and can scale quickly, but require inventory management and can be competitive.

– Content creation can be monetized in multiple ways and can build a loyal audience, but takes time to build an audience and requires consistent content creation.

– Online course creation has high profit margins and can be sold to the masses, but requires a lot of work upfront and ongoing maintenance.


Q: How much money do I need to start an e-commerce store?

A: The exact amount of money you need to get started depends on your e-commerce business model. If you have less than $100 to invest, start with Drop Shipping, which is a business model where you have an agreement with the supplier where they handle inventory storage and fulfillment.

Q: How long does it take to make money with a blog?

A: It can take a long time to make money with a blog. took a very long time to make money, but that was fine with me. In fact, I don’t think I made a single penny in my first year.

Q: How much time does it take to run an online course?

A: It really depends on how you structure it. There are some people who sell online courses with very little support, basically someone buys a class and that’s it. But if you want to charge top dollar for your course and if you actually want your students to be successful, you have to be more involved.


– My free 6-day e-commerce mini-course: [link]

– Mediavine: [link]

– Google AdSense: [link]

– Profitable Online Store: [link]

– S2 member: [link]

– Amazon S3: [link]