Making Money Online – A Hobby?

This post was guest blogged by Alan Johnson, the author of The Online Business Handbook.

After I have explained why treating online business as a chore will get you nowhere and that choosing a certain niche just because you have heard that it pays well is never the way to go with my previous guest post, it’s time to see if treating each project like a hobby would be a wiser approach on your part.

Watch Your Personal Productivity Skyrocket

Guess what: in most cases it is. Treating your projects as a hobby will do wonders as far as your personal productivity level is concerned, you will managed to get far more thing done compared to working on a project you are not all that passionate about and you will enjoy every minute of it.

Aside from getting more work done as a result of doing something you like, if you are working on a project you feel excited about then you will automatically be more eager to learn new things, and that is always a huge advantage. You will also be willing to get actively involved in your niche, to get in touch with other webmasters who share your interests in order to share opinions and, why not, in order to establish solid partnerships.

Being an online entrepreneur can indeed be fun and rightfully so, there is no reason why you can’t enjoy yourself while working on a certain project. You have the ability to make money by doing something you love, why not take advantage of it?

Slacking Off? I Don’t Think So!

There is however one thing you need to be careful about: while treating each project as a hobby is recommended, it doesn’t mean that you can afford to slack off and it most certainly doesn’t mean that being unprofessional is the way to go. Don’t treat the opportunity of working from home as something which allows you to be lazy, never make that mistake.

Can you make money by doing something you love? Most definitely, but that simply isn’t going to happen unless you add hard work to the equation as well. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that being a successful online entrepreneur is possible with such an attitude, because you could be in for quite a harsh reality check down the road.

Taking Things For Granted? Not an Option!

You should be thankful for having the opportunity to make money by doing something you are passionate about and, as a result, be even more committed to giving it 110%. Don’t take it for granted and never assume that, just because making money online can and should be fun, it will be a piece of cake.

All in all yes, considering your projects hobbies is definitely the way to go, as long as you understand that being professional is a must and as long as you understand that doing something you are excited about should make you want to work even harder. No matter what your hobbies may be, you can make a lot of money from them as long as you take things seriously, are knowledgeable and able to provide value to the Web.


47 thoughts on “Making Money Online – A Hobby?”

  1. Terry Tay says:

    That’s good advice. You have to enjoy what you are doing to truly get something out of it. If you are just in it for the money and are miserable when you are doing it, it’s going to go no where.

    FInd something you REALLY REALLY like and turn it into a niche site. You’ll find yourself enjoying it more and over the long term it has a better chance of becoming successful. You also won’t give up after the first couple weeks of no success.

    1. Lewis Empire says:

      In the end, John Chow is the expert in creating a blog based on business fundamentals. I’m guessing that he knew what he wanted to achieve and put the required effort into it before he started.

      People who start businesses wanting to run them like a hobby soon find themselves joining the 80% of businesses that fail in the first two years.

      1. Graham Lutz says:

        Lewis,

        The richest people in the country tout “loving what you do” as one of their top success factors, as found by Thomas Stanley in The Millionaire Mind.

        I don’t think he’s saying treat your accounting firm or construction company like a hobby. He’s saying to treat your blog like a hobby (i.e. something you love to do and are passionate about) and the consistency and hard work will come automatically.

    2. RacerX says:

      The over-reaching point is that when your blog ceases to be a “labor of love” and becomes just “Labor” it shows. It drives them off like vampires and garlic.

  2. ali hatukai says:

    I liked reading your posts at your blog and i see them very intersting,
    I was reading this post when i suddenly realized that i am doing every thing that this post says not to, like : take things for granted and etc,

    i would say that this post changed my view of making money online a littel, i really should look at this as a hobby and not as a income maker,

    i agree in what you said in 100%.

    ali hatukai.
    http://hatukai.com

  3. It’s SO much easier to do something you “kind of” like doing!

    1. Lewis Empire says:

      Now try doing something you LOVE!

      1. David Chew says:

        Do something that you are interested so that you will success.

  4. Joe says:

    Alan, I like how you have the steps clearly listed on the right hand side of your site. Have you considered making Step 1- Find your passion.

    It seems to be something you stress regularly here on JohnChow.com.

  5. Great advice and i have to agree that you have to like what you do to get some return.

  6. Being a blogger for 30 days has taught me that blogging is a business like any other brick and mortars business. You have to take it seriously and be really passionate about what you do. Otherwise, don’t do it!
    Ps I like dividend growth investing, its very exciting for me 🙂

  7. Colby says:

    Hey guy, just stumbled upon your site through casual reading. Pretty nice setup you have here and good information too.

  8. I have been given the opportunity to turn my hobby in to a full time career. I couldn’t ever imagine having to do a “job” everyday again. Instead, I am excited to get up and go to “work”. I am happy to go in early, stay late and “work” from home.

    If you are not doing something you love for a living, I would suggest that you figure out what you want to do, make a plan to achieve it and take action!

  9. Creadiv says:

    I disagree with your post. If you are using your hobbies to make money you chances are you are doing it for fun, not to work harder, not to give 110%. You are doing it because you love to do it.

    If you are looking to use your hobbies as a primary source of income you will often times get burnt out, because something that was once fun for you has now become a job. Because you feel like you have to do more.

    My advice to everyone is enjoy what you do, do it well, but don’t over do it. You won’t make money or be happy if you are not having fun.

    1. I agree. If it is your hobby, don’t do it to make money. But, if you do make money with it, that’s great.

  10. Aaron says:

    I’ve been treating my work online as a hobby for the last 5 years. Some day though, i’d like to take it a bit more seriously.

  11. Clearly there’s a balance to be reached between loving what you do and working hard at something that can make money. And I’d certainly never recommend that anyone run any business (whether that’s an income producing blog or website or a brick and mortar) like a hobby. A certain amount of professionalism is needed and often business decisions need to be made – you may not enjoy monetizing your site but if you don’t do it, it won’t produce income.
    The real trick though is instead of doing something just because it can potentially make you money find something that you’d do anyway. If you enjoy blogging then attempting an income producing blog is a guaranteed win. If you make money great. If not you’re still doing something you enjoy.

  12. gene says:

    Work to live (fully), not live to work.
    💡

  13. Syed Balkhi says:

    good advice … i agree with all what you said and have embedded alot of that in my business plan

  14. SweetRai says:

    yeah… and i enjoyed what im doing. who doesn’t? earning while earning is great!

  15. Trevor says:

    Yup. Certainly. Every rich person knows that!

  16. Great great take on an online business. It’s more pleasurable and easier to work on if treated like a hobby in my opinion. Chores were never fun as a kid so why would it be now 🙂

  17. Jake Cohen says:

    Yes! I completely agree… Treating something as a hobby not only proves that you are doing something that you like, but will allow you to work harder and more done (as you have said).

    You will also be more focused on your projects, and it in turn will develop more creativity towards whatever it is you are doing.

    TalkPrice.net

  18. JD Lusan says:

    Fantastic advice. You will be shooting yourself in the foot if you are only blogging in order to make money. Sharing information on a blog has to be something you love and are passionate about if it is going to be worthwhile.

  19. Play Game says:

    I always look at my blogging as a thing i take personal actually because of my passion for what i love doing half of the day anyways so why not share it. good thought!

  20. David Chew says:

    That depends actually some people prefer to make money besides blogging. 😀

  21. Alan Johnson says:

    Hi there and thank for sharing your 2 cents, appreciate the comments 🙂

    While loving your work will do wonders as far as your personal productivity level is concerned, being professional and not slacking off is always a must.

    Best wishes,

    Alan Johnson

  22. Brady Frost says:

    Hey John!
    I’m new to the whole blogging thing, I saw the article about you in Entrepreneur magazine and after a few weeks of stewing in my brain I decided to give it a shot. I’ll be honest, the idea of breaking out of being an employee by blog revenue seems very daunting, but writing about something I enjoy as a hobby and seeing where it goes from there is definitely something I can wrap my mind around. I’ve found the experience very fun and rewarding. I also wanted to pop in and thank you for your making money ebook. I might not be on the yellow brick road, but it did provide valuable insight into how to set up a hobby blog and get it on the right tracks. Who knows, maybe given enough time my blog will be profitable, but for now I’m enjoying the adventure!

  23. Mike Huang says:

    Wow! This is my read of the day 🙂 Keep up the good work!

    -Mike

  24. John, every work, at the end, can be WOW provided one is ready to work hard. Pursuing a hobby (be it making money online) needs a lot of sweat. Anyway, I am new to this blog scenario. Let me see whether I take it as a hobby, finally! and of course, earn.

  25. jimsvarkey says:

    Treating your blog as a hobby is worthwhile, though I am sure you will be tried of it after sometime. Exactly how many times will you be able to talk about that beautiful puppy of yours in a blog?Can you write more than ten posts about your puppy?

  26. I’m kind of new to web publishing (for myself, that is), and I think that centering your publishing around your hobbies, interests, and passions are key. I look forward coming home from my day job to work on my sites. I think the trick is to not put too much pressure on making money online with your hobby. If you need to make money quick, this is not the way. Don’t depend upon your online ventures to bail you out of your financial needs – this way, they are still fun. However, I do believe that over time, with a lot of hard work, you can make a great living online doing what you love.

  27. elzw says:

    Rich content, very nice design, great graphics. I have added this useful site to my favorites. It is really a very helpful site with a lot of necessary tools for webmasters. Success.

  28. Soares says:

    🙄 Im doing almost every thing you say here,men i realy want to be sucessed like you!
    Sorry my english im Portuguese!
    Regards

  29. Richard says:

    Great article! I always believe one should try our best to find out what career best fits us by linking it to our Hobby 😉 So that whilst we’re doing it (working in a job) as a career, we’re actually enjoying ourselves! It’s always great to be able to earn money doing what we like… I think that way, everyday could be a pleasure instead of pressure! Anyway, if we’re doing something just to earn money, even if we get to make a good living, if it’s not something we enjoy, then we’re probably just being a slave to money and not enjoying what we do most of the time since we’ll definitely need to put lots of time in our job-especially if it earns us good money! Ultimately, we might not be able to maintain our interest to keep it going.. Hence, try to find a job that you treat like a hobby 😉
    Great article! I always believe one should try our best to find out what career best fits us by linking it to our Hobby 😉 So that whilst we’re doing it (working in a job) as a career, we’re actually enjoying ourselves! It’s always great to be able to earn money doing what we like… I think that way, everyday could be a pleasure instead of pressure! Anyway, if we’re doing something just to earn money, even if we get to make a good living, if it’s not something we enjoy, then we’re probably just being a slave to money and not enjoying what we do most of the time since we’ll definitely need to put lots of time in our job-especially if it earns us good money! Ultimately, we might not be able to maintain our interest to keep it going.. Hence, try to find a job that you treat like a hobby 😉

  30. Pretty much the same thing I thought too…I had a good laugh at it. And all Jeff’s friends are in the infomercial giving

    testimonials. Like Shawn Casey…I won’t say anything else.

  31. That is exactly how I feel about my current job, I now do at work what I used to go home and do after I had finished my day job. Its fantastic, I now get to spend more time at home relaxing and with my kids. I do still ahve the odd obsessive moment where I jump on the laptop though.

  32. Good advice… I am sure I can apply some of that to my own life and blog… Thanks Alan!

  33. Good post! I’ll try to live on my hobby; internet! 😛

  34. natespost says:

    I agree….I have always been into computers, and when the internet first became popular, I wasn’t so exited about surfing as much as I was about figuring out how it worked. I’m finally getting started myself.

  35. Whilst that’s all great if your hobby is a popular one when it comes to making real money online you also have to consider the other side, the business side of things. Most people can not afford to spend huge amounts of time on a “hobby” blog that makes no money. Just because you can write endlessly or with passion about something doesn’t mean it will automatically make you money. This is fine if it is only a hobby but when you’re trying to make a living ROI is key.

  36. MandS says:

    There is a saying: The best job is your hobby! Really, it’s great if you can make your living out of the things you like to do! If you like blogging and you make money online with your blog, it means that you can be preoccupated with your hobby all day long, and have a good income also. This idea is driving me crazy!

  37. I think also both is best: hobby (like blogging about a niche) and at the same it’s a revenue source for you. That way you don’t mind to spend a lot of time working on your blog and you have lots of motivation! You definitely will see this back in your monthly revenue, I mean passion and making money goes often together.

  38. I agree. But I think there has to be a certain balance between treating it as a chore and as a hobby. Once that balance is made, the work will come out easier and better produced than ever.

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