I’ve got a friend who has used this business model for years as a ‘side’ business.
Funny thing is, his side business earns more than many full time businesses – about $10,000 per piece of software per year.
And yes, he doesn’t own any of this software himself, which means he never has to deal with programmers or customer complaints that the software isn’t doing whatever it should be doing.
Here’s how it works:
Find free software that people use – for example, cloud storage, help desk software, popular WordPress plugins, membership software and so forth. You might want to concentrate just on software that is used in the online marketing world, or you could branch out into other niches.
You’re looking for software that is somewhat popular, but ideally it’s not all that simple to use.
Anything come to mind? Forums are a good place to search. Look for a number of posts from people all looking for help with the same software, and you’ve found a winner.
Now then, you can either do the next step yourself, or outsource it to someone who knows a lot about the software. If you’re doing it yourself, you’ll need to get really good at using the software before you proceed.
You’re going to put together a tutorial that shows people how to use the software. Your tutorial is going to assume they know next to nothing about it, so that anyone and everyone can benefit from it.
Take them through all the steps of installing and using the software, along with all the features they might not even know about. The point is to make it super simple for almost anyone to use the software, once they have your tutorial.
Charge a modest amount for your tutorial – nothing over the top.
You might want to add a “done for you” option or upsell in which the software is installed and set up for the customer. You can do this work yourself, or outsource it to someone else.
And inside your tutorial, place links to the paid version of the software, along with anything else that will help the reader to make the best use of the software.
All of these income streams add up.
And buyers are easy to come by, because many times people are desperate for answers. They’ve already wasted time trying to get the software to work, and they’ve wasted more time on forums and help desks trying to get the help they need.
By the time they find your tutorial, they are more than happy to hand over several dollars to get the job done, or even more money to have the job done for them.
As you can see, we’re targeting people already familiar with the software who need help.
But that’s only half of your customer base.
The other half is people looking for a particular solution.
For example, they want to know how to set up a membership site without paying a monthly fee for software. You can recommend the solution they need, and the software only has a one-time payment.
Better still, you’ll show them exactly how to install and use it.
Of course, you won’t name the software on that sales page.
And yes, you will need two different sales pages. The first one targets the group who is having trouble with the software, and the second one targets the group looking for the solution the software provides.
Want to make even more money?
You can sell private label rights or resell rights to your tutorials.
And you can also get affiliates on board as well.
This can be a great product to sell via paid advertising – both in the ‘fix a problem’ format and the ‘here’s the solution you need’ format.
The work involved in doing this is small versus the money that can be made. It won’t make you rich, but if you put out just one of these a month, you might hit six figures.
And the shelf life of each tutorial will vary according to how popular the software is. You’ll be able to sell some for only a few months, while others might be good for a year or two before you need to update them.
It’s a perfect little side business that doesn’t require much startup cash – just the ability to find software that’s confusing people or solving a real problem, and creating the tutorials for your customers.
And don’t forget – you can also sell more solutions to your new customers after they purchase the tutorial. In fact, this alone can double your profits.
Get busy, and go make some more money by helping other people solve their problems!