As one of the largest global economies, Canada offers excellent opportunities to earn passive income (definition and more info on what passive income is here). Many passive income ideas, businesses, side-hustles, or investments require an internet connection and Canada is one of the most active countries online. As of December 2015, reports that 96 percent of Canadian have access to broadband equal or greater than 5 Mbps (source) and 2018, over 25 million Canadians accessed social networks (source) with the number expected to grow to 27.1M by 2023.
How can I earn passive income in Canada? You can earn passive income from well-executed passive income ideas like blogging, podcasting, chatbots, eCommerce, niche sites, dropshipping, or print-on-demand for example. It is important to choose an idea you are passionate about or interested in learning because it takes skill, patience, dedication, and hard work in order to succeed.
In this post, we share with you twelve passive income ideas you can start in Canada. Most of these ideas are easy to start and run but no matter what they require skill and hard work in order to succeed and earn passive income. Be sure to click on the images or the orange button below each section in order to view a comprehensive beginner’s guide about each idea. Let’s get started.
Note Dollar amounts expressed in this article are in USD, not CAD, unless specified.
If you enjoy sharing your passions with others, you might want to consider blogging. Blogging is a popular way of earning passive income online, and there is still room for a lot more content! As of October 2017, 7.1% of Canadians (aged between 18 and 34 years) owned a blog (source). As a Canadian with a few successful blogs under my belt, I can attest that blogging can be a fun way of earning passive income.
To get started, you need a blog idea (preferably a niche idea) that you are interested in or, better yet, are passionate about. Once you have written enough helpful content that answers specific search queries, you will see traffic to your site start to grow. You can then monetize it through Google Ads, or by selling digital products for example in order to earn passive income. Income School’s Ricky Kessler and Jim Harmer, offer a comprehensive course full of proven strategies to help you earn over $1,000/month with a monetized blog. I highly recommend their course as a Project24 member myself. For more information about blogging as a viable passive income idea, please view our complete blogging guide.
Like many other countries, the usage of bots is growing in Canada, and they are used in a variety of industries to outsource and automate workflows and conversations. They are even used in Canada’s political spheres (source). There is a demand for Chatbots from industries, businesses, and individuals making it a viable idea to earn passive income.
You can earn passive income by creating and selling Chatbots to businesses in different industries, using your bot for affiliate marketing, providing your bot free and earning commissions on sales or leads that it generates and more. There are many ways to monetize a chatbot and you can learn more in this article on our site. All you need is to identify an industry in need that you are interested in, to create a helpful chat flow, create a bot that can serve it, and choose ways of monetizing it to earn passive income. Creating bots is fairly easy with today’s technology, but it requires patience to drive traffic to your bot and attract advertisers and other people (blogging the right way can help with that). With the right content, a sound audience, and a popular industry, you can earn good monthly passive income with a well-monetized bot. For more information about chatbots, feel free to view our full chatbot guide.
eCommerce is a big business in Canada. In 2020, there are over 28 million eCommerce users across the country with expectations of an additional 2.7 million users shopping online by 2024 (source). Online retail sales are expected to surpass $27 million in 2020 (source). eCommerce presents a lot of opportunities as a sound passive income idea for anyone living in Canada.
You can earn passive income from eCommerce by selling your own products, dropshipping (or selling products you do not physically stock), affiliate marketing, print-on-demand, and selling digital products. You need the right strategies and products to comfortably earn you over $1,000/month in passive income (source). For more information about eCommerce as an excellent passive income idea, check out our detailed eCommerce guide.
Research from Canada Post, found that over 80% of Canadians shopped online in 2016 (source). Dropshipping is a form of eCommerce where you sell products that you do not physically store, and when they sell, they are fulfilled by a drop shipper on your behalf. he drop shipper takes care of packing and shipping the products that are sold. In most cases they also take care of returns. You can make a good passive income dropshipping products inside or outside Canada.
The amount of income you can earn from dropshipping depends in part on the items you choose to dropship. Other factors include the available market for your products, profit margins, and expenses incurred. Many dropshippers sell either a few high-ticket items or hundreds of low-ticket items. Dropshipping sounds like an easy idea but it requires knowledge, skills, and dedication. With the right skills and products, you can earn a decent passive income by offering dropshipping online. You can learn more about dropshipping in our ultimate dropshipping guide that contains videos and an in-depth podcast.
5. Print on Demand
Print on demand is a good way for beginners to make money by selling different designs online and can be successfully run from Canada. If you are an enthusiastic artist, this can be an excellent passive income stream, or way for you to monetize your artwork.
Once a buyer orders your product, the print-on-demand company prints and fulfils the order on your behalf. You can advertise and sell your designs on platforms like Ecwid, Shopify, eBay and Amazon. Ecwid can allow you to sell your prints through different social media platforms including Facebook, and Instagram. For more on print-on-demand just view our detailed print-on-demand guide.
YouTube has become a popular passive income idea that can earn thousands of dollars monthly. I run a YouTube channel and earn passive income sharing useful content on it. The channel is not huge (I do not have hundreds of thousands of subscribers), but it is well monetized. With quality information, you can attract an audience, grow it, monetize your channel, and earn passive income.
Although it sounds easy, there’s a lot that goes into creating a successful channel. Achieving monetization status is the most difficult part that requires patience and dedication to your audience. YouTube currently demands you have at least 1k subscribers and 4k hours of watch time to be considered for monetization, and it can take a while to get there. But with the right content, a growing audience, and proven strategies like the ones provided in Project 24, you can earn over $1,000/month with a well-monetized channel. For detailed information about YouTube as a passive income source, check out our detailed YouTube guide.
Studies indicate that in 2019 over 24 % of Canadian adults admitted to listening to a podcast every week (source). Podcasting is hence becoming a popular way of sharing information in Canada. According to Edison Research 40% podcast listeners in Canada listen to at least 4 podcasts per week (source).
If you have excellent content, a large following, and good monetization strategies you can earn passive income from a podcasting business. And recording podcasts is fairly easy requiring minimal intervention once it is published. However, driving traffic to your podcasts is difficult and requires time. Income School’s Ricky and Jim share their monetization and traffic strategies in Project 24. For more information about podcasting as a lucrative passive income idea, please check out our podcasting guide.
8. Infoproducts [Courses]
Infoproducts are an excellent way to make passive income online. I sell eCommerce courses and eBooks on my own website and although it took me two full months to create my 60 video courses, and entire days to create useful eBook content, they are now fairly passive sources of income. In the video below, Ricky and Jim from Income School’s Project 24 talk about the importance of having info-products.
Infoproducts can consist of info-courses, eBooks, audiobooks, podcasts and other digital files. They are documents or files you can stream or download that provide educational content. If you already have a YouTube audience, this can be a great way to add an extra layer of monetization.
9. Selling eBooks
You can make passive income by creating eBooks and then selling them online. eBooks are popular in Canada and more people are reading them than ever before. Total eBook sales in Canada are expected to surpass $600 million in 2020 and hit $730 million by 2024 with over 9.6 million eBook readers (source).
Choosing the correct niche can help you find ready buyers for your content. Identifying your target market is very important when you decide to take part in this passive income stream; your topics should also be interesting enough to attract people to buy your book. Combining this passive income idea with blogging or YouTubing can be very beneficial since you can build up an audience, understand their needs, create the content and sell it to them. Check out this guide for more information on how you can make passive income from eBooks.
10. Flipping Domains
Flipping domain names is another fun way to generate passive income. Domain flipping is fairly easy and only requires a few steps to get started. All you have to do is to buy a domain name at a low price, list it for sale, and sell it to a buyer at a profit. If you are in Canada, you can choose domain names that relate to your location with .ca domains. For instance, you can choose a domain name that could relate to a coffee shop.
You should carry out research using sites like Google trends to help you discover the trends in your location. Such information will help you out when choosing which domains to buy. With the right skills, you can earn good money by flipping domain names. For more on flipping domains, check out our domain flipping guide.
If you love to play video games, this may be for you. In 2018, 53% of female internet users in Canada played mobile games, compared to 48 percent of men (source). Gaming can be an excellent passive income idea that can supplement your current income, or become a main source of revenue.
You can use video platforms such as YouTube and Twitch to stream live games to your audience and earn from ads, affiliate marketing, eCommerce and more. For more on how you can make passive income from gaming, check out our gaming for passive income guide.
12. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing can also be an excellent source of passive income if you are located in Canada, and can easily supplement other ideas we have already listed here such as blogging and YouTubing. Affiliate marketing consists in recommending products or services that are rendered by others for a commission on sale. For instance, Amazon runs an affiliate marketing service that allows members to receive commissions from successful product sales.
You should recommend products or services you actually like and enjoy yourself. Otherwise, it will be hard to be convincing to your audience in the sales process. To become an affiliate marketer, you first have to sign up to an affiliate service (there are many available out there), identify a product, and promote the product through your referral links. For more information on how to make passive income from affiliate marketing, check out our guide.
The market for audiobooks has been growing steadily over the last few years (source). In Canada, in 2018, 31% of 449 respondents used Amazon Prime or Kindle Unlimited, while 27% had a subscription with Audible (source).
Making and selling audiobooks can be a great passive income opportunity if you are comfortable reading out loud. You do not need expensive equipment to get started if you are selling your own audiobook. You can actually use a smartphone. If you have a YouTube audience for example, and wrote a popular eBook, then why not create an audiobook to go with or to sell on the side? To learn more about how you can make audiobooks for passive income check out on our guide.
14. Niche Sites
Niche sites are blogs that address specific questions related to search terms meant to appeal to a specific audience. Like for a regular blog, a niche site can be an excellent way of earning passive income in Canada.
For instance, instead of blogging about Photographing Canadian Landscapes, you can narrow down your niche to a topic like Photographing Atlantic Canada’s Landscapes. You should make sure that there are people searching for topics you write about. Building a successful niche site takes time and dedication. Ricky and Jim’s Project 24 course offers actionable strategies to help you create a successful niche site and can earn over $7,000/month in 24 months. By any means, it’s not a promise of success, but it’s a great place to learn how to get there. You can learn more about earning passive income through niche websites by checking out our comprehensive beginner’s guide to niche sites.
15. Niche Membership Sites
Starting and running a niche membership site can make for an awesome side hustle. Niche membership sites earn income by charging membership fees to be part of a community that can benefit from a variety of perks. These benefits may include access to info-products such as courses, eBooks, podcasts or audiobooks, and other things like forums, communities and exclusive content.
You can also interact with members, generate ideas, and grow your audience. In order to have a successful niche membership site, you must have something that your members and audience really want and will pay for on a recurring basis. It’s important to note that this may not be 100% passive as you will probably need to continue to create content or provide the audience value over time for them to want to remain members. For more on how to make passive income using niche membership sites, click on our guide.
16. Charging Scooters
The next few ideas are more like side hustles since they require more in-person time to accomplish. Electric scooters have become popular micro-mobility in cities across Canada. In fact, I own a Xiaomi Scooter and I love it. Micro-mobility solutions are becoming popular in major cities like Toronto and Montreal because of the movement convenience they offer, especially for short distances.
Provinces like Ontario have launched a 5-year pilot project that allows the use of electric scooters (source). Montreal has also opened the market to large scooter companies. This means you can earn passive income by charging scooters around your city. Companies like Lime and Bird pay between $3 and $20 for every scooter you charge. All you need to do is pick a couple of scooters at night, charge them, deliver them back, and get paid. For more information about charging scooters as a passive income idea, feel free to view our guide.
17. eBay / Kijiji
eBay is one of the most popular international online marketplaces (source), and Kijiji is one of the most popular local marketplaces for classified ads in Canada. Thousands of buyers visit these platforms daily looking for the best deals on products locally and internationally.
You can make an income by selling your products internationally on eBay or locally on Kijiji. You can sell your own products or purchase, repair and flip other people’s things. Check out our eBay and Craigslist guide (which is similar to Canada’s Kijiji) for more information.
Like in many places, ridesharing is becoming a popular source of making income passively in Canada. According to Statistica, revenue from the ride-sharing industry is set to hit $2757 million in 2020 (source). With an annual growth rate of 2.8%, the market revenue is bound to surpass $3k million by 2024. So if you own a car, this can be an interesting passive income source.
Ridesharing can be especially fun for people who love to travel and meet up with new people. I have used ridesharing services multiple times to get around Quebec. The drivers are always happy to make some side income, and I’m always happy to meet new people and get a low-cost ride. This idea is most passive for people who offer it on regular commutes to work for example. With or without a passenger, they have to take the trip anyway. Some people have made good money by using ridesharing as a hobby, side hustle and a source of passive income. For more on ridesharing, check out our guide.
Can you make a living from passive income? It is possible to sustain your livelihood from some of the passive income streams that we have discussed. It may take many years to set up a successful passive income business, but it is possible to make a full-time income from one.
How long would it take before I start earning income passively? The amount of time it takes before you break even depends on your individual effort, skill, choice of niche and more. Not all businesses succeed, actually, most fail. You should make sure to learn, improve, execute and observe good management skills to prevent losing your money.
Are all passive income ideas online? Many but not all passive income ideas need to be carried out online. For example, passive income businesses such as laundromats, self-service storages, self-service stores, car washes, arcades and more do not need to be carried out online to be successful passive income sources.