How to make money online as a programmer

Coding and writing

Hi, I am keypressingmonkey, programmer by trade and creative writer by night and tonight I want to share with you my experiences with making money online as a programmer. 

Programming is a sought-after profession these days, which makes it well possible to earn some side cash or even replace your day job income from programming you do in your spare time. 


How to make money online by programming and selling scripts

Several platforms allow you to sell your ready-made scripts and programs, for example which may be the biggest of them. 

Of course this means that you have to do the work upfront and chances are you’ll never sell anything at all – but that doesn’t mean it can’t be profitable. In fact I try to upload every script I build for my own use and upload it there on the off chance that someone else may buy it. 

Now you won’t get rich off of these platforms, especially considering how selling fifty to a hundred copies apparently makes you a high roller on those platforms – but it’s not a lot of work either and if you do it enough times you’ll see a somewhat stable paycheck coming in. 

I don’t recommend working exclusively for these platforms, but you can always make some money with programming by uploading your finished work there.

How to earn money as a programmer from home by writing and blogging

One of the best ways to earn money as a programmer from the comfort of your couch is to simply write about your experiences, the lessons you learned and the complicated bugs you fixed – other programmers will be able to profit from that. 

In fact writing and blogging may just be one of the best ways to profit as a programmer, for example I made over a thousand bucks last month writing about programming on Medium. 

You can also host your own blog, write books and posts for the big tech magazines – one of the most profitable ways to earn money with programming may well have nothing to do with actual lines of code. 

Setting up a programming blog is very easy, you can either go with wordpress or even host a site completely for free in five minutes using Netlify and one of their JamStack templates. Really nothing is stopping you from testing the waters so I recommend you try it. If you need inspiration for a niche feel free to check out my own blog where I blog about financial independence through coding. 

How can a programmer earn money online with courses and YouTube?

One of the easiest ways to share your experience and learnings from a coding career is to make an online course. 

You can do this two ways: Either for free and with little hassle through YouTube or by going through one of the established platforms to sell programming courses like Udemy or Skillshare. Many successful YouTubers also do both, selling the structured courses on the big platforms and promoting them with free videos on YouTube. 

This way you can earn from ad revenue and a larger audience and then put your link to udemy up there and funnel the few people willing to pay to learn to your course.

You do not need a lot to start, your computer and a decent microphone is all that you’ll ever need – maybe a webcam if you want to grow your own personality cult. 

From there you can simply start making tutorial videos – or just talk about your experiences which can also help a wide variety of people. 

How to make money online by programming your own tools

One of the best ways to earn money as a programmer is to simply build instead of buy. Many tools out there are highly useful, but also highly expensive – especially the monthly subscription kind. 

Many of them are also fairly simple as far as the actual logic goes – so why not build your own version? You can even sell it if you like – competition is good – but you can definitely use it for your own purposes and save a lot of money this way – or earn more. 

How to make money online by freelancing as a software developer

Freelancing should really be seen as “two freelancings” where one makes you pennies for hard work and the other makes you solid money for honest work. 

The first category encompasses all those jobs that take a lot of time to negotiate, work on and bill – often for far too low a sum. You can easily work hard, long hours and then come out with less than you could have earned delivering pizza on a quiet afternoon instead. 

The other kind mostly comes through the “professional” freelancing sites like upwork (instead of fiverr) and most importantly word of mouth. That latter one is how I get 99% of my freelance work, I just can’t bring myself to spend hours looking for shitty jobs to do something that already drives me mad during the day. 

However, once you find some good clients you can start looking at a serious paycheck each month, even if the actual money can vary between months. It is definitely one of the most profitable ways to earn money, especially if you have friends who give you “overflow work” that they can’t handle themselves. In between those there is some good money to be made in freelancing and it can definitely replace a full-time income if you’re willing to take the risk and effort. 

Summary: It is definitely possible to earn money online as a programmer

Between all those options us programmers are in a nice position to earn money on the side – and don’t forget that we are also qualified for a lot of offline jobs thanks to our problem solving skills. 

I hope you could find some inspiration in this post and that you, too can start earning a solid extra paycheck each month. 

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