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5 Easy Ways to Make Passive Income From Your Open-source Projects

5 ways to make passive income from open source projects

This post shares five easy ways to make passive income from your open-source project. All these ideas are easy to implement. Keep reading to learn more!

When you create your project, you want it to have the broadest impact on as many people as possible. It is especially true when your project is open-source. You want as many people as possible to benefit from your work. But, how will you generate passive income without selling or licensing your project?

1. Selling Documentation

Many companies and individuals use open source projects to enhance their existing tools and services. Mostly all developers want to get things done as quickly as possible. As a project developer, you know everything about the project you build, and it’s easier for you to create Documentation for it.

You can create detailed Documentation and use a marketplace like Gumroad to sell it. The marketplace will handle the sales while you sit back and watch the cash rolling in.


Most probably, your project is complete and fully functional. Buy a domain name, integrate a payment gateway like Paypal or Stripe, and launch it on Product hunt. You won’t; believe me, some people still make money this way using other’s projects. It would be best to have the basic marketing tactics to get the ball rolling.

3. Advertisement

Ad networks like Carbon Ads can help you monetize your open source project. They offer industry-standard eCPM rates and work on a contract basis. Brands like Adobe partnered with Carbon Ads to promote various tools and services. You can place ads within your project and earn passive income from it.

4. GitHub Sponsors

Github Sponsorship is the easiest and most proven way to earn passive income from Github. Find people who sponsored similar projects and pitch them. See what other developers are offering to sponsors and provide more value to them. Alternatively, you find sponsors on LinkedIn as well.

One trick is to find similar projects with many sponsors, copy the repo URL, and track the backlinks on the Ahrefs backlink checker. Find blogs that covered their project and pitch them to cover yours too. This way, your project will get more exposure and possibly some sponsors.

5. Codecanyon

You already have a functional code; write a document providing installation & white-labeling instructions. List the code on Codecanyon and forget about it. Individuals and small businesses buy codes from Codecanyon, and authors make a shit load of money. Since we are talking about passive income, you can mark on Codecanyon listing that you do not provide support for that item.

I will share more ideas here soon; press ctrl D to bookmark this page. If you found this post helpful, consider sharing it with your friends.

Feel free to check out this new repo list if you have a minute.


Questions and Answers for Geeks

What is open-source?

Wondering what open-source is? Open-source software is computer software made available with source code, giving everyone access to modify, distribute and further develop the software.

What are two examples of open source?

If you’re involved in the tech industry, you have undoubtedly wondered what some examples of open-source are. Mozilla Firefox and LibreOffice are the two most famous examples of open source.

Is open source mean free?

Open-source software is created and made available under a license allowing anyone to use, modify, and distribute it for free. Open source software often comes at no cost; sometimes, the only price is time. However, many open source projects make revenue through donations or advertisements.

Where Can I find open source projects?

A wealth of open-source projects are available for you to download, and you may be surprised at what you can find. The two primary sources of open source projects are GitHub and SourceForge.