The way we make money is changing. Sure, much of the world’s capital is still vested in stocks and liquid assets that fetch value on the market. But in terms of the commodities that bring billions of dollars every year? That’s evolving rapidly, even as I type this.
Nowhere is this more apparent than in the tech sector. Even just 25 years ago, saying you were into computers, mobile phones, or software got you labeled as a nerd. Corporate execs didn’t also want to talk to you, let alone offer you a job. Today, those same execs find themselves paying top dollar for programmers, developers, and cybersecurity specialists. Innovations in technology are changing the way that people spend their money, and companies are paying billions every year to stay ahead of the game.
That’s all well and good for the tech geeks who know how to code, but what about the rest of us? Is there a reason we shouldn’t be able to make money, just because we can’t program a computer? I don’t think so, and below are some growing tech trends that can make you money, even if you’re not tech-savvy.
The Transition to E-Commerce
Think back to 20 years ago. If you wanted to buy a book or rent a movie, what did you do? I’m guessing you either went to the nearest Barnes & Noble or made a trip to Blockbuster. Today, all you have to do is click checkout on your online cart.
What Amazon started way back in the mid-90s, the rest of the world is finally catching up on. 2018 was a watershed year for online sales. Online Black Friday sales surpassed $6 billion, an increase of over 23% from 2017. Also, more than $2 billion of those sales stemmed from purchases made on a mobile device.
The evidence speaks for itself. If you want to make serious money selling goods for a living, you need to be pushing an online store. Whether you’re a seasoned business or a small startup, setting yourself up online needs to be your number one priority. The good news is that starting your online storefront doesn’t require a bit of tech know-how. All you need is a little bit of business savvy, a good understanding of your target demographic, and a salesman’s flair for selling.
The Emergence of AI
I have a quick experiment for you – pull out your phone and ask Alexa or Cortana to check the weather in your area. Look out the window and see if they got it right. If they did, let that be all the proof you need that AI is a growing field that’s generating billions of dollars to tap into.
Artificial intelligence as a concept has existed for some time, at least since the 1970s. But it wasn’t until last year that we saw it hit the mainstream. And now, we see it everywhere. You can find Alexa or Cortana on mobile phones, tablets, TVs, even in speakers. Even the algorithms that Google uses to rank searches are a form of AI.
AI is only going to grow from here on out, so if you want to make some serious dough, start buying stocks in companies that are investing in AI such as:
Where’s the Money Going in AI?
McKinsey & Company estimated that in just a few short years, AI is going to be generating over $3.5 trillion every year. Retail, logistics, travel, and healthcare are the four industries that stand to profit the most. If you want to part in trillions of dollars, take out stocks in these industries and start targeting AI systems specifically for their use.
The Success of eSports
When you think about ways to make money, playing video games is probably not the first thing that pops in your mind. Can’t say I blame you. After all, video games are a passing hobby for teenage boys and college rejects who can’t score a date to save their lives, right? Twenty years ago, maybe. Today, not so much.
In 2018, the combined worth of the entire video game industry was just under $44 billion, more than 18% more than the year prior. In particular, eSports, the video game equivalent of NBA for basketball or the NFL for football, contributed $1 billion of that revenue.
So, how do you tap into that money? There are plenty of ways to go about it. You could look at invested advertising in eSports tournaments, get partial or full ownership of one of the teams, or any other number of ideas. If you want to see more of that money directly, buy up the stock in video game titans like Electronic Arts, Activision, Sony, or Nintendo.
A Growing Fascination with Augmented Reality
Speaking of video games, remember Pokemon Go? It was all the rage last year. The mobile phone game had people running around like crazy to capture pixelized monsters on their phones. That’s pretty typical of video games, but there was one key difference. The Pokemon weren’t standing in some digitally created field or on another planet. They were standing in parking lots, sidewalks, and public parks just down the street. It’s all thanks to augmented reality.
Augmented reality is the concept of superimposing digital constructs over real-world views. In other words, it’s looking at something real, with the addition of something digital, on the same screen. While Pokemon Go is an example of AR in entertainment, engineering, and construction firms can use the technology to see how a building will look when completed. The military has begun experimenting with AR to train service members, while Millenials are using AR to scope out local hotspots while they tour a new city.
AR isn’t limited to mobile phones either. Along with virtual reality, tech giants are starting to produce headsets that allow users to interact with their world in a whole new way. Investors or entrepreneurs willing to embrace and invest in the technology will be having a field day in a few years.