How To Make Money Online: The Community Business Model

Online, the community business model is a business model which generates revenue via the leveraging of a websites' community, or people.

This business model relies on a website having a community. This can be a community of users such as is the case at, or a community of developers such as is the case at   And Internet community, for the purposes of this business model, are not much different from physical communities or professional associations, where everybody is a member for a common reason.

The revenue model for a community-based website or online venture and Tails you charging the online user for some service. For example, Facebook charges some users in the United States to send emails to certain places in the Middle East or Asia. Another example maybe a website that acts as a forum for doctors, where they charge doctors to interact with each other on topics concerning medicine. Another example would be a niche website, like the one you are reading this on, which has articles on internet development and e-commerce solutions, where the community of Twitter followers and blog readers can be sold packages that they may need.

The essence of a community business model is bringing people together for a common denominator. For example, on Flickr everyone goes on to their sites to share photos. A website blog or forum where users can go on and publish their opinions about a certain niche, is also an example of a community business model; as long as they have figured out how to charge the community or make money from the activity that the community produces.

The most successful community business models did not develop a community in itself, rather it leveraged an already existing community. For example Facebook targeted Harvard students at the beginning of their venture, this is similar to Law Blogs targeting States Bar Associations to continue conversations and meetings online. In both of these examples, a physical community already present was just shifted online. With the attention and use of a large community, comes the possibility of generating revenues from them.
While some community business models charge users, and others sell advertising, some relies solely on donations. This is the case for some public radio stations online and forums.

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The PushYourRank Team
Author: Nicholas Coriano

About The Author: Nicholas Coriano is an Entrepreneur, Web Developer, Social Media Marketer, SEO Consultant and the founder of this blog and The  While developing websites for his own businesses and marketing his entrepreneurial ventures online, he began blogging useful tips and "how-to" articles on for reference purposes.  To retain Nicholas for help with your Website, Social Media, SEO or other online/technology needs, email

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