Making Money Metal Detecting Today (Step by Step)

Need a detailed guide on making money metal detecting?

If so, this is the right guide for you.

Without wasting time, let’s cover EVERYTHING you should know about making a living through treasure hunting.

Can you make money metal detecting?

So, is it possible to make money through metal detecting? Or do we have people already making money metal detecting?

The straight answer is yes.

Metal detecting offers lots of opportunities for treasure hunters and investors to make money. Aspiring treasure hunters can make money metal detecting if they master the skill, e.g., through selling their finds for a fortune. We have dealers and museums that compensate treasure hunters who recover lost treasures.

We’ll cover other ways you can earn money through metal detecting.

What are the most expensive finds ever found with a metal detector?

Let’s quickly go over some of the most expensive finds that have been recovered:

  • Black Swan Project. The Odyssey Marine Exploration used detectors to recover silver and gold coins which were valued at $500 million. The treasure was lost in 1804.
  • Derrynaflan Hoard. Michael web and his son recovered in County Tipperary. They were compensated 50,000 Irish pounds which was a fortune back then.
  • Battle of Hastings Coins Hoard. Lisa Grace and Adam Staples recovered the treasure back in 2019. The treasure was valued for $6.5 million.
  • Staffordshire Hoard. It comprises of Anglo-Saxon silver and gold. A guy name Terry Herbert discovered it in a Staffordshire field. The treasure was valued at $4.6 million.
  • Spanish Fleet gold coins. William Bartlett and his team went on a treasure hunting expedition in 2015 and found treasure worth $4.5 million. The gold coins stayed in the water for nearly 300 hundred years.

As you can see, there are many expensive treasures that detectorists have recovered across the world.

Let’s move to the next section.  

Ways to make money with metal detecting

Let’s look at all the ways people making money through metal detecting.

Sell your finds.

The first way we mentioned before was through selling your finds. You can sell them to museums or even online. Some hunters have partnered with platforms like eBay. And here are some of the coins they’re selling on the platform.

You can also earn some money through selling your finds to traders. Assuming you go metal detecting in a private beach and walk away with an expensive gold ring, you can sell it if you don’t want to keep it. How? Look for dealers who buy rings in your local area.

If one day you decide to purse treasure hunting full-time, you should consider auctioning your finds. Well, treasure hunting companies like Mel Fisher have been doing it. The company gives everyone a chance to own some vintage treasure lost in places like the Atocha.

Here are the interesting finds they sell:

So, with the right metal detecting gear, you can go scuba diving in spots where ships sank.

Like Mel’s company, selling your finds will be easy as creating an online store and driving traffic to it.

Sell your services like a pro

Metal detecting is a powerful skill. And selling the skill is the best way to earn money and get a quick return on your investment.

There are several ways to sell your metal detecting skills. Let’s discuss them.

  • Help others locate lost items. Expensive items fall off people’s hands while walking or having fun at the beach. Some people are so attached to the jewelry they buy and they’ll need help with recovering them. That’s where you’ll come in. People find it cheaper to hire a detectorist than a metal detecting company.
  • Sell your detecting services. For instance, you can quote $20-$30/hour to aid your neighbors find pins in their property. You can also be hired by police units to recover evidence hidden in the ground, house, and walls.
  • Apply for a job. You can work with a research institute like museums. Some of them still need experienced detectorists to find valuable minerals or vintage objects in different places.

Note: if you prove to be good at recovering people’s finds and market your services well, you might end up getting more leads than you need.

Try different metal detecting businesses

We have different business that you can start in the metal detecting field and we’ll cover them all.

The first one is through being a reseller. You can buy metal detectors and sell them locally.  But first, you have to do market research in your area and see if your idea is viable. If there’s a gap, open a local store. Many people still prefer to shop offline. They might flock your store to test the detectors and buy the best fit.

To scale your earnings, you’ll want to venture into drop shipping metal detecting products. You’ll have to look for a reliable supplier, open a Shopify store and ship the products. Say you later get bored with the business or want to venture into other fields, you can sell it on platforms like Empire Flippers.  

Second, you can create a side-hustle around renting metal detectors. Some outdoor enthusiasts go to trafficked places like sandy beaches but hate the idea of traveling with metal detectors. You can buy beginner-friendly models and rent them out. Depending on the seasons, your detectors will pay themselves off a few months after launching your business.

Side note: assuming you get tired of selling other people’s products, you’ll have to start thinking of creating your brand like Bounty Hunter and Fisher. It may seem impossible but it’s doable if you put your mind to it.

Work with reputable companies

If at one time you fall in love with treasure hunting, a good route to go for and make money doing what you love is working with treasure hunting companies.

Here are some of the treasure hunting companies worth working for:

  • Mel Fisher
  • Ship Wrecks
  • Columbus America
  • Odyssey Marine.  

Some of them often look for investors and experienced treasure hunters. And the opportunities are rewarding if you can go for both.

Once you’re confident with your skills, apply to join their expeditions. The best thing about working with treasure hunting companies is you’ll travel and hunt in different places. You might even be part of the crew that makes history someday.

Share your knowledge (Here’s how)

Here’s what happens in most scenarios:

Guy XYZ starts metal detecting today and perfects the craft after 1-3 years. He thinks to himself, “How can I help others get better at the hobby?”. Some start YouTube channels to help beginners hone their skills. Others go for blogs.  

My point?  You’ll always have something to teach newbies and amateur detectorists if you get serious about this hobby.

The good news is, the internet gives everybody a voice including you to share what you’ve learned in the course of your metal detecting journey. We have detectorists who’ve been doing metal detecting for decades and they help others in metal detecting forums.

The easiest way to educate others is to start a blog. You only need to pay for hosting, get a domain and hire someone to design your website in platforms like Upwork or Fiverr. It’s well and good if you have the tech skills to make your website.

After you set up your blog, you should start sharing your knowledge and drive traffic to it through ways like search engine optimization, and social media platforms. With time, you’ll gather an audience and that’s the best time to start monetizing the traffic. You’ll partner with affiliate marketing programs like Amazon’s program, KellyCode and Shareasale dealing with metal detecting products. By recommending products that will genuinely help your audience, you’ll earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

But if you hate writing, YouTube is a good alternative for you. You’ll earn through ads, number of views and the affiliate links you’ll place below the description.

You can also consider going the route of writing treasure hunting books and selling them after you’ve built an audience. Examples of good treasure hunting books online include Lost Treasure Tales of Rockies by Perry Eberhardt. The good thing about selling physical products like books is that the income is passive. And you can scale it through guest posting on other blogs or advertising online.

Start your company

Most employees in workplaces eventually branch off to start their own businesses after sometime. And that can apply to you if you get lucky to work for a treasure hunting company. You’ll have learnt a lot in the expeditions.

You can organize expeditions like hunting for treasures hidden in the woods or sea to look for treasures the way companies like Mel Fishers Limited do.

Of course, it takes a lot of hard work and patience to set up and run a successful treasure hunting company. But you’ll easily find mentors to guide you through your journey if you choose to work with a treasure hunting company first.

Do collabos

People are already making money through collaborating with brands online. Normally, most brands like to use user-generated content to market their products and the new releases. And the experienced detectorists are the ones who benefit the most.

So, here’s the best route to take:

  1. Get good at metal detecting
  2. Launch your blog or make videos,
  3. gather an audience.

Big brands like Bounty Hunter will automatically reach out to you for collaborations.

Well, collaborating with them is an easy way to own expensive detectors without buying them. They can ship you one of their detectors like the Equinox 800 and ask you to review it.

Notably, if you watch YouTube videos done by some detectorists online, you’ll realize brands give them detectors for free in exchange for reviews. It’s a win-win. Other brands will even pay you to give an honest opinion about their new products.

Pro tip: cold pitch a brand let them know about you and your audience. Your pitch will be easily accepted if you have a huge audience.

Sell space

Ads can generate a huge passive income if create a blog or YouTube channel and grow it organically. You’ll be compensated depending on the impressions or clicks that your blog generates.  

You can join trusted platforms like Ezoic, Google Ads. We also recommend Amazon’s ad program where they advertise their products on your blog’s space.

Alternatively, create an advertisement page on your blog and let people know you’re open to collaborations.

Create courses

Many people prefer to have the whole roadmap to something they want to start and that’s why they love buying online courses.

The market for treasure hunting courses hasn’t been tapped well. So, you can make a killing if you’ve been in the game for long. You can get started with the hobby, learn its ins and outs then create a course to share:  

  • Rare metal detecting tips and secrets
  • Walk throughs on how to metal detectors right.
  • Advice on costly mistakes to avoid.

The best part is, you can easily scale your income from online courses. You should start with creating a simple course one online course platforms like Teachable, skillshare or Udemy.

For instance, Aaron Linsdau has made a course to help beginners find valuable hidden in the ground.

Later, you can experiment with other monetization models like subscriptions, etc.

Work with metal detecting brands

Many brands can’t resist hiring top talent. And that includes top ones like Fisher, Minelab and Bounty Hunter. Maybe you’re good at creating blog content or you have the right personality they can use in their videos.

They can, therefore, hire you to teach their audience on their blogs or create informational videos. But how will they find if you don’t pitch your services? Assuming you pitch them, you might come at the right time when they’re recruiting. So, connect with the recruiters and let them know about how you can help their company achieve its objectives.

Test your creativity

If you don’t know, the audience for metal detecting products is huge. So, there are others ways to make money from metal detecting without doing the actual detecting.

For instance, you can launch your own brand and sell tees, mugs and other accessories printed with humorous metal detecting language.

Here are some of the tees related to metal detecting that are being sold on Amazon:

The other way to make money is to use your skill and creativity to make and sell metal detecting stuff like finds pouch, harnesses, bands then sell them on Amazon, Etsy and eBay.

Tip: look for gaps in the market and squeeze your way up there. You might get yourself another new source of income.

Consider doing this

You can get past creating courses and YouTube videos to launching your shows.

Once you gain traction after making YouTube videos, you can target lucrative contracts with TV stations to showcase your treasure hunting skills and expeditions.

Some TV station can directly reach out to you if they notice your talent and skills. But a better way to increase your odds of success creating shows is to look pitch the TV stations.

By doing your shows, you’ll be marketing your brand and getting new leads and sales for your business.

Last word on making money metal detecting

We’ve exhausted the profitable business ideas you can get into through metal detecting.

Some of them selling your finds are easy. You only need a good detector to start the hobby and search for treasure in the right places. Your detector might make you enough to cover the cost of buying it and that’s how it supposed to be.

The other ways to make money metal detecting like starting a treasure hunting company need time and patience.

So, it’s now up to you to decide the best way you’d love to earn money through the hobby. Do you prefer to look for lost treasure? Or earn commissions through sharing knowledge? The ultimate decision depends on you.

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