It is unbelievable how many people are not just making money online, but making a living. A decade ago the Internet was still in its infancy and did not have much to offer in the way of jobs. These days making a lucrative profit on the web is as simple as having a good idea or having a strong work ethic.
There are many benefits to making money online. For instance, you will save money on gas and pajamas can be the dress code. How much you earn is up to you, and it depends on what you want to do and how much effort you put into it. Some people earn a little extra cash to supplement an outside income, while others have found a way to make all of their money via the Internet (Read: 10 Ways to Make the Capital You Need for Your First Business).
The hardest thing about making money online is getting started. Because the Internet is so accessible there are also thousands and thousands of people looking to make money just like you. To earn the big bucks you have to be creative, work very hard, and find a way to set yourself apart from the crowd.
To give you a head start, here are a few ideas of how to make money online.
- Freelance. One of the most popular ways to earn cash online, freelancing is accessible to anyone who has a skill set others need. Writers and graphics artists were the ones that first populated this job landscape, but now anyone from accountants to computer programmers can find work.
The main thing is having a skill that you are very good at, preferably one that other people can utilize in an online environment, and knowing how to market that skill. There are freelancing websites of all kinds out there, so start Googling and try to find a niche one catered to your skill set so you will have a more focused clientele.
- Teach and tutor. This option is particularly popular with people trying to pay their way through college. Utilizing the skills from whatever degree you are pursuing (or that you have already graduated with) you can make money through tutoring and teaching websites. In addition to a fast internet connection, most websites require a web camera for easy video chatting between tutor and client.
People who specialize in math, science, and finance skills are always in high demand for online tutoring. Having fluent knowledge of another language is also a great way to find work as a tutor, especially if you are skilled enough to teach English as a second language to foreigner entrepreneurs and businesspeople.
- Design T-shirts. Selling your art is one way to make money online, but in a fun twist you can also sell it as a T-shirt design instead of a standalone piece. Sites like CafePress.com and Threadless.com allow you to upload your own designs to try and sell. You can create the art in whatever style you want and on whatever topic you want. A lot of people have had great success by rifting on pop culture in a whimsical manner.
- Become an affiliate marketer. If you have a knack for sales then you can become an affiliate marketer. Many different websites, such as Amazon.com and eBay.com, have affiliate programs available for people who qualify. Basically you promote various products and services that the website offers, and every time someone subscribes to your sales pitch and buys the product/service then you get a cut. Commissions and contract terms vary from site to site, so be sure to check each one out before you sign up for anything.
- Complete online surveys. Companies and businesses are always looking for customer feedback, and one way they get it is by paying people to complete online surveys about their products and services. You can’t find these surveys by going to specific companies. Instead you have to find general survey and opinion websites, like SurveySavvy.com or OpinionOutpost.com.
The payout for each survey you complete isn’t very high – usually somewhere between $0.20 and $1, although longer surveys will pay more. Most people cannot make a career in filling out online surveys, but they can add a few bucks here and there to complement their income. The great thing about these surveys is that they are short and easy to fill out, meaning easy cash in your pocket.
- Sell your stuff. A lot of people are finding extra revenue in selling their unwanted stuff online. This is a popular method because you can put up anything for sell online (shoes, chairs, movies, yoga mats – whatever) and there is almost guaranteed to be a buyer. The three big websites in this category are Amazon, eBay, and Craigslist.
Most people have to get used to selling things online. They often set their prices much too high and have to figure out a happy medium. Look at the prices of similar objects that other people are selling to get an idea of how to price your stuff. This also isn’t a steady way to make money because you never know when your product is going to sell. However, some people make a living out of it by buying popular objects wholesale and then selling them at a higher price. If you are going to do this then the key is being able to guess what is going to be trending before it becomes popular.
- Sell your own crafts. This method is like a combination of selling your art and selling your stuff. Instead of selling things you already own, you create new things and find a website on which to sell. There are many different places on the Internet to do this, but the most popular right now is the website Etsy.com. The only catch is that on some websites you have to pay a small listing fee and then a small commission when a product sells.
The sky is pretty much the limit when it comes to selling your own crafts. Any kind of jewelry or woodworking is very popular, but so are a lot of other things. Etsy alone has about thirty different categories in which to sell, ranging from glass and ceramics to dolls and toys. The creative and artistic will thrive here, and this is a great way to make some money off of a hobby you already enjoy doing.
- Write an eBook. Obviously this way of making money is mainly for writers; however, other people with exceptional knowledge on specific subjects can also earn some cash. There has been no better time than now for self-publishing. It has become so popular that you don’t even need your own website. Amazon, Kobo, and Barnes and Noble are just a few of the places that set you up with your own space for simple self-publishing. Just read up on commission rates so you know what you are getting into.
Many people have found great success in writing eBooks. Some of most prominent writers earn a couple million dollars a year. The best way to earn lots of money quickly is to know what is popular in fiction. The thriller and mystery genres make up over half of eBooks sold. The latest culture crazes like zombies and supernatural teen romance are also huge sellers right now (if you don’t mind selling your soul a little bit to write a vampire love story).
- Earn Ad Revenue for your blog. This way of making money can be a gold mine for anyone who has a blog and has followers of that blog. The way it works is ad networks will allow you to put their ads on your blog. Anytime someone who is reading your blog clicks on the ad, you get paid. Google AdSense is the most popular ad network, but Amazon also has a program.
This is like being an affiliate marketer, except you get to write on whatever you enjoy instead of selling a specific product or service. The commissions will start small but the more popular your blog becomes, the more followers you will have. With this increase in followers comes an increase in revenue. Very popular blogs can earn thousands of dollars each month from ad revenue.
The Internet is a fantastic place to make money because there is so much out there and almost everyone uses the web. There are websites that offer work for every conceivable type of job, so all you have to do is figure out what you are good at and get plugged in. If you have had particular success earning money online, please feel free to share in the comment section below.