Whether you are looking to start a small side hustle or are willing to invest a lot of time into a second job, there are opportunities abound online. Options range from making a few bucks taking surveys to potentially building a second career creating a blog that might draw some advertising.
When it comes to online opportunities, we have found that the old adage stands: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. We’ve sorted through all the tricks and cons and compiled a list of five legit ways you can make money online.
This compilation includes links to opportunities, brief details on how they work, and what to look out for when signing up for these gainful opportunities.
Your opinion is a valuable commodity on the internet. There are a multitude of sites that offer free memberships to take online surveys and earn rewards. These rewards come in the form of small amounts of cash funneled to you via PayPal or as gift cards earned by building up points.
You are not going to make a lot of money quickly by using these sites – more like a few bucks per survey – but if you are burning a lot of time on the internet, consider this option to help make that time more fruitful.
If you are going this route, just be careful. No legitimate site is going to ask you for money, your social security number, credit card information, or full address. Here are a few trustworthy sites to consider:
Some other survey sites, like Swagbucks and Inbox Dollars, allow you to earn money by more than just taking surveys. Options include watching videos, shopping online, searching the web, or playing games.
In addition to offering surveys, 20|20 Research also hosts in-person and online roundtable market research discussions where you can earn substantially more (between £20 and £250, according to the site) by simply sharing your opinion on products. User Testing will pay you £5 to spend about 20 minutes navigating a website or an app, completing some assigned tasks, and then providing verbal feedback.
Make Money by Selling Your Stuff
It’s basically an online garage sale. From furniture (new, used or antique) to automotives (parts and vehicles) to video games and electronics, post anything you want to sell on Craigslist. Each post is free – unless you are posting a job – and you can classify the item so it lands in the right category on the page for potential buyers. This is a good way to sell items locally, but be wary of anyone who wants you to ship items; they may be scammers looking to take your stuff without paying for it.
If you are looking to sell your items to a wider audience, consider using the online auction site eBay. The auction format can even generate bidding wars that drive up the price of your sale item. Another benefit is that the site has more control over the flow of money than Craigslist, so scammers are less likely to catch you by surprise. That security comes at a cost though; eBay keeps a commission on your sale.
Make Money by Selling Your Skills
If you have the time and talent to invest and can carve out a topic that will drive traffic to your blog site, you can make money by selling ads or products through the site. Most free blog-creation sites won’t allow you to monetise your content, so make sure you are using a site that doesn’t have these restrictions in place. Here are some sites that come recommended by blog experts:
- WordPress.org (will need to include a hosting site like Bluehost.com)
- Wix (paid version)
For creative-types, the internet is flush with opportunities to sell your wares. Crafters and artists can sell handmade goods by creating their own online storefront through Etsy. According to Etsy, more than 33 million people have purchased items from the site. Etsy charges 20 cents to post an item for sale, as well as a 5 percent transaction fee and 3 percent payment processing fee after selling the item.
Sites like Zazzle allow you to create your own designs that can then be printed on a variety of products for sale on the site. Zazzle will pay you a royalty fee for any design purchased on their products and it is free to create your storefront.
Skilled shutterbugs can sell their photos online through sites like Shutterstock and 500 px. Shutterstock also purchases footage clips, illustrations, and custom music. These sites are looking for unique, quality images that have commercial value, so don’t be surprised if your amateur photos are declined.
If you work in a client-based field, you can leverage the internet to help you connect with clients on sites like UpWork or Fiverr. They will also help ensure you get paid. The sites connect clients with workers in a variety of skills, from writing to software development.
Flexible workplaces are becoming more commonplace, and that means more people are working from home. If you’re a construction worker or bartender, you’re out of luck here. But if all you need is to leverage your internet connection to do an efficient job, you can search on sites like FlexJobs and We Work Remotely to find a job that doesn’t require a commute. If you want to expand your search, visit any of the popular job search sites, such as Monster or Indeed, and use filters and keywords such as remote, flexible, and work from home.
Make Money by Shopping (and Saving)
Earn cash back on products you were going to buy anyway by purchasing through cash-back sites. Cash-back sites turn the consumerism and convenience of online shopping into an easy way for users to make some money. Ebates, for example, connects you with retailers. Those retailers then give Ebates a commission that Ebates splits with you.
Another popular cash-back site is BeFrugal, where you can earn up to 40 percent cash back (this is the extreme, most percentages are way under this number) on purchases from about 5,000 stores. Comparatively, Ebates provides cash back from about 2,500 stores.
Make Money by Making Wagers
If you live in or are travelling through a state that allows online gambling, then you’re in luck (pun intended). The legal online betting landscape is complicated, but you can check out this summary from Play USA to get an idea of where you can go to place your bets.
Gamble on Yourself
Losing weight while making money is the dream. HealthyWage offers individuals or teams the opportunity to wager on their own weight loss. Weight-loss challenges offer a variety of monetary returns if you successfully reach milestones determined by HealthyWage. Of course, if you lose the bet, the money you put out will be gone. Financial incentives, however, can be a good motivator.