My next self-funded business hit $160,000 in revenue in its first year alone. After that first taste of self-made success, I’ve gone on to sign consulting contracts worth tens of thousands of dollars with startups like LinkedIn and Google, launch profitable online courses, and build a following of hundreds of thousands for this blog and my podcast series.
Just a few years ago, I never thought I would be staff writing, and I never even thought about it. But once I began, I really started to enjoy it. I really love to write (yes, I do realize that I’m not the best and I probably should proofread more, but I do like to talk), and writing for different blogs was fun for me. How are people supposed to know that you are looking for a freelance writing position?
If you’re a fitness buff and have the right combination of charisma and business sense, working as a part-time online personal trainer can be both physically and financially rewarding. Once you build up a reputation and client base for yourself, it could easily turn into a full-time endeavor for you. Check out this interview with several fitness blog owners who are making a living online, from MonetizePros. As well, I'd recommend checking out this resource if you want to take this business idea seriously and get started with a business plan for your personal fitness trainer business today.
Using a food delivery service can’t necessarily earn you money, but it can help you save you money if you constantly find yourself throwing out half the food you buy. Food delivery services send a box of food every week with new, sometimes unique vegetables, meat, fruit, and so on. If you don’t have time to shop and want simple meal-prep that leads to a good meal, a food subscription service may be perfect for you.
Build your audience on a course community: If you’re just getting started building an audience for yourself and want to leverage communities already actively looking for content you can choose to host and sell your online course on a site like Skillshare or Udemy. These are easy, cost-effective ways to build an audience and test your niche to see if there’s demand for it.
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Some businesses may be interested in adding other types of paid content to your website. This could include videos, podcasts, or any other material that would work with your site and help a business market itself. Always make sure that paid content isn’t too promotional. It needs to add value to your audience first and foremost, and not just present as an advert.
Creating a video series and selling it as a digital download on your blog, much like an eBook, can be another great seller. A video course, teaching viewers a specific skill or how to achieve a particular activity, may well resonate with your audience. If you are going to go down this route then your videos need to be as professional as possible so you should consider investing in some video and lighting equipment, as well as editing software.
Write and publish an eBook. You don’t need a traditional publisher and financial backing to publish your own book anymore. In fact, Amazon.com makes it possible for you to publish your own eBook and sell it independently – with no financial investment on your part. And with Kindle eBook publishing, your book will appear on Kindle stores worldwide within 24-48 hours. Just be prepared to market it yourself on social media, your blog, or elsewhere if you expect to generate sales.
If you’re serious about making money selling things online, it’s pretty much impossible to not recommend Shopify. The platform gives you everything you need to get your online store up and running in less than a day including a custom domain, beautiful templates (so you don’t need design skills), secure payment options, and they can even take care of marketing and shipping for you. Whether you’re promoting your own products, designs, or curating other products for people in your niche, Shopify is the best option for powering your online store.
Could you make an extra $200 per month? Sure. How about an extra $1000 per month? How would that change your life? To most, it would make a monumental difference. But what if we were talking thousands more per month or even tens of thousands more? How would that alter the trajectory of your life? Clearly, you can make money on the internet. You just have to decide how much of your time it's worth.
My local Craigslist.org is the first place I go to sell something. It's best for items you think will appeal to everyone (therefore justifying the smaller audience) and large items that can't be shipped. Craigslist.org is great for taking your yard sale items online for local sales. For example, a friend recently bought two fans from people that live close to him. These one-off type items do very well on Craigslist. Just remember to use common sense and be safe out there.
If you live near a university, there are likely all sorts of research studies looking for participants. While I was an undergrad at Virginia Tech, I got paid $500 to participate in a 6-week dietary study. The study provided all my meals and paid me, but I had to eat a 5,000 calorie diet of 50% fat for 6 weeks, plus I had multiple muscle biopsies, urine/blood testing, etc.
Over one summer, I was asked to be a staff writer for a blog. The e-mail came out of nowhere, but after I received it, I started looking into staff writing further. Having a blog (as talked about before), helped people find me and consider me for their staff writing positions. After that initial e-mail, I then posted on Yakezie (a personal finance community with a great forum) and stated that I was searching for a staff writing position. After I made the post on the forum, I received a couple of e-mails and this is what launched my staff writing career. The power of throwing yourself out there and just asking was definitely helpful for me.
Pro tip for first-timers: Carefully consider the pay rates that are listed. Penny Hoarder Carson Kohler has used the platform to find freelance writing gigs, and she reports low rates — like $3 for 500 written words. It’s probably not worth it. (And, yes, you’ll have to scroll through a whole lot of these low-paying listings to find the good ones.)
Earn extra money at CashCrate.com by taking part in daily research surveys, doing your shopping online, and referring other members to their program. There’s some money to be made with CashCrate.com completing the free offers, but the real cash comes from the referral program. Read our CashCrate review to learn more or just Sign up for Free with CashCrate.
Use the law of supply and demand to your advantage. Most of us are familiar with the law of supply and demand--the more there is of something, the cheaper it is; conversely, the rarer the product or service, the more expensive it is. However, other than when we get to a toy store before sunrise to get on line for the latest fad toy that kids can't get enough of, we don't really apply the law of supply and demand to our own lives--particularly our careers. For example, if you're aspiring to do something that many, many other people want to do (so much so that they do it for free, as a hobby) then it will be far more challenging for you to make money doing it. On the other hand, if you do something that most people don't want to do, or if you get very good at doing something most people don't do all that well, then you can make a whole lot more money. In other words, choose a career in pharmacy over photography.
If you are a fast reader and have a good grasp of grammar and language then editing may be a good freelance role for you. Editing is a great way to quickly make money online, and there are always editing jobs available on freelance job sites. And the best part? Editor’s usually get paid per word, so the faster you can check through work the more money you will make per hour.
If you're an exact size 4 or the perfect size 8, fashion designers need you to try on their designs and give feedback on what does and doesn't work for your shape. The pay is great—between $2,000 and $3,000 a day—but you need an agent. MSA Models (570 Seventh Ave at 41st St; 212-944-8896, msamodels.com) is the gold standard and holds open casting calls (show up at 10am on Tuesdays). Mary-Evy McNenny, a 51-year-old Upper East Sider, has works as a fit model for Lafayette 148 and Ellen Tracy—and she admits it's not easy. "You cannot lose or gain weight. Just a few pounds and things won't fit the same," she says. "I weigh myself every day. When I go on vacation, I bring a scale in my carry-on bag."
We like Stash because they give you $5 cash just for signing up!. Once you download their app, you are asked to select a portfolio of stocks and ETFs, based on who you are and what you care about. For example, you may be passionate about space exploration or tech companies or environmentally conscious corporations. Based on what you say, Stash will recommend a portfolio. They charge only $1 a month and the app serves you regular investment education articles so you are learning as you go.
Every successful business has an automated sales funnel. Yet, so many businesses are completely unaware of the power of an effective funnel. Sales funnels provide automation in the sales process. They help you build a relationship with your audience and develop a bond with the consumer. There are plenty of tools you can use to build a sales funnel, but the world's most successful businesses often create custom-coded funnels.
Small crowdsourcing, online, and real-world tasks, sometimes called micro jobs, have become an increasingly popular way to pick up extra cash. Short-task websites offer a way for buyers and sellers of services to connect. These gigs generally don't take much effort and, as a result, don't usually pay much. However, if your goal is to earn a few extra dollars, then micro jobs may be just what you need.
If you have a college degree and the skills to tutor students online in math, science, English or social studies, this job may fit you perfectly. Go toTutor.com—tutors who work for the company and have passed their probationary period earn $10 to $14 an hour. According to Durst, "Skype and other web interface tools are bringing English language instructors face-to-face with students from around the world." Tryispeakuspeak.com,openenglish.com to get started.
To get started with side hustling, let your friends and family know about your desire for more work. Your network is your net worth in this regard, and can play a powerful role in helping you secure more gigs. It can be surprising how much your network can propel things further simply by asking. But you have to take the first step and ask! Send out personalized emails and post on social media.
While many people start a home business to create or replace a full-time income, some people simply want to generate a little extra money to pay debt; save for a rainy day; or use as mad money, a sum of money reserved for small expenses or impulsive purchases. In the past, those who wished to make extra money needed to go out to find a second job. Fortunately, times have changed and people are thinking creatively about how to make extra money from home. They may be selling their services such as driving or shopping, skills such as writing or sales, or used items such as furniture, technology, or clothing to bring in extra income. Websites designed specifically to assist you in getting rid of unwanted items or selling your services or skills can help.
I mentioned an idea above to create an online store but you could also just declutter your house and sell things you no longer use (CDs, DVDs, kitchen appliances, etc.). There is a platform that makes this really easy, it's called Decluttr. You download their app and scan the item and Declutter will tell you the price at which to sell. Check out Decluttr (or for more information, read our Decluttr review!) Listing items on eBay is of course another option, sign up by going to www.eBay.com.
Sites like CookApp, Cookening, EatWith and MealSharing are to restaurants what Airbnb is to hotels. Sign up as a host to earn dough by cooking and serving a meal to guests in your home. It's up to you what you want to cook and how many people you can accommodate. Cooks are paid directly through the site, so no cash ever changes hands. Earning potential: $50-$100 per meal
Once you’ve gathered a list, put together a template outreach email (as you’ll be doing this over and over) that’s short and clear with expectations. Tell your potential interviewee who you are, what your podcast is about, and what you’re asking of them. Do a few test interviews with friends and family to make sure everything is being recorded at the quality you want and then book your first episode.
The secret to making money isn't working at a high-paying job, it’s finding creative solutions to people’s problems, and it doesn't take a fancy degree to do that. To get your creative juices flowing, check out these common and not-so-common ways of lining your pockets. Below that, you’ll also find more general financial advice as well as some money-making ideas for kids.
Writing an eBook and selling it on your blog can be a great money maker. Your eBook should be directly relevant to your blog’s content so you can sell your book to your existing audience. Creating a recipe eBook for a food blog or an eBook full of training plans to complement your fitness site are just a couple of examples that have the potential to sell.
A popular tactic to make money on social media is to pay for advertising affiliate products. Create ads for particular affiliate products that are big sellers and have a high yield. Then target these ads at specific custom audiences to ensure your ads are viewed by those who will have an interest in the product you are promoting. If viewers click through your from advert to the product page and make a purchase then you will earn an affiliate fee.
To get started with Amazon affiliate marketing you will need to sign up with Amazon Affiliates. Then subtly market products on your site that are relevant to your niche and will be of interest to your audience. Make sure you only endorse high-quality products. If your visitors make a purchase on your recommendation but are not impressed with the item, you could quickly lose followers.
If you've developed valuable skill sets or picked up certifications within your industry over the years, offering your consulting services to local business owners can be a lucrative way to make money online. Whether you're an expert marketer, business strategist, or manufacturing aficionado, there's likely a local business owner who's willing to pay you to help them solve an issue with their company. Start with this 18-step checklist to becoming a local business consultant from Karyn Greenstreet and then use my guide to crafting an effective cold email to convince them to hire you.
Everyone says you're a fantastic writer, so isn't it about time you got paid? Good writing is still in demand says Durst, especially for online content. For the best sites tryJournalismJobs.com,About.com seeks "Guides" in a broad area of topics, andMediaBistro.com. For blogging jobs, tryproblogger.net. If you have experience as a freelance copy editor, writer or proofreader, go toeditfast.com. Rates vary between $15 and $25 an hour.
One simple way to make money from home is to help others complete tasks as a virtual assistant. If you're highly organized and can properly manage your time, then becoming a virtual assistant presents a low-friction entry point into the digital services industry. You can easily perform these functions as a remote worker no matter where you live or are from.
Become a proofreader. All kinds of businesses hire professional proofreaders to look over their copy and content for errors before they publish. This side hustle is one that could work for nearly anyone since you can work from home provided you have a computer and an internet connection. You can find online proofreading jobs through websites like Indeed.com and FlexJobs.com