The Internet isn’t just about Facebook, Instagram and online shopping. It’s also a fantastic opportunity. It allows us to do all sorts of things, including making some money.
While we’re usually discussing the various online get-rich-quick scams you’ll encounter in the Wild West of cyberspace, there are legitimate and relatively quick ways to make money. If you have realistic expectations, that is.
It’s unlikely that any of these are going to make you super rich, but if you’re looking to pay off a few bills or may be even save up for the Christmas shopping, these should do the trick.
Here we discuss 10 different ways you can supplement your income using the Internet and the advantages of each.
Do Online Tasks
Yes, you can make some money doing surveys and tasks like that. While many scams try and trick people with unrealistic profits for completing surveys, there is money to be made in this niche providing you stick with reputable sites.
Swagbucks is perhaps the leader in reward-per-task type websites where you can earn digital SwagBucks when you complete various online tasks, and these can be exchanged for gift cards (e.g. Amazon or iTunes) or cashed in through PayPal.
You’re not going to get rich doing this, and sometimes you have to look around before you get a suitable survey where you are eligible to participate.
But it’s easy, anyone can do it and there are lots of different ways you can accumulate points, plus you can refer your friends and get a portion of what they make too. If you’re a regular user, those points add up and there is no reason why this can’t pay off a reasonably sized bill every month or so.
You can sign up here (and get 50 free SwagBucks using the sign up code “FreeGiftCards”)
Do Online Surveys
Inboxdollars.com or InboxPounds.com (for our UK readers) are both pretty similar to SwagBucks, as they are both reward-per-task websites for US and UK users. Both allow those who sign up to make money completing various tasks.
Again, you’re not going to get rich doing this, but it’s easy, anyone can do it and if you stick with it you can pay off some bills from time to time.
Become a YouTube Star
YouTube has been around for a while now and it’s the Internet’s largest video sharing website. But did you know that almost anyone can make money with YouTube by uploading their own videos to the site?
Everyone who visits YouTube will know that nearly all the videos will contain adverts. Either those skippable adverts at the start or pop-ups that appear during the video.
Well, those adverts make money for the user who uploaded the video on YouTube (as well as YouTube themselves) and if people click on those adverts, that makes even more money for the person who uploaded the video! So if you’re uploading videos onto YouTube and those videos are getting lots of views, that’s more money for you! Basically, the more views, the more money you’ll make!
The advantage to this should be obvious from the onset, and that is if you become really popular – and we mean really popular – we’re not just talking pocket change here. Many have gone on to make full time incomes from YouTube (and more!) Basically, the earnings are uncapped. The more views you get, the more money you make.
The downside however is that you really do need to get lots of views, and uploading videos all the time can be hard work meaning you’ll probably have to put more effort into this if you want to earn more than a few bucks a week. However most can (and do) earn a little each week, meaning YouTube can be a good (and fun) way of supplementing an income. (Plus there are some really good books on how to get started making money on YouTube.)
Do Online Freelance Work
Sites like Fiverr are where people go to hire other people cheaply, and it has proven immensely popular. Basically, if you want to get hired, you just list your skill (or set of skills) and people looking for those skills can find you on the site. And you’d be surprised at the range of things people are looking for. Things like completing video games, doing impressions, creating prank videos or even writing short stories. There is no shortage of things you could potentially do for others across the Internet. Just sign up, list your skills and ideally some examples of your work and wait to get hired.
This option won’t be for everyone, as many won’t have skills that are transferable across the Internet but it is certainly worth a look. If you do have a skill in demand, there is potentially no shortage of work and Fiverr allows you to upsell, meaning you can charge more for more work. If you’re good at what you do and your skills are in demand, you can actually make quite a bit of money with Fiverr, though you’re probably going to have to be patient the early days as you build your reputation.
There is a really good guide on getting the move of Fiverr here.
Can you impart knowledge on a particular subject of which you are knowledgeable? Sites like Udemy or SkillShare allow you to create your very own teaching courses and sell them to others. Possible subjects can including playing musical instruments, photography, design, programming, selling online, blogging.
Of course to do this you’ll need to have something you are knowledgeable about that you can teach others across the Internet. How much you can earn very much depends on the quality of your courses and you may need to provide some customer service for those who do sign up and have questions. But if your course is great then you may have hundreds of people sign up, and that can earn you quite the pretty penny!
This basically means buying something online and selling it on for a more expensive price. Simple, right? Well, not really, since you need to have some understanding on when you’re getting a good deal and thus when you’re able to sell on at a profit. Sites like eBay and CraigsList let you sell pretty much what you want (with a few exceptions) so if you have a keen eye for a good deal then there is a great chance you can make a few bucks simply by buying items at a good price and selling them on at a higher rate and pocketing the margin.
This can include arbitrage, which means selling something on a site like eBay at a higher price than the current price on a competitor site like Amazon. If a customer buys an item you list on eBay, then you purchase the cheaper Amazon alternative, ship to the customer and keep the difference.
You need to know if you’re getting a good deal, so you need experience. And arbitrage can be risky since Amazon change their prices all the time and you can inadvertently end up losing money if you don’t know what you’re doing.
There has been a massive rise in the popularity of websites that will let you upload your own designs to create your very own t-shirts which you can sell to the rest of the Internet. The great thing about most of these sites is that you’re only involved with the design process.
The rest, i.e. getting the t-shirts, printing the t-shirts, shipping, customer service, fulfilling payment – is sorted by the website you signed up with. The only thing you do is upload your design, pick what colours or styles you want your design to be one, and the rest is handled by the website. And when your design sells, you get a commission of the sale price! Easy, and FREE!
There are a number of sites that allow you to do this, including Red Bubble, Society 6 and Teepublic. You can even do it on Amazon using their Merch program but this is invitation only as we write this (you can request to be put on the invite list.)
The drawback for most will be that you need to be able to produce designs to at least some sort of standard that people will want to actually buy them. This isn’t something you can really do with MS Paint. You’ll need some graphics software, like Adobe Photoshop. The other drawback would be that not all your designs will sell, and you may need to initiate some of your sales yourself instead of relying on the Internet finding your designs by itself. That may mean a bit of marketing yourself!
But if you have the software and can do a little digital designing, there really shouldn’t be anything stopping you. If your designs sell, this can be a great way of making a passive income. In fact, many people make quite a bit of money this way, it all depends on how much time you put into it and how good you are!
The camera on your iPhone may be pretty good, but if you want to make money taking stock photos – which can be a great way to make a passive income – you may need a DSLR camera. If you have one, great – start taking photos and uploading them to stock websites like Shutterstock.
You’ll need equipment with this one so it may not be for everyone. But if you have a DSLR camera and you know how to take a photo or two, then this is a must-do since it can be really fun. People are always looking for high quality visuals to aid their content, and they often turn to stock photo websites to get them. So make sure they find your photo. You won’t get rich, but it can be a great way to earn a few bucks doing something you enjoy.
Write an eBook
One of the many great things about the Internet is that if you want to write a book, you no longer need a publisher and a book deal. These days, budding authors can write and publish eBooks and get them listed on major websites like Amazon and their Kindle marketplace.
Of course, you’ll need something to write about, as well as the ability to, well, write (unless you wasn’t to hire a ghost author!) You can create your masterpiece in Word and just head over to Amazon to list it, choosing the sell price you desire.
Of course this won’t be for everyone since you need something to write about, and don’t just expect sales to fall into your lap – most people will have to come up with their own marketing strategy to get some sales (though Amazon does offer some tools to help you.)
The good news is that the more sales you get, the higher your eBook gets listed in Amazon, meaning you may get more sales as a result. And of course, the more sales you get, the more money you make. If you pen a bestseller, you can earn some great money!
When it comes to making a little money online, many turn to blogging. Blogging is just writing about a certain subject of your choosing – preferably a subject which you’re passionate about – so the Internet can read it. Blogging can be a great way to make money online as there are a number of ways you can make money from it.
Blogging can be both the most profitable but also the most difficult method of making money on the list. If offers a number of different ways to make you money, but it is also the most difficult to get started with since there is a massive learning curve.
The good news is that there are tons of different ways to set up a blog that are both free/cheap and quick, without the need for being too technically savvy, and the amount you can earn depends on how much time you put in. Many bloggers make money with affiliate links, which means they promote a product related to their blog and get a commission if they start a sale. Other bloggers stick Google Adsense on their site and get paid when their readers click the adverts.
But it’s hard. To make money blogging, you need to generate traffic to your blog and you need to build an audience who enjoy reading what you write. Without that, your blog just won’t make any money. Patience and determination are needed for blogging. Without it you are better off sticking with one of the easier and quicker items on this list.