How to Make Money Online: Introduction
Whether you’re a stay-at-home parent who needs full-time work, or you have a full-time job but need some side cash, there are more ways than ever to earn money online.
In fact, there are so many online money making ideas that it is often difficult for someone who is first researching it to figure out which opportunities to take advantage of. Worse, they fear that easy ways to make money online are not legitimate, which is sometimes the case.
We are about to show you how to make money online with ideas ranging from long-term business ventures to ways to make money online fast when you need extra pocket cash. We will also give you tips and best practices for making money online, as well as how to earn money online in a way that works best for your situation.
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Saying there are more online money-making ideas than ever before is not the same thing as saying that making money online is easy. There are also more qualified people trying to earn money online than ever before, too.
When you’re looking at how to make money online, you have to consider whether you want to make money online fast, or whether you want to start a business that will grow in the future. Legitimate opportunities exist for both, but they are quite different in how much time you need to invest up front and in what kind of expectations you can have for success.
Let’s first take a look at easy ways to earn money online, which generally deals with short-term opportunities.
Easy Ways to Earn Money Online: Selling Goods
Often when people are looking for easy ways to make money online, they have short-term expenses that need to be covered. They are not looking for full-time wages or a full-time commitment.
When looking for easy ways to earn money online, the first thing you can do is to sell what you already own. While garage sales are not entirely a thing of the past, they are old-fashioned and cumbersome when compared to selling your own new or used goods online.
There are a few tidbits to keep in mind when you want to make money online fast:
- Set up a PayPal account to receive money
- Take great photos of the items you want to sell
- Learn how to write engaging descriptions
- Have cheap packaging on hand for mailing
Depending on what you’re selling and who you’re selling to, you may or may not need to mail your items. If you sell locally, set up a public meeting place to make the exchange. Many cities and towns have places specifically for that purpose in front of the police station or city hall. If your items are large, such as furniture, make sure to take safety precautions.
If you’re looking for easy ways to earn money online by selling goods but you don’t have much on hand, you’re not out of luck. By visiting local second-hand shops and flea markets, you can pick up items inexpensively to turn around and sell. Before doing so, look at online sites to see what kind of goods are in demand.
There are a few places you can sell items when you’re looking to earn money online:
Etsy is not for taking what you have on hand that you no longer need and selling it, but instead it caters to handmade and crafty items produced by the seller. If you have a knack for knitting, crocheting, making jewelry, or interesting printables, Etsy might be a great place to set up a shop, though it is likely a slower way to earn money online than Craigslist or eBay.
There are also specialty websites who may be interested in buying your goods:
- Decluttr—books, CDs, DVDs, select tech gadgets
- Homeschoolclassifieds—educational materials
If you have items to sell, there are easy ways to earn money online. That is not to say that sales will come quickly, but the more items you have listed, the better your odds.
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Easy Ways to Earn Money Online: Surveys
Taking surveys on websites will never be a steady source of income, but if you’re looking for easy ways to earn money online, surveys are one thing to consider.
There are many survey websites to choose from. Here are a few of the more well-known and reputable ones:
You must take a close look at what the payouts are when signing up for online surveys. For example, Swagbucks pays in gift cards. If you need to make money online fast, that might not be your best option. Any website that pays in gift cards, however, allows you to put your other cash where you need to because you can shop with gift cards at well-known stores like Walmart.
These types of online money making ideas are best suited for people who have plenty of time on their hands. When researching how to earn money online, this option is good to try while waiting for other choices that may take longer to come through.
How to Make Money Online: Selling Your Skills
When you are looking for easy ways to earn money online, try selling your skills. Inevitably there are things you know how to do that other people or companies are willing to pay for.
Take a moment to consider the skills people compliment you on and think about how you can use that skill for making money online. For example, if you take great pictures, you can sell stock images to a company such as iStock.
Other skills are also in demand on websites like Fiverr, where you can be hired for a $5 “gig.” While $5 is not much, several gigs will add up if you’re looking for easy ways to make money online.
As you begin to figure out how to make money online, make use of the skill set you already possess. If you can do it, there is likely a market for it.
If you’re more serious about how to make money online, you can start to investigate opportunities to build your own career, rather than taking smaller jobs and tasks for side cash.
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How to Make Money Online: Freelancing
When you’re thinking about how to earn money online as a long-term option, building a freelance business is a solid choice. However, it’s not one of the easy ways to make money online, nor is it fast. Many people still consider the rewards of a freelance career worth the investment of time, effort, and oftentimes up-front money.
No matter what your particular skill set is, you can create a market for it. Think about what you’ve done for a previous employer, and chances are you can figure out how to make money online doing the same thing. Of course that doesn’t apply across the board, but it’s time to get creative.
Here are some freelance careers you can build over time:
- Graphic design
- Writing and editing
- Website design
- Virtual assisting
- Health coaching
- Customer service
When deciding how to make money online, many freelancers start by networking locally or with people they know to build a clientele.
Online networking, however, can often be more expedient. Websites such as LinkedIn aid freelancers in making connections. You can also begin by taking jobs on freelance websites such as Upwork to build a reputation.
Freelancing is best suited for people who:
- Can invest in a website for their business
- Do not need to make money online fast
- Are willing to put in time and effort up front
- Want a long-term career
- Have a valuable skill set
Freelancing is not one of the easy ways to earn money online, but it can be the most lucrative for a person who is motivated to start their own business.
When thinking about how to make money online, freelancing can be a good choice for several reasons:
- Ability to set work hours
- Working from home
- Monetizing a skill set you already have
- No salary cap
There are, however, some drawbacks to freelancing when looking at how to make money online:
- Income instability
- Money required up front for office supplies, Internet, and other business expenses
- No paid benefits
Anyone thinking about how to make money online for the long term should at least consider how freelancing could be a solid choice for them.
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How to Make Money Online: Other Opportunities
There are other choices when you are interested in making money online that don’t neatly fit into other categories. They are often referred to as “side hustles.”
- Start a blog
- Create a YouTube channel with advertising
- Write e-books
- Create online courses for websites like Udemy
- Monetize social media
- Tutor students
- Create apps
As long as you don’t need to make money online fast, any of the previous suggestions are legitimate opportunities. However, they often require an up-front commitment of money and there are no guarantees that they will generate an income.
How to Make Money Online: Conclusion
There are so many online money-making ideas that it’s often hard for someone who is just starting out to decide which option is best.
Consider the following questions:
- Do you want to make money online fast, or do you want a career?
- How much money are you willing to invest?
- When do you need to start seeing a payout?
- What skill set do you already possess?
Your answers to these questions will help you determine how to make money online in a way that’s right for you. One thing is certain: whether you are looking for easy ways to earn money online or you want a long-term career, there are more opportunities than ever before.
There is no reason to delay finding a path to making money online in a way that’s perfect for you.
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