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23 Effective Strategies for Making Money Online

October 31, 2019

More people are turning to the web to earn a living.

The prospect of making money online opens the door to an attractive new lifestyle. It can provide a means to make a little extra cash or be the start of a new career.

Online money-making strategies

Some of these strategies below require specialized skills. Others are open to anyone with a little bit of free time. Whatever your goal, here's 23 ways that you can make money online.

1. Become a freelancer

If you already have a marketable skill, the best way to make money online is by offering your services online as a freelancer. There are plenty of online marketplaces where you can offer your services. They range from well-known sites like Fiverr and Upwork through to niche-specific sites.

Freelance writing is an excellent way to earn money online. A certain amount of effort is required to set up your online presence. If you don't already have a portfolio, the easiest way to get writing gigs is through freelance marketplaces or middleman agencies like Copify.

copify landing page

If you speak more than one language, you could set yourself up as a translator. Businesses need to be able to communicate, and there is a need for translators. 

Other popular sectors for freelancing include working as a programmer, graphic designer, or customer service operator. Of the three, programming is the most well-paid. Many businesses want freelance contractors to program for them on fixed-term contracts.

If you know an in-demand programming language, it's easy to set yourself up in that niche. Your best bet for finding work as a freelance coder is a mixture of international recruitment agencies and word-of-mouth.

2. Get a remote job

Working from home or traveling the world as a digital nomad has become increasingly common as a result of the internet. More people can have a flexible lifestyle. For example, you might work in a different country than your clients. Thanks to the internet, all you need is a stable connection to deliver your work.

Remote work is a popular option for employers too. It can reduce the cost of wages while reducing other expenses like office space. Check out FlexJobs to find 100% remote full-time work in your niche. 

Learn how the G2 content team tackled #WorkFromHomeWeek, and see what steps you can take to becoming a remote work expert.

Learn more ways to manage and maximize remote work.    Get work-life balance  →

3. Offer paid services

Making money online doesn’t have to involve working online. From life coaching to plumbing, advertising your service online is a sure-fire way of generating extra revenue. You can also set your fees.

You can earn extra money as a tradesmen, but you can also generate income doing menial tasks like ironing or gardening. Check out TaskRabbit, and you'll be amazed by what some people are willing to pay others to do for them.

4. Sell professional services

You can turn specialist knowledge into money using popular Q&A sites such as LivePerson and JustAnswer. JustAnswer claims that their top experts make upward of $1,000 per month.

Their experts cover a wide range of niches. For example, they have expert lawyers, accountants, doctors, mechanics, and vets, to name just a few of the professions.

5. Become a rideshare driver

Uber, Lyft, and a host of other apps offer an avenue into the world the self-employed taxiing. With a vehicle and a smartphone, you can set yourself up to work whenever you want.

uber landing page

Of course, you have to fit specific criteria to work in this sector. Most importantly, you have to be over the age of 21. The upshot is that you get to set your hours, which makes this an option for making money online around your existing commitments.

6. Alternatively, become a courier

An alternative to working as a taxi driver is working as a courier. The most popular platforms in North America include Deliveroo, Wolt, and Uber Eats. 

courier page

Working as a courier is slightly more flexible than working as a taxi driver. Couriers can use a car, motorbike, scooter, or bicycle. Beware, flexibility goes both ways. These platforms rarely offer regular hours. You're also technically freelance, which means you're responsible for your equipment and any tax liabilities.

7. Teach English online

Working as a teacher is a favorite of digital nomads. Many online agencies will allow you to teach English online, with no formal requirements other than being a native speaker. Plus, demand is high. The best agencies will provide lesson plans and pay you up to $30 an hour to deliver them to students. To qualify, you need to teach in a suitable environment and meet their dress code. 

Even if you're not a native English speaker, you can make decent money teaching your language online. The demand is lower, and less infrastructure exists, but you can expect higher hourly fees from teaching to professionals.

8. Offer one-on-one tutoring

Languages aren't your only option to make money teaching online. You can turn just about any expertise into cash in this way. Common examples include cooking, photography, and playing musical instruments.

More academic pursuits are a lucrative avenue too. There's no shortage of children out there who need extra help with their SATs.

What's great about this approach to making money online is that you can pretty much set your rate. Again, you might want to work through an agency, but if you may have more success advertising your services on local classifieds or hobby-specific Facebook groups.

9. Proofread people’s writing

If you have an eye for detail, you can make money on the side by proofreading. Clients can be anything from individuals who want help with their resume to businesses without the luxury of in-house editors. 

The easiest way to get into proofreading is by using a freelance marketplace like UpWork. These allow you to bid for work, so you only have to take jobs that are worth your time. Unfortunately, this often results in a race to the bottom on prices.

10. Transcribe audio

If you have decent typing skills, you can make a bit of extra cash online through audio transcription. You need to pass a typing speed test on the likes of TranscribeMe. The pay is around $0.10 per minute of audio you transcribe.

Transcription is a reliable way to generate steady additional income with minimal effort. You can easily fit it around a regular job.

11. Start a blog or an e-commerce store

Blogging and e-commerce can be a lucrative way of making money online. However, it can also be a time sink if you don't know what you're doing. Your first step is getting your site up and running. If you have the budget, it can be easier to buy an e-Commerce business that is already making money and growing it.

Once you establish a decent audience, you have several options to monetize your site. You can sell ad space on your website, sell products, a course, or market other people's products as an affiliate. 

nico page

A crucial part of growing your audience will involve generating backlinks from other sites in your niche. All of this guest posting opens up another opportunity for making money online.

12. Sell guest posting services

Backlinks are a valuable commodity. Joshua Hardwick from Ahrefs found the average cost of publishing a guest post on a site was $77.80 in 2018. Meanwhile, the average price of a backlink was $361.44.m

If you’re writing content for high domain authority sites, you can sell that opportunity to generate a backlink to clients. Fundamentally, this is what many SEO agencies do.

13. Create a YouTube channel

If you fancy yourself as a presenter, starting a video channel has never been easier. You can set up a video channel focused on just about any niche. You'll find plenty of people earning a decent income playing computer games all day or even unwrapping products. Vimeo, YouTube, Metacafe, and Instructables are all great portals for video marketers. Here’s a nice guide with plenty of tips for growing your YouTube channel.

14. Do affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is where you make money by referring people to a product or service. In the US, the value of the affiliate marketing industry is set to hit $6.8 billion by 2020.

You'll find affiliate marketing offers for almost every niche. One of the largest platforms for affiliates is Amazon. However, you'll also find deals on sites like Clickbank, JV Zoo, as well as being able to access direct offers.

amazon affiliate marketing

15. Start flipping websites

Flipping a website is the equivalent of buying a second-hand home, doing it up and reselling it for more. Pretty much anyone can do it, though you need to know what you are doing.

It will take a certain amount of work to raise the value of a website. General improvements you can make include increasing the amount of traffic a website receives, making the design look nicer, or increasing the average order value.

Websites such as Flippa and Website Broker are good places to look for sites to buy. You can also sell your site through either site.

16. Start peer-to-peer (P2P) lending

Peer-to-peer lending has emerged as an alternative to traditional investment methods. P2P lending involves making small loans to individuals and businesses bilaterally. You usually make a loan through a marketplace.

The same regulations as traditional loans don't cover peer to peer lending. Tread carefully. Diversify your investments. Moreover, don't invest anything that you aren't prepared to lose.

17. Provide online marketing services

There is a range of skill sets that businesses operating online need to be successful. Common skill sets that online business owners look for include: 

  • Help to get extra traffic to their site (SEO)
  • Support managing paid adverts (PPC)
  • Website development
  • User experience (UX) and sales

If you have any of these skill sets, then you will find a broad audience of business owners who need your support. With the right approach and a lot of hard work, you can start an online marketing agency.

To find potential clients, you’ll need to master cold outreach. This is the process of identifying people who would be interested in your service, connecting with them, and pitching your service. 

Related: Read this guide to learn more about successfully closing more sales.

18. User-test websites

Web developers’ number one priority is to make sure their sites are user-friendly. Businesses will test if their website is user-friendly on actual people. Sometimes this is done during beta testing. Many businesses will pay decent money for human guinea pigs. 

website test

A popular platform is UserTesting. You can make upward of $50 to $60 an hour user testing websites.

19. Complete online surveys

Reputable survey sites can offer a means of generating money in your free time. Many pay in vouchers and coupons. Others will give you cash for your insights. Many of the paying sites operate a points system, but the best sites provide a fixed fee for each completed survey.

Keep in mind anybody can fill in surveys online. As such, there's a lot of demand. Don't expect to make a life-changing amount of money filling in online surveys. At best, you can probably expect a few hundred dollars a month on the high end. 

20. Sell your unwanted goods

One way that just about anyone can drum up some cash is by selling old and unwanted goods. Most of us are guilty of hoarding unnecessary junk around the house. If you have a niche hobby, this is likely a hundred times worse.

For most people, old clothes, books, and kids' toys are a great option to make money by clearing out the attic. Well, known marketplaces like eBay, Etsy, and CraigsList are good options, but these days, you can also use Facebook Marketplace.

21. Produce artisan products to sell online

From art to furniture, people make a career out of advertising and selling handmade items online. Websites such as Etsy and eBay are amazing platforms through which to sell artwork or handmade items.

artisan products

You can turn your hobby into a full-time business and make a lot of money in the process if you are focused on growing your business. The benefit of this approach is that it often combines your passion with a job opportunity.

22. Compose music for online media

If you have even a shred of musical ability, you'd be amazed how easy it is to make money online as a composer. Do you know all those travel videos with twinkling acoustic guitars in the background? Someone wrote that music. 

Yes, nine out of 10 YouTubers opt for royalty-free music, but there is nonetheless a lucrative market for premium audio. One easy way to access this is by submitting to paid music libraries, where content creators can find it. 

You can do this in combination with the bolder approach of directly contacting potential clients. With the right price and some sales skills, it's a market opportunity.

Some anecdotal evidence: a friend of mine bought a Roland Juno-6. For those not in the know, that's the synthesizer they recorded the Stranger Things theme tune on. Now, he makes trendy beepity-boopity intros for podcasts for a few hundred bucks a pop.

23. RoboTrading

RoboTrading is a new alternative to more traditional wealth management. Instead of a team of financial advisors, an algorithm decides when and where to invest your money. You can set your desired level of risk on a sliding scale and the type of investments it can make. 

Numerous platforms exist, which offer lower minimum investments than personal wealth management. Of course, there are certain drawbacks compared to RoboTraders' human counterparts.

For one thing, you'll lose a higher percentage of your investment in their fees. For another, these are new platforms, so they're not quite as proven or reliable. That means a higher risk overall, and little recourse if things go south. 

Feeling like a million bucks

When it comes to making money online, there are two main options available to you. First, there's passive income, like investing or trading assets. Secondly, you can offer services by tutoring or creating media and content.

Whichever you choose, it's important to remember that there are no silver bullets. If you plan to eventually quit your job and work full time at your computer, this will still require hard work and some serious thought. 

After all, there's no such thing as a free lunch. 

Now that you're racking in the Benjamins, you might need to find an investment firm to help you manage all your newfound wealth. Find the highest-rated investment solutions available to you on the market, only on G2. 

Find the best Investment Firms for 2019 →

23 Effective Strategies for Making Money Online Learn 23 effective ways to start making money online without ever leaving your house – for the most part!
Nico Prins Nico is a content marketing consultant and the Founder of Launch Space. He works with clients that range from Fortune 500 companies to startups providing them with insights that help generate more traffic to their site and increase sales.

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