Making Money Online for the Absolute Beginner
Do a quick search for the term “Make Money Online” in Google and it will spit back well over 500 million results. I guess you can say that it’s a very hot topic because why wouldn’t you want to earn a few extra bucks (or start a full-fledged business) from the comfort of your computer, tablet, or phone.
Making money online generally goes in two directions:
- You’re attempting to build a brand and offer a product or service
- You’re tapping into existing platforms and opportunities to generate revenue
I could go on and on about the countless ways to earn money online but like trying to choose a movie on Netflix… there are so many options that you get overwhelmed and say “oh never mind”. Instead I want to explain the basics of what I’ve done that has earned me an income for my online methods since I feel these are the type of opportunities that anyone can test the waters.
As for the branding, products, and services approach:
- Freelance services are a great way to turn your skills into a money-making venture. Your skill may be accounting, teaching a language, writing, graphic design, consulting, and anything that is in demand as you’d find in the real-world.
- Product development through invention will be a toughie depending on the complexity of the product but consider starting small such as offering hand-crafted quilts, furniture, t-shirts, or other types of physical products that align with your hobbies. You could also take the route of contacting a manufacturer/supplier and aid in selling their products through your site.
- Popularity is a money-maker, too, especially if you are a creative type that can create engaging YouTube videos, amass followers on your Facebook/Twitter/IG accounts, or blog. Create great content and people will follow; once you’ve developed a community you will have opportunities to earn through product/service promotions, advertising, sponsorships, and more.
My recommendation for delving deeper into these areas is by utilizing the wealth of online tutorials and courses (many of them free) on sites such as udemy and Coursera (here is a good starting list).
In regard to making money online WITHOUT branding, products, and services…
- Online gambling is alive and well. Those that know how to play the games and are willing to take risk for reward have many options to cater to their favorite games and play styles. Online casinos offer a variety of blackjack, roulette, poker, slots, and sports betting. As long as you play your cards right and keep a level head about your income and expenses you can turn online gambling into a great money-maker (all explained by this guide).
- Filling surveys and participating in focus groups isn’t the most thrilling way to pass your time but what makes them worth their mention is that you can do them passively such as during a commercial break, on your commute while in public transit, or if you’re just buying time until your next activity starts. Reddit.com/r/beermoney (as the name implies) is a good starting point to learn more about these type of sites along with tips and news about site developments. You may not earn a whole lot for each survey/activity you complete but it adds up.
- An extremely easy way to earn a few extra bucks is by joining the Amazon Associates program. You know Amazon, well this is an affiliate program where you earn a commission if someone purchases an item from their site after they’ve gone through your unique link. What’s neat about this approach is that you don’t need a website. You can promote this link to your friends, family, and those following you on your social accounts. Just choose a product you really like (or one that you own), write a little review, and you’re good to go. You can also make groups for your family/friends and politely ask them that anytime they purchase off Amazon they make sure to click your link. The commissions add up!
Again, there are plenty of great opportunities where you can work-from-home, sell old items you don’t need, and leverage your hobbies/interests into something people are willing to pay for as long as you can get it out in front of them.
Find something to sell (or do), get your name out there, build a following, network with others, keep learning, and in time the money will start trickling in. Who knows? You might take it full-time!