Most of us dream of living a luxurious life that does not involve going to the office and allows us to take a vacation to the Bahamas every now and then and enjoy a private yacht tour.
A few years ago, investing in stock markets was the ‘go-to’ way of becoming a millionaire overnight, however, the success of names like Neil Patel and Huda Kattan has given people another route – to working online. It is fun, it’s easy, it’s affordable, and above all… it is a lot less riskier.
However, the grass is always greener on the other side. While the internet has a lot of potential with over 3.2 billion people using the web now, not everyone who attempts to start a business online is able to find a success.
So what is it that they’re lacking which prohibits them from tasting success? Here are a few reasons:
- Taking it Too Lightly: Many people make the mistake of taking online business a little too lightly. While there’s added ease when you’re working from home, yet you cannot afford to take things lightly. There’s actually added pressure when you’re working from home, especially in the beginning. An online business is just like any other business, it demands your time, attention and care. It will not grow on its own! Always remember, hard work beats the talent.
- Doing What They Cannot Do: There are a plethora (literally!) of options to choose from when it comes to making money online. A lot of people look for the ‘fast option’ instead of the ‘right option’ and end up making a loss. Always, look for ways to make money that are right for you. Do not just follow what everyone else is doing.
- Wanting Too Early Too Soon: Everything takes time. While there may be a lucky few to have found success within a quick-time, not everyone is born with such luck. It takes months, and at times years before you begin to see any positive results.
- Not Marketing Online: A major myth with most online businesses is that they require ‘no investment’. It’s time to bust this myth. While it is true that you do not need an investment to start a business online in most cases, you will need to market what you have to offer to be able to attract others. And online marketing, like anything else, requires money, be willing to spend money, it is an investment to yourself.
If you are planning on starting a business, do not make the above mentioned mistakes, also you need to avoid these type of personality traits that can hinder your success. To help you pick the right career option, given below are 19 ways to make money online.
1. Start a Website
Starting a website is usually the first thing that comes to people’s mind when they plan on starting a business online. A website offers users something that they’re interested in. Look at Facebook and Yahoo, these are simple but powerful websites with the owners that are raking in billions of dollars. The potential is huge, you may even turn your website into an incorporation, just like Mark Zuckerberg did with Facebook. When it comes to a new ‘concept’, being first matters a lot.
Here’s how to go about it:
- Think of what your website would offer. Do you want a news related site like CNN? Do you want a photo sharing site like Flickr? Do you want a social media site like Twitter? The options are endless. Ideally you should follow your passion and start a website on something you truly root for, that way your work won’t be boring.
- Once you have decided on the niche, it is time to think of a name. There will be two things to keep in mind – your business name and your website name. There are over 1 billion websites out there, leaving you with little choices when it comes to a URL, however, you can use different extensions like .com, .net etc., to find an available domain. So, pick a brand name that is unique and relevant to your business. You should also make sure it is short and pronounceable. Lastly, make sure the brand name is available on all social media channels as well.
- The next step is to setup web hosting and get going with building and hosting your site, you can use Bluehost for web-hosting. You may build your own site by using a site builder or hire professionals to do the job for you. It’s important to take care of all aspects from graphics to layout to the content. It’s like any other business, you have to offer the best to your users. You can try some of the online site builders like Wix.com, Imcreator.com Doodlekit.com, Sitebuilder.com or Websitebuilder.com.
- Once the website is ready, it is time to spread the word out by marketing. Reach out to people by using marketing techniques like SEO, email marketing and social media advertising. If you want to hire some professionals, you can head off to services like Samurais.co or you can teach yourself some basics about SEO that will help you get going with your project.
How will I make Money from My Website?
You can monetize your website by joining an ad platform like Adsense. Other ways to make money from a website are given here .
2. Start a Blog
You must be wondering what’s the difference between a website and a blog? Technically, they both are the same thing, however, blog is limited in a way that it’s more about sharing your opinions. For example, LinkedIn, a social media website, has its own blog section where writers share their opinions.
BuzzFeed is also mainly a blog, and makes huge money with ads and paid content. Even small names like Perez Hilton are now doing big business with blogs, there are even work from home bloggers who earn in tends of thousand dollars a month working online, if this income report earning $30,000 dollars in one month does not convince you then I don’t know what will.
Here’s how to start a blog:
- The first step is same, think of a name and get a URL.
- Starting a blog is easier than starting a website as there are some famous platforms like WordPress where you have thousands of free and paid themes to choose from. Check this complete guide on how to start a WordPress blog.
- Next, you have to market. Check ways to market a website here.
How Will I Make Money from My Blog?
There is a very thin line between a blog and a website. Technically, it isn’t much different. We recommend you check our how to make money with my blog article for more tips.
3. Start an eCommerce Store
An eCommerce store is an online store where you sell products. Thanks to the option to be a middleman, you do not have to worry about making your own products. You may acquire products from the seller and sell them at your store, just like a retail store. Even Amazon and eBay are big eCommerce stories helping people sell. You earn profit on each sale as you work to find more customers.
Here’s how to start an eCommerce site:
- Once again, pick a brand name and a URL.
- Build your eCommerce store that allows people to shop without any difficulty. You may pick known sellers like Shopify or simply install one of several eCommerce plugins on WordPress.
- Building an eCommerce store would require a lot more care. You have to ensure that payment processing is safe and secure as well. The easiest way is to count on a third-party tool like 2Checkout and PayPal. You can integrate these known payment gateways into you site to allow people to make payments safely and securely.
- Once everything is into place, it is time to start selling your product by marketing online.
How Will I Make Money from My E-commerce Store?
A large chunk of your profit will come through sales, however you have other options as well, including advertisement. Check this article to know how to make money from your eCommerce store . We also recommend you to check our guide on how to boost eCommerce sales . With billions of eCommerce stores out there, you will need to up your game to make a respectable amount of money.
4. Start a YouTube Channel
The list of people making money via YouTube is endless. Look at TheRadBrad making around $915,000 a year just by posting original videos on YouTube. You can also replicate his success by coming up with something unique. When it comes to YouTube, it’s all about getting more subscribers and views.
Here’s how to start on YouTube.
- Make an account on YouTube and choose a username that reflects your interests. Fill details and put a profile picture. However, decide if you wish to present yourself as an individual or a company before you begin posting.
- Choose a category you want to excel in. On YouTube the possibilities are endless. You can start a fitness channel or share fashion tips. There are over a billion users on YouTube interested in different things. However, some of the most popular categories include: fashion, health, cooking and technology.
- Make your first video and share it on YouTube. Use a professional camera and shoot properly. The video should have clear sound and some editing may be required as well. Make sure to stay away from copying other’s content to avoid copyright infringement.
- Promote your video on different channels. An important thing is to pick a clever title category and description. Now that YouTube is more like a search engine, keywords play an important role.
How Will I Make Money from YouTube?
You can make money by monetizing your YouTube channel. This way ads are displayed on your videos, and you make money based on views and the CTR rate. Hence, the more people watch your video, the more money you make. Other than this, you can earn by promoting products in your video and pushing people to make a purchase.
5. Offer Freelance Services
There are tonnes of freelance sites out there like UpWork and Guru. There are 34 million people freelancing in the US, and the trend is constantly on a rise. An average freelancer makes $21 per hour, and works 36 hours a week. However, the amount you make largely depends on your niche, the platform you use to work at and the amount you charge.
Here’s how to start as a freelancer:
- Start by making an account on a site that meets your needs. A few things to consider include: payment methods, nature of jobs and fees charged. UpWork for example, charges 20% for new contracts, while Guru charges 10%.
- Fill your information and choose the niche you want to work in. You have to decide your hourly rate as well, and start bidding for jobs. Since there is competition, your proposal should be customized with relevant samples.
- Freelance platforms generally do not allow for negotiations, however some clients may wish to negotiate before they make an offer. So finalize a contract, accept the job and turn in work by the deadline.
How Will I Make Money by Working Online?
You will charge your clients a specific fee. Some platforms encourage hourly rates, while some promote fixed payments. In most cases you will be charged a certain fee by your platform and the amount will be transferred to your bank or selected payment method. Some platforms transfer the amount instantly (Upwork, for example), while some take a week or more (Freelancer requires time, for example).
6. Be an Influencer
Influencer marketing is rapidly growing. In simple words, an influencer is a person with a good following over the internet and the ability to influence decisions. It is just like celebrity endorsement where you endorse a client or a product to make your followers take notice.
Influencers are said to be making $250 per post on an average, however once you get big enough you can demand more money. Shondaurus, with over 700,000 followers on SnapChat works for big brands like Red Bull and Google, and was recently in the news for making $10,000 for a sponsored post.
Here’s how to become an influencer:
- Think of a niche and start sharing your opinions on it. You become an influencer by telling people something new. You need to sound like an expert. For example, Neil Patel is an influencer in the online marketing niche and shares his expertise by writing blogs.
- You need to be big on the internet first and have a solid online presence. Have a website, get a blog and have active social media profiles so you can create a niche.
- You need to be active and have a marketing plan. Plus, building relationships is also very important. Companies should know you exist and how you can help them so that they can sign up for your services.
How Will I Make Money As an Influencer?
You can make money by promoting what other’s have to offer. This can be done by writing a sponsored blog post or reviewing a specific product. However, you will be limited by your niche and reach. For example, if you are a makeup artist you can only talk about products or services related to fashion and beauty.
7. Advertise Through Social Media Profiles
If you have a good social media profile with a nice amount of followers, you can use it to make money. Even big celebrities like Kim Kardashian use social media to make money. The difference between this and influencer marketing is that you do not essentially need to be an influencer to make money. You can start a random Facebook page or Instagram profile and find success. Look at the success of Tasty and Humans of New York, two Facebook pages with billions of likes and tonnes of money.
Here’s how you can make money too:
- Think what you want to do and get a page or profile. You should also decide which social media profile you wish to work on. Facebook is a good choice with tonnes of users, but other platforms like Pinterest and Snapchat are also growing. The right platform depends largely on your target audience. Pinterest, for example, is predominantly used by females while on the other hand LinkedIn is for business individuals.
- Prepare your social media profile clearly with a neat profile pic and required details.
- Now begin posting and promoting what you have!
How Will I Make Money Through Social Media?
There are many ways to earn through social media, largely depending on your platform. While some social media can be monetized, others allow you to make sponsored posts and charge your clients. You can also use social media to forward users to your own website or blog and increase your visibility.
8. Trade Online and Invest
This may sound like a stretch, but you can become an investor online and start playing with stocks. While it is equally risky and rewarding, it is much more easier to do and a sure shot way to change your fortune if luck is on your side, with some knowledge on stocks.
Here’s how to do it:
- First gain some knowledge on investing and trading to make sure you do not end up in a loss. There are many guides on trading that you can go through to understand online trading. Remember that this kind of trading is risky and you may end up losing your investment, so always play safe.
- Decide where you wish to invest, there are several options including stocks and even digital currencies.
- Visit a website like eToro and Plus500to try your luck. These are two of the biggest websites out there in the investing niche, and also offer a welcome bonus to get you started. Other than this, you can try your luck by investing in other options such as digital currency. The best choice is BitCoin, which was mined in 2009 and is the biggest digital currency right now and grew a staggering 1000% in a matter of years.
How Will I Make Money By Trading Online?
This is a risky business and works just like stocks. You buy a stock and see where the market goes. It’s important to keep an eye on the changing trends so that you can make a good amount of profit at the right time.
9. Get Paid to Use Something
As mentioned earlier, companies are willing to pay you for your opinions and time. You can join a website and spend a few hours every day to make a good amount of money.
Here’s how to get started:
- First see what you are good at. You have several options to choose from, ranging from websites to apps to even music. Ideally, pick something you really enjoy so that you do not find the task tedious.
- Join a website lite UserTesting, which pays to review websites. Each test pays $10 and takes around 20-30 minutes. You will be testing for some big companies like Facebook, Apple and Microsoft. You will mainly be required to use the latest apps and features and give your feedback, which will be used to judge the quality of the app/website.
- If you have an ear for music you can join a website like Slice The Pie. It pays you for reviewing music, however you will have to spend a lot of time here to build a good profile and get high paying music to review.
How Will I Make Money By Using Something?
In most cases you will be paid on the time you spent. This is counted by installing a tool on your computer which logs time on its own and you get paid at the end of the month or week, based on the website you choose. However, some websites may have a minimum withdraw limit, so keep this in mind when making an account.
10. Earn Commissions
There are several ways to earn commission online. One of the easiest methods is by selling products as an affiliate. Multi level marketing has grown by leaps and bounds in the last decade, and a number of people have made it as a full-time career. It’s all about selling another company’s products and making a commission on each sale.
Here’s how you do it:
- Find a company that offers affiliate marketing services. Make sure you pick a company that’s reliable and pays well. Go through testimonials etc., to ensure it’s not a fraud.
- Learn about the product as you will need a lot of details to be able to sell it.
- Start to sell your product. You can do so online or offline, whatever you find easier.
- Most companies have ‘goals’ that you must achieve to be eligible for payment. So make sure to know about all the policies and reach your goals within the deadline.
How Will I Make Commission?
You will make money on every sale. It is quite like a retail store where you earn a profit. Other than this, many companies pay commission on bringing more sellers/buyers and getting new signups. So look out for these opportunities and you will have reasons to rejoice.
11. Review Products and Services
Companies out there are looking to pay you for your opinions. It’s a known fact that around 70% people look for reviews before they purchase a product. Companies understand this, and are willing to pay you to write for them.
Here’s how to get started:
- Join a website like DooYoo which allows you to write your review after using a product or a service. While DooYoo only has real reviews, there are some companies that may be willing to pay for fake reviews as well. A good option is Amazon where people are willing to pay for fake reviews. If you have a solid Amazon profile you can use it to publish 5 star reviews. However, in recent times Amazon has started to axe fake reviewers, so it may not be a very good idea.
- Other than this, you can review a product or a service on your own website or social media profile and charge your clients for the same. A review can pay you as high as $500, and even more if your website is considered a high authority site.
How Will I Make Money by Reviewing?
If you join a reviewing site, you will be paid as per the company’s policy. Such companies usually pay every 15 or 30 days and the amount is transferred to your bank or online account. However, if you publish reviews on your own site, you will have to crack a deal with your client and reach payment terms.
12. Fill Surveys and Get Paid for Using the Internet
Does it sound too good to be true? Well, it does, but it’s true. You can get paid to do nothing but use the internet and share your opinions thanks to website that pays to fill surveys, browse the web. You can easily find jobs that include filling surveys and data entry. There are many companies looking at getting information, and they are willing to pay for the same. Each survey pays around $3, but some can go as high as $10. If you do it as a full-time homebased job you may be able to make a decent amount of money.
Here’s how to get started:
- We suggest you take a look at our 10 best survey sites. There are many scam survey sites out there, so make sure you join a genuine site to ensure your precious time is not wasted. Some decent ones include Toluna, Populus Live, and ClickBank.
- You can join a website like Qmee which pays you to browse and purchase. With very little restrictions, it is a nice service that works with the help of a plugin. All you have to do is install it and you will get relevant ads when you search for something on the internet. And if you click on these ads and make a purchase, you will make money. This works quite like cash back, but has more options as you get free comparisons and even discount deals.
How Will I Make Money by Filling Surveys?
Based on the company you have chosen, you will be paid on your pay day in the suggested method. The amount you make generally depends on the number of surveys you fill or the time you spend on a survey.
13. Avail Free or Discount Offers
It may sound like a funny idea on paper, but you can make money by available free or discount offers. It’s all about getting something at a low rate and selling it at a high rate to make a profit.
Here’s how you can do it:
- Many companies offer seasonal sales or discounts to new customers. Look for such offers and make a purchase at low prices. A good option is to also buy during the holiday season when prices are usually low.
- Next, put your product up for sale at a higher price on a platform like Amazon and enjoy the profit. However, make sure you buy something that is in demand so that you can make a good amount of money. A good option is tickets to events as they usually sold out quick and can fetch you good prices. Online ticket touts are said to make 59% profit.
How Will I Make Money by Availing Discounts?
It is simple, you purchase something at a discount rate and sell it at a higher rate and the difference is your money. However, some of it may be spent on fee and other charges, but you can still make a good amount of money doing this.
14. Become a Virtual Assistant
Demand for virtual assistant is on a constant rise as more people are looking to work online. If you have managerial experience or you are good at handling tasks, you may signup to become a virtual assistant. It’s a freelancing job that allows you to work part-time or full-time.
Here’s how to get started:
- Join a website like UpWork and start bidding for job. Other than this, you may also look at Craigslist for available positions. This is more of a full-time, work-from-home position.
- Make sure you only take on tasks that you can handle. Some clients would need assistance writing emails and some may require you to handle graphics. It is important to not try your hands at something you cannot handle, as doing so may result in you not only losing your client but also getting a negative feedback.
How Will I Make Money by Working as a Virtual Assistant?
Virtual assistants are usually paid on an hourly basis, with 40 hours usually being the maximum hours. You charge your clients for the hours worked and get paid at the end of the month, minus platform fees.
15. Create an App
Ever heard of Allen Wong who made millions by coming up with a police app? The use of app is on a constant rise. In fact, people spend 90% of their time using apps than browsing the web. With growing demand, the potential is huge.
Here’s how you can get started.
- You can offer your services to a company that is looking to get an app. App designers earn $45 on an average, and an app can take 50 hours to be ready.
- Other than this, you can make your own app and put it on the market (Android, and iPhone).
- Remember that app is not only about mobile development but includes other things as well, such as logos, graphics and branding etc. So make sure to join hands with the best to ensure you get good results.
- You will also have to provide support for the app and spread the word by marketing about it online. The success depends on how many people download and use your app.
How Will I Make Money by Creating a Mobile App?
If you are working for someone else, you can charge them for making the app. In addition to this, you may also sign a yearly contract for support and make a good amount of money. However, if you are making your own app, you have the option to put it up for free or make it a paid app to earn money on every purchase. Most apps these days are available for free (basic) and also have a Pro-version that comes with added benefits.
Nonetheless, you also have the choice to monetize your app and earn by showing ads. This again depends on views and CTR, but the potential is huge. Pokemon Go made $35 million in revenue within the first two weeks!
16. Sell Photos Online
If you are good at photography, you can use your talent to sell your photos online. There are many sites that are buying photos. Here is how to get started.
- Look for a site that pays for photos. You may not gain any royalty, but a one-time price for your photos. Some good choices include ShutterStock and iStockPhoto. These sites pay as high as $200 per photos, but the amount you get depends on the nature and the quality of the picture. One website that pays royalty or a portion of every sale is 500mx Prime, where 70% of each sale is sent to you.
- Make sure your photos are clicked in a professional manner with a good camera and editing. You may touch the images on a software to make them look better.
- Remember that not each photo you submit may get accepted, and you may not submit one image at multiple stores.
How Will I Make Money by Selling Photos Online?
Based on the website you work for, you will either make money on every sale (a certain portion of the price) or get a one-time payment. In case of sale the amount may take a little while before it is cleared and reaches your account.
17. Develop Online Courses
If you are good at something, you may develop courses and make money by offering them to an audience. People are willing to learn and improve their craft. A good example would be the team at Invincible Startup, offering online courses for entrepreneurs.
Here’s how you can start such a business:
- Decide your expertise and concentrate on it. See what people wish to learn and develop courses. If you have the knowledge, but not the ability to prepare a course, hire a professional to do the job for you.
- You may publish the courses on your own site for a membership fee or per course fee. You also have the option to sell the courses at one of the sites like Academy of Mine and Digital Talk.
- If you offer your own courses, you would have to go and promote what you have by hiring a digital marketing firm.
- If you have a nice number of students buying courses from you, you may expand your services and offer online coaching as well and charge an hourly rate. With many people studying online, this may be a good way to make some money on the side.
How Will I Make Money by Developing Courses?
If you decide to offer the courses on your own site, you will earn the selling price, minus service fee charged by your provider. However, if you offer these through a third-party, you will be usually paid on a pers course sold basis. However, some of these companies may charge you a fee to be a member.
18. Promote Other’s Businesses
Once you learn the art of marketing, you can use it to help others promote their business. In simple words, become an online marketer. Online marketers make 1.6 times more than traditional marketers, making it a lucrative career options. And if you are good at it, you will get paid even more. With more and more people trying to be on the web, companies everywhere are looking for digital marketing experts.
Here’s how to start a career:
- Create your online presence by having a website or a blog and advertising your services. You should decide how you wish to promote another business. If you know about SEO, you may offer SEO services, if you have good marketing skills and a nice email list, you may offer email marketing services.
- If you are not willing to have a website, you may do it through your social media post by having sponsored posts, as mentioned earlier. Just let people know you’re willing to put paid posts and you’re good to go.
- Since competition is fierce, make sure you only put your hands on what you can handle. Online marketers are expected to provide results, and if they fail to do so, they may have to bite the dust.
How Will I Make Money by Promoting Other’s Businesses?
If you are offering digital marketing services, you can charge your clients on an hourly basis or per package. For example, if you have mastered the art of social media management, you may manage your client’s account for a monthly fee.
19. Write for Others and Yourself
Writing is back in the game! While libraries are slowly dying, eBooks are selling like hot cakes thanks to devices like Kindle. If you can play around words, start creating your own masterpiece.
Here’s how to start:
- Firstly, you have to think if you wish to write for yourself or others. If you want to write for others, go to a nice platform for freelancers, get a profile and start bidding for jobs.
- If you wish to write for yourself, decide if you wish to write fiction or nonfiction. After this, think of a topic and start creating your masterpiece.
- Once done, check your content for plagiarism with a tool like Copyscape(paid) or Duplichecker (free).
- You should carefully proofread your work, and ensure that it is free of grammar errors. It is recommended that you hire an editor to do the job for you. You can easily find one at Fiverr for as low as $5.
- Once your job is done, it is time to make money. However, you will have to take care of other factors as well, including word count, presentation (graphics, images and formats).
How Will I Make Money by Writing Content?
If you’re working as a freelancer, you will get paid on a per hour or per project basis, based on topic and word-count etc. According to reports, the average per hour rate is $20. But, if you wish to sell pre-written pieces, you can head over to a site like or ListVerse or check out large list of sites here and here. These sites pay as high as $100 per article, and can help you make a good amount of money. However, some of these require you to follow certain guidelines and get accepted as a writer before you can publish content.
In case you have created an eBook, you may publish it on a platform like Kindle. You get to select a price and make a profit on every sale made. The other option is to self-publish your book, which can be done online with the help of a platform like LuLu. The website allows you to upload your eBook and users can order a hard copy from here. You get to select a price, and make profit after fee deductions. And in case you’re lucky, you may create something as exciting as 50 Shades of Grey, which was first written as a fan-fic by E. L. James and was available on demand, and helped the author make millions of dollars.
This is it. You have 19 ways to make money, and trust us all of these work. You need to know what you can do the best and concentrate on that one aspect to turn around your life. Thousands of people have done it successfully and you can too.
Now it is your turn, please share some of the secrets or methods that you have used to make money online, it shall be a great service to rest of the community.