The appeal of working from home of from your laptop is pretty easy to see. You can work from anywhere, whenever you want, you have no commute, no micro-managing boss, etc., etc. So if you’re brand new to making money online, or if you just want a few extra bucks and are looking for free ways to make money online, where do you start?
If you do a simple Google search, you might be able to find a couple sources to give you an idea where to start, but you’ll almost certainly have to sift through pages and pages of affiliate marketers and websites that are just trying to sell you a “make money online” program. Some of these programs or eBooks can be filled with some good information, but I’ll get into that in another post. For now, here are some ways to make money online without paying anything up front.
elance – All types of freelance opportunities. Web development, mobile programming, designing, writing, translation, marketing, etc.
oDesk – Another large freelance marketplace. Sales and marketing, designing, writing and translation, and tons more.
Constant Content – Write unique articles and blog posts on a wide variety of subjects for cash.
Text Brokers – Same as constant content, this is a marketplace for articles.
Yahoo! Contributor Network – Allows writers, photographers, and videographers to share their knowledge and earn money by publishing their unique perspectives on Voices and other Yahoo! sites.
Cracked – If you’re funny or have a unique twist on something, writing for Cracked.com could be for you. They start paying $100 per article, and you have the opportunity to be read by millions.
Seeking Alpha – Write about financial issues or about certain stocks you follow and get paid.
Fool – Like Seeking Alpha, you can get paid to write unique articles on financial issues or write ups about different stocks, mutual funds, ETF’s, etc.
Postloop – Earn rewards for writing informative blog and forum posts.
Slicethepie – Here you get to rate and review music to receive payments.
Neobux – A great PTC (pay-to-click) site where you can redeem points for prizes. They also have a great referral program.
Swagbucks – The largest PTC site on the internet. It is a customer loyalty program that allows you to earn “swagbucks” for gifts and prizes like Amazon gift cards.
Bing Rewards – This one pays out very little, but it’s probably something you’re doing multiple times daily anyway. Just search, and get rewarded.
Cashcrate – With CashCrate, you can start making money right away by completing offers, taking surveys, and shopping online.
Jebbit – Site where you answer questions about a webpage and earn money.
Gifthulk – A PTC site similar to Swagbucks.
PaidViewpoint – Receive surveys every couple days and earn cash for completing them and increasing your trait score.
Clixsense – PTC site to earn cash and prizes.
Jingit – Watch ads and earn money, also has an app for mobile check ins at Walmart for extra money. $10-$15 cap per week.
Amazon Associates – When someone clicks on your Amazon affiliate link, you’ll receive a commission from anything they purchase within 24 hours.
eBay Partner Network – Earn a commission on eBay auctions that people find via your affiliate links.
Commission Junction – Huge marketplace of affiliate offers.
Clickbank – One of the largest marketplaces for eBooks and other digital products.
Google Affiliate Network – I view this as pretty similar to Commission Junction.
Fiverr – Fiverr is a place for people to share things they’re willing to do for $5: Funny and Bizarre, Social Marketing, Graphics, Advertising, Technology, Business, etc. You can also add to your “gig” and up sell services to potential buyers.
mTurk – One of my absolute favorites for some spare money. It’s pretty easy to make an extra $20 a day for little effort. There are people that are making a full time living doing different jobs on mTurk. It certainly has a learning curve, but some good places to find good and interesting HITs (Human Intelligence Tasks), are here, here, and here.
Microworkers – A site similar to mTurk where you have tons of micro jobs to choose from.
Revenue Sharing Websites
YouTube – Make money by using Google Adsense on your videos, or by putting affiliate offers that are relevant to your content in the description below your videos.
Squidoo – You create pages here called “lenses” and are able to embed affiliate links or you can monetize your pages with Google Adsense. There is great write up here on how to make money with Squidoo and make the most of your time there.
Hubpages – One of the biggest and most popular revenue-sharing article websites.
InfoBarrel – Publish articles, videos, reviews and how to guides and share them with the world.
Start A Free Blog
You can start a free blog at any number of websites. Blogger and WordPress are the two I would recommend as they are recognizable and easy to use. Once you have your free blog set up, you can either monetize it with Google Adsense, affiliate links, or use services like Pay-per-post, Sponsored Reviews, Linkworth, SocialSpark.
Companies of all types are always looking to find ways to improve and find new products that people will love. If you live in any decent sized metro area, there are certain to be market research companies that you can do studies and focus groups for. I live in Arizona, and a handful of companies I’ve done studies for are Delve, Harvard Business School, 20/20 Panel, Schlesinger Associates, Plaza Research, Focus Market Research, Fieldwork Phoenix. I’ve done taste tests, listened to music hooks for radio stations to see what they should be playing, household goods surveys, and all other types of tasks. Maybe not a true way to make money online since some of these are in person or over the phone, but there are a good amount that can be done from the comfort of your own home.
Gigwalk – Gigwalk is a mobile work marketplace. You can earn extra money using Gigwalk’s iPhone or Android mobile apps and performing simple field work, such as mystery shopping, delivering items, testing mobile apps, taking photos, and more.
Field Agent – Similar to Gigwalk, Field Agent turns iPhone users into mobile workers who scan bar codes, mystery shop, check prices, take polls, explore neighborhoods, and more using their smartphones. In return, agents get paid between $3 and $12 for each task.
Shopkick – A program that rewards you just for going shopping whether or not you buy an item. Through this you earn “kicks” redeemable for gift cards or store discounts. Available as an app for both iPhone and Android.
CheckPoints – You earn points and rewards for scanning items, checking in at different stores, playing games, or completing offers. Points are redeemable for discounts, gift cards, or products.
EasyShift – A lot like Gigwalk, EasyShift assignments include taking a picture or recording a price. Payments range from $2 to $20 per shift. Currently the app is iPhone-only.
Apptrailers – For both iPhone and Android that allow you to watch videos and download apps to earn points. Cash out to gift cards and paypal.
Sell Designs or Photos
Cafepress – Upload your own graphics design, logo or text, which will be sold on Cafepress.com.
Etsy – Sell handmade or vintage items, art and supplies on the largest and most popular marketplace for handmade and vintage goods.
Skreend – Make money selling your t-shirt designs.
Fotolia – Sell your unique photos.
iStockPhoto – Sell your unique photos.
ShutterStock – Sell your unique photos.
Sell Stuff You No Longer Need
Sometimes the quickest way to make an extra buck, is to simply get rid of stuff you no longer need.This is actually a big one for me right now, as I’m planning a cross country move and have years worth of stuff that I’ve been trying to sell to make the move easier.
eBay – Sell virtually anything you could imagine on the largest online auction site.
Gazelle – Sell your old cell phones and electronics for cash.
Craigslist – Largest online classified ad site on the planet. You can post ads for anything, and pretty easily sell your old stuff or barter for other stuff.
Backpage – Like a smaller version of Craigslist.
Amazon – A lot of people don’t realize you can actually sell back or trade in items you own to Amazon and receive Amazon gift card credit.
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