It seems like everyone is struggling to pay the bills these days. When money is tight, people turn to side gigs to make ends meet. However, that does not necessarily mean that you need to get a second “job,” per se. Thanks to the internet, there are tons of ways you make money online with little to no special knowledge or education.
So we are going to cover some quick ways to make money online without having to get a job. Some of these opportunities are good for just side cash and some have the potential to turn into a full time gig, but all of them can net you some cash.
Ways to Make Money Online
Freelancing is one of the simplest ways to make money online. No matter your skill set, you can find people willing to pay for your services. Some popular freelance niches include marketing, blogging, editing, visual design, and video editing. Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box for some unconventional freelancing gigs such as software, arts and crafts, and photography. Freelancing is very flexible so there are lots of opportunities to make money. Freelancing gigs also have the potential to turn into full time gigs so it’s a good space to test a business idea if you are looking for a career change.
2. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is another popular money-making trend online. The basics of affiliate marketing are simple. You share products to your audience and then you get a cut of whatever sales you help facilitate. Affiliate marketing is good because it’s very flexible. The most common method of affiliate marketing is blog posts and email campaigns. But there are other ways. Video affiliate marketing and influencer marketing are specific niches where the affiliate market has gotten very popular. Affiliate marketing is pretty simple and does not require any special skill set. All you have to have is a targeted niche and good marketing sense.
3. Sell Used Clothes
If you have a lot of used clothing lying around that is not getting worn, you can sell them to make some quick cash. Local consignment shops and websites such as ThredUp and Poshmark will pay you for old clothes, provide a platform to sell them, and help you with the shipping and handling. If you do sell online, make sure that you include well-lit photos of your clothing from all angles and research prices with competitors selling the same type of clothing,
4. Drive Delivery
If you have a car and do not mind driving for long periods, then driving delivery or rideshare for an app might be a good side hustle. Rideshare and delivery drivers for apps like Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, and Postmates routinely make $15-$25 an hour and there are a lot of opportunities to make more money. The best part is the flexibility. You can work as much or as little as you want, whether that is 5 or 25 hours a week.
5. Walk Dogs
Do you like dogs? Would you want to make money by hanging out with dogs and pets all day? Good news, you can! Apps like Rover, Wag, and Host a Pet can help hook you up with dog walking and pet sitting gigs. First, you make an account on the app then you can find opportunities near you. Gigs can range from dog-walking for a few hours to watching pets for days at a time. If you like animals, then this is a great side gig for your free time.
6. Taking Online Surveys
Online surveys are a simple and low-effort way to make some money online. Companies are always looking for ways to improve their products and services so they will pay people to take surveys and give their opinions. Sites like Opinion Outpost of InboxDollars aggregate surveys and questionnaires from companies all over the world that you can browse and apply to. Most of the time, you’ll have to give some demographic info like your age, location, employment, and hobbies.
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Everyone has something to say and the internet gets a place where they can share that message with others. Blogging is a great way to make money talking about something you are passionate about. Whether you have an interest in sports, video games, gardening, carpentry, or tech and gadgets, you can fund a niche and build an audience. A blog provides several avenues for monetization, such as affiliate marketing and selling ad space. Blogs can also be a place to plug any other money-making projects you have going on.
8. Amazon Mechanical Turk
Companies always need extra hands on deck to perform some necessary tasks. They often outsource these jobs to websites like Amazon Mechanical Turk. Mechanical Turk supplies an essentially never-ending flow of “microtasks” for workers to accomplish for pay. Listed tasks take anywhere between 5-45 minutes to complete and there is no limit to how many tasks you can complete. You won’t be able to get rich using Mechanical Turk but it’s a quick and easy way to make some extra dough on the side.
9.Rent Out a Room on Airbnb
If you have an extra room in your house or already own some property, you can rent it out on Airbnb to have a more or less constant stream of income. Airbnb is a lucrative market, especially if you live in a tourist-friendly town. You can make an account, list your property, and vet clients. Maintaining an Airbnb rental takes some extra work and has some expenses but the return is well worth the work. A word of caution though, make sure that you thoroughly read all renter agreements and research competitor rates around your area to set prices.
10. Online Tutoring
Do you have a college degree? If so, then you could make some great side money tutoring students online. Tutoring is a great opportunity to make some money and the majority of tutoring organizations pay their workers well. You don’t even need to be an expert in any subject. Most organizations require you to have a college degree and that is it. You could teach math, English, Spanish; whatever you want. There is also a lucrative market for tutoring for specialized exams such as the ACT and the SAT. Tutors can easily make over $25 an hour and in some cases over $40 an hour.
11. Sell Crafts on Etsy
Are you good with your hands? Do you like making small arts and crafts? Then you could make a pretty penny selling your handmade wares on Etsy or another similar platform. Etsy is the go-to platform for independent artisans looking to sell their wares to a global audience. Etsy grossed over $5 billion in 2019 alone and has a bustling community of millions of merchants. Etsy provides the infrastructure to make selling your goods easy so you can focus on making your products.
12. Shop for Rewards
If you like the shop then how would you like to get paid to shop? Rewards apps like Rakuten, MyPoints, and Swagbucks will pay you in rewards and other promotional material just for shopping at partner retailers. You get points for every qualified purchase you make and can then redeem those points for rewards like gift cards, discount codes, and cold, hard cash. These shopping reward apps are not just for luxury goods either. You can get points for necessities like groceries and gasoline.
12. Scan Products
Did you know that you can get rewards not even for purchasing products but just for walking into stores and scanning them? Apps like ShopKick has created an industry where you can qualify for discounts and rewards simply for checking in at local retail partners. You get money just for going to physical stores and for scanning products. You can make these points without having to buy anything and can redeem those points for free gift cards and discount codes.
You can live stream anything nowadays and people will watch it. Whether you like video games, dancing, or what have you, you can find a live stream audience. Live streaming is a great way to earn a bit of extra money because you can easily monetize your channel through affiliate marketing, ads, and more. Probably the most popular livestreaming category now is gaming so if you have a PC that is up to it you can make a Twitch channel and start streaming games.
14. Make Youtube Videos
20 years ago it would be crazy to think you could make money by making videos on the internet. Thanks to sites like Youtube, you absolutely can. YouTubers can actually end up making a ton of money, upwards of hundreds of thousands of dollars. It takes a lot of work to get a video channel with consistent viewership up and going but once you do it creates a nice cushion of passive income.
- Related: How Much Do Youtubers Make?
15. Focus Groups
Companies routinely host “focus groups: so they can get feedback about their products. A typical focus group takes around 1-2 hours and consists of testing products or services and answering questions about your experience and thoughts. The average rate is around $30 per hour of focus group time but some pay much more. Keep in mind that you’ll have to sign up and not everyone gets picked. You might not fit the desired age/demographics so you’ll have to try a fair amount to qualify.
16. Test Websites/Apps
Similar to focus groups, companies will also pay you to test their websites and apps. Usually, these tests consist of you using the website or app like a normal user would to make sure it functions. Then, you provide a few sentences about your thoughts on the tech. Companies pay for these kinds of things to fix usability bugs and to gauge how the public meshes with their products. Websites like User Testing and UTest collect testing opportunities and streamline the application process.
17. Sell an eBook
An eBook is an electronic book that normally is around 15,000-25,000 words. eBooks are a popular method of making money because they require essentially no resources to write and publish. As long as you have a word processor and an internet connection, you can write and distribute an eBook. Platforms like Amazon have streamlined the process of publishing an eBook and give you a marketplace for your goods. Popular topics for eBooks include finance, investing, life mentoring, self-care and mental wellbeing, and money-making opportunities.
18. Sell Courses
Thanks to the internet, anyone can make a course on something they are knowledgeable about. Making an online course is all about finding some useful piece of knowledge that you can monetize. Platforms like Kajabi or Kartra content tools for building courses like video editing, webinar, and sales tools. Creating a course is a good idea because you can build up a list of subscribers for future opportunities. Course building software is fairly cheap nowadays so you can build a site and host your content for relatively little. A course platform can also be integrated into your blog or other materials.
19. Odd Jobs
The internet brings all kinds of people who want random odd jobs done. Fiverr is a platform where people go to host random gigs they need done. The selection on Fiverr is diverse and includes writing, translating, creating music, voiceovers, making video clips, and more. AS the name might imply, the base price for jobs is $5 but most people offer more. There is always a steady list of tasks pouring in for you to check out.
20. Sell Old Electronics and Gadgets
If you are a tech junkie and have a bunch of spare electronics lying around, you could make good cash selling them online. Got an old game console or TV that you don’t use? You’d be surprised how much people will pay for someone else’s junk. Websites like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace are great platforms for selling used goods like electronics. Just make sure that you vet anyone before you meet and meet in a public place.
Transcribing is simply the act of translating audio content into written form. If you have good attention to detail and can type quickly, you can make some money on the side working as a transcriber. As a transcriber, you would be translating all kinds of documents like videos, voice recordings, and books into digital text. It’s a simple job that does not require any special skills or training.
22. Sell Your Computing Power
Very often, companies and organizations need more computing power to handle all their data. To that end, organizations will pay you to keep your computer on so they can use your processing power. This type of ‘distributed computing” has become a relatively common way to outsource computing resources. You can get paid just to leave your computer on idle. It does not pay very much and it won’t make you rich, but it’s a way to make money with absolutely 0 effort on your part.
23. Retail Arbitrage
If you have an eye for good finds at the thrift shop, you can make a pretty penny by reselling those things. Retail arbitrages is basically the practice of buying and reselling products for a marked up price. It’s the simplest form of making money and the possibilities are endless. No matter if you like shopping for used clothes, books, or antiques, you can find a market for reselling them. The trick with retail arbitrages is to find a source for products and a niche where you can sell them for more than you bought them.
24. Buying and Selling Domain Names
People are always looking to buy websites, domain names especially. The pros of having a recognizable domain name are basically invaluable for businesses. So if you make a habit out of buying domain names or websites, you can make a pretty penny selling them back to businesses. Owning websites is also a way to earn some passive income on the side.
25. Micro Investing
I know what you are thinking, “Investing? That’s something only rich people do!” Truth be told, you actually do not need a ton of money to get started investing. Several apps like M1 Finance or Acorns handle “micro-investing.” Micro investing is a good way to make your spare change work for you. Thanks to the internet, it is easier than ever to invest in companies. For most online brokers, you can start investing with as little as $1. Even better, that money will grow over time and eventually turn into a stream of passive income.
- Related: The 5 Best Micro Investing Apps
26. Rent Out Your Car
Rideshare programs have also been accompanied by car-share programs. Apps like Getaround let you rent out your car when not using it and get paid. They offer full insurance and roadside assistance so you can rent out your car relatively risk-free. Getaround claims that you can make up to $10,000 in a year just by renting a car out. Apps like Getaround such as Sixt, Car2go, Zipcar, and Turo all have a similar model. If you do plan to rent out your car, consider using an older car that is fully paid off. Renting out regularly will put a lot of miles and depreciation.
27. Grade English Assessments
English is somewhat of the lingua franca of the business world, so there are a lot of people who will pay good money to learn it. Foreign students take tests to gauge their proficiency and need their assignments to be graded. The best part is that you do not even need a degree to grade. All you need is to be fluent in English. Platforms like EditFast will pay editors between $18-$25 per hour just to use English like you do every day.
28. Ask Questions
Yes, you can get paid to ask questions about things. Quora is a question forum and they will actually pay people to ask engaging questions that solicit the answers of knowledgeable experts and generate views. Its Partner Program is a pretty neat little gig and the top question-askers say they can clear up to $80 a day for a few hours of work. Most of the work involves thinking of creative, unique questions to ask so you will have to have a curious mind and be willing to look into subjects you’d otherwise not consider. The average question-asker gets approximately $0.04-$0.07 per question.
29. Advertise on Your Lock Screen
This is kind of a weird one but you can actually make money by running ads on your smartphone’s lock screen. SlideJoy is an app that you can put on your phone and it will place ads on your lock screen and pay you for it. You earn “carats” (their version of points) from viewing these ads. You can then redeem these points for cash gifts like gift cards or deposit cash directly into your PayPal account. Slidejoy is free to use and the creators estimate that just from using your phone like you normally would, you can make between $5-$15 a month. That is all for doing nothing but using your phone like you normally would.
30. Lend Money
If you have some money lying around, you can put it to work for you by peer-to-peer (P2P) lending. P2P lending is essentially lending money to other people and making a profit on the interest. LendingClub is an example of one of these services and allows you to make loans to other people. You can make anywhere between 4%-6% on any amount you lend and can lend as little a $25. There are some conditions though. You have to have a minimum opening deposit of $1,000 and meet state-specific income requirements for lending. You also lose your investment if the borrower defaults.
31. Surf the Web
You can also make money by just surfing the web. Microsoft Rewards (Formerly Bing rewards) will let you earn reward points just for using Bing as your search engine. You can then redeem these points for gift cards and other goodies like games and discount codes. You get 5 points per search and earn levels. As you level up you earn even more rewards. You can also opt to directly donate your Bing reward points to a charity of your choice.
32. Be a Virtual Assistant
If you have ever worked in an office, you could take that experience and work as a virtual assistant. People hire virtual assistants for all kinds of secretarial and data entry jobs. All you need is a computer, a working internet connection, and some typing skills, The best part of being a virtual assistant is that you can work from wherever you want. That means you can sit at home in your pajamas and make money by sending emails or taking phone calls.
33. Make a Podcast
Podcasts are a very popular form of media nowadays and there is a podcast on virtually everything. Podcasts are popular because they are very inexpensive to make. All you need is an idea, a microphone, and some recording software. Like a Youtube channel or a blog, once you get a podcast going and build up a following, you can monetize it through things like affiliate marketing, ads, and membership content.
34. Play Games on Your Phone
The idea of getting paid to play games seems too good to be true but it’s real. Apps like Mistplay will literally pay you to play games. You download the app and then you can join in games every day to get rewards. These reward points can then be converted into digital gift cards and prepaid visa cards. You can also play games with friends so there is a social element as well. You can use the chat feature and talk to your team. The more you level up the more rewards you get. It’s totally free to download and play and there are no subscription costs or anything like that.
35. Review Software
If you fancy tech and software then you can actually get paid to play around with it and write a review. Websites like Capterra will pay users to use software packages and applications, share their opinion on a public forum, and get paid. You can make up to $50 per review depending on how many views and engagements your reviews get so try to be as detailed and helpful as possible. It’s an extremely simple gig that is easy to integrate with your hobbies. You also get money for referring friends to the program, to the tune of $5 per referral.
36. Sell Your Hair
If you have thick, luscious locks, then you should know that people would pay good money for your hair. HairSellon is a website that will actually buy your hair from you, with no tricks or weirdness. You can donate your hair or you can sell it and set your price based on the length, color, and thickness. Technically, HairSellon does not buy your hair but just connects you with clients that want to buy your hair. So make sure that you get paid first before you cut and send your hair over.
37. Find Price Rebates
Very often, companies will offer rebates on their products to incentivize shopping. However, it can be difficult to find these rebate offers and apply them. Apps like Ibotta, Checkout 51, Coupons.com, and Receipt Hog will automatically search and apply rebates to your shopping cart at retailers. These kidneys of apps and extensions greatly streamline the process of searching for and applying rebates. You can save up to 2% per purchase on some good sna retail partners. Some rebate services will also send you email alerts when there are new offers available.
38. Watch TV
If you are just going to binge Netflix every day, why not try to get paid a little bit for doing so? Apps like Viggle will literally pay you to watch TV. You download the app, connect it to your subscription services like Netflix, Amazon, and Hulu, and then earn points for watching. You get one point per minute that you watch. You can then redeem those points for cash rewards of digital gift cards. So if you are going to watch TV all day you may as well make it worth it.
Quarantine has been hard on all of us, especially our midsections. Why not try to make some money while walking off those lockdown pounds. Apps like HealthyWage and Sweatcoin will literally pay you to work out. You create a fitness goal, get points, and redeem those points for rewards. Some fitness apps will actually let you make a bet on a weight loss goal and give you a payout if you meet that goal. HealthyWage will allow you to exercise and get money.
40. Share Notes With Students
It might sound a bit off-color, but you can sell your notes to students. Sites like Stuvia and Nexus Notes will allow you to upload notes, lesson plans, review assignments, practice sets, and other teaching materials for money. Students will pay top dollar for good study materials and you can put all that note-taking in college to good use.
41. Receive Packages for Neighbors
Anyone who has ordered something online can know how frustrating it is when they don’t know when it will arrive. Sometimes they may not have time to wait around for the entire delivery window. Apps like eNeighbor hook you up with a community of like-minded people who deliver packages to you and you hold them while they come to pick them up. With eNeighbor you can expect to make around $3.50 per package. It’s not a lot, but how easy is it to just hold a package and hand it off?
42. Take Pictures of Your Receipts
Companies want to know exactly what people are buying so you can literally get paid to show them your receipts. Instead of just throwing away old receipts, put them to work for you and upload them to an app like ReceiptPal. With ReceiptPal, you can take pictures of your receipts and earn points that you can then redeem for points and gift cards. You also will automatically be entered into ReceiptPal’s weekly sweepstakes for a chance to win big.
Recycling is not only good for the Earth but it is also a way to make some quick cash on the side. Most states will give a bottle deposit for any bottles turned into a collection center. Depending on the kind of bottle or can, you can get up to $0.05-$0.10 back per bottler returned. Yeah, we know, that was the exact plot of that Seinfeld episode but it’s a real thing, trust us! You won’t get rich but you will do a good thing and get paid.
44. High-Yield Savings Account
Most people just put their money into a savings account but there are better ways to put saved money to work. One safe and secure option is to invest in a high-yield savings account. These kinds of accounts, like CD accounts or Money Market accounts, have a high-interest rate on the level of 0.5%-2% so your money will grow faster than normal. Keep in mind that most of these kinds of accounts do have a minimum deposit so make sure you have enough to foot that.
- Related: The Best High-Yield Savings Accounts
45. Sell Stock Photos
If you have a semi-decent camera, then there is the chance you could make some money by selling photos to a stock photo agency. In some cases, you can sell a photo for a straight-up price and in other cases, you get a tiny amount of money every time someone uses your photo. In general, stock photos can make anywhere between 30-40 cents per image per month, though this amount depends on a lot of factors such as image use, where you uploaded it, etc. But, selling stock photography is a low-stress, simple side job.
46. Sell Baked Goods
If you have a functioning kitchen, then you can make some nice dough (pun intended) selling baked goods. Baked goods are a great thing to make and sell because the cost is so low. Cookies can cost less than a few cents to make but can be sold for 30-40 times that. Besides, when was the last time you knew someone who wouldn’t buy cookies when they are around?
47. Listen to and Rate Music
We already talked about how you can make money watching TV and playing games, but you can also make money by listening to music. Apps like Hit Predictor are focused on resting new music with audiences and will actually pay people to test out songs and give feedback. With Hit Predictor, you listen to music and then give a rating. Every time you rate a song, you get points which you can then redeem for things like gift cards, DVDs, prizes, and money.
48. Sell Junk Mail
Far from being worthless, you can actually sell your junk mail to get cash rewards. websites like SBKC and other market research firms will pay you to send them your email marketing solicitations. And get paid. You will send email communications from places like insurance firms, mortgage and loan companies, credit cards, travel & leisure sites, and other similar kinds of solicitations. SBKC will compensate you with points that you then redeem for cash money sent directly to you.
49. Be an Editor
Similar to being a freelance writer, you can also work as a freelance editor. Freelance editing is exactly what it sounds like. You get paid to edit written text on a project to project basis. Editing usually pays per word and the amount you get paid depends on the length of the text, complexity, and subject matter. The best editors can make up to 12 cents a word though a usual starting rate is around 1-3 cents per word.
50. Flip Antiques
If you are handy with furniture and know something about old stuff, you could make some money flipping antiques. Antiques are one of those things that it is difficult to appraise correctly but if you get good at it, antiques can be a great thing to source and up[sell. The trained eye can make great antique purchasing decisions
So there you have it, 50 ways to make money without getting a normal 9-5 job. So if you are struggling to make ends meet, these are some great ideas to make some extra cash on the side. Making money rarely ever comes for free but you find ways to earn some cash without having to get a second job.