5 Real Ways to Make Extra Money Online
Type in “ways to make extra money online” in Google, and you will get over 211,000,000 search results back. Yet how many people are STILL confused about making money online?
Most people don’t have a clue even where to start. That’s a lot of info for not a lot of good quality information, so Lauren and I are here to help!
Why are people still confused?
Bad information is EVERYWHERE.
It’s cute that some random writer over at Entrepreneur.com can write an article about making money online with no real experience, but that stuff makes finding real info hard to find. This is why we publish our income reports at Create and Go.
Not only do we talk the talk, but we walk the walk as well.
This is also a good lead-in to another point…
Most of the info you find is from people who make money online only by teaching other people how to make money online.
Here’s the truth:
It’s 10x easier to make money online from teaching people about it than blogging in other niches.
Why? Because convincing someone to buy a $47 product on how to make money online comes with the assumption that they will make the money back!
Selling a $47 book on getting in shape and being healthy takes wayyyyy more work.
We make our income online from our health and fitness blog at Avocadu.com, and we found GREAT success with that blog BEFORE we started this blog to teach others how to do it.
We hope that by doing it this way, you find our content more relatable and applicable to your own niche.
We’re trying to help Lauren’s brother make his first bit of money online, but he’s just so skeptical of everything that he never tries anything.
Don’t be like that! You too can figure this out.
We made $103,457 from our niche blog in our first year without any real blogging experience. I was coming off of being a personal trainer and Lauren a full-time CPA.
There are quite a few legitimate ways to actually make money online.
Here is a brief overview of the 5 real ways to make money online that we will discuss in this article:
They are listed in order of what pays the least to what pays the MOST!
Websites That Pay
There are all kinds of websites that will pay you for various things. Lauren actually started out taking surveys online for extra cash, and it was a good gig for her at the time.
These websites are not going to make you a millionaire and have you throwing yacht parties.
However, they will make you some extra cash and get you those first few paychecks in the mail!
Sometimes, just seeing a little bit of money come in and knowing it’s real is the motivator people need to do bigger and better things!
Here are a great few websites to start with:
- Swagbucks – With Swagbucks, you can make money by taking surveys, answering polls, watching videos, searching the web, playing online games, and much more. You can sign up for Swagbucks here.
- Fiverr – This is a great place to both get tasks done and offer any services others might like. People will typically pay $5 for a task or service. However, you still can make lots of money here. With the right upsells and additional tasks people will generally spend more than $5 for your time and effort. You can check out Fiverr here.
- Inbox Dollars – With Inbox Dollars, you can take surveys, search the web, read emails, shop online, etc. You also get a $5 credit just for signing up. You can sign up for Inbox Dollars here.
- American Consumer Opinion Panel – ACOP is one of the highest rated online survey sites out there! They pay higher amounts than a lot of other companies, and you also have the ability to test out new products on occasion. You can sign up for American Consumer Opinion Panel here.
If you’re going this route, we recommend signing up for several different websites. This allows you to pick and choose what surveys and activities you want to participate in. If you only sign up for one, you may be waiting around for them to make offers to you.
Filling out surveys isn’t your thing? That’s cool! Here’s the next way you can make money online…
There are opportunities to work from at various companies, but they usually come with a few downsides:
- The jobs that pay well but don’t require tons of skills are lucrative because many people want them.
- Most of them don’t pay as much and are generally harder to find than a normal 9-5.
- If you have a skill, doing something like freelancing or writing your blog can pay you considerably more.
- They don’t always have good schedules. A friend of ours works from home but is unable to travel with us to Bali, because has strict hours that she must work online.
Finding them is also difficult, but there are a couple websites you can try:
- Flex Jobs – There are lots of different telecommuting jobs to browse over. You can see some for free or get a paid membership to see everything for only $14.95 a month. You can check out Flex Jobs here.
- Skip the Drive – This website has a lot of different jobs from fortune 500 companies to the occasional startup. You can check out Skip the Drive here.
Again, this isn’t the route we recommended because of the high competition, but it is an option to look into. With the right skill set and interview, you may find the perfect gig for you.
For those of you interested in more making more money than these companies have to offer and the ability to choose your clients, you may want to look into…
I started out as a freelance writer for a popular guys website online called the Brobible.com.
Every week, I would write an article on health and fitness to make a little extra income. Not only that, they would allow me to promote my own website as well and sell an ebook on fitness for college guys.
It’s not just writing either. Almost any online skill you have can be used, including:
- Video Editing
- Video Creation
- Graphic Design
- Virtual Assistant
- Data Entry
You can be hired for more basic tasks as well. Many online businesses are looking for reliable virtual assistants that they can trust (cough** us) that don’t necessarily need a ton of skills.
Some of the best websites:
- Upwork – This is the website we use to hire our copywriters and other tasks. With over 1.5 million users, Upwork provides jobs for every type of freelancer. It’s a great place to start. Check it out here.
- Toptal – Experienced freelancers come here when they have refined their skills and have some work under their belt. If you have an existing portfolio of work you have done, this may be the right site for you. Check it out here.
- Freelancer – Unlike Upwork, instead of pitching your skills to your client, you can show them by competing in contests to prove your skills. Even for the jobs that require fewer skills like being a virtual assistant, there are ways to stand out from the pack. Check it out here.
- Craigslist – It’s not just for “missed connections” or selling your old couch. It’s surprisingly great for finding freelance work. In fact, it’s the tool I used to market my private personal training business, and I got lots of great clients from it. Just beware of scams. Check it out here.
Best Freelance Sites for Writers:
There are lots of ways to make extra money as a writer. The best being to start your own blog, which we talk about below. Here are a few good websites where you can get started publishing your work:
- Listverse – This site pays $100 dollars for each accepted post. The post must be over 1500 words and a list of at least 10 interesting things. Check it out here.
- A List Apart – They pay $200 for every accepted post. The post must be over 1500 words, and they tend to publish less than Listverse or TopTenz. Check it out here.
- TopTenz – They pay $50 dollars for every high-quality article that gets published. The article must be over 1500 words, but they post really often, so you have a good chance of getting your work published. Check it out here.
Again, if writing is your thing, you may want to consider just starting a blog. It’s incredibly easy to get started, and it ensures that your content will always get published.
Driving traffic to your own blog will always make you more money than doing it for someone else.
Sell Things Online
Are you a painter? Do people call you crafty? Can you whittle???
There are tons of online shops and stores where you can sell the things you create to others.
In fact, there are people who have created entire businesses off selling PDF printables and organizers to others.
The limitation is only in how creative you are about what you create.
- Etsy – If you like arts and crafts, Etsy is the place for you. You can sign up, post pictures of your work, and start selling almost immediately. Check it out here.
- Amazon – FBA stands for “Fulfilled by Amazon,” and it’s getting pretty popular. Basically, you buy products (in bulk is best) and ship them to Amazon for them to store. When your products sell, Amazon packs them up, ships them out, and sends you the money (after taking their cut). My sister is working on her FBA business and there are tons of people make BANK doing this.
- Shopify – Here you can create your own store, drive traffic to it, and start selling! The stores are beautiful, and Shopify has a free 14-day trial. Check it out here.
- eBay – This is another great place to sell stuff you don’t need, stuff you’re creating, or even to drop ship! People are ALWAYS on the hunt looking for deals on the items they need. Check it out here.
- Drop Shipping – My buddy Marc runs his entire business buying and selling items on Ebay that he never touches. He makes over 10,000 a month drop shipping and now teaches people how on his Youtube Channel, DSGenie.
These are all great methods, but by far our favorite way to make money online for beginners is…
We make over $20k per month blogging online, and it has totally transformed our lives. The best part is that with a blog, you can get paid in a variety of ways. Blogging is…
- Flexible – You can write what you want when you want to.
- Has passive income potential – Much of the income we make now with Avocadu.com is completely passive, meaning we don’t have to work that much if we don’t want to (but we like to).
- Allows you to monetize your passions – Lauren and I love health and fitness, so the inspiration for our first blog was simple. If you have something you like talking about, blogging is an easy way to bring that thing to life!
There are tons of ways you can make money with your blog:
- Affiliates – One of the first ways we started to make actual money from our blog was with the Amazon Associates program. Basically, Amazon will give you a small percentage of what anyone purchases if you refer them from your link. Like this link to Matcha Green Tea. If you click that and buy, not only do we get a little bit of a commission (6-7%), but we also get that commission on anything you buy on Amazon within the next 24 hours as well.
Here are our Amazon earnings so far in September 2016:
As you can see we have already made $845 this month from Amazon. If you’re interested in learning more about how this program works, you can check out our article on How to Make Money as an Amazon Associate.
- Digital Products – We recommended starting with digital products as an affiliate and then moving on to creating your own.
We do this by selling digital products on health and fitness over at Avocadu.com (i.e. Our 21-Day Fat Loss Challenge). Our sales from last month’s income report just on our Stripe account (we also accept payments via Paypal) were $17,107.
- Membership Programs – Eventually over time and depending on what niche you’re in, you can sell a membership program to your audience. This is a great way to get a steady source of recurring revenue in every month as long as you can keep customers engaged!
- Ads – While we personally don’t like ads and think they aren’t a good way to make money, some people have found great success with ads. For instance, if you are in a niche like recipes where there is a LOT of traffic but not so many buyers these days, having some classy ad space for certain brands can be profitable.
- Courses and Online Lessons – Building a course for an audience is not that hard once you know what information people want and need. There are lots of bloggers we are friends with that sell hundreds of $197 courses a month consistently. I’ll let you do the math on that one.
- Sponsored Posts – Once your blog gets big enough, you will be able to partner with big brands and do sponsored posts. This often is a win-win scenario as you will both make money AND if the product is something you truly use and love, your audience will benefit as well.
Blogging has completely changed our lives and has allowed us the time freedom we have always dreamed of.
- Traveling all over the world
- Waking up when we want to
- Eating healthy and working out
- And living much more fulfilling and enriched lives.
You can check out some of our income reports as well as we provide proof of our earnings and show our followers the different lessons learned month-by-month.
Additional Topics and Resources:
- How to Overcome Your Fear of Blogging
- 29 Best Tips for BEFORE You Start Your Blog
- How to Come Up With a Great Blog Name in 30 Minutes
- FREE 7-Day Blogging Course for Beginners
- Start a Blog, Step-by-Step Beginner’s Guide
Create something awesome today!
Alex & Lauren
Co-Founders, Create and Go
P.S. What are the biggest struggles you are having with your current blog right now? Share them with us in the comments section below, and we will do our best to help!
If you enjoyed this article on how to make extra money online or have any questions, please leave them in the comment section below!
Alex & Lauren
Latest posts by Alex & Lauren (see all)
- From Accountant to Professional Blogging Career: How I Quadrupled My Salary in Two Years - April 23, 2018
- The 4 Phases of Online Blogging Success: Poop to Profits - April 8, 2018
- Why is No One Signing Up for My Email List on My Blog? - April 2, 2018