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You can make extra money from home with many different types of part-time or full-time work-from-home and business options — that can be done virtually. Fortunately, the internet has made it easy for people to not only work remotely but also take full advantage of plenty of profitable online business opportunities. These legitimate ways to make money at home abound — from selling goods and services to earning money as an influence.
Although making money online can be incredibly convenient and flexible, it’s important to choose the best work-from-home arrangement that suits your skillset, experience and lifestyle. Here are some ideas and tips that help you choose and expand virtual income streams that work for you.
Blogging involves creating content, typically for niche topics or special interests, that can be monetized in a variety of ways. Blogs have several strategies to monetize their content and make money online: on-site ads through platforms such as Google’s AdSense, sponsored content, affiliate marketing and product or service sales.
Bloggers can also use their website for exposure which could result in bookings for paid speaking opportunities, book publishing deals and, in some cases, TV shows and appearances. Starting a blog on WordPress or Squarespace can be a grind in the beginning, but it definitely pays off when your content takes off, providing plenty of passive income in the process.
Gone are the days when writers were considered “starving artists.” Nowadays, content is king and the demand for copywriting is increasing at an increasing rate. When it comes to writing, riches are in the niches, as the topics you cover could affect how much you earn either as a salaried or freelance writer (or even a transcriptionist). Popular topics to cover include finance, business, lifestyle, parenting, health, fitness and career development.
You can get started as a writer by creating a compelling LinkedIn profile that also displays writing samples. Content directions often search for writers on places like UpWork and Fiverr.com, too. Expand your service offering by providing proofreading and editing services. The best part? You can do all your work from the comfort of your home and in your own spare time.
For any business or tasks that can be run virtually, you’ll find that the demand for virtual assistants is skyrocketing. There are virtual assistants that can help with general tasks like setting appointments and answering emails, but there are also virtual assistants that can provide specialized assistant services for:
Engage in retail arbitrage
Retail arbitrage entails buying a product at a lower price in order to sell it at a higher price, for a profit. This means you need to have a good eye for deals while knowing their resale value on the open market.
You can search for deals at discount stores, consignment shops and wholesale outfits. If you’re reselling higher-priced items, consider a small business loan to help you buy your inventory. No matter the wares, buy low, then mark it up and sell high. Here are some marketplaces where you can re-sell your goods:
If you don’t like the idea of scavenging for deals, there are other types of retail arbitrage that don’t require you to touch any inventory at all, like dropshipping. With dropshipping, you still buy low and sell high, but you’ll ship directly to the seller.
One example of this is real estate wholesaling. It involves negotiating prices down on distressed properties in order to resell them to an investor at a higher price — without ever seeing or owning the property itself.
From stock photography and videos to arts and crafts, shoppers have a huge demand for unique things that only someone with your know-how and style can produce. You can sell your creations in your own online store or via e-commerce marketplaces like Etsy, Handmade at Amazon, Shopify, IndieMade and others. You can also sell your crafts on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace, etc. — even if it’s just as a side gig.
Not sure what to sell? Here are some ideas:
With learning platforms such as Udemy taking off in the past few years (as of this writing, it has 40 million users), learning online has proved its staying power.
Online education as a business idea involves teaching children or adults specific subjects like music instruction or English as a second language. This may also include providing online tutoring services or creating online courses.
You can provide these services as an independent business owner with your own website and a good internet connection or sync with an educational service like an online school or tutoring agency to earn money in online education.
Professional voiceovers are found in all types of content from eLearning and audiobooks, to podcast and YouTube intros, commercials and more. This type of side-hustle is especially exciting because you can start small and hit it big as a union talent (SAG-AFTRA) performing for national TV commercials, radio spots, feature-length films, animated works and video games. Even if you don’t make it into the “big leagues,” there’s plenty of work on the amateur circuit which can still pay quite well.
To get going with this side hustle, you’ll need the right equipment and a platform to promote your services. Many people use sites like Voice.com or Voice123.com to showcase their work. Although it’s not required, many successful voice talents hire a coach to keep them at the top of their performance and business game.
Become a social media influencer
Before you roll your eyes at the suggestion, consider this: there are some productive, helpful influencers out there that actually make the world a better place. For example, there are influencers that help people with personal finance, gardening, natural childbirth, discount travel, navigating difficult relationships, rescuing animals, learning new money-making skills and more.
The great thing about being an influencer is that you can craft the position to suit your lifestyle and work-life balance preferences. You don’t have to have 8 different social media accounts or be in front of a camera all the time and promote products and services you aren’t 100% crazy about. To get started, pick the desired medium — podcasting, video, social media, email lists, etc. and begin creating content around whichever subject you’d like to influence.
Even as the pandemic comes to a close, many employers are keeping the status quo established in the last couple of years — maintaining fully remote positions. The good news is that you don’t have to look for a needle in a haystack anymore. A simple query on a job search engine like ZipRecruiter typically provides hundreds of positions offering partially or fully remote options.
Before you get started, take a moment to spruce up your resumes, create a custom cover letter and canvas your existing network for ideas and openings. If it makes sense, take some time to brush up on your skills or go for a certification that could make you a competitive candidate.
If you can land a great job working from home, you stand to get a steady paycheck, plus benefits to boot. If done the right way, this route could be a great option for making money from home.
Rent out your extras
Extra room? Extra car? Extra swimming pool? Extra jet? These are all things you can rent out to others for extra cash.
Although these ventures require you to own or have access to something to rent out, you don’t necessarily have to be present to make this business model work. Many of these models work with a co-hosting arrangement which helps manage your assets and operations. No matter your level of involvement, the income still hits your account the same.
Here’s a list of sites and apps where you can rent out your extras:
While many people think about survey sites such as Swagbucks (a company where users fill out online surveys and are paid in gift cards), working from home can be a full-time job that can include transcription services, pet sitting, freelance writing or graphic design, and others we haven’t mentioned here.
You show know that making money online can be an incredibly convenient, lucrative endeavor, but it’s not without challenges or risks. If you’ll be working on your own, it’s very much like starting a business — so don’t expect to make a lot of money immediately.
Also, because the barrier to entry is so low, there’s a lot of competition. This means it will take even more hard work to stand out and differentiate yourself from the crowd.
This shouldn’t be a deal-breaker, but rather inform your choices as you get further along in your home-based money-making journey. When appropriate, treat your income stream like a business. Consider forming an LLC or similar business entity, getting a business checking account, tracking your income along with related expenses, and filing your business returns each tax year.
Making money from home may sound like a laid-back, decadent undertaking, but you should take it seriously (even if you’re working in your jammies every day). If you do, you might find that you enjoy it and could end up making some serious coin in the process.
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