The gig economy is now part of our culture, and the e-commerce platforms have built an inclusive playing field where anyone can sell their products or services. From taking odd jobs from Task Rabbit to renting out your rooms through Airbnb, it’s now easy to find opportunities for making money online.
And so there are many time-tested ideas for making money online, from taking paid surveys to selling used clothes, to flipping your iPhone or sneakers to someone outside the country, or even buying lowly priced products locally and reselling them on Amazon at a higher price.
And yet with each passing day, the online world keeps churning new opportunities.
Let’s evaluate emerging opportunities, whether it’s entirely new ways of making some extra income on the side or fresh approaches to existing methods. Some are easy to take advantage of, but some require effort, creativity, time, and some overhead. So as, with anything, do your due diligence and go only for opportunities that are suitable for you.
Can You Start Making Money Online Now?
How to Make Money Online
1. Tap into the Gig Economy
The gig economy is now well-established thanks to companies like Fiverr, Upwork, Grubhub, and Rover. But gig terrain is continually shifting, and you can find new ways of making an income from this elastic style of work.
Take the ride-sharing behemoth, Uber. The company now has Uber Works, an app that connects gig workers to a wide range of temporary jobs. The Uber Works was initially rolled out in Chicago, where the company is working with businesses that offer various gigs, from bartending to assembly-line work.
Uber Works isn’t the only opportunity in the gig economy. There is also Drum, an app that links businesses to a pool of on-demand salespeople. And if you’re a restaurant worker, there is Pared, which links line cooks, servers, dishwashers, and roving chefs to shifts. There is also Steady, an app that not only makes finding gigs easier but also helps you track your income.
In a nutshell, the gig economy is evolving, and new opportunities that allow people with diverse skills to make money online are arising.
2. Tap Into the Rental Economy
Thanks to the rental economy, you can now make some money with almost everything your own. The model that was bought to the mainstream by Airbnb now spans way beyond renting rooms.
Some of the Airbnb-style marketplaces include Rent the Backyard, a firm that helps homeowners transform unused outdoor space to rental properties by taking on the cost of building small apartments in the backyards. Then there is Swimply where you can let your swimming pool, or Jettly, where you can charter a private jet.
Other platforms like Turo, the car-sharing app, have been around for some time. There is also the “Airbnb of camping world” Himpcamp. Renting out activities has become a trend too. For instance, there is BobAppertour, a company that enables you to invite strangers for a meal. The list is endless.
The rental economy is continuously evolving, and there are new opportunities to make some money by loaning out almost any of your belongings.
3. You Don’t have to be a Celebrity to be an Influencer
These days even with a 1000 followers on Youtube or Instagram, you can attract sponsors. So you don’t have to be a huge celebrity to earn extra income through social media.
In marketing jargon, these small online tastemakers are referred to as non-influencers or micro-influencers. Nano-influencers typically have 2000 or fewer followers, while micro-influencers’ number of followers ranges from 2000 to 50,000 followers.
Small-scale influencers are attractive because advertisers value engagement, and the huge social media stars don’t guarantee great results. Actually, influencers with 1000 followers typically generate about 80 percent higher engagement compared to those who boast of 100,000 followers.
Many of these nano and micro-influencers are ordinary people documenting trades or hobbies. They could be offering cleaning tips or own an adorable and photogenic hedgehog. And so their followers enjoy more intimate experiences and personal connections. Their recommendations are, therefore, viewed as more trustworthy.
A study revealed that about 80 percent of millennials either have a negative view or are indifferent to celebrity endorsements. This trend has led to brands ramping up their micro-influencer budget to 40 percent of the influencer budgets, while only allocating 28 percent to celebrity influencers; this is based on a 2019 study.
While, as a micro-influencer, you might not command six-figure endorsement deals, you can still make good money. An influencer whose number of followers ranges from 5000 to 10,000 can be paid up to $500 for each post, an audience of 25,000 followers can net you more hundreds of dollars.
“But how do I get sponsors on board?” You can contact relevant brands directly, but there is also a whole industry that specializes in linking sponsors to the right influencers; this includes industry players like Tribe, TapInfluence, Grapevine, Fohr, and many others.
While building a substantial social media following is not easy, you can still make money with a modest but active audience.
4. Create an Online Course
If you’re an expert in a given topic, you can package your knowledge into a high-value and useful course and sell it online.
Creating, debuting, and marketing a course takes considerable upfront effort, but the long-time earning potential is enormous.
Knowledge products like courses and ebooks can provide you with passive income. Once you’ve put in the upfront effort and time, you can continue to make money off them for years with just a bit of regular updates and marketing.
“But how do I go about creating a course?”
● Build an audience by providing free and valuable content.
● Explore and know the type of content that your audience finds valuable – this should serve as the basis of your course ideas.
● Survey your audience and find out if any of them are willing to pay for the courses and secure pre-orders. (Don’t spend your time on a course unless you have proved that someone is willing to for pay it.)
● Create the course content.
● Launch and market your course. The success of a course is hinged you presenting it to the right people. Your audience, however small, is the perfect place to start.
5. Test Websites
You most likely have a good idea of what makes a great website. Does the design make it easy for users to navigate? Is the content relevant and useful? Fortunately, there are many people out there who’re seeking your opinion. And, they are willing to pay you good money for it (some websites pay $30 per hour or $10 per 20 minutes.)
To test sites, all you need to do is visit the website in question and document your thoughts and reaction as you navigate through it. To get started on website testing, you should sign up for some of the popular testing service providers like Userlytics, Usertesting.com, Userfeel, TestingTime, and TryMyUI.
6. Find Remote work
More and more businesses, especially startups, are taking the remote work route – where you utilize online communication and collaboration tools and work from any location. Access to remote work is not limited to the 20-something tech whizzes either. In fact, a lot of the remote jobs are customer support positions and other customer-facing positions, and so you don’t need super-specialized skill sets to be eligible for one.
To make it even better, a lot of jobs aren’t full-time either, and so the remote work can be a side gig.
Here are other ways you can start making money online now:
1. Become a virtual assistant
2. Become a tutor
3. Become a travel consultant
4. Sell your videos or photos
5. Teach English
6. Write software reviews
7. Create a podcast
8. Create and sell crafts on Etsy
9. Launch a youtube channel
10. Test websites
11. Narrate audiobooks
12. Sell your services in industry-specific sites like Topal, Cloudpeeps or 99Designs
13. Sell your products on Shopify
14. Help people with tax prep
The Opportunities are Endless, Start Making Money Online Today
With the explosion of social media, the evolution of the gig and rental economies, and the increased acceptance of remote work, there has never been a better time to find myriad ways of making money online.
From using your social media to pitch products to hiring out your pet or your swimming pool, there’s certainly more than a few ways of bolstering your financial security by making money online.