In today's fast-paced digital world, making money isn't all about the traditional 9-to-5 office-based grind. Thanks to the internet taking over and the rise of working from home, there are a ton of online job options.
But the standard online job isn't for everyone. Some of us are craving something different – a more exciting and out-of-the-box way to make some cash to add to our income.
If you don't want to spend all day every day sat in front of the computer and would rather take full advantage of the booming gig economy to spend as little as a few hours per week making money online, check out these 10 alternatives to the typical online job.
10 great alternatives to online jobs for making money
- Virtual assistance
- Testing websites
- Online surveys
- Matched betting
- Social media management
- Online tutoring
- Freelance writing
- Affiliate marketing
- Reselling clothes
1. Virtual assistance
If it's the 9-to-5 nature of traditional online jobs that you find offputting, but you're skilled in things like data entry, scheduling appointments and providing customer support, virtual assistance could be the path for you.
Becoming a virtual assistant (VA) means you offer your services to businesses and entrepreneurs virtually, from your home, or anywhere with an internet connection. This flexible gig lets you decide when and where you want to work, so there's no need to be sat at your desk for eight hours a day.
How to get started with virtual assistance:
- Identify your skills and services: Take a good look at what you're good at and figure out the services you can offer as a VA. It could be stuff like handling admin tasks, social media, content creation, customer support, research, or anything else you're skilled in.
- Show off your experience: Put together a snazzy resume or portfolio showcasing your skills and past work experiences. Share any cool achievements that make you a perfect fit for the VA gig.
- Create your home office: Set up a workspace at home with a reliable internet connection, a computer, and any other tools you'll need to rock your tasks.
- Pick your niche: Think about specializing in a specific area or industry. Focusing on a niche can make you look like a superstar to potential clients who need specialized help.
- Decide your rates: Figure out what services you'll offer and set your prices. You can charge by the hour, a flat fee per project, or even a regular payment for ongoing work.
- Get seen online: Create slick profiles on freelancing platforms and job boards. Having an online presence will make it a breeze for clients to find and hire you.
- Apply for jobs: Start applying for VA gigs on freelancing platforms, job boards, or directly reach out to clients.
2. Testing websites
Testing websites is a simple and flexible side hustle, perfect for spending a few hours a week making some extra cash online to top up your income.
You use websites like UserTesting and Userbrain to take part in usability tests, surveys, and user feedback sessions where you share opinions and experiences about various websites, apps, or products.
It's a win-win situation: companies and researchers get valuable insights to improve their offerings, and you get rewarded for your time and effort.
How to get started with testing websites:
- Look for reliable testing websites: Do some research to find reputable testing platforms. Check out reviews and make sure they have clear payment terms and a history of offering plenty of test opportunities.
- Create your profile: Once you've picked the testing websites you like, sign up and create a profile. Fill in all the details honestly to increase your chances of getting matched with relevant tests.
- Pass the qualification tests: Some websites might ask you to take qualification tests or surveys to see if you're a good fit for certain tests. It's like matching you up with the right crowd.
- Get your tools ready: For some tests, you might need to install screen recording software or browser extensions. Just follow the instructions the website gives you to set everything up.
- Get invites and act fast: Once your profile is set and you've passed the qualifications, get ready for invites! Keep an eye on your email or the website's dashboard for new opportunities, and be quick to respond.
- Do the tests on time: When you get an invite, don't dilly-dally! Complete the test within the given time frame. Sometimes there are limited slots, so acting fast improves your chances.
- Give honest feedback: During the test, be genuine and provide helpful feedback based on your real user experience. Your thoughts can help companies make their websites or products better.
- Get paid: After you finish a test, you'll get paid according to the website's rules. Some pay right away, while others have a threshold you need to reach before cashing out.
3. Online surveys
For a quick and simple way to earn money online in your spare time with absolutely no experience or qualifications needed, start taking part in online surveys.
How to get started with online surveys:
- Find reputable survey websites: Look for trusted survey websites or platforms. Read reviews and check out their payment methods to make sure you're signing up for legit opportunities.
- Create your survey profiles: Once you've found some survey websites you like, sign up and create your profiles. Filling out your profiles honestly helps match you with surveys that fit your interests and demographics.
- Be on the lookout for survey invites: Keep an eye on your email or the survey website's dashboard. You'll start receiving survey invitations with details about how long they take and what rewards you'll get.
- Complete surveys: When you get a survey invite, don't wait around! Jump right into the survey and give your honest answers. It's usually a mix of multiple-choice questions and your thoughts on stuff.
- Collect your rewards: After finishing a survey, you'll earn rewards like cash, gift cards, or points. Some websites offer instant payouts, while others may have a threshold to reach before cashing out.
- Sign up for multiple websites: To maximize your earnings, sign up for multiple survey websites. That way, you'll get more invites and more opportunities to make money.
- Stay consistent: While you won't become a millionaire overnight, consistency pays off. Try to complete surveys regularly to see your earnings grow.
4. Matched betting
Looking for a fun way to make some extra cash that doesn't feel like work and takes just a few hours of your time each week? Look no further than matched betting.
Don't let the "betting" in the title scare you – matched betting is a legit and risk-free way of making a guaranteed profit, it isn't about luck or gambling skills, it's pure math and strategy (and websites like ProfitDuel can help with all that).
Here's how it works: You place bets on all possible outcomes of an event using free bets and bookmaker promotions. This guarantees a profit, no matter the result.
How to get started with matched betting:
- Understand the basics: Familiarize yourself with the concept of matched betting. Read guides, watch tutorials, or join matched betting forums to get a good grasp of how it works.
- Find a reputable matched betting service or platform: Look for a reliable matched betting service or website (like ProfitDuel). These platforms provide tools, calculators, and step-by-step instructions to help you find profitable betting opportunities.
- Place a qualifying bet: Place a qualifying bet with your own money to unlock the free bet or bonus offered by the bookmaker. This is a necessary step to access the matched betting opportunities.
- Use the free bet for matched betting: Once you have the free bet, use it for matched betting.
- Stay organized: Keep a record of all your bets and profits. This will help you track your earnings and manage your matched betting activities efficiently.
5. Social media management
Social media management is a super in-demand gig at the moment. Help businesses and individuals rock their online presence by creating and curating content, scheduling posts, responding to comments and messages and much more.
This can be done from the comfort of your own home and you can choose when you work, resulting in a perfect work-life balance.
How to get started with social media management
- Develop a portfolio: Gather examples of your work, such as sample posts, graphics, or social media campaigns. Create a portfolio that demonstrates your skills and style as a social media manager.
- Join freelancing platforms: Create profiles on freelancing websites like Upwork, Fiverr, or Freelancer, where businesses often look for social media managers. Customize your profile to showcase your expertise and portfolio.
- Set your rates: Determine your pricing structure, whether it's an hourly rate, a monthly retainer, or project-based fees. Consider your level of experience and the complexity of the work you'll be doing.
- Stay updated: Social media is constantly evolving, so keep yourself informed about the latest trends, algorithm changes, and best practices. Follow industry blogs, attend webinars, and join social media communities.
- Deliver quality work: Once you land your first clients, deliver top-notch work and excellent customer service. Happy clients are more likely to refer you to others and provide you with repeat business.
6. Online tutoring
Online tutoring allows you to make money online in a way that lets you call the shots and work whenever you want, all from the cozy corners of your home.
You can teach one-on-one or have a blast with group classes through video calls or special tutoring websites like Tutor.com. It's like having a virtual classroom that connects you with students from all over the world!
So, if you're good at something – whether it's academics, specialized skills or even something unique – jump on the online tutoring train and make a difference while making some extra cash.
How to get started with online tutoring
Identify your expertise: Figure out what subjects or skills you excel in and would love to teach. It could be academic subjects, languages, music, arts, coding, or any other talent you possess.
- Plan your tutoring sessions: Create a plan for your tutoring sessions. Decide on the topics you'll cover, the teaching approach you'll use, and the resources you'll need.
- Choose your target audience: Decide who you want to teach. It could be school students, college students, adults, or even kids. Tailor your teaching style to match their needs and learning abilities.
- Set your pricing: Determine how much you'll charge for your tutoring services. Consider your expertise, the time you'll invest, and what the market is willing to pay.
- Set up your online presence: Create profiles on tutoring platforms like Wyzant, Chegg Tutors, or VIPKid. You can also set up your own website to showcase your expertise and offer your services.
- Get the right tools: Make sure you have the necessary tools for online tutoring, like a good internet connection, a computer or tablet, a webcam, and a microphone.
- Deliver quality sessions: During your tutoring sessions, be patient and engaging, and adapt your teaching style to the students' needs. Providing a positive learning experience will keep students coming back and referring you to others.
7. Freelance writing
With everything going digital, a load of businesses are after talented writers to create awesome content that connects with their audience.
If you think crafting blog posts, articles, website content and more is your thing, the freelance writing gig has your name all over it.
And of course, as is the nature of freelancing, you have total freedom over when and where you work, and also which and how many projects you take on.
How to get started with freelance writing
- Discover your writing niche: Identify the topics or industries you enjoy writing about the most. Whether it's travel, technology, health, or any other area, finding your niche will help you focus and attract the right clients.
- Build a writing portfolio: Create a portfolio of your best writing samples. If you don't have any published work, start by writing sample articles or blog posts on topics relevant to your chosen niche.
- Explore freelance platforms: Sign up on freelance platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer, or ProBlogger, where clients post writing gigs. These platforms can be a great starting point to find your first clients.
- Pitch directly to clients: Don't be afraid to reach out directly to businesses, websites, or publications in your niche. Craft personalized pitches that showcase your expertise and how your writing can add value to their audience.
- Deliver on time and communicate: When you land a writing gig, be reliable and deliver your work on time. Keep open communication with your clients and be responsive to any feedback or revisions.
8. Affiliate marketing
You get to be a matchmaker between sellers and buyers, and the best part is, anyone can do it! You don't need fancy degrees or superhero skills. As long as you've got an online presence, you're all set to rock the affiliate marketing game.
How to get started with affiliate marketing:
Choose your niche: Decide on a niche or area of interest that you're passionate about and that has a potential market. It could be fitness, fashion, tech, personal development, or anything else that you love and think others would too.
- Research affiliate programs: Look for affiliate programs that offer products or services related to your chosen niche. Many companies, online retailers, and platforms have affiliate programs, so you'll have plenty of options.
- Join affiliate programs: Sign up for affiliate programs that align with your niche. Some programs may require approval, but most are open to anyone interested in promoting their products.
- Get your affiliate links: Once approved, you'll receive unique affiliate links or tracking codes. These links are how the companies track sales and referrals generated through your promotions.
- Build your online presence: Create a blog, website, or social media profiles to showcase your chosen niche and your affiliate products. Having an online platform gives you a place to share valuable content and promote your affiliate links.
- Create valuable content: Focus on creating high-quality and valuable content that attracts your target audience. Whether it's blog posts, videos, or social media updates, make sure your content provides value and resonates with your followers.
- Promote your affiliate products: Start incorporating your affiliate links into your content. Share product reviews, recommendations, or how-to guides that highlight the benefits of the products you're promoting.
Whether it's travel, food, personal finance, parenting, or any other subject, as a blogger, you get to create engaging and valuable content that resonates with your audience.
As your blog gains traction and attracts more readers, you can monetize it in several ways, such as displaying ads, using affiliate marketing, offering sponsored content, or even selling digital products or courses.
How to get started with blogging:
- Choose a niche: Decide on a specific topic or niche that you're passionate and knowledgeable about. It could be anything from travel, cooking, personal finance, lifestyle, health, or even a unique hobby. A focused niche helps attract a targeted audience.
- Pick a domain name: Choose a catchy and relevant domain name for your blog. This is the web address that readers will use to find your blog. Make it memorable and easy to spell.
- Select a blogging platform: Choose a blogging platform to create and manage your blog. WordPress.org is one of the most popular platforms due to its flexibility and customization options. Other options include Blogger, Wix, and Squarespace.
- Get web hosting: If you choose WordPress.org, you'll need web hosting. Many providers offer hosting services, such as Bluehost, SiteGround, or HostGator. Compare features and prices to find the best fit for your needs.
- Set up your blog: Install your chosen blogging platform and customize your blog's appearance using themes and templates. Create essential pages like the homepage, about page, contact page, and any other relevant sections.
- Create compelling content: Start writing and publishing high-quality, engaging, and informative blog posts that resonate with your target audience. Use a friendly and authentic tone to connect with your readers.
- Promote your blog: Share your blog posts on social media platforms, engage with online communities, and connect with fellow bloggers in your niche. Building a presence on social media helps attract readers to your blog.
- Be consistent: Consistency is key. Set a regular posting schedule that works for you and stick to it. Regular updates keep your audience engaged and returning for more content.
- Monetize your blog: Once you've established your blog and gained a following, explore different monetization strategies like display advertising, affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, or selling digital products.
10. Reselling clothes
Have a wardrobe overflowing with clothes that aren't your vibe anymore or just don't get enough wear? Reselling clothes is an awesome way to earn some extra cash by decluttering and refreshing your wardrobe.
How to get started with reselling clothes?
- Closet clean-up: Begin by going through your wardrobe and picking out pieces that you no longer wear or love. Focus on items that are in good condition and still have that trendy charm.
- Sort and evaluate: Separate your clothes into categories like tops, bottoms, dresses, accessories, etc. Examine each piece closely – look for any flaws, stains, or signs of wear. Be honest about the condition to set accurate expectations for buyers.
- Quality photos: Capture your clothes in good lighting with clear photos. Showcase details like patterns, textures, and any unique features. High-quality images can make your items more appealing to potential buyers.
- Create descriptions: Write detailed and engaging descriptions for each item. Include important information like brand, size, color, fabric, and any noteworthy characteristics. Be transparent about any wear and tear.
- Set prices: Price your items fairly. Research similar items on the platform you'll be using to get an idea of the going rates. Consider factors like brand, condition, and original price when setting your prices.
- Choose a platform: Select an online marketplace that suits your style and target audience. Popular platforms include Poshmark, eBay, Depop, Mercari, and even Instagram. Sign up, create an account, and familiarize yourself with the platform's features.
- List your items: Use your descriptions and photos to create enticing listings for each item. Be clear and concise in your titles and descriptions, and make sure to use relevant keywords to improve visibility.
- Shipping and packaging: Understand the shipping process of your chosen platform. Some platforms provide shipping labels, while others require you to handle shipping yourself. Invest in suitable packaging materials to ensure items arrive safely.
- Promote your shop: Spread the word about your shop on social media platforms, like Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. Share your listings, engage with potential buyers, and use relevant hashtags to expand your reach.
- Customer service: Provide excellent customer service by responding promptly to inquiries, addressing buyer concerns, and ensuring a smooth buying experience. Positive interactions can lead to repeat customers and positive reviews.
10 alternatives to online jobs for making money: a recap
In a world bursting with online possibilities, stepping out of the box of regular online jobs can lead you into a world of thrilling options. Think about diving into the gig economy, trying your hand at reselling, or exploring other roads we've talked about – they're like invitations to reinvent how you earn.
Virtual assistance, website testing, surveys, and even matched betting show how tech has reshaped the ways in which we can earn some extra cash. It's time to turn your time online into a money-making adventure, using your skills and smarts.
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