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How to Earn Money Online: Work, Build, Then Invest

With the pandemic-accelerated shift to the online world, a huge portion of the world was exposed to the potential to make money online. But how are the people who make a side-income, living, or fortune online doing it?

There are three phases to building online wealth that can set you financially free, even if you’re starting from zero-to-little cash in the bank:

  1. Earning quick cash with side hustles
  2. Building entrepreneurial wealth
  3. Buying online businesses

In phase one, you don’t need any cash or experience to start making money online.

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These methods of making money online are going to introduce you to the online world while giving you some supplementary cash for your efforts. Consider it your “online wealth apprenticeship”.

To make this guide easy to follow, we’ve included breakdowns of each money-making method in the following structure:

Total time: how long it takes to carry out the service/do the work.

Setup: the time needed to get started.

How easy to start: what to expect when getting set up.

Age threshold: minimum age requirements.

Payment speed: how quickly you’ll earn money after carrying out the service/how frequently you’ll be paid.

Average pay: how much you can earn.

Need to know: extra considerations.

Requirements: what you need to carry out the service.

Alright, let’s dig in!

1. User Testing

User testing is a service whereby you test websites for companies as if you are one of their customers or a casual site user.

You record your screen and audio while you navigate through the website and comment on your experience.

When doing a user test, you’ll be given a task to complete, for example, in an ecommerce store you might be asked to find a pair of white shoes and add them to the basket. As you’re carrying out this task, you’ll be thinking out loud to give the company insights into what it’s like for a consumer to use their website.

You can sign up to get paid for user testing through sites like Conversion Crimes who offer the best user testing training, or usertesting.com, userbrain.com, and intellizoom.com.

Total time: tests are usually between 20-30 minutes long.

Setup: 1-1.5 hours to sign up and do some training tests.

How easy to start: very easy. Training is clear and easy to follow.

Age threshold: usually 18+.

Payment speed: usually one month.

Average pay: $5-$15 depending on the type of test.

Need to know: work frequency is sporadic. You need to keep an eye on your email inbox for when tests come in and they go pretty quickly as others are also waiting to do the tests.

Requirements: fluent English, age 18+.

2. Online Surveys

This service consists of filling out survey forms for companies for product, service, or industry research.

Some survey providers will post surveys in the account you create when you sign up for you to complete. The service is as simple as answering the questions on the survey, but some of these services include other ways to earn money online, including watching videos and searching the web.

You can sign up for surveys on sites like swagbucks.com, inboxdollars.com, qmee.com and surveyjunkie.com.

Total time: surveys are usually 2-25 minutes long.

Setup: 30mins to 1 hour to create your account.

How easy to start: very easy. Explainer videos often provided.

Age threshold: 13+.

Payment speed: 1-2 days.

Average pay: 50 cents to $20.

Need to know: some surveys pay gift cards instead of cash or points that equate to a cash amount. Surveys pay very little, so be prepared to take a lot regularly to make any significant income.

Requirements: online account like PayPal or a bank account, strong English, age 13+.

3. Amazon Mechanical Turk

Mechanical Turk (MTurk) is a crowdsourcing marketplace that Amazon businesses can use to find workers for simple operational tasks that are best completed by a human. From simple tasks like performing data deduplication to carrying out research.

You can sign up on the Amazon Mechanical Turk website.

Total time: variable depending on the jobs you sign up for.

Setup: 30 seconds to create your account.

How easy to start: straightforward to create an account.

Age threshold: 18+ .

Payment speed: workers are paid on a regular schedule.

Average pay: varies widely depending on the types of work tasks you carry out.

Need to know: the quality of your work is assessed by the requester. If the task wasn’t completed up to par, you may not be paid.

Requirements: age 18+, bank or online payment account such as PayPal.

4. Sell Old Clothes

There are platforms where you can sell your used clothes. For example, Poshmark has a sharing platform where you can post your clothes for sale. They’ll even provide you with prepaid labels to send your clothes.

However, eBay is an open marketplace with a much larger audience.

Total time: time to take photos of your clothes and create your posts. Also time needed to answer customer questions if necessary while your clothes are up for sale.

Setup: a few hours to create your account and publish your clothes for sale.

How easy to start: very easy. You just need to create an account, take some photos of your clothes, and post them for sale.

Age threshold: 18+.

Payment speed: within two business days after the sale.

Average pay: depends on the platform you sell your clothes on and what clothes you sell.

Need to know: depending on the platform, they may only accept certain clothing brands. eBay is open to all brands, though they do carry out authenticity checks on some products.

Requirements: you need clothes to sell with high-quality photos, age 18+.

5. Share Coupons

There are websites that pay you to share coupons you find on the web.

While you’re doing your online shopping, you might come across a promotion on a site or the brand might offer you a coupon for signing up to their newsletter. When you get those coupons, you can share them with couponchief.com and earn money.

Set up: a few minutes to create your account.

How easy to start: you just need to set up your account.

Age threshold: 18+.

Payment speed: you are paid when someone uses your coupon.

Average pay: 2-3% commission on each coupon sale.

Need to know: there might be a limit on how much you can earn from each store you share coupons for.

Requirements: the coupons you sell cannot have been shared before by another user, age 18+.


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