(These views are the view of the Author and not necessarily the view of Valley News)
Making money and how it can benefit your life
The chances are that you need to make money. Unless you won the lottery, discovered a hidden treasure or were born with a proverbial silver spoon in your mouth, you need to make at least enough money to put a roof over your head and food on the table. Even if you are meeting your basic needs, you probably could use more money.
Why Do You Need Money?
Maybe you are in debt. The average household debt in the UK is more than 15,000 pounds. Many are paying as much as 3,000 pounds a year in interest on that debt. And it is making people unhappy. Nearly 40% of Millenials in the UK say that debt and money worries are causing them stress.
Even if you are not in debt, you may have dreams that require more money than you have. You may want to travel, buy a bigger house, or splurge on fancier clothes and jewelry. More importantly, you may want to grow as a person, take care of your loved ones, and support important causes.
The truth is money gives us more than just the means to survive. Money can facilitate freedom and power. While money may not buy happiness, it surely can lead to peace of mind.
How to Make Money
The first thing most people think of when they need money is to start applying for jobs. However, many are discovering that getting a job is not necessarily the best way to make money. Some simply do not like answering to a boss, but there are also practical reasons to look at other ways to generate funds.
Working a conventional job is trading your time for money, and that limits your income. You have a finite amount of time, and an employer will decide how much to compensate you for those limited hours. Further, you want to keep as much of your time as possible.
Relying on one source of income is risky. Your employer could go out of business or decide to downsize, and you likely have little influence over either of these possibilities. Even if you have a conventional job, consider a second way to generate income as a backup plan.
Finally, the gig economy is the new economy. More and more people want the freedom and flexibility of freelancing, contract work, or self-employment. In response, companies are moving to these models. The lifetime career with one company and a gold watch retirement are things of the past.
Here are 48 ways you can make money. Some require specific skills or tools, but most are accessible to many people. A few of these opportunities will only generate some extra spending money. But, you may be able to turn some of these ideas into full-blown careers.
This list will get you started. Try out a few of these projects and see what is a good fit. You may even find that the process of discovery leads you to an even wider world of opportunity.
1. Take A Survey
Let’s start with the basics – have you ever thought about trying to take a survey? Taking surveys for a living is a little dull, but it’s easy money. And you can do it for a few hours in the morning, before spending your afternoon doing more meaningful (and lucrative work). As a way to get a few pennies in the bank to save up for something or to get you back into the world of work, though, taking surveys is a great idea. We recommend that you give it a try: you will soon notice a pretty big difference in the way that you work.
There are plenty of survey sites out there, such as Swagbucks and Survey Junkie, so you can get signed up and taking online surveys in a short space of time. It’s not a great sum of money per-survey, but it’s better than a kick in the teeth, right?
While it will not be for everyone, it’s definitely going to be suitable for someone. That should make it much easier for you to start making a few bucks in a short space of time, and to work towards more financially rewarding opportunities in time.
2. Market Assistance
Similar to the above, a decent way to make a living – if a little dull at times – is market research for companies. Many firms, including the likes of Vindale Research, will be happy to pay you money to contribute to their market research and collect information. Basically, companies want to know more about what their customers and consumers actually want – and so they will send you information and questionnaires to fill out. It’s a more consumer-driven approach to the above idea of taking surveys, really.
For many people, though, it’s a great way for you to make a little bit of extra money. The money can fluctuate wildly, though; one day you could be doing surveys worth as much as $50; other times you could be filling out questionnaires for less than $1. The length of time they take to complete and the qualifications that you can bring to the table will determine how much you are going to be offered to take on something like this.
Make no mistake, though; this is easily one of the best ways to bring in a bit of extra money without really having to push out the boat. While it might mean contributing more hours than you would have first intended to the process, market research is a good way to supplement your income. While we could not recommend it as your primary source of income, as a small side-hustle it is probably one of the best places that you could start with!
3. Focus Groups
A really interesting way to make a living is to put yourself forward into focus groups. This is a great way to essentially use your thoughts and opinions on certain subjects to get paid for it. However, you do need to know what you are talking about when it comes to being part of focus groups: you can’t just turn up, talk gibberish, and collect your cash. You need to be able to contribute. If you want to look for a good set of focus groups to join-up with, then either look for ‘focus groups’ in your location or simply check out FocusGroup.com.
They have become a popular choice for a lot of people and can help you to make a decent amount of money. You could be reviewing TV commercials, talking about product releases, or take just about any kind of work that would be suited to the kind of person that you are. It’s a hard job to do at times, but it’s something that you could do part-time and really supplement your monthly income.
With some studies paying well in excess of $100 or giving out some cool gift cards for not much work, you could get a nice little sum of money there to spend or to save-up simply by giving your opinion. So long as you are open, honest, and avoid just saying the same old generic stuff, this could be a viable option to boost your income in the long-term, so try it out.
4. Delivering Via Postmates
One of the best ways to start making a quick living is to start delivering using Postmates. This has become a quality part of the ‘gig economy’, and many people are making a part-time and full-time living through this one service. It’s a good chance for you to work on this full-time, but you could also use this to help supplement your income when using some of the other systems we have lined up for you in this guide.
Postmates is a brilliant starting place as you pay absolutely nothing to get started. You can then set your own hours, and work as many hours as you would like. The fact you get 100% of what you earn with Postmates is a nice touch, too; a lot of these sites take a lot of the money that you should be taking home for yourself.
Postmates works well because you just need to go and create an account and sign-up and get the app on your phone. This would give you the chance to start working in the relatively short-term, and you can pick up shifts and jobs within a day or two of signing up. By accepting delivery offers, you will be doing a lot of moving around and transit – but you will get the chance to work your own hours and do what you want to do with your own time.
It’s good because you could do this for a few hours a week alongside other jobs that you have picked up, meaning there’s no forced commitment like other delivery jobs.
5. Matched Betting
One of the best places that we recommend you take a look at for some inspiration and ideas is to try out some matched betting. For many people, matched betting is their secret to making a good amount of money through the gambling system. Students to the self-employed can do this with just a few pounds in their back pocket, and the potential rewards are absolutely massive. Just make sure you are over the age of 18 – you cannot bet without being the correct age to start gambling.
However, the reason why this is such a good earning opportunity is that it is 100% legal, and you don’t pay any tax at all on your earnings. It can take time at first, and you might make some mistakes.
With the help of matched betting, though, you have the chance to make a fair amount of money in a relatively short space of time. How this works is simple: you will be using the numerous free bets and promotions handed out by the hundreds of online betting sites available. Then, you match-up that bet on a betting exchange. By using matched betting, you take out all of the gambling challenges from the process.
How so? Because by using a matched betting system, you make sure that you are covering both ends. You use your free bet on the betting site to cover one of the outcomes, and then you go on a betting exchange and you cover the alternative. So, you would be betting for a win for a certain team, for example, on the betting site. On the exchange, you bet for that not to happen.
This allows you to use that free bet to essentially cover yourself, and make sure that you could be bringing in a nice, tidy little sum alongside what you wanted to earn. For many people, matched betting is their ideal way to make money without working!
6. Playing With Savings
Another cool money trick that you could pull is using savings accounts to make a living. Now, this is something we would normally hesitate to recommend that you try out: the sheer potential for failure is pretty high if you don’t know what you re doing. However, if you have a few pounds lying around that you could put into a bank account, you should be doing so in a high-interest savings account. You can open up a high-yield savings account in about ten minutes online, and you have so many options to pick from that you just need to decide who has the best offer.
Once you do that, you could be turning your money into free cash just by having it sit in a savings account. While we doubt you have a spare $100,000 lying around, some savings account could turn that $10,000 into $2,000/year extra, just through interest rates alone. So, even putting $2,000 away would produce $200/year extra on top of what you have already have.
It’s one of those things; put all of your profits that you make from any of the side hustles we have listed here, and you can soon start making a lot of money from the money you have already earned. Yes, it means being quite forceful with how you use your money and how you spend – and how you save – but the benefits are that you are putting your money to work and earning on your behalf.
7. Make The Most Of Cashback
Seen as we are talking about getting your money to do all the work for you, have you ever thought about using cashback to help spread-out your income? It is possible. With various platforms such as Ibotta, you can spend a lot of time making the most of cashback offers on just about everything that you buy. If you are looking to make some money, you might have to invest a little to make some back – it’s a common business principle that is shown to be very effective here.
If you are serious about bringing in a bit more money, then consider looking into using Ibotta. All that you need to do is open up an account, pick up some of the offers that you see on Ibotta to your account, and go buy those items at the correct store. Then, upload your receipt and boom! You will be given your money back.
You won’t earn much per year doing this, but it’s something that you could use to make your grocery shopping all a bit cheaper. Every little helps when you are trying to get your money to stretch further, so keep that in mind. Often, all it takes is a plan to make the most of your cashback opportunities by using an app like Ibotta.
It’s not going to be a way to make a living, but it’s going to help make sure you are spending a bit less on commonly bought goods.
8. Virtual Assistance
If you are someone who is organised and does not mind spending a lot of time online every day, you could easily get into the world of virtual assistance. Many online platforms will be happy to help you take on this kind of work from home job, and it’s the kind of job that could be helping you bring in as much as $50 per hour if you are happy to work at it.
However, you will need a variable set of skills. You could be working on managing someone’s emails or dealing with customer service. You could be producing content for their business, like press releases or product descriptions. The joy of being a VA is that you can pick who you work for; if you don’t feel like you would be a good fit for their intended role, you can say so and not lose out. It’s all about finding a good list of clients who you can work with on a regular basis and provide your expertise for. When done right, becoming a virtual assistant could be a great career path for anyone with IT fluency and an interest in working online.
You can easily find a lot of decent places to get started when it comes to making a living online as a VA. Start an account on various freelancing websites to gain some experience, and then start targeting local and national businesses. You never know who might need someone to handle their IT for them!
9. Search Engine Management
Another interesting way to make a bit of money is to look at using search engines. There are companies who will pay you to literally sit on the search engines. You simply need to look at a company known as InboxDollars. This is a search engine itself, and they will give you money to use their search engine as opposed to Google or Bing.
For every 4 ‘qualified’ searches, you make $0.15, and $0.05 when you use that search time more than 4 times in a week. So, it’s going to be something that you need to use for quite a few hours a day to try and make a bit of extra cash. For those nights where you are just killing an hour or two browsing the web though, you might as well make a bit of extra money on the side. However, we just recommend that you use it naturally; don’t try and play the system or use some form of automation to try and make a killing. It’s not going to make you a lot of money at first, but once you get into the swing of it you could make a decent little amount.
It’s a decent way to bring in a bit of extra money just as you browse around the internet. Be sure to read closer into what InboxDollars – or similar paying search engines – determine to be a “qualified lead”, though!
10. Sell Your Search Engine Usage
Another similar option to the above is to start using the Nielsen Computer and Mobile Panel. This has become a very popular choice for a lot of people; a way to make a living by letting someone watch what you do online. Privacy concerns to one side for a moment, this is a great way to boost your income and make sure you have a few more pennies sitting in the bank waiting for you.
It’s a great choice for making sure you can build a decent little income, and don’t worry; Nielsen has been around for the best part of a century. This is no fly-by-night data harvester who will use your information against you. Just remember that your internet browser usage is more or less always being watched when you sign-up to this platform, so keep that in mind as you look around the internet. For the agreed timeframe, everything you do is monitored.
That information is then fed back to other companies so that they can learn a bit more about what their target audience is up to. That’s why so many people choose to invest in this kind of income – it’s easy to do, and you just need to be willing to sell some privacy in exchange for cash.
Is that something you could consider? Then consider signing-up today.
11. Dealing With GPT Sites
A good way to make a bit of extra money in this industry is to start dealing with sites that are all about paying you. Known as ‘Get Paid To’ sites, these are sites that make it easy for you to pick up a few extra pennies for carrying out activities asked of you. Similar in some ways to the Swagbucks content we mentioned earlier, it’s a good way to start getting some more money in when you are a bit short on income this year.
You will get everything from cash and vouchers to rewards and various other nice little bonuses online just for signing up. Definitely a good way to make sure that you can turn your general shopping habits and the like into something a bit more productive. While it might not actively make you money in the direct sense, it will help you to spend less and to make sure that your expenditure is lessened, helping you to save and spend less.
12. Website Reviews
Another popular choice for a lot of people when it comes to the internet is to spend some time reviewing websites. Website reviewing is an easy way to make a few bucks in the long-term, and it should give you all the chances that you need to start making a small but simple passive income from the comfort of your home. Why do we recommend you do website reviews? Because it’s so easy!
Simply head on over to a site like UserTesting.com, and you can start immediately. You basically sit and review the site, looking at its features and spending around 20 minutes having a view around and seeing what you think of the site. This means that you could get around $10 for your work on UserTesting, with some other sites just like it around that you can try out as well.
So, if you were to commit to doing an average of 2-3 sites per hour, and you worked for 5-6 hours per day, you could be bringing in anything from $20-30 an hour, meaning that you could be well in excess of $100/day if you pushed it and did it with commitment and regularity. Not bad, eh?
13. What About Proofreading?
One of the best ways to make a decent sum of money on the side, if you are detail-oriented enough, is to start taking some proofreading projects on. many sites will give you the chance to make a few bucks by doing some proofreading. It’s not something that you can really do without being a decent reader and having a strong grasp on writing, though, so don’t go to be a proofreader if you aren’t passionate about reading in the first place.
You can get started online as a proofreader through many platforms. You might find some local firms that need a proofreader, or you might find that going freelance on a platform such as Fiverr might be a good choice for you. Really, though, the beauty of proofreading for a living is that you just need to google “freelance proofreader jobs” and you can find all manner of short-term, freelance, and long-term contract options waiting for you.
So long as you can tidy up a piece of work and make it sound nicer, you could make a nice living just by reading someone else’s work. Accuracy is vital in writing, which is why proofreaders get paid!
14. Transcribing Audio
If you are someone who would like to make a living by using their typing skills and their ears, now is the time. You can get into transcribing audio into text with relative ease, and you could make a good amount of money doing so. Groups such as Fiverr mentioned above make that easy, as do platforms such as Amazon Mechanical Turk. Using that platform, you could pick up some decent little side jobs that could bring you some money.
While at first, the money can feel like poor value for the time it takes, as you improve things will change. You will start to notice a big change in the way that you handle transcription, and you will start to get more lucrative offers as time goes on. Building up that experience in transcription is vital, too; it could help you to start your own transcription business in the future. Once you have a group of clients who have used and can vouch for the quality of your service, you should look to bring in more clients via other freelancing platforms.
Without a doubt, though, making a living using transcription is not something you should turn your nose up at. While it can seem a little abstract at first, it is definitely the kind of platform that you could use to make a healthy living. Unlike some other opportunities, too, it can genuinely lead to a long-term and lucrative career path if you take to it naturally.
15. Games Streaming
Are you someone who likes to play a lot of video games? Are you any good? Then you should look to set up a streaming account ASAP. Video games streaming can make you millions, but the majority don’t make anything like that. Even if you are just bringing in some pocket money when you are playing, though, it’s still extra money in your pocket. You cannot make any money playing video games just for personal entertainment, but with a mic, a streaming connection, and a bit of good humour and intellect, you could be making a few bucks in no time.
For the most part, your money will come from tips and thank yous from the people who pay attention to your channel. The big money comes from sponsorship and the like, but that only comes when you have thousands of subscribers and viewers. For now, though, just focus on building up a small audience that you know is here to watch you play – you can start to leverage their support and bring in a pretty decent little side income just by streaming your past-time.
You often sit and play games all night anyway – complete with your own commentary. Why not monetise that? Try it out. For a month, do 50% of your gaming time as on your own, and 50% of your gaming time as being streamed. If you are personable and people like you enough, though, you will bring in viewers and donations.
16. Playing Board Games
By the same token, what if you are more into Cluedo than Call of Duty? Then you should probably look to play board games instead. For example, you could turn to Swagbucks if you wanted to start making a few bucks online without having to really do anything. So long as you can apply games like Solitaire and Trivial Pursuit, Swagbucks gives you the chance to make a bit of extra money.
You basically play these games for a period of time with others, and you will be able to then redeem that money through various gift cards, cashback values, or e-wallet bonuses. While that might not be cold hard cash, it means that you could be saving money on making purchases from the places you get gift cards from. Or, you could sell on the gift card for the monetary value: many people do that through platforms such as eBay, and we recommend that you take a look at doing so. If you like to play board games and classic casino games, such as poker, or even classic board games, then you can make a nice little side income indirectly.
It’s not going to be for everyone, but if you love your board games then you should find it quite easy to use Swagbucks to make another few pennies. While it might be a bit off at first, you will soon begin to realise just how much value is attached to this – it’s an excellent way to boost your income in a sensible, professional manner.
17. Get Into Shape
On a totally different kind of way to make a living, have you ever considered making money by losing weight? Now you can. With the help of companies such as HealthyWage (and some other smaller companies), you can literally make money by losing weight!
This is a company that pays pounds for losing pounds, quite literally. While how much you can earn is going to be quite variable, if you are intent on losing some weight then why not it a bit easier to do so with the help of a financially driven incentive? If you want to start getting into shape, this makes sense. You could even use the money you get from losing weight to invest in more weight loss tools and dietary planning, leading to even more positive results as time goes on!
You basically place a monthly wager that you can lose X amount of weight in the time that has been given to you. If you manage to achieve success, you will be rewarded in the form of a big, fat cash prize. It’s a great way for you to bring in a bit of extra moolah on the side, and it would be very useful to help you push yourself to even greater things physically.
If you find the concept of losing weight quite a hard one to keep up with, then we definitely recommend that you put your money where your mouth is. Encourage yourself to get into shape and earn money by doing so!
It might be a good side-project after all of those hours gaming and gorging on food!
18. Rent Out Your Car
Another interesting way that we found for you to make a living is to rent your car out. For example, it’s often the case that those who work from home have a car, but don’t really need it. If you spend most of your working week in the house, then your car is sitting outside, depreciating by the day. Why not let someone else use your car, and make a few bucks from doing so?
Many people, for example, are turning to Getaround to do this. You basically put your car up for someone to share it, and it lets others who need short-term access to a ride to come and pick up your car. It’s a brilliant way to make sure that you can get an extremely easy way to make a living without actually having to go outside and do anything. With a 30-day free trial and with insurance coverage, if your car is just lying dormant you don’t really have anything to lose.
You make an hourly rate for your car being away and used by someone else. However, you need to pay a $20/month fee to Getaround, so make sure you keep that in mind. You also need to pay a $99 one-time fee to get their Connect™ system installed.
Can’t get access to Getaround due to geographic issues? Many smaller, local-based services like this exist. Just look for ride-sharing businesses where you are based, and you should find an alternative without issue!
19. Advertising With Your Car
An easy way to make a bit of extra money is to turn your car into an advertising board. While some people would be aghast at the idea of their car carrying brands, it’s not something you should turn your nose up at. You just need to go to a company known as Wrapify, and you can soon start bringing in all sorts of extra cash – if you happen to do a lot of driving and commuting, this is perfect for you.
You basically put your car up for rent, and companies can rent the space of your doors, roof etc. for advertising purposes. While you are likely to be horrified at your ‘baby’ being turned into an advertising board, the money that you get for doing so can be nice. Even if you don’t drive much at all, you could be making not far off $100/month. If you drive around a lot, though, you could be bringing in a hell of a lot more.
It just depends on how much you are willing to push the boat, really. Are you happy to try and make it easier for yourself to stand out? Then you can use this kind of system to make sure your car is very much the one in the street that people notice. While it might feel like selling out a bit, it does give you the chance to bring in a few more bucks every month simply by driving.
20. Charge Other People’s Cars
The electric era is well and truly upon us, and did you know that you could make a living out of becoming a freelance charge station? Many people with spare car parking slots are turning their home into a charge spot for cars, scooters, and various other platforms. This would be a good way to bring in some quick and easy cash, and most of the time you don’t even need to do much. Just be present, and make sure that the person who is using your platform is ready to pay when the time comes.
If you live in a city with a high uptake on electric vehicles, then we highly recommend that you look to get in on the action and start making a bit of extra money by charging up cars, scooters, and electric bikes. It’s a fine choice for making sure that you can release and build-up a residual income on a daily basis – you could even have people leave their car overnight while it charges.
While you have to get used to things like getting insurance to cover yourself and making sure you have a secure payment system, it’s a system that you could set up without any of the hassles many assume. In a high-traffic city, you might find that many people would rather get their charging done in a neighbourhood instead of at a garage or similar.
Let others use your electricity, and you could be well-compensated. Remember to set a decent price, too; if you are in demand, people need to pay for the supply!
21. Sell Your Parking Space
Keeping with the car theme for a moment, though, we want to take a look at one thing that we think is especially important: using your space. Turn to a company like JustPark, and you can soon rent out your parking space to ensure that people come back to you again and again. It’s a good way to make sure that if you live in a high traffic area but don’t own a car or use your parking space that you can make a bit of extra moolah from the spare space that you have.
You can let someone park in it when you are not there, and they can pay you a fee. Many people who work nearby where you live but cannot find a nearby parking space will look to use this kind of service. A good option is ParkLet alongside the aforementioned JustPark. Do that for long enough, and you could bring in a small side income by selling space.
22. Become A Commuter
Do you happen to do a lot of travelling in the morning on the way to work? Then did you know that you could be turning yourself into a minor taxi?
Simply take a look at tools such as Liftshare, and you will soon see just how easy this actually is. It allows you to make every trip to work in the morning a money earner, rather than a cost due to the cost of petrol. You can take up the seats with colleagues or even total strangers, and just set a fee. Since you pick them up at an easy spot and take them to/from work, you can make a nice little earner on the way there and back.
Do that for long enough, and you could start making a bit more money on the side. So long as you are even asking for a bit less than a daily train journey, most people will jump at the chance. The main problem you have is getting regular people to join you due to the limited nature of these opportunities. As this continues to grow as a transport option, though, expect more people to start enquiring about lifts!
23. What About Online Trading?
Another interesting choice that you might find a good way to earn a few more pennies is to look at online trading. It might not be the right choice for everyone, but all that you need to do is look at platforms such as eToro and you can get started in no time at all.
Okay, so you might not end up like Leonardo Di Caprio in The Wolf of Wall Street, standing with your arms outstretched in front of a braying audience. What you will do, though, is have the chance to mess around with stocks and have a chance to make some money. It’s a tough thing to get right, but something we heartily recommend everyone takes a moment to read into. With free practice accounts on eToro, and plenty of information to learn from, it’s definitely the kind of place you can get inspired by.
Online trading is a good place to learn how to run yourself into a profit, but you should always be mindful to watch what you are doing. Set a clear weekly budget that you must, must stick to. Make sure you stick to it at all times; don’t deviate from what you can afford to spend.
24. Affiliate Marketing
You’ve probably heard of this a good few times in the past, but affiliate marketing is a piece of cake for someone to get started in. To do it, you need a few things:
- A website, and a website hosting package from a site like Bluehost or HostGator.
- A passion for the market that you wish to work within.
- Access to an affiliate program, such as Amazon Associates.
If you have access to that, you can get involved in a fraction of the time that it might take you to build a brick and mortar business. You can either put in the time to learn how to build a website or put in the money to have someone build it for you. Then, it’s about learning how to create value-driven, impressive content that reviews the products you wish to promote and sell. It’s that simple!
Starting a website is that simple, but it will take you some time to build up traffic. You might choose to invest some money to make money and speed up the process or take the long-term approach and build it up organically. Your choice.
25. Website Flipping
Another good option that we have for you is to look into flipping websites. The aim here is to try and get ahead of the game. Using Google Trends (read on to find out more), you can spot what the next big thing in any given industry is: the next major Apple product, the next big release from Electronic Arts, that kind of thing.
Then, you look to go in and buy up the domain name for what you think they might wish to target. Or, you buy up good addresses that affiliate marketers like those above might want. Let’s say you wanted to try and buy a good domain name in the dog walking niche; you simply need to use domain sourcing tools like GoDaddy, find a URL that is not in use, buy it up, and then set up a basic site on the page. Tell people who to contact if they wish to buy the domain and wait for someone to make you an offer!
One thing we recommend that you do at this stage, however, is that you also look to make the affiliate marketing sites mentioned above. Then, once the site has a genuine income and a few people visiting and buying through it, you can list it on sites such as Flippa and Freemarket. This allows you to then list the site for a price you feel is fair and sell it on.
So long as it has a decent hit count, and a few sales, someone will consider buying it. Get a few of these set up at once, do them, up, improve them, and sell them on. It’s like buying up property to improve them before selling them on, but with websites – the potential is huge, and the outlay is often either your time to build the site, or a small amount of money to buy up the domain name. That’s all!
26. Selling Speciality Items
One of the best ways to make a killing online is to spend a bit of time looking around online for speciality goods that you can sell. This has become a common way to make a living for a lot of people. All it takes is having an eye for a topic you are passionate about, and knowledge about what is and is not valuable. For example, let’s take the classic: Pokémon Cards.
These trading cards go through periods of peaks and troughs, with classic old cards going for massive sums of money. Simply look out for people selling cards like this at markets, flea stores, charity shops etc. and buy them up.
It’s not even just the big Pokémon that some people want; some need a very specific card to complete their collection, and you might just have bought it for penny change. Speciality items are all about using your passion in a topic to sell them on places like eBay.
A good way to find out what is and is not in demand is to simply keep an eye out on things like Google Trends. Speaking of Google Trends….
27. Getting Ahead Of Trends
Another awesome way we have for you to make a few bucks this year is to start getting ahead of trends using Google Trends. If you have never used this tool, it’s about time that you changed that. Google Trends is probably one of the single biggest and best ways that you could start bringing in money today: all it takes is a desire to be proactive.
So, you could be using this money-making trick with just about any other method we have laid out in this guide. Why? Because you could start making money on anything as it becomes popular. Simply find the market that you wish to tap into and do a Google Trends search for keywords related to it. Let’s take a very simple example of the one we gave above – Pokémon cards.
Do a search for that exact term – “Pokémon cards”. Do you see on Google Trends an upsurge in people talking about it? If so, you might just be about to catch a Pokémon cards boom once again. As soon as you start seeing something spiking on Google Trends, you should get online and start blogging about that particular topic. Use it in whatever kind of marketing system you are using: whatever you are doing to make money, using Google Trends will help you to spot an opportunity ahead of the competition.
28. Write Some Short Stories
A good way to make a living if you are good with words is to write a short story and sell it on Amazon Kindle. Typically, the best thing here is to write a story that is fictional. Fictional content is easier to stand up: it’s just your idea, a story, something that you came up with. Going down the non-fiction route will often mean that you spend a bit too much time having to defend your credentials or show the world that you should be writing this book in the first place. It is generally not a very nice place to be.
If you wish to make a living with the pen rather than the sword, though, starting up a Kindle account is just what you need to do. Open up your Word Processor of choice, even Google Docs, and get writing. Come up with something original, and you can sell it on Kindle. So long as you price it at anything above $1.50, you get to keep a whopping 70% of any sales.
The key here is to write lots of short stories, building your reputation and touching on various topics and genres.
29. Write A Self-Help Solution
Another good way to use writing to make a living is to start looking at writing self-help solutions. For example, let’s say that you are someone who managed to stop smoking last year – congratulations. Now, why don’t you turn your story and your solutions to stopping smoking into a small but effective book guide?
Easy to write and built on your personal experience, this will give you all the ammo and assistance that you need to give people insight that they can learn from and knowledge that they can empower themselves with. One thing you will soon find that is that by doing this, you make it much easier for you to spend less and get more from your time. You will also get to make sure that everything you write is based on a subject and experience that you know about.
This will lead to you writing content that is useful to the reader, easy for them to get to grips with, and simple for breaking down complex and often challenging tasks. The end result is that you will often find it much easier to build up your portfolio of books, your reputation, and your profits. Again, sell them via Kindle and you should have no problem making a living as a writer.
30. Write Professional DIY Solutions
This is mainly for those who are, for example, in a building trade and want some side income. If you are a plumber, lets’ say, you could be writing a small book that covers all of the most common issues you handle. For example, you could be dealing with lots of easy jobs that take seconds to fix. Instead of keeping on doing them, you could write a small guide and sell it on your website and Kindle.
At the very least, the free information that you are giving away is going to help someone learn about what they are doing wrong. It will make them trust you and be more likely to get in touch about more serious plumbing work. Simply look for a cheap trade secret that you know a lot of your colleagues would happily charge someone for but could easily be sorted by the punter.
Creating a small book with value-minded content in there that helps people is only going to do you well when it comes to building and bolstering your reputation in time.
31. Write A Kid’s Story
One of the easiest ways to make a living as a writer, though, is to write a kid’s story and sell it on Kindle. The best way to do this is if you have kids of your own, or kids in the family. Read some of their books, and see what inspirations spark up in the back of your mind. What could you come up that a child would enjoy reading?
If you do that, you are much more likely to get a story that lets you tell a story that is going to be fun for kids but written for kids. Simply read a few kids’ books to see the level of language used and the scale of the plot, and then come up with a little life lesson. Most good kids’ stories have a lesson at the end, whether it’s a moral lesson or something a bit more useful.
Whatever it is that you wish to do, make sure that you get it on Kindle. Parents are always looking for a new cheap story to read to their kids, and your awesome little one might just be what their little child wants to read about!
32. Enter A Writing Competition
Another good way to make a living using your words is to enter yourself into a writing competition. Hard to win but often free to enter, they have the chance of a cash prize.
This is a good way to either build experience as a writer or to stop writing for free. It sounds good on a CV as a writer to say you have won X awards, so it’s a good way to start building up a rapport as a writer. You might need to think in unique parameters to reach the writing style needed for the competition, and you obviously won’t win most that you enter.
It’s a good way to have a chance to at least build up some writing rapport before you try and make it online as a freelancer. At the very least, you will have the chance to work your writing skills in new ways and really force yourself to become a different kind of writer, leading to a whole new kind of way of earning a living. It’s tough, but very much a fun way to make some extra money!
33. Become A Chat Bot
While it might not be what you would have expected, did you know that you could make a living being a chat bot? Companies will look to pay you money to be the face behind their chat service. Customer support, as you probably know, is a major part of being in business today. If you are not able to give someone the right kind of support, you will soon be replaced by a business who can. You can work for any business who is in need of someone to manage their chat platform for them.
Yes, a lot of sites will go with the generic chat bot. A lot of firms, though, aren’t too keen on doing that. We recommend that you look to fill in the gap. You can be the knowledgeable person behind the chat bot who pushes people in the right direction of the answer that they are looking for. If you do that, you are much more likely to be able to find a solution to the problems that they face.
Many ways to make a living as a chat bot exist, but most of them revolve in some way around being a customer support member. It’s an easy way to make a living; you just need to find someone to give you a chance.
34. Become An Online Boyfriend/Girlfriend
Before you start thinking we are being weird or creepy, we aren’t. Take a look at sites such as Invisible Boyfriend, and you can soon see why so many people might turn to using this kind of platform. You want to be able to make sure that you can do this first, though, as you are essentially going to be playing the role as someone’s other half in a bid to give them validity in life.
It’s a tough thing to do at first, but it’s got great earning potential if you don’t mind spending all day playing a role. Think of it as being an actor/actress; you are literally going to pretend to be with someone and listen to their day. It’s like a boyfriend/girlfriend experience, but you are literally just there to offer the chat and the emotional support.
Fair warning, though; this is not for those who are uncomfortable with their emotions. You can get some pretty interesting characters through platforms like this, but there’s the chance to essentially make a living helping someone feel happy every day.
35. Start Writing For Content Sites
The last writing option that we recommend you take a look at is to look at writing for content sites. Some platforms are better than others, but the best is probably to look at Crowdsource. I cannot recommend Crowdsource enough as a means of building up belief and skill as a writer. For you, it should be the ideal way to start gaining experience and becoming far more in-tune with who you are as a writer. It should, in time, make sure that you feel far more confident about your writing style whilst also making sure you can get a few pennies while you go.
However, one thing to note here is that unless you can handle large volume writing tasks in a few hours, you will struggle to make the money you want to when using a content site. If you are looking to make every word that you write valuable, use this as your launch platform and then seek out new writing opportunities.
It really is not very likely that you can make the size of income that you need if you want to just keep writing content. For a start, though, it’s tremendous.
36. Make Some Music For An Audio Library
Now moving on to audio for a little while. Are you someone who is good with their audio, or at least has a good idea of what they are doing? Then you should start creating audio library content. This is the kind of set and forget stuff that can be licensed by companies as and when needed, so something you made in an afternoon could be bringing you in a few bucks every day for the rest of your life.
It’s all about making sure that you are able to produce a high standard for a certain kind of niche or theme. One thing that we recommend is that you look to find your niche and the kind of music that you do well at. For example, are you good at making the kind of music that plays on the other end of a phone while an angry customer waits for the customer service team to let them down? You could actively make money if you pushed this enough.
We recommend that you at least take a look. It can often mean a lot of work for little return, but it’s a set-and-forget income stream.
37. Teach Music Students Online
A simple way to use your ability to play a musical instrument is to provide online tuition. You can do this through your own service, through various freelancing sites, or through various music tuition sites. Most instruments and musical styles have their own sites out there, so just search for the instrument that you tend to enjoy using the most.
If you are good with an instrument, don’t mind talking to someone on webcam/video chat, and don’t have a problem taking it slow as they try to follow instructions, musical tuition is a great way to bring in a bit of extra money. One thing that we recommend that you do, though, is that you spend a bit more time working out what kind of content you would like to teach.
For example, you could be teaching people the basics – this is often the most lucrative but also the most time consuming. Or, you could turn to stuff like showing people how to play their favourite song on request.
You could even do this offline, too; you just need to source local students who need help with their musical instruments and their learning!
38. Teach Music Theory
Are you good at the theory side of music? Then, as far as most people in the music industry are concerned, you are gold dust for a student. Students can often play to their heart’s content, but many students put far more time into practical music than theoretical music. As such, if you have the ability to understand music theory and put across easily, you will find that starting a career as a musical tutor is one of the best choices that you could make.
Choosing to do this is going to make sure that you can spend more time really showing people what they need to learn, ensuring that everything they pick up is going to feel like a worthwhile lesson that leaves them with something valuable. The skill with music tuition when teaching theory is being able to break down complex terms and ideas into basic, simple concepts. When you get into the habit of doing that, it soon becomes much easier for you to give people the information that they need, when they need it.
If you think that you could handle the challenge of teaching musical theory, then you should absolutely explore doing so.
39. Write Songs
While it might not be for everyone, you might have a knack for writing lyrics. Some of us can barely sing or put together a good musical bar, but we can write good lyrics. If you fall into that kind of thinking, then you could definitely look to make a living writing music for other musicians. By doing this, you basically ask them to give you music, and you fill in the lyrics depending on the kind of artist they are.
For a lot of musicians, this is their biggest failing. Come up with lyrics that are more than just witty rhymes is as hard as it seems and sounds. That is why, if you get good at it, musicians will have no problem at all in paying you good money to show them how to create banging music.
If you are serious about building a long-term musical career for yourself, then you should definitely be looking to try out writing some songs. Make no mistake; writing songs is one of the best ways for you to change and improve your musical career. You can even earn performance royalties if you manage the contracts in this way!
40. Become A Scout
Let’s look at something else outside of music, though – let’s look at sport. We touched on the power of matched betting earlier. Now, we want to look at something else: becoming a scout. Whether you love basketball, hockey, soccer, boxing, whatever, you can be a scout. Simply search what the national requirements are for you to be a scout in your chosen sport, and you can do so.
Signing up to be a scout is one of the best decisions that you could ever make. Why? Because if you have an eye for a player, clubs will be more than happy to pay you for your eyes and your knowledge. The best way to start is to scout young players, like youth level, school-age talent. Then, take them to local clubs, get them some game time, and hope they move up the ranks.
Your entire job is about watching teams, recommending players, and then hoping that they make the grade. Once you get your first player who you scouted who manages to move up the ranks of a senior club, though, other clubs will want to see what you have to offer. It’s challenging, skill-specific, and demanding. It is, though, a lucrative and rewarding job.
41. Become An Agent
The other idea we have in mind for you is to become an agent. Just like above, the aim is to try and find out what your national needs are. Some countries have strict requirements for becoming a sports agent; others have next to none. All it takes is one player on your contacts lists to get a move, though, and you could be making a huge sum of money in no time at all.
The secret to being a good agent isn’t to just moving players on, though – it’s to help them find the right career move. Don’t just look at making money today, think about tomorrow. If you move a player on, for example, are they going to benefit from moving to where you are trying to get them?
It might make you both more money today, but does it help you both in a few year’s time?
Agents build businesses and their reputation simply by being good at what they do and looking out for their clients. Keep their best interests at heart, and progress really is not so far around the corner for you as an agent.
42. Become A Photo Editor
Now let’s have a look at your digital capabilities. Are you good with a camera? Then why not take a look at becoming a photo editor? You could start your own website or run your own accounts and pages through various freelance pages such as Fiverr.
This would give you the chance to edit photos for a living and give you a chance to edit and clean up photos. For example, getting rid of the dreaded ‘red eye’ in a photo is a skill that you could be paid for. Or, you could be used to help mater and improve imagery and help people to make their content look even better.
It’s often just a case of brushing up photos and making some small but significant changes to make them look a bit better. It’s a fun way to make a living, and the challenge often stems from finding clients. That is why many people choose to make a living by editing photos as a freelancer, and then build up a long-term company website as they do this on the side for a while.
You can choose what suits you best, but photo editing is a fun, easy to enjoy job.
43. Take Stock Photos
Another fun way to make money as a photographer is to start using your ability to take good stock photos. You then simply need to turn to companies such as Dreamstime and even Flickr and get your photos up there to be used for licensing.
It’s a fun and easy way for you to make a living, and one of the best ways to make sure that you can pick up a bit more money without having to keep producing new work. Stock photos are basically photos that could be used for any context. So, for example, someone sitting at a desk looking stressed could be used for just about any workplace article.
It can be anything; the aim is to try and find stock photos and make them a bit more creative. For example, you could get into relationship-themed stock imagery. You could make them funny; you could make them tongue-in-cheek, or you could make them overly seriously. The options are so open; the challenge comes from getting good shots, editing them, and then getting them on sites such as Dreamstime to make sure you can bring in some cash on the side.
44. Create Logos For A Living
Are you someone with an eye for invention? Then you should look to create logos for a living. You can do this through most freelance sites. Or you could target businesses, create a mock-up logo for them, and send it over to them. If you like it, you can finish it off and license it to them for a fee. The choice is yours. All you need is an eye for mixing in a logo with the brand.
A company logo is all about telling people what the business offers, and what the solutions they can provide are. From typography to imagery through to the colour scheme, you will need to be good at picking out a design that feels a natural fit for the business. You could make a good bit of money from doing this. You could also look to start posting up stock logos for companies, with template text that can then be edited and licensed out to the company.
This allows you to build creative, exciting logos in a fraction of the time that you would normally have assumed. It’s a great way to make a living and to create content that you can sell and rent out to companies on a long-term basis.
45. Get Into Product Imagery
A fine way to make a living if you are good with a camera and a photo editor is to start getting into product imagery. Product imagery is a fine way to make a living, as lots of people find that it does a good job of gaining regular business. If you help someone to sell one product, the smart money says they will come back to you again.
The secret is to start targeting companies that have poor images of their product. For example, lots of people run small dropshipping stores that manage to sell items sold from China. They often use the same stock imagery as their competition. Simply ask them to send you one of the items, and you can make it look far more professional – and unique – than the content their competition are pushing.
This is a fine way to bolster your income, and it allows you to get a lot of repeat business. A few clients with regularly updated product selections and you could be making a killing in this industry in no time at all!
It takes an eye for lighting and for professional appeal in relation to their target audience. If you have that, though, you can easily make a good living using product photography.
46. Use Your Spare Space
Are you someone who has moved into a home that might be a touch too big for you? Then you could sell some of that free space. You can rent out your spare space on many sites, even just by going to local businesses and the like. You could even advertise it by going to places like classified ads and letting locals and local businesses know that you could be happy to let them take up some of that spare space in a room or a garage.
You need to get insurance to ensure that the stuff is never going to become damaged, and you will have to keep security standards high. If you do that, though, you could easily start making a bit more money from your home just by renting out the spare space that you have. It’s a good way to make a level income and to at the very least make your monthly living costs a bit easier to keep up with.
It will make sure that you can easily use the space for both long-term and short-term storage for everyone from people moving to a new house to cash-smart businesses looking for nearby storage.
47. Sell Your Space As A Workshop
A good way to use that spare space, as well, is to rent it out as a workshop. Look for local people who seem to be working in cramped areas and offer them a larger workspace in the form of your garage. If you are using the space for nothing else other than storage, you could turn it into a rental joint for a local business.
From a local carpenter to someone who does a lot of model painting, you could have just about anyone using your garage as a place to work. It’s a good idea and one that is almost certainly going to result in more people turning up at your home to try and use the space that you have. It’s also going to help you to make some good business contacts in the local area.
Over time, you can start to make the most of building up high-quality workshop spaces for locals to work in. If you are paying for the privilege of all that space but you are not using it, then renting out the space will definitely help to keep things cheaper and give you an extra income source.
48. Get Into Appliance Repair
One of the easiest ways to use your own living space though is to start repairing appliances. Simply post an ad on local classified ads and anywhere else local, such as local social media pages, and make some space to get fixing.
Sure, it might mean a few late-night efforts to try and fix the appliance, but you can make good money fixing things. The key is to offer a service that charges nothing if you cannot solve the issue, and also a service that is specific about what it can and cannot fix. Don’t give people false hope; let them know that you can do the job on X and Y products, but will be happy to try out Z.
The aim is to use places like YouTube to learn how to fix the problem. It will mean a lot of back and forth, but if you are good with your hands and don’t mind following instructions then you could easily make a lot of money by fixing appliances.
All you need is that very same workspace that we were recommending that you rent out just a moment ago!
So, what will you choose to do as your side hustle?