3 Ways to Make Money Online in Your Free Time
We’re going to come right out and say it: making money online is not easy. All of the weird ads you see at the bottom of news websites (‘make $4,123 in your sleep!’ ring any bells?) are complete scams. And if you think you can match a ‘normal’ salary in just a couple of weeks, we’re here to inject a little truth in your fantasy world.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way, we can start talking real business. Making money online is possible, it’s not a pipe dream. But it’ll take some hard graft. Instead of giving you short and useless advice, we’re going to focus on our top three. They tick the following boxes: it’s easy to get started, all you need is a couple of hours a week to make it work (granted, the more you put in, the more you’ll earn!), and it’s also possible to grow over time and make some real cash. Let’s get started.
Write, Write, Write
If you’ve ever put pen to paper and churned out an essay while at school, you’ll be able to make a bit of money writing online. You don’t need to be the next Hemingway or Shakespeare, nor does your writing need to match what you read on high brow publications such as the New Yorker or the Guardian.
We’re talking cheap and cheerful online articles. The kind you see on sites like Buzzfeed, Forbes, or the Huffington Post. You don’t think these articles win awards on a regular basis, do you?
You can head over to Textbroker or Fiverr to find businesses looking for writers. On Fiverr, for example, you can post your writing gig. This is basically your storefront, where you offer your business to others. All you need to do is create a somewhat interesting gig (native speakers have a huge advantage here) and the orders will start coming in.
Now, do be aware that you’ll be earning peanuts to start with. You’ll need to get a couple of good reviews and a chance to spruce up your initial writing samples (trust us, it’s going to take a little while unless you’re particularly talented). Over time, and we’re talking a couple of months tops, it’ll be super easy to write 500-word articles for $15-20 a pop. Not bad for a side hustle.
Matched Betting and Casino Bonuses
Before you get the pitchforks out and tell us gambling is dangerous and not worth doing, hear the spiel out first. We agree that gambling isn’t a solid money making choice. Sure, playing for fun with the money you can afford to lose is fine. But relying on it to make money? That gets a ‘NO!’ in our book.
But we’re not talking about gambling. Matched betting and casino bonus systems, for example, takes advantage of the free bets you get when signing up to new casinos.
For example, real money gambling websites are now pushing mobile games, which means a range of freebies that can lead to serious money if you know what you’re doing. The same goes for sports betting.
This is how it works (this is just an example): the casino will give you a free $100 to play with, as long as you put down your own $100 deposit. You place your $100 on the Houston Rockets to win, for example. You then place a ‘lay bet’ on the Rockets not to win. The money will even out, roughly (giving you back almost your entire initial $100 deposit). You then do the same with the bonus money, ensuring you make a profit no matter the outcome.
Simple, right? The problem with this system is that people love to gamble. They’ll get overexcited or they won’t be happy with the relatively small winnings this kind of betting generates. But imagine doing this long-term and with every single gambling website out there. It’s a nice little bonus to your pay-slip, and in most countries, it’s entirely tax-free.
Take Stock Photos
If you’re an amateur photographer (and let’s face it, plenty of us consider ourselves just that these days), then stock photos can be a real money spinner. Think about it: where do you think sites like Getty Images and Shutterstock get their photos? They don’t pay photographers up-front, we’ll tell you that much.
Putting it together? Exactly. They rely on people like us to add high-quality images to their websites. If someone buys them, you both get a cut. It’s a sweet business model (mainly for them, but you can still make some decent money!)
The cool thing about this strategy is the royalty system it employs. Take one incredible photo and you could be making money for months, if not years. Rinse and repeat and you can build up a real business here.
It’s easy to make some money right from the get-go. Serious cash? It’ll take you a little longer. Our advice is to go for the long game. Slow and steady wins the race. All that stuff. Be patient and this stuff simply works, period.