I've agonized for a whole 10 minutes over what my second post to this blog was going to be about and after much deliberation decided to just break down the many ways I've found to make honest money online.
Searching the web for an honest way to make money is like trying to find a girl you'd want to marry at a strip club. It can happen but the odds are stacked heavily against you. It seems that most of the websites are looking to cash in and get you to pay them to tell you how to make money online. Finding a good, honest source of online income is possible but it's not an easy task.
The first, and probably easiest, method of making money online is getting paid to fill out surveys and special offers. There are quite a few sites that will pay you to do things like fill out questionnaires and view advertising from sponsors. One such site is Cashcrate.com. Be forewarned that most of the surveys and offers only pay small amounts of money and it will take a while to build up a respectable amount of cash. It is doubtful that you'll be able to quit your day job and make enough money to live comfortably, however it can be a good source of extra spending money.
There is a lot more money to be made via the next source of honest wealth online. There are quite a few companies that are willing to pay you to write or ghostwrite articles. If you are a good writer and can write about any topic, there is halfway decent money to be made. Elance.com is a popular site where online writing jobs can be sourced. There are also sites that will pay bloggers to review products or sites on their blog.
If you aren't a good writer but are able to create good graphic designs or take pictures, you can sell them online as well. 99designs.com is a source that I've used to sell graphic designs. Companies post projects to the site and you compete to create the winning project. If your project is chosen, the money can be good. Stock photos can be sold at Shutterpoint or any one of a number of similar sites.
The next method is going to take a lot more work but the upside is that the potential to make money is limitless. It all hinges on how hard you are willing to work to find your niche and promote it. Affiliate marketing is one of the best ways to make good money on the Internet. There are literally thousands of sites out there that are willing to pay you to promote their product. You can do this promotion however you'd like but many of the top paying programs require that you have your own website. You can purchase a domain name and get the site hosted for a year for under a hundred dollars if you shop around. Many of the biggest hosting companies also have templates or even wizards through which you can easily build a site.
After the site is built, choose an affiliate program- or two or ten-and sign up. Most of these programs will give you links and banner ads to add to your site. When visitors to your site make purchases via these ads, you receive a portion of the profits. Placing the ads on your site is only half the battle. After you place the ads, you have to generate traffic to your site. This can be done through a combination of search engine optimization, linking and social networking.
If selling other people's products doesn't really excite you, you can sell your own products. Quite a few artisans are making a living on E-bay and Etsy and many more are making a little extra spending money by selling arts and crafts. If the thought of making bead earrings makes you want to puke, search your garage and closets for used items that you no longer want and sell them on E-bay. Graduate from selling your own items to helping other people sell theirs. Soon you'll be scouring garage sales and thrift stores for forgotten treasures that you can turn around and sell for a profit.
As you can see, there aren't really any sure-fire easy ways to make a lot of money online. If you're willing to work hard and are one of the rare people that can stay motivated without a boss hanging over your shoulder, there is some money to be made. Don't fall for the get rich quick schemes out there. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is.
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