5 Foolproof Ways To Make Money Online

Do you have a family vacation you want to go on? An addiction to beautiful shoes? A bunch of debt you want to pay off?

Perhaps you just got laid off or, like many of my friends, moved to a foreign country where you are not permitted to work without a visa.

Or, do you just want a little cushion or an emergency fund for hard times? Sure, you can wait for the income tax refund that you might or might not get, but when money’s tight you don’t want to wait!

If any of these scenarios sound like you, you should be a freelancer.

While my experience has primarily been with freelance writing jobs, you can do just about anything online from making phone calls for people to being someone’s personal assistant to agreeing to wear a big hotdog outfit and jump on a trampoline (you think I’m joking – and no that was not me.)

But, before you get all pumped up and start dreaming of ways that you can spend the extra cash, you should know a few things.

  1. Finding online jobs is a job in itself.
  2. You might not get paid what you think are worth.
  3. If you want to be successful, you have to work extremely hard.

Now that I’ve said that, here’s my take on it:

Over one year ago, my only “freelance” gig was helping family and friends edit their papers, formal letters, and personal statements for graduate school. Time and time again, people told me I should charge for my services, but I just did it to be nice.

Then, when I moved to the Caribbean island of Grenada, I got stir crazy. I wasn’t working for the first time in my life, and I had just finished a rigorous masters degree program. I actually got a little down, because I felt like I had just done two years of intensive studying, only to do nothing with it.

So, I started to research online writing jobs. And, I got my first one making $10/post (I do a little better than that now!)

As the months went by, I continued to look for jobs. At least once a day I applied to something. Many of them did not respond. Many of them lowballed me. But, I kept on persisting.

I don’t want to list the exact amount I make each month doing this, but I can say that it is in the thousands. And it started at zero only one year ago.

I should also note that I don’t have any talents that are particularly better than anyone else’s. I’m just a gal that likes to write.

However, what I believe has always set me apart is that I have an intense work ethic, and I’m a self-starter. I can literally force myself to sit for hours and do this. I think my family thinks I’m crazy. But, I’m just crazy satisfied, because for the first time in my life, I am really enjoying what I am doing.

So, now that I’ve rambled on and on, here are the 5 main ways that I get freelance jobs:

  1. I look on problogger every day. These are mostly writing jobs, but occasionally they have social media marketing jobs (which you can do with a little know how and an understanding of facebook, twitter, and pinterest.) The important thing is that if I see a job I want, I apply the exact same day, and I try to make sure my resume and job qualifications match up perfectly. This is a very popular job board, and you have to be quick.
  2. Criagslist is king. One of my biggest tips/secrets is that I look at craigslist jobs in major cities every day. I found one of my highest paying clients by applying to a job I found on the New York City writing jobs section of Craigslist. Be wary of sending too much personal information. Just send an introduction and qualifications.
  3. I was lucky to get in on Fiverr in its early stages. This is a website where people pay you to do things for 5 bucks. It can really be anything. The hurdle you have to leap over is getting your first gig and first positive review. Then, you immediately jump up in the rankings. This one takes time, but it surprises me each month with the profits. In fact, I opened up a separate high yield savings account just to put Fiverr profits in, and I am using it to by a new macbook computer in the beginning of August.
  4. Another tactic I use that’s not typically discussed is that if I see a blogger that is similar to me, I check out who they are writing for. Often I will take it a step further and ask for their contact’s e-mail address. (You can see who I write for on my Hire Me tab, for example.) This is key because if you just e-mail a big website at random to ask for a job, it might get lost. You are looking for the specific e-mail address of the content manager, assistant editor, or social media manager. They are the ones who get you hired. And, their e-mail addresses aren’t often out in the open.
  5. Sign up with a site like Odesk or Freelancer. While I do not work with these sites myself, many, many freelancers that I know personally have gotten amazing amounts of work from these sites. One SEO company that I work with actually got hired personally to do SEO for the entire Freelancer.com site, so they even use their own freelancers to get things accomplished!

Bonus Tips: You are not the only one who is trying to make money online. You might get some work by passively applying for jobs, but you will not be able to quit your day job. The only way you can do that is with a go getter attitude and constant persistence. Network on twitter. Get to know a lot of people who do the same type of freelance work that you do. Connect frequently. Apply every day. Get better. Get recommendations. Present yourself as a professional. And when you get the job, do a victory dance!

5 Foolproof Ways To Make Money Online


Have any questions or tips I did not cover? Just leave them in the comment section below!  The more, the merrier. Let’s have that freelancer love spreading around!

About Catherine Alford

Catherine Alford aka "Cat" is a personal finance freelance writer who currently lives in the Caribbean with her husband and spoiled pup, Julep. To learn more about her writing services, please visit her Hire Me page or e-mail her at Cat[at]BudgetBlonde[dot]com. Follow her on Google + to get all the latest updates.

Lovely comments:

  1. Natalie says:

    You have such great tips and I love how resourceful you are! Thanks for sharing!

  2. I think you’re the first person I meet that makes money in this way…. something my husband and I have been dying to try but were too afraid or couldn’t find reliable information. I know Natalie personally and if you’re anything like her I definitely know that this is information we can trust. I guess, I’ll let you know how it goes in a year!

  3. Great ideas! I just started using Fiverr a few days ago and just reviewed it on my blog. I was impressed with how quickly I landed an order.

    I just stumbled upon your blog but I am really enjoying what I see!

  4. Harry @ PF Pro says:

    Good tips, the only problem with internet freelancing is you are literally competing against an entire world! I think the one advantage we have is being native english speakers. I work with a lot of really smart people and none of them can write worth a damn! I wasn’t that great of a writer until I started reading and writing a ton though.

    The more manual tasks like VA’ing and some of the fiverr gigs will be more advantageous to foreign entrepreneurs while writing unique and quality content based articles will be more suitable for us.

  5. MaloRee says:

    I love your site, and crazy as it is I also live in GRENADA!! I’m actually over there for school. I really just wanted to say hi and thanks for all of your great tips!

  6. This is a great post! I am new to your blog, having come here from a SmartyPig Facebook link. I love SP too and I love this blog already! Thanks for the great advice!

  7. Hi Cat! I just discovered your site and I’m so excited over your content and advice. I will enjoy reading all your articles and hope to get myself on the path of organization and saving $$. Enjoy your time in the Caribbean. Your life may continually change for the next few years so just roll with it! After I married, I never thought I would be “downsizing my wants” and only focusing on the “real needs” of life. Thank you for sharing so much and best of luck to you and your husband.

  8. This is an extraordinary post! I am new to your website, having come here from a Smarty Pig Facebook join. I cherish SP too and I cherish this website as of recently! Much obliged concerning the incredible guidance!

  9. Yes, safety is key when inquiring about jobs online. Give as little personal information out about yourself as possible while still describing your qualifications for the job.

  10. Hey Cat! I just stumbled upon your blog and it’s super helpful! I know this post is older, but I just wanted to say thanks for the useful information.
    I’ve been freelancing for a few years and I’ve only found work through Elance and referral. I’m excited to scope out Problogger and Craigslist.

    Best,
    Megan

  11. Thanks Cat for the practical information! I’m new to blogging and have gotten discouraged due to slow growth but you’re ‘can do’ spirit inspired me to double my efforts and stick with it. I also appreciate the Problogger information! Thanks again, Kate

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