12 Low Budget Ways to Make Money Online
With the internet taking off like wild forest fire, more and more ways to make money online are coming up all the time. Chances are, you've come across several already. The problem is that many of these methods usually cost money in some form or other and if you are just starting out, you may not have the budget for it. Alternatively, you may just be looking for a small side income and are only interested on a flexible opportunity that can help you earn that extra cash without having to start something that will require your committed attention. Well, here are 12 low-budget (read: free or almost free) ways you can earn those extra dollars.
1. Writing Reviews on Your Blog
If you already own a blog, this is easy. If not, you can choose to sign up for a free blog, such as Blogger, Wordpress, Blogdrive, just to name a few. A search on google will help you find more sites that host free blogs. Alternatively, if blogging is something you are serious about, think about hosting your own blog. Wordpress offers a great program that allows you to host your own blog and there are many hosting companies that have a one click installation that will help you get up and running in no time.
Once you have your own blog, simply sign up for a free blogger/publisher account at any of the following sites to be eligible to write reviews or paid posts on your blog. You will need to wait for your blog to be approved before you can blog reviews. Each site has different criteria that you need to meet in order to be eligible. For instance, you may need a blog that has been around for a certain number of months with a minimum number of posts before you can blog for them. They may also have restrictions such as the number of paid blog posts you can accept or the maximum number of paid blog posts your blog is allowed to have, etc. Each site has different rules and regulations so make sure you read through them carefully when you sign up.
Agloco is free to join. After joining, you are required to download a view bar. Depending on your usage of the view bar, you will be paid money or shares.
3. Selling text links on your website
If you have a website or a blog, you can submit it to a text-link broker that will sell text-links to advertisers on your behalf. You'll get paid for any text-links that are hosted on your website. Words will be taken from your blog posts and converted to text-links so you don't have to write anything other than your usual blog posts.
4. Join a blogging/writing network
If you don't have your own blog, you can write for blogging/writing networks that pay you through a profit sharing system. These sites usually monetise their sites with ad agencies like Adsense and you will generate an income based on the traffic that visit the articles you write or something to that effect. One of the advantages for writing on these sites is that they have many writers who are all constantly submitting new articles. The search engines love websites that are constantly being updated so they get good rankings and lots of traffic. Lots of traffic means more click throughs which generate revenue for the website and you.
- Blogger Party
- Weblogs Inc
5. Sell Advertising Spaces on Your Website
If you have a website or blog with lots of traffic or the topic of your site is very specific, you may have advertisers who are interested to advertise on your site. For instance if you have a blog about scrapbooking, you may have a scrapbooking company who might want to place a banner or a text-link on your website and they may even ask you to write a review on their products.
6. Join an Affiliate Marketing Program
Again, if you have a website with good traffic, you can market related affiliate products on your site. If your visitors click through and purchase those products, you will receive a commission for the sale of those products. There are many affiliate programs available on the internet. Some companies offer affiliate programs directly from their website, while others may advertise their affiliate program on an affiliate marketing network.
7. Join an MLM Company that Offers a Free Trial Period
Some MLM companies offer a free trial period so you can work to generate an income before you have to spend any money.
9. Freelance Work
If you search online, you can find some agencies that offer freelance work opportunities. One such agency is Academia Research. In order to become an approved writer, you will need to submit a CV and writing samples of your work. You are then given a test assignment to complete. If your test assignment is approved, you will be able to apply for writing assignments which usually pay anywhere between $6-10 per page (with 250 words on each page). The number of pages per assignment starts from two pages upwards. Another company is Get A Freelancer.
10. Contextual Ads
If you have a blog or website, you can place contextual ads on them. Contextual ads are basically clever ads that search the content of your webpages and displays ads that are relevant to your content. For instance, if you write a blog post about early childhood development, your contextual ads might display educational DVDs and books for toddlers. A few sites that offer contextual ad codes are listed below:
- Kontera (they have a requirement of accepting only websites that have a minimum of 50,000 page views, however, if you visit John Chow's Blog and sign up for Kontera via his sign up link, you can get your site accepted as long as they find your content suitable because John has a special arrangement with Kontera)
- Google Adsense
8. Sell Products on eBay
I think anybody who has been online will have heard of eBay. Most users have traded on eBay at some stage, and some have even sold products on eBay - perhaps some old books or miscellaneous items around the house you no longer needed or wanted? But did you know you could run a business eBay? eBay has a learning center that teaches you how to sell products and increase your sales, but there are plenty of courses available that provide detailed instructions on how to become an eBaby powerseller.
11. Shopping Widgets
Again, if your website or blog has good traffic, you can try placing a shopping widget on your site and get paid whenever one of your visitors clicks on an ad displayed on your widget. Unlike contextual ads, these aren't based on your website content, however it makes better sense to your site if you choose categories that are related to your website content in some way. My only gripe about these widgets is that they slow down the loading time for your website.
12. Paid Blogger
You can also get a job as a blogger. With the increasing popularity of blogs, more and more companies are adding blogs to their websites. The only problem with a blog is that it needs to be mantained and updated on a regular basis, so these companies are also hiring freelance writers to produce the content on their blogs. You can look for blogging jobs at:
- Problogger Job Board
- Indeed (just search for blogging jobs)
These are all pretty effective ways to make money without requiring a big budget, however, as with most other jobs and business opportunities, they are only effective if you really apply yourself to them. Signing up for these opportunities and doing nothing will not make you any money - you'll just waste your time and get frustrated. If making money online is really your goal, I hope you find this list useful. Good luck!