As my journey progresses, I’m always looking for ways to make money online, especially in 2021.
The problem is, all the top results on Google are full of clickbait and the ideas are mostly stupid.
So while I don’t have the highest number, all my recommendations are real ways to make money online in 2021.
I’ve filtered out all the stupid stuff so you’re not wasting your time.
What do You Need to Make Money Online
Some of these ideas require specialized knowledge but many do not.
If there is knowledge or a skill you need to use the strategy, go out an learn it.
We live in an age of information… free information.
You can spend hours online looking for the next big and easy thing, or…
You can read this post, pick a legitimate way to make money online (one that makes sense to you), and then take massive action.
You’ve got to do the work.
You have to produce instead of just consume.
You have to be willing to fail and then try again.
Nothing worth doing is ever easy so stop making excuses, pick on of these online money making strategies, and go “get ‘r done”.
If you prefer watching over reading, I’ve put together a video on the topic.
And for those of you (like me) who prefer text and more details, here you go…
Best Ways to Make Money Online
(in no particular order)
#1) Teach English Online
When I was living in China as a young man I learned very quickly that just being a native English speaker is a marketable skill.
I was going to the Beijing Language and Culture University and the Asian students on our campus would pay $20 dollars and hour for “tutoring” in English.
Most the students had been studying English their entire lives and were fluent, but they wanted to learn to sound more natural.
So “tutoring” was really just sitting down on a bench somewhere and talking to them for an hour and then they would pay up.
Considering I could eat a full course meal for about $1.78, that $20 went a long way.
Though you may not live in China, most the sites you can make money online teaching English pay about $20-24 hr.
That’s still a good little side hustle.
It’s not quit your job money, but it’ll help pad the wallet.
Work 10 hours a week and you’ll be earning an extra $800 per month.
For more information on a plethora of options, this article has a pretty good list.
If you want to teach online full time, there are some extra requirements but that’s also a possibility.
You can start with checking out EF’s Program.
#2) Sell Your Stuff On Craigslist or Facebook Market
If you’re on this page, you may have already tried this, but if not it’s probably the fastest way to make some quick cash online.
I guess it isn’t technically a way to make money online, but you are using your computer or phone to bring cash to your house.
I have found over past few years that if you have an item that’s not overpriced, Facebook Market usually sells faster than Craigslist (at least in my area).
In fact, when we moved into our new home I sold a bunch of stuff to get rid of it.
I stopped using Craigslist altogether because Facebook Market was working so well.
But if you really need to get some cash, it doesn’t hurt to post in both to try to sell an item faster.
#3) Use Affiliate Marketing to Make Money Online
Unless you have a sizable email list or customer base already, this will take some time to get going.
But the rewards are exceptional.
This strategy can actually replace your income eventually.
What is Affiliate Marketing?
Basically, affiliate marketing is when you get approved by a company to be a seller of their product.
It can be a physical product, a digital product, or an online service based product (like clickfunnels, webhosting, etc.)
Once you are approved as a vendor for the product, you have access to specific links that identify you online as a seller.
You drive traffic to those links and make money anytime somebody buys a product through that link.
For example, I am an Amazon affiliate.
Anytime I’m discussing an Amazon product or make a recommendation from Amazon, I link out to that product on Amazon through my affiliate link.
If somebody buys from that link, I get a kickback.
It’s that simple.
Beginner Tips for Affiliate Marketing
Amazon is the biggest, but unless you’re making lots of sales of high priced items, you may not make very much.
There is a learning curve and you’ll need to be careful to promote products you believe in.
Also, keep in mind that at any time the companies can change their revenue sharing model or do away with it completely.
For awhile I was linking out to some cool online tools.
These paid 40% of sales and paid every month because it was a subscription model.
But over time they all did away with their affiliate program and these were very reputable companies.
Looking back, I think they planned to screw over affiliates to begin with.
They just wanted to use us for backlinks and to get new accounts.
Cutting us out of the deal was the plan from the start.
So be very careful of that and don’t get so dependent on your affiliate income that you need it to survive.
I am an affiliate for only a handful of companies now.
Companies that I trust (one of those being Amazon) and I’m wary of taking on more.
You’ll also need a way to drive traffic to the link.
If it’s an expensive product with high commissions you may be able to learn and use online marketing, but then you have to make sure you’re making more than you’re spending on ads.
The best way to get started with this once you find some products to promote is to YouTube videos like my video below.
I use this video as an example because it was a product I got from Amazon for myself.
But since it was a $70 or $80 product, it made a perfect option as an affiliate video.
If anybody sees that video and goes to Amazon to get the product, I will earn a small commission.
It won’t be much, maybe 3-5% of the sales price.
But get a bunch of affiliate links out there and make 50, 100, or 1,000 sales a month and you’re earning some pretty good affiliate income.
That doesn’t even count the money you can make from ads on YouTube but I’ll cover that strategy later.
#4) Create an Online Course
Affiliate marketing is great, but if you have specialized or expert knowledge in something then an online course may be the way to go.
When you make money online with affiliate marketing, only a portion of the revenue you generated is shared with you.
Plus, the company can change it at any time.
If you create your own course, you can keep 100% of the revenue, plus you could find other people to promote the product and give them an affiliate commission.
#5) Be an Online Coach or Create a Coaching Program
The great thing about being a coach is it’s often a premium service, meaning you can make larger amounts of money quickly.
For example, let’s say you create a coaching program where you meet with somebody for 1-hour a week for 8 weeks and it’s $399 for the package.
That’s $50 an hour that your making plus it’s a decent sized sale.
If you do 2-3 of those a month you’re making a solid $800-$1,200 per month in extra revenue that you generated online.
If you’re offering great value, you can always sell your packages for even more as well.
You could also create a group coaching program and charge a lower price point but put more people in the group.
We will get into that later on when we talk about Facebook groups, but keep this in mind as an option to frame your thinking when we get to the Facebook groups section.
#6) Start a Blog
There are millions of websites and blogs online competing with each other but still… everyone should have a blog/website.
Almost everything the average person does online now is on rented space.
Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, KiK, LinkedIn etc.
All these platforms are owned by somebody else and you just have an account that can be shut down at any time.
They aren’t assets. They help increase your reach but they are tools.
A blog or website increases your authority and perceived value.
It’s also something you own.
We don’t know the parameters of websites that are built over decades and passed from generation to generation but I believe they will eventually be valuable family assets.
Owning a dot.com domain that has good content will eventually be super valuable.
There are only so many domain names and variations, that’s why there are now extensions like .info, .net, .anything…
They are running out of virtual real estate and owning a .com domain with good content will eventually be like owning property in Manhattan.
Of course, I could be wrong but as cheap and easy as it is to start a website… what do you have to lose.
#7) Make Money Online With a YouTube Channel
As I said, this is rented space but it’s still one of the best ways to earn money online.
YouTube is the 2nd largest search engine in the world and owned by Google.
Over 300 hours of video is uploaded to YouTube every minute and over 5 billion videos a day are consumed (1).
But guess what, even though competition is fierce, most people uploading videos don’t study YouTube Seo or how to rank, so that’s an opportunity.
Plus, it’s growing.
Have you ever ran out of things to binge watch on Netflix or Hulu?
Of course, because the television and movie industry can’t keep up with people wanting to sit in front of the TV.
More and more people are starting to binge watch YouTube so there are more and more people on the platform and they get over 30 million visitors a day.
There are 7+ Billion people in the world so YouTube is just getting started.
To make money online with YouTube from ads, you need 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time.
So start a channel and start putting out good, quality content optimized for the YouTube algorithm.
Every person with a million subscribers started with zero.
While your waiting to qualify for ad approval, you can also make money on YouTube by using affiliate links.
#8) Start a Podcast
This is perhaps a greater opportunity than YouTube.
Podcast listening is growing faster than the number of people creating content.
That means if you create a podcast and consistently put out good content people are searching for you can create a strong audience base.
You can monetize this by taking on sponsors, taking on ads, sending people to your website or other online channels, selling coaching, etc.
There are so many options.
The other unique thing about making money with a podcast is that a podcast offers a unique opportunity to build a relationship with your audience.
Most podcast listeners are commuting when listening.
They’ve turned off the radio and opted for a podcast.
That means that unlike online platforms, they aren’t distracted and constantly clicking to something else, leaving your video or blog post, etc.
In other words, they aren’t changing the channel.
That means they will listen all the way through and this will help build up the know, like, and trust factor they have with you as the host of the podcast.
If that wasn’t good enough, most podcast listeners are similar to linked in users.
They are successful and have a pretty solid income with disposable income to spend.
This makes them very prospects for almost any niche.
#9) Leverage a Private Facebook Group to Make Money Online
This is a fantastic way to earn money online and most people don’t think about it.
When you combine it with some of the other options, it can be quite lucrative.
Right now, the Facebook algorithm promotes (shows) engaging Facebook groups over other Facebook stuff such as business pages or personal pages.
Facebook wants people engaged and staying on the platform.
You can hack the Facebook algorithm by creating and growing a Facebook group around a particular niche.
Then, as as the administrator of the group, you can promote your own products, coaching programs, affiliate links, etc.
You could also parlay it into a private paid Facebook group.
I know of one person who has a large free group on Facebook and a podcast.
He uses them both to promote his private coaching group (another facebook group).
To be in that program it costs about $150 per month.
He has over 100 people in that program. $150 x 117= $17,550 per month.
I know another person who took a different route.
He already had an audience and online presence, so he created a paid membership Facebook group at the much lower price point of $20 per month.
He has over 15,000 members.
15,000 x $20 = $300,000 per month!
There are so many options to make money online, you just have to pick a strategy that makes sense to you and move forward.
#10) Compete for Designs on 99Designs.com
If you’re an artist or designer, one of the coolest ways to make money is to compete on 99Designs for jobs.
The site works like this:
People who need logos, t-shirt designs, packaging, etc. post their job and what they are looking for (what makes a great design for them) on the site.
Then designers submit designs through the website.
If your design is selected, you win the cash amount that the company or person who started the design contest is willing to pay.
There are a couple of other companies that do the same thing, so if this is something you’re interested in just do a google search for “sites like 99 designs” to get all your current options.
#11) Make Money Online Creating Lesson Plans
As a full time educator, I can tell you teachers are overworked and underpaid.
They are very busy grading papers, calling parents, and dealing with a plethora of state mandated ridiculousness.
Many of the teachers I know try to save time by looking for lesson plans online instead of starting from scratch.
That means if you’re knowledgeable in a specific topic (History, math, science, etc.) and are able to create lessons for teachers to use in class, you can get paid every time a teacher uses it.
They pay a small fee to download and use the lesson, you make a fee for creating it.
All you really have to do is understand the teaching standards for your state and incorporate them.
Expert tip: If you want to sell more, try to create easy lessons for teacher to do that increase student engagement without much effort on their part.
You’ll sell more of these than just a standard cookie cutter worksheet.
Make Money Online Renting Stuff
I’m dubbing this the “rent stuff” section.
It’s only for a few points so if you want to skip it feel free, but this is a new niche that has developed over the last few years and can be quite profitable.
#12) Rent Your Stuff (from your house)
Jim Rohn said “I teach kids to have 2 bikes. One to ride… and one to rent.”
Now, that just got easier!
Check out the website called RentNotBuy.com.
This site allows you to rent out all kinds of things.
It’s set up kind of like craigslist for renting.
The benefit is if you have something that you can rent over and over, you can make recurring income.
Instead of needing to sell your prized possessions for cash, maybe you can just rent it.
That way you get to keep it but you can still create a little income from it.
#13) Make Money Renting Your Car
Do you have an extra vehicle or a fantastic vehicle you could do without for a few days?
If you do, you can rent it to others on Turo.
Don’t bypass this idea if you don’t have an exciting, exotic car.
Yes, those are great to rent and some people do for special events.
But my guess is, in this space it would be economy cars, vans, trucks, or SUV’s that rent the best.
Anybody who drives an economy car with great gas mileage sometimes needs a larger vehicle.
Maybe they need a truck to move something or a van/SUV to transport a larger group for an event.
Their need is your opportunity.
On the other side, sometimes people who have large vehicles may have a trip to make and they’d rather not put the mileage on their car or want to spend less on gas.
If you have an economy car and can find transportation for the duration of their trip, this is a great option to put some money in your pocket.
Just list your vehicle and reply to the inquiries.
#14) Rent out a Room on AirBnb
AirBnb is all the rage right now.
There are also some other sites like it such as Homeaway and VRBO.
Basically, if you have an extra room or extra house (or are willing to leave your house while somebody else rents it), you can make money online renting out your space on these sites.
If you’re listing your space on multiple sites, you’ll just need to make sure you are not double booking people.
That could be catastrophic!
Also, the key is to get lots of high ratings.
Make sure your property is in pristine condition and you get great reviews.
In other words, pay attention to detail.
Cleanliness and customer service is a must.
Bad reviews will quickly put a stop to your chances to make money online with these sites.
#15) Rent out Your Pool (or somebody elses)
I recently saw a shark tank episode where somebody was pitching a new site called Swimply.
The premise of the site is that there are thousands of people with pools who rarely use them (which is true).
Swimply allows them to list their pool and features of their pool space and rent it out to people who want somewhere to swim.
Maybe they don’t have a pool and want to do something special for the family, maybe they want a private birthday party…
There are so many reasons people would want a pool.
The great thing is, depending on your area, there may not even much competition on this site yet.
If you don’t have a pool, that’s okay too.
Try to contact people with pools and offer to do it for them and split the proceeds.
You could start by contacting people you know with pools.
Or you could find other houses by using google maps or zillow, write down the addresses, and send them a letter.
Offer to manage their pool space and rental with them for a portion of the proceeds.
You’ll want to make it all turn-key if you want anybody to agree to this.
Offer to list it, take pictures, manage it, clean up after people leave… everything.
All they have to do is not use the pool area during the rental times and split the rental proceeds with you.
#15) Start a Home Based Business
This is often an overlooked option because people picture the home based business industry from 20 years ago or they picture their friend spamming Facebook and doing it all wrong.
If you attack this strategically (like a business) it can be quite profitable.
In fact, more and more professionals are leaving their corporate jobs to replace their income using this option since there are so many benefits to this business model.
#16) Make Money Online Flipping Websites
The reality is, the online world is like the regular world in many ways.
There is only so much “real estate” and a limited number of words and phrases that can be made into a legitimate website.
In fact, there are so many other options now instead of .com such as .io, .net, .info, etc.
But at the end of the day, the .com websites are still the most valuable.
The way you make money online this way is to buy up domain names with a site like GoDaddy or some other domain registration company.
Then you can sit on it like a piece of land or build it out and make it worth more, then sell it for more than you bought it for.
#17) Songwriting and Music Publishing
If you’re great at writing music but haven’t had your big break or don’t have the dream to be a star, you can always write for somebody else.
If you have already written, you could even try to sell those if they’ve never been released.
Simply do a search for “freelance songwriting” and you’ll get a list of websites where you can use your skill to make money online selling your musical abilities.
#18) Freelance Video Editing
Are you good at creating and editing videos?
If so, you could do freelance work online for people, schools, or businesses.
If you want to make even more, you could market and sell your skills to local businesses and make videos for them.
They will probably expect to pay more than somebody trying to get the cheapest price on a freelance website.
But working through a freelance website could let you get some valuable examples under your belt and build a portfolio.
If you don’t like or want to sell to local businesses you could always just stick to getting jobs on freelance sites.
You can still make a pretty good income doing it.
#19) Money Money Online as a Virtual Notary
A notary basically verifies identities, documents, and signature.
Notaries are (and always will be) needed so it’s a pretty secure business to build.
First you need to get licensed in your state (or multiple states) and then find a platform you want to use for your business and start drumming up customers.
A virtual notary does the same thing as a regular notary except they do it by verifying information with documentation.
You can get more specific information on that through this website.
#20) Rent Your Camera Gear
If you have good quality camera gear and you have no desire to sell it or be a photographer for people, you can always rent your gear to others.
There are plenty of people out there dipping their toes in photography.
Maybe they don’t have the money to buy gear, they don’t want to buy it, or they just want to use it for a short project.
A simple google search will reveal plenty of options or you can use Kitsplit, one of the best known camera rental sites.
#21) Do Voice-Overs with ACX
What is a voice-over?
Have you ever seen a commercial or Youtube video that just had pictures with a voice “over” the pictures telling a story or describing what is going on?
This is a voiceover.
If it’s exciting when you talk or you have a unique voice like James Earl Jones, this is definitely a great option for you.
Go to ACX to get started and learn more.
#22) Start a Web Design or Web Development Business
Web design is not really that difficult, at least not like it used to be.
You used to need to know how to code and all that stuff.
I run this website and multiple other ones and I’ve never done a line of coding in my life.
You can teach yourself on your own or you can take a cheap course like the one my brother has that walks you through launching from start to finish.
If you’re good at writing, you can also create content for people on a weekly or monthly basis after you create their website.
Then you can get paid even more every month.
The great thing about a web design business is that you can do it locally for small businesses, it’s not complicated, and it’s not expensive…. but there is definitely a market for it.
If you use WordPress, it’s a matter of choosing a theme and installing plugins for various options.
The better you get at it, the more you will make.
#23) Make Money Online with Social Media or Digital Marketing
Businesses are hurting for business right now and everyone is online.
This is a perfect opportunity to start a local digital marketing and advertising agency.
If you’re willing to learn how to use social media and online marketing to drive sales, you can provide a valuable service to small business owners.
Most business owners are weighted down with trying to run their business, get the job done, and manage their employees.
They don’t have time to learn the intricacies of digital marketing but if you can increase their sales and profitability, they can justify spending the money.
They key is to make sure you bring in more business than they’re charging.
For example, if they spend $1,000 but make $2,000, you’ll soon have a great client who comes back month after month and refers you to others.
But if you take $1,000 from them and you can’t show an increase in revenue, you’ll lose their business.
So make sure you know what you’re doing before you start charging and set up systems to track success so you can show them data at the end of the moth or quarterly.
#24) Take Online Transcription or Captioner Jobs
If you’re good at listening and typing, transcribing could be a perfect fit for you.
Basically, you just transcribe audio or video content into text.
Companies need this done for a variety of reasons and they’re willing to pay to have it done right.
A google search can let you see companies you can do it for or you can read an entire article on it here.
#25) Make Money Online by Freelancing
If none of the other ideas resonated with you, freelancing in any area can be a great option.
We already discussed freelancing as a video editor and transcriber, but there are plenty of other options.
Many of the options above can be done online as a freelancer, but there are other options as well.
You can do freelance writing (books, blogs, ad copy), freelance photography, freelance video making, freelance software writing, and a variety of other freelance jobs.
A good place to start is Upwork.
Look at their potential jobs and see if you are uniquely qualified for any of the job categories.
The benefit of Upwork is companies expect better quality than a site like Fiverr, but they are also willing to pay more for that level of quality.
#27) Sell Your Wares on Etsy
Etsy’s been around for a long time and is a proven way to make money online.
If you’re crafty and able to produce custom goods, you can sell them on this platform.
Wall decorations, face masks, gifts, and trinkets…
Etsy provides a place where customers go when they want something customized or are looking for a unique gift.
Brainstorm some ideas, set up a store, and get your products out there.
Final Thoughts About Making Money Online
I hope this article was helpful and gave you some good ideas for how to work from home and make money online.
We’ve been working online to generate income for a few years now and are always looking for others to help.
If you’re interested in working directly with us or even learning more about how that works, you can apply here.
Lastly (but most importantly), if you’d like a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, click here.
Good luck and God Bless!
Jason & Daniele