Let’s be honest, we’ve all searched for ‘make money online’ in Google.
I’m the first one to admit it – at age 16, I wanted to earn a few pounds and since I was living on a farm in the middle of nowhere, the only place I could turn to was the internet. It worked, and now I continue to make money online. And I’m not talking about surveys, matched betting or becoming some useless clicking machine – I’m talking about real money. Money you can live on.
Making money online is especially helpful for us students. We know the online world well, we know how to get around and it allows us to be flexible to work when we want (and it’s something you can put on your CV!). In the end I was able to make over £500/month working online. 🤑
Here is a little summary of 5 ways you can make money online, from the easiest to hardest.
Freelancing is really great if you’re practising a certain skill at university. If you’re studying programming, you can do some freelance programming on the side. If you’re studying a language, you can do some freelance translating on the side, and on and on.
If you feel you don’t have any of those skills and you’re not studying them, no worries. Just start by trying something out. This could be writing, drawing, marketing, blogging, graphic design, programming etc. Any skill you feel people will need – start practising it and see if this is something you could do. You can start with something more general like a virtual assistant. Or something super specific like writing food articles. Try a bit of everything and see what works for you – you can try programming free for 7 days on Treehouse and do some free courses on Udemy. This is great because it also adds experience to your CV. 💁
For a more detailed way on how to get started with freelancing check out this post: How to Earn Money Freelancing in University
2. Fiverr Gigs
This is closely linked to freelancing, but is a little different because you don’t need a specific skill here. With Fiverr you can sell anything from ‘a message on your belly’ to Amazon reviews and lessons – I’m not kidding. I remember making a quick $5 by writing reviews on different websites (sometimes they would send me the product). Pretty sweet and easy money. 😛
The key with Fiverr is identifying something people are willing to spend money on and then being the best at it. This could be ‘singing Happy Birthday in a funny accent’ to designing a special kind of logo to being their personal shopper. Be as creative as you can. At first you’ll only earn $5 doing it but the more reviews you get the more people will buy – and once you get to a certain level you can really earn good money doing it (I’ve got over 50 reviews now!).
However, two things to take into account:
- Fiverr does take a 20%
- Payments take 2 weeks to go through
And if you want to be extra clever, you can turn your Fiverr gigs into a skill-building gig too: creative writing, programming, designing, etc. It can get pretty fun 😉.
3. Teaching online
If you speak fluent English, you’ll always find someone who wants to take classes.
You could also tutor students on the subject you’re studying at school if you feel confident enough. This also works great since you’ll be learning as you teach as well. #winwin
Once again, I suggest testing on Fiverr. Put up an announcement saying you teach the basics of Business Management for £5. Same for Upwork. If people click and buy, that means there is demand. If not, try something else.
You can teach English online on sites like:
I started at $5/hour online and then in some cases went up all the way to $35/hour. There is a pretty huge demand, so it’s a great job for college students.
4. eCommerce website
I kind of debated on whether I should put this one on the list – it requires a lot of effort, isn’t very easy and doesn’t always work. But if there’s a product that you’re very passionate about and you would love to sell to others than go ahead.
The easiest way to do this is simply by setting up an online shop on Shopify, buying products from a Dropshipping website like Aliexpress, showcasing them using Oberlo and then selling. You buy at wholesale price (so very cheap) and then sale at retail price (pricey). The rest is all for you. 😎
The hardest part is picking a good product to sell. Don’t worry if you’re feeling a little confused – the key is to read the guides and follow them carefully. Once you understand how it works the rest is pretty simple.
Start with the Excellent Oberlo Guide to getting started
And check out these awesome successful case studies of people building an eCommerce shop: Case studies
It’s pretty cool if you can sell something specific that you’re passionate about – football, makeup, books etc.
Yes, I even tried doing it by selling chokers (no I’m not passionate about chokers): Money Experiment 2. I abandoned it because it was taking up too much time and I had no idea what I was doing. 😔
5. Affiliate marketing
The last one on the list for a good reason; it’s pretty damn hard.
It basically consists of you getting a commission every time someone clicks on your link or buys a product you recommend. It requires hustle and time, but can be pretty lucrative and will help you earn money online.
Neil Patel and Pat Flynn are experts on affiliate marketing and have some great guides. Honestly, this requires hustle and quite a bit of effort. You can do affiliate marketing through a blog (like me) or through an eCommerce shop (see number 4 above). If you love content marketing or marketing in general, this is also a snazzy option for you.
You are almost certain to make some extra cash following these different tactics outlined above – but as usual, the most important is to have hustle, discipline and to keep trying. Making money online is harder than a student job because you’re the one who needs to go out there and find the clients. But at the end of the day, the benefits hugely outweigh the disadvantages; more flexibility, freedom and no nasty boss telling you what to do. Personally, it’s a no-brainer 🧠.
Have any questions about these money making strategies? Drop a comment below 😉