7 Ways to Make Money Online From Home for Free in 2020
With the coronavirus putting the world under lockdown and threatening the global economy, what better moment than now to try and earn a little side income from home. From teaching to writing, here are seven ways to make money online from the comfort of your own home in 2020.
Video transcript: 2020 has shaken the world. Eventually, everyone will be back to their normal lives and their jobs. But do you want to be?
The job loss caused by the pandemic has been a serious wakeup call. While many people are back at work, they've woken up to the realization that they can no longer rely on one stream of income. Or, they just don't want to.
Decades ago, you could go to school, get a job, and eventually work your way up in a company and afford a comfortable lifestyle that you've always dreamed of. But that's not the reality in 2020. If you want to build your dream life, you need to start by building multiple streams of income. And those income streams can be online, and you can do them all from home.
Remember, when you're working a 9:00 to 5:00, you're investing in your company's success. You need to make sure that you're spending your 5:00 to 9:00, investing in your own personal success. And that investment in yourself can make you money instead of costing you money.
In this video, I'm gonna give you seven ways to make money online from home for free. That's right, for free. Meaning, no upfront costs. And you won't be seeing dropshipping on this list. That's because even though dropshipping is an amazing business model that doesn't have a huge cost to entry, it does still require you to invest in a few things.
Check out our other videos if you're interested in getting started with dropshipping. But if you're looking for ways to make money online with no upfront cost at all, this list is for you. That's enough talking. Let's start scheming.
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1. Write for Medium
Let's jump straight into the first way to make money online from home. It is writing for Medium.com. If you've never heard of Medium, I'll give you a quick rundown. Medium is a website where you can write and share articles about almost any subject. But Medium works like a lot of newspapers, and works on a subscription basis.
Well, if you jump on Medium.com right now, you'll be able to read articles for free. You have a limited number of articles that you can read until you need to pay $5 a month to access the entire website. This $5 membership fee allows the people who actually write articles for medium to be paid for their work.
And guess what? It doesn't cost you anything to start writing those articles.
You can jump on to Medium.com and sign up to start writing and sharing articles. All you need to do is attach your banking information so that they can pay you as soon as your articles go live.
How To Start Earning Money Writing for Medium
Now, if you write articles for Medium.com, your pay will depend on how many people actually view your articles and how long they spend reading them. YouTuber, Shelby Church, did an experiment where she tested writing articles for Medium and seeing how much she would get paid.
I'll give you the TL;DR version. The first few articles that she wrote on Medium didn't get that many views in traction, and she only made a few cents.
However, the last article that she wrote for them made over $6,000. You heard that right. How did her article make so much? And how can you follow the same strategy to start earning money on Medium.com as well? Medium has numerous publications on their website. Publications are just curated articles that people submit to them. These publications have thousands of followers. So if you submit your article to a publication, and then they re-share it with their audience, you'll be getting all those viewers looking and reading your article.
Now, if a publication shares your article, you actually get all the pay from that article, and they don't take any commission from it. Also, there is no limit to the number of publications that you can submit your article to or how many articles you can submit. So, you're free to continue writing and submitting your articles to as many publications that you feel are relevant.
Of course, not all of your articles will be accepted. In Shelby's experiment, there were a few articles that she submitted to publications that were not accepted. However, she continued to submit them, and eventually, one of her articles was accepted into a huge publication with tens of thousands of followers.
Now, once it was accepted there, it was actually also picked up by Medium.com, spotlighted on their front page, and sent out in an email. Now, once that happened, that's where that $6,000 earnings came from.
Of course, you can't expect that every article you write will be featured in a publication, or featured by Medium themselves. However, this is a huge amount of money. And she herself said that that article took only one hour to write.
While it can be slow to start, Medium can be an amazing way to make money online, especially if you have a knack or interest in writing. Just don't get discouraged and continue to write as many articles as you can and submit them into publications.
2. Sell Stock Footage
Let's move on to our second way to make money online from home for free. If you read blogs, watch YouTube videos, or create your own content, you've definitely worked with stock footage before. And selling stock footage is my next suggestion for how to make money online from home.
Stock footage is photos and videos about every possible subject imaginable that you can use on blog posts, videos, or anywhere that you share contents online.
While there are some amazing free stock photo websites, many of them also actually charge by photo and video, and one of those is Shutterstock. If someone wants to use a photo or video from Shutterstock, then, they actually need to purchase the rights to do so. When they purchase those rights, part of the money goes to the person who originally shot the photo or the video, and that can be you.
How To Sell Stock Footage on Shutterstock
Now, I want to make something super clear. You do not need to be a professional photographer or even have a professional camera to make money selling stock footage online. Let's look at an example from Shutterstock. In this video, you can see a woman at home who is talking on a headset and taking notes while working on her laptop.
Many people would be able to shoot a scene exactly like this right now in their living room.
If you look at the cost of the video, you'll notice that the 4K video costs €149. It's expensive, but lots of companies and businesses are willing to pay that price for the stock videos. Now, if you compare to the price of a photo or videos that are just HD, you'll see that 4K costs way more.
And if you wanna sell stock footage online, that's a strategy that you need to follow. If you want to make the most money selling stock footage, you need to be shooting videos and shooting videos in 4K.
But before you freak out thinking that you don't have a camera that shoots in 4K, I want to remind you that most iPhones and a lot of Android phones actually have 4K video cameras built right into them. That's right, I could make a replica of that video in my living room right here with my iPhone and list it on Shutterstock for €149.
Of course, how much money you make actually depends on how many people purchase the rights to your videos. But this is an amazing strategy for someone who's looking for a passive income source because once you post the videos, you don't have to do anything, you can just continue to live your life and focus on other ventures, take more photos and more videos, and it will still be listed on Shutterstock, making you money.
To give you an example, Beth from Handcraft Films did an experiment where she wanted to see how much she would get paid in the entire year of 2019 for stock footage. In 2019, she made over $3000 selling stock footage. If you have a smartphone or camera, you have no excuse to not give this a try.
3. Resell Old Clothes, Shoes, and Accessories
The next way to make money online from home is reselling your old clothes, shoes, and accessories. I know, I know you're watching this video because you want to make money not $20 selling one random band T-shirt that you forgot about. You know what I would really like? A Mariah Carey band T-shirt. That's what I would really like.
The online re-selling game has completely exploded in the last few years. The Vice President of Marketplace at Depop reports that there are many sellers who are bringing in as much as $300,000 per year.
This is not your weird uncle's eBay store. Maybe dad? My dad had an eBay store selling goods from Russia. Depop is a marketplace that is a mix between eBay and Instagram. If you're part of Gen Z or if you know people that are Gen Z, they've definitely either browsed or used Depop before.
The secret to Depop's success and ultimately your success using Depop is its explore function. If you wanna find something to sell on eBay, you have to type it in exactly. Getting a word wrong or spelling something wrong, sometimes will not bring up the results that you're looking for.
Depop, on the other hand, helps you find products that you might not be looking for or at least are related to the keywords that you search for. That means when you wanna list something to sell, you can apply different tags and Depop's algorithm will actually help others find it, even if they didn't specifically look for it in the first place.
How To Start Selling on Depop
If you're having a hard time wrapping your head around this type of algorithm, think about TikTok, it kinda works in a similar way, not exactly because TikTok's algorithm is under lock and key, but you get the idea.
Also, with Depop you aren't actually limited to only selling vintage clothes, if you make accessories, or crafts, or some sort of artwork, you can also sell it on Depop. It's actually an amazing marketplace because the marketing is done for you.
To give you an example, if I wanted to create and sell my own necklaces, I would run into the challenge of marketing. Once I set up a store, I would have to find customers, whether it be on Instagram or TikTok or with Facebook ads. But on Depop, all they need to do is tag your products, and all of a sudden everyone is seeing them.
It's an amazing strategy if you're just looking to get started selling a few small things.
Now, you might be thinking, "Okay, I can definitely make some money on Depop, but this is definitely not a long-term strategy for me." That's fine. When it comes to making money online, you want to be really open. Whatever you can do to take it to the next step, take it to the next level is what's gonna help you grow and develop a bigger business in the future. Even if you run out of things to sell on Depop, doing so will give you more money to invest in another business and it will help give you some marketing skills and maybe product photography skills that you can take to your next venture.
Let's move on to the next strategy. The next way to make money online from home is teaching, but I don't mean tutoring. Actually, I mean creating your own course and teaching something on a platform like Skillshare.
I'm going to be honest, whenever you look up ways to make money online, creating a course is usually on there. But I never really thought that this was a realistic way for people to actually make money because I thought that you would need a lot of credentials and you would need a lot of experience before anyone would actually want to take your course.
But I was wrong. I was researching Skillshare and becoming a teacher, and I came across their FAQ where they cite:
“On average first-time teachers earn $200 in their first month on Skillshare with top teachers earning upwards of $3,000.”
I was shocked. Of course, that's not a guarantee, but that was super promising to read. Now, I know what you might be thinking: I don't have anything to teach. And that's probably not true. Most of us have a skill that we definitely can teach others, it just might take some digging to find it.
How To Start Teaching on Skillshare
I say that because Skillshare is a teaching platform that teaches courses on just about anything from animation and all the way to productivity hacks. For example, one of the most popular courses in the productivity category is how to study for exams. Ooh, I should have taken that one. No, nothing would have helped me.
That's right. Not how to use Adobe After Effects, not how to make motion graphics, or code your own website, but how to study for exams. Now, I don't mean to downplay the topic, studying for exams is hard, trust me, I would be the first to know and the first person to take this course if I were still in university.
However, I just chose it as an example to show you that there's a variety of things that people are looking to learn. If you want to teach something, think about a challenge you've overcome and also just browse the Skillshare website, whether it's growing an Instagram, studying for exams, or even learning how to make a perfect cup of coffee, there is definitely something that you know that people want to learn.
Also, you need to get over the idea that you need to have specific credentials. If there is a challenge that you faced before and you've overcome it, you actually have the perfect insight as a student to help others learn.
For example, when it comes to learning languages, people always suggest that you learn a language from someone who also learned it as a second or third language rather than a native speaker because they'll actually understand the struggles that you're going through and what challenges you're gonna be facing.
So, if you've recently learned something, you're in the perfect position to teach someone else. Also one of the best things about making a Skillshare course is that once you create it, and yes, it is gonna take a lot of time to create the course, it's passive income. You don't really need to do anything except often check-in and respond to comments or make edits if you need to, but otherwise, it sits there and brings you money.
Let's move on to the next strategy, which is making money from home online with Instagram. Now, before I explain further, I wanna say that this does not require you to become an influencer. Actually, you don't even need to post a single photo of yourself to get this strategy to work.
That's because one of the best ways to make money online with Instagram is by creating a themed account. Personal Instagram pages are filled with pictures of the owner or photos that the owner has taken. Themed accounts, on the other hand, repost photos, videos, and other forms of content that are related to a specific topic such as travel, for example.
I'm sure, we've all passed an Instagram before that was focused on beautiful travel destinations, that was re-posting other people's photos about destinations that they've been to, and these themed pages are where the money is at.
How To Start an Instagram Themed Page
If you start and grow a themed page on Instagram, brands and companies will start reaching out to you and paying you to feature their products or advertise for them on your feed or in your Instagram stories. With Instagram, there is no set pricing model to follow, which works in your favor because you can negotiate with companies and brands to make sure that you're asking for a price that works for you.
You can charge more if your Instagram account has great engagement, which means how many comments you're getting, and also how many likes each of your posts gets, as well as how many followers you have.
While there is no set price, an influencer agency did some research and found that the average price of a shoutout for an account with 25,000 to 50,000 followers, note, that would be considered a pretty micro-influencer, is between $800 to $1,500. That's insane.
Now, if you wanna grow an Instagram account, it's pretty simple, but that doesn't mean it's easy to do.
And you can watch as many videos on YouTube as you want about how to grow an Instagram, but I'll boil it down for you. You pretty much need to post, post, post, comment, comment, comment and engage, engage, engage.
First, what you're gonna need to do is pick a niche. Now, I would definitely jump on to Google Trends and do some research first to see what sorts of topics, themes, and niches are actually growing in popularity.
Once you do that, I suggest going to Later and signing up for a free account. Later is an app that allows you to schedule Instagram posts. This way, you can constantly be posting on Instagram without worrying about having to research every day and remembering to actually post things.
Once you sign up for Later, I would suggest setting one day aside a week, where you research and find and schedule content to post at least once a day. Ideally, it would be three times, but even just once is enough. Make sure to use Later to find hashtags that are popular within your niche to also make sure it's seen by as many people as possible.
And if you have time and are really dedicated to growing this Instagram as fast as possible, I would make sure that you are commenting, responding, and engaging with as many people as possible a day.
One of the guests that we've had on our channel before, Emma Reid, suggested engaging at least a hundred times a day. That means commenting, liking and just engaging with people on other people's posts, your own, or even within DMs. That's why I said that it's simple, but it's not easy.
If you're dedicated to making money online from home, you either need to pay for it with money or with time. So if you want to do it for free, you're going to need to invest your time.
This is better to accept upfront so that way you'll have more drive and determination when the going gets tough and you might be losing some motivation, but don't.
There is a huge payoff at the end. And definitely use Later to help you schedule posts so that when you're feeling a little less motivated, you'll be fine, because you've got those posts ready to go.
6. Tutor English
The next way to make money online from home is not related to ecommerce and it is English tutoring. English tutoring is one of the best ways to make money online from home. I've actually, personally, had multiple friends who have used this strategy to bring in lots of additional income and pay for trips all around the world.
On average, online English teaching pays around $10 to $40 per hour.
How To Start With English Tutoring
Now, when it comes to the qualifications that you need, it depends on what company you'll be working with. Many companies will require you to have a post-secondary degree. However, other companies will just ask that you have a TEFL certificate.
Now, you can get a TEFL certificate for free, but it is gonna take you some hours to go through the course and actually complete it. While it does take some time to complete, it will definitely pay off in the end.
One of the best things about teaching English online is that you can work as little or as much as you want. That's right. With many of these companies, you can make your own hours, so this is perfect for someone that has a few free hours after their workday or for someone that is off of school for a few weeks and looking to put in as many hours as possible.
To give you an example, if you choose to work one hour twice a week and then three hours on the weekend, you'll be bringing in $100 a week. That's five hours of work a week that you can choose to do whenever you like, that will end up being $400 a month and if you're really dedicated to making money online, five hours a week is nothing, you can do that.
7. Affiliate Marketing
Let's move on to the last method to making money online from home for free, and that is with affiliate marketing. Affiliate marketing is a process in which an affiliate that's gonna be you, by the way, gets paid a commission for marketing another company's products.
To earn money with affiliate marketing, all you need to do is promote a product and share a very specific link with your audience that will allow you to receive part of a commission if someone makes a purchase.
If you watch YouTube, or if you're on Instagram or TikTok, you'll have definitely seen affiliate marketing links before. Many influencers will suggest the product that they use and leave a link down in the description for you to go check out and purchase. Those are affiliate links. That means that even though they don't own the product themselves, they are actually making a small commission for everyone that purchases through that link.
Now, to make money with affiliate marketing, you will need one thing and that is an audience. Yes, you will need an audience to promote your affiliate link too. However, this audience can be on a number of different platforms. Maybe you're interested in starting a YouTube channel, or an Instagram account, as we talked about before, or a TikTok, or even something like a podcast.
The percentage that you earn from each affiliate link really depends on the company that you're working with. If you have an affiliate link to something on Amazon, you only make between one percent and ten percent, which is quite low.
However, if you work with small businesses or a lot of independently owned companies, you can actually set the rate and negotiate it to something that works best for you and the company, of course.
It might not seem like a lot. But remember this, as an affiliate, you don't have to worry about stocking the product, you don't have to worry about packaging it, shipping it, tracking it to the customers, none of that. All you have to worry about when you're doing affiliate marketing is promoting products that you like and showing them off in a way that makes others want to purchase them.
How To Start With Affiliate Marketing
Now, if you don't have an audience yet, don't despair. I would suggest following the same strategy that I mentioned before with Instagram, but using it with TikTok or YouTube. Now, you will need to change the strategy a little bit depending on the platform.
For example, with YouTube, you obviously can't be posting two videos a day. Well, you could, but that would be really intense. Instead, just look up ways online for how to grow best on those platforms.
Ultimately, it normally boils down to constantly posting high-quality content.
So, if you're looking to grow an audience, I would suggest finding something that you're actually really interested in, that way it's not gonna be as difficult for you to constantly be working in your free time to create quality content to share with people.
If you're dedicated to making money online from home, you will need to put the work in. There's no way around it.
Well, that's the end of my list for ways to make money online from home for free. Did I miss the mark on anything? Was there a strategy that you had never heard about before and you're excited to try? Let me know down in the comments below and I'll see you in our next video. Bye.