When the COVID-19 pandemic first hit, millions of former cubicle dwellers became online workers almost overnight, and to say the transition was chaotic would be a huge understatement. For those newly remote workers the idea of conducting business online was a foreign concept, but for others making money online was nothing new.
In the age of the internet, the career you desire could be just a click away, and there are many more ways to make money online than ever before. The path you choose will depend on a number of factors, from your skillset and education to your interests and abilities. With that in mind, here are some timely tips for how to make money online.
Make Money Online With Things You Are Good At
In many ways working online is not that much different than working in a traditional office. You are still exchanging your time and your talents for the money you need to live, and the basic rules of economics are not suspended just because the work takes place online.
If you want to succeed at making money online, start by focusing on the things you are good at. If those talents are things you like to do, so much the better, but beginning your exploration with this focus is always a smart thing to do.
Do you have a way with words? If so a career as a freelance writer could be the perfect way to express yourself and make money doing it. Do you have a knack for research and genealogy? As a professional money finder, you can make money, finding money! Do you have a background in education? If so working as an online tutor will allow you to share what you know while shaping the next generation. The examples are nearly endless, so think about what you are best at and build an online career around it.
Recognize That You Are a Business and a Brand
When you work online, you are essentially creating a one-person business, and the success of that business will lie, at least in part, on your ability to build a personal brand. Recognizing that you are both a business and a brand is key to success online, and the importance of this recognition would be difficult to overstate.
Focusing on building your personal brand will allow you to attract new clients, and learning about things like market research and advertising can be a very smart thing to do. Since you will be conducting your operations online, having a solid presence on the web is also vital, including a personal and business website, social media accounts, and perhaps even a blog.
Review the Tax Implications and Potential Tax Savings
Working online can be taxing – quite literally. If you want to make a go of it, you will first need to understand the financial implications. When you work for yourself you will be subject to the self-employment tax, a combination of levies for Social Security and Medicare. Employees pay these taxes as well, of course, but since you are in essence both employee and employer your actual levies will be doubled.
Paying these taxes can be a challenge, but the good news is that online workers may also qualify for some lucrative tax savings. There are specific retirement accounts just for the self-employed, along with deductions for things like internet access and home office space. You should always consult a tax professional for specific guidance, but these deductions can really add up.
Seek Out Recurring Sources of Revenue
Working online can be an uncertain path, especially if are used to working as an employee. Revenue streams can be difficult to predict, with one month great and the next terrible.
One way to even out these peaks and valleys is to create certain streams of income. Recurring revenue is a great way to make money online, and the predictable nature of these revenue streams will make everything from household budgeting to paying taxes easier. The recurring revenue model will vary depending on the type of online occupation, but here are some ideas to get you started.
15. Online courses
16. Repeat clients
Each of these options can be valuable in its own right, but combining them can make your online income even more predictable. Over time you should get a feel for what works online and what does not, so do not be afraid to experiment.
Making money online has never been easier, but that does not mean success is guaranteed. The tips above can help you stake your claim in the online world, so you can supplement your traditional income and hopefully one day replace it entirely.