The idea of being able to work from anywhere you have internet access is appealing to millions of people. While the concept of making money online is nice, turning this into a reality can be challenging. 

Most people grew up with parents working in office, trade, and service jobs that required them to be present physically. However, today people are cutting ties with tradition and working remotely. 

Do you want to do the same? Then check out the easiest, cheapest legal ways to make money online. 

Go Freelance 

Freelancing is the way to go if you’re looking to use your skill to make money online (without upfront costs). This is when you work for clients who hire you for one-off or regular gigs. You’re not an employee, so there are no taxes taken from your earnings. 

This means you’ll have to do taxes yourself – but that’s a small trade-off when you have the power to work wherever and for whomever you want.

So how do you become a freelancer? If you have a computer and internet, then you’re already equipped. 

Here’s a quick list of skills you can turn into a freelance career:

  • Writing/Editing: Write or edit content for blogs, websites, e-books, paperback books, newsletters, etc. 
  • Programming: Code video games, applications, and software for startups and established companies. 
  • Accounting/Bookkeeping: Manage the finances of individuals and businesses. 
  • Online Tutorials: Teach others what you know (lifestyle, health, business, parenting, etc.)

Whatever skill you have, you can likely offer it as a service digitally. You can find potential clients on Craigslist, LinkedIn, and other social media platforms. 

Use Robo-Advisors To Invest

Not everyone’s cut out for Wall Street. All the noise and confusion on the floor of the pit can be quite intimidating. Plus, a lot of folks go into it without earning anything, or worse, losing it all. 

So a safer way to jump into investing without high risk or fear is to use robo-advisors. These AI use an algorithm to advise you on the best investments to make. 

The fees are also nominal, sitting somewhere between $0.25 annually for accounts over $5,000 and $1 per month for accounts under $5,000. 

Here are several to check out:

Now, what if you don’t have a lot of money to invest? Not to worry – you can start with as little as $5. Think of it as flipping your spare change into hundreds. 

Also, with Acorns, you get a Visa card that invests in you each time you shop with it – pretty cool, huh?

Become a Virtual Assistant

Are you good at conducting research, making calls, setting appointments, and organizing your day-to-day life? Then there’s someone out there who could use your services. 

As a virtual assistant, you help businesses and entrepreneurs with small tasks, like booking flights, managing their schedule, and sending business-related emails. 

So if you have a knack for keeping things orderly and managing long to-do lists (without freaking out), then this could turn into a profitable gig. 

All you need to make money online in this area is a computer with internet, a phone, and free tools, such as Trello to help keep things organized. You can find such jobs on places such as Fiverr, Upwork, and Craigslist.

Become An Affiliate Marketer

Ever been to a blog that contained links to a product on Amazon or another marketplace? These bloggers are affiliate marketers. 

If you click on that link and purchase the item, they receive a percentage of the sale. You can do the same by creating your own niche blog. 

It has to be niche so it’ll attract specific people who will be interested in the products and purchase them. For example, you can have a blog about:

  • Weight loss
  • Muscle building
  • Apparel and shoes
  • Parenting
  • Babies
  • Herbs
  • Small business
  • Haircare
  • Beard care (yes, this is popular right now)

It’s a good idea to use tools like AnswerThePublic to get an idea of what people are interested in. Type in a few keywords to see what people are asking. 

For example, “beard care” may bring up questions about how to grow a beard, how to care for a long beard, how to trim a beard, and so on. If there are a lot of queries and questions, then it may be a good idea to use it as a blog theme. You can then turn the questions into topics to cover on your blog (laced with beard care products). 

Just be sure the niche is popular, so it has a higher potential to be profitable.

To get started, you’ll have to sign up to become an Amazon Associate or another affiliate network, such as Clickbank or Share-A-Sale

Start Selling Your Advice

Maybe you don’t have any skills to offer (or simply don’t want to use them). If that’s the case, then you can choose to sell your knowledge instead. 

It’s big business to coach others in becoming better at life, business, family, and money. People are looking to become entrepreneurs and improve their lives overall. They’re even willing to pay you for advice to achieve their goals. 

You can do this in one or more ways. One, you can offer one-on-one calls. Two, you can host group webinars with a handful of people at a time, so you can answer questions. 

Then once you gain popularity, you can offer an online course or membership site to automate your coaching. This will free up your time and boost your income exponentially.

To start coaching, all you need is the internet, a computer, and a reliable phone or VoIP service.

Start Earning Money Online

Making money online isn’t mysterious, expensive, or impossible to do. It can be as simple as using your existing talents and skills and turning that into an online business. 

However, if you want to make quick money for inexpensive dates with the spouse or holiday spending, then you may want to consider online surveys, AI-assisted investing, or working with market research companies. 

Whatever you decide to do, make sure it’s legitimate, cheap, and legal!