Is your money making money while you sleep? Does it sound too good to be true? Since we still live in the age of the interest, it’s not that difficult to earn extra money on the side.
With that in mind, here are 11 ways that you can actually earn money while you sleep.
1. Start a blog.
Perhaps the most popular way to earn a passive income is by launching your own blog. It only takes a couple of minutes to setup and is cheap to start - just purchase your domain name and pay for hosting.
After that, start creating amazing content that people would be interested in reading or sharing. For example, if you’re an accountant that has helped small business owners with their taxes, then that could be your blog. I personally have my invoicing blog to help customers know everything there is to know about invoicing. This draws thousands of signups a month.
Make sure the topics you write about are popular. If you still love your pet rock, I doubt there would be enough people visiting your our site to monetize it. But, you never know.
Once you’ve gained a following, you can start making money from of your blog by:
Earning commissions as an affiliate. This is where you push other people’s products or services on your site. Make sure these products or services are relevant to your blog. For example, that accounting blog could become an affiliate for accounting or invoicing software. Once you find an affiliate partner you’ll be given a unique code so that whenever a visitor clicks that link on your site you’ll earn your commission.
Sell-advertising. If you’re site has the traffic to become an affiliate, then it may also be good enough for advertisers to purchase ads on your site. You may start off small, like making under $20 per ad. But, you may eventually be able to charge triple digits. Again, you site must be quality.
Find sponsors. This is slightly different than just selling ads on your site. Sponsorships may be a one-off piece of sponsored content or permanent logo embedded in your footer.
2. Sell your own information product.
If you’re knowledgeable in a certain area, then you can start creating products, such as eBooks or videos, and selling them on your blog. It may take a lot of work to create and market your products, but once all the leg work is over, you can just set back and collect the proceeds.
3. Earn royalties.
If you’re a talented musician, actor, or author, then you could earn royalties from your work. In other words people will pay you for using your work or creative assets.
If you aren’t talented enough, but still interested in earning royalties, then check out Royalty Exchange. It’s a marketplace where you can buy and sell royalties.
4. Create a membership community.
If you’ve proven yourself to be a authority figure, then you can create a membership community where you pay a monthly fee to receive additional high-quality content and information that’s not available to non-members.
One of my favorite examples is Timothy Sykes who makes more than $100,000 per month in passive income through his membership community which discusses how people can make money in trading penny stocks.
5. Install an autoresponder.
Another common online business model is using autoresponders to sell services, products or memberships. This is where people leave their email address on your site and then they’ll receive an automated email containing the link to download products or quality information you have to offer, as well as follow-up with a series of emails.
You’ll a need service like OptinMonster to make this possible. I also recommend you read this Quick Sprout guide to get started with autoresponders.
6. Flip websites.
If you’ve put in the time and effort in building a website and you have gained a lot of traffic, then you may be able to sell it to an interested party by listing on marketplaces like Flippa. I've bought and sold a lot of sites here and made a lot of money.
7. Sell physical products.
Just like with a blogging site, there are several ways to earn a passive income by selling physical products. Probably one of the best known ways is by selling your old junk on eBay. But even if you don’t have anything left to sell you can start drop shopping. This is where you sell products for a company on eBay or Amazon and they’ll take care of the rest - including shipping.
You can also launch your own eCommerce store by using Shopify. They literally give you everything you need to sell products online from a complete online shop to including buy buttons on your social media channels.
8. Invest in stocks or shares.
When you invest in stocks you become a stakeholder. That entitles you to a share of their profits. Investing in stocks has been a popular way to earn a passive income for years, and thanks to the internet, it’s easier than ever to research and invest in stocks on your own.
Running low on cash and inspiration? Have a gander at our weird, wonderful and lucrative startup suggestions for business you can run from your dorm!Stuffed monkey starting a business
Credit: Alan Cleaver – Flickr
We’re not saying that running a business from the comfort of your home is a walk in the park but it is possible, and that’s enough to start talking about the options pronto!
If starting a small business sounds like it’ll take up too much of your precious time, head over to our quick-fix cash injection guide for ideas on how to make money pronto.
However, if you have a bit of entrepreneurial spirit in you, these ideas should get your juices flowing and set you off on your merry way to small-business success.
Enough monkeying around: let’s get to it!
Nail that big business idea
Do some research: what do people need or want? Think of an everyday obstacle you’re met with – how can it be overcome?
If you could provide or invent something that would make life easier, better, safer, fairer or cheaper – what would it be?
What are you really good at or love doing? Perhaps start with that!
Think about what ventures might support your degree course or future ideal career.
50 startup ideas
Credit: Joe Goldberg – Flickr
Upcycle and sell on free stuff you’ve found in charity shops, on Gumtree and on Freecycle
Start a blog. Make your uni ramblings as engaging and insightful as you can (it helps to provide a few laughs and be opinionated). Once you have a good following, you can start hosting ads on your site for payment, or even write advertorials for brands (this basically involves you writing about a company for payment) – read our guide to making money as a blogger for more deets.
Similarly, you can earn money from YouTube videos by sharing a slice of the ad revenue. It could be reviews or guides related to your course subject, or pick any topic that really fascinates you (games, comedy and music do particularly well). You can run some ads and often blag freebies, and further down the line you could even stream pay-per-view vids if you get enough subscribers
Buy second-hand in-demand textbooks at the end of term and sell them on to new students at the start of the new term (worth double checking that the same textbooks will be used again the following term, otherwise you could be left with a lot of useless material!)
Cash in on your creativity by selling a design, a piece of music, a recipe, or whatever your speciality is on a site like Gumroad
Become an ’emergency key holder’: offer a base package that lets people keep a spare key with you that they can collect if they lose their own. We all know how easy it is to get into a pickle with this! You can add sliding fees if they want you to deliver or for unsociable hours
Start a magazine about your uni subject and get other students, tutors and guest experts to write for it too. You could charge local businesses to advertise – the money might not start rolling in instantly but it’s a good project to invest in and will look great on your CV
Set yourself an unusual goal – like living on a yacht for a year or surviving on a tenner a week – and blog or write a book about it. You’ve got a good chance of featuring in the papers too (and could charge so cash for images!)
Rent out your student room or house over the summer months on Airbnb
Run a ‘you want it, I’ll get it’ delivery service. Evenings and weekends could see you delivering McDonald’s/beer combos, while early mornings could be coffees, newspapers or train tickets. Or just see what everyday things people run out of and buy in bulk (midnight loo roll’s got to be a winner, right?)
empty loo roll
Credit: GorillaSushi – Flickr
Create an alternative yearbook using a print-on-demand publisher and sell copies and advertising space
Start a film screening club (or stick with the ever-popular student club night)
‘I queue for you’: stand in-line or hang on the phone so someone else doesn’t have to
Convert someone’s entire CD catalogue into MP3 files they can play on their phone. It’s easy enough to do using software like iTunes but can take hours… which is where you come in!
Start an accommodation reviews site for your campus or town
Set up a Skype language course or conversational practice for learners around the world
Buy packets of seeds cheaply and sell pot plants or fresh fruit/veg. You can grow lots of things without tons of equipment – some veg will even thrive in old wellies or grown indoors. Just keep it legal!
Lend a hand to the local elderly by offering to do their grocery shopping online for them on the premise that you can claim cashback
Make and sell audio or e-book versions of out-of-copyright set texts, particularly if they’re hard to find (think medieval literature or 18th-century science tomes)
Be the go-to finder for folk who’ve lost something irreplaceable or want to buy something hard to find. Use the web as well as local contacts and retail knowledge to track down the impossible… for a commission
Freelance: Whether it’s related to your current course or your dream career, offer your skills to peeps who need web design, illustration, writing or admin support. You’ll also get CV-pimping experience to bootcat computer freelance
Create food hampers that parents can order and have delivered to their kids – think student essentials in long-life eats or healthy stuff they’re probably not getting enough of
Run a couple of matchmaker events for your campus and charge a small joining fee
Make bespoke photo albums: use a site like Lulu.com to produce professionally printed books or magazines and add hand-crafted touches or notes to make each one unique
Offer a transcription service that types up lecture recordings, or use your graphic design skills to produce handouts for tutors
Create a swaps site that matches owners with lenders: think clothes, services, bikes or books – or maybe one that matches students who want to see the UK with those who live in other towns
Organise student event trips to other cities or to visit festivals – get a good deal on a coach and double your money on the tickets
Design an app that lets students vent about their course or campus anonymously and compare experiences around the world
Offer to sit for stock photographers or source models for them. Or just grab a camera and have a go at shooting and selling your own snaps. Try newcomer Picfair, which allows you set your own pricesdropout-fb
Produce a campus e-newsletter and take paid advertising from local businesses, or do deals to offer readers discounts and competitions
Start an annual gift or card service where you select and post cards and presents so subscribers so they never forget important birthdays or anniversaries
Be a market research consultant and sell your services to local or national businesses who want to know what students think about their stuff
Pay a flat rate to a freelance graphic designer to create popular web graphics or icons, and sell them on a marketplace like GraphicRiver for recurring income
If there’s one thing we all seem to have lurking in a spare bedroom, it’s unused home gym equipment and a pile of good intentions. Buy or beg the kit at bargain rates to re-sell or re-home with local schools, gyms, offices or personal trainers
Offer to collect or wait for deliveries for a fee (saving someone else the time or cost of rearranging a missed package)
Create a portfolio website that bands and musicians can use to connect with local events or businesses
Start a home-made smoothie or sandwich business for local firms: they phone you their orders in the morning and you deliver on the dot at lunchtimefood as small business idea
Credit: Hdx Cafe – Flickr
Turn your best photos or artwork into posters (good sellers at the start of term as students move into new homes) – check out Truprint
Start an essay or thesis proofreading business
Create a local guide – think magazine, website or app – that helps freshers make the most of their new town: the best cafés, cheapest deals, or hidden gems. You can sell these on and even ask businesses to pay a small fee to be included
Start your own travel exchange: put together packages of budget flights, accommodation and events and co-ordinate it between a uni abroad and your own
Sell a uni essentials welcome package – stationery, kitchen kit, discount vouchers – that can be delivered to freshers’ rooms ahead of their first day
Start a tutoring service for school students struggling with the subjects you’re acing at. Offer online courses or webinars to reach more folk
Be a sports coach for local or uni teams
Collect other students dirty laundry and take it to the launderette for a markup
Design a motivational app that logs lecture/seminar/gym attendance and awards points, vouchers or gifts for achievements or penalties for slacking
Start an outdoor fitness trail on MeetUp.com, leading groups of people to different/unusual locations to work out without equipment while seeing the sights
Offer a CV design or review service. Check out our guide to CV writing for a bit of inspo
Design cases that disguise gadgets and make them less attractive to thieves. Think phone covers that look like pencil cases, or a laptop case that looks like a ring-binder. Recycled materials get you bonus points!
Run your own subscription service where customers get a study survival kit delivered to them at their homes or libraries during high stress periods – think Berocca, teabags, de-stress scented candles, cans of redbull, etc.
The golden rules
Dog with keep off the grass sign
Credit: Tim Simpson – Flickr
Keep your stellar start-up ideas on track with some common sense:
Don’t do anything illegal
Don’t compromise anyone’s safety to make a buck
Don’t skimp on your studies in favour or making some cash
Check any rules your uni/insurance provider might have about running a business
Get the tax facts and know where you stand
Make sure you sound-out any rules about plagiarism if you intend to sell your notes or essays
Check whether you need a licence, insurance or qualification to put any of your ideas into action before you move forward
Don’t just think in terms of the money – going for ideas that help your community or local charities can do just as much for your CV or personal satisfaction.
Everyone has great ideas, but very few actually turn their dreams into concrete reality. Whether you’ve got a world-changing concept or just want to make some extra cash, you’ve got to make a start before you can have a startup.
Good luck, and let us know how you get on with your big venture! If you think we’ve missed any tricks with this list, fill us in using the comments section below
1.No-risk matched betting
free bets from matched bettingHands down the quickest way to make a lot of money (well, without breaking the law). Lots of students have genuinely made £100s from this technique. It’s completely legal, risk free, tax free, and anyone can do it.
It works by taking advantage of free bets regularly offered by betting sites through ‘matching’ them at a betting exchange. Matched betting eliminates the risk (you are betting both for and against a certain outcome).
This leaves you being able to squeeze out the free bet, which can be as much as £200! Multiply this by how many betting sites there are and you can quite easily come away with a profit of a few hundred pounds.
Owen walks you through how to make your first £15 profit (using a real life example) in this gem of a guide to matched betting. If you know of any better way to make £30/hr sitting at home, please let us know!
Credit: Julio Marquez – Flickr.com
An increasingly popular way for students to make money is to fill out online surveys in their spare time. Research companies are always recruiting new members to answer surveys and test new products.
For a few minutes of form filling, you can make a couple of quid which is paid as cash or rewards. You can bag up to £3 ($5) for some surveys!
A few good ones to try are: Toluna, Vivatic, OnePoll, MySurvey, SurveyBods, Valued Opinions, The Opinion Panel, YouGov, PopulusLive, Global Test Market, Pinecone, IPSOS, Hiving, PanelBase, MintVine, Opinion Outpost, Mingle, Harris Poll, Mind Mover, New Vista, iPoll.
Also sign up for Swagbucks which rewards you for surveys as well as simply surfing the web, watching videos and playing games.
Update: See our new full guide to the best paid online surveys!
Paid for searching the web
Interested in earning cash for doing what you already do online? This has to be one of the easiest methods of making money online without really any effort or change in your behavior.
This innovative idea by Qmee.com rewards you for searching in Google, Bing or Yahoo. You just install a simple add-on to your browser and when you conduct a search there may be a few sponsored results alongside your normal search.
qmee paid searchEach Qmee result has a cash reward attached – if you are interested in it simply click on it and collect your reward.
The best thing is there is no minimum to cashout – our first one was just 72p wired to our Paypal account. You also have the option to donate it to charity.
Sign up now for free and start earning from your own searches! Click here to start.
Online market trading
The historically hard-to-break world of investing in stock markets and currencies has been cracked wide open. Today there is no need to be a fat cat or fund the yachts of Wolf of Wall Street style stock brokers. You can do it all yourself with the help of online market trading platforms.
Having spent many hours researching this new opportunity, I’ve been experimenting with the two biggest platforms: Plus500 and eToro.com.
Both offer free practice accounts, and Plus500 also give you a free £20 (without depositing, terms apply) for their CFD service which is worth taking up. Overall I prefer eToro with over 4.5 million users worldwide. It was recently featured in the BBC 2 documentary “Traders: Millions by the Minute” and the Financial Times.
etoro tradingOne of the best things on eToro is the CopyTrader feature. This lets you literally see, follow and copy the investments of other top performing traders.
Follow George’s complete guide to trading on eToro to learn more. I think $200 is a good amount to get the most out of the learning curve by trying out a few different markets. If nothing else you’ll learn a great deal about various investments and industries.
Disclaimer: CFD trading can be volatile and you can lose your entire capital, so don’t throw your life savings into it! Trading CFDs may not be suitable for you. Please ensure you fully understand the risks involved.
Review websites & apps for cash
usertesting.comWell it seems like you’re pretty nifty with a web browser, so perhaps it’s time to turn pro and browse websites as a paid and fun job!
Introducing UserTesting.com – a new platform that pays everyday people to review all kinds of websites. Each review takes around 20 minutes and bags you $10 (£6.50) via Paypal.
Simply sign up here, complete a test review and look forward to receiving websites in your inbox.
The ‘Disney Vault’ secret
disney vaultTo keep demand high across generations, Disney Studios carefully restrict the supply of some home release classics. They are locked away in the ‘vault’ for 8-10 years before being released for a short unspecified time.
Buy them in this window at normal retail price and you can turn a nice profit when they go off sale for another decade or so.
For example, in 2011 you could buy Beauty and the Beast on Blu-ray 3D for just £24.99. In just a couple of years it was on Amazon for a staggering £74.99!Disney vaultImportantly, not all Disney releases are subject to the vault and only the true classics will maintain such demand.
Right now there are just 2 titles out of the vault which I would recommend snapping up. They are Bambi Diamond Edition Blu-ray and Cinderella Diamond Edition Blu-ray.
‘Get Paid To’ sites
50 poundsSimilar to making money from online surveys, GPT sites reward you in cash and vouchers for completing various offers or activities online.
The most popular sites today are Toluna, Swagbucks and InboxPounds.
Exciting update! We’ll soon be launching our own GPT service for our readers. Invites will be limited and UK only, please join our mailing list if you’re interested in hearing once it’s live:
Start your own website
mark zuckerberg facebookIf you’ve ever seen the film The Social Network then you’ve most likely had your brain spinning as to what website you can start-up to make you billions.
And of course there are lots of stories out there about successful students who have started a site while at university, or even bought a domain name and later sold it for £1000s.
In fact, Save the Student is one such example of a website started at university by Owen Burek in his first year, which has since grown into a full-time and successful enterprise.
Read Owen’s 4-step guide to setting up a website or this guide to making money as a blogger if you’re interested in finding out more. It’s really not that difficult to get started and there are plenty of opportunities to make money online.
Write and publish a Kindle eBook
If students are good at anything, it’s researching and writing. With the Amazon Kindle store, anyone can publish an eBook and make money.
And the Kindle app is now available on almost any device (laptops, iPads, smartphones and yes, Kindles) so your global market is huge!
List your book for £1.49 – £6.99 and you earn 70% of the sale. Considering Amazon is the ultimate selling machine (and remember people are looking to spend), that is a fantastic deal.
kindle ebooksThe key to success with eBooks is to create value, and write non-fiction. Simply bundling information you have researched and complied on a common problem (eg. ‘secrets’ to finding a job) and then presenting it in an easy to digest format (an eBook) justifies someone spending a few quid on it.
Another big tip is to have a great cover designed so it stands out, and once your book is live on the Kindle store it’s really important to get some reviews so it shows up higher in results. Encourage readers to leave an honest review at the end of your book.
The best thing about this lucrative idea is that once you’ve invested the time (say 20 hours), you’ll earn a passive income for years to come! For a step-by-step guide to publishing and earning with eBooks, see “How to write a nonfiction eBook in 21 days“.
If you’ve got a good presence on social media or perhaps you even have a blog or website, you can start bringing in money immediately by promoting all sorts of companies, products, services and offers online.
Affiliate Window logoSign up to an affiliate network such as Affiliate Window, check their offers blog or browse the merchant listings to find something you think your friends would be interested in, grab your affiliate link and share it. If someone buys (can be within up to 90 days) using your link you’ll make a nice commission.
To take it a step further, set up a website (read our guide) or a topical Facebook page and invite all your friends to join it and post your affiliate offers on there.
Mobile phone recycling
Credit: CannedTuna – Flickr.com
See how much you can get for your old mobile phone using our in-house mobile phone price comparison tool! Maybe ask your parents if they have any lying around too.
You can get some good money and help the environment by recycling mobile phones with certain companies listed on the comparison tool. But be aware: you won’t always get the quoted cash since it depends on ‘condition’. We recommend Mobile Cash Mate for the fairest and highest payouts in most cases (they sent us a £203 cheque for an iPhone 5).
Become a ‘Clickworker’
The Clickworker.com concept is based on ‘internet crowd-sourcing’ where businesses advertise specific, scalable tasks they need completing quickly. And for us, it’s an easy way to make fast cash from our couch.
There are a variety of tasks, but most commonly they involve mindless data entry, web research or form filling. You are rewarded and paid in cash (via Paypal) for the work you do, and you can choose for what and when you work. Give it a go. [If you’re US based, also try Amazon’s ‘Mechanical Turk‘].
Claim tax back
Many students work part-time or during the summer months, and others will be on placements or paid internships. More often than not, if you are a student working during the year, you will be overpaying income tax.
Why? Simply because few students reach the personal tax-free income allowance each year but are put on an emergency basic tax-code by their employers meaning tax is being paid when it shouldn’t be.
Click to use the Tax refund calculatorUse our student tax-back service to help you reclaim any tax you should not have paid. Just enter your details in the calculator here to work out what you may be owed. Otherwise for more information read our guide on claiming tax back here.
Get cashback when shopping
Our Quidco Cashback
I earned this much in 2 years
This is not only a way to make money but also to save money as a student. If you look at it in a different way then you are making money with every purchase you would have made anyway, whether it be 10% or 0.5% cashback.
There are a number of cashback sites out there which pay you the commission they otherwise would have earned.
We recommend signing up with Top Cashback, Quidco.com & Swagbucks which are free and offer the best selection of retailers and exclusives.
A part-time job
bar jobsA part-time job is the obvious first choice, opted for by most students looking to supplement their student loan. It provides a pretty steady flow of income and can enable you to gain valuable work experience.
However, depending on where you live, jobs are not always easy to find. Check local classifieds, our student job search, student job websites and your university careers service for vacancies.
It’s also worth signing up with the Graduate Recruitment Bureau, a free service which will match you with both part-time jobs or graduate opportunities.
Read our guide to finding a part-time job whilst studying for more tips.
Gigs on Fiverr
Fiverr pranksFiverr is now the world’s largest marketplace for people to make money selling small services (known as ‘gigs’).
What you offer could be absolutely anything, from writing and translating, social media posting, playing pranks and teaching to creating music, voiceovers and short video clips for people all around the world!
The default price is $5 (hence Fiverr..), but you can attach extra services to gigs for more money. Whilst it might not seem like much, it can quickly add up and there are plenty of examples of people making a really good living from the site. The key is to get a system in place which minimises the time spent on each gig.
But there is another way to profit even more from Fiverr for potentially far less work. How? By simply reselling gigs elsewhere. For example, find a decent logo designer then reply to jobs on Upwork or even local classifieds. A $5 spend can easily become $50+, and it’s repeatable!
If you’re not interested in selling at all there’s SO much good stuff you can get done for yourself. Have a browse and get inspired!
Review music for money
If you love music, make it your business by reviewing unsigned bands and artists online for cash with Slicethepie.
It can take a while to build up your reputation but some users of the site have said that they earn £40 a month. This may not sound like much, but if it’s something you enjoy then it shouldn’t be hard work and is another thing for your CV. Money you earn will be in $US but anyone can sign up and review.
slicethepieTo get started, head over to Slicethepie now or read our quick guide for more info.
Sell your notes
sell your notesIf you don’t mind sharing your notes with other students it’s a great way to generate a little extra cash. There are sites out there that you can upload your notes to, along with your price, and then when another student downloads them you get paid.
Most of these sites like Stuvia & Notesale are free for you to list your notes but tend to take a cut of your profit in order to handle the marketing etc so that you don’t have to go out there and promote your notes yourself.
You will most likely have to upload PDFs but it’s worth it for the return and you can submit handwritten notes but you’re likely to make more money if they’re typed up.
Sell second-hand course books
One great way to make money is to buy other students’ text books at the end of the year, and then sell them just after freshers’ week – when the new intake of students know that they need them!
You can either advertise on campus or list them online very easily on Amazon.co.uk Marketplace (just bear in mind they take a commission on books sold).
For more tips on selling items online click here.
Entering competitions of course comes with no guarantees, but there is a growing community of so-called ‘compers’ in the UK consistently making up to £50,000 a year through all sorts of competitions.
Types of competitions available to enter range from simple registration forms and Facebook page liking to answering questions correctly over the phone to being a TV game show contestant. Imagine you made it onto Deal or No Deal instead of just watching it!
Start by entering our very own monthly student competition (Like our Facebook page to see when our next one is)!
competitionsThen head to our active competitions page to enter other free competitions that we have found. Just note that some of these sites may send you spam so use an alias email address and opt-out of as many of the offers as possible.
For loads more tips on achieving success and making money from competitions, read our guide to entering competitions.
Buy and sell domain names
domain-for-saleA domain name is just a website address (eg. ‘savethestudent.org’ or ‘mysite.co.uk’) and there are lots of extensions (.com, .net, .co.uk etc).
They cost as little as £1.99 to register with 123-reg.co.uk or GoDaddy.com yet premium domain names can fetch £1,000s if not millions when sold on. In 2007 VacationRentals.com went for a cool $35m!
Now you’re probably not going to come across anything like that, but you can still turn a quick profit with a bit of searching. The trick is to find available domain names which have some commercial value, snap them up and then list them for sale on a site like Sedo.com.
Be A Mystery Shopper, Its Easy!Today becoming a mystery shopper is easier than you think and you can get rewarded handsomely.
We’ve recently come across a really fun smartphone app called Roamler that pays you in cash for completing various tasks in your local area. So definitely check that out first!
More traditionally, there are plenty of agencies that pay you to visit all sorts of shops to feedback on how they are performing. For more info on where to apply see our guide to becoming a mystery shopper.
Be an extra
Do you fancy yourself as a budding young actor or just that person that walks past in the background shot of an episode of Eastenders? It could be you if you apply to be an extra.
The pay isn’t bad either – £60-80 a day on average, and you hardly have to do anything!
You can apply at Be On Screen for a number of opportunities or 2020 casting is another agency (just know they take a cut from your earnings).
Sell all your old CDs, games and movies
cds and dvdsIf you are looking to make a very quick buck, then selling your old bits and bobs that are cluttering up your room is a good idea.
The best thing about it is that you can rip all the songs and films onto your laptop or external hard drive before selling them. This means that you are only really selling the plastic and artwork!
You can earn anything from 10p to £20 per item, and the earnings can really add up if you have a large collection. Whilst you’re at it, see if your parents have any ‘clutter’ they’d be happy to see the back of.
You can also sell almost anything for free on Amazon Marketplace or Preloved and sites like MusicMagpie will pay you instantly for sending in unwanted items.
For more tips and places to sell check out our guide on selling DVDs, CDs and games.
Sell on your education!
Become a tutor to local GCSE or A-level students (find out more about tutoring here). There are now a few online tutor sites too, so you can go also global without too much hassle.
graduate_studentYou may feel as if you aren’t qualified to be a tutor, but seeing as you are at university you will most likely have the qualifications to tutor for GCSE or even A-Level. Some parents may feel that their child will react better to a younger tutor, and it can be great experience, so why not give it a go?
You can advertise on SchoolsTrader or sign up with UK Tutors. You can expect to earn around £10 an hour. However, make sure you don’t have to do too much tutoring around your exams!
Sell your photos
If you think you’ve got a good shot and a little creativity, try uploading your photographs for free to stock websites. A good starting point is Fotolia or istockphoto.
Make more money selling photo subjects that people are demanding, and there’s a great resource to find this out here. It might be a good idea to test them out in print first yourself (get free photo prints here).
Rent out your car parking space
saving petrol and saving moneySome student accommodation comes with a drive or garage. If you aren’t using your parking space and you live in a busy area then you might be in luck. There are plenty of people that may work in the city centre and are fed up of paying through the roof for daily parking.
Advertise your space on Gumtree, Parklet or Just Park.
Or, check out our full guide to renting out your parking space.
Become your own bank
be your own bank‘Peer-to-peer’ lending is the future of banking. It cuts out the middle-man, passing on higher interest rates to you and cheaper loans to borrowers. And it’s all managed online from the comfort of your sofa.
Founded in 2005, Zopa.com is the most established site lending around £1m every day. Right now you can expect to achieve up to 5% fixed return (before tax), depending on how long you choose to lend for.
As with any traditional bank, there is some risk attached with peer-to-peer lending. Zopa have gone a long way to mitigating this with their Safeguard feature, which effectively spreads your money across a wide range of borrowers (who are also credit checked).
Work as a charity collector
Ok so this job takes a certain kind of person, as you’ll have to take a lot of rejection and be persistent.
But if you are bubbly, personable and reckon you could sell ice to an Eskimo then this could actually be a great student money making idea. You get paid commission on new sign ups (typically around £20).
Have a look at Wesser as well as charity websites like Oxfam.
messy kidIt’s a classic money-maker, and for good reason. You get paid (well) to watch TV and not very much else!
Be warned that you will need a CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) check to look after small children, even though some parents may not ask for one. If you are wondering what to charge, look at local Gumtree ads, but you can expect to be paid over £8ph even if you aren’t trained in child care.
Aside from advertising yourself, you might want to try creating a profile on Findababysitter.com. It really is easy money (unless you get stuck with the child from hell!).
Dog walking & sitting
If babies ain’t your thing, then maybe canines are… looking after other people’s dogs is big business. Just think that as a student you’re likely to have free time during the day when others are out at work and worried about their pets at home.
You could bag around £7 per dog for an hour walk, and it’s also a great way to keep fit. Join Tailster who will match you up with dog owners. Alternatively advertise your services locally with fliers or on classified websites such as Gumtree.
Rent out your house for filming
filmreelDirectors for TV and film are always on the hunt for houses to film in. For instance, a scene for Coronation Street was recently filmed in the student house one of the Save the Student editors used to live in!
Not only can you make good money but it’s crazy seeing your own place on TV. Start out by looking at this site.
Rent out your body
student thinkingAccording to our recent survey, 7% of students use their body in some way to make a buck.
If you are comfortable taking off your kit then why not try life modelling. Sit there in the buff while budding artists capture your every curve (or pokey bits) in frightening detail! Try RAM, a website especially designed for these kind of jobs.
You could also get involved in clinical drug trials, but be sure you fully appreciate any risks attached.
Warning: Do not do anything you are not comfortable with, no matter how desperate you are for money! There has been an unhealthy rise in student prostitution in recent years – do not fall victim to it!
Perhaps you enjoy writing, managing Facebook pages or doing a little bit of graphic design in your spare time. There are so many freelance jobs out there that require simple skills or just time that someone else might not have.
And the best thing about freelancing is that you can work for clients in the UK and around the world with just an internet connection from home, to your own hours whilst developing valuable skills.
A great place to start is with the leading freelance site Upwork.com. Or try using our student job search to find freelance jobs closer to home.
Busking studentIf you can sing or dance then this is your time to shine baby! Did you know that Justin Bieber started off busking? That’s right, with a little work you can be as annoying as him.
There are really no tips for this except choose a good spot with high footfall, make sure you are good and play your heart out. Some buskers in the past have been known to make upwards of £20 hour.
Sell clothes on eBay
ebay-logoEveryone’s best friend when it comes to getting rid of junk is eBay. Online auctions are a sure-fire way to turn that sleeveless jacket (which came in and out of fashion in a week) into hard cash.
Some eBay sellers look at trends and try to predict what will be big ahead of the market. If you are good and don’t mind taking a risk then you can buy early in bulk and sell on when the craze hits.
For lots more tips on selling on eBay read this guide.
Sell your stories and videos
If you have an interesting story then you could try selling it to the papers. It could be anything from sleeping with a professional footballer to getting caught in a clothes horse!
One of the Save the Student team was unfortunate enough to have a pigeon fly through and smash their window at university and sold the story to The Sun for a tidy £50.
You could also film your mates at all times and send it into You’ve Been Framed to net yourself £250 and a few seconds of fame.
According to recent stats we now watch more videos on YouTube than searches on Google. And with the recently introduced YouTube Partner Program you can now profit from making and uploading videos. You will receive a percentage of the advertising revenue collected per 1,000 views.
Depending on how successful you are (virality, subscriber base and topic) you can make a lot of money, and there are plenty of stories every week of more and more YouTubers making it their career.
For more tips read our guide to making money from YouTube.
the business of the 21st centuryAlso known as Multi-Level Marketing (MLM), this is a business model that allows you to generate ongoing income in two ways: by making a commission selling products and by recruiting other members who go on to sell. The later allows you to make money from the sales made by those you have recruited.
Importantly, this is not a pyramid scheme (they are illegal) because there is an end goal which involves a customer buying a product or service of value.
It’s also not a ‘get rich quick’ scheme. You will have to work I’m afraid! However with the growth of social media, network marketing is becoming easier and lots of people are now making a decent living from it.
This is a serious way of making good money on your own terms and it’s well worth reading up on it. I recommend getting “The Business of the 21st Century” by Robert Kiyosaki.
Source property for wealthy investors
contents insuranceWe all know how much money there is in property, but on the surface (with house prices as high as they are) you might be thinking this market is off-limits.
Truth is, lots of people make a great deal of cash simply sourcing suitable properties for wealthy investors who simply have no time.
The trick is to find properties below market value (BMV) by avoiding estate agents and instead flyering your area with your contact details offering to buy houses. Then approach investors with a no-brainer offer to pass on the details of cut-price property in exchange for a % of the sale value.
Most cities will have monthly networking events for landlords and property investors. Track these down, sign up, put on your best suit and go along with lots of business cards. Or you could start on LinkedIn or even Twitter to build some initial contacts.
As you might imagine, this isn’t necessarily a quick way to make money but once you’ve got a few investors in your phone book it can prove to be very lucrative in the long run. If you’re interested, I recommend reading this book.
There are many other creative ways to make money as a student, such as our 50 business ideas. With any luck you’ll be on the road to making millions! Please feel free to share your own ideas by leaving a comment
How many articles are there about making money online? Thousands? Millions? Enough? Probably. But there’s a problem. Too many of them are just sales pitches to convince you to sign up for some seminar, webinar, training session or some other way to become an online millionaire.
They really give online money making a bad name. But it is possible to make money online. I mean, the people selling all of those millionaire pitches are making money, right?
There are legitimate ways to make money online. The problem is that the real ways to make money aren’t “get rich quick” schemes.
Most of them require a lot of work and sometimes a lot of dedication before seeing a return on your time. But if you really want to make money online, work from home or turn an idea into a business, you can do it. You can even earn money with apps if you don’t want to venture all the way to the computer.
I’m going to tell you about all kinds of legitimate ways to make money online. Since we are talking about legitimate jobs, you’ve got to be…well, legitimate. Many of these options are real jobs that require you to put in hours if you want to get paid. They also require real work. Here are some tips for actually getting the job:
Take it seriously. Yes, you’re applying for an online job. Yes, you can do the work in your underwear, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a “real job”. You must treat it as such or they aren’t going to treat you as a serious candidate. You aren’t the only one who wants to work in their underwear. In fact, the competition online is likely higher than it is in your local area.
Be professional. When you submit a résumé, don’t type it in ALL CAPS and please don’t avoid the caps lock like the plague. Know how to use it without looking incompetent. Write in complete sentences with proper grammar. Of course, there will be exceptions, but even with the exceptions, you must keep it professional. You’re building their view of you.
Give some, but not all. Whether you’re providing writing samples, a photography portfolio or links to your work, give them enough examples to get the idea, but not so many that they don’t even know where to start. And while we’re on the topic, give them some of your background information, but don’t tell them your life story.
Double check yourself, before you double wreck yourself. Make sure everything you send to a company, whether a résumé, an email or a portfolio, is good to go. Double check your grammar and wording, and for God’s sake use spell check! This is especially important when it comes to the company’s name. Don’t spell their name wrong and be sure to type it how they type it (e.g. Problogger, not Pro Blogger).
1. Websites That Pay
Let’s go ahead and get this out of the way. There are all kinds of websites that will pay you for various things, such as shopping, taking surveys or testing products. No, I’m not getting paid to promote any of these and no, these websites won’t make you a millionaire, but they are great for earning some extra cash. I’ll leave out the scams.
Here are some legitimate websites that pay:
Swagbucks – Swagbucks is great for earning some extra cash. You can do a variety of things to make money, from taking surveys to using their search engine. You won’t get rich, but you will earn a few bucks. If you have the time to kill, you can spend it earning some extra cash, instead of surfing the web.
InboxDollars – InboxDollars is similar to Swagbucks, since you’re going to be taking surveys, shopping, etc., so if you want to maximize your return, sign up with both websites. They also offer a search engine that pays you (like Swagbucks) and you get $5 just for signing up. I won’t continue to list survey sites one after another down the list, but if you want to get paid to take surveys, also check out GlobalTestMarket, E-Poll Surveys and Survey Club.
Project Payday – Project Payday is one of those sites that has testimonials of people who have earned thousands of dollars by getting paid to get trial offers. I’m not saying you’ll earn thousands, but it is legit and you can earn some extra cash. They assume that by paying you to do a free trial, you’ll either like the product and purchase it, or forget to cancel the trial and get charged for it. If you can keep track and cancel before you get charged (if you don’t want the product), then this is a great site for making some money.
User Testing – User Testing pays $10 a pop for testing websites. A test usually takes about 15-20 minutes. The purpose is for a website owner to watch someone, who is new to their site, try to navigate it. The value that the site owner gets by watching an actual user experience is worth a ton, but $10 isn’t a bad pay-out.
Fiverr – Fiverr is a great place to make a few bucks or spend a few bucks if you need some of the services people offer. Basically, everything is $5. You either pay $5 or charge $5. They call them “gigs.” You can offer your services however you choose. If you sell art and you’re fine selling pieces for $5 each, that’s a gig. If you’re a graphic designer and you want to offer your services for $10/hour, simply offer a 30 minute gig. If they need two hours of graphic design, they pay you $20, or $10/hour by buying four gigs.
IZEA – IZEA works in addition to a blog or on its own. You get paid to blog, tweet, take photos and take videos. The pay is mostly based on your following, so if you want to make money with your tweets, you’ll need to grow you Twitter following. Likewise, if you want to make money with blogs, you’ll need substantial blog traffic (more on blogging below).
2. Freelance Writing
Freelance writing is one of the most popular ways to earn money online. Many successful freelancers can earn an average of 50 cents to a dollar per word. Some are earning twice that!
Of course, it doesn’t start out like that. You’ve got to build your portfolio and your résumé, blah blah blah. If you’re interested in writing, I’m sure you know this. If you’re not interested in writing, I wouldn’t recommend traveling down this road just for the money.
It takes dedication and time, though it can be highly profitable if it’s what you love. Assuming it is what you love, let’s talk about making money with it.
Before you decide to start reaching out to all of these freelance writing companies, you need to have a web presence. You need a blog (in my humble blogger opinion, of course).
Or you could just have an online portfolio. Even a LinkedIn profile works to get started. When you’re ready to start, here are 150 resources to help you write better, faster and more persuasively.
If that’s intimidating, just start with these 50 resources.
Now for what you’ve all been waiting for; once you’re ready to actually start making money, here are 10 websites you can start with:
Listverse – Listverse pays $100 for each accepted post. The article must be a list, it must be at least 1,500 words and you must include at least 10 things. Other than that, you can get pretty creative with it.
TopTenz – TopTenz pays $50 for each accepted post. Again, the article has to be in a list format and it must be at least 1,500 words, with few exceptions. They post often so your chances of getting accepted are fairly high.
A List Apart – A List Apart pays $200 for each accepted post. They’re not first on the list, because they tend to publish less articles, which means you have a smaller chance of getting accepted. Same guidelines as above, 1,500 word minimum.
International Living – International Living pays $75 for each accepted post. They are mostly looking for travel experiences from countries you have visited. For this site, it’s more about your experience than your writing ability.
FundsforWriters – FundsforWriters pays $50 for each accepted post. They are looking for articles about writing and making money with it. They only accept articles between 500-600 words, but they want you to make each word count.
Uxbooth – Uxbooth pays $100 for each accepted post. They do tend to take four to eight weeks to accept and post articles, so don’t count on this being a quick money maker. They take so long, because they pair with editors to only publish amazing content.
iWriter – iWriter pays up to $15 for each accepted post. That may seem small, but they aren’t as strict as many of the others above and they also allow you to pick exactly what you write. You can write as many or as few articles as you want.
Textbroker – Textbroker pays up to five cents per word, if you’re a 5-star writer. You’ll start by submitting a short sample article and you will most likely start as a 3-star writer, but you can work your way up by writing more and writing great content.
Matador Network – Matador Network pays up to $60 for each accepted post, but standard pay is around $20-$25. They don’t really focus on a minimum word count, but they have a maximum count of 1,500 words.
The Penny Hoarder – The Penny Hoarder pays up to $800 (rarely), depending upon the number of page views you receive. The pay starts at $100 for 50,000 page views, so this isn’t a guaranteed paid article, but it can potentially be highly rewarding.
There’s no doubt that you can make money with freelance writing, but it’s a process. Once you start building your portfolio and your writing skills, you can start making some serious money. If you’re not an experienced writer, expect to put some time in before you really start to see some dough.
3. Sell Your Stuff
Ever since the idea of online auctions came into existence, the online selling market has been on the rise. Many are interested, but don’t know how to get started. There are still all kinds of ways to make money by selling online, whether you’re selling what you already have or buying and selling like a store. Before we get started, here are a few general tips when selling anything online:
Get a PayPal account. If you don’t have a PayPal account, you’ll want to get one if you’re doing business online. It’s the standard in online business for receiving payment and paying others.
Take good pictures. Some of the options below don’t require you to actually take the picture and sell the product, but for the ones that do, make sure you take a clear picture that makes your product stand out from the others. If you’re going to be taking a lot of pictures, set up a small “studio-like” area in your home with a backdrop and proper lighting to really make your pictures come across as professional. And of course, you’ll want a good camera too.
Be honest. If you’re selling used items, be honest about every dent, scratch, blemish, etc.. This will reduce many issues you could run into and keep your reviews positive.
Do good business. Plain and simple. Whether you’re selling on a small site or opening an online store, your customer service matters. You’ll want to get those positive reviews and make a good name for yourself. Respond to questions, concerns and complaints. Offer a guarantee if available.
Follow those guidelines and you will do well in online sales. When you’re ready to start selling, here’s where you go:
Amazon – Have you heard of FBA? It stands for “Fulfilled by Amazon” and it’s getting pretty popular. Basically, you buy products (in bulk is best) and ship them to Amazon for them to store. When your products sell, Amazon packs them up, ships them out and sends you the money (after taking their cut). There are people making a full-time living from FBA, while others just do it for some extra money.
CraigsList – Some things don’t ship very well. Other things may make you feel uncomfortable to sell to someone across the country. Anytime you’re selling a large item or something you just don’t want to ship, Craigslist is a great place to go. It’s simple to list your item (again, take good pictures!). If you don’t like the idea of putting your phone number out there, the interested individual can send you a message to your inbox without even getting your email address.
eBay – Of course you can’t read an article about making money online that doesn’t mention eBay. You can start an eBay store and get serious about it or you can just sell some stuff to declutter your home. Either way, I’ve made my fair share from selling on eBay and it’s still a popular way to earn money. If you decide to start an actual eBay store, you’ll want to find a drop-ship business like Doba that will store and ship items straight to your customers so you don’t have to deal with an inventory.
Etsy – If you like to create arts and crafts, you can sell them on Etsy.It’s completely free to open an Etsy store. You simply sign up, post pictures of your creations and starting selling. You can choose your payment option, but PayPal is generally the easiest. Etsy makes it easy to sell and keep track of your inventory. There is a small listing fee and they take 3.5% of every sale you make.
Facebook – Facebook swap shops are great for selling things locally. It’s like CraigsList, but a little easier. You simply search for swap shops in your area and ask to join the group. Once you’re in, take a picture of the item, write a quick description with the price and post it. It doesn’t get much easier than that. You can generally expect to get about what you would get at a yard sale, maybe a little more.
Hey look, an article about making money online that doesn’t mention blogging. . . oh wait, here it is.
First off, I’m a blogger so it seems wrong not to mention it, but more importantly, it’s a legitimate way to make money. It’s quite possibly the least straight-forward way on this list, but it’s very doable and it’s also quite possibly the funnest way on this list. I love blogging and I know hundreds of bloggers who feel the same. So let’s talk about making money blogging and what it really means.
Blogging is something that requires patience, persistence and discipline. It may mean writing everyday for over a year before you really start to see any money from it. There are exceptions to the rule, but from my dealings with other bloggers, it seems to be pretty common to spend one or even two years building your blog, your brand and your authority, before making any serious amount of money.
Some people argue that you can make money without a lot of traffic and while that is true in some circumstances, you will generally need a lot of website traffic to start earning from a blog and that takes a while. Once you’ve reached that point, here are the primary ways to monetize your blog and start earning:
Advertising – This is definitely the most old-school way of earning money with a blog. It’s also starting to become the least common way. You can sell advertising spots directly on your site or you can sign up with a company like Google AdSense or Media.net. Either way, you won’t see a whole lot of money from ads until your views are well into the thousands each day.
Affiliates – There are many affiliate networks, such as FlexOffers and CJ Affiliate that allow you to promote other people’s products and services. You simply put a link or a banner on your page and then you get a percentage if someone clicks through and buys the product/service. You’ll want to select products that are specifically within your blog’s category.This is an effective way to earn money once you have the traffic coming to your blog.
Membership – Many people have created a paid membership area on their blog. This is typically for exclusive content that you can only access in the “member’s area.” If you have a really great idea on what to include, this can be a great idea. You’ll have to create something that can’t easily be accessed around the web.
Products – You can create your own product, such as an ebook or computer software. You would then use your blog as a promotion tool to get people to buy your product. As long as you create a legitimate product with a whole lot of value, you should be able to get some buyers, but like everything else with a blog, you’ll need the traffic to get the sells.
Services – You can offer a paid service, such as life coaching, blog coaching, goal setting or financial planning. Just be sure to investigate all the legal implications and make sure you’re not claiming to be a professional if you’re not one. With a service like this, you’re basically using your blog to sell yourself. You’ll need to convince people that you’re worth buying and then be able to back up your claims once they purchase your service.
Sponsored/paid posts – Many blogs publish sponsored and paid posts. Sponsored posts are basically just posts about a specific brand, product or service. A company will pay you to publish an article about it. It’s similar with other paid posts as well. Your basically selling the spot for the article on your site. If you decide to take this route, you’ll want to build your traffic before you will get many offers.
Subscription – If you think of something valuable (newsletter, online magazine, etc.) that you can consistently offer on a certain basis (weekly, monthly, etc.), you may want to offer a subscription service. This could be a fee charged each time your product is sent out or on a monthly basis. Either way, this has to be something that your customers can only get by subscribing to your website.
Videos – This could be an entire section on it’s own. Many people have made money by creating YouTube videos. Evan of EvanTube is a kid and he has made millions by creating reviews of products that other kids his age would use. It’s not easy to get views into the millions, but once you do, you’ll start seeing some cash come in. Many bloggers have completely turned to videos to get their point across by starting a video blog.
If you’re truly interested in becoming a blogger, start by looking through the archives of ProBlogger, Copyblogger and Boost Blog Traffic. Then go read through all the free guides over at Quick Sprout. It may take you a year to complete those tasks alone, but it will be worth it. You’ll practically have a MBA in blogging.
5. Work-at-Home Companies
Finally, there are some companies that will hire you to work from the comfort of your own home. If you’re interested in working for someone else, while still making your own schedule and deciding where to work from, here are a few companies that will let you do just that:
CrowdSource – CrowdSource offers many types of jobs from “microtask” jobs to larger writing and editing jobs. You decide how much you work and you can do most of it right at your computer.
Demand Studios – Demand Studios is hiring all kinds of creative professionals, from writer to filmmakers. The pay isn’t amazing, but it’s competitive for a work-at-home job.
Fast Chart – Fast Chart allows you to work from home as a medical transcriptionist. There are some requirments and qualifications listed on the page, but if you meet them, you’ll make competitive pay for the industry. You’ll also be able to set your own schedule since you’ll be working from home.
Leap Force – Leap Force is one way that Google rates websites for search engine ranking. If you’re hired, you make decent money (usually over $11/hour), you set your own schedule and it can be pretty fun to view and rank websites.
Liveops – Liveops is a call center that allows you to work from home. Once your set up to take the calls, you can begin making a weekly schedule and working from home. The pay is generally close to $10/hour, but you can earn more with commissions.
SpeakWrite – SpeakWrite will pay you up to $15/hour to transcribe information. You set your own schedule and work from home.
Now you’ve got many different options to start earning online. If you saw something that really interests you, try it out and learn more about it. If you’re really wanting to make a full-time income online, you need to be dedicated to learning how to do what you want to do.