So we’re all here because we want to learn how to make money, right? The trouble is, when you’re researching how to make money online, the same old ideas seem to come up over and over again.
This week I’ve been looking into new ways to earn money online. I tried to find things that you might not have heard of, either because they’re brand new business ideas that didn’t exist until recently, or a little bit out there!
So forget surveys, blogging and selling clutter on eBay.
(All totally legit ways that I personally use to make money online, by the way – but I understand if you’ve heard them before and they don’t do it for you!)
If you want fresh ideas for making extra money, have a look at this list and see if there’s anything to inspire you!
New ways to earn money online
Just a heads up, most of my posts contain affiliate links. That means if you buy something after clicking one of my links I may receive a commission, at no extra cost to you. Thank you for supporting my site!
Subscription box business
Is it just me or are subscription boxes everywhere over the last couple of years?
When I started seeing ads for subscription boxes I thought it was just a fad, but now I think they’re here to stay.
Starting your own subscription box business sounds like a fun, scalable business idea that you can run from home.
One awesome thing about the subscription model is that you will have repeat customers, month after month (as long as you keep them happy!). This cuts down on the time and cost of attracting new customers.
There are subscription boxes for almost everything now. You just need to do a bit of market research and find a niche!
Here are just a few of the popular subscription boxes I’ve seen advertised online:
- Spiritual items (crystals, incense etc)
- Pet supplies
- Self care
- Retro sweets
- Second hand paperbacks
- Children’s activities
- Date night in a box
There are whole sites such as Cratejoy dedicated to subscription boxes that you can use to find customers. You could also find customers by running Facebook ads or even by reaching out to bloggers and influencers.
Cratejoy also has some awesome tutorials and resources to help you get started.
Sell photos from your phone
Nowadays you don’t have to be a professional photographer to make money selling stock photos. You don’t even need professional equipment!
With apps like Foap, you can upload photos direct from your phone. You will get paid every time somebody decides to buy your photo.
You don’t necessarily have to travel a lot or find exotic locations to take pictures of. For example, there is a huge market among bloggers and small businesses for stock photos of workspaces, laptops etc. You can take this sort of picture easily on your phone.
The great thing about selling stock photos is that it can be a source of passive income – meaning, your photos can continue to generate income for you even when you’re not actively working. Months or years from now, somebody could purchase a photo you’ve uploaded and you earn a royalty.
That’s my favourite sort of way to make money!
>> Related post: 5 Popular Hobbies That Make Money
Second Life business
This is the ultimate meta way to make money online. Start an online business within an online business!
Second Life is a virtual reality world where people just… live a second life online.
You can create your own avatar, wander around, chat to people, try different experiences etc. You can also get a job or start a virtual business.
There are various ways to make money on Second Life: you can start a business within the virtual world, trade virtual real estate, create items to sell in the Second Life store (this may require some design skills), or get a job.
The job could be something that uses your real life skills such as teaching or consulting. Or it could be something that you could only try in Second Life – for example, make your avatar a gorgeous woman and you could get paid for a modelling gig!
Within the world of Second Life, people pay for items or services using a virtual currency called Linden dollars (L$). You can actually cash out these virtual L$ for real life money.
Second Life is free to join. It’s not as big as it used to be when it was released several years ago, but it still has a core membership of extremely dedicated followers so there should be still plenty of opportunities to make money.
I haven’t tried the platform out myself but this is one new way to make money that I’m really curious about!
Profitable Facebook group
Facebook has obviously been around for a long while now, but running Facebook groups seems to be a new way to make money that I keep coming across recently.
The key is to find a niche that people are really passionate about. This could be anything from a particular breed of dog to a certain craft, hobby or lifestyle choice.
Facebook can be a great way to build up a loyal, engaged audience with less time and expense than starting a blog or website.
Take the time to build up a group of raving fans by sharing relevant images and information, and giving them a place to discuss the topic. (Here are some tips on building up your group.)
Once you have a loyal fan base, there are various ways you can make money from your group:
One of the most popular is by sharing affiliate links to products that your audience will love. Affiliate links mean that you make a commission on any products sold through your particular tracking link.
Almost every large retailer has an affiliate program to help you promote their goods. For example, Amazon and eBay both have affiliate programs. Clickbank is another affiliate program that has a lot of ebooks and digital products on all kinds of topic.
Another idea would be to create your own merchandise in Redbubble, Teespring or Merch By Amazon and share the links with your group. This could work really well in a niche with a lot of inside jokes or popular phrases.
You can also look for sponsors or advertisers for your group.
This post is an ultimate guide to monetising your Facebook group.
For any gamers out there, you might think it would be a dream come true to get paid to game. But this is a new and growing reality for the many people who make money on Twitch.
Twitch is a platform where you share videos of yourself playing video games.
Now, I’m not a gamer myself but apparently there is a huge audience of people who love to watch other people play games. People can build up a big following on Twitch by showing skill at their games while providing entertaining commentary.
Once you have a following of fans on Twitch, there are a few ways you can make money:
- Share in ad revenue
- Affiliate links
- Selling your own merchandise
This is a modern and new way to make money that I hadn’t heard of until recently but it sounds like a dream job for many people!
This video explains more:
Weird YouTube channels
Ok, you’ve almost certainly heard of YouTuber as a new online career choice that’s sprung up in the last few years. But you might have crossed out this idea based on the stereotype of a YouTube star as someone extroverted and oversharing.
In fact, there are all sorts of YouTube channels that have become popular – and profitable – for the weirdest reasons.
Here are some of the more unusual YouTube genres that have seen success:
- Study with me – watch people studying in real time in silence.
- ASMR – ASMR stands for Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response. It’s a popular genre right now of videos that trigger a physical sensory response or relaxation. They usually include some kind of action that makes a soft noise, such as folding towels or slicing fruit.
- Unboxing – unpacking and demonstrating new toys or other goods. Many of these videos only show the vlogger’s hands – great if you don’t want to get on the camera yourself.
- Gaming – video yourself gaming, similar to Twitch (above) but on YouTube.
- Pimple popping – ok, this one is extremely niche and also gross but there’s an American dermatologist called Dr. Pimple Popper who has 4.5 million subscribers!
- Ambient sounds – soundtracks of background noise such as fans, rain or coffee shop chatter are extremely popular with people who use them for concentration or sleep aids. You could start a channel in this niche if you have no interest in appearing in a video yourself.
I’m not suggesting YouTube is a quick or easy way to make money. Like blogging, it will take a lot of time and effort to build up your channel to the point where you can monetise it.
But I wanted to share some of these more unusual niches to inspire anyone who may have thought YouTube wasn’t for them!
>> Related post: How to Make Money Online: 50+ Money Making Ideas
Sell your old shoes
So I often recommend have a clear out and selling off your clutter as one way to make money fast. But what can you sell if you don’t have any spare furniture or good quality clothes, and you simply don’t think you have anything that people want to buy?
One new (and slightly weird!) idea is to sell your old shoes and slippers instead of throwing them out.
You might be thinking that your worn out shoes are too gross and smelly to sell. But that’s kind of the point… apparently there is a certain kind of person who enjoys this stuff.
This is a new money making idea that I read about on Emma Drew’s blog but I haven’t been brave enough to try it yet!
It might freak you out a bit, but if you are literally going to throw away these old shoes anyway, you may as well try to make a bit of cash.
Obviously you will want to take certain safety precautions, and also you have to be careful with the language you use if listing on eBay. See Emma’s post for tips.
Online life coach
Society has always had a place for coaches and advisers, but the idea of working as a life coach is something new to me.
Some life coaches offer general advice, but many specialise in an area such as mindset, business or dating.
This is a job you can do completely online. Many life coaches consult with their clients over video call and email.
Life coaching is not a regulated industry so technically anyone can do it. There are lots of life coach gigs on freelance sites such as Fiverr that you can browse for inspiration.
However, if you’re considering entering this field as a career, there are various training courses you can take online which can help you be taken more seriously.
Get paid to answer questions
If you enjoy research and helping people out, there are several different ways you can get paid to answer questions online!
For quick and easy questions, AQA is a UK based text message answer service. They are currently recruiting researchers to answer the questions.
KGB is a similar question and answer service hiring in the US, Canada and the Philippines.
Wonder is another company hiring work from home researchers. The questions here can be a little bit more in depth and you have to produce some kind of written report.
Finally, if you have some kind of professional knowledge, you can get paid to answer questions on Just Answer. You can consult with clients online or by phone. The types of professional they are looking for include everything from lawyers to antiques specialists.
Make money on Pinterest
Here’s one online money making idea that I’ve used myself to great success. It’s not new to me, but I’m classing it as a ‘new way to make money’ because it wasn’t even possible a couple of years ago!
The idea is to make money on Pinterest by pinning affiliate links. This means that when someone clicks through your pin and buys the product you pinned, you make a commission.
Affiliate marketing works really well on Pinterest because it’s a place where people go to look for ideas and things to buy. You can help people out by sharing links to awesome products, and make money in return!
I learned how to do this from following this short e-course. It’s very practical and easy to follow. I got it set up in an afternoon and started making money the same week 🙂
>> Related post: How to Make Your First Affiliate Sale in 24 Hours: Ebook Review
Lots of companies out there are looking for people to review products or test out their new products before they hit the market.
If you sign up with the right companies, you can either get paid to review products you already own, and/or you’ll get lots of cool freebies to test, which you can then either keep or sell on.
Here are some companies that will send you free stuff to test:
In return for testing, you’ll usually either have to fill in a feedback form or write a review.
One spin on this is testing out websites and apps.
In this case, you don’t get a physical product to test. Instead, you’ll be directed to a site where you click around with the site for a few minutes and give feedback on usability and glitches. These sites tend to pay pretty well, and you don’t need any technical knowledge.
Try signing up with User Testing to get started.