Make Money Online – 14 Work from Home Ideas for Budding Entrepreneurs

DISCLOSURE: This article may contain affiliate links. Which means we make a commission, at no cost to you, on products and services we recommend that you decide to buy. Read our full disclosure here.

Keep reading to find various ways you can make money online in 2021 and beyond. The great thing about the modern internet, is that you can start most of these projects for very little outlay and while you’re still working your day job.

1) Start a blog

Blogging for extra income has exploded in the last few years. Blogs are easy to setup and you can start one for just a few dollars per month with a web hosting company like Bluehost.

If this sounds like something you’d like to do, read our guide on how to start a blog.

To make money from a blog, you need to create content around the words and phrases people type into search engines like Google. While it is possible to make money blogging about your personal life, it’s much harder than blogging about a topic.

So, if you want to start a blog to earn extra income, think about a topic you enjoy and that other people enjoy too, then create your blog about that topic.

Popular blogging topics include food, travel, money and sport but you can set up a blog on any topic.

How do you make money from a blog?

Here are the the two most popular and passive ways to make money from a blog.

Display ads

A number of providers offer this service but you’ll need to get your site approved before you run ads. Some providers insist on your blog generating a minimum number of sessions before they’ll accept you as well. So you can start a blog today and apply to join their programmes tomorrow.

You’ll need to create content and generate traffic first.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the most popular display ad providers.

  • AdSense
  • Ezoic
  • AdThrive
  • Media.net
  • MediaVine

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a popular revenue source for bloggers.

It works like this – the blogger becomes an affiliate for a company, then promotes their products and services through their blog by way of using links that include a special code.

When somebody clicks on those links and buys a product or signs up for a service, the blogger earns a commission of the sale.

How does a blogger become an affiliate?

Some businesses run their own affiliate program while others use a network such as CJ, Shareasale, Awin, Amazon Associates, Rakuten and Avangate.

You can find out more about this revenue source by reading this beginner’s guide to affiliate marketing.

2) Start an eCommerce website

Do you fancy selling stuff online via your own website? Modern technology makes this easier than ever, and with people trusting online sellers more and more opportunities abound!

Setting up an eCommerce website requires some cash outlay, so it’s not for everybody. To set up an eCommerce website, you’ll need stock and a website. Shopify can help you with your website, but you’ll need to find a local wholesaler for your goods.

An alternative to carrying your own stock is working with a supplier who can deliver the goods on your behalf. This is called dropshipping. You take the order and the supplier sends it to the customer. It’s a system that works well but that’s not without its pitfalls.

3) Build websites for small businesses in your local area (or anywhere!)

You don’t have to be a web designer to build websites for people. Many websites are built using specialist software that do everything for you from structure to design. Of course, before you start building websites for other people, you’ll want to know how to do it yourself, so try building your own website to see if it’s something you enjoy doing. You’ll be surprised how easy it is.

If this is something you get into, be sure to have a contract in place that clearly defines what you will and won’t be doing for your clients.

4) Start a YouTube channel and become a YouTuber

Fancy it? You can start this side hustle with nothing more than the smartphone sitting on your desk or in your pocket. Successful and popular YouTubers make a ton of money primarily from running ads on their videos, but also by promoting stuff in their videos and linking to Amazon and other websites in the description to earn affiliate income from suppliers.

5) Become an online influencer

To make money as an online influencer, you’ll need to have a large social media following. The most popular platforms in 2021 are Instagram and TikTok.

If you’re big on either of these platforms (or others – you just need a following) you can work with brands and companies to promote their products and services to your audience, which will in turn, earn you income from commissions and the deals you set up with each one.

6) Start an Amazon FBA business

FBA stands for ‘fulfilment by Amazon’. It works like this – you secure goods from somewhere, send them to Amazon, they let you advertise them via their website and when you make a sale, Amazon delivers the goods to the customer on your behalf.

They don’t do this for free, of course. You’ll need to pay a monthly fee to use the service and inventory fees based on everything Amazon stores for you at its warehouse, and fulfilment fees based on everything Amazon delivers for you.

The main benefit to this service is the access you have to millions of customers. There is no way you could reach so many people so quickly if you set up a traditional online store.

7) Become a Twitch streamer

Twitch is a livestreaming platform, primarily used by gamers. People earn their money in similar ways to online influencers – brand sponsorships and affiliate marketing – but also through subscriptions and tips from their audience.

Once again, making good money from Twitch livestreaming requires a massive audience but people with small audiences can make money too.

8) Start a podcast

If livestreaming or making YouTube videos doesn’t appeal to you, how about starting a podcast? Look on iTunes or other listings’ websites and you’ll find podcasts on just about every subject. Typically they make money from advertising and sponsorship deals with brands and services, but it’s also possible to earn commissions from affiliate sales by providing listeners with a specific link that records the sales you generate.

Something else to think about: YouTube videos can be converted into a podcast by taking the audio file and uploading it services such as iTunes and Spotify.

9) Create an online course

This one sounds daunting. I mean, where do you even start?

Probably with a website like Teachable. They provide the infrastructure you need to create and run your course, all you have to do is provide the lessons and materials and find people to sign up. The courses can be made up of written content, videos and images. Which makes it a good option for anyone who isn’t keen on standing in front of a camera.

10 ) Create educational classes for Udemy

Udemy is similar to Teachable (mentioned above if your skimming) but its courses are delivered by video. So to use this service to teach people online, you’ll have to create a video! Don’t worry too much, you can always record your screen and provide a voiceover.

Udemy recommends your course should be at two hours long. Once you’ve created and launched your course, it could make you passive income each and every month for a very long time.

11) Through your social media accounts

Just because you’re not an influencer, Twitch streamer or YouTuber, doesn’t mean you can’t make money from your social media accounts. You can.

The way to do it is by using an affiliate link in your update and letting people know that the tweet, for example, is promoting a product or service by using a hashtag like #ad or #sponsored. Some of your followers will dislike this if you do it too often, so tread carefully.

12) Online surveys

Taking part in online surveys is an easy way to generate extra income each month. You can complete the surveys at any time during the day or night from the comfort of your own home, and get paid at the end of each month. For some, it’s better than spending hours watching TV!

13) Sell stuff on eBay

eBay is the site to use if you want to get rid of unwanted stuff from around the home. Once you’ve sold everything you no longer need, you can start buying stuff from other places – thrift shops, boot sales, other eBay sellers – and sell them through your own store.

14) Open an Etsy store

Etsy is a platform with huge reach that gives storeowners the chance to sell new goods to a mainly female audience. Typically, you’ll find things like jewellery, clothing, shoes, personalised gifts and crafty items but you’ll also find goods for the home, gamers and geeks.

It’s known for selling handmade items from makers around the world.

Recommended products and services:

  • Namecheap for domain names
  • Bluehost for US hosting
  • Guru for UK hosting
  • Kadence free theme with premium version available (it's the one used on this site)
  • Elegant Themes premium WordPress themes and plugins inlcuding Divi
  • Ezoic website and blog monetization via display ads