There is a lot more to earning money online that what meets the eye. The equation isn’t simply driven by a motivation to rake the cash in. There are several other factors that commingle and influence each other to create an addiction for this particular stream of income. And the most lucrative of these is the fact that the initial financial outlay or expense can be next to nothing. If you possess a functioning laptop, a broadband connection and a desire to try out the new and the untested, you can easily earn a decent sum of money every month. What’s decent for professionals becomes downright alluring for college students who wish to supplement their pocket money or take the load off their parents and contribute to their own education.
SPOTTING THE LEGIT SITES:
Let’s get down to brass tacks! Not all web promises are writ in stone. When choosing where to put time and energy in, seekers must be very discerning and careful. There is no cut and dried ‘guide’ to genuine online offers but some signals worth keeping in mind are:
- The age of the domain and its credibility. When you come across a website that boasts it can connect you to bona-fide channels to make money, the first thing you need to do is use an application like The Domain Age Checker from Webconfs to take a quick look at the number of years it has been live. This isn’t a sure-shot guarantee of transparency or trust but given the close eye Google likes to keep on black hat SEO practices and spammy sites, if an old domain comes up in the search engine results, it is likely to be one that doesn’t have a barrage of negativity and complaints associated with it.
- The amount of money it throws around! Online money making is not a myth. But it is very rare for complete novices to sign up for a free account and start earning thousands of dollars from the get-go. Sites that talk about astronomical sums like $300 a day are certainly not taking about legal means of securing an income and should be avoided. Even if they have smiling head-shots of supposedly successful people touting cheques from PayPal and Google.
- The need to provide a ‘security deposit’. No monetary investment means exactly that. No investment! If you are asked to put in a certain amount of money as a ‘starter’ or purchase a course that will give you back ten times the initial spend, you better look elsewhere. There are high chances that you will never see a penny in returns.
- The comments. Dozens of unmoderated comments by people pitching their own courses or promising ludicrous success with never heard before systems shows that the site authorities do not mind such traffic and may actually support or endorse underhanded practices. Obviously this can be an indication of plain old sloppy administration but given the clime of disbelief that has riddled the industry of online money making, platforms that want to set themselves apart take meticulous care to ensure that nothing even remotely ‘non-kosher’ is associated with them!
KNOWING WHAT TO EXPECT:
Earning online without investment is possible and feasible. A major reason behind this is digital marketing and its nuances. Robust digital promotions cost money. In order to create a viral piece of content with some thought and strategy, solid research, the assistance of a good copywriter and a proficient designer may be needed. Not all small businesses can afford quality. And thus they leverage the methods that rely on quantity. They want to be able to reach a lot of touch points with collateral that is mediocre at best and hope that the sheer volume of the effort can drive some results and conversions. And they require dedicated labor at affordable prices to make this a reality.
Everything from forum posting to ad clicking ties back to this concept in one way or other! For people looking to earn money without a sizeable financial investment, it is important to set the ‘right’ expectations. The first month may be slow. The value of one action may be quite low, say a few cents at best. But this is a cumulative system. Where gradual work builds up into good pay-offs. Because the recurring expenses are negligible and there is no question of ‘breaking even’, you are in profit from the moment you start. It is essential to keep disillusionment at bay and master one channel thoroughly before diversifying and trying your luck with other systems.
SOME ‘NO-INVESTMENT’ MONEY MAKING OPTIONS THAT WORK:
These may be used by anyone and everyone. That is the beauty of the internet. It doesn’t rely on boundaries nor does it give credence to the notion of privileged individuals. Technology doesn’t play favorites.
But college students stand to gain the most from these sites as they do not have a lavish lifestyle or pressing family commitments in most cases and the cash that comes in is adequate to allow them small luxuries.
- Affiliate marketing – There was a time when affiliate marketing was considered a means of making money for top tier bloggers and marketers. There had to be ‘appreciable’ traffic to a website and the person suggesting the products had to have the reputation of an influencer. However the scenario has changed in the 7 to 10 odd years since the rise of online affiliate opportunities. The model is extremely scalable and even startups and small enterprises are investing heavily in creating a pool of enthusiastic affiliates ready to promote their products. Interested individuals need to start a blog in order to get the first traffic trickling. So what’s different from the olden days? The advantage lies in the power of social media. You can drive visitors to your blog by dropping messages on your social platforms. Active college students tend to have thousands of followers and friends and there is often some similarity between their hobbies and their preferences. If you choose an affiliate program for a product or a service that genuinely intrigues you and stirs your passion, you can be up and running on a free blogging site like WordPress or Blogger. A Google Search with the key phrase ‘Affiliate programs in [Area of Your Interest]’ brings up a comprehensive list of options. If the top ones have qualification criteria like a minimum of 5000 unique blog visits a day, do not hesitate to move down or even visit the second and third pages for more ‘newbie friendly’ alternatives. You don’t need to be a true blue wordsmith to create engaging content. Talk about your experience and offer first hand perspectives and tips in a friendly, re-assuring manner. The affiliate program you sign up for will give you basic branding material – the banners and the sign up forms and explain how the commission works. Your end of the responsibility is spending some time and working up leads from your social media circles.
- Pay-to-Click (PTC) sites – Pay-to-Click sounds like a dream. And it is one of the simplest ways of making money. A user needs to watch an advertisement for 30 seconds, validate it and get paid instantly. He can also make commissions byreferring the PTC site to his friends and acquaintances. The drawbacks are
- The small pay-off. PTC generally offers up to about 10 ads a day to a member and $0.1 at the best for a 30 second view. Those who know how to work PTC associate themselves with dozens of advertisers to augment their income.
- The questionable reliability of most sites. Scams abound and finding genuine PTC offers is time consuming.
Neobux happens to be one PTC hub that you can trust. It is a good place to start so that you get a feel of the process and the labor involved and thus can decide if Pay-to-Click is something you are interested in. Most importantly, it is a domain that is over 7 years old with good reviews from multiple users. Definitely worth a try!
- Bitcoin mining – Bitcoin is a new fad that is blazing like wild fire across the internet landscape. And so far it has proven to be quite scam resistant and transparent. If you aren’t aware of it, Bitcoin is a decentralized digital currency that is collected in an account or a wallet (Blockchain). Bitcoin is revolutionizing finance and money making prospects are rich:
- You can either sign up to be a miner at a Bitcoin site like freebitcoinand get rewarded in Bitcoins for validating the transactions that happen through the site.
- Or you can be paid in Bitcoins for viewing ads and carrying out other small chores, pretty much in the PTC format.
Bitcoin isn’t actual money. But it can be used to directly purchase all items necessary and can be exchanged into dollars, pounds or Euros at bitcoin Exchange facilities. Since one Bitcoin can be anywhere between 300 and 600 USD, working with them is quite fruitful.
Zero investment is no longer a drawback. In fact it is fast becoming possible to use skills or time as ‘seed’ fund and start the journey to financial independence. There are a few rules of thumb that must be paid heed to and seekers should be fine!
Paolo Mendoza is a veteran online money making advisor who specializes in tips and counselling for students on the lookout for streams of income without investment. He has helped hundreds of candidates on his website www.onlinejobsforstudentsite.com and is willing to dedicate time and attention to every seeker.