35+ Smart Ways to Make Money Online in 2017

This post may contain affiliate links.

Working from home and making money online has always been my dream (and I know it is for a lot of people) because it allows you to be your own boss, get flexible working hours, spend more time with your family, earn extra income and connect with other like-minded people around the world. There are many ways a person can work from home and make money online. The real challenge I see is finding the right work-at-home job and avoiding scams. I have taken the guesswork out of the whole process and outlined, in detail, 35 smart ways to make money online.

Working from home and making money online has always been my dream (and I know it is for a lot of people) because it allows you to be your own boss, get flexible working hours, spend more time with your family, earn extra income and connect with other like-minded people around the world. 

There are many ways a person can work from home and make money online. The real challenge, I see, is finding the right work-at-home jobs and avoiding scams. I have taken the guesswork out of the whole process and outlined, in detail, 35 smart ways to make money online.

Make Money Online in 2017 & Beyond


1. Start a Profitable Blog

I’ve started with blogging because this is the smartest way to make money online. You  make money while you slept! How cool is that?

If you want to make passive income and build a long-term profitable business, you need to set up a blog. There are many avenues you can explore to make money from your blog. Just learn how to drive traffic to it and improve your conversions.

A few years ago, I didn’t know much about blogging. I didn’t even know that it was possible to make money this way. But, once I got the hang of it and got set up properly, everything just fell into place.

I love creating content and connecting with people through my blog, but waking up to commissions in my PayPal account made through products I’ve recommended to my audience is just amazing!

Successful bloggers like Michelle Schroeder of Making Sense of Cents or Regina of ByRegina.com make thousands of dollars per month just from their blogs. I haven’t reached that level yet but that’s my long-term goal.

Side Note:  Want to start your own blog? I created a free step-by-step tutorial that shows you exactly how to set up a self-hosted WordPress blog in 15 minutes or less!)  You can start yours for just $3.95 per month (you only get this lower price through my special link  for a short period of time) with HostGator. In addition, you will get $100 credit for Google Adwords and a $100 Bing Ads so you can start getting the right website traffic to your new site. Avoid free services like Blogger or WordPress.com. You can’t make money with a free service and your website can be shut down without warning.

You can make money by:

  • Selling ad space to ad networks like Mediavine, media.net, Google Adsense etc
  • Promote other people’s products on your blog or social media platforms and earn commissions
  • Write Sponsored posts – Linqia and Social Spark are great places to check out
  • Create and sell your own products like ebooks, ecourses, printables, webinars. Many bloggers use Teachable, Thinkific or SendOwl
  • Create a services page and let clients hire you

Recommended Courses

Michelle Schroeder-Gardner went from $0 in affiliate income to over $50,000 per month. She will teach you how to build a six figure blog without millions of visitors or selling your soul.

Making Sense of Affiliate Marketing

Suzi was able to grow her blog from $0 to $11,000 per month just in one year. She will walk you through her path and everything she did to get to that level and how you can do the same.

2. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is the process of promoting someone else’s products to your target audience, and when they make a purchase you get a commission. Most companies pay between 10% to 75% of the total amount. This is the easiest way to make money online (through internet marketing) because the hard work has already been done for you. You don’t do research or create the products, which is the hardest part. Your work is to just get the products in front of your customers and once they buy you get your money.It can’t get any easier than that!

Recommended Course

ClickBank Success – Affiliate Marketing Without a Website

Best Affiliate Marketing Companies:

Rakuten Affiliate Network Welcome Program


work from home jobs

3. Create eBooks

Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing has made it so easy for people to make money through selling ebooks. If you are knowledgeable about a particular topic you can put together your ideas and sell them as an ebook. And, it doesn’t have to be 100 or 200 pages before you publish. It can be as short as 30 or 50 pages long. Just make sure you cover the most important points.

If you want to start creating ebooks but you don’t know where to start check out an amazing guide by Leslie Samuel, How to Create and Sell an eBook or one written by Stefan Pylarinos, The Ultimate Guide to Making Money Publishing Kindle eBooks. Another one that I find interesting is, How to Become a Bestselling Author on Amazon Kindle.

Other places to sell your ebooks

4. Create Online eCourses

Creating online courses is similar to creating ebooks. The only different is that the courses are more detailed. There is more room to include worksheets, checklists, audios or even videos. Regina Anaejionu over at ByRegina.com has created so many online courses that she sells on Teachable. Some are free and others are paid but her work stands out. You can also sell them on your blog but Teachable and Thinkific are great places to host and sell online ecourses. This is a great way to make passice income. You make money months or even years after you’ve created your product.

Recommended Course

How to Create An Awesome Online Course.

5. Webinars & Workshops

Once you start selling ebooks and ecourses hosting webinars and workshops becomes really easy. Allison Marshall over at Wonderlass hosts webinars and workshops using tools like Google Hangouts, WebinarJam or GoToMeeting. She has an amazing ecourse, Webinars for Introverts, that will show you how to conquer stage fright and put on a killer webinar.

6. Become a Tutor

If you are good at certain subjects or know skills that others want to learn, you can teach them online and make some money. The best part is you don’t need a degree or specific educational background. You can do this via Skype, webcam or on the phone.

One thing to note is that this has to be done one-on-one. It’s not like selling ebooks or courses. The market for this kind of work is mostly for high school kids or college students.

Side Note:  VIPKid is currently looking for teachers to teach young students in China from home. They pay $14 to $22 per hour. Click here to sign up or learn more!

Best Tutor Websites


make money online

7. Become a Virtual Assistant

As a Virtual Assistant, you are hired to do administrative work like setting up appointments using Google Calendar, web research, website maintenance, post content on social media platforms like Facebook and Pinterest etc.

Diana Ennen and Kelly Poelker explain this in more detail through their ebook Become a Highly Sought After VA. You can also sign up for Gina Horkey’s free e-course: Jump-start Your Virtual Assistant Career. It is a 5-Lesson Mini Course that will get your feet in the door when setting up your virtual assistance business.

Recommended Course

Work From Home As a Virtual Assistant

Legitimate Work-At-Home Virtual Assistant Companies:

8. Become a Transcriptionist

Transcription is listening to audio recordings and typing them in Microsoft Word or any other word processing software like WordPerfect. I have written a lot about this topic on this blog.

These articles should get you started

Recommended Courses

Transcribe Anywhere and Udemy.com have amazing courses that will teach you everything you need to know about transcription. One or two are paid but the rest are free.



8. Become a Captioner

If you’ve ever watched a movie and saw words on the screen that corresponded to what the character in the movie was saying, those are called captions. And the person doing that work is a captioner. Captioners listen to a series of videos then insert subtitles. If you are a transcriptionist looking for more work from home opportunies, this can be a great addition.

Work From Home Caption Companies:

35+ Smart Ways to Make Money Online in 2017Click To Tweet

10. Customer Support Agent

If receiving calls  and talking to people on the phone is not a problem for you, then you can as well get paid to do it. There are certain companies that pay you to talk to customers on their behalf for a fee. This involves answering questions about a company and the products or services they have to offer.

One thing to note is that you may be required to work on a set schedule and get a quiet environment.  Quiet environment means, no dogs barking in the background, no children playing or crying if you are a work-at-home mom like me. I will be covering more on Non-Phone jobs in another post to help out the moms (I’m one of them and understand the situation).

Best Customer Support Companies:

11. Data Entry

Many beginners like looking for data entry positions because they are easy to do and can earn some quick cash. Unfortunately, there aren’t many opportunities out there when it comes to data entry. The few good ones I know are:

12. Become a Moderator

A moderator is someone who takes care of an account on behalf of the owner. Moderators are usually hired to work on forums or social media platforms like Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram etc. Your work involves replying to comments or questions asked, ensure group members are following rules, bring order in case of a conflict and avoid spam by deleting members who are uncooperative or who post content that is prohibited.

Best Moderator Companies:


online freelance writing

13. Become a Freelance Writer

If you have excellent grammar skills and you can write well then congratulations! You might have just gotten yourself a work-at-home job. As a freelance writer, you will be writing blog posts, articles or ebooks for different clients, mostly blog or website owners. They use this content to optimize their sites and get higher rankings in Google. Kick-Start Your Freelance Writing Biz e-course will teach you everything you need to know about freelance writing. A tool like Grammarly will really improve your writing. I advise you to check it out once you are hired.

Best Work From Home Freelance Writing Companies:

14. Become a Freelance Proofreader

Proofreading is going through a transcript or a book that’s already been written to catch spelling and grammatical errors.  Caitlin Pyle over at ProofreadAnywhere has been a freelance proofreader for many years. In 2014, she made over $43,000 working part-time. Following this success, she decided to create an online ecourse that teaches people how they can succeed as proofreaders. Sign up for ProofreadAnywhere Mini Course and learn more about it.

Legit Work-At-Home Proofreading Companies:

15. Become a Translator

I have seen many authors, bloggers and online business owners wanting to translate their ebooks, articles, podcasts into other languages other than English so they can reach non-English speaking markets like French, Espanol, German, Chinese etc. If you can speak these languages fluently then you should put them to good use and make some money.

Work From Home Translators & Translation Jobs


16. Become a Graphic Designer

Graphic design skills are in demand now more than they were years ago. Both online and offline business owners want logos, illustrations or web designs that are appealing to their target audience. If you have these skills put them to good use by designing websites, creating logos or Kindle ebook covers for authors and other online entreprenuers.

A place like Fiverr.com has thousands of  graphic designers in the graphic design category alone. That number is proof enough that this skill is in high demand. Expect to make $10 to $30 as a beginner.

Online Graphic Design Jobs:

Alternatively, instead of looking for work, you can create your designs and sell them on sites like

Are You Looking For Ways to Work From Home? Get 35+ Smart Ways to Make Money Online in 2017Click To Tweet

17. Become a Book-Keeper 

I know, when you hear book-keeping you think it’s all about calculations and stuff. Well, to some extent, it is but even a beginner can learn and become a bookkeeper. You just need the right training to get started. Bookkeeper Business Academy would be a great place to start if this is what you want to do. You will get to learn what it entails and how to go about it. Get the free course here.

18. Become a Voice-Over Artist

If you have a great voice and the ability to speak like a celebrity or a famous person then you are in business.  Fiverr.com has so many voice-over artists selling their talent. Why not sell yours today!

19. Create Apps

The rise of Smartphones has led to the rise of apps. You can use websites like Apps Geyser to create eye-catching and beautiful apps that business owners and bloggers will want to buy. If you do a great job, you will get referrals and you can easily build a business around that.

A website like ShoutMeLoud has an amazing app for their website. You can easily get access to all their articles and videos on Google Play. If you are new and don’t have clients yet, create gigs on Fiverr.com and let clients look for you.


20. Become an Amazon FBA Seller

As an Amazon FBA Seller, you will be sending your products in bulk to Amazon and they sell them on your behalf. This is a good model because you don’t have to worry about shipping or keeping inventory. Jessica Lerrew over at the Selling Family runs this business and they earn six figures a year. They also have a great free ecourse that you can check out if you are interested in the Amazon FBA Seller business. Amazon FBA: Step by Step Guide on How to Make Money by Selling on Amazon is a great resource, as well.

21. Dropshipping

This is where you create an online store using digital selling marketplaces like Shopify, WooCommerce and Amazon. You advertise the products, when a customer makes an order your supplier ships the product directly to the customer. It looks like an easy business model. Just make sure you get suppliers who have a good reputation.

Selling Platforms

Dropshipping Companies


sell your stuff

22. Sell Stock Photos

 It’s illegal to take someone’s picture, wthout permission, and use it as your own. Google frowns so much about this practice. So, bloggers and online business owners have opted to buying stock photos that they have full rights to. If you can take beautiful pictures that people love, don’t let that talent go to waste. Utilize it and make some extra money

Stock Photography Websites:

Some female bloggers have come out and created their own stock photography membership sites. Mostly they use a plugin like Paid Membership Pro and Amazon s3 or Dropbox to host the photos then charge a monthly fee. If this seems like something you want to do, pick up a camera, install Paid Membershpip Pro and start taking those stunning photos!

Female Themed Stock Photography Membership Sites:

23. Sell on Teespring

Let your creative juices flow by creating  and selling T-Shirts on Teespring. Learn how to make money with Teespring. This article will show you how to design a t-shirt, how to set goals and price points, how to name your campaign, how to market your idea using social media and finally, how to make money. Benny Hsu made $100,000 on Teespring in just 5 months  and Lewis Ogden made $400 in one week on Teespring using Facebook ads.

24. Sell on Etsy

Are you creative and have a talent for crafting handmade goods? if you are, then you can make some money this year. Here, you create printables, bracelets, furniture and list them for free on Etsy. Just let your imagination work for you. In 2014, Sarah over at Unsettle.com turned $0.30 into $5,000 in 4 months on Etsy. You can check out her guide at, The Ultimate Guide to Selling on Etsy: How I Turned $0.30 into $5,000 in 4 Months.

25. Sell on eBay

If you have old things around the house that you no longer use but feel they still have value, you can sell them on eBay. eBay is a marketplace that will allow you to sell anything. The best part is you get started for free. You only pay when you reach a certian limit in your listings. The advise I can give you is, before you get started, check out what others are selling in your category so you have an idea of what’s hot and what’s moving quickly. You can also use the auction feature that allows you to sell your products at a discounted rate. The more the discounts the more products you will sell. David Siedeman has A beginner’s Guide to Selling on eBay that you can read over at Forbes.


26. Fiverr

Fiverr is a great freelance marketplace where you can sell your services starting at $5. Services can range from transcription, graphic design, singing, intro videos, voice-overs etc. They expanded the earning potential by introducing gig extras where you can sell your services for up to $4,500 if need be. This is a great option if you are working on large projects like designing websites, writing proposals or doing extensive web research.

After finishing the project, the client will review your work and give you feedback. Then, your money is automatically credited into your Fiverr account but you have to wait 14 days before withdrawing. This measure is put in place in case a customer wants a refund. After the 14 days, you can withdraw your funds to your PayPal account, bank transfer or using Payoneer MasterCard.

27. Amazon Mturk

This site has tasks called HITS (Human Intelligence Tasks). That name came about because they believe that humans can do a better job than computers can. The tasks range from transcription, data entry and answering some simple questions. They pay through bank or Amazon Gift Card.

28. ClickWorker

This company will hire you to do micro tasks like copy-writing, writing, translating, seo, data entry, research and tagging. This is a worldwide opportunity and you get paid via PayPal.


29.Take Online Surveys

This is a fun and easy way to make money online fast. Companies are willing to pay you so you tell them what you think about their products or services. One thing to keep in mind is that you get just a few surveys per month. My advice would be to sign up with as many companies as you can so that you get more surveys to work on, thus making more money at the end of the month.  Survey panels are free to join and some will go as far as sending you a sign up bonus. The best survey sites I can recommend are:

Cash-back & Referral Sites:


30. Usability Testing

This involves using a product like an app or website then you record yourself, in real time, giving your honest review or feedback about the experience you’ve had with the product, including the features and benefits. Depending on the company, you can make $10 to $15 for just 10 or 30 minutes work.

Best Usability Testing Companies:

31. Mystery Shopping

A mystery shopper is someone who helps businesses to improve their customer experience by going to a company, posing as a customer, monitoring everything that happens there then give honest feedback regarding the experience. Afterwards, the mystery shopping company pays a fee for doing the task. In addition, when you make a purchase in that same company you get reimbursed a portion of the money spent from your purchase.

Legitimate Mystery Shopping Companies

32. Search Engine Evaluator

A search engine evaluator (also known as a Google rater) is someone hired by Google or Bing to find out how relevant search results are when a word or phrase is typed in the Google search bar. For example, when someone is looking for Virginia Nakitari, owner of Earn Smart Online Class, earnsmartonlineclass.com should show up on the first page of Google, because this is the most relevant page to find more information about that person. Other pages like Facebook or Pinterest or Google+ can show up but the main page should be my page. The pay varies with the company but you should expect upwards of $13 per hour.

Best Search Engine Evaluator Companies:

33. Listen or Sell Music

There are two ways to this: One is you can create your own music and sell on sites like

Or two, you can listen and rate music at:

34. Make Money Online By Becoming An Airbnb Host

If you have a spare room in your house or have a house that’s not in use, you can earn money as an Airbnb host. Aside from the money, you an opportunity to meet new and interesting people. Just go on Airbnb and click on Become a Host then those interested will look for you.

make money online - earn money as an airbnb host

35. Online Contents & Giveaways

Another way to make money online is to join online contents and giveaways. If you are lucky, you can make some good money this way. All you have to do is join the contest or giveaway, follow the instructions then wait for the draw date. Once all this is done, a winner will be announced and the reward will be given. Those hosting may give you money or gifts depending on what the content was about.

Final Thoughts

As you have seen, there are many ways a person can work from home and make money online. Actually, I have barely scratched the surface. There are still so many other ways that we have not covered today. Let’s save them for later. But, it’s possible to work from home. It’s possible to earn extra income or even earn a full-time living online. The secret is in finding what you are good at, offering the best service, scaling and building a successful business out of it. The sky is the limit.  

I hope you enjoyed today’s post. If you need more posts like this, feel free to check out Free Online Courses Perfect for Beginners or 31+ Blogging Resources to Grow a Kick-Ass Blog.

Like what you see?

Let’s Connect:      Pinterest       Facebook      Twitter

35 Smart Ways to Make Money Online in 2017. Many people want to work from home and make money online so they can be their own bosses, get flexible working hours, earn extra income and spend more time with their families. There are many ways a person can work from home and make money online.

72 thoughts on “35+ Smart Ways to Make Money Online in 2017

  1. Casey the College Celiac

    Great tips! I’m bookmarking this to more thoroughly check out your recommendations for making a profitable blog. It’s amazing what we can do with the internet nowadays!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Hello Gloria,

      The online space has so many opportunities that a lot of people are not aware of it. ClickBank is a great site when doing affiliate marketing. I love it too. Please do try the music sites and let me know how it goes. Regards.

  2. Mandy Allen

    Having a computer and an internet connection opens up a whole new world and a whole load of potential for earning, doesn’t it. I found it hard to earn anything online at first, it takes practice, but now I’ve got the hang of it!

    Enjoy the journey!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Yeah, it is a bit hard in the beginning. But, when you get the right resources like this post, your online journey becomes easier. I’m glad you’ve gotten the hang of it.

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      You are most welcome. I will be writing a detailed post showcasing the best affiliate programs a blogger like you can become an affiliate and start making commissions. So, stay tuned!

  3. LeAnn Rodriguez

    What a wealth of information, Virginia! This is a thorough post for those who want to make money working from home. I look forward to digging through this list and have shared it on social media. Great job!

  4. Angela

    These are great ideas in a comprehensive form. So many people are looking for this type of information and just don’t know how to put it all together!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Hello Angela,

      I’m humbled by your kind words. I see so many people looking for legitimate ways to work from home and make some money, but most of the times they end up with scammers or ways that don’t work. I wanted to make it easy for them by providing different options that they can choose from. Be blessed.

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Hello Catherine,

      Happy you liked the resource. Please do. The affiliate marketing course is amazing. One thing I love about it is the Facebook Mastermind Group where you get to ask questions and interact with fellow members. You will learn a lot. If your budget allows, I would encourage you to enroll.

  5. Amanda (Daphnie's Mom)

    People ask me this all the time since I work from home. (I work from home for a global corporation as VP in IT – so not the same.) But I would love to send them to your blog when they ask since I obviously can’t help most people as they don’t have the right skills!

  6. Davi

    This is the most detailed list of work at home resources I’ve seen! I can tell you put a lot of time into this post and I appreciate that so much! I’ve pinned this so I can go back over and over and get ideas. Thanks for this awesome roundup!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Thank you, Davi. Yes, I did put a lot of work into it. I see a lot of people looking for legitimate ways to make money online, but most of them are just scams or jobs that don’t offer much. I felt the need to make the process easier for my readers by writing a detailed post.

  7. Kristin Cook

    Wow! That is a lot of info! I’m impressed by how much time that probably took you!
    I eventually want to do an ebook that maybe turns into a course, but it’s not something I want to do quite yet, so I’ve got some time to think on it.

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Thank you, Kristin. Creating ebooks and e-courses is a great idea because these are passive income streams that you can build once then get the rewards for life. This is a long-term goal of mine, as well. I’d be happy to nkow how it goes for you.

  8. Francesca

    Virginia I want to thank you for this amazing list. I thought I had a good idea of all the possible ways to work from home, but you’ve added so much to the list I had in mind! Definitely pinning this and saving it for future reference 🙂

  9. Helene

    Some really great information! I’ve been blogging without profit for a year to rebuild my skills, and I am just about to set up to launch a page to sell my services. I love that you listed legit companies for freelancers as well, since for me, it’s been a while and I really need to get out there and start earning. I’ve saved this post so I can come back later and re-read and utilize some of those great links!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Hello Helene,

      That’s a great idea. When you have a blog it’s easier to sell your services. More clients will be able to communicate with you and see what you have to offer. My next post is about affiliate programs that bloggers can join to increase their income. Please, stay tuned to find out more.

  10. Allyson

    This was perfect for me, as I am working on making my blog profitable!! Thank you for your knowledge!!

    1. Virginia Nakitari Post author

      Hello Allyson,

      My next post is about different affiliate programs a blogger can join to increase their income. I’m sure you will find it beneficial. Please, stay tuned.

  11. Robin McMahon

    This is such a wonderful list!!! Thank you so very much! I look forward to further investigating businesses that you recommended. Thanks for everything! Have a lovely day!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *