The jobs available for people looking to make money online run the gamut. On the internet, you can seek everything from full-time employment as a remote staff member to a work-whenever-you-want side hustle as a blogger or jewelry-maker.
Although the COVID-19 pandemic has rattled the job market, online hiring is strong in a range of industries. According to Glassdoor’s Job Market Report, there were 11,430 remote job openings in July on Glassdoor, up 28.3% from the year before.
“The fields with the most remote-work listings right now include areas like customer service, sales, computer and (information technology), medical and health, and education and training,” wrote Brie Weiler Reynolds, career development manager and coach at FlexJobs, a resource for finding remote jobs, part-time jobs, freelance jobs and other flexible jobs, in an email.
These are industries where work has moved away from in-person to online interactions, she notes.
Other fields with strong online hiring include project management and graphic design, Reynolds says. If you have relevant experience in these areas, you’ll increase your chances of earning money with an online job.
To earn money online, take inventory of the skills you offer and how you can market them to potential future employers. “I’m finding more and more (job seekers) are ‘niche-ing down’ and being really great at one specific skill,” says Kristin Larsen, a Nashville-based blogger who writes about side hustles on her blog Believe in a Budget. “People are willing to spend more on hiring someone who excels at one thing.”
For example, Larsen says, she hired someone to handle her emails. So if you know everything about a specific administrative task, coding language, social media platform or something else, those hyperspecific know-hows will stand out to employers.
Looking to start your online money-making search? Consider these job roles with which you can make money online:
- Customer service representative.
- Online craft seller.
- Virtual assistant.
- Editor or writer.
- Online tutor.
- Computer and information technology specialist.
- Graphic designer.
As retail relocates from brick-and-mortar stores toward digital storefronts during the coronavirus pandemic, look toward online work in customer service. As a customer service representative, you’ll address complaints, queries and questions from shoppers and clients. Typically a high-school diploma and relevant experience are prerequisites for this job. Listings appear on job-search sites such as Indeed, Remote.co and FlexJobs.
Looking to sell your art or crafts online? A site such as Etsy or Zazzle works great for selling your wares, Larsen says. Compensation will depend on the product you sell and the time it takes to design and create. Relatedly, if you like fashion, interior design, fitness or other hobbies, you may even be able to supplement your income with endorsements on social media sites like Instagram or by blogging as an online media star.
A transcriber converts audio and video recordings to text, typing up meetings, interviews and other conversations. Some employers prefer expertise in fields like law and medicine. Transcription experts may be paid per hour of audio transcribed, which may take several hours to complete. A transcriber may also need to acquire transcription software or equipment to do this job effectively. Companies that hire transcribers include GoTransript and Rev. The average hourly rate is $15, according to PayScale.com.
Folks with administrative skills may find work providing remote office assistance. Tasks are often what you’d see an administrative assistant or personal assistant complete and may include answering emails or managing someone’s calendar. If you have experience in a specific field such as marketing or law, that can help make your job application stand out.
Wordsmiths can find work creating or proofreading content for websites, marketing firms, small businesses, publications and other clients. Experience in journalism, grant writing, marketing or a specific industry will help you secure the job.
If you’re looking to get into the hot online medical field, having a medical or science background may help you score a writing job in that area. Average hourly compensation hovers around $20, depending on the type of writing or editing work you’re doing, according to PayScale.
As schools move online during the health crisis, families and students will be looking for tutors who can video conference and teach online, specializing in all kinds of subjects. Share your knowledge of English, test-taking, math or another skill by tutoring online. Udemy and Outschool are two sources for online teaching gigs.
Companies may be looking for a range of tech workers, including data engineers and web publishers. To score an online job, update your resume and target companies that typically hire remote workers, Reynolds says. Don’t forget to list remote-specific technology you’re familiar with, she says. Such programs may include Slack, Google Chat, Dropbox, Google Drive, Zoom, GoToMeeting, Skype and other remote collaboration tools, she says.
These specialists may find contract or remote work building websites, information material or marketing brochures for a company. Typically, a college degree and relevant experience on tools such as Adobe Photoshop and InDesign are preferred.
One of the more concerning downsides of digital work is that scammers may target online job seekers, offering them fake career opportunities in exchange for their money or financial information.
Make sure to search online for any company you’re looking to work with, including searching for lawsuits, bad reviews on job-search sites and other red flags. “Always do research on any company that offers you online work. Never accept checks to buy supplies or computer equipment, and never wire money to anyone who offers you online work,” wrote Scott Garner, former corporate communications manager at ZipRecruiter, via email.
Try to get in touch with current or previous employees, says Sarah Stoddard, Glassdoor career expert. And look for other red flags, including vague job descriptions or background requirements that don’t make sense in your field, such as asking for a certain number of years of experience that don’t match the skills required. If almost anyone could qualify for the job, or if the pay is ridiculously generous, the job may be too good to be true. Plus, if the employer is asking you for money, Stoddard says, that’s a red hot flag that something’s not right.
If you want to succeed at earning money online, treat this new income stream seriously. That means acting professionally, responding to emails and meeting deadlines, experts say. In the world of freelancing, for example, reputation matters. If you want employers to continue to work with you and recommend your work, then maintaining a professional, reliable persona is essential to your new job as an online worker.
“Pay attention to your online presence,” Reynolds says. “Make sure that it’s professional and consistent.”
Updated on July 30, 2020: This story was published at an earlier date and has been updated with new information.
Susannah Snider is the Senior Editor for Personal Finance at U.S. News and a certified …