When I first started researching how to make money online, a lot of the resources I found were aimed at Americans.
Some online side hustles work from anywhere in the world, but I was frustrated to find a lot of sites that weren’t available to us over in the UK.
To save you the same frustrations, I’ve put together this list of the best ways to make money online in the UK.
What’s more, all of these side hustles have been personally tested by me or by other UK bloggers and friends of mine, so you can be sure these are legit ways to make money from home on our side of the pond.
Whether you want to make extra money for Christmas, save for a holiday, pay down debt or even start a new work-from-home career, I hope one of these options will help you make real money online.
Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links. That means that if you buy something from a site I’ve recommended, I may receive a commission at no extra cost to you.
Enjoy your extra cash!
- 1 Matched betting
- 2 Blogging
- 3 Teach English online
- 4 Design T-shirts
- 5 Survey sites
- 6 OhMyDosh!
- 7 20 Cogs
- 8 Fulfilled by Amazon business
- 9 Search Engine Evaluation
- 10 Pinterest affiliate marketing
- 11 Website testing
- 12 Dropshipping
- 13 Freelance writing
Best ways to make money online in the UK
I want to start with this one because it’s possibly the only way to make money online that is exclusive to us in the UK!
If you haven’t heard of matched betting before, don’t panic – despite the name, it’s not gambling.
Matched betting is a legal and tax-free way to make extra cash from home by learning how to use the bookies’ free bets.
It sounds too good to be true, and to be honest it did take me a while to get my head around it, but it quickly became one of my favourite side hustles!
In a nutshell, matched betting works because you always place two bets: one for a specific result, and one against that result.
You use online calculators which tell you exactly how much to bet and where.
Since you’re placing these two calculated bets at the same time, they cancel each other out, so you don’t lose money.
Then, when you add free bets into the equation, you make profit every time.
It takes a while to learn, but once it clicks, it seriously feels like you’ve just turned on the free money tap!
I use the matched betting service Profit Accumulator which lets me know about the new offers and has those handy online calculators I mentioned. You can make up to £45 with a free trial on their website.
The money I made matched betting has been life-changing for me, and I truly believe it’s one of the best ways to earn money online UK residents have available to us.
Oh, and because the money technically counts as ‘gambling wins’, you don’t have to declare it or pay tax on it in the UK! (Proof from HMRC.)
If you want to know more about matched betting, you can see my other posts here:
How much can you make matched betting?
When I was matched betting regularly, I was easily making around £200-£300 a month in just a few hours each week matched betting.
In my best month, I made nearly £600. The more time you spend, the more you can earn.
(Disclosure: I put my own matched betting on hold recently when I was preparing to apply for a mortgage because I didn’t want betting transactions on my bank statements. Something to keep in mind.)
There are always lots of offers available, and to some extent it is seasonal. For example, you can really cash in during the big horse racing festivals like Cheltenham!
On the Profit Accumulator forums I have seen some serious matched betters who claim to make up to £2,000 each month, but you would have to work on it full time to get near this kind of money.
However, it’s very achievable to make at least £200 a month in a few hours here and there, even around a day job.
Profit Accumulator is an invaluable resource for me and I would not try matched betting without it.
As well as step-by-step training and customer support, it gives you access to the calculators and software needed to show you exactly how much to bet in each place so you don’t lose money. And it also has a match finder tool that saves you hours comparing the odds across different websites.
You can also check out Profit Accumulator’s new sister site, Bonus Accumulator, which focuses on casino offers! Casino offers aren’t as predictable as matched betting but they are still potentially extremely profitable, and it makes a great alternative if you’re not sure about sports betting.
Profit Accumulator and Bonus Accumulator membership is only available to residents of the UK and Ireland, and you must be 18 or over.
Please note that although matched betting is not gambling, it does involve using betting websites so it is not recommended for anyone which a history of gambling problems or addiction.
Disclaimer: blogging is NOT a quick and easy way to make extra cash. Anyone who promises you can make money in your first month is likely misleading you.
But if you’re interested in a long-term opportunity to build your own business and work from home on your own schedule, blogging could be for you!
I have been blogging for about three years now. It took me about eight months to get to the stage where I was consistently making income every month (about £100-£200 per month at first).
After about a year and a half, I was making over £1,000 a month from blogging part time around my day job.
By two years, I was making enough to quit my job and work online full time.
Three years in, I find my income is variable but I make between £3000 and £6000 every month. And I had a baby this year, and only work part time now
For me, the best thing about blogging is how flexible it is. You don’t have any clients, bosses or deadlines – it’s just you and your laptop! You choose when and where to work.
Read more about my blogging journey here:
Wondering how bloggers actually make money? I wrote about the four easiest ways here:
So is blogging a good way to make money online in the UK? Well, since blogging is an online business, you can do it from anywhere in the world and speak to any audience in the world.
But if you’re based in the UK, you have a great opportunity to niche down and target UK readers.
The UK has a lively blogging community but there are not as many big bloggers as in the US and there is less competition.
A lot of my posts which are focused on the UK market are doing really well in Google rankings because of this.
How much can you make blogging in the UK?
Be prepared to put in a lot of work upfront before you see any money – this isn’t a get rich quick scheme!
But after a year or so, you could be making £1,000-£2,000 each month. Some top bloggers earn tens of thousands.
Personally, I make much more money now than I did in my previous job, and I work far fewer hours, too. So it’s a win for me
I know several other full time, very successful bloggers in the UK writing on topics such as personal finance, food, travel and parenting. So I would say blogging is a very viable way to make money online in the UK, whether you’re looking for a creative side hustle or a new career.
I have a free, detailed step-by-step guide to starting a blog here: How to Start a Blog to Make Money
Once you’ve got set up, you might want to take a blogging course to talk you through the next steps.
Emma Drew’s course Turn Your Dreams into Money is written by a successful UK blogger and addresses things such as legal disclosures, which can be different in the UK from the US.
The Pinterest course Pinteresting Strategies helped take my blog traffic from 10k to 39k page views in one month and it only cost $32 – hands down the best blogging resource I’ve ever bought!
Teach English online
As a native English speaker, you already have one fantastic skill which is highly in demand all over the world.
Many companies are looking for native speakers to teach English to students abroad.
You can do this over Skype, so it’s completely online – all you need is a computer with a webcam and mic, and a quiet room.
Many companies don’t even require a teaching qualification, although most do request a bachelor’s degree in any subject.
Being British can be an additional advantage, as many students or companies request a British accent.
If you’re an English speaker wondering how to make money on the internet without any start up costs or major time investments, this might be the money making solution for you.
Unlike blogging or affiliate marketing (which require time to build your business), you can start earning straight away.
This is one side hustle I haven’t tried myself yet, but it is next on my list, especially since I used to work as a ESL teacher in ‘real life’ and it was a lot of fun!
Related post: 29 Legit Online Jobs For Students To Earn Money At Home
How much can you make teaching English online?
This depends on the company you sign up with, and your level of experience.
If you have a minimum 40 hour TEFL certificate, one of the best places to get started is EF (Education First). They provide (paid!) training and even pre-prepared lesson materials to cut down on your planning time.
EF pay up to £12.50 per hour and they are currently recruiting British qualified TEFL teachers to tutor kids in China. Peak hours are weekday mornings (UK time).
If you don’t have a teaching qualification, try iTalki. This is an online language teaching portal where you can set your own rates. As an unqualified teacher, you can offer informal conversation sessions for around £8-10. You literally just get paid to chat!
Experienced teachers can charge even more on iTalki, but it’s up to you to prepare the lessons and provide your own materials.
Not bad for a fun and easy job you can do from the sofa!
There are lots of companies looking for online English teachers but here are a few to get started with:
This is one of my own current side hustles. I LOVE it because after some initial work, it generates passive income every month!
I design T-shirts to sell on Merch By Amazon. You literally just upload the design, and Amazon handles the selling, printing, packing and delivery.
It’s an incredible business that’s almost completely hands free.
Merch By Amazon is the best way to sell T-shirts online because you can tap into Amazon’s massive customer base. There is a waiting list to join, but no worries – you can use this smart workaround while you’re waiting.
There are also dozens of other platforms where you can sell your designs, such as Printful.
The Merch platform is run by the US Amazon, but you can become a designer from any country in the world because it’s all completely online.
Last year, Merch expanded to the UK and German markets, but many international sellers have said their designs that are popular in the US don’t do so well in the UK.
I think this is a great time to get on board as a UK seller and take advantage of your cultural knowledge by making some shirts specifically for a British audience!
Merch are also regularly adding new products you can put your designs on, such as hoodies, vests and PopSockets.
No design skills? Don’t worry. Most of my shirts have simple text slogans only, and some of them do very well.
You can use free software such as Gimp or Canva to create your designs.
How much can you make selling on Merch?
As with many other online businesses like blogging, the sky’s the limit!
If you hit on a winning design – or better, several – you can sell thousands of units and make tens of thousands of pounds each month. No joke.
I personally make on average over $100 in recurring monthly passive income. I currently have 34 products live, and only about 5 of them regularly sell.
Also, I haven’t uploaded any new shirts since last December! So you can see the potential to scale up if I spend more time on it.
Here are my earnings over the last year on Merch:
My Merch earnings over the last year. Bring on December! $$$
Get on the waiting list now with Merch By Amazon.
While you wait, you can get started on alternate print-on-demand platform Printful.
Surveys are one of the most common ways to make money online. It’s how I got started making extra money myself.
However, when I first started looking for survey sites online, I was frustrated to find that a lot of them were only open to US residents.
I put together this list of the best survey sites available in the UK. Many of them will work from anywhere in the world, but rest assured that all will work in the UK.
Pro tip: my all time favourite survey site is Prolific Academic. It’s the only site that never screens you out, plus it’s the best paying!
How much can you make doing surveys?
Surveys famously don’t pay that well. Their main advantage is that you can fit them into your day and do as much or little as you like.
They can be great as a way to start making money online, especially if you don’t have much spare time at the moment, but if you are looking for a long term option I would recommend one of the other options on this list.
Expect to make up to £100 a month, depending on how much time you put in.
If you’re new to survey sites, sign up with my favourites first:
See this post for lots more!
OhMyDosh! is a UK money making website which is a GREAT way to make some extra cash online fast.
On OhMyDosh!, you earn mostly by doing special offers, such as signing up for free trials.
You can also earn from surveys, entering competitions, and cashback on your online shopping.
This is my top recommended money making site at the moment because it’s so easy and they pay out really fast!
You only need to earn a minimum of £10 to cash out (and you can do this in under half an hour!) and payments take about 3 days to clear.
There is a ‘Lightening Payouts’ section you can focus on if you need money fast.
Many of the offers need you to spend something before you make more money back. Just keep a record of everything you sign up to, and make sure to cancel any free trials in time. There’s also a ‘no spend’ section if you want to avoid this!
How much can you make on OhMyDosh?
I signed up to OhMyDosh! last year, and I made £20.50 literally within 30 minutes of joining! I did pay £2.99 to sign up for some trials, so that leaves £17.51 profit.
30 minutes work on OhMyDosh!
Your rate of earning does go down a bit after you’ve done the most profitable offers first. But there are constantly new offers added, so this is an easy way to earn around £50 a month and score some great freebies too
Read my full review here.
The difference is that you have to complete all 20 offers (‘cogs’) before you can claim your money. This means it takes a lot longer to cash out, but once you get there, you have a nice big chunk of money coming your way.
My top tip for both sites is to use an old/separate email address for this kind of thing, as some of the offer partners will spam you a lot.
How much can you make on 20 Cogs?
I made a total profit of £111.95 (£134.93 minus £22.98 on sign ups etc) – but the average is apparently closer to £200. A lot of the highest paying offers are for betting sites, but I couldn’t join as a new customer as I do matched betting.
My 20 Cogs earnings proof
If you can’t do a particular offer, you can always skip it and get another.
After doing all 20 cogs you do get new offers appearing, but basically this is a one-off way to earn a chunk of cash.
20 Cogs are offering an exclusive £10 signing bonus for my readers when you join through my link!
Read my full review here (pay attention to the tips and warnings).
Fulfilled by Amazon business
Fulfilled by Amazon (or FBA) is an awesome business model that makes it so easy to sell on Amazon for a profit.
With FBA, you send your products into the Amazon warehouse and let them handle packing, shipping and deliveries. All you have to do is source the products.
Amazon gets over 3 million visitors DAILY in the UK alone, so to be able to tap into this customer base is incredible!
Most FBA businesses use something called retail arbitrage. This simply means finding something for sale cheaply and reselling it for a higher price.
Preparing parcels for shipment to customer on table
Many FBAers source products cheaply from China. You can even get in touch with a factory and have your own product made through a website like Alibaba.
This is such a profitable business model that UK blogger Paul from Mr Paul Blog was able to quit his job as cabin crew to work on FBA full time after just six months (turning over £50,000 selling on Amazon!)
Related post: 7 Ways to Make Money on Amazon
How much can you make with FBA?
FBA is a scalable business. You do need some money upfront to invest in this business model, and your profits will be dependent on that.
You will probably need to start small and reinvest your profits into the business as you grow, but it’s possible to earn a full-time income of several thousand a month once you get established.
Jessica from The Selling Family was looking into how to make money from home after she was let go from her job, when she came across the idea of selling on Amazon.
She now makes a full time income from FBA, enough for her husband to quit his job too so they can both stay at home with their son. They have a free 7 day email course which will teach you:
- Why leveraging FBA is essential for Amazon sellers
- Which niche you should sell in
- Picking items to buy
- How to price your items
- How many items should you buy
- And more!
Jessica is US based but everything she teaches applies to UK sellers as well and it is the best introduction you’ll find to making money on Amazon.
Search Engine Evaluation
Search engine evaluation is a little known work from home job available in the UK, and many other countries. The work involves assessing search engine results to help improve relevance. A similar job is social media evaluation.
Many people in the UK are successfully working online as search engine evaluators to make extra money from home. Search engine evaluators have to sign a confidentiality agreement so it’s difficult to say much about what the actual work involves, but have a search over on The Money Shed forums for some interesting discussions.
To get the job, you’ll have to pass an online test. Full details and training are given when you apply.
One advantage of this job is you can pick your hours and work around the school run or other commitments.
How much can you make as a search engine evaluator?
Search engine evaluators typically make £9-£10 per hour.
There are two main companies offering search engine evaluation work in the UK. Check their sites for availability:
Pinterest affiliate marketing
Did you know you can get paid to pin on Pinterest?
Yes, this is a real thing! I used to do this side hustle myself and it made me over £100 each month. (I have dropped this now to concentrate on blogging since there are only so many hours in a day).
I made money on Pinterest by pinning affiliate links for cool products I love. That means, if somebody clicks on the pin I made with my special link and buys a product, I get paid a commission.
There are so many reasons why Pinterest affiliate marketing is an awesome side hustle.
For starters, it’s really fun! You can tailor it completely to your own interests and basically carry on pinning the same sort of thing you’ve always pinned on Pinterest.
Secondly, it’s completely flexible and you can work as much or little as you like. You do need to be consistent with daily pinning if you want to see growth, but you can do this in less than an hour each day.
Also, you can use schedulers like Tailwind to keep your account going even if you need some days off. This means eventually you can be making money in your sleep!
As with blogging, you can do this from anywhere in the world. You can choose to target a UK audience or keep it general. I mostly pinned products that are available globally and I found my audience was about 50/50 split between the UK and US.
Related post: 4 Fantastic Ways to Make Money on Pinterest
How much can you make pinning affiliate links?
After working on Pinterest affiliate marketing for about six months, I was making about £100-£150 each month with less than 30 minutes work per day.
These are my earnings from one affiliate network when I was working on it last year.
As with blogging, it takes some time upfront to get your business going, but after a point it starts to snowball and takes much less time to maintain.
Plus, your affiliate pins carry on floating around out there for a while. So I still made money passively for a while even after I stopped actively working on it 🤑
I have heard that some other affiliate pinners in a group I’m in are earning over $1,000 each month and there was one person who earned $350 in a single day when she had an affiliate pin go viral! But as with most other side hustles, it takes a lot of hard work and a little bit of luck to see these numbers.
I first got started with Pinterest affiliate marketing after taking this awesome course from Elise McDowell. I made money on my fourth day, and the course paid for itself in less than a month! You can also check out my review here.
I have also written my own tutorial on how to make money on Pinterest here.
Did you know you can get paid simply to check out different websites and apps?
You don’t need any technical knowledge. The clients just want to know how their sites come across to an average user.
There are many companies such as Userlytics that pay for this kind of work. You will need to install a special software on your browser. The software records your screen and voice as you visit different websites and talk about your impressions of the site.
Tests are first come, first served, so this isn’t a full time job. But this is a fun little side hustle to earn some extra pocket money each month.
How much can you make testing websites?
Most sites pay around $10/£7 for a 20 minute test or $3 for a 5 minute test. It’s great money! Just keep in mind that you might only get a few tests a week.
I’ve found that most tests are available during UK working hours, so if you are at home during the day this might be a great opportunity for you.
These sites are all hiring testers:
See here for more.
Dropshipping is an exciting way to build an online shop without having to handle any inventory yourself!
You set up an online storefront for the products on Shopify or similar. When the orders come in, you ask the supplier to send the products directly to the customer.
A profitable business model with very low overheads, which you can do from anywhere in the world!
How much can you make dropshipping?
This is another business which can take time to get started but can potentially scale up into a full time income.
You will grow faster if you have some money to invest in paid traffic (for example, Facebook ads) to get visitors to your store faster.
Matt from Secret Wealth Project has some great resources on dropshipping from a UK perspective and even has a free getting started series on YouTube. The Secret Wealth Project Facebook group is full of inspirational stories from people smashing it in the UK and worldwide!
If you have a way with words, have you considered freelance writing as an online side hustle?
This is another online job where being British can be an advantage because it puts you in a niche market. Many UK businesses need writers who are familiar with UK spelling and style.
If you find writing fun and you have good spelling and grammar (as well as organisation and time management skills!), freelance writing could be the best way to make money online for you.
How much can you make?
This will vary a lot depending on your specialism and clients.
So-called ‘content mills’ such as Textbroker UK are the easiest place to get started if you have zero experience, but they pay notoriously badly.
But if you can carve out a niche for yourself – especially in a specialised or technical topic such as IT, or sales copywriting – you can make upwards of £100 an article.
You’re also more likely to earn more if you pitch clients directly, rather than going through a freelance site.
This is a really helpful and thorough guide to marketing yourself as a freelance writer.
And if you’re looking for inspiration on how to niche down, here’s a list of 200+ freelance writing niches.
How to make money online in the UK: pick one and get started!
As you can see, there are loads of different legit ways to make money online in the UK. Just because we want to make money in pounds, not dollars, doesn’t mean we have to miss out!
I hope that you’ll find something on this list to inspire you, whether you want to earn an extra £50 a month or find a whole new online job.
If I could give you one piece of advice from here, it’s to pick one of these options and commit! I’ve definitely been guilty of ‘shiny object syndrome’ myself – jumping from one exciting new business opportunity to the next, without giving myself time to really develop any of my ideas.
But when I’ve settled on one side hustle and committed just half an hour a day, or several hours once a week, for several weeks – that’s when I really started to see results.
Good luck and happy money making!
Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried any of these and have advice for our fellow money-making Brits
This post was first published on 24 April 2018 and was last updated on 5 December 2019.
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