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Our Best Ways to Make Money: 73 Ideas to Make 2017 Your Richest Year Yet

Tags: money

We all want more Money. But far less of us actually do anything to make it happen.  This post is meant to take all of your excuses away- these are 73 of our BEST ways to make money.  All of these are actionable items that you can start on today.

There are lots of different ideas on this list for making extra money, from just simple side gigs… to launching full blown startups (and everything in between).

Obviously, earning extra money is something that can really change your life.  Money can buy you freedom in more ways than one, despite what people may say.

Earning extra money on top of your day job can improve many areas of your life:

  • Less stress from living paycheck to paycheck
  • Reduce the burden of crippling debt
  • More opportunities to save for a dream vacation
  • It can be passed on to others for social good
  • You can retire earlier
  • It can be snowballed into even more wealth

The purpose of this post is to serve as a source of ideas for all of the best ways to make money.  Let this list be a source of inspiration to you!

Whether you’ve only got a few spare minutes to make a quick buck or if you are willing to burn the midnight oil in the hours after your full-time job and put in maximum effort, there are SO many ways to earn extra money.

There is a ton of information on this page, so I suggest bookmarking it and coming back periodically.

Alright, let’s get to it!

Our 73 Best Ways to Make Money

There’s something on this list for everyone, but I wanted to start things off with my personal favorites in terms of making extra money.

1. Blog about your favorite hobby: This can be just a simple side hustle, or it can turn into something really special; it’s up to you. I’m a huge fan of blogging because I love writing and connecting with people all over the world. If you want to get started, read my post From 0-$100k: How Anyone Can Start Blogging. If you need some inspiration, just check out Michelle’s income reports over at Making Sense of Cents. Seriously, don’t discount the incredible opportunities that blogging can provide!


  • From 0-$100k: How Anyone Can Start Blogging
  • How to Turn Your Love of Cooking into Profit by Starting a Food Blog
  • How to Start a Lifestyle Blog and Use Pinterest to Make Money

For blogging, I recommend getting started on HostGator. Use our coupon code BTOP30 for 30% off.

2. Do Online Surveys: Companies are willing to pay money to get inside the heads of consumers.  Below are my favorite survey sites.  They’re free to join and free to use. Pro tip: It’s best to sign up for as many as you can as that way you can receive the most surveys and make the most money.

Swagbucks ($5 Free Signup Bonus)

MyPoints ($5 Free Signup Bonus)

Earning Station

Survey Club

VIP Voice

American Consumer Opinion



Point Club  

Harris Poll

3. Drive for Uber: This is a really good use of your time if you are trying to make some extra cash in a weekend.  Here’s a signup link that gives you $100 after you give your first ride, plus check out How I Made $427 in 2 Days Driving for Uber.

4. Earn More Interest on Your Savings: Move your savings over to a bank account that actually pays you a decent interest rate on your savings.  Discover pays nearly 1%, which is 11 times higher than the national average.  Take 10 minutes out of your day and do this- over time, it really does make a difference.

5. Peer to Peer Lending: Using money you already have to make more money is usually a pretty smart move. Using a service like Lending Club is a great way to act as a lender and earn interest on your money. Essentially, YOU act as the bank, which is pretty neat.  Lending Club is the world’s largest online credit marketplace connecting borrowers and investors. Definitely something worth looking into!

Learn more about Lending Club:

6. Sell Your Stuff:  Most of us are guilty of hanging onto things that we never use, myself included. Take a day and go through all your old stuff and get rid of some of it! One tool that is really helpful for this is Decluttr.  you can enter your items barcodes into their valuation engine and they’ll give you an instant offer.  Then you simply pack all your items into a box and then ship your items to them for free.  Get cash for your stuff with Decluttr.

7. Donate PlasmaDonating your body is a great way to help other people in need, and some donation centers even pay donors.  I regularly donate platelets and plasma with the American Red Cross (who unfortunately do not compensate donors), but it’s a great way to give back to the community.

To find a plasma donation center near you that compensates donors, visit

8. Get Cashback When You Shop:

Technically you’re not getting money, but you’re getting money back (cashback) on purchases you would have made anyways. Cool thing is, this is on top of any discounts/coupon codes you already have.  The two best sites that offer cashback on your online purchases are Ebates ($10 free signup bonus) and Swagbucks ($5 free signup bonus).

9. Bet on Your Own Weight Loss:

What better way to lose weight than to avoid losing a bet? Sites like allow you to place a wager and earn extra money when you successfully lose weight.

10. Invest Your Savings: Depending on your age, you should be netting around 7% year with a balanced investment portfolio. Have $50,000 in savings? That is $3,500 dollars PER YEAR that you are missing out on by not investing.  And getting started is easier than you think. Check out How to Make Money in the Stock Market, courtesy of Mr. Money Moustache. And FYI, TradeKing has a promo going on right now where you can get up to $100 in free trade commissions.

…More of My Favorites:

11. Become a Freelance Proofreader: In 2014, Caitlin Pyle made over $43,000 by working as a freelance proofreader… PART TIME. When she wasn’t working, she even had time to go on several fun vacations.  After she had a ton of success doing that, she decided she wanted to teach others how to do the same thing, so she started up Proofread Anywhere.  Sign up for her Free  7 Day Email Course on making money as a proofreader.

12. Manage Social Media for Businesses: This can also include advertising, but many businesses also need help just filling up their social media profiles with relevant (and consistent) content. If you enjoy learning about social media and want to take things a step further and earn extra money, social media management is a great option. If you’re good at it, it can also open up a lot of doors for you down the road. This is a great article from Small Biz Trends on How to Start Your Own Social Media Business.

13. Invest in Ideas You Believe In: If you are looking for a unique way to put your money to use, consider a service like Motif Investing. If there’s a particular sector you believe in, such as cancer research, Motif lets you invest in stocks related to that particular sector. And right now they are offering up to $150 to anyone who opens an account with them.

14. Participate in Paid Research Studies:  If you live near a university, there are likely all sorts of research studies looking for participants.  While I was an undergrad at Virginia Tech, I got paid $500 to participate in a 6 week dietary study.  The study provided all my meals AND paid me, but I had to eat a 5,000 calorie diet of 50% fat for 6 weeks, plus I had multiple muscle biopsies taken, urine/blood testing, etc.

15. Use Swagbucks for Online Search:

Swagbucks is a great way to passively earn cash and Amazon gift cards with very little work. They have a search tool, which is just like using Google to do your online searches, except you get rewarded “SBs” for the things you do through their website. Redeem SBs for rewards. And by signing up through our link, they give you a free $5. Boom.

16. Trade Options: Warning: don’t do this without at least SOME understanding of what you are doing. Trading options is similar to trading stocks, but there can be higher risks involved. Optionshouse is a great platform for options trading, and right now they have a promotion where they are offering commission free trading for 60 days when you open an account. To learn more about trading options, read this Simple Guide to Making Money with Options.

17. Install the Nielsen Digital Voice App: Install the app, surf the web, and get entries into their monthly $10,000 sweepstakes. Learn more about Nielsen Digital Voice here.

18. Install the Shoptracker App: As the name suggests, this app tracks your shopping habits (anonymously) for market research companies. You get a free $3 just for installing the app!

19. Consulting for Local Small Businesses: This side hustle can easily become a full time job! If you’ve got expertise in an area and think you can help small businesses near you, give this a shot. For instance, Ben and I know a lot about running Facebook advertising campaigns, so we approached the owner of our gym if he would let us design a few campaigns for him.  And of course he was thrilled to get the help! Here’s a useful 18 Step Checklist for Becoming a Small Business Consultant.

20. Affiliate Marketing: That’s how this website is able to generate thousands in revenue each month without selling anything. Setting up an affiliate-focused website is fairly easy, but it will take quite a bit of time and effort to draw in enough traffic to make decent money. Our article From 0-$100k: How Anyone Can Start Blogging is a great starting point!

Other Ways to Earn Extra Money:

21. Create an Online Course: If you’ve got expertise in a certain area, package up your knowledge into an online course and sell it. This has become a very popular business model for online entrepreneurs over the past several years.  The two big websites that are used to sell online courses are Udemy and Teachable. Check out this awesome article from Regina over at on How to Create an Online Course that Sells.

22. Offer Resume Help: This can either be done locally or through an online service like Fiverr. Resumes are something that people can be very insecure and self conscious about, which means there is always a demand for services that will help spruce them up.  Holly Hanna from The Work at Home Woman wrote a really useful article on How to Make Money from Home with Resume Writing.

23. Become a Bartender: If you live in a college town, this can be a really lucrative side hustle. Get a better idea of how much you can expect to earn as a bartender here.

24. Pet Sitting: Especially around the holidays, this service is in high demand. People want someone they can trust to look after their pets while they are out of town.  ToughNickel has a helpful page on Making Money as a Pet Sitter.

25. Start Personal Training: If you have a passion for fitness and love helping others improve their health, you might consider becoming a personal trainer. With social media, there are now more ways than just 1 on 1 training to earn extra money in the fitness industry. Smart Asset wrote a great piece on The Economics of Personal Training.

26. Become a Notary: It’s usually less than a hundred dollars to get registered in most states, but once you’re registered, you can charge whatever fees you want for your services.

27. Car Washing and Detailing: You can take this side hustle as far as you want. Car detailing has the benefit of recurring work, assuming you don’t get fired! Money Connexion has a great article on How to Start a Car Detailing Business, if you’re interested.

28. Be a Coach/Trainer for a Specific Sport: During my high school days, I was a pretty decent golfer (about a 2-3 handicap). I was asked by my local club professional if I would help him teach his junior golf clinics that summer. If you have specialized skill in any sport, there are definitely opportunities out there for teaching others the fundamentals (and getting paid).

29. Marketing Copy Writing: If you can persuade people to act on something via the written word, you can make really good money.  Copy writing is a skill that takes time and effort to perfect, but once you get the hang of it, you become very valuable.  Here are 10 Ways to Find Your First Copy Writing Clients, courtesy of Make a Living Writing.

30. Prepare Taxes: There are always lots of individuals and businesses willing to spend a few hundred dollars a year to have someone else prepare their taxes. That someone could be you. There are a lot of resources out there to learn tax preparation and all its complexities.

31. Become a Wedding Planner:

It just takes one wedding to get started. Have a friend getting married? Help them plan it,  get pictures, create a sweet portfolio, and market yourself to other soon-to-be newlyweds! Check out How to Become a Wedding Planner here.

32. Become a Photographer: If you have a passion for capturing moments and relationships on camera, becoming a photographer can be a great way to earn extra money. All you need is a decent camera and perhaps some photo editing software, then it’s up to you to drum up clients. 7 Steps to Becoming a Confident Photographer can help you get started.

33. Web Design Services: For non-tech people (myself included), web design can cause a lot of stress. And stress means opportunity.  If you have a knack for web design or web development, you should definitely be capitalizing on it.  And since it’s such a foreign concept for many, it can be a really lucrative side hustle. You can find all sorts of gigs on Upwork. Also you NEED to read this article: How to Make $5000+ a Month Building Websites Part-Time

34. Interior Design Consulting: Have a knack for making a room “pop”? You can start a local interior design side hustle, create an Instagram following, and grow your audience and clientele online. LearnVest has a great interview in their article Entrepreneurship 101: Building an Interior Design Empire.

35. Edit College Admissions Essays: If you are smart about your marketing and focus on targeting parents, you can make a lot of money in this niche. Most parents are more than happy to pay for an extra set of eyes on their kids’ writing.

36. Develop an App: Ok, obviously you need some pretty serious technical chops to pull this off, but it can be a very worthwhile endeavor. If you aren’t a coding ninja just yet, though, don’t despair.  Here are 3 Options for Creating Mobile Apps Without Coding.

37. Buy and Sell Domain Names: Jeremy Green registered in 2011.  When Hillary announced that Tim Kaine would be her running mate in 2016, all of a sudden that domain name became pretty valuable. If you’re interested in buying domains, check out HostGator.

38. Advertise on Social Media: Do you have a ton of followers on your personal Instagram, Twitter, or any other social media? “Influencer Marketing” is becoming really popular these days as brands are looking for more authentic ways to connect with their target audience. Gary Vaynerchuk has a Udemy course on building your personal brand, which I highly recommend. There’s also this (free) Step-By-Step Guide To Becoming An Influencer In Your Industry.

39. Test Apps and Websites:  Companies want to know how easy their websites are to use and the information you give them about the process is extremely valuable.

  • Whatusersdo – Pay is $8 (or more) per test. Tests take around 15-20 minutes (you need a Mac or PC + mic).
  • Enroll – Get paid to test websites before they are published. Earn cash rewards.
  • UserFeel – This company pays around $10 per test.
  • Analysia – Tests take around 15 minutes to complete. Pay is $10 per test.
  • TryMyUI – Tests takes around 15-20 minutes to complete. Pay is $10 per test.
  • Loop 11 – Test takes around 10 minutes to complete. Pay is $5 per test.

40. Rent Out Your Car: Think of this as Airbnb, but for you car.  By listing your vehicle on Turo, you can earn extra money by renting your car to people who need a vehicle.

41. Sell Your Old Textbooks: Use eBay, Amazon, or your local college bookstore for this.

42. Help Google Improve: Get Google’s Screenwise app here.  If you don’t care about letting Google know what you do on a daily basis, you can get free money. They use the information they gather to help them market and increase the functionality of their advertising programs when targeting users that are similar to you.

43. Sell Your Recycling: Used glass bottles go for a few cents each in many places.  That can add up quick, though, especially if you find a way to scale up your collection efforts.  Here’s a List of Things You Can Sell at the Recycling Center.

44. Do Event Staffing: Want to attend fun sports events, concerts, etc. for free AND get paid? Look into temporary event staffing gigs.  SnagAJob is a good resource for finding these kinds of (very) part time jobs.

45. Be a Search Engine Evaluator: Leapforce is always looking for people for this work at home role. Search Engine Evaluators “conduct research, evaluation and feedback on search engine results by measuring the relevance and usefulness of web pages in correlation to predefined queries, by providing comparative analysis of sets of search engine results and various other techniques.”

46. Grocery Shop for People: Busy people who don’t have a lot of free time like to outsource tasks. Grocery shopping is one of them.  Enroll with service like Instacart and earn extra money by grocery shopping for people.

47. Snow Removal: Self explanatory. But instead of just knocking on doors once the snow falls, try to get a few “clients” to reserve your services before the snow hits. If there’s a nice little storm coming, make a Facebook status and tag everyone in your neighborhood.

48. Data Entry: It’s not fun work, but there is always some money to be made in data entry. Especially if you are fast and accurate. You can find a ton of data entry jobs on Upwork.

49. Walk Dogs in Your Neighborhood: Pretty self explanatory. If you really wanna go after it, though, check out The Balance’s How to Start a Dog Walking Business.

50. Babysitting: Probably less fun than walking dogs, but hey.  You’ll probably get paid a bit better for this one, though, since you’re caring for an actual human being.

51. Place Ads on Your Car: Believe it or not, there are companies out there that will pay to essentially use your car as a billboard.  MoneyPantry has a good informational article on “car wrapping.”

52. Deliver Newspapers: Pick up the phone, call your local paper, and see where they need help. Do it.

53. Find Odd Jobs on Craigslist: If you can sift through the scams on Craigslist (you shouldn’t have to pay any money upfront for anything. And don’t fall for the nude modeling ads…it’s probably serial killers posting those), there are a lot of legitimate odd jobs that can help you earn extra money.

54. Exploit Facebook “Yard Sale” Pages: Most towns have at least one Facebook group dedicated to buying and selling unwanted stuff (similar to Craigslist). Every now and again I will go through those pages, and I can almost always find something that is way undervalued. Buy low, sell high!

55. Get Paid to Watch Online Videos: Sites like Swagbucks ask you to watch certain videos and like them. You have to watch for a certain number of minutes which you’ll be told ahead of time.  They even give you $5 just for signing up.

56. Sell Custom Designed T-Shirts: I recently stumbled upon a really neat website,, where you can design t-shirts and sell them online. If you can come up with some cool designs and use Facebook ads to target exactly who would love your designs, you can definitely earn extra money with this side hustle.  How to Make Facebook Ads for Selling T-Shirts.

57. Sell Your Hair: My hair is about a quarter inch long so I’m assuming this is a no-go for me, but you might have better luck. Check out HairSellon’s Hair Price Calculator here.

58. Trade Baseball Cards: Or Pokemon, or whatever else you’re into. If you are knowledgeable on the value of certain items, you can flip a quick deal! How to Make Money Selling Baseball Cards.

59. Enter Online Contests and Giveaways: Use a separate email address for when you register for all of these so you don’t drown in the spam. has a list of a bunch of current sweepstakes.  Have fun.

60. Crowdfund: If worse comes to worst, you can always just ask for money.  Be creative, though!  Like the kid who held up a sign during College GameDay asking his mom for beer money.

61. Rent Out a Room in Your House:  Have a spare room in your house that you’re not using? Try renting it out on Airbnb.

62. Do Chores for People:  Sign up with to help people with daily household chores.

63. Become a Brand Ambassador: This is a really popular one for college age students.  Check out Budgets are Sexy’s Ultimate Guide to Making Money as a Brand Ambassador.

64. Join a Focus Group: Think of this as taking surveys, but on steroids.  Companies are willing to pay consumers to provide feedback on products or share thoughts on a new idea. Often this is done through focus groups, which usually compensate members for their time. and are two really good websites where you can find focus groups near you.

65. Flip Things on Craigslist:  There are always mispriced things on Craigslist!  This is just like garage sale-ing.  Check out the 10 Best Things to Buy and Sell on Craigslist.

66. Maintain Yards in Your Neighborhood: Depending on where you live, there can be a pretty strong demand for this type of thing.  If you don’t mind getting your hands dirty, this is definitely something to consider!  Read more about the Pros and Cons of Starting a Lawn Business.

67. Become a Tutor: Students will always be willing to pay for extra 1 on 1 help, which means there will always be opportunities for work.  Here are some tips for how to market yourself as a tutor and get clients.

68. Become a Ghostwriter: Content is what drives web traffic.  Websites are always pumping out fresh, new content for their readers, and they are always looking for writers! If you aren’t quite ready to launch your own blog yet, this might be a good option to see if writing is for you.  Here’s a great article from The Write Life on How to Become a Ghostwriter.

69. Become a Virtual Assistant: Online business owners are always looking for help with online tasks (myself included). There are a wide range of services a VA can offer, from graphic design, blog editing, responding to emails, etc.  Learn more about Becoming a Virtual Assistant.

70. Become a Translator: Upwork always has gigs open for translators.  If you are bilingual, put your skills to use and make some extra money!

71. Launch Your Own YouTube Channel: Your topic area can be literally anything. From pranksters filming their antics, to chemistry professors sharing their how-to videos, anyone can make money from YouTube. Here’s a list of 10 Ways You Can Make Money from YouTube, courtesy of

72. Sell Crafts on Etsy: Have an arts and crafts hobby?  Start earning money from it! Use Etsy to sell your own handmade stuff.

73. Start a Podcast: Maybe your writing isn’t all that great, but you are a great conversationalist. If you have a topic you’re passionate about, why not start a podcast? As your audience grows, you can land some pretty sweet sponsorship deals. Here’s the complete scoop on How to Start Your Own Podcast.

My Advice for People Looking to Earn Extra Money

Do something that actually matters.

Create something valuable.

Help someone else live better.

We only get one life, and it shouldn’t always be spent trying to make a quick buck. That’s why most of the ideas on this list are things that you can run really far with if you like the activity enough.

Even if it’s a mundane task like walking dogs, you could start the next (or only) full service dog walking and grooming service in your town, where dog owners rave over your business and always refer you to others. You can hire other dog walkers as you grow, and turn your side hustle into a sustainable enterprise. You just have to do the work, and do it well.

Do the little stuff (surveys, apps that pay you, etc) to get a few extra bucks, but always be thinking about how to level up your life and create a ton of value for people (who will then pay you). We’re huge fans of entrepreneurship, as it truly is one of the best ways to escape the 9 to 5 that you hate.

Two Last Questions

Which of these ideas on this list are you going to try out?

How are you going to leverage the money you earn into even more success?

The post Our Best Ways to Make Money: 73 Ideas to Make 2017 Your Richest Year Yet appeared first on VTX Capital.

This post first appeared on VTX Capital, please read the originial post: here

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