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Are there legitimate ways to make money online?

That’s the question I had and I’m sure many other people are wondering.  Being retired, needing to make  money and with some time on my hands, I decided to try and find the answer.

As you search it becomes evident that there are a lot of offers on how to make money fast.  The lists of people trying to sell you their books, methods or tricks on how to do this are endless.  Being a baby boomer, I’ve been around long enough to know that if it looks too good to be true it probably is, so I am hesitant to hand over my money for any of these.

After doing many searches and a lot of reading, I can tell you that “yes” there are legitimate ways to earn an income online. Although not all are a good fit for everyone.

If you have something to sell and/or resell you can do so on sites like eBay, Amazon or Craigslist along with many other selling and auction sites. If what you are selling is handmade there are esty, made it myself or art fire to name a few.  If you have a talent or skill to share you might do tutoring or teach someone a language.  Something like playing an instrument is another thing that can be done online.

So what if you don’t have anything to sell or a talent that can be taught online?  In most cases you will need a vehicle for these but sites like TaskRabbit, wegolook and others will match you up with someone that needs a short task completed.  If you have an iPhone there are apps like Gigwalk and iPoll where you can find jobs in your area.  There are companies that will pay you to take customer service calls in your home. You may need a dedicated phone line and headset which in some cases you may have to pay for yourself.

I personally don’t have any experience with the previous job opportunities so I can’t make any recommendations.  It’s possible that some of these are not legitimate but from the information I’ve gathered I believe most are.

Although there may be more ways to make money online I decided to try earning income by taking surveys from home.  I was a little skeptical at first (it just seemed too easy).  Once I registered with a couple of survey sites I realized that with no initial investment, I was suddenly bringing in money, although at first it was just a few cents at a time.  Most people will not get rich doing this and you have to be patient enough to stick with it for 2 or 3 months before it even seems worth the time.  If you are willing to stick with it those pennies will start to add up to dollars in no time.

Where do you start?

A couple of things you should consider doing before signing up at survey sites.

With all of these survey sites the absolute minimum information you are required to give is your name and an email account that is active.  Many times you are not able to start earning until you have verified your account. Be sure to give a good address where you will get the email because you want to get the link that will activate your account.  You might check you spam folder for the email is you don’t get the email in a reasonable amount of time.  What I would suggest is to either check with your internet provider and see if they allow you to open an alias or throw-away account.  Another option is to use a free account that is set up only for this purpose. (e.g. google, hotmail etc.) One thing you don’t want to do is give them your main email address.  There’s always a chance that you start getting spam.  I have yet to run across this but you never want to take that chance.

Although most sites give you an option to earn merchandise or gift cards I believe most people would rather have cash.  In this case your options are usually limited to either a cash card or they will deposit your winnings into your PayPal account.  Occasionally you will run across a site that will pay you by check but that is the exception rather than the rule.  I prefer going with PayPal so you can combine earnings from several different sites which gives you more buying power.  It’s also nice to have all you earnings go to one account so that you can see the balance go up faster.  Makes it easier to stick with this, especially in the beginning when it seems like you’ll never make much money.

Once these 2 things are done, you are pretty much ready to start signing up and taking surveys.  Feel free to use the links under “survey sites I use” or go to my “Links” page.  Those are good sites to begin with to start earning that extra cash that we can all use.  Don’t forget to use the RSS posts feed to subscribe to my future blogs and reviews where I will discuss the best sites and ways to get the most from them.

What do all survey sites have in common

The one thing that all online survey websites have in common is that either while registering or soon afterward you are asked to fill out a profile page.  Your profile is used to match you up with the available surveys that you are most likely to qualify for.  Your profile may consist of as little as your name, age and email address up to a 200 question form to fill out.  According to most survey websites the more complete your profile is, the better your chances of being matched up with a survey that you will qualify for.  Always keep these up to date with any changes.