Edited by Alison Carminke
I know, I know – a lot of people back off when they hear about “online jobs”. They are sometimes seen as dubious and untrustworthy, compared to traditional jobs.
But let me tell you this: times have changed and thanks to digitalization, new opportunities have emerged.
More and more people are starting to work online because it gives them the freedom and independence to live a self-determined life. No more bosses who tell you when, where and how to work – those people decide for themselves how much, with whom and especially where they want to work.
Because working online requires only two things: a laptop and a wifi connection. As soon as you have these things you are good to go.
But with all the things that have changed recently – what exactly can you do online? What kind of jobs are out there now? Today I want to show you some of the most popular online possibilities, so that you too can start living independently.
Online jobs generally fall into two sectors: freelancers and online entrepreneurs. Keep reading to find out the difference between them, and 5 online jobs in each sector.
What is a freelancer?
A freelancer is self-employed and gets paid for each project or piece of work they do for a specific client. I myself started out as a freelancer, because it is the easiest way to get into this online business world and to earn money straight away. To be exact, I worked as a virtual assistant because it was simple to start there.
As a freelancer, you set an hourly (or project) rate and get paid in accordance with the hours you put into the work. Rest assured, there are many companies looking for people with specific skills to complete a project for them.
Let’s have a look at what you can do as a freelancer:
1. Virtual Assistant
This is a very popular online opportunity at the moment. As a virtual assistant you take care of clients’ administrative work from the comfort of your home. And as more and more businesses are in need of a helping hand, this is the best opportunity to get started in the online business world. With a phone, a laptop and the internet you are set to provide a meaningful service to your customers, saving them precious time so they can focus on their core business.
Interested? I highly recommend the free 5-day VA challenge and paid courses provided by Hannah Dixon of Digital Nomad Kit. I started out with Hannah’s challenge and course, and they helped me to win my first VA customers.
2. Graphic Designer
Are you a creative person who loves to design things? Great, then this online job just might be the perfect fit for you. As a graphic designer, you create logos, packaging, and advertisements for your clients and their brands. This position is also highly in demand.
3. Web Designer
If you are a tech-savvy person with knowledge of systems like WordPress and SquareSpace, have a look at this great freelance opportunity. Your main challenge in this role is to stay on track with the latest trends in website appearance to keep and win more and more customers. However, don’t worry: if you have a strong base of knowledge, a simple Google search can easily get you up-to-date.
If you have an eye for detail and a flair for words, then these might be great options for you, as well as being among the best-known freelance opportunities. You can get paid per article, writing for other blogs or sites, or you can also write ebooks for your clients and specialize in topics you know well (i.e. fitness and health). Just keep your eyes open and discover the endless possibilities that are in this field.
If you know how to write for SEO, you can charge a higher rate for this work.
5. Social Media Manager
Social media is unquestionably an essential feature of modern marketing. Many people are looking for freelancers to take care of their social media because it takes a lot of time to get the ball rolling here. So if you know how to handle Facebook groups or manage Instagram accounts, this is the right position for you.
What is an Online Entrepreneur?
In contrast to freelancing, you could work as an online entrepreneur. That primarily means that you create passive income streams by selling either digital or physical products. You’re no longer exchanging time for money in the same way as a freelancer does.
Here are my top 5 online entrepreneur opportunities
In coaching, you support your clients in specified areas of their lives and in their goals and encourage them to make progress. This is a great way to put your previous life experience to work and help other people who are dealing with the same situation.
While working 1-on-1 with clients is more like freelancing, you can put together online courses on your topics of expertise and voilà – here comes your passive income stream.
It is easy to set up your own online store with a third-party store or by yourself with tools like Woocommerce and Shopify. With dropshipping, you don’t even need a warehouse to store the goods. Dropshipping allows you to sell products (which you buy from your supplier) to customers, and then your supplier delivers directly to your customer – you never even touch the physical product.
3. Selling Info Products
A great way to make money online is to sell info products like ebooks, online courses or tutorials. An info product is any knowledge communicated through text, videos and audio. It helps people to master or learn a new skill or to expand their knowledge in a specific area.
This is great if you already are an expert in a certain field – because everything you know, you can sell online.
Ok, this online business option is a little bit tricky. Many people think if they start a blog they can quickly become successful and make a ton of money. The reality is: It takes a lot of hard work until you can live off your blog and this is no recipe to become successful overnight.
If you love sharing your insights with other people, and you’re willing to put in the hard work, this can definitely work out for you. But I would always combine it with another option like selling info products.
5. Affiliate Marketing
Ever heard of this? Amazon Associates is a well-known example. Affiliate marketing means partnering with another company to promote their products online. Every time your visitors buy an affiliated product through your promotional links, you receive a small payment from the partner company. It takes some time to build a stable income with it because first, you need to create a web presence with a good number of followers who are willing to buy something. This goes perfectly with a blog or social media influencer account, for example. But once you establish your presence, you can earn a monthly 4-figure income through your links.
Just remember, you must include a transparent disclaimer on your website if you have any affiliate links.