Do you need money in a hurry? We’re sure someone told you that there is no such thing as free money while you were growing up. While that’s true to a certain extent, the era of digital technology and e-commerce presents numerous opportunities where you can earn a few bucks on the side.
If you spend hours in traffic or waiting in cues, why not be productive with your time and earn some extra money? We live in a world where the cost of living keeps rising, but salaries stay the same.
This economic environment makes it harder and harder to save, with statistics showing that more than 60-percent of millennials live paycheck to paycheck.
We decided to give you a break and share these creative ways to make money – practically for free.
Whether you’re a college student in need on a few extra dollars, or an employee looking to add to their weekly earnings, these strategies can earn you cash quickly and boost your income.
What You Need to Get Started
- 1 What You Need to Get Started
- 2 Work with Market Research Firms
- 3 Take Online Surveys
- 4 Survey Junkie
- 5 Get a Payout with Pinterest
- 6 Earn Points for Gift Cards
- 7 Get a Freebie with Ebates
- 8 Inbox Dollars Pays You $5
- 9 Get $50 from Nelson Digital
- 10 Score Some Swagbucks
- 11 Trim Your Spending Habits
- 12 Earn Playing Trivia
- 13 Sign up for a Credit Card that Offers Rewards
- 14 Install ShopTracker and Earn $39
- 15 Use Seated for Reservations
- 16 Rack Up Rebates from Retailers
- 17 Use Paribus for Refunds
- 18 Sell Your Selfies
- 19 A Final Thought
All you need to start earning straight away is a mobile phone and an internet connection.
Most of the ideas we’re going to discuss payout through PayPal, so it’s beneficial to have an account set up on the platform before you get started.
PayPal is an easy signup process, which includes a verification step. However, you should be able to get everything sorted out within a few days.
After that, scroll through these ideas and sign up for as many as you can.
Work with Market Research Firms
There are brands and companies online that value tour opinion as a consumer. As a result, there are plenty of online market research firms looking for qualified candidates for research projects.
These company’s pay you points for answering questionnaires related to their products. You then take the points and cash them out for money through your PayPal account. Some firms also offer redemption with gift cards for sites like Amazon and eBay.
Most of the questionnaires take under 10-minutes to finish, and you receive your points immediately upon completing the assignment. Expect to earn anything from $3 to $10 for some market research surveys.
Signup for market research is typically limited to Americans only, with some firms including international candidates in developed markets. If you live in the emerging economies, you may not have access to these sites.
Completing market research questionnaires is a fun way to kill time on the subway or bus, and you get the opportunity to complete surveys at your own pace. You’re not going to pay your rent with this tactic, but it’s an easy way to earn an extra $100 to $200 a month.
Take Online Surveys
Online surveys are very similar to working for market research companies. All you need to do is sign up for a free account, and apply for the mailing list. The site notifies you when there are new surveys available, and you answer the questions if you feel like taking part in the study.
Most of these surveys gear toward the American market and more than 80-percent of survey firms will only accept American Candidates. Some of the internet’s favorite survey sites include Survey Junkie, Swagbucks, Vindale Research, Pinecone Research, and iSurveyWorld.
Payout terms vary from firm to firm, but you can expect to earn anything between $3 to $15 per survey.
Survey Junkie is the most well-known platform which will pay you for taking surveys. They have been around for over 14 years and are the leader in this area. You can take surveys and complete other assignments to earn points which can then be redeemed for real money via PayPal.
Get a Payout with Pinterest
Are you a Pinterest junkie? Then make some money out of your social media habit by signing up for the referral plans on offer. Sharing affiliate pins can earn you some outstanding fees from other Pinterest members who sell products on the platform.
All you need to do is drop an affiliate link in your post, and when someone clicks it, you earn a commission. Commissions vary depending on the product on offer, but it’s easy to make a few hundred extra dollars using this strategy.
You aren’t limited to how many affiliate links you can drop, so there is a substantial opportunity to scale your business into a serious money maker.
Earn Points for Gift Cards
Register for free on Mypoints. This company offers its members points for completing almost any activity you can think of online. From online shopping to surveys, Mypoints awards you points which you redeem for gift cards and cash back. You can cash in your gift cards at leading retailers like Amazon, Nike, GameStop, and Best Buy.
We like the fact that the points are actually worth something, unlike other points systems where you need hundreds of thousands of points to win a small prize. With Mypoints, you can pick up a gift certificate to Applebee’s for only 790-points.
Get a Freebie with Ebates
We love Ebates, and they offer a $10 signing bonus for opening an account. The platform has tons of daily deals with top retailers on anything from electronics to furniture. Make a $25purchase through the site, and you earn your $10 signing bonus, with retailers like Walmart, Groupon, Kohl’s, and Amazon all being on the approved vendor’s list for the site.
The site offers daily deals online with discounts of up to 40-percent on some popular products. Ebates also runs promotions for discounts at physical retail locations as well.
Inbox Dollars Pays You $5
Inbox Dollars is another site where you get paid for doing a range of activities online, from browsing the internet to playing games, answering questionnaires, or taking surveys. Inbox Dollars has plenty of tasks to keep you busy, and it’s relatively easy to earn an extra $30 a month doing simple tasks on your phone in your spare time. The site awards new sign ups with a $5 gift card to use as they please.
Get $50 from Nelson Digital
All you need to do is install the Nelson Digital app, and they pay you $50. That’s a far cry from the traditional model of selling apps, where developers charge the consumer for the tech.
With Nelson Digital, you can reap the rewards for allowing Nelson Digital to track your online behavior. The company collects user data from its app users and uses it in market research whi9ch it offers to companies for a fee.
The Nelson digital app is not an invasive software, and you don’t have to worry about privacy leaks or your data falling into the wrong hands. Some months, Nelson Digital can give away up to $10,000 in prizes.
Score Some Swagbucks
Do you enjoy shopping online, playing games, and watching videos? Then you need to register for Swagbucks right away. This company pays you for tasks you already do online. Earn Swagbucks and redeem them for gift cards at top retailers, or cash out your earnings through PayPal.
Signing up to the platform is free, and considering it’s a company that’s paying you to do things you already love, it’s like earning money for nothing.
Trim Your Spending Habits
This virtual assistant saves you money. Download the app for free and use it to minimize your spending habits. Trim tracks your spending and automates the process of saving money in your day-to-day activities. Trim identifies areas where you are bleeding cash and offers advice about cutting service charges that you don’t need.
Trim tracks the best deals on a wide range of services, including car insurance, providing you with the best deals available. The functionality of the app helps you to tackle your debt pragmatically, showing you where you’re spending money that would be better staying in your bank account.
Read: Trim App Review: Lower Your Bills and Cut Unwanted Subscriptions Easily
Earn Playing Trivia
If you are the family genius when it’s time to gather around the “Trivial Pursuit” game board, then you’ll love the SwagIQ app. SwagIQ let you take your trivia knowledge to the bank by offering you the chance to take part in a live trivia show where you have the opportunity to earn dollars from the comfort of your armchair at home.
Download the app and tune in for the weekly game. The app presents you with a series of questions, and if you get all of them right, you earn a cash prize. Get any of the answers wrong, and you lose out on the money – but that’s life.
Sign up for a Credit Card that Offers Rewards
Does your credit card company offer a rewards program? If they don’t – then cancel your card and change to a company where you can earn bonus points for swiping your card every time you make your purchase.
Credit card companies offer anything from free plane trips to discounts on rental car hire and rewards points you can use for electronics and appliance purchases online.
Install ShopTracker and Earn $39
Another shopping app tracker that offer bonuses for installing their tech is ShopTracker. This company works under the same model as Paribus and Nelson digital, where you grant the app permission to track your purchases throughout the month.
The app does not store your personal information, and if you allow the app to monitor your purchases, then the company pays you $39 for every year, you have the app installed. That’s $3 a month for doing nothing.
Use Seated for Reservations
Are you headed out for a night on the town with the family? Download Seated and use it to make your reservations for dinner after the movie. Using Seated, you have the opportunity to save up to 30-percent on your meal at participating venues.
While the company doesn’t pay you out with a cash refund, they issue you points that you can use to redeem gift cards for use on sites like Amazon and Starbucks. Currently, Seated is only available in selected States across the U.S, but they have plans to expand in 2019.
Rack Up Rebates from Retailers
There are numerous mobile apps like Checkout 51 and Ibotta that let you cash rebates for goods you buy regularly. If you’re headed out to Walmart to buy some groceries, download the app before you go.
Use the Savings Catcher app from Walmart, and then take a picture of your receipt with your phone after making your purchase. The app goes through online listings of your purchases and presents you with the lowest prices on your products available at retailers in your area.
If the app finds the products at a lower price, then Walmart issue you a rebate for the difference in your spending.
Use Paribus for Refunds
Don’t you hate it when you buy something online, only to find it available for a lower price at another retailer? Install the Paribus app on your phone, and you can get your money back with minimal effort.
All you do is install the app and shop online as you usually would. The app scans your purchase confirmation emails for prices and then compares it to other retailers in the market. If the app finds a better deal elsewhere, it helps you get refunded.
Use Paribus to help you save money if you shop on Amazon, Target, Walmart, and plenty of other leading retailers. Paribus also provides the same service for hotel bookings, with partners like Priceline, Expedia, Booking.com, the Hilton chain of hotels, and the Marriott.
Read: Paribus Review: App to Take Advantage of Savings & Refund Policies from Online Retailers
Sell Your Selfies
Are you a selfie snapper? Then you’re going to love “Pay Your Selfie.” This company pays you money for shooting selfies of yourself at different locations. The company then sell the images to marketing forms for use in their campaigns.
Taking the pictures is as easy as snapping a selfie and sending it through the app. The company pays you $1 for taking a selfie of yourself at home for your first shot. Who thought it would ever be possible to earn money with selfies?
A Final Thought
Ok, so no-one is going to hand you dollar bills for noting in this life. However, the tips mentioned in this guide are the closest thing to free money you will find online.
When you consider the minimal time and effort required to earn some of the bonuses on offer, it’s a valid way to make extra money – and you can do it from the couch while you’re watching the finale of Game of Thrones.