Economy can be unpredictable. Having a reliable job or an established business can both have their downs in a bad economy. But when you face an unexpected turn of events, there is always a way to earn money through a second source. Then there are scenarios where you can’t afford a steady and strong financial life with a single job. In an economy like today’s, especially in Pakistan, having a part time income resource or making money online from the comfort of your home is a great proposition.
Whether you don’t have a job these days, or you’re a housewife who isn’t able to go out and earn for her family or you can be a graduate looking for an internship or just a student who wants to pay for an education. For some, earning money online can be equal to filling the financial gaps or for someone like me having an online job is the career to be in.
Pakistan is rated among the cheapest labor available globally with a population who can speak English. India is in that list too. Businesses in US, UK, Australia and Canada outsource fresh graduates for call centre jobs and look for experienced professionals who are willing to set up a small business.
What you need to get started
- A lot of patience. Earning income online is easy, but earning good amount of money can be challenging sometimes. Some months can be really good and some can be just fine.
- You must have some know-how about computer and internet. You can’t have a stable online earning source if you don’t have the basic knowledge to operate a computer or how the internet works.
- You must understand English at least at a basic level. Having proficiency in English communication is always a plus.
- Consistency and hard work. Earning online can be easy, but maintaining the financial flow requires consistency in work and an attitude that shouts hard work.
Ways to earn money online
I have been in this industry for the last 5+ years. I had my highs and lows, dealt with scammers, went through some minor losses and sometimes I had amazing experiences working online. I am sharing a list of ways that can be useful if you want to earn money online from home. I have tried most of these ways or have seen my buddies making profits out of them. For Pakistani students, these can prove to be very beneficial if they want to make part-time or full-time careers out of them along with their studies. I have sequenced them from basic level to professional level online jobs.
- Blogging: First things first! What you are most passionate about? Never start a blog in which you might lose interest later. You need excellent English communication skills to start your own blog. It can be a news related blog, or a product/service review or celebrity blog. Post jobs, funny images/videos, write about latest trends or technology updates.The pitch point is that you are blogging about good ideas. Stay away from plagiarism. Take inspiration but don’t copy content from other sites. Use Google AdSense or InfoLinks to put up ads on your blog and start earning. Don’t rush and wait for 3-4 months till the volume of visitors increases to more than 1000 per day. Money starts coming in once you reach your target.You can check our complete guide on how to set up a WordPress blog with almost no effort.
- Earn through Data Entry: Data entry is considered to be among the biggest skills you can have to earn money online. It is also listed as the top most jobs available online in terms of projects volume. It’s all about typing and you may need some basic level English and computer skills to get the job done. Data entry jobs take a lot of your time. Some reliable sources can be Freelancer, Elance and Upwork (formerly Odesk).
- Become a part of Market Research groups: Market research is like the bread and butter of an advertising agency in Pakistan. Contact some local or large companies or research agencies and become a part of the focused groups. You have no idea how much they value your opinions.
- Fill out some survey forms: Similar to focused groups, survey research is another medium of earning money online by providing your opinions. Those surveys can be related to products/services or academic research forms.
- Refer products/services and get paid: Earn money online via participating in referrals. Good income can be earned along with bonuses if you have a strong network of people and know someone who might fit the job perfectly.
- Ever thought of selling photos: You don’t need to be the famous Tapu Javeri to do the job. Sometimes the most usual or unusual things miss a photo like coffee cups, road signs, etc. You can submit these images at various sites like Shutterstock or iStockPhoto.
- Become a reviewer: Often we eat at a restaurant and say ‘Oh my, this was the most tasteless thing I ate’ or when using a smartphone you say stuff like ‘I love how the camera works’. There are a number of websites who actually pay you to review products. Some people may hire you to review their own products/services on several review sites. The most popular websites includes Amazon and eBay.
- Become a travel agent: No, you won’t have to sit in an office to do that. You can reserve and sell tickets to customers from your home. I used to work for a travel & tours company who hire sales people and let them work from home. After all, you just have to sell the tickets online.
- Arts and crafts: Love making jewellery from stones or crochet? Are you a crafty person? Or have some interest in making paintings? Either way, you can make stuff at home and sell them online via OLX, Facebook or the new boss in town Instagram.
- Telemarketing: Are you good in sales and can communicate with people in US, Ireland or UK in their native language? Telemarketing can be the right job for you then. Reach out to companies looking for a resource like you and sell their products and services, be it a call or an online chat. Meet your monthly targets and earn the sales commission with basic pay. Earn up to PKR 50,000 to 1 lac a month. TRG Pakistan would be the perfect example to state here (one of the leading BPO companies in Pakistan for offshore outsourcing).
- Freelancing: The best alternative to blogging is freelancing. Sites like Freelancer and Elance provide a number of job postings that you can choose from. From writing articles and academic reports to designing websites, optimizing keywords on search engines, coding and building mobile apps. In Pakistan, top websites like Rozee, BrightSpyre, Bayrozgar, Mustakbil, HerCareer are bringing employers and talent together to do what is needed.
- Work for a Publishing house: Best option for housewives and females looking to flourish a career for them. News publishing houses like DAWN, Tribune, TheNews and TechJuice are always looking for talented writers who have a flare for creative writing. Build your profiles and apply today.
- Academic Write ups: Do you know that students all over the world hire people to work on their assignments and thesis projects? Have you recently graduated or have done business administration? Why don’t you help these students out and earn money too? Some of these students are willing to pay PKR 10,000 per assignment. Polish your writing skills and get started.
- Become an accounts consultant: We have a number of B.Com and MBA degree holders in Pakistan. And now a high volume of students in ACCA. Not everyone gets to work with best firms in Pakistan. So why not use those skills online and earn money from home. Advice managers how to manage their accounts, and keep the cash flow good. You can also be a consultant in some other field you are an expert in.
- Video Tutorials: Youtube, DailyMotion or Tune.pk are good option for you if you are making quality videos. Review smartphones, tablets, or laptops and make video tutorials. You can earn money from home via making some videos too.
- Affiliate Marketing: Once you have a good blog ready, you can also join an affiliate network or affiliate partnership with someone (for instance, Amazon) and earn money whenever someone is redirected to a link and buys a product through your blog.
- Design a website: If you are a designer by profession already or you can simply register for short courses to learn professional website designing. Either way you can create an opportunity to earn income from home. Both small and corporate level companies hire freelance designers to work on their logos and websites. And trust me, mostly freelancers come up with some brilliant and outstanding designs. Photoshop has become one of the most commonly used weapon of choice when it comes to web designing.
- Web development: Universities are stressing towards offering advanced courses on web development. Using html, CSS and PHP, students and professionals can make ways to build a better future for them. Build a website from scratch and use programming languages like CSS, HTML and PHP and tools to earn you some good amount of cash.
- SEO: The rate of having diploma in SEO is high in Pakistan and for the same reason companies don’t prefer hiring them. One of the reasons stated by my CEO recently was that they have weak English communication and vocabulary which puts a company at a very bad place. But then there are some experienced SEOs and SEMs who are doing a tremendous job in lifting up page ranks and providing quality results with targeted keywords on Google’s top searches. Content marketing and SEO go side by side. It’s a plus if you know both well. Social Media Marketing is another major part of SEO and content marketing.
- Design a mobile app: Mobile app is like the ultimate accessory for any product or service now days. It’s one of the highly paid online jobs and if you are familiar with the process of designing and developing a creative and unique app. Well, you just hit the jackpot. Did you know NASA called out all the smartphone app makers a few weeks ago to design an app and win $1500?
Out of all the above, my favorite ones are 10, 11 and 12. I made a career out of them. All 20 different ways mentioned above vary from one another. Most of them can be found on freelancing sites like Freelancer, Elance, Odesk (aka Upwork). Pakistani job platforms also enlist most of these sources of income. OLX Pakistan also has a vast listing of online/internet jobs but not all of them are from reliable companies or people.
- Be aware of scam sites. Yes, you won’t believe but there are more scamming sites out there to hunt you than reliable clients paying competitive salaries.
- Get your research work properly done. Don’t be desperate, don’t be blind. Always look for site reviews, google your client’s name or company he/she represents.
- Mark a target for yourself and set your work policies straight. Never work for full in advance before getting paid, or get paid in advance.
- Payment gateways should be agreed on from both sides. Paypal (not allowed in Pakistan yet but still can be used), Skrill, Payoneer, Bank wire transfer or others; make sure both parties agree to one of them. Don’t work outside the freelancing websites. Avoid that or you might be fooled. A friend of mine faced PKR 100,000 loss recently because he made the mistake of dealing with the client outside the primary source of Freelancer.
Share your experiences with us if you have been trying any of the above earning methods. Leave comments to add more ways to earn money online from home.