Working for myself from home is something I’ve been thinking about for many years. After almost twenty years of working in various offices, I feel that I would be well suited to working from home. I understand there are pros and cons to working from home, as there are for working elsewhere from home, but I think that the flexibility would suit me well, not to mention the motivation that would stem from working on your own behalf.
I began looking at the various options for this, and have come up with those I feel are most accessible to most people, and utilise the transferable skills most of us have learnt through our regular jobs or studies, or which can be learnt easily through short courses or online tutorials. Hopefully this will help you if you’re considering working from home.
The obvious one here is blogging, but this could be blogging for yourself or writing posts for companies. You can also become a freelance writer on many sites where people pay for your services, such as People Per Hour, Textbroker and Freelancer.
You might even have a burning desire to write that novel you’ve been planning for years. Anything you write, be it fiction or a self-help guide, can be sold online through your own blog, website or a site like Amazon.
Many people these days are able to make a living through setting up an eBay shop or their own shopping site. Plenty of sites such as Etsy also allow you to sell your own products, so if you craft, paint or can design blogs, to mention just a few skills, you can reach a wide shopping audience worldwide this way.
You could also sell your services; for example, advertise your availability as a pet/house sitter, iron people’s clothes for them or set up a cake baking business. If you have specific expertise, this could also be your window into setting up your own business. Trained skills like bookkeeping, HTML, CV writing, translating or life coaching will be something you can sell to others.
Direct Sales opportunities are everywhere these days. A couple of the most well-known are Avon and The Body Shop, but there are many other options with reputable companies out there. If you are in the UK take a look at the Direct Selling Association’s website.
There are vast opportunities to use your organisational and administrative skills to earn money through freelance work. Virtual assistants work from home for a company or companies, and can act as PAs, travel consultants, proofreaders, copyeditors, website experts, researchers, transcribers…you name it, you can do it. As well as the freelance sites listed above, check out Upwork, Elance and Clickworker.
If you have a website or blog you can advertise on it to earn extra money. Google’s Adsense is a well-known way to place relevant ads onto a blog (you earn money when people click on the ads), but you can also sign up to become an advertising affiliate with various companies, either directly or through an affiliate network. This can work in different ways; for example, in the same way as Adsense which generates Pay Per Click revenue, or by paying you a commission every time someone buys something through the ad link. In addition to this, you can offer advertising space on your site for companies to buy from you.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to option for working from home. I’ve already started a distance learning proofreading course and will sign up with the freelance writing sites above to start trying to generate some extra income on the side of my regular job. I’ll detail my successes (or failures!) with this in future posts.
I would be interested to hear if you have made the leap to working for yourself, or if you are just starting out with this, and any hints or tips you might have.