How to Make Money

Put Your Skills to Work and Earn $100s

March 27, 2013
by The Penny Hoarder
Contributor

Do you enjoy writing? Do you design websites or graphics as a hobby? Are you someone with an eye for design? If so, you can put these talents to work and earn hundreds of dollars.

Identifying skills that have market value isn’t terribly difficult but turning those skills into money can be a bit of a challenge. This is especially true if you’re relying on the traditional job market as your sole source of income. If you have a skill that’s in demand, it’s a great time to take advantage of the plethora of freelancing sites that have cropped up over the past few years. The following sites offer fantastic opportunities to boost your income in your spare time, and they could provide enough opportunity that some day you’re able to kick the 9-5 to the curb completely!

Elance

Perhaps the freelancing opportunity giant of the web, Elance is a global platform for freelancers to post their skills and find companies who are looking for people to hire. It’s a one-stop shop for freelancers and companies alike: Profiles are posted, reviews are available and payment is securely processed through the site. According to Elance, there are approximately 500,000 businesses and 2+ million individual freelancers using the service (the latter of which have earned over $700 million!).

Posting a profile as a freelancer is free and the site is filled with helpful tips and useful templates to help you stand out from the crowd. Once your profile is approved and live, you can search the millions of business postings and submit your proposal for how the work could be completed. Once an agreement is set between yourself and the company, you can track progress using Elance’s shared Workrooms to designate timelines, milestones, etc. You can earn an hourly or flat rate depending on the type of work and your individual preferences. While it’s free to post your profile, do note that Elance automatically charges an 8.75% service charge when payments are made to the freelancer.

If you’re interested in this option, click here to sign up today!

99designs

This site is a personal favorite of mine as I have used it in the past to score some awesome logos, graphics and card layouts. Basically, 99designs is an online portal where you create a design “contest” for whatever graphical needs you might have. Freelancers compete to “win” the contest, thus getting paid by the company who posted the contest.

As a designer, you can set up a free designer account and search the thousands of open contests for one to submit your ideas to. If the company likes what you’re proposing, they’ll choose your design, thus making you the “winner” of the contest. Once they agree to use your work, you do transfer the copyright to them, but you’re paid handsomely; anywhere from $149 for business cards to upwards of $5,000 for in-depth ads/websites/layouts.

If the idea of competition scares you, take comfort in knowing that the majority of these contests has less than 20 designers submitting their work each time. That’s great odds for your success and, at the very least, you’re earning valuable experience, honing your craft and networking with other designers/companies!

If you’re a designer at heart and want to give this a try, click here to create your account.

 

Good luck, Penny Hoarders!

 

by The Penny Hoarder
Contributor for The Penny Hoarder

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