By Holly Hammersmith
You’re already working a full-time job, but you’re trying to hustle on the side. Maybe you have debts to pay off, are saving for a dream vacation or need to bank cash for a home improvement. Whatever the reason, you see the appeal of making money online.
And who doesn’t? The internet has grown the economy and seems like a friendly place to do business. You can work from the comfort of your own home and set your own hours.
But before you jump in, do some research and make sure the “opportunities” at hand are legitimate. Some ways to earn money online should be avoided simply because they are risky, illegal, dangerous or unprofitable. Beware of the following:
TAKING SURVEYS FOR PENNIES
Online surveys are abundant. Some you are asked to take as an act of kindness or to provide feedback for a product or service. If you come across surveys guaranteeing you will make good money in hardly any time, be wary. Often these surveys do pay, but at what cost? Is it really worth 30 minutes of your time to make $1? You might be better off working at minimum wage. For a good-paying survey, look for a focus group or a qualitative research study.
SELLING ANY PIRATED MATERIALS
Pirated e-books, CDs and Hollywood blockbusters on Blu-ray can be found and downloaded online, often for a small fee. Sounds enticing? Think again. Selling, or just downloading, pirated materials can land you in big trouble with your internet provider and local, state, and national authorities. Just don’t go there.
SELLING CLICK-BAIT LINKS
Many bloggers make a good living from ad revenue, affiliate sales and more. But they don’t buy or sell click-bait links, the links that go nowhere, to the wrong site or just plain spam up your browser. There’s little money in these bottom-feeder games.