Becoming a WAHM: Using your talents to make money
It’s probably one of the most searched subjects in Pinterest, and that’s merely a guess based on the incredibly high number of posts advertising easy money from home. Bringing home the bacon while being able to also stay home with your children is a win-win in everyone’s eyes. Whether you took an income loss by leaving your full time job to stay home or your family could use a little extra income to play with, bringing in some money can add to your overall feeling of security when your current job is raising your children — which we all know is the hardest job, boasting no pay, but high rewards. But, what if you could spend your time at home with your kids doing something you love anyway, with the added bonus of making some money from it? There are so many sites and opportunities to showcase your hidden talents, your inherited skills, and your passionate hobbies that can make bringing in some money from home worth it from all aspects.
With Multi-Level Marketing and direct sales opportunities, taking endless amounts of surveys, or website reviews offering to help make up the difference, it’s hard to determine what is worth your time and effort, what will benefit rather than take away from your family, and how much of your efforts will really pay off in the end. Making some extra money month to month is of course a bonus, but there is always a cost. If your children are too small to go to school and need your undivided attention, spending hours filling out surveys just to help pay a grocery bill may not be worth the amount of time you lose with your spouse in the evenings or sitting your child in front of the television. Some direct sales businesses do offer to bring in a great deal of cash, but you also have to count in the amount of time you will spend networking, marketing, and pushing product. Is the take-home enough to cover the effort, the time spent away from other daily duties, and the very high possibility that it won’t all be able to be done during nap or bed times?
While some make those money-ventures work, others have found an extra source of income in their everyday hobbies, passions, and interests. Luckily, in this technology-era we live in, where everything we could possibly want is at our fingertips, and social networking has pretty much eliminated the need for retail space, business cards, or even physical office space, stay-at-home moms have the access necessary to turn their interests into full-blown businesses while never changing out of their pajamas. Would you like to join them?
Selling Your Words
Blogging and Social Media Management have become a large new sector of the writing world, allowing those with various writing styles and skills to publish work instantly and reach millions of readers. Maintaining a personal blog is always a great way to get your foot in the door, by not only showcasing your creativity, writing, and technical skills, but also adding crucial networking connections. Some bloggers even branch out from their own blog and become contributors to big name online publishers, which can pay upwards of $100 per post.
While starting your own blog could eventually bring in some money if done right, there are plenty of companies that reach out to others to write and manage their own blogs. Or, if blogging isn’t your thing and you’d rather venture into copywriting, marketing emails, content marketing, or advertising, there are a number of sites that can get you in touch with employers on the lookout for creative minds.
Sites like BloggingPro offer blogging tips, WordPress help, and a job board where you can skim and apply for blogging jobs that interest you. Much like looking through the wanted ads of newspapers, job-searchers can pick and choose which jobs to apply for. While the competition may be high, starting small and slowly building a portfolio and reputation can help you land the bigger jobs in the long run.
If you already have some writing experience and have the work to show it, setting up a profile on Upwork might be a great place to look for writing gigs as well. Through Upwork, you can apply for various jobs, not just limited to writing, from top rated companies by simply attaching a cover letter and linking your Upwork profile that details your credentials. While Upwork does take a small percentage of your compensation earned from each job, it’s still money in the bank and easy networking.
While we tend to think of Craigslist as a means of selling our old worn out furniture or kid’s clothing, we shouldn’t overlook the job opportunities offered there as well. Freelance writing gigs are posted daily, many from small, local companies needing help managing their social media accounts, content editors, copywriters, proofreaders, and so on.
MediaBistro is unique in that it not only offers a job board for writing (and other media related) services, but it also provides short courses to help you build your skills. Perhaps you have some experience in content marketing and just want to brush up on your skills, or you have never ventured into the world of copywriting but want to get started; for anywhere from $49 to $159, you can take a course to help get you started. Resume need a boost? Forgot how to write a convincing cover letter? Is your LinkedIn profile weak? MediaBistro has services for all of that, too!
Other online writing jobs of interest:
Selling Your Goods
Have a hobby? Can you create something that others might be interested in as well? Perhaps you created a front door wreath, crocheted mittens, painted your garden pots, or can fire up a kiln. No matter what your skill, you can probably make some money from doing what you love. Maybe you left a graphic design job to stay at home? Thanks to Pinterest, graphic design is a major seller when it comes to custom stationary, prints, party supplies, and much, much more. And thanks to technology, most graphic designers don’t even need to have printing availability – simply providing a digital copy to the customer is the growing trend.
Most well known for selling homemade goods, Etsy is the go-to for sellers and buyers to build an online retail shop that reaches millions with just a click of the mouse. Showcase your work, build reviews, promote your shop, and even receive support in managing your business. According to Etsy, 24 million buyers spent more than $2.3 billion on home made goods and products from their site last year.
While Instagram doesn’t sell directly, showcasing your work on Instagram is a great way to get interest in your goods. Share the creative process, post in-the-moment shots of your creations, build your brand aesthetic, and boost sales with giveaways or coupon codes. With the availability to grow a large following quickly, Instagram is a great place to build an audience, gain consumers, and promote growth, of course by linking it directly back to your online retail shop.
Featuring the same concept as Etsy, sellers can post their goods for sale reaching consumers across the globe. One cool feature about Artfire, though, is the ability for consumers to post a “wanted ad” for custom work. Creators can pitch their abilities to meet the needs.
Unlike Etsy, all of the products sold on this site are 100% handmade by the seller without the possibility of contributions from outside manufacturers. This move by Zibbet evens the playing field, and consumers know that their products are truly handmade by the seller, one of a kind, and unique. Zibbet also promises no listing or commission fees for its basic membership.
Selling Your Services
Having a marketable talent or even the ability to work well with others can open doors to financial freedom (or at the very least, money in your pocket). Whether you’re good with a camera, can bake a delicious cake, soothe a baby with ease, or have a knack for organizing, there are jobs that can be done mostly from the comfort of your own home.
With some talent, a portfolio, and determination, you can offer your services to individual families or even commercial companies. Photography is a booming business. Thanks to social media, people are always looking for professional photos to boost their online marketing appeal or show off their newborn infant to family and friends. Some sites, like Shutterstock, allow photographers to sell their stock photography — everything from photos of buildings, animals, food and drink, beauty and fashion, and so on. So, get clicking!
Personal Virtual Assistant
Simply by searching the job site Upwork or job hosting sites such as Indeed.com, or LinkedIn, you can find ads for companies or individuals looking for a personal virtual assistant. Help manage emails, upload content to social media, organize and manage Ebay listings, manage schedules, and even those looking for someone to simply plan an upcoming trip. The list goes on of the tasks people need help with. If you’re dependable, organized, time efficient, and like checking things off a list, being a personal virtual assistant might just be your best bet for bringing in some extra income.
An obvious and easy transition from SAHM to WAHM is by offering in-home childcare services. Maybe you are really good with children, or you even have a degree/experience in early childhood education; put that knowledge to use to make some extra money doing what you do everyday anyway, engaging with your child. Short of becoming a daycare, simply advertise that you are interested in babysitting one or two children in your home. You can set your hours, decide the number of children and ages you are willing to take on, plus the cost of your services. Advertising to local friends or signing up on sites like Care.com can help you manage your needs and wants.
Can you bake a delicious cake? Are your decorating skills above average? Since the boom of cake decorating shows on television, baking has become a huge seller. Selling your services out of your very own kitchen can bring some extra money into your pocket. Advertise your business by word of mouth and social media, and you are sure to keep jobs rolling in when a party is in the works.
Do you have knowledge in something that can be taught to others? Are you highly educated or simply trained in a skill that others would like to know? Whether you simply want to tutor a certain subject, teach a college course, or a creative course, the Internet is full of possibilities. There are a number of sites and opportunities that are looking for teachers to teach their skills to the general public from the comfort of their own home. Skillshare is a popular site that allows those with specific knowledge and creative ability to teach a course to others in that same realm. Skillshare helps you to design, publish, market, and earn revenue from your course. If you are looking to teach in the academic world (and have the education to support it), searching job sites for online tutoring services or online adjunct instructor positions at community colleges and online colleges is a great start. Online course offerings are a hot commodity and adjunct instructors can be paid upwards of $2,000 to $3,000 per course a semester.
When devising a plan to make some money from home, intimidation can be a huge factor in keeping you from making the leap. With so many sites offering to bring in money and a lot of competition, fear often serves as a roadblock. Just remember, people pay others to do for them what they can’t, so don’t question your talents or let intimidation set you back. You may have something that others don’t, whether that’s a skill or a certain style, simply the time to get something done, or the determination that others lack. Keep moving forward and know that everything worthwhile takes time. And in the meantime, continue to enjoy being home with your children.
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