8 Alternatives to the Amazon Associates Program

Most internet marketers get started by marketing products via affiliate networks. One of the first that most newbies come across is Amazon’s Associate program.

This is a huge opportunity for most people, as Amazon is a worldwide powerhouse when it comes to selling, well, pretty much anything and everything.

There are a bunch of reason why people love Amazon’s affiliate network, and sadly a bunch of reasons why some people don’t.

Amazon Associates is awesome because…

It’s a Trusted Brand Worldwide

Amazon operates worldwide and has sites in numerous languages and currencies. Its brand recognition is up there with Google and Coca-Cola, and in general most people are positive about Amazon as a company. This means a heck of a lot of people shop with them, like millions, daily.

It Has a Huge Selection of Products

I’m pretty sure that if you can’t find something on Amazon it isn’t sold anywhere… Well not quite, but Amazon has a vast selection of products, some that it sells direct and others sold by third parties.

The sheer number of products listed is so high, some affiliate training advises you to use it to find niches!

Unless you are trying to promote something obscure, it’s very likely Amazon will sell it.

It’s Easy (and Free) to Sign up to

The ease at which you can sign up to the Amazon affiliate program is astounding. Lots of other networks require you to fill out complex forms or have your site audited prior to acceptance.

Not so with Amazon. You can be signed up and promoting in a matter of minutes.

Another plus, is that unlike some affiliate networks, Amazon doesn’t cancel your account for simply not performing well.

It has Tools and Reports

From banners and widgets that you can add to your site, through to monthly reports on your commissions, Amazon has a lot of built in features that can help you to see how you’re doing and where improvements could be made.

The tools aren’t perfect, but they are quite good and free.

Bonus commissions

Regardless of why the visitor went through your link, whatever they buy while in the cookie time you will get commissions for. This means that even if they decide not to buy that 42” Hi Def TV, but instead opt for buying a toilet, you still get commissions on that sale!

Amazon Associates kinda sucks because…

You live in the wrong area

That’s right, if you live in Arkansas, Missouri, Maine or Rhode Island you’re screwed. Due to various legal wrangling, the Amazon associates program doesn’t allow residents of those states to apply.

If you do just one thing wrong

Being an Amazon associate means you have to agree to their terms and conditions.

If you somehow manage to get on the wrong side of these (easily done as they update them regularly), then you will get your account banned.

That’s right, say good bye to your money and your income in one fell swoop.

Its cookies are bad

Most affiliate networks use 30 day cookies or longer. Amazon’s are 24 hours. This is incredibly short, so if your pre-sell didn’t work, you could lose out on commissions if the person decides to buy a few days later instead of right now.

Its commissions are poor

Amazon’s commission rates aren’t bad, but they aren’t great either.

You start out on a flat 4% commission, and depending on your monthly sales, this could peak at 9%. Certain products like electronics are always at a flat rate (e.g. 4%) regardless of sales volume.

Compare that to most digital based products who offer anywhere from 20% to 100% and you can see that really Amazon’s rates could be better. To be fair they do have higher overheads, but from an affiliate’s point of view, it means you need to sell more, in order to make a decent profit.

Alternatives to Amazon

Her are 8 different sites where you can make affiliate commissions. Some of them are very similar to Amazon itself, and others require a different viewpoint, but are none the less still potentially profitable.

#1 Walmart

While not having the worldwide reach of Amazon, Walmart puts up a pretty good fight. They too sell a wide variety of products from books to boats. Their commissions are a little bit lower than Amazons, but they have a 3 day cookie!

#2 ClickBank

One of the bigger marketplaces for digital goods, Clickbank offers a decent selection of products. Of course, the products on offer won’t suit everyone as they are generally information products or software. Their cookie length is 60 days and commissions range from 10% -100%

#3 ShareASale

This marketplace for affiliates has a large selection of different vendors, from digital products through to physical products, each of whom you can apply with to promote their goods. Cookie lengths and commissions vary from vendor to vendor.

#4 CJ Affiliate (Commission Junction)

Another well-known and varied affiliate marketplace, CJ has vendors from hosting to 4 Wheel drives and everything in between. Once again, commissions vary from vendor to vendor, as do cookie lengths.

One thing to note about CJ, is that they are harsh towards inactive accounts and will close them.

#5 Rakuten.com (Buy.com)

One of the “new” kids on the block, Rakuten has been around a while but you simply may never have heard of it.

It’s pushing into Amazons space and sells a wide variety of products from books to clothes to electronics.

Its base commissions are better than Amazons at 6% though it’s not that great for electronics as this is only 1%.

#6 Infolinks / Skimlinks / Viglinks

These three sites are not your standard affiliate network. Instead of promoting a specific product, these services add links into your content that show pop up adverts.

They are very similar to Google Adsense in that you earn money per advert clicks, but as the adverts are shown as popups from within the content, banner blindness is reduced.

#7 eBay

Perhaps the Amazon of second-hand stuff, eBay has a huge market share, and sells virtually anything.

Sadly, the cookie length for eBay is only 24 hours, and their commission structure is a little weird. Instead of earning a flat rate, you earn a percentage of what eBay makes on the auction. You can earn anywhere from 50% to 200% (for new buyers) on their own fee.

This does make working out commissions hard, but with the number of people using eBay there’s still a decent chance of making a profit with this affiliate program.

#8 Direct Affiliation

Lastly, there is also direct affiliation, which is my term for joining individual affiliate programs from smaller merchants.

While this has the advantage of spreading the risk around (one banned account and cancelled affiliate program won’t immediately ruin your business), ti does require a lot more work.

Not only do you have to find the affiliate programs, but you need to monitor each one, often from different logins.  And then there’s monitoring links on your site!

While this option is certainly valid, if you do go down this route, I’d recommend using a link manager like Pretty Links Pro.

Bottom Line

It doesn’t matter if you can’t use Amazon due to living in the wrong place, being banned or just wanting to keep your options open, there are plenty of alternatives out there.

From large scale operations like Walmart, to smaller individual sellers, you can find affiliate programs for virtually anything, and they normally match or improve on Amazons commissions and cookie times.

As such, don’t let not being able to use Amazon stop you from earning money as an affiliate!

Make Money this Summer by Being a Camp Counselor

How would you like to go camping this summer, meet new people, find easy childcare for your kids, and make money at the same time?

This is all possible if you become a camp counselor.

According to the American Camping Association (ACA), summer camp enrollment is increasing by 10% every year. Many camps have been in operation for over 100 years; for example, the famed Camp Dudley has been around since 1885. Also, while many camp counselors work full-time, almost 30% are part-timers during the summer (or other seasonal) months.

If you’re worried about being stuck alone in the woods with a bunker full of screaming 4-year-olds, fear not. Camps are typically staffed with at least three counselors, two of whom are full-time counselors. Also, there are many camps that are intended for young adults, not youngsters. You can also choose to work at day-only or overnight camps.

How much money do camp counselors make?

The ACA reports that, on average, seasonal camp counselors earn the following:

  • Camp counselor: $225-$250/week
  • Head counselor: $300-$330/week

Who are camp counselors?

Many kids who go to summer camp eventually return to that camp as a counselor. Other counselors might be elementary education teachers-in-training, pastors, or Boy/Girl Scout leaders.

A good majority of camp counselors are under 30 years of age; many are college students looking to make some extra money and/or secure free room and board until the start of the school year. Other counselors have young children of their own attending the camp, and become counselors as a way to keep tabs on their kids while earning a paycheck.

So, if you got youngsters at home and are wondering what to do with them this summer, becoming a camp counselor could be one way to affordably send your kids to camp- and even enjoy camp with them.

What do camp counselors do?

Generally speaking, camp counselors plan and manage camp activities, maintain a regular daily schedule, answer questions and resolve issues, ensure personal and group safety, and perform select administrative duties (e.g., distributing mail).

On a more detailed level, a camp counselor’s day may involve the following chain of events:

8am: Wake up all campers and ensure all campers have breakfast.
10 am: Coordinate a trail hike/group swim.
12 pm: Ensure all campers have lunch.
1 pm: Manage an arts and crafts/sewing/carving/music session.
3 pm: Attend staff meeting to plan upcoming event.
4 pm: Organize and manage camp archery competition.
5 pm: Fill out daytime camp log and punch out.

If you are trained in a particular activity or proficient in a hobby- for example, astronomy- you will probably be called upon to organize and lead a night of stargazing. Alternately, you might wish to organize a night of stargazing that is based on your personal talent for locating certain constellations.

What kinds of summer camps are there?

You might choose to work in summer camps that are organized around a given theme. To this end, you might try out the following camps:

Academic: These camps accept honors and gifted students for outdoor fun as well as rigorous scholastic studies. To qualify, you should have subject matter expertise in at least one school subject, such as math, robotics, biology, etc.

Themed: There are camps organized around activities such as running, yoga, sewing, music, etc. To be considered for a themed camp, you’ll need to be proficient in its main activity.

Scout: It goes without saying that the Girl and Boy Scouts have camps. But if you’re a Scout member, you already know that fact.

Special needs: Children with physical and/or mental disabilities require extra staff and activity considerations and may be a good fit for you if you have additional certifications to work with special needs children.

Where can you find summer camp counselor jobs?

The ACA lists many summer and seasonal camps nationwide on its Find A Camp database. This is a great place to start if you want to select a certain type of camp (e.g., daytime only). Once you have selected your preferred camps, make some calls and find out from the staff if there are seasonal counselor openings.

Here are some other online resources:

Camp Channel: Here’s you’ll find a job board that lists all kinds of positions available at camps across the country, from sports coaches to swim instructors to camp nurses.

Camp Page: Summer camp jobs are listed by American state and Canadian provinces here, along with in-depth job descriptions and salaries.

CoolWorks: You can browse various job openings here throughout the country. The site also provides you with detailed information about employers and their application process.

Glassdoor: Here you are presented with a plethora of summer camp information, including hourly/seasonal pay, employee reviews, and current job openings.

Summer Job Finder: This site advertises multiple summer job opportunities, including those in camp counseling.

The Bottom Line

If you’re looking to make extra cash this summer and “park” your youngsters in a safe place, summer counselor positions enable you to do that. You’ll apply your skills, meet new faces, and collect a stipend. Do a good job, and you’ll most likely be invited the following summer at a minimum 4% raise.

7 Ways to Make More Money with Fiverr

Fiverr is a website that allows anyone to buy and sell services, with prices starting at just $5 bucks.

The website covers a wide variety of services, from logo creation to testimonials, translating articles to signing Happy Birthday in a thong, and a lot in between.

From a seller’s point of view, Fiverr allows you to make money from basically micro services which mean low overheads and potentially a large market as the site is very popular.

However, Fiverr also takes a 20% cut of earned fees and also charges for withdrawing earnings.

With that in mind, the most successful sellers on Fiverr need to plan ahead to make sure the maximise sales while reducing potential costs.

To help you do that, here are my top 7 tips to make more money with Fiverr.com.

#1 Keep Your Gigs Quick

This has to be the number one tip out there! If each gig takes you 30 minutes to do, then you’re only going to earn $8 an hour before taxes.

Whatever it is you decide to do should ideally take you less than 5 mins to produce as allows you to earn up to $48 per hour or more.

Anything longer than that and you should consider charging more per gig than just the basic fiver.

#2 Offer Similar Gigs

Expanding your portfolio is something all Fiverr sellers should do. You don’t need to branch out into different topics and niches necessarily; instead you can simply offer different variants of what you already do.

For example this writer offers various services that are basically the same:

Fiverr Portfolo

The benefits of expanding your portfolio are actually really great:

  • More portfolios = more SEO opportunities as people search for different terms
  • More portfolios = more chance of being found on the site
  • More portfolios = more options for your potential customers

Just keep the number sensible otherwise you could be inundated with orders that you can’t possibly keep up with.

#3 Offer Incentives

Another idea to not only get more customers but retain existing ones is to use incentives.

Offering more than your competitors is one way to do it, but that can quickly escalate into a fight to provide the most for the cheapest and that’s not good for anyone.

Instead offer realistic incentives, such as bonuses when multiple gigs are ordered at the same time, or advising people who have purchased a gig that if they buy more you will give something extra.

For example if you offer to write 400 for one gig, you could offer 500 words for repeat customers.

#4 Write a Decent Pitch

Your gig is your advertisement, and you should treat it with as much respect as you would any customer you get.

As such you need to make sure that it’s well written.

Title

The title is the first thing a prospective client looks at, and as such it should sum up what you offer in a concise way.

Instead of writing “I will provide an article”, write I will provide a 500 word article on any subject”.

If your gig has something unique, try to get it into the title.

Blurb

The blurb compromises the bulk of your gig explanation.

It should be written in a way that someone reading it should walk away knowing exactly what they get for their money and anything that they can’t get.

Adding in all the benefits of your gig in a bullet point is recommended.

Having things you won’t do listed clearly is also recommended, as that way the customer knows exactly what they can and can’t get from the gig. Honesty here is the best policy.

Be Professional

Keep your gig professional and make sure that you check spelling and grammar. Coming across as professional will separate you from half the Fiverr crowd in a heartbeat. Poorly worded, badly spelt listings will simply turn people away.

#4 Use Extra Gigs and Packages

Fiverr has allowed extra gigs for a long time and you should be using them to maximize profits.

If possible an extra gig should add value for your customer, but not add too much time to you completing the job.

Packages are newer, but allow you to set much higher prices for your services. This is great news for sellers as you can finally start pricing things at a respectable level, especially if you already have a following and a five star rating.

Fiverr packages

#5 Make Use of Images and Videos

Whatever your service is, you can provide examples. Whether these have been done just for showcasing purposes or are previous works, you need to show people what they are likely to get.

Not only does this help you find the right buyers, it reduces the possibility of cancelled and refunded orders.

Make use of both images and videos as these again allow you to cater to a wider audience.

#6 Market Your Gigs

By listing on Fiverr.com you are already increasing your chances of being found, just like with any marketplace.

That doesn’t mean you should leave it to chance though.

At the very least share your gigs on social media, promote new gigs, and advertise offers and so on.

The more you share the higher the chances of more people finding and purchasing your gigs.

I’ve even heard of some Fiverr sellers promoting their gigs via PPC (paid for advertising) though this is risky as your margins are already small. However if you can get decent rates, there’s opportunity to be had advertising like this.

#7 Keep Your Customers Happy

The final piece of the puzzle is perhaps the most important, even more important than offering quick gigs: keeping your customers happy.

Keeping customers happy is paramount in a service driven business like Fiverr. The reasons for it are:

  • Happy customers become repeat customers
  • Happy customers give you 5 stars
  • Happy customers provide detailed reviews
  • Happy customers don’t cancel or refund their gigs

As you can see, keeping your customers happy is very important. How then can you do that? There’s obviously no magic bullet and some customers will be unhappy no matter what, but there are ways to minimize unhappy customers:

  • Reply to pre-sales messages quickly
  • Keep your customers updated, especially if there will be delays
  • Make sure you ask questions before you start so you have a clear idea of what the customer wants
  • Avoid delivering late!

The Bottom Line

Fiverr.com might not earn you much per gig, but with the right tactics you can turn Fiverr.com into a little goldmine!

Is Martin Wilson’s Zip Nada Zilch Worth Your Time?

How would you like to make $80-$100 several times each day without having to sell anything or pay money up-front?

That’s the claim put forward by Martin Wilson, who offers a free online income opportunity called Zip Nada Zilch (ZNZ). The opportunity itself is listed through the URL Cash2Flow.

Once I clicked on the URL, I watched the following video where Martin introduces ZNZ, an income-generating system that is not only free to join, but which supposedly generates multiple daily payments of $80-$100.

znz

Even better, this system requires no selling or network marketing- yet somehow directs multiple payments from third-party product sales into your Paypal account. This is shown by Martin several times in the following introductory sales video:

znz1

So, how exactly does ZNZ make you $80-$100 multiple times per day?

How ZNZ works

When you sign up to ZNZ, you are encouraged to sign up to sales offers and trials provided by merchants like Intuit, Direct TV, GoDaddy, etc. Once you sign up to a sufficient number of these offers and trials, you qualify as an Internet-based referral agent for ZNZ.

What does this mean?

It means that you can now access and use the ZNZ portal to make referral commissions by getting other people to sign up for ZNZ-presented offers. To this end, you receive a referral link and access to marketing videos. You can also create a free website through ZNZ to market the business and its affiliated merchants.

You are encouraged to post your referral link on your personal website, blog and social media network, and to even email that link to your subscribers.

There are two commission earning levels in ZNZ:

ZNZ One: At this level, you make a $20 commission from every person who signs up through your link and fills out merchant offers.

ZNZ BigCash: At this level, you make $60-$80 commissions from your sign-ups.

The ZNZ One level is fairly easy to achieve- you simply complete several free trial offers through ZNZ and you qualify to make those $20 referral commissions.

The ZNZ BigCash level requires an up-front investment of about $10 to complete a sufficient number of paid trial offers in order to qualify for higher referral commissions.

In effect, ZNZ operates as a high level affiliate marketing network. As one of its members, you promote ZNZ offers to people via social media, your website, etc. When those people sign up to ZNZ using one of your affiliate links, you collect a commission.

Is ZNZ worth your time (and money)?

Affiliate marketing is a viable way to make money both actively and passively. There are also many upon many products that can be promoted through affiliate marketing, including products that you yourself make and offer.

Unfortunately, ZNZ has limited potential as a long-term affiliate marketing system, and here are my reasons why:

The products hold limited value.

Many affiliate products have significant inherent value in and of themselves, so selling them as an affiliate is rather easy. You can publish a case study, for example, on how an educational program helped someone achieve success.

With ZNZ, however, the products are things like subscriptions to cable or hosting or video services. While ZNZ products aren’t junk, you won’t be creating quality content around them either. That means you’ll also have a lower possibility of ranking well in online searches.

You must complete sales offers.

To become a commission-earning member with ZNZ, you must complete free and/or paid trial offers that you would normally not fill out. You must then convince other subscribers to also fill out these offers.

If you want to avoid being charged, you must track when you signed up for your offers and cancel them before your trial period ends.

Compare this with being a subscribed member to a single affiliate product that you can test at will and interview others about regarding their experiences.

You don’t control the product offers.

Martin explains several times in his instructional videos that ZNZ’s offers change over time. This is bad for you as an affiliate because any content you create for the products is bound to become null and void after a period of time. Likewise, because ZNZ depends on third party entities for affiliate offers and earnings, it’s highly likely that one day, this site could fold up and close without notice.

The free website isn’t versatile.

It’s true that you get a free website through ZNZ- however, the website template cannot be customized and is of low quality. That means that online traffic will be tricky to generate and direct. Likewise, how will you generate landing pages, call-to-actions, etc. with a website that can’t be customized?

The Bottom Line: ZNZ just isn’t worth the hassle.

ZNZ is not a scam- but it’s also not worth the time investment as a major affiliate network. There’s limited product marketing potential, limited optimization for search engines, and limited versatility in sales messages. You are better off investing your time and money with other affiliate marketing platforms.

How to Prepare for Retirement as a Freelancer

Being a freelancer offers you many benefits, including a flexible work schedule, the option to work from home, and a range of interesting projects that excite rather than bore you.

However, there are some detractions to the freelance lifestyle, including not planning and saving for retirement.

Many employed workers are given the benefit of a 401(k) or other retirement savings plans, which provide them with employer contributions and other incentives to set aside money for retirement. Freelancers doesn’t have that benefit, so they often end up spending the majority of their earnings on bills, education expenses, etc. Likewise, because freelancer earnings are more volatile than those of employees, it’s hard to maintain a set retirement allotment.

As a freelancer, how do you prepare for your own retirement? Here are some steps:

Retirement planning for freelancers

1. Understand the “3-legged stool” of retirement.

Retirement funding is typically derived from three sources, which are often referred to as the “3-legged stool.” These sources are personal savings/investments, Social Security and group employer-managed retirement plans. Freelancers typically only have two legs of that stool because they are not employed. Many freelancers have little or no savings, giving them only one leg to stand on- and that’s assuming they have paid enough self-employment tax to collect Social Security and Medicare payouts.

2. Generate a freelancer-managed retirement plan.

Luckily, you don’t need an employer to generate a comparable retirement plan. As a freelancer, you can choose from the following programs to build up that third leg of your retirement:

Simplified employee pension (SEP)-IRA

If you have your own LLC or are otherwise incorporated as a company, you can create and contribute to a SEP-IRA. Per IRS regulations, this type of retirement plan allows you to contribute either up to 25% of your gross income or $53,000 per year.

The advantage of SEP-IRAs is that they can be set up for free, and the only fees you’ll pay is for the trades. Keep in mind that these plans do penalize you (at a 10% fee) for early withdrawal of your savings, which is defined as before the age of 59 1/2. Because the SEP-IRA accepts your gross earnings, you’ll also eventually be taxed on your withdrawals.

Individual 401(k)

As a freelancer, you are your own employer and employee. As such, you can contribute to your own personal 401(k) retirement plan twice- once as yourself (i.e., the employee), and once more as an employer. This has the advantage of enabling you to quickly build up your retirement account.

The IRS states that freelancers can contribute up to $18,000 of their net earnings to an individual 401(k) as employees; freelancers who are at least 50 years of age can contribute an additional $6,000. Furthermore, as their own employers, freelancers can additionally contribute up to 25% of their net earnings.

This reduces your yearly taxes considerably. If you are incorporated, you can also write off your retirement contributions as a business expense.

Keep in mind that, just like with the SEP-IRA, you will be taxed on your eventual withdrawals; also, withdrawals that occur before the age of 59 1/2 will incur a 10% penalty fee.

Roth IRA

Being possibly the most freelancer-friendly retirement account, the Roth IRA takes into account the fact that freelancers often have unstable income and/or need access to cash now. For these reasons alone, you should definitely consider setting up a Roth IRA as your retirement savings account.

To qualify for a Roth in 2016, your adjusted gross income (AGI) must be under $132,000 (or $194,000 if married and filing jointly). You can contribute up to $5,500 per year, or up to $6,500 per year if you’re over 50 years of age.

Because you make post-tax contributions into this account, you are not taxed on your eventual withdrawals from a Roth IRA. Also, you can actually withdraw money from your Roth IRA at any time prior to reaching age 59 1/2 without a penalty– provided you only withdraw from the principal amount. So, if you are suddenly strapped for cash, you have a convenient emergency stash of money that you can access.

Dividend stock plan

While it’s not the typical program you think about when considering a retirement savings account, creating and regularly investing in a dividend stock plan is one additional strategy that you can use to fund your retirement. There are some major freelancer-friendly advantages to such a plan, namely:

You can collect an additional “income” from dividends- or not. Dividend stocks pay quarterly or monthly dividends that you can use to supplement your freelance income when times are tough. During the times when your freelance income covers your living expenses, you can simply re-invest your dividends into more dividend-bearing stock.

You can withdraw the principal and/or earnings at any time. Unlike most retirement savings accounts, your dividend stock plan enables you to cash out some or all of your savings at any time. So, if you have a major financial catastrophe, you can fall back on your stock plan and use it to bail you out of trouble.

Dividend stocks are generally less volatile than traditional growth stocks- but they are not impervious to losing value at least during short-term spans (1-5 years) of time. Thus, you should research which stocks you plan to purchase and understand that you may incur losses at least during the short-term.

What if you still don’t have a retirement plan at age 50+?

If you are a freelancer who is 50 years of age of older, it can seem futile to start planning your retirement now. However, keep in mind that most freelance careers go beyond traditional retirement age and many freelancers work well into their 70’s (or beyond). This is often because, for a freelancer, the lines between passion and paycheck are blurred. Also, because many freelancers work from home, it’s much easier to just take your career with you after you move somewhere sunnier/warmer/cheaper.

So, even if you are older, you can still plan for your retirement and use various IRS “catch-up” rules to grow your nest egg. The key is to start the process and not procrastinate further.

If all else fails and you are still struggling to make ends meet during your retirement years, there are additional ways to make money.

How to Become an Online Adjunct Instructor or Professor

If you have an undergraduate or advanced degree, you should consider putting your subject matter expertise to work as an online adjunct professor or instructor.

Why?

Online adjuncts teach students from remote locations, such as their homes, and are not required to show up at work. This not only saves them on travel costs, but it also permits them greater schedule flexibility. Online adjunct teachers avoid administrative duties such as department meetings and are not subject to publication requirements.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the job growth outlook for adjunct professors and instructors will be at least 19% until 2022. Many large schools make use of adjuncts to keep up with their growing student population- in many cases, these adjuncts are based remotely and teach via the Internet and/or VPN (virtual private network).

How do you get started as an online adjunct instructor?

You can search for and apply to jobs listed through several different online career sites. The best ones for online adjuncts include the following:

HigherEdJobs- This site easily lists several hundred online-only jobs for adjunct teachers. To find these jobs, click on the online/remote option on the site or use the advanced search feature to narrow your search by subject area and location.

HigherEdJobs

Adjunct Professor Online– This site uses an RSS feed to list new online faculty positions. In the right-hand column of the site is a searchable job board. Use keywords such as “online teaching” to narrow the search results.

Adjunct Professor Online

Inside Higher Ed– This resource lists several dozen post-secondary online teaching jobs through its careers area. Just use the advanced search feature to filter your search for online/remote jobs. You can also create job alerts so that you’re notified the moment a new job is posted.

Get Educated– This site has a dedicated online teaching jobs and instructor positions job board that is updated twice a week. You can also create a free ad that lists your qualifications and experience- these ads are routinely scanned by recruiters when new positions become available.

get educated

Major universities such as University of Phoenix, ITT Tech, Western Governors University, and American Public University frequently list open positions for online adjunct faculty on their own job boards. You can find these positions by filtering your search results using keywords like “work at home,” “remote,” and “telecommute.”

Finally, don’t forget to use job search engines such as Indeed, Monster, and SimplyHired when looking for online faculty positions. The paid job board, FlexJobs, also lists online teaching positions.

How much do online teaching positions pay?

The pay scale for adjunct professors that teach online isn’t too shabby. The typical minimum for any semester-long course is $1,250, and some university semesters are defined as only four weeks long. Graduate courses pay more than baccalaureate courses, and highly specialized courses like advertising or nursing pay more than general courses like English.

The following schools offer these pay rates:

  • University of Phoenix: $1,300-$1,600 for a 5-week semester
  • DeVry University: $2,900 for an 8-week semester
  • National American University: $1,400 for a 10-week semester
  • Upper Iowa University: $2,200 for an 8-week semester

The equivalent per hour earning rate is $55-$70, as shown in this example online teaching position listed on Indeed.

esl

Some online schools pay per “head,” so the more students you teach, the more money you’ll make. Other schools pay you depending on how many students actually finish your course.  Conversely, online colleges may pay you a flat fee for your class, and then a bonus if a majority of your students finish it without dropping out.

Obviously, it pays to apply to several institutions in order to strike the best value for your teaching efforts.

What equipment will you need to teach online?

Typically, the schools that you apply to will already have software in place that will help you create your online course material and teach. If you’re camera-shy, you needn’t worry about being “taped” because the majority of your lessons will take place through video screen-sharing of your computer whiteboard, not your face and/or body.

Unless you are generating a completely new course from scratch, most schools will supply you with a course syllabus, lessons, textbook and even student study guides and homework materials. You will not only be encouraged, but even required, to contact fellow faculty for advice and discussion about lesson plans and student exams.

So, your absolute requirement is to have a fast Internet connection at home and a relatively new computer. As for the software, it is typically accessed via a VPN connection to the online university’s network.

Make even more money with online instruction

Once you become adept at teaching an online course, you can create your own personalized version of its subject matter and offer it through several online schools simultaneously. For example, a Spanish 101 course will go through the same fundamentals of language learning in almost every classroom. If you are able to select your own textbook, you might even be able to offer the exact same lessons in the same sequence.

While online universities and colleges offer students the benefits of being accredited by the U.S. Department of Education, there are other online schools that students often go to for basic instruction without accreditation. These places include Coursera, Linda, NimbleMind, and Udemy- all of which offer online courses for sale. Price your course affordably and you could easily make a side income from these sites. This post explains the basics of teaching your own online course.

17 Ways to Make Money During Retirement

When I was younger I used to look on retirement as a long holiday, one where I’d potter around the garden and yell “get off my lawn!” at the local kids.

The stark reality is that retirement is a scary proposition in this day and age. Unless you have invested wisely and successfully, or managed to win the lottery, there is the fear of struggling to make ends meet.

This is why it’s important for any retiree to be aware that making money after retirement is not only possible but perhaps necessary.

Luckily, there are still a lot of opportunities to top up your bank account once retired, and here’s the best 17 ways to do so.

#1 Part Time Job

Picking up a part time job is perhaps the most common way a retiree makes some extra cash.

Now, sure you can go and stack shelves at a local store, but there’s plenty other options out there.

One great way to find work is to follow your passions. You’d be surprised how many would be employers want experience and passion in their employees.

Consider asking for work at your local golf course, wine shop or delicatessen. Whatever interests you, there’s likely a business looking for a customer support staff or sales person.

#2 Temp Work

While not the most glamorous of jobs, temp work is definitely a viable option for a retiree. The work is often in fits and starts, requiring someone with plenty of free time which suits most retirees down to the ground.

Sometimes as well, the temp work becomes more permanent, especially if knowledge, customer satisfaction and skill can be shown to your employer.

#3 Become an Entrepreneur

If working at a J.O.B. makes you feel ill, then there’s always the option of becoming your own boss. Nowadays with the rise of the internet, making money as an entrepreneur is even easier.

There are plenty of ways to learn how to make money online, and you can easily create a passive income that fits in with your gardening, golfing and social activities.

#4 Sell Your Stuff

After a lifetime of earning and spending, most retirees end up with a whole lot of junk lying around. A quick and easy way to make some more cash is to sell it.

A yard sale can work, or a local flea market. If you’re comfortable with computers then places like eBay make for an easy way to offload unwanted knick-knacks.

I do recommend making sure you get the items for sale checked out first though, the last thing you want to do is sell a Van Gough for $5 bucks!

#5 Share Your Business Experience and Consult

What no one tells you when you start your own business is that having someone to bounce ideas off and to learn from is invaluable.

We don’t all have a father or other family member that has experience in business, so finding someone who does can make the world of difference.

This is where you come in. Even if you never owned a business, having decades of experience in an industry can be super helpful to other people.

Consulting with businesses then is a great way to make some cash.

#6 Share Your Knowledge and Coach or Teach

Perhaps your skill-set is aimed at teaching, or you have a skill that others would love to learn. Consider then teaching other people what you know.

You could for example teach people about accountancy, pottery, marketing, golf, fine wine, a language, piano, and so many more skills.

What you teach or tutor in is down to what you know, but you would be surprised how many people are willing to pay to learn from you.

#7 Pet or Baby Sit for Neighbors

There will be plenty of busy people in your locality who are money rich but time poor. These people will need help with looking after their kids and pets, and you with your experience can help them with that issue – for a fee of course!

#8 Show Your Crafty Side

If you know how to make things, whether it’s crochet, wood work, fish flies or hemming dresses, then sell your wares and services.

People will pay for hand crafted items, especially locally produced ones as they infer quality. You can sell your products online or at a local market stall or even on the street (make sure to check your local regulations on that though).

#9 Buy and Sell Antiques

If you have a love for antiquities you can make a tidy profit in buying and selling age old objects.

You may already have some that you are willing to part with, or you may want to start hunting for bargains to sell on at a profit.

Flea markets, thrift stores, yard sales, and storage locker sales are your best bet for finding antiques (both old and retro) that can then be sold at auction, on or offline.

#10 Rent Space

Some retirees end up with a big ol’ house and it’s just you or you and your spouse rattling around in it.

Rather than waste that space, consider renting it out.

You have a few options here:

  • Rent the entire property either all the time or for periods when you’re on holiday
  • Rent out a room to a lodger
  • Use sites like Air BNB to rent out rooms for short periods of time

Whichever you choose, there’s no excuse in having all that space just burning money in the form of heating and maintenance when it can earn you money.

#11 Gardening for Profit

If you have a green thumb, then consider gardening not just for the joy of it, but actually to make money.

You can grow flowers for specific times of the year like Mother’s Day or Valentines, and sell them locally.

You can grow produce and sell it at a local farmers market.

Growing heirloom produce is also a great way to make money as the market is booming because people want new and interesting and organic food, and seeds.

#12 Write Something

OK so that’s a bit vague, but you are a wealth of information, and others can benefit from that.

You could write about yourself and your own varied history or turn it into a fiction.

You could use your experience in your chosen profession and write about that, especially if what you did was a dying art or is still a sought after skill.

If you have knowledge of your areas local history you could make money by writing a history guide and selling it online, or at local tourist points.

We all have a story to tell, so why not tell it!

#13 Become a Local Tour Guide

On the back of local history, if you do know your stuff and your area gets tourists, why not start yourself up as a local tour guide. Start-up costs are minimal, and often you don’t need any special licences (though do check your local guidelines on this).

You could charge a fee, ask for a donation at the end or even work with the owners of a local attraction.

#14 Rent Out Your Expertise

If you’re looking for work and want someone to help you find it, then Rent a Grandma (or Rent a Grandpa!) is a great option.

You are vetted so potential customers know you are safe and can do what is asked of you and the jobs themselves pretty standard: tutors, nannies, caregivers, pet sitters, etc.

These sites simply help you connect with people who may need your services, and save you time and money in the long run.

#15 Refactor Your Investments & Savings

Just because you have money squirreled away, or have invested it, doesn’t mean that that money is actually working for you.

Take some time to review all your savings and investments and refactor where needed.

For example, if your savings account offers poor interest rates, check for other offers out there.

Same thing with any investment portfolio you may have: if it’s performing poorly, cash it out and reinvest elsewhere.

Also, if you investments have a management fee, consider shopping around for better offers as lower fees in the end gives you more money.

#16 Utilize Discounts

If there’s one silver lining to growing old (dis)gracefully, then it’s the discounts you can get!

Most services and a whole lot of stores actively discount retirees. The thing is, not all of them tell you about any discounts they may have.

This is why you should not be afraid to ask them if they have any discounts. The worst they can say is no!

#17 Browse the Web

This is for all the silver surfers out there. Did you know you can make money by searching the web, watching videos and filling out surveys? SwagBucks is a website that has been around for some time (we’ve reviewed it previously) and can legitimately help you make some extra money.

All you need to do is earn points via their website doing things you would normally do online anyway, and you can swap those points for gift cards at places like Amazon or Walmart, or even get money deposited into your PayPal account.

Sure you won’t get rich from it, but that extra cash can certainly help out from time to time, and it costs you nothing to get started.

The Bottom Line

Retiring doesn’t have to be the end of making money, there are still lots and lots of opportunities out there to make a little extra cash and perhaps have some fun and make new friends while you’re at it!

My Review of ‘Paid Surveys at Home’

Completing online surveys as a work-at-home opportunity has been touted quite heavily this year, and several of our reviews have focused on paid and free survey sites.

Taking online surveys will never replace your full-time job, or even your part-time job, for that matter. However, there are plenty of sites popping up with claims to the contrary.

One such site is ‘Paid Surveys at Home.’

The survey sales page is rather short, at least in comparison to other survey sites. The Paid Surveys at Home site also features no big splashy claims about making $3,000/week or other such nonsense. There are some items I didn’t like, however.

1. The potential earnings calculator.

Many scam sites feature potential earnings calculators to give you a dopamine rush while you consider how much money you could potentially earn. Of course, all this money is theoretical, and even the disclaimer at the bottom of the calculator says so. In my opinion, these calculators just waste valuable sales page space while giving you false hopes of big earnings.

Paid Surveys at Home

2. The claims of easy money for little work.

Paid Surveys at Home has sales copy that states the following:

Paid Surveys at Home1

It’s highly doubtful that you’ll make money in just “a few minutes” with online surveys. The basic pre-qualification survey alone often takes several minutes to complete- and that’s just to get you into the paid survey. High paying surveys, which are defined as surveys paying over $2, can take 15-30 minutes of your time. That translates to an earnings rate of $8/hour.

Finally, it takes more than “a click of the mouse” to deposit money into your bank account. Most survey sites have threshold amounts that must be reached before a deposit can be made. So, you don’t see your funds for weeks or even months.

When you fill in your information and go to watch the sales video, you are told that you could, for example, make an extra $1,000/month. Kevin, the presenter, says that he easily makes hundreds of dollars each month with Paid Surveys at Home.

Paid Surveys at Home2

Again, if all you’re doing is filling out online surveys, earning this much money is highly unlikely.

3. Paying a fee for publicly available info.

When you reach the bottom of the sales page, Paid Surveys at Home asks you to pay $68 to sign up to its program. For this money, you are promised access to over 300 survey companies, a bonus called “Get Paid to Drive!”, and another bonus that contains 300+ work-at-home opportunities.

Luckily, there’s a coupon code right on the website that reduces your membership fee to just $34. Even better, if you try to leave the page, your fee is reduced again to $17.

While $17 isn’t a lot of money, it still doesn’t justify the idea of paying money for publicly available information such as this:

paidsurveys

How do I know that such information is offered by Paid Surveys at Home? Because if you click away from the sales page a second time, you are offered free access to the site. The only hitch is that you receive a “Lite” version of the site, sans benefit of the two bonuses.

4. Dubious work-at-home opportunities.

Let’s assume that you are more than willing to pay $17 for those two advertised bonuses. The question is, are they actually worth $17? My thought is no, and here’s why. When you click around the Lite version of Paid Surveys at Home, you encounter these additional work-at-home opportunities:

paidsurveys1

Both the ‘Project Payday’ and Dwayne Brightman systems go to another survey site aggregator called ‘Product Report Card.’ Both systems are hyped up and make exaggerated claims of big money. However, both of these seemingly separate systems only give you additional survey sites.

The ad about how “Paul just made over 1 million dollars” leads to an online gaming site. Online gaming isn’t even defined as a work-at-home job.

If these “jobs” are even a sampling of what you obtain when you pay for the bonuses, you will gain nothing useful for your money.

5. Sparse contact information.

Paid Surveys at Home offers only a ticketing system for contacting “Kevin,” or whomever is behind this operation, in case you have questions or want a refund. A ticketing system is not email, nor is it a phone number. What this tells me is that it’s going to be difficult to get a hold of someone following your purchase of this system.

The Bottom Line

Filling out online surveys just won’t make you the hundreds of dollars you are promised, no matter how much survey sites promise you otherwise. While filling out surveys is a good way to make a few extra bucks, especially when you are in line at the grocery store or on a train, it is not a viable source of income for someone who has a mortgage and/or other bills to pay. Furthermore, many survey site aggregators, including Paid Surveys at Home, charge you money for information that is of low quality or plainly available online.

My advice is to save yourself the hassle and spend your $17 elsewhere.

How to Make Extra Money By Selling Food from Your Garden

If you are thinking about planting, or have already planted, your vegetable garden this year, you can also make a side income by selling your extra produce to others. Several online websites cater to “entrepreneur gardeners” who are interested in selling or bartering off their excess produce.

The Farmer’s Garden

Once you complete your free registration with The Farmer’s Garden, you can use the site to post classified ads of your excess garden produce, homemade goods or gardening tools. Payments occur in person or through off-site third-party sites such as Paypal.

The Farmer’s Garden can also be used to post ads of your unused garden plot. This might be worthwhile if you can no longer garden but would still like to enjoy fresh produce from your own land.

the farmers garden

Zukeeni

On this site, gardeners can register themselves by inputting their names, addresses, and the produce they wish to sell. There are also fields to fill in regarding produce quantity, desired price, and selling time range. Much like Craigslist, you create individual listings for your goods and fill in specified areas with pricing, amount, and other information.

Zukeeni

Payments and transaction locations are set between you and your buyer. Zukeeni does offer Venmo as an online payment option, however. Venmo is kind of like Paypal and can be linked to your bank account.

Zukeeni also offers lots of useful advice and tools to gardeners about what to plant for their geographic region (and when), non-chemical fertilizers and pesticides, watering schedules, planting layouts, and more.

Keep in mind that Zukeeni requires that all sold food be raised organically; i.e., without the use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Prepared foods like jams and canned sauces need to comply with state and local food selling laws.

Craigslist

Craigslist has definitely gained a reputation for harboring unsavory characters that you would not want showing up to your house. Having said that, if you still wish to use this online marketplace, you can team up with a buddy and meet potential buyers of your garden produce either at your home or elsewhere in town. The benefit of this approach is that you’ll encounter a much larger customer base that will purchase your homegrown and homemade goods. Just be careful.

Nextdoor

This site isn’t a gardening site per se; rather, it’s a neighborhood site that helps neighbors communicate with one another about area events, crime and job opportunities. You can learn if your neighborhood subscribes to Nextdoor by searching here.

If your neighborhood does subscribe to Nextdoor, you can create postings that advertise your ultra local produce and offer it in exchange for money or other services (such as lawn mowing while you’re away on vacation).

What’s great about Nextdoor is that you’re more likely to get trustworthy clientele that pay you on the spot and even advertise your produce to others through word-of-mouth. You also won’t have to travel far to deliver your goods- in fact, your next door neighbor might just come to your doorstep to buy your tomatoes or cucumbers.

Co-op grocery stores

Many cities and towns feature co-op businesses, including grocery stores, that are operated by member shareholders. If you are a member of a co-op grocery, you can probably sell your excess garden produce to the store. For more information on getting started, you may wish to read the following guide.

Keep in mind that, if you do get accepted as a seller in your local co-op, some rules and regulations may apply to what you can sell and in what quantities. Many co-ops require that sold produce is raised organically. Other co-ops require large amounts of produce at set intervals, so you’ll need more than just an extra bag of carrots to get started.

How to make more even money with your garden produce.

Unless you have a sizable garden, you won’t make much cash from your unwanted/extra produce. However, you can make a steady, year-long income if you capitalize on your extra produce and turn it into jams, jellies and sauces first. For example, a bag of heirloom tomatoes may fetch you just $10; however, once those heirlooms are transformed into marinara sauce, you could get $10-$20/jar.

You will need to read up on your state’s cottage laws before you start selling prepared foods. However, most states allow a given amount of home-prepared foods to be sold to the public without the need for health department inspections and/or commercial kitchen use.

If you don’t want to bother with food preparation, you can also earn more money by offering something to the public that’s not seen in most grocery stores. For example, the common Roma tomato is a dime a dozen in August. However, heirloom Black Crim tomatoes are hardly, if ever, available at the grocery store. If you plant just these tomatoes and sell them even in August, you are bound to find many interested parties.

Making money from your garden

In summary, keeping a garden can actually be a profitable venture if you select produce that’s in demand and that’s typically not available at area grocery stores. There are several online sites that enable you to sell your produce and other goods. With some forethought and planning, your garden can actually make you a decent side income during the summer months.