There is a plethora of work-at-home websites that claim to offer ideal job and business opportunities for those who need extra income or a source of side cash. Some of these websites require a monthly/yearly subscription fee, but most are free to sign up for and use.

However, even a ‘free’ website can cost you time. Also, some supposedly free work-at-home sites can end up hurting you in the long run by inundating your inbox with spam, or selling your information to other businesses that then inundate your inbox with spam.

The following three websites have been around for some time now and appear to offer work-at-home opportunities; however, they are unlikely to be of much benefit to their subscribers:

Next Job at Home

This site is relatively new and advertises screened work-at-home and telecommute positions. It’s free to sign up with this site, after which it’ll send you periodic emails announcing new positions. In essence, Next Job at Home a job listing directory.

That’s the idea, anyway.

Unfortunately, once you leave your name and email with this site, the job “leads” that are emailed to you are either outright scams, or they require you to pay to sign up with them. So much for this site having screened jobs.

Unfortunately, you’ll have no way of knowing this until you click on the job ‘descriptors.’ I say ‘descriptors’ because the actual job descriptions are very sparse and do not provide enough detail. There’s a reason for this brevity: It’s to induce you to click on job listings so that Next Job At Home makes money from your clicks.

Now, if you click on the ad links provided within the emails, your data will likely by captured by the affiliate partners of those ads, to be resold to other marketing companies. Your inbox will then gradually become inundated with spam emails from Next Job at Home’s affiliate partners.

Shadow Shopper

To start off with, Shadow Shopper is not, in itself, a mystery shopping company. Instead, it’s a mystery shopping job aggregator. The company lists mystery shop jobs through its internal search engine; it will also send out emails to its subscribers with jobs.

You can sign up with Shadow Shopper as a bronze member for free. This enables you to search the site for various jobs once you complete your profile.

However, let’s say you do find a job posting that sparks your interest. You click on the “Apply” button, and here is the screen that opens up:

So, in order to get to your job listing, you must first jump through a survey hoop. Once that screen closes, you see your job listing again and are provided with a small area in which you can apply for the job. Keep in mind, however, that you still don’t know the name of the company or its specifics even as you type out your “application.”

In my case, I typed out “I would like to apply for this mystery shopping position.” Honestly, I had no idea what else I could write in that space.

Shadow Shopper also offers a Gold subscription plan that features more timely job listings.

The issue with receiving mystery shopping jobs that are ‘not later than 7 days’ is that most choice mystery shopping jobs are snapped up within hours of their posting. So, even if a job posting is ‘only’ a day old, it’s probably already long gone.

Also, mystery shopping companies like HS Brands, SeeLevel, Sassie, etc., are free to join. These companies will email you mystery shopping jobs on a daily or even hourly basis. Once the company receives a few well completed jobs from you, it may even contact you directly about choice assignments not available online.

Global Information Network

This company claims that it will help you “Be, Do and Have” whatever you want in your life. Global Information Network is a global club that offers mentorship, webinars and reading material for getting you pumped up and ready to accomplish the big goals in your life.

You won’t necessarily realize just what GIN is actually offering until you delve into its website, and specifically its member sign up area. Here’s where you’ll find the following:

So, to become a GIN member, you’ll need to pay almost $500. You then pay $150 for each month that you remain a GIN member. Alternately, you can sign up for free as a GIN affiliate; however, you won’t receive much from the company aside from its promo emails.

The real draw of this club isn’t its webinars or other educational offerings, however. It’s the millionaires and billionaires that you will supposedly gain access to, be able to bounce ideas off of, and maybe even get to invest in your big idea.

You might encounter people pitching GIN as an exclusive club and its many benefits. However, you won’t know why until you delve even deeper into GIN. Apparently, the company pays its affiliates a hefty $200 commission for each person they manage to sign up to GIN.

While GIN might offer some decent information on realizing big ideas, such information can be accessed by joining area entrepreneurship clubs and engaging with maker spaces in your city/town.

As for having direct access to millionaires/billionaires, this seems a bit far-fetched in terms of actual benefit. Are these self-made millionaires/billionaires or just people who’ve happened to inherit money? Are these individuals even remotely interested in speaking to someone whose ‘big idea’ consists of making a few thousand dollars each month as a side income?

Online opportunities: Not Always As Advertised

When it comes to searching for and finding online and work-at-home opportunities, things aren’t always what they appear to be. So, it’s imperative that you do due diligence and investigate any online opportunity you’re about to invest your time and money in. Otherwise, you risk chasing after dead ends and/or losing cash.

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Join the Discussion

  • Brandi

    This article is realllly helpful, and I’m sure a lot of people who are looking for online work will appreciate it! I know personally, I’ve searched every corner of the internet looking for some legit online work, to find out that almost everything besides taking surveys for literal pennies is a scam. It’s tough, but there are some real opportunities out there. Just have to learn how to spot the scams!

  • Cindy

    Hi, Steve. At first, I had read your title wrong. LOL. I thought you meant 3 work at home websites that ARE worth your time and wondered why WA wasn’t listed. My bad. Thank you for reviewing these other 3 sites. Hopefully, no one falls for any of it. Thanks for sharing.

  • Katie

    I do enjoy reading your insights into home opportunities as you say often the are a disappointment , I have come across sites that say there are jobs available online however as you say often it is a listing site, some even ask for a membership fee, I have done mystery shopping work however this came through the local job centre and was quite enjoyable. I did wonder about the GIN as I came across that a few weeks ago and I was quite taken back at how expensive it was, it can be hard finding a real honest opportunity online and I hear of so many poor people who have been conned out of their hard earned money

  • Veronica

    When the master speaks, we listen….

    Your reviews are always just clear and concise, Steve. I never heard of Shadow Shopper, but the idea of getting paid to shop sounds like a whole lot of fun to me! But there really are so many scams, just finding something legitimate can be a full-time job.

    Did I read that right about Global Information Network – $500 to join and $150 monthly membership!!!

    Thank goodnees I’ve managed to avoid most of that mess and found my way to Wealthy Affiliate….thanks to you, Steve!

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