1. Online Surveys
An increasingly popular way for students to make money is to fill out online surveys in their spare time. Research companies are always recruiting new members to answer surveys and test new products.
For a few minutes of form filling, you can make a couple of quid which is paid as cash or rewards. You can bag up to £3 ($5) for some surveys!
A few good ones to try are: Toluna, Vivatic, MySurvey, Valued Opinions, IPSOS, Global Test Market, The Opinion Panel, YouGov, Pinecone, OnePoll, SurveyBods, PopulusLive, Hiving, PanelBase, Branded Surveys, Opinion Outpost, Harris Poll, Mind Mover, New Vista, iPoll.
Also sign up for Swagbucks which rewards you for surveys as well as simply surfing the web, watching videos and playing games.
2. Paid for Searching the Web
Interested in earning cash for doing what you already do online? This has to be one of the easiest methods of making money online without really any effort or change in your behavior.
This innovative idea by Qmee.com rewards you for searching in Google, Bing or Yahoo. You just install a simple add-on to your browser and when you conduct a search there may be a few sponsored results alongside your normal search.
Each Qmee result has a cash reward attached. If you are interested in it, simply click on it and collect your reward.
The best thing is there is no minimum to cashout. Well, you also have the option to donate it to charity.
Sign up now for free and start earning from your own searches!
3. Online Market Trading
The historically hard-to-break world of investing in stock markets and currencies has been cracked wide open. Today there is no need to be a fat cat or fund the yachts of Wolf of Wall Street style stock brokers. You can do it all yourself with the help of online market trading platforms.
Having spent many hours researching this new opportunity, I've been experimenting with the two biggest platforms: Plus500 and eToro.com.
Both offer free practice accounts, and Plus500 also give you a £20 signup bonus (without depositing, terms apply) for their CFD service which is worth taking up. Overall, I prefer eToro with over 4.5 million users worldwide. It was recently featured in the BBC 2 documentary “Traders: Millions by the Minute” and the Financial Times.
One of the best things on eToro is the CopyTrader feature. This lets you literally see, follow and copy the investments of other top performing traders.
I think $200 is a good amount to get the most out of the learning curve by trying out a few different markets. If nothing else you'll learn a great deal about various investments and industries.
Disclaimer: CFD trading can be volatile and you can lose your entire capital, so don't throw your life savings into it! Trading CFDs may not be suitable for you. Please ensure you fully understand the risks involved.
4. Start Your Own Website
Interested in generating passive income? You need a website. It's the way to make money while you sleep.
Starting a website with Bluehost or any other good hosting service takes less than 20 minutes, costs hardly anything and can be done by an 82 year-old. It only takes a bit of plugging on social media to get your first visitors, and there are plenty of ways to monetize your site.
Save the Student is just one example of a successful website, started at university by Owen Burek in his first year, which has since grown into a full-time and sizable enterprise.
Your own website is really one of the best assets you can have.
5. Review Websites & Apps for Cash
Well it seems like you're pretty nifty with a web browser, so perhaps it's time to turn pro and browse websites as a paid and fun job!
Introducing UserTesting.com, a new platform that pays everyday, where people review all kinds of websites. Each review takes around 20 minutes and pays you $10 (£6.50) via Paypal.
6. Write and Publish a Kindle eBook
If students are good at anything, it's researching and writing. With the Amazon Kindle store, anyone can publish an eBook and make money.
And the Kindle app is now available on almost any device including laptops, iPads, smartphones and Kindles. So your global market is huge!
List your book for £1.49 – £6.99 and you earn 70% of the sale. Considering Amazon is the ultimate selling machine (and remember people are looking to spend), that is a fantastic deal.
The key to success with eBooks is to create value, and write non-fiction content. Simply bundling information you have researched and complied on a common problem (eg. ‘secrets' to finding a job) and then presenting it in an easy to digest format (an eBook) justifies someone spending a few quid on it.
Another big tip is to have a great cover designed so it stands out, and once your book is live on the Kindle store it's really important to get some reviews so it shows up higher in results. Encourage readers to leave an honest review at the end of your book.
The best thing about this lucrative idea is that once you've invested the time, say 20 hours, you'll earn a passive income for years to come!
7. Affiliate Marketing
If you've got a good presence on social media or perhaps you even have a blog or website, you can start bringing in money immediately by promoting all sorts of companies, products, services and offers online.
Sign up as a publisher on the an affiliate program or network, like Amazon Associates and Clickbank, check their offers blog or browse the merchant listings to find something you think your friends would be interested in, grab your affiliate link and share it. If someone buys something through your link you'll make a nice commission.
To take it a step further, set up a nice Facebook page and invite all your friends to join it and post your affiliate offers on there.
8. Mobile Phone Recycling
You can get some good money and help the environment by recycling mobile phones. But be aware that you won't always get the quoted cash since it depends on ‘condition'. We recommend Mobile Cash Mate for the fairest and highest payouts in most cases. For example, they would send you a £203 cheque for an iPhone 5.
Maybe you can ask your parents if they have any old mobile phones lying around.
9. Become a ‘Clickworker'
The Clickworker.com concept is based on ‘internet crowd-sourcing' where businesses advertise specific, scalable tasks they need completing quickly. And for us, it's an easy way to make fast cash from our couch.
There are a variety of tasks, but most commonly they involve mindless data entry, web research or form filling. You are rewarded and paid in cash (via Paypal) for the work you do, and you can choose for what and when you work. Give it a try. If you are US based, also try Amazon's ‘Mechanical Turk‘.
10. Claim Tax Back
Many students work part-time or during the summer months, and others will be on placements or paid internships. More often than not, if you are a student working during the year, you will be overpaying income tax.
Why? Simply because few students reach the personal tax-free income allowance each year but are put on an emergency basic tax-code by their employers meaning tax is being paid when it shouldn't be.
11. Get Cashback When Shopping
This is not only a way to make money but also to save money as a student. If you look at it in a different way then you are making money with every purchase you would have made anyway, whether it be 10% or 0.5% cashback.
There are a number of cashback sites out there which pay you the commission they otherwise would have earned.
We recommend signing up with Top Cashback, Quidco.com and Swagbucks which are free and offer the best selection of retailers and exclusives.
12. A part-time Job
A part-time job is the obvious first choice, opted for by most students looking to supplement their student loan. It provides a pretty steady flow of income and can enable you to gain valuable work experience.
But good jobs are not always easy to find!
It is worth signing up with CV Library, a free service which will match your CV with suitable part-time jobs and career opportunities.