Blogging has become huge – and it’s not just about cat videos and endless SEO content. The practice offers a way to make money online while still affording the ability to post on your own terms. Plus, you can do it from the comfort of your home.
If you’re looking for ways to make extra cash, why not consider selling your own stuff online? There are dozens of sites that’ll give you money for essentially anything you want to sell them. While this potentially sounds like an easy way to make money, there are important considerations that you need to make.
The Pros And Cons Of Online Marketplaces
There are countless benefits to selling your own stuff online. From the ability to work remotely to the flexibility of your schedule, the potential to make money online selling your own stuff is endless. Additionally, you can use the funds you make to invest in other opportunities, like real estate or starting a business.
On the other hand, online marketplaces like Etsy and eBay offer plenty of cons. The main issue is that you’re competing with countless other sellers who are all trying to make a profit, too. Additionally, you’re giving all of your personal information to potential buyers who can be scams or who’ll cheat you out of money. There are also possible legal issues if you’re not a businesses and you make a lot of money, or if you’re doing this as a side gig and you don’t make enough to cover your costs.
An Investment Or A Money-Maker?
Whether you decide to actively participate in online marketplaces or whether you choose to rent out your storage space and invest the money you make, your primary goal is to make money.
If you’re looking to make a quick buck, you might want to consider investing in a marketplace shopping cart legitimately or buying and selling stocks online. While these avenues may allow you to make a profit, they’re not without their risks. Alternatively, you could choose to launch your own online store and sell your own products through online marketplaces like Shopify, Facebook Shop, and Squarespace.
The Growth Of Online Marketplaces
In the last few years, countless individuals and businesses have found success through online marketplaces. While Etsy has been around for years, it wasn’t until recently that the platform really took off. In fact, Shopify recently reported that nearly 66 million consumers shop on Etsy every month — that’s roughly 132 million customers. And, since 2016, TikTok users have spent an average of 22.5 hours per day on the app.
If you’ve got a product that’s finding success on TikTok, why not try and expand to other platforms? Launching a TikTok channel for your business can help attract new customers. You can also try and integrate your products with other platforms, like TikTok or Instagram, to increase sales.
How To Make Money Online Without Getting Scammed
If you decide to go down the self-made entrepreneur path and you want to make sure you don’t get scammed, here are a few tips.
Understand The Risks
You’ve likely heard the saying “all risks are possible, but some are more probable than others.” While it’s important to be mindful of the risks associated with any new and exciting endeavor, it’s even more essential that you understand the risks associated with online marketplaces. Unfortunately, there are countless stories of people getting scammed or experiencing financial woes due to falling for a scam on a site like Etsy. If you decide to use an online marketplace, it’s essential that you understand these risks and set proper expectations.
Luckily, you can take measures to minimize these risks. For example, be sure to look for feedback from previous buyers or, even better, ask a trusted friend or family member to vouch for you. Additionally, be sure to read the terms of service and privacy policies closely, understand what information the companies collect, and set up a fraud alert with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Also, be sure to check the regulatory body of your state to see if there are any warnings or legal issues specifically related to online marketplaces. Finally, be sure to look for penny pinchers — companies that promote deals but don’t necessarily have a good reputation.
Make Sure You’re Preparing For The Unexpected
It’s essential to plan for the unexpected. While you might be able to come up with a schedule that you think will make you a lot of money online, things rarely go as expected. Especially when you’re starting from zero.
What you need to do is be prepared for the unexpected. Even when you’ve got the best plan in the world, you still need to be prepared for the unexpected. You could lose a significant chunk of change if you don’t have adequate insurance coverage. And, if you’re working remotely, you might not be able to assist with an emergency if you get sick or injured. Additionally, you could end up losing a lot of money if your product isn’t as good as you think it is.
To be clear, you’re not losing money online if your product is good quality and you don’t get scammed. What you’re talking about is risks associated with being a small business owner and working remotely.
Be Selective With The Companies You Work With
When choosing companies that you’ll work with to sell your own products, it’s important to choose based on the best fit. First, make sure that the company has an established reputation for honest and trustworthy dealings. Also, be sure to look for companies that are B-to-B and that have a proven track record of living up to their standards. Finally, as a self-made entrepreneur, you’re going to be doing a lot of work for free — make sure that you choose companies that are willing to pay you fair market rates for your efforts. If any of the companies you’re considering work with are not up to par, there are plenty of others that can be found.
Make Sure You Have A Proper License
To be able to run a business in one state you’ve got to register with the State of California as a California Resident Small Business (CRSB). Additionally, if you decide to work with manufacturers to produce your products, make sure that you get a license from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to do so. The CRSB registration is a matter of law, while the FTC license is a matter of regulations. You don’t want to risk losing your privilege as a California resident or run afoul of the FTC. It’s also important to note that neither the CRSB nor the FTC license requirements apply if all you’re doing is selling your home decor or handwritten invitations.