Most college students need a side income to cover all the expenses of tuition and living away from home.
Unfortunately, many traditional part-time jobs tend to be far more time-demanding and less flexible than a college schedule can allow. However, there are lots of opportunities for online jobs that can allow you to earn some extra cash without compromising your grades. Whether you’re looking for a little spending more or an extra $1,000 per month, there are plenty of possibilities.
Here we’ll explore 15 of the best options that may be just what you’ve been looking for.
→ Related reading: 30+ of the Best Weekend Jobs
Online Jobs for College Students
1. Social Media Manager
Most of us spend our free time on social media, so why not get paid at the same time? Most modern businesses use social media for marketing and brand purposes, but in-house management can be costly, and employee time is often better utilized elsewhere. This is where an independently contracted social media manager can step in.
A social media manager can help to build business brand awareness by building relationships with potential clients or customers, curating content, and encouraging new leads. You will act as the online voice for the company.
You can get started working as a social media manager by approaching a local business you are interested in and telling them about your services. Start with businesses you already use such as coffee shops, restaurants, and yoga studios. Concentrate your efforts on the social media platforms that you feel most comfortable with and highlight how it can be used to grow a business and reach new customers.
2. Freelance Writer
This can seem a little intimidating, but you really don’t need to worry about your credentials for getting started. With a desire to write and good grammar, you can create a freelance writing career.
Freelance writing is not only lucrative, but it is also flexible and can easily work around your college schedule. It can even add an interesting line or two to your resume. There are a number of platforms that can connect you with writing clients, and once you have a portfolio of work, you can start to pick up higher-paying clients. You may even be able to add “Published in the New York Times” to your resume, which will look fantastic if you want to apply for programs or post-grad studies.
To learn more, please read How to Become a Freelance Writer.
College is the ideal time to start a blog. You can gain a creative outlet and make some money. The key to success for making money as a blogger is providing content of value to readers. No one is particularly interested in your last family vacation, but tips and tricks for traveling or things you should know before you travel to a specific country is helpful and engaging.
Before you start a blog, you need to think of a topic that you would enjoy writing about. Try to be specific as you will be able to speak to a target audience rather than just being a single voice whispering in a crowd. When considering topics, write down a minimum of 20 ideas for blog posts to check that you will be able to consistently produce great content. Get started writing your first half dozen posts to test whether you enjoy writing them.
When you are ready to start a blog, you will need to choose a website host provider. This will bring a small cost, but there are some basic plans (like those offered by Bluehost) that allow you to host one or more sites for a minimal amount of money. Although it can take time to start to see the results of your blog, consistent posting will pay off in the long run.
For more, please read How to Start a Blog.
Get FREE access to my course Blog Launch Breakthrough, which includes 14 video lessons that help you to start your blog on a solid foundation. The course will help you to choose the right niche, pick a blog name, get your blog set up, create a unique blog that will stand out, and much more.
4. Virtual Assistant
Virtual assistant duties range from customer service and data entry to email marketing and copywriting. The amount you can earn as a virtual assistant will depend on your experience and skillset. If you specialize in certain skills such as email marketing or copywriting you can command a premium rate.
Generally, businesses will hire a virtual assistant to outsource any tasks that cannot or need not be done in-house. In many cases, these tasks are not cost-efficient, and by handing them over to a virtual assistant, their team can focus on more core business.
For example, a cafe may make great food, and the team needs to serve customers and keep the kitchen and dining areas clean. However, they may not be great at social media marketing and management. A virtual assistant can not only provide expertise in this area, but they can avoid paying employee taxes.
o start work as a virtual assistant, you will need to think about what services you’re able to offer. Then choose platforms to create profiles and attract clients. There is also plenty of virtual assistant training available if you need some help getting started.
To learn more, please read How to Become a Virtual Assistant.
5. Graphic Designer
You don’t need to be a graphic design major to make money as a graphic designer. You just need an eye for detail and the right tools. Small businesses need great graphics for everything from logos and business cards to social media images.
If you don’t feel confident in your graphic design skills, but want to branch out into being a graphic designer, sign up for free courses on Skillshare. Once you’ve got a grasp on the basics, you can progress to more detailed courses.
When you have the skills you need, start reaching out to small businesses in your local area. Discuss the services you can offer such as flyer design, branding, and business cards and how this can increase brand awareness. You can also approach your favorite bloggers who may need graphics for Pinterest pin creation and images for other social media platforms.
Teaching online has allowed many people to quit their unfulfilling full-time jobs and work flexible hours from home. This makes it an ideal option for college students who need the flexibility to manage their class schedule and earning potential.
The most attractive part of tutoring is that you can reinforce what you have already learned. So, consider tutoring the subjects in your major, and you’ll be getting paid to study. However, if you need to step away from your class workload, you’re not restricted to academic subjects. There are other areas of expertise that you can be used for your tutoring, such as sports or an instrument.
There are lots of places to offer tutoring services online, but look for a platform that allows you to set your rate and meets your particular circumstances. For example, VIPKID only allows graduate students, since you need to hold a bachelor’s degree.
To learn more, please read this article about the best online tutoring jobs.
If you find yourself spotting spelling and grammar mistakes when you’re reading social media posts or articles, then you’re perfect for being a proofreader. This is one of the best online job opportunities for college students, since you are already using your proofreading skills constantly.
Bear in mind that proofreading and editing are two very different roles. While editing involves deleting, adding, and restructuring content, proofreading is simply checking for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors. This is the final stage before content is published. So, if you’re forever thinking that it is “your” not “you’re” or “its” not “it’s,” then proofreading could provide a great side gig around your class schedule.
You can start getting proofreading jobs by setting up an online freelancer profile and earning almost immediately.
To learn how to start a successful proofreading business, please see Proofread Anywhere.
8. Blog Editor
As we’ve touched on above, editing can also provide a great incom