20 Online Skills To Make Money

Are you ready to break free from the traditional 9-to-5 grind and explore the boundless opportunities of the digital space?

The internet has reshaped how individuals can earn a living. Whether you’re seeking to boost your income, pivot to a full-time online career, or explore innovative side gigs, acquiring and mastering online skills is your passport to financial freedom.

From e-commerce and digital marketing to freelance work like writing and web development, a wealth of online skills await. This article is your guide to exploring these skills for income generation, providing practical insights and resources to empower your digital journey.

So, let’s jump in and explore the world of online skills to make money online and build a life on your own terms.

Key Takeaways

  • Profitable online skills to learn include social media marketing, web development, graphic design, SEO, online writing, virtual bookkeeping, transcription, affiliate marketing, machine learning, video production and editing.
  • Ways to make money online with little to no skills include online surveys, pet/house sitting, selling stuff online, website testing, starting a YouTube channel.
  • Important factors when choosing an online course include deciding on a skill to learn, researching reputable course providers, evaluating course content/format/cost, checking reviews/ratings/instructor qualifications.
  • Key is to learn profitable online skills, leverage free resources, choose suitable online courses, and explore flexible ways to generate income digitally.

Profitable Online Skills to Learn and Make Money

In the quest for financial growth and independence, mastering the right skills can be your secret weapon.

Online Skills To Make Money

In this section, we’ll explore some of the most profitable skills you can learn to start earning money online.

Social Media Marketing Skills

Social media marketing is a highly in-demand skill that can help you make money online. With the increasing popularity of social media platforms, businesses are looking for a social media marketer who can effectively promote their products or services to their target audience.

Social Media Marketing Skills

By learning social media marketing skills, such as creating engaging content, utilizing advertising tools, and analyzing data insights, you can become a valuable asset in the digital marketing industry.

With the right skills and knowledge, you can earn money by managing social media accounts, running ad campaigns, and boosting brand visibility online.

Freelancers specializing in social media management can command rates of $300 per month per client for handling a single social media account, be it on platforms like Pinterest or Facebook. With the development of exceptional skills in this field, the potential income can soar to $3,000 per month or even higher.

Web Development

Web development is another lucrative skill to learn for making money online. With the increasing demand for websites, businesses are willing to pay top dollar for a skilled web designer.

Whether it’s creating a new website from scratch or revamping an existing one, web developers play a crucial role in designing and coding websites that are both visually appealing and functional.

By mastering programming languages like HTML, CSS, and JavaScript, you can create your own successful web development online business or find freelance opportunities to earn a substantial income online.

Graphic Design

Graphic design is an increasingly popular skill that can help you make money online. With the rise of digital marketing and the need for visually appealing content, graphic designers are in high demand.

Whether you create logos, infographics, or social media graphics, there are plenty of opportunities to showcase your creativity and earn income.

Graphic Design

By leveraging platforms like Upwork or Fiverr as a freelance graphic designer, you can find clients who are looking for your specific design skills.

With the right tools and expertise, graphic design can be a lucrative skill to learn and monetize online.

Search Engine Optimization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is undeniably one of the crucial digital marketing skills for earning money online. The beauty of SEO lies in its ability to drive organic traffic to websites through optimized content.

In today’s digital landscape, businesses understand the paramount importance of SEO, making it a skill that can open doors to various opportunities, whether you’re part of a marketing team, offering freelance services, or launching your niche site.

Search Engine Optimization

The average salary for an SEO specialist stands at $78,411, showcasing its earning potential.

On platforms like Upwork, freelance SEO experts are commanding fees of up to $150.

The avenues for making money with SEO are diverse:

  • Freelancing
  • Consultancy
  • Digital marketing team roles
  • Starting your own blog

Don’t be daunted by the prospect of mastering SEO; it’s an achievable goal. Begin your journey by exploring top SEO blogs, where you’ll find valuable insights.

Online Writing

Online writing is a valuable skill that can help you generate income from home. As a freelance writer, you can write articles, blog posts, and other types of content for websites and businesses.

With the increasing demand for quality online content, businesses and individuals are willing to pay for well-written articles, blog posts, and marketing materials.

By developing your online writing skills and staying consistent in delivering high-quality work, you can tap into this lucrative market and earn money from the comfort of your own home.

As a blogger, you can benefit from ad revenue through programs like Google AdSense, affiliate marketing programs, or by selling your own digital products on your platform.

So if you have a flair for words and enjoy expressing yourself through written communication, consider honing your online writing skills as a viable way to make money online.

Virtual Bookkeeping

Virtual bookkeeping has been gaining popularity as an excellent online skill to make money. It involves keeping track of a company’s financial transactions and updating its accounts regularly.

You don’t need a physical office to serve your clients; all you need is internet access and your computer at home, making it an ideal choice for anyone aiming to earn money on their own schedule.

Virtual Bookkeeping

The demand for virtual bookkeepers continues to rise as more businesses recognize the benefits of outsourcing this task rather than hiring in-house staff. It’s not just large corporations seeking these services; small business owners also need reliable professionals who can handle their books efficiently without breaking the bank.

To excel in this field, deep knowledge of accounting procedures and software like QuickBooks or Xero is indispensable.


Transcription is a valuable online skill that can help you make money. With the increasing demand for audio and video content, there is a need for transcribers to convert these files into written form.

Transcription involves listening to audio recordings or watching videos and accurately typing out everything that is being said. This skill requires good listening skills, attention to detail, and fast typing speed.

As more businesses and individuals create content online, the demand for transcription services continues to grow. It’s a flexible job that can be done from home or anywhere with an internet connection.

Being proficient in transcription can open up opportunities for earning income online by working with clients from various industries such as media, marketing, education, and more.

Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is a lucrative avenue where individuals promote a company’s products or services and earn commissions for successful referrals.

The beauty of affiliate marketing lies in its accessibility – anyone can become an affiliate marketer and start promoting products. While an affiliate marketing program like Amazon offers commission rates of around 3%, platforms like Clickbank boast substantially higher average commission rates at approximately 75%.

Affiliate marketing

But the earning potential doesn’t stop there. You can also explore the role of an affiliate marketing manager, responsible for nurturing the relationship between the company and its affiliates. These managers earn an average salary of $68,942 annually, according to climbtheladder.com. On platforms like Upwork, freelance affiliates are commanding an average of $91 per hour.

Learning the ropes of affiliate marketing is readily achievable online, with valuable resources like blogs, YouTube tutorials, and online courses at your disposal.

Machine Learning

If you’re eyeing one of the top-paying gigs in today’s tech industry, machine learning engineering should be on your radar. It’s not only a profitable skill, but it opens up multiple avenues for income generation.

The role involves diving into the realm of algorithms, self-learning AI systems, and predictive models. Its value and demand have surged in recent years, thanks to AI-powered content generation tools.

Machine Learning

On average, machine learning engineers rake in an annual salary of about $145,296, which varies based on experience and qualifications.

For freelancers on platforms like Upwork, hourly rates typically range from $50 to $200.

To excel in this field, you’ll need to master skills and technologies like Python, machine learning models, reinforcement learning, NLP (Natural Language Processing), and deep learning.

The good news is there’s a wealth of knowledge waiting for you online. YouTube boasts a trove of tutorials, and various courses can provide you with the foundation to dive right in.

Video Production and Editing

In today’s business landscape, video has become a powerhouse for engaging audiences, making video production and editing skills more in demand than ever before.

This surge in demand translates to excellent earning potential, whether you work for a company or agency or venture out as a freelancer.

The average annual salary for a video editor in the US hovers around $53,000.

Video Production and Editing

For freelancers on platforms like Upwork, hourly rates typically range from $20 to $50.

To embark on a career in video editing, you’ll need to become proficient in software tools like Adobe Premier Pro or Final Cut Pro for Mac users. Some editors also delve into the realm of special effects to make their creations truly pop.

Fortunately, the internet is teeming with YouTubers ready to teach you the ins and outs of these tools, paving the way for you to become a skilled editor yourself.

For a deeper dive into this skill, consider enrolling in an online course. Expert instructors can guide you through the process step by step.

Virtual Assistance

Virtual assistance is an increasingly popular skill that can be utilized to earn money online. As a virtual assistant, you can provide a wide range of services remotely, such as administrative tasks, customer support, social media management, and data entry.

Virtual Assistance

With the flexibility to work from anywhere and set your own schedule, virtual assistance offers the opportunity to earn extra money or even create a full-time job. It’s important to note that each client may have specific requirements and tools they use, so being adaptable and having good communication skills are key in this field.

Whether you’re looking for some extra income or want to start your own business as a virtual assistant, this skill can open up various opportunities for earning money online.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is another important aspect of the marketing industry. By building an email list and sending targeted emails to your subscribers, you can promote your products or services and drive sales.

The value of this skill is underscored by its remarkable return on investment (ROI). In the marketing world, it’s a common adage that “the money is in the list,” and email marketing lives up to this claim. On average, email marketing generates an impressive $36 for every $1 spent.

Professionals in this field command an average annual salary of $76,734, while freelancers charge between $45 and $125 per hour for their expertise.

However, email marketing is not as simple as just sending out a bunch of emails. You need to create engaging and valuable content that your subscribers will want to read and share.

Blockchain development

Blockchain development is a highly lucrative field, making it one of the top-earning skills on our list. With the increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies, both businesses and individuals are delving deeper into blockchain technology.

Blockchain development

Blockchain, at its core, is a decentralized system that records transactions made using cryptocurrencies within a peer-to-peer network. Think of it as a torrent-like system where only parts of a file are transferred between computers and linked using peer-to-peer technology. Similarly, blockchain systems don’t rely on centralized networks to store data, enhancing their security.

Due to the intricacies involved, the average annual salary for a blockchain developer stands at $97,886. Freelance blockchain developers charge hourly rates ranging from $35 to $150.

As a blockchain developer, your role revolves around creating secure systems to record blockchain transactions and prevent potential hacks. This involves developing application features, designing interfaces, and maintaining client and server-side technologies.

The good news is that there are numerous resources available for learning about blockchain and cryptocurrencies. For a comprehensive guide from A to Z, you can explore this Udemy course, which covers all the essentials to get you started. Additionally, you’ll find a wealth of free tutorials and courses on YouTube.


Copywriting, often hailed as the art of persuasion through the written word, is a skill in high demand and is indispensable to any successful business. It serves as the bridge that conveys the value of products and services to potential customers.


In today’s digital economy, mastering this skill is essential. Without effective copywriting, businesses would be limited to verbal communication, which is far from ideal.

Earning money as a copywriter is achievable through various avenues:

  1. Freelancing
  2. Within a company’s marketing team
  3. As the owner of your own copywriting business

In the United States, the average annual salary for a copywriter is approximately $69,000. Freelancers can earn between $15 and $160 per hour, depending on their experience and expertise.

To embark on a copywriting career, start by acquiring the fundamentals. You can find valuable resources on YouTube or in the best copywriting books. Alternatively, enroll in an online course; platforms like Udemy offer excellent courses in this field.

Podcast Audio Editing

Podcast audio editing is an emerging skill that can help you generate income online. With the increasing popularity of podcasts, there is a high demand for professionals who can edit and enhance the quality of podcast episodes.

By mastering this skill, you can work with podcasters to improve the sound quality, remove background noise, add intro/outro music, and create a seamless listening experience for their audience.

It is a great way to combine your technical skills with creativity and contribute to the growing podcast industry.

Voice Modulation

Voice modulation is an emerging skill that can help you generate income online. With voice modulation, you can use your voice to create various tones, accents, and emotions for different purposes.

This skill is especially valuable for podcasters, voice actors, and those involved in audio content creation. By mastering the art of voice modulation, you can attract more listeners or clients who are looking for engaging and captivating voices.

It’s a unique skill that sets you apart from others in the industry and opens up opportunities for earning money online through different platforms.

Project management

Project management is a critical role within any organization, responsible for the planning and execution of projects.

Project managers excel at bringing teams together and leveraging each member’s strengths to drive projects to successful completion. It’s a highly skilled role that plays an indispensable role in many companies.

Project management

Project managers command an average annual salary of $93,041, influenced by factors such as experience and qualifications. On platforms like Upwork, freelance project managers charge hourly rates ranging from $15 to $75.

Becoming a proficient project manager involves mastering a range of skills, including familiarity with methodologies like Agile, Waterfall, or Scrum, proficiency in project management software, effective communication, negotiation, leadership, problem-solving, and more.

Consulting and coaching

Consulting and coaching are both highly valuable skills in the realm of professional development and business growth.

Consultants assist professionals in achieving success in specific areas of their business, offering problem-solving expertise and practical solutions. Coaches, on the other hand, take a more hands-off approach, guiding individuals to explore alternative perspectives on their current situations.

These skills are particularly valuable because many business owners struggle to identify their own internal limitations. By engaging a coach or consultant, individuals can make rapid breakthroughs in their careers or personal lives, overcoming hurdles they might otherwise spend years grappling with.

Salaries for consultants within consultancy firms typically range from $79,000 to $138,000, based on research from various sources. Freelance consultants on platforms like Upwork charge hourly rates spanning from $50 to $235.

Earnings as a consultant or coach can vary widely, depending on factors like industry, experience, and qualifications.

Mobile app development

Mobile app development has emerged as one of the most lucrative skills to acquire for earning income. This field encompasses a range of skills, including programming, UI design, and backend computing.

Mobile app development

The shift toward mobile applications is undeniable, with people now spending more time on their mobile devices than on traditional computers. As a result, businesses are increasingly turning to mobile app development to expand their reach, driving up the demand for individuals capable of coding Android and iOS apps.

Mobile app development offers promising career prospects, and if you’re interested in this field, now is an excellent time to start learning. While mastering coding languages like Java and grasping the basics of XML for Android is essential, it’s worth noting that coding is manageable with commitment and practice.

How to pick the best online course

Choosing the best online course can be a crucial decision to help you acquire new skills, advance your career, or pursue your interests. Here are some steps to help you pick the best online course for your needs:

1. Decide the Skill You Want to Learn

Before you start scouring the internet for the perfect online course, it’s crucial to pause and figure out which skills you’re eager to acquire.

Having a skillset that you can trade not only makes you stand out among your peers but also boosts your chances of finding employment. So, aim for skills that are not only profitable but also in high demand, opening up new opportunities in your chosen industry.

Additionally, you might want to consider taking some online personality tests. They can provide valuable insights into your strengths and help you identify the fields where you excel.

Once you’ve got a handle on your potential strengths, match them up with the key skills in your industry of interest and gauge your enthusiasm for those areas. This way, you’ll be on the right path to skill development that suits you best.

2. Research Reputable Course Providers

Conduct thorough research to identify reputable course providers and platforms. Look for well-established organizations, universities, and respected online learning platforms like Coursera, edX, or Khan Academy.

These platforms often offer a wide range of courses across various subjects, ensuring high-quality content and reliable instructors. Investigate the course catalogs on these platforms to see if they offer courses relevant to your goals.

Furthermore, consider the reputation and track record of the specific institutions or instructors offering the courses. Read reviews and testimonials from past students to gauge the quality of the learning experience. Reputable course providers are more likely to provide comprehensive and effective online courses that meet your educational needs.

3. Evaluate the Course Content

When you’re considering enrolling in a course, it’s essential to examine the course description carefully. This description provides a concise overview of the course you’re about to join, offering crucial information such as the expected time commitment, available downloadable resources, and an outline of the course content to give you a clear sense of the learning journey ahead.

Furthermore, within the description, you’ll find any prerequisites or requirements necessary to get started. While most courses are open to anyone with a willingness to learn, it’s important to check if there are specific system essentials or prior knowledge expected.

Additionally, you can take a closer look at the course content to ensure it aligns with your goals. If you’re a beginner, you might want to begin with a shorter introductory course to build a foundation before exploring more advanced topics.

Lastly, consider reviewing the instructor’s biography to gain insights into their expertise within the field, helping you make an informed decision about the course.

4. Investigate Instructor Qualifications

The qualifications and expertise of the course instructor play a crucial role in the quality of your learning experience.

Research the instructor’s background, credentials, and experience in the subject matter. Instructors with industry experience, academic qualifications, or a track record of teaching excellence are more likely to provide valuable insights and guidance throughout the course.

Additionally, look for reviews or recommendations specifically related to the instructor. Feedback from previous students can provide valuable insights into the instructor’s teaching style, effectiveness, and overall impact on the learning process.

A well-qualified and engaging instructor can make a significant difference in your ability to grasp and apply course concepts.

5. Consider Course Format and Delivery

Different online courses utilize various formats and delivery methods. Consider the format that best suits your learning style and preferences.

Some courses may primarily consist of video lectures, while others incorporate interactive assignments, quizzes, peer discussions, or hands-on projects. Think about how you learn best and choose a course format that aligns with your strengths.

Additionally, assess the flexibility of the course. Some courses are self-paced, allowing you to study at your own speed, while others have fixed start and end dates with set deadlines. The choice between self-paced and structured courses depends on your schedule and preferred learning approach.

Ensure that the course format and delivery method facilitate your ability to absorb and retain the material effectively.

6. Check Course Reviews and Ratings

Many online learning platforms encourage users to share their feedback through reviews. This valuable feature allows you to gain insights from other learners who have taken the same course.

Authentic reviews can provide you with a well-rounded understanding of the course, highlighting both its strengths and weaknesses.

A substantial number of reviews indicate transparency in the course, helping you make a quicker decision. Interestingly, even a few negative reviews can contribute to the course’s authenticity rather than diminishing it.

However, it’s not necessary to take every negative review at face value. Instead, pay closer attention when there’s a significant number of negative comments.

Additionally, consider looking at the course ratings, typically depicted as an average out of 5 stars, which have been assigned by previous learners. This can offer a quick snapshot of overall satisfaction with the course.

7. Check Course Duration and Time Commitment

Examine the course duration and time commitment required. Determine if the course fits within your schedule and availability.

Some online courses can be completed in a matter of weeks, while others may span several months. Consider your current commitments, such as work, family, or other responsibilities, and select a course that you can realistically manage without feeling overwhelmed.

If you have a busy schedule or prefer a flexible learning pace, you may opt for self-paced courses that allow you to study at your convenience.

Alternatively, if you thrive in a more structured environment, you can choose courses with set start and end dates. Ensuring that the course duration aligns with your availability will help you stay on track and successfully complete the course.

8. Evaluate Course Costs and Financial Aid Options

Carefully evaluate the costs associated with the course. This includes tuition fees, registration fees, and any required textbooks or materials.

Ensure that the course cost is within your budget and that you can comfortably afford it. Keep in mind that the most expensive course is not necessarily the best fit for your needs.

Explore financial aid options, scholarships, or discounts that may be available. Many online course providers and institutions offer financial assistance to eligible students. Investigate these opportunities to reduce the financial burden and make the course more accessible.

Additionally, consider the potential return on investment (ROI) of the course, especially if it leads to career advancement or higher earning potential.

By following these steps, you can systematically choose the best online course that aligns with your learning objectives, fits your preferred learning style and schedule, and remains within your budget.

Ways to make money online with no specialized skills

There are several online money-making opportunities that require little to no specialized skills.

These opportunities can be appealing for those looking to earn money online without a substantial investment in learning or equipment.

Here are some options:

Online Surveys and Market Research

Participating in online surveys and market research studies is a straightforward way to earn money online. Websites like Swagbucks, Survey Junkie, and Vindale Research pay users for sharing their opinions on various topics.

You don’t need specific skills; all you need is an internet connection and a willingness to provide feedback.

Pet Sitting and House Sitting

Platforms like Rover and TrustedHousesitters connect pet owners and homeowners with trustworthy individuals willing to pet sit or house sit.

While experience with pets or house-sitting is beneficial, it’s often more about responsibility and reliability than specific skills.

Sell stuff online

Selling stuff online, whether it’s on eBay or Craigslist, is a quick way to make some extra money from the comfort of your home. If you’ve got a closet filled with clothes you’ve barely worn or a basement stacked with old LPs, you can easily list them on these popular platforms.

Now, it’s important to note that selling your own items may not be a long-term money-making strategy, as you’ll eventually run out of things to sell. But here’s where you can get smart about it.

Once you’ve got a bit of initial cash from your own sales, you can start browsing these platforms for undervalued items to flip for a profit. Craigslist is especially known for offering low-cost or even free items that you can fix up and sell at a higher price. You can also scout local tag sales and book fairs to uncover hidden treasures.

Get Paid to Test websites

If you’re into the idea of having an impact on the decisions of big-name brands, you can actually get paid for testing websites through a platform called UserTesting.

Here’s how it works: Companies use UserTesting to try out their new technologies or design concepts, and they rely on feedback from UserTesting’s network of users like you.

Getting started is a breeze. You just go to their website and fill out an application. The application process is straightforward, and you’ll need to complete a practice test to qualify.

Once you’re accepted, you can explore the available opportunities and answer a few screening questions to see if you’re a good fit for a particular test.

From there, it’s as simple as going through the test and sharing your honest and in-depth feedback. Testers typically earn between $4 and $10 for tests that last up to 20 minutes. Plus, there’s a chance you might even get to participate in live tests, which can pay over $100 each.

Start a YouTube Channel

If you’re looking to turn your creative talents into a source of income, launching your own YouTube channel is a fantastic avenue. Whether your passion lies in creating comedy sketches, workout guides, or video game walkthroughs, YouTube provides the platform to showcase your skills.

However, it’s essential to recognize that earning substantial money on YouTube doesn’t happen overnight. To attract potential advertising partners, you’ll need to grow your subscriber base, demonstrating that you have an engaged and loyal audience.

This is where your unique skills and approach come into play. With millions of channels competing for attention, you must find a way to stand out.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are some high-income skills that can be learned for free?

There are several high-income skills that can be learned for free, such as copywriting, social media marketing, graphic design, and coding. These skills can be learned through online courses, tutorials, and resources available on various platforms like YouTube, Skillshare, and Udemy. Learning these skills can help you earn a good income online.

What are some flexible ways to make money online?

There are several flexible ways to make money online, such as freelancing, online tutoring, blogging, affiliate marketing, and selling digital products. These options allow you to work from anywhere and at any time, making them ideal for those who want to work on their own schedule.

What are the top 10 ways to make money online?

The top 10 ways to make money online include starting a blog, freelancing, affiliate marketing, selling digital products, online tutoring, dropshipping, creating an online course, social media marketing, graphic design, and coding. These options offer flexibility and can be learned through free or paid resources available online.

What are some computer skills that can be learned to make money?

There are several computer skills that can be learned to make money, such as coding, web development, graphic design, video editing, and data analysis. These skills are in high demand and can be learned through online courses, tutorials, and resources available on various platforms like Udemy, Coursera, and LinkedIn Learning.


Learn these online skills to make money and unlock new opportunities for yourself. Whether blogging, social media marketing, or web development, there are endless possibilities to earn a living online.

Take control of your financial future and start acquiring the skills that can bring you success in the digital world.