5 Totally Legal (But Morally Questionable) Ways To Make Money Online

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you click on the links and make a purchase, I will receive a small amount of commission. Firstly, thanks for visiting my blog. You may have discovered it via Twitter but it’s more likely you found me either by searching for a beauty product review or using a phrase like “ways to make money online.” I’m kinda sick of that phrase taking everyone to the post about the time I tried to sell my trashed shoes to fetishists, so I’m going to lift the lid on some of the other ways to make money online. They are all totally legal (in the UK, at least) although your moral compass might tell you to steer well clear. That’s your decision. Here are the four ways I’ve made the most money, plus one I considered but didn’t actually try, in ascending order.

UPDATE: This post is now a taster for a book I wrote called 10 Totally Legal But Morally Questionable Ways I Tried To Make Money Online. You can buy it here. It lifts the lid on all the crazy things I did in detail, what worked and what didn’t and gives you a lot more ideas for things that you too can try.

5. Sell Your Opinions

I’ll get the boring one out of the way first. Almost every post you read about how to make money online lists surveys but good ones are few and far between. You can make a decent amount of money using apps like Slice The Pie, where you will be asked to review Beyonce tour merch and French language rap music. You’re paid pennies for each opinion so you’ll need to give a lot of feedback to make anything close to a decent amount. However, if you fill in the gaps of boredom in doctors’ waiting rooms, or when you’re waiting for kettles to boil with these apps, you can easily make around £30 per month. So, it’s  what I call “Nandos money”.

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4. Sell Your Knickers

I have never done this, but I know girls who have. I’m not even kidding. Sites like Sofia Gray allow you to sell your worn panties. It’s like Ebay, but icky. If you’ve seen Orange Is The New Black, you’ll know that there is a definite market for this. You sign up, post pics of your used knickers, either being worn or not, and create a profile where you basically tell the world you’re a hot 21 year old virgin who likes to work out, even if you’re 50 and only run if someone’s chasing you. I don’t know how much people make, but I’m guessing it’s not a lot unless you talk dirty and share explicit pics. Got a penis? No problem! There’s a market for male underwear too apparently.

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I don’t have a name for this one, but I’d probably call it “Knicker money” because you could just buy yourself some nicer ones after offloading the crappy old period panties to some random weirdo in Japan.

3. Matched Betting

Another one that people will hate on me for, but for a while in 2015/2016 I could legitimately have listed my occupation as “professional gambler,” even though there is no gamble involved in this totally legal system. What you do is extract the profit from free bet deals offered by online bookmakers. You do this by placing a bet with the free amount at the bookies and placing a counter-bet at a betting exchange. So, for example, you sign up to SkyBet. They offer you, hypothetically, a £20 free bet if you deposit and play with £30. (I don’t know what their current deal is, so these figures could be wrong) So, you deposit £30 and use this handy matched betting calculator to work out what to do next. You would perhaps bet on Rangers v Celtic. Using the £30 bet you bet on Rangers to win. Then at the exchange, you bet that Rangers won’t win. So if they lose or draw, you win at the exchange and if they win you win at the bookies. You’d make a few pence of a loss on that bet, which is acceptable, because you would then use the £20 free bet to do the same and this time, you’re extracting a profit.

make money online matched betting gambling

This is risky, for a few reasons. Firstly, keep checking the small print at the bookies because sometimes you have to bet the free amount several times before you can withdraw, and then it becomes time consuming and not profitable. Then, you have to be careful you stick to the formula and always use the matched betting calculator. Don’t get carried away when you see the winnings pouring in and think “Oh, I could just make one bet” because one leads to another and then it’s not matched betting any more. It’s a slippery slope you don’t want to ski down. Also, keep clearing your cookies because bookies keep an eye on what you’re doing. Some exchanges are owned by certain bookmakers and they will know if you’re matched betting. Then they’ll withdraw the free bet offers. But the good thing about this is, in the eyes of the law it’s gambling so you don’t pay tax on it and the DWP can’t touch it.

You can make a lot of money doing this. I paid for Christmas with this in 2015. I call this “Christmas money” because over the space of a year you can make enough to buy Santa’s presents.

2. Mystery shopping

I have been mystery shopping for various companies since 2007. I started because I was bullied in my job and I felt disrespected and like my voice didn’t matter. This gave me a way to build my self-esteem, feel like my opinion made a difference and make money at the same time. For mystery shops, you don’t just get paid in cash. Sometimes, you get freebies too. I’ve had free ice-cream, free meals in restaurants, free casino trips (with money to gamble and the chance to keep my winnings), free entry into museums etc. It’s fun too, going undercover. #SpyLife

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Since 2007, mystery shopping has changed beyond recognition. It used to be a proper job with lots of paperwork. Now it’s all done with apps. You’ll often need a special referral code to sign up but if you get one, it can be lucrative. Some of the best apps are Field Agent and Be My Eye (refer with “p0ndvy”). My personal favourite is Roamler, and that’s where I make the most money, but it can be difficult to get a referral code for that as agents are only given a certain number of codes each time they’re promoted. So, for level 2, you get 2 codes, level 3 you get three codes etc. It’s worth holding out for one because Roamler really are the best of the bunch in my opinion.

I call this “Cyprus money” because it’s how I pay for my trips to Cyprus.

1. Publish a really good e-book

You can’t just sit down and write a great thriller and make money. It’s not as simple as that, although a lot of people seem to think it is – and are bitterly disappointed when they realise it isn’t. I’m currently working on a coaching e-book that will lift the lid on all the things you should do to maximise your chances of success, such as choosing a niche genre, promoting for free and deciding whether to utilise KU. In the meantime, you can view my books on Amazon (of course I’m selling something! Did you think I was writing this article just for something to do? LOL). Or, if you’re feeling generous, you could buy me a coffee. There’s also a Facebook group called 20Booksto50K which gives you lots of interesting hints and tips from other writers who are smashing it, although prepare for lots of seafood references… you’ll see what I mean when you get there.

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I call this “how I pay the bills” although recently I haven’t been paying much of anything with book royalties. But since 2011 I’ve made over $11,000 which by self-publishing standards is pretty good, especially considering how clueless I was when I started out.

Do you have any other ways to make money online? Share them!


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