How to Make Money with a Computer: Top Ways to Earn Online

With just a computer and internet connection, you can make money online in ways that would have been impossible just a decade ago. The digital age has opened up a wealth of opportunities to generate income without needing to commute to a traditional 9 to 5 job. Some methods allow you to make passive income while you sleep. Others require actively working on your computer. But all of them have the potential to be quite lucrative.

In this article, we will explore the various ways you can use your computer skills, talents, and unused resources to earn money online. Whether you want to do freelance in your spare time, sell products, monetize a blog, or rent out unused computing power, there are options for everyone.


Platforms like Upwork, Fiverr and Freelancer have made it easy to connect with clients across the globe that are looking to hire freelancers for short term projects. The great thing about freelancing is that there is huge demand for a wide variety of skills including writers, programmers, graphic designers, virtual assistants and more.

To get started, create an attractive profile highlighting your expertise, experience and education. Build up a portfolio that clearly showcases your abilities. Try to get great feedback and reviews from your initial clients, as that will make it easier to win more work. Leverage your profile and portfolio to apply for projects that are a good match for your skills.

The benefits of freelancing include setting your own hours, choosing projects you find meaningful, and working from anywhere with an internet connection. It’s an accessible way to leverage your skills to make money online.

Selling Digital Products

One of the hottest ways to make money online is by selling digital products like ebooks, online courses, graphics, photography, music and more. Digital products have huge advantages over physical products – they don’t require shipping or inventory, and customers receive their purchase instantly.

You can create and sell digital products related to almost any skillset, expertise or passion you have. Do research to ensure there is demand for what you plan to create. Use platforms like Etsy to open your own shop selling your digital creations. Price your products competitively and run promotions to attract customers.

Once you have great digital products up for sale, you can earn passive income each month as orders come in. This can become quite lucrative if you are disciplined about creating products that provide value and appeal to your target audience.

Affiliate Marketing

If creating your own products isn’t appealing, you can earn commissions promoting other companies’ products and services through affiliate marketing. Find affiliate programs related to topics and products you are knowledgeable and passionate about. Popular programs are available through companies like Amazon, ClickBank and ShareASale.

The key to success with affiliate marketing is to actively promote the products you represent. You can share affiliate links on your own blog, through social media posts, on YouTube videos, and any other online platforms where your target audience engages. Use unique tracking links so you get credit for all sales driven by your efforts.

When done effectively over the long-term, affiliate marketing can become a significant source of passive income. Just be sure to disclose your financial relationship clearly whenever promoting a product.


Dropshipping allows you to open an online store selling products, without needing to handle inventory or shipping. When a customer places an order, you forward it to your supplier who ships it out directly. The profit comes from pricing the product higher than your wholesale costs.

This model makes ecommerce accessible for anyone with a computer. You can find trending dropshipping product ideas and suppliers on platforms like Shopify and Oberlo. Focus on products with high profit margins that align with market demand. Market your store professionally with excellent product photos, descriptions and branding.

While dropshipping may not earn you fortunes overnight, it can provide a comfortable income stream if you consistently reinvest profits into growth. The low overhead makes it easier to start than traditional ecommerce.


Starting a blog around your interests and skills can also open up multiple money making streams. You can earn ad revenue by joining an ad network like Google Adsense. Affiliate marketing and selling digital products are also perfect monetization avenues.

Building traffic and an audience takes time, but choosing a popular niche and promoting your content smartly through SEO, social media, and collaborations can accelerate growth. Monetize from day one, but wait until you have a reasonable following before expecting significant earnings. There is huge potential with blogging over the long-term.

YouTube Channel

With over 2 billion monthly users, YouTube offers immense opportunity to profit from your creativity and knowledge. Upload entertaining or educational videos consistently around topics you enjoy and are skilled at. Apply to join the YouTube Partner Program once you hit eligibility requirements.

You can monetize your videos by running ads through Google AdSense, promoting affiliate products, and receiving sponsorships related to your niche. Building a loyal following of subscribers willing to watch your uploads will increase your earnings over time. Consistency and watch time are key.

Online Surveys

Taking online surveys in your spare time can provide some quick cash. There are many survey platforms like Survey Junkie, Swagbucks and more that pay users for sharing opinions on products, services, and ads. Payouts typically range from $0.50 to $5 per survey, depending on length.

While no one is getting rich taking surveys, it can net some nice side income if you have free time and enjoy sharing your views. Be careful to avoid sketchy sites and scams. Stick to reputable survey platforms offering fair rewards. Set a daily or weekly time limit to avoid burnout.

Rent Out Your Computer

Believe it or not, you can earn money by simply sharing your computer’s unused processing power and bandwidth through platforms like Honeygain. It’s totally passive income, earning cash while you sleep.

Honeygain and similar services pay users to install an app that sells spare computing resources to data scientists, researchers, web developers and other entities. Just install it and watch the money trickle in each month. Payments scale based on the amount of resources your computer contributes. It likely won’t make you wealthy, but it’s an effortless way to profit from your unused computer.

Tutoring Online

If you have mastery in academic subjects, tutoring students online can be rewarding and lucrative. Platforms like Chegg Tutors and Wyzant connect tutors with students around the world needing help understanding concepts, completing assignments, or preparing for exams.

Subjects like math, sciences, programming, literature and test prep are in highest demand. You set your own hourly rates and schedule. Online tutoring eliminates transportation needs and allows setting your own availability. Building up your online profile and reviews will help attract more students over time. It’s a great way to turn your academic expertise into earnings.


Transcribing audio files is a wonderful computer-based job for those with great listening skills, attention to detail and proficiency in typing. There is high demand to convert audio content like legal recordings, research interviews, podcasts and more into text documents.

Sign up for transcription platforms like Rev, GoTranscript and TranscribeMe to access opportunities. You take on small transcription projects that pay anywhere from $10 to $50+ per audio hour based on experience level and accuracy. It can become quite lucrative with speed and practice over time.

User Testing

Companies developing websites, apps, or other digital products need real users to test their interface and provide feedback before launch. That’s where you come in! User testing platforms like pay everyday folks $10 to $20 per test to use a site and complete tasks while sharing your thoughts.

Each test only takes about 20 minutes. You simply share your demographic profile and the types of sites you often use. You’ll get invites to upcoming tests matching your interests to try out. It offers flexible, quick pay to benefit from your digital experience.

Sell Your Music/Podcasts

If you’re musically gifted or have unique viewpoints to share, you can earn royalties from your original tracks or podcast episodes published on platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, Audible, and more.

You keep a cut of revenue earned based on factors like number of streams and downloads. Using distro services like CD Baby helps publish your content widely. Promote your music smartly on social media to build listeners. Podcasters can earn through ads or affiliate marketing. Leverage your talents to profit from your creativity.

Virtual Assistant

Finally, busy professionals and businesses worldwide need help handling administrative tasks virtually. As a VA, you can offer services like email management, data entry, research, scheduling, and more.

Build expertise in fields you enjoy and common software/tools used in each industry. Create a website, list your services on platforms like Fiverr, and network professionally to find clients. A great opportunity if you’re organized, communicative, and eager to learn.

Selling Stock Photos

Stock photos are in constant demand by websites, advertisers and more. You can earn money by taking quality photographs and uploading them to stock photo sites like Shutterstock and iStockphoto. Make sure to use metadata, titles and tags that make them easily searchable. The more downloads your photos receive, the more you earn through royalty payments.

Online Coding/Development Work

Websites like Toptal connect expert developers with businesses needing help with projects related to mobile apps, web development, programming, and more. Sign up to be considered for projects that match your skills. Provide great work to clients to get positive reviews that will lead to more steady freelance coding work.

Become a Search Engine Evaluator

Search Engine Evaluation Search engines like Google and Bing hire remote workers to assess the quality of search results and provide feedback. Position requires analytical thinking and wise internet usage. Pays around $15-$20 USD per hour. Excellent fit for those passionate about digital technology and analytics.

The best way to find openings for search engine evaluators is to regularly check the career sites of major companies like Appen, and Lionbridge, who frequently hire remote workers for these positions. Also create alerts on mainstream job boards like Indeed and SimplyHired to get notified of new listings. Search for terms like “search engine evaluator” and “search engine rater” to find relevant opportunities.

Start Making Money Online with Your Computer Today

As you’ve seen, there is an incredibly diverse array of options for leveraging your computer skills and resources to make money online. From passive income sources to active ways to put your abilities to work, you can start earning today with the methods in this guide that appeal to you most.

Don’t wait to start down the path toward making money online with your computer. Sign up for a freelancing site, research products to sell, or download an app to rent your unused resources – whatever most excites you. With diligence and dedication, you can begin generating online income and take steps toward financial freedom.

The opportunities are out there. Now go start making money online with your computer today!