The Internet is a good place to earn some extra money. For some people, online jobs are a full-blown carrier, for others they are just side projects. Depending on your salary and the time you’re willing to invest, you can choose how seriously you want to take this source of income. Either way there is a special set of skills, which you need to possess and cultivate if you want to work online.
Here’s what you should have in mind before you enlist for online jobs.
Basic computers skills
This is pretty obvious, but it’s getting increasingly hard to define. If you want to work from your computer, you should have basic computer skills. This means word processing, working with spreadsheets, conducting research online, protecting your privacy and being able to fix simple malfunctions. If you have all of these (and you probably do) you can safely advertise that you’re computer literate. Some online jobs will require more skills, such as coding or web design, but if these are required for a specific job, the employers should specify that it is so, because having these skills isn’t all that common.
Most of the work done online requires you to have excellent command of English. If you want to know how to get paid online, you need to understand and complete the tasks you receive. When it comes to completing online surveys, it’s very important to understand the subtleties and finesses of English phrases. This way the companies will have more clear understanding of the response their products create.
If you want to make money by blogging, good grammar and rich vocabulary are even more important. Blog posts can have a variety of styles. Some are basic journalism pieces, while others are more informal and talkative. Once you figure out your target demographic, you should be able to switch between different styles, without losing “your voice”.
And, lastly there are numerous jobs available that are specifically based on language skills. Translators are always needed, especially those who also have other skills (such as understanding of medical terms, or law). Typing out audio transcripts is also a popular job, which requires both patience and good grammar. English lessons, usually conducted over Skype are always needed as well. Being a teacher is more than just speaking the language, teaching someone the skill you have is much different than just having it.
It goes without saying that people skills are needed for almost any job. You will interact with a lot of people, from different countries and cultures, so be prepared for this. Social skills can have benefits unrelated to the job you’re currently working on. Networking and mingling are skills and they can help you advance your carrier.
There’re also quite specific jobs, which rely entirely on these skills. Almost all businesses have profiles on various social networks. Administrating these profiles is one of the most important ways for them to market their products. Social media managers interact with the clients daily. This can be a pleasant, even creative experience, but it can also get ugly fast (as anyone who uses Twitter knows). If you’re applying for these jobs, make sure you can handle stressful situations and remain respectful and cheerful.
People don’t use offices anymore and jobs are mostly remote, so there are no assistants. The need for assistants however, still exists. More and more businesses are hiring virtual, online assistants to do ordinary office management work like setting schedules and answering e-mails. This job, like its analog predecessor, requires a lot of tact and a deep understanding of interpersonal relationships inside an office.
If you can find a niche market, you can sell pretty much anything online. It’s hard to define what the entrepreneurial spirit is, but you can tell who has it and who doesn’t. Every business decision (both on and offline) entails a certain amount of risk. Making the jump from an idea about online business to an actual business is the hard part. This is where the entrepreneur part comes in.
The internet is a big place, and if you examine both yourself and the market, you’ll be able to find a job that’s suited to your skills.
Nate M. Vickery is an entrepreneur and business consultant from Sydney, Australia. In his free time he likes to share some of his insights and experience by blogging.