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Ever thought of working from home? I have but wasn’t sure how to do this. I read and researched how for a whole year and have been running a business from home for a little over 2 years and am here to share tips and advice on how to work from home.
We all want extra money for various reasons, I wanted extra money because when I started this journey, I was unemployed and had little money to spend with. I wanted more money not just for my needs but for my wants, like video gaming and travelling.
It’s always a good idea to have more than one source of income because of the increase in our expenses to live a comfortable life and how things are becoming more expensive in general. But when creating another source of income from home and in the online world, you need to watch out for people who are out to take advantage of others.
I learned a lot and have a few binders of my research and a pile of notes that I still look back to check things out or relearn. And I’m going to share my knowledge and help others who want to make extra money from home.
In this post, I will share tips and advice on how to work from home, know how to spot scams, and how to save money with free resources.
Here are several work-at-home tips to help you reach your goals:
What kind of tools do you need?
For tools and supplies, you will need a computer, you can use a tablet or cellphone but a computer or laptop computer will make things easier. But what kind of computer to choose? I’m not exactly sure because you might use a regular computer or a gaming computer. I used an old computer with Windows 7 for the first year haha.
You will also need a headset and a camera. If the camera is already connected to the computer like a laptop, I would suggest covering the camera lens when not using the camera in case your computer were to get hacked and you were to be watched by the hacker.
Other supplies are a notepad and a pen or pencil to take notes with. I read a lot of studyblr (Study or academic blogs on Tumblr) posts about productivity tips and the most popular stationery that people use to take notes and for their work. Most are affordable but some are a bit expensive.
As for tools, you do not need to pay for expensive tools to help run your business. Some of a bit of a learning curve but they are great to use at home and on the go. Here is a small list of free tools you can use:
Evernote, you can synchronize your notes on different devices and you can take screenshots with the Google Chrome extension.
Trello, is an organizational tool to help organize your work, research, and marketing strategies.
Google, Docs, Sheets, Gmail, Google my Business, Analytics, almost everything Google.
Zoom, to host meetings and webinars.
Loom, you can create tutorials or record a project you are working on.
Awesome screenshot is a tool that you can take screenshots with and add some drawings to them like arrows or notes.
Grammarly helps check your spelling and that the grammar is okay.
Wisestamp, adds a sort of business card at the end of your emails.
Toggle, to record the time you are working on something in your business or when you are working on a project for a client.
Workona, as online entrepreneurs we bookmark a lot of things or have a lot of tabs open. This tool saves some time by having the tabs that you want open or available open all at the same time without having to open them all one by one.
Canva, you can use this to create graphics or edit pictures for your content.
How long does it take to make money?
Sometimes you will see that some people succeeded in a short time span, but that is not always the case for everyone. It can sometimes take months or even over a year before you earn any money from your efforts.
You can do this the fast way, but it’s expensive, and I mean hundreds or thousands of dollars. The other way may be a little slower, but it’s totally okay for us to go at our own pace because it’s not a race. And you don’t want to get stuck in the comparison game where others seem far ahead of you, they started where you started too.
Everyone started at different times and with little or no resources. I started with a really small budget and everything was pretty much self-taught and I didn’t earn any money until about a year and a half into my online business journey.
Have more than one email address
In the online world, it’s best to have more than one email address. Gmail is a good email tool to create an email account, it has a better spam filter than other email tools. You can create an email account for business and one for newsletter subscriptions.
You may end up subscribing to a lot of different email lists by other bloggers and entrepreneurs. This will help keep your business account from being swamped by hundreds of emails you may receive.
I did a little test with this with an email address that I use for newsletter subscriptions, I was subscribed to maybe over 75 people. I left my email alone for about a week and found over 500 unopened emails waiting for me.
Improve your skills and learn new ones
You may already have skills like great typing speed and accuracy or creating graphics with a graphic design tool like photoshop. To keep our skills up to date we need to continue practicing them and show what we can create.
Daily Grammar helps with exercises to practice writing and improve your grammar so that your writing flows more smoothly.
Purdue OWL’s resumes and vitas, have some good writing tips for resumes and cover letters.
Typing Master, has a few other sites where you can check your typing speed and improve your typing speed and accuracy. I personally use Typing Trainer and it’s free.
Youtube is a great place to learn about the tools and marketing strategies that most entrepreneurs are currently using, like creating a website, WordPress, and SEO.
And you can learn from other bloggers and entrepreneurs from their content on their websites, social media, ebooks, courses, and programs. Some are free and others are not. The ones that are not free can be at an affordable price (under $20) or quite expensive (hundreds or thousands). You may even find some in affordable bundles like the ones at Ultimate Bundles. I also found great deals in newsletters I’m subscribed to too.
Other work-at-home websites and resources
Do you know that saying “if it’s too good to be true it probably is”? Remember it when something does look too good, like “earn hundreds of dollars doing nothing” or “earn a full-time income (insert something supposedly easy)”, because it’s usually a scam or the pay is very low like a few cents an hour. Seriously, I’ve tried a few just to test them out, it was time-consuming and I didn’t even make a dollar in an hour.
These websites below have more work-at-home tips and teach you how to watch out for scams and where to find legitimate jobs, make extra income, or even create your own business from home.
Anna from Real Ways to Earn Money Online
Angie from The Work at Home Wife
Holly from The Work at Home Woman
Websites and resources that help improve its legitimacy
There are some websites that are devoted to sharing information and working experiences at certain businesses to help with deciding which business to work with. One of these websites is Glassdoor.
Glassdoor: if there is a survey panel or a website that you’re not sure is legit, Glassdoor will most likely have some information and reviews about it. And they have reviews on websites to help you learn more about it.
And you can check Facebook groups and other forums for work-at-home tips, and that support work-at-home jobs and businesses.
Facebook groups and Forums
Other great places to find info, tips, and advice about work-at-home opportunities are Facebook groups, LinkedIn groups, and various forums on certain topics like one for transcription.
These places are great for networking with others, conversing, and learning with people that have similar interests and goals as you. You can make friends and have a sort of support group to support each other towards your goals. It’s a little easier to have support in your work-at-home journey than to do everything alone.
Lately, though there are a lot of people impersonating others on social media platforms, check their profiles and the URL of their accounts to see if it’s the actual person and not a scammer.
Read and Research
There will be a lot of reading and researching to do in your work-at-home journey where you will learn almost all things about running a business. There’s creating a website, social media marketing, content marketing, email marketing, graphic design, and creating videos.
It can be overwhelming, and when it does get overwhelming it’s okay to take a break from it all. Take a break from it and come back with a plan of action to reach your goals.
Also, all this reading and research on work-at-home tips and advice can help with spotting what may be a scam or something that seemed popular might not be worth exploring to save time and energy.
Shiny Object Syndrome
Shiny Object Syndrome or Squirrel Syndrome, this is not exactly the description of it but it’s where in this case something is trending and you want what everyone has.
For example, a marketing strategy that involves Facebook or Instagram is trending at the moment and you feel that you need it because it seems like everyone is using the same marketing strategy and you don’t want to get left behind.
People will always be promoting courses and ebooks at great prices and we feel like we need them too. But do you really need them?
I spent a lot of money on courses and ebooks that are not related to my niche, or business plan, or that I don’t even need because I felt I may need them sometime down the road. I still haven’t used some of them today.
Do I need a website?
It is possible to build a business without a website and succeed with social media. But there are benefits to having your own website like:
- It shows that you’re serious about your business goals.
- It gives a feel of professionalism.
- You can sell physical or digital products there.
- You can offer your services there.
- Create a membership site.
- You’re own rules.
- Use it as a portfolio to showcase your work.
- To blog on.
- To create multiple sources of income (like blogging and affiliate marketing)
The free route or the paid route? With the free route, there will be more restrictions to design, monetization opportunities, and ads that you have little control over. With the paid route it doesn’t have to be super expensive, I’ve invested roughly $200 on my website.
The paid route is the better option but there will be a bit of a learning curve if you do it yourself (DIY) and maintain it. It will involve the things listed below:
- Choosing which platform to build with, like WordPress, Squarespace, and Wix.
- Choosing which hosting to go with if you build with WordPress.
- Choosing a Theme, a Theme helps with the design or look of your website.
- Which WordPress plugins to use.
- Keeping your website and plugins maintained and updated.
- Google Analytics
- Improve security to prevent hacking.
- Backup files of your work, you will want a copy in case you accidentally delete everything.
If you do not want to deal with the tech side of things like creating a website and maintaining it, you can hire someone to do this for you.
There will be times when we feel like we are imposters or not ready to teach or share our content and work, I sure have. But if you keep waiting till “the time is right” you will be waiting for a long time because there is no such thing as the right time to launch your business.
Sometimes I still feel like an imposter because I don’t have a certificate or degree in business or something. I don’t have these things but I have taken a lot of courses online and am working towards a Bachelor of Science degree.
It can feel nerve-wracking when launching a new business or starting a new journey or chapter in your life. In this situation, it helps to just launch your business and leave it for a few days. I got anxious about launching my business and leaving it for a few days helped lower it.
Other ways to overcome this mindset where you feel you are not ready or have nothing to teach others, are guided meditations, support in Facebook groups, or having a mentor guide you.
This Youtube channel Rising Higher Meditation has a lot of soothing guided meditations to meditate to.
Create a Vision Board
To help keep us on track towards our goals, it helps to have a vision board nearby. I keep mine by my computer and one near my bed. It has pictures of what I want, motivational quotes, and the people I love and care for.
Whenever I need motivation or remember why I started this journey, I look at my vision board.
The first year working from home is mostly reading and learning, and it’s the toughest. Keep a journal to help keep track of your goals and look back at your accomplishments, even if they seem small, celebrate them.
This is a long journey, not a get-rich-quick scheme. There will be times when we feel like we are not getting anywhere. But we need to keep moving forward. Some of the keys to reaching success are patience and consistency, keep taking action every day even if it’s one task to reach your goals. We can do this!
I hope you found this post on work-at-home tips useful, and if you have any questions, leave them in the comments section and I’ll answer to the best of my ability. Thanks for reading and have a great day 🙂