Is Making Money Online Possible? And How I Made (almost) Nothing

Are you hoping to make some extra money online? I’m sure you are. No? Well, I am! Preferably quickly and a lot of it too. Ha. The only question is how? I think most people at one point asked Google this very question.  I surely asked, and not just once. In 2006 when I first moved from DC to New York City, while starting off working as sales representative at Macy’s, I figured I needed to be making more than $12 per hour pretty soon. I quickly found out that being an international student visa holder was not too helpful in getting a steady, well paid job. In between sending my resume out to pretty much every job posting on Craigslist, I started looking for options to make money online.

Is Making Money Online Possible

Well, I don’t remember much from that time period except two things:

A. creating literally hundreds of online accounts to ‘qualify’ for being sent ‘further info’ (I am being spammed to this day)

and B. getting ripped off and actually losing money (rather than making it)

To explain the latter, I answered an ad, author of which bragged about making $1,000+ per month via his online business that takes up 1-2 hours a day at most. Business that anyone can start just about anytime. $1,000 sounded like a reasonable amount (as compared to other ads). To hear all his secrets, one had to send him $10 through paypay. After long and hard consideration I set up a paypay account (the only positive outcome since I am using the same paypal account to this day) and paid the $10. I paid and nothing happened, no follow up email, no instructions, no nothing. So I reached out and the reply I got (I actually can’t even believe that I got a reply) literally made me livid. The reply was more or less somewhere between these lines:

This is the business. You just made me $10. Easy $1,000 a month, just like a said”. Ugh… I felt like a complete idiot.  And what does one do hearing this? Sue him, and how? Notify paypal? Laugh? In my case I just took it as a good lesson, as I am sure many people did.


(especially a stranger from CRAIGSLIST)

Regardless, I have tried ‘poking around’ trying to find ways to make some money online. After all, especially recently, it is almost impossible not to stumble upon yet another article listing 100 ways detailing ways on how to do it.

I will share with you my experience and what I have tried this far:

1. I tried selling my photos

I don’t have a professional camera but my beloved iPhone 6 (courtesy of my current employer) takes pretty darn good photos. I mean, some of them are amazing even with no filter ;). Considering I snap photos constantly, I have accumulated thousands of them.

I have stumbled upon a rather thorough list of legit sites where one can sell photos. I signed up, uploaded my info and photos and was ready to get to selling 😉 Noone EVER was interested in getting a single photo from me.

I made $0

2. I tried becoming a virtual assistant

I mean, I AM The Executive Assistant. This is what I do for a living in Manhattan, NY. This is what I have been doing for the last 10 years so one would say I am quite experienced. Through doing work for my boss I am dealing with ‘crème de la crème’. This includes being in touch with the biggest people in the music industry (yep, Lady Bee’s team as well), event production for 60K+ attendees, coordinating complex business trips, you name it. And yet when I signed up to Elance ready to make some extra money on the weekends, no one ever had any interest in hiring me. #overqualified?

I made $0

3. I set up ad sense on my blog

Yes, the 2 ads you see in the right column 😉 I set up an account with ad sense last year when I set up my first blog and have been making a few pennies each day. Literally 1 year later I am at a whooping $52.18. Now, I don’t even own this money yet as unless I get to $100 it will never be paid. Slow and steady, slow and steady.

Is making money online possible?

4.  I have tried Swagbucks

Everyone knows Swagbucks I am sure. Ok, so I made some money on swagbucks but only through online purchases. Whenever I have anything to purchase for my office or boss I go through Swagbucks or Ebates. More Ebates really as once you purchase whatever you purchase the cash back is added automatically to your account. With Swagbucks it takes literally forever.

I stopped bothering with filling questionnaires and taking quizzes or surveys through Swagbucks. I find them a total waste of time and also the process is very misleading. Most surveys I ever took (5 or 6 total), would take my personal info only to inform me that I do not qualify to continue with the survey.

I just checked both my Swagbucks and Ebates accounts to see how much I made for the last 4-5 years.

Swagbucks – I earned 37,430 swagbucks total. Considering I would usually cash out 2,500 swagbucks for a $25 paypal card, I made somewhere around $350 (+am very close to another $25)

EbatesI made $236


Are YOU making any money online? How?



  1. Becky says:

    That’s kind of funny, but sad. I am still quite new to blogging, and I always wondered if people made any money from it. I do have a friend who was able to make some–some months she still gets $50-60 from a blog she closed down quite a while ago. BUT, she had a huge readership, which makes a difference, I think. (I’m talking 70,000 hits a month or so). I plan to have a good talk with her one of these days and see what her secrets are.For me, it’s a hobby and a creative outlet right now.

    • SimpleIsGood4U says:

      Oh, man, yes, definitely the blogging part is a hobby. Just for the hosting and the domain fees for the last two years I paid more than $250. I could probably use some free options but I just feel more comfortable knowing I own the content and can take it all offline if I choose to. Just like I did with the old blog a couple of months ago.
      I do believe that making any money on blogging one must treat it as business. And business requires business plan and daily full attention. For me, while having a more than full time job, I would never be able to do that.
      Anyway, I wrote this post with a light heart ;). There are just so many posts on the topic, so many ‘online income reports’ practically on half the blogs I read, that it may seem to some readers that it is so very easy. I rarely see a post describing how hard it is to make money online.

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