Whether you are looking for a side hustle while you juggle school and an internship, or you find yourself suddenly out of a part-time job on campus (due to Coronavirus), I’ve rounded up over 15 online jobs for college students in 2020 that you can look into. It’s easier than ever to make money online, and there are a lot of virtual work opportunities that do not require a degree.
The majority of online jobs allow you to work from anywhere, and in many cases set your own hours. This kind of flexibility is extremely helpful for busy college students who are trying to earn money in between coursework and extracurriculars, in order to pay down student loans or have a little spending money for college social activities.
You may be equipped with the knowledge and skills to start some of these online jobs today. Others may require a little bit of effort on your part, in order to learn a new skill or build a portfolio. All of them are worth looking into. Remember to approach your pursuit of online jobs with a growth mindset, and patience for yourself, as you learn along the way. Now, if you’re ready to dive in, let’s review over 15 online jobs for college students in 2020. Time for you to start earning money and adding skills to your resume!
Easy Online Opportunities for College Students
Let’s start with a couple ways to make money online that you are perfectly suited for as a college student.
Sell your notes online
Are you a great notetaker? Do your friends always ask to copy your notes? Then selling your notes online could be a great way for you to make some money.
- Check out StudySoup and apply to be an Elite Notetaker.
- Earn up to $500 per course. Top performers on the StudySoup platform have been known to make as much as $2000 in a semester — the more students in your classes, the higher your earning potential.
- Earn additional money for referring friends to be Elite Notetakers with StudySoup, as well.
Sell your used textbooks online
Chances are you have some textbooks lying around that you are no longer using. Why not sell them back and get some money for them? You don’t have to be selling these back to a physical bookstore on campus, there are plenty of options for textbook buyback available online.
- Check out a site like Bookscouter.com, which sources prices from multiple book buyback sites in minutes. Then, from Bookscouter’s aggregated list, pick the seller you want to work with based on the price they are offering and their seller ratings.
- Earn a percentage of the book’s original price. This will vary by book, edition, condition and demand. Pro Tip: Sell during high-demand seasons in the school year. (No, you won’t get back what you paid for it, but at least it’s something…the book isn’t sitting on a shelf collecting dust, it’s putting some money back in your pocket.)
- Earn additional money by offering to help your lazy friends sell their used textbooks, and charge them a commission for doing so.
Online Freelance Work for College Students
Depending on your skills, time and hustle, there are a number of different freelance jobs you could land as a college student. You can write articles for blogs or online media outlets, copy for a website, or scripts for videos. You can work as a freelance graphic designer and produce logos, presentations and video graphics, or illustrations for web design. Or if you have web development skills, you can work as a freelance web developer and help businesses build and enhance their websites.
- Check out sites like Fiverr, Upwork, Thumbtack and 99designs to find a variety of freelance work requests. Create a profile, and portfolio of your work, and pitch yourself in order to land freelance gigs. You can also reach out and pitch your work directly to blogs and websites. When it comes to freelance writing, many sites will have a contact section for guest contributions.
- Earn by the hour or a fixed fee per project, depending on the type of work and what you negotiate in the terms of your freelance statement of work. Freelance gigs can range anywhere from $30/hr for graphic design projects, to $5000/project for web development. When you’re just starting out, do your research to see what average rates are and work your way up from there. Note: The popular websites I mentioned for finding freelance gigs do charge services fees, so you’ll want to take that into consideration when setting your rates.
- Earn more as you begin to establish a name for yourself. If you are truly skilled in an area, and you build up a strong portfolio of work, you can make very good money freelancing while in college.
Social Media Jobs for College Students
Chances are you are pretty active on social media, and you’re likely pretty savvy with it. Think about how you can use your knowledge of social media to help a local business in your community establish and grow their online presence.
- Check out sites like Fiverr, Upwork and Thumbtack and see what types of social media tasks people are posting. Then based on your social media strengths, craft your profile and pitch yourself for the gigs that interest you the most. You can also directly pitch local businesses in your area. Do some research on their social media accounts and pitch them ideas for how you can help them improve.
- Earn by the hour or a fixed fee per project. Based on my research, when you’re just getting started you can expect around $20/hr.
- Earn more by getting some quick wins for a client and then working with them to establish a retainer deal where they engage you to do a set amount of social media work for them each month (For example: four Instagram posts per week).
Online Tutoring Jobs for College Students
You don’t have to be an education major to get an online tutoring job as a college student. Are you strong at a particular subject? You may be able to tutor peers who are struggling to keep up in college or younger students (K-12), using your subject matter expertise. Are you bilingual? You could work one-on-one with people online to help them learn a language, just by having virtual conversations with them. Finally, you can teach English to students from other parts of the world.
- Check out sites like Tutor.com, Chegg or Wyzant for tutoring opportunities on a variety of subjects. Check out italki and VIPKid for online teaching opportunities specific to language. Note: Some of these sites have age and education requirements. Do your research before applying to find the one that you are best suited for.
- Earn, typically, anywhere from $9-$25/hr as an online tutor through these sites. Pay will vary with experience and number of hours you dedicate to tutoring. Note: Sites may take a percentage of earnings as a service fee.
- Earn more in some cases by referring students or other tutors to these platforms.
Would you rather watch a video on this? I made one. Click above to watch.
Short-Term Professional Paid Projects for College Students
I shared about short-term professional paid projects in a video I did on internship alternatives. These are projects from real companies. Tasks that are important to the company, but perhaps not the best use of their time. They are short-term (usually 20-40 hours of work in total) and they are offered across many different departments and areas of a business. A great way to gain professional experience and enhance your resume.
- Check out parkerdewey.com, a company that connects students with employers for short-term paid assignments. Parker Dewey calls these micro-internships, and they work with a variety of industries, as well as partnering with universities, to help place students with opportunities that are a good professional fit. You can also reach out to companies you are interested in working with and pitch yourself for short-term projects that will add value to their organization. Do your research, and identify their needs and areas where you can help them get some quick wins.
- Earn a per project fee, which will vary depending on company, nature of the work and length of the project.
- Earn more by doing quality work and getting asked back for future projects. Or better yet, a part-time or full-time position with the company.
Creative Online Work for College Students
Are you talented with a camera? Or maybe just your iPhone camera? There are options for you to sell photography online. You can sell photos you take to brands, small businesses and creatives who are seeking specific images for their digital or physical media.
- Check out sites like Snapwire or miPic to sell photos or launch your customized print store. Participate in specific photo requests or challenges, or build your portfolio to sell in the general marketplace.
- Earn anywhere from 50-100% of the photo sale price depending on the site and the photo request you are responding to.
- Earn more by participating in higher-paying challenges as your portfolio grows.
E-commerce Marketplace Options for College Students
Have you ever purchased something from Etsy, eBay or Poshmark? Well why not become a seller on one of these platforms instead of just a buyer? Whether you are selling collectibles, clothing or your own artwork, you can build a brand for yourself and make some good money using the online marketplaces that already exist.
- Check out Etsy to sell handcrafted products, artwork, jewelry, decor and more. Use eBay to sell collectibles, books, clothing, electronics…just about anything. And check out companies like Poshmark or thredUP to sell and consign your clothing. Some of these e-commerce marketplace sites are easier to set up than others. Do your research and choose what makes the most sense for you and what you are hoping to sell.
- Earn based on how you price your products and how much you have to sell. Note that these sites will take a percentage of your sale as a service fee.
- Earn more by buying items at lower than usual prices and selling them on these marketplaces for a greater profit. For example: find a valuable antique for cheap at a garage sale and sell it for what it is actually worth on Etsy.
Online Customer Support Work for College Students
Companies like Apple offer some great remote work opportunities for college students. A company name like that is not bad to have on your resume, no matter how small the job.
- Check out Apple’s job opportunities page and use the search term Apple Support College Program. This will pull up open jobs at Apple that are available to students at a variety of colleges and universities. Search to see if your school is listed and read the job description and requirements. Then apply if you think you’d be a good fit as a customer support representative for Apple.
- Earn where you learn, by working from school or home. Per Apple, the position comes with competitive pay, eligibility to participate in their company stock plan, paid time off, employee product discounts, and dedicated resources to support your ongoing growth and career development.
- Earn more by potentially qualifying for tuition reimbursement from Apple.
Virtual Transcription Service Work for College Students
Taking audio or video content and transcribing it into written form is an online job that doesn’t have many requirements. You need spelling and grammar proficiency, and a good typing speed. A transcription job gives you a lot of flexibility when it comes to the hours that you work. You can even do it in the middle of the night if you really wanted to.
- Check out sites like rev.com and scribie.com for video and audio transcriber positions that you can apply for. Choose from a variety of projects with no limits on the amount of work you can choose to do. Amazon also has virtual transcription roles for their Alexa product. Search for Data Associate, Alexa Data Services on Amazon’s careers page to find those opportunities.
- Earn by the minute, and make anywhere from $5-$25/hr depending on the project and how fast you are at transcribing.
- Earn more money if you know a foreign language and are able to translate subtitles.
I just shared with you, over 15 different online jobs for college students in 2020. A variety of ways to make money and build up your resume, all from the comfort of your own home.
Online Work Financial Tips for College Students
A smart money, pro tip: If you require special software or hardware to do your work, be sure to look into any student discounts that may be available. For example, Adobe offers student rates for their software, which comes in handy if you are using their products for graphic design or video editing freelance work. Apple offers student discounts on computers and other products that you may need to do the job, through their education pricing. Always do a quick Google search to see what offers and discounts are available to you as a student.
With all of these options, it’s important that you understand how taxes will be handled. With most freelance work, and positions where you work as an online contractor, you should receive a Form 1099-MISC for tax season. I’m NOT a tax professional, I’m just simply giving you a heads up that taxes are something you need to consider. Be sure to consult with a tax professional to ensure you are preparing your taxes correctly and setting aside enough money to pay taxes, if necessary.
Good luck pursuing these online opportunities. Leave a comment below and let me know if you have any other good tips for college students who are looking to make money online.