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How to Make Money on PayPal: The Online Payment Processor You Need!

By Shane Dayton |

PayPal has become one of those online tools that has become synonymous with making money online. While it’s not a direct strategy or method, it’s a very useful tool that allows people to accept and make payments from credit cards, debit cards, or other PayPal accounts. This makes buying and selling online much more viable. Especially for those of us who can’t afford a merchant account. Or for those of us for whom it doesn’t really make sense.

PayPal is a tool that has become synonymous with making money online. While that won’t be directly, it is a tool that you will want if you are going to take advantage of all the options out there. Read on to learn how PayPal can help you make money.

Using PayPal

There are many good reasons for having a PayPal account. This is one of the most widely tools online any time money is transferred. This is also one of the most widely accepted payment methods. Easy to attach to a bank account or credit card, PayPal is a necessary tool on today’s internet. There’s no free money when it comes to PayPal, but this online tool is crucial for getting paid for products and services offered online.

Setting up an account is extremely easy. It only takes a few minutes to set up, and the process is very step by step. You will need an e-mail address as well as a bank account with the routing information for your bank (found on any paper check). Other than that, just follow the step by step guide the website gives you during sign up.

In a few minutes you can have a PayPal account. For most people a personal account will be enough, even if they are planning on doing some side hustles, filling out online surveys, or taking advantage of “point to cash” based smartphone apps. However, there are times where having a business PayPal account will make sense.

PayPal home page screenshot

Personal Account vs. Business Account

The two major choices for a PayPal account are personal PayPal accounts and business PayPal accounts. PayPal is available in most countries internationally. For most people the personal account is enough. There are some advantages to this. Giving money as a gift doesn’t cost a percentage like every transaction on business does. You can even receive money online without breaking the terms of service.

PayPal even discusses this a bit under their FAQ here. Receiving money for some side work is perfectly fine.

Business accounts are for actual merchants or individuals who operate under an LLC or company name. This gives a series of additional tools and benefits that actual online businesses and merchants are likely to find useful. There are also going to be more fees involved. But that’s to be expected out of any business account.

The fees actually tend to be reasonable in the 1-3% area and are very comparable to what other online payment processors offer. If you’re building an online business, especially if incorporated, then you’ll want the business account. Otherwise the personal account is going to be more than enough for 99% of people out there.

This makes things easier since you can get paid cash from a variety of online options with either account type.

Money from Saving

piggy bank and coins

There are many different options for apps, online coupons, and other money-saving online tools that use PayPal to help get you your savings or rebate. So how does this work?

This will vary a little bit depending on what apps you’re using to save money. There are several different options that involve tying your PayPal account to an app that then helps you save money while doing shopping or buying that you were planning on doing anyway.

Ibotta, for example, is a shopping based app. They work like an online coupon extension. You make purchases on your smartphone or PC, Ibotta sees if they can find any savings that you haven’t used, you get most of the cash discount deposited back to you in PayPal while they get a small percentage of the amount they saved you.

Other coupon or savings apps like Rakuten, Honey, or Dosh Rewards basically work the same way. Once you reach the pay-off threshold (usually $10, $20, or $25) then you can cash out via PayPal to get your money. Some people prefer gift cards, which can be an option. That said, for those who prefer cash over gift cards PayPal users have that additional option.

Money from Working

If you want to create side gigs working online, you want a PayPal account. This is one of the easiest way for an employer to pay you whether directly from their business accounts, a personal account, or even using a credit card. If you work online as a freelancer or remote worker, you are generally expected to have a PayPal account.

There are many ways to make money online. Having a PayPal account makes it easy for people to hire you. It makes it easy for you to sell things. Above all else, it is a tool that helps you get paid.

Freelance Writing

Making money writing is without a doubt one of the most popular side gigs out there. There are even hundreds of thousands of people who make a good full-time living doing this. PayPal is perhaps the most commonly used ways of making payments.

Most writing platforms like Fivver.com or Upwork.com offer PayPal as a payment option. When dealing with clients individually, PayPal is the most common payment method used. This makes payment easy and provides security for both the buyer and the seller.

The demand for freelance writing is huge. Dust off those old skills from English class, consider a class like Earn More Writing to bring the skills up to date, and have a PayPal account ready to receive payments for work that is well done!

Virtual Assistant Duties

This is a side gig that can be exceptional for people with good organizational skills, who know how to multi-task, and who don’t have any problem with jumping on the phone. A VA is often called on for a wide variety of tasks from acting as gatekeeper for one or multiple e-mail accounts, managing social media platforms, making & taking phone calls, as well as taking care of a number of “odds and ends” that are required of any online business on weekly or monthly basis, but aren’t cost-effective for an online entrepreneur to spend time on herself or himself.

For the proverbial “Jack of All Trades” who has some skill in a lot of areas this could be a perfect fit! Set a good rate, send a contract, take payments via PayPal and you are suddenly setup with a great remote working gig!

Graphic Design Work

Graphic design is an area with a lot of competition, but tons of opportunity, as well. Finding direct clients is one way to do freelance design work in exchange for secure payment via PayPal. No doubt about it, there are many opportunities there. But always protect yourself with a work contract.

There are also several creative ways where design work can be done online. There are numerous online t-shirt stores like Teespring or Cafe Press where someone with a quick wit and good design skills can create their own t-shirts, mugs, and other merchandise to sell directly. This takes some work to get moving. Most successful stores also talk about the importance of trial and error to learn firsthand what works. Or doesn’t.

If this sounds intimidating, there are multiple quality classes on Udemy and Skillshare. Look for the highly rated courses from teachers who have actually succeeded at running an online store. You want the firsthand experience they can offer.

This won’t be for everyone, but the potential is remarkable. Many people gross five figures a month with their designs.

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Learn Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing still offers an incredible number of opportunities for making money online. There are so many different types of affiliate programs out there that pay you for promoting projects. Many of these programs will pay directly to a bank account. If you don’t like that option, or they don’t offer that option, then PayPal is your best alternative in most cases.

If you can get traffic from an online source, the combination of affiliate marketing and PayPal can mean some major paydays. This goes for marketing with affiliate websites as well as YouTube affiliate marketing or even social media marketing.

If you know you need a crash course in the best affiliate marketing practices, there are two programs that clearly stand out from the pack. There’s the Income School’s Project 24 and Authority Hacker’s Authority Site System. These are paid memberships, but you learn detailed affiliate marketing tactics from some of the best out there.

Either course is like cramming over five years of knowledge, experience, and skill into a course that lets you learn all of it in months. It’s a good way to get a leg up and make sure your affiliate marketing efforts start paying earlier rather than later. There are many ways to make money online and it’s hard to argue that affiliate marketing isn’t one of the best options out there for getting paid for your online work.

Learn How to start Affiliate marketing right here.

Selling Old Stuff

PayPal started all the way back in 1998 under the original name of Confinity and was attached with eBay as early as 2002. For nearly a decade you couldn’t mention one without the other. PayPal was made to allow online buying and selling. So nobody should be surprised by the idea that selling things online can be a great way to make money with PayPal.

While eBay no longer takes PayPal, there are plenty of options out there. You can sell items directly and take PayPal. You can also use online classifieds like Craigslist. Receive the payment, then hand over or mail the item. There are even websites like Decluttr that specialize in buying certain things from you and paying via PayPal.

You get the money and they sell the items.

There are many different things you can sell and accept PayPal payments for. Old books, clothes, and collectibles are always in high demand. Online arbitrage opens up a wide array of opportunities to buy things cheap in one place and then sell them online elsewhere.

You need PayPal to fund both the buying and the selling. There are plenty of options for using PayPal’s tools to help all your side gig opportunities. Especially when working or accepting payment online.

Stay Away from Surveys

Survey Junkie page

While we’re at it it’s now time to talk about those get paid to take online surveys ads you see everywhere online. You also see many blogs promoting paid surveys and talking about how you can start earning right away just from taking surveys from advertisers who want to hear from you, today! Does this sound like those spammy too-good to be true advertisements from the early days of spam email?

Congratulations, you are right to smell a rat. Now that being said, I have to be careful talking about how to make money with surveys. Is this possible? Yes, actually it is. There are several paid survey companies online that will pay you via PayPal or with a gift card of your choice.

Either way this usually works by earning a set amount of points from when you take surveys. Once you do enough of these paid surveys to get a certain number, you can then redeem your points for cash. Generally a point is equivalent to one penny. It takes so many hours of surveys to get a pittance of a payout.

Are talking online surveys lucrative and worth your time for the money you get paid? In my opinion, and my experience, absolutely not. Now in fairness, I’ve heard from online blogs that female online shoppers tend to get a better selection of surveys and qualify for more of the “higher paying” options. That could be true, I’ve never been able to fully verify this with hard numbers despite numerous attempts to reach out.

My suspicions are that this is true in the same way it’s true you can make money via PayPal completing surveys. It’s technically correct, but not such a big difference as to change my overall stance on paid surveys.

There are many different survey websites out there. It doesn’t take long to realize there are two or three survey sites that are seen as tops.

An example of this is the Swagbucks app. This is similar to the way that paid online surveys but it is slightly more extensive. There are paid surveys, as well as points for shopping online, watching video ads, or even searching for certain terms on the web. The tasks change from day to day, and the “Swag Bucks” rewarded for each varies based on the task.

The Swagbucks can then be cashed in starting at $10 for a payment directly from PayPal.

Swagbucks isn’t the only survey slash task site. There are plenty that can be found online including PrizeRebel, Prolific, and Grindabuck to name three. While there are plenty of options, there are almost certainly much better ways for you to earn money with your free time.

If you decide to go this route anyway you do have some potential to start earning with paid surveys, but you will need to keep your expectations in check. Whether paid by gift card or cash you will only earn a very modest amount of money. You will want to make sure to use a separate email address. You don’t want your personal email address flooded with paid survey, earn new gift card, or get paid taking survey emails. They can absolutely flood and overwhelm your inbox. So create a separate address just for these, if you go that route.

Are There Any Alternatives to PayPal?

There are many different payment options available online. None have the size or widespread acceptance of PayPal. However, if you want a different tool there are options. Google Wallet, Amazon Pay, TransferWise, and Stripe are all good options.

While in most cases it makes sense to go with PayPal, these are viable options for most individuals. Knowing which payment processor is best for you will require research based on your specific situation. You will also want to make sure any sites you’re using to make money accept whatever PayPal or PayPal alternative you’re looking at.

Conclusion

While PayPal isn’t going to make you money in and of itself, this is an incredibly useful tool for making money online through other endeavors. Whether you are taking payments directly for an online business or receiving payments for services rendered, there’s no denying PayPal is a major piece of the puzzle when it comes to making money online.

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Niche Business Ideas

By Shane Dayton

Shane has been a full-time writer since 2005. Shane has a degree in English & Creative Writing from Coe College (2002) and an MFA in Creative Writing (Fiction Emphasis) from the University of Alaska Fairbanks (2007).

Shane spent years using his online writing skills to earn a living online and live the life of a digital nomad. After learning about affiliate marketing and SEO he has since created several niche sites to further increase his business income.

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