Being a single mom isn’t easy, and working a 2nd job to make ends meet isn’t going to make it any easier. But let’s get real for a second – complaining about it isn’t going to get you anywhere. There are ways to improve your current situation, but you need to be willing to work in order to get there.
Working online from home sounds like a perfect solution. There’s just one problem. Anything you look up online is going to cost you money to join, and to be frank, a lot of it is get-rich-quick schemes.
So how can you work online from home, for cheap, without getting caught up in a scam?
There are many ways to start a legitimate online business, but the one that I do is called Affiliate marketing. Personally, I think it’s the best way for single moms to earn money in their spare time. I’ve been doing it for about 10 years, and NO, I didn’t go to school to learn it – I learned everything I needed to know online.
I’m no genius or computer scientist, so if I can do it, you can too. There’s a lot of stuff to cover, so let’s get started.
Struggles Unique To Single Moms
Everyone wants to earn more money, right? So what makes single moms any different?
First off, time. Being a single parent means that time management is going to be a real struggle, no matter what. You’ve already got a full time job, but on top of that you also have to make sure the kids are fed and getting to school on time.
Taking up a second job in the evenings or weekends means less time with the kids. It’s a horrible tradeoff – trying to support a family by working a lot but then you never get to see them!
Secondly, it can seem like you have no time to yourself. If it’s not the boss asking something of you its the kids. If you get a second job, that’s a second boss you’ve got to worry about. Spreading yourself too thin can cause low-level, constant stress, and run you ragged. That usually translates to less patience with your children, and stressed family relationships.
And what about the future?
On top of maintaining a job and family, you also have to plan for your future retirement. These days, most companies don’t offer very good retirement plans, so you really need to think of a strategy to earn extra money for emergencies, and have a little something extra so you aren’t stuck on a fixed income in your 60’s.
The reason I like affiliate marketing for single parents so much is that it fixes a lot of those problems.
- You get to work from home, so can spend more time with the kids
- You can work on your affiliate website at any time, on your schedule
- Startup costs are low-risk
- You get to learn valuable skills while you build your site (WordPress, Search Engine Optimization, article writing)
- Websites earns money 24/7, so you can save extra money
- Your income can grow over time as your website grows (give yourself a raise!)
The Basic Concepts of Affiliate Marketing
The first thing you will have to do is make a website. I know that sounds scary, and if you’ve never build a site before, you are probably thinking, “OMG! No way. I do not want to learn code”.
Actually, coding knowledge is no longer required to build a website. Just like you can drive a car and not know how the engine works, you can make a website and not know how the coding works. I don’t know any code either.
The building of the site can be done in a few minutes with the push of a button.
After you build your website, you will have to write articles for it. These are going to be informative articles that will help people find information they are looking for when they search for something online. Yes, your website will be listed in Bing, Google, and Yahoo, and there’s no fee to listing your website.
You will also sign up for what’s called an “affiliate program“. Many big companies like Walmart or Amazon have an affiliate program. They are free to join, so you can see why I’m saying this is a super cheap way to build a business, right?
Within the affiliate program, you get a special link that identifies you as an affiliate of the company, and if someone clicks that link and buys something, you make a commission.
The “work” you’ll be doing is mostly writing articles. That can include writing product reviews, tutorials, or information about news happening related to the topic of your website. Within the articles you write you’ll place affiliate links or banners ads.
When someone comes to your website for information, they might click an ad or and affiliate link, and that’s how you make money with your website.
That’s how affiliate marketing works, and that’s I make money on the internet.
What to Write About On Your Website
What to write about on their website is something people usually stress about in the beginning. They don’t know what they want to make their site about, or they have an idea but are not confident enough to start writing.
Actually, this freedom is one of the most awesome parts of affiliate marketing! It means that you can make a website about any topic you want, and you can write about any idea related to your website topic.
If your website is about essential oils, then you can write about how to make your own essential oils at home. If your website is about losing weight, you can write about the keto diet, or how to make low-calorie recipes.
You could make a website about raising a big family, and write about how to find cheap activities the whole family could do. Many people make a travel website, and focus on a specific type of travel like budget travel, luxury travel, or even just luggage reviews.
Downsides to Consider
There are some costs involved, and you won’t start making money right away. A domain costs $14/year. Your website, though you can build it for free, will eventually cost money for hosting. That usually costs between $10-$50/month for a single website.
Building an affiliate website should not be a last ditch effort to pay the rent. This is a long-term venture which will take time to gain momentum.
I have a lot of single moms comment on my site and tell me that they have bills to pay and they need a guaranteed, free, easy way start generating money instantly. Sorry, but it doesn’t exist. This is how gurus and scam artists are able to survive so well on the internet. They sell you a dream, and bill you $197 for it.
You’ll also need to be persistent, or at least stubborn about working through problems you run into. It takes time to learn any new skill, and you will not be very good at this when you start. You are going to run into frustrating situations, and you are very likely going to doubt that you were “cut out for this”.
I see people quit all the time. But I also see people who refuse to quit, then look back and laugh at the silly mistakes they were making before.
4 Things To Keep In Mind
1) You are going to be learning a new skill. You can learn how to earn money just like playing the piano, or speaking Spanish.
2) Affiliate marketing can fix the root problem of your situation, which is not having enough time in the day. Your website is online 24/7, and anyone can buy something anywhere in the world. A normal job will require you to work more hours for more pay! A normal job means you’ll probably need a baby sitter and be driving more, which is basically paying more money to make money.
3) It’s possible to create a full time income and raise a family from an affiliate website. I definitely do not recommend you quit your job tomorrow, but long term, six figures from your website is possible. I did it.
4) There are other ways to earn money from home you can “stack” up later. With your website, there are many more income opportunities that will open up. You can build an email list, make money from YouTube videos, or even get paid to feature content from advertisers(sponsored posts!).
You Can Make A Lot Of Money Doing This
It may seem unachievable right now, but there are tons of examples of normal, everyday people making great money from a blog. Thousands – tens of thousands of dollars – is possible when you put in the effort to publishing content on your blog. You can make it a blog about being a mom, or about something else entirely. It’s up to you. Everyone shops online these days, so there’s a huge variety of products you can promote.
The key here is to get your mindset right. You don’t have need a degree in computer science, and you don’t need to be a marketing expert. As long as you can type out your thoughts and hit the publish button, then this is a potential career path.
Of course, being a single mom, time constraints are a huge issue. You need to be able to dedicate at least 1-2 hours per day and extra time on the weekends in order to get your site earning within a year or two. It takes time to learn the basics and establish a presence in search engines. This is not a get-rich-quick thing to solve all your problems overnight. However, the awesome thing about affiliate marketing is that it’s accessible to anyone and is one of the lowest cost businesses to star (no inventory required)!
How To Get Started
Because teaching affiliate marketing is what I do here on One More Cup of Coffee, I have a free beginners course to walk you through more basic concepts of how to start your first website, and where to get the proper training. One lesson will be delivered each day to your inbox. You can ask questions along the way either via email, or on the lesson itself. I respond to EVERYONE.
Want to know something before you get started? Leave a comment below!