Fully Booked VA Blog

Four Legit Ways to Earn Money Working From Home

Today we’re going to hear from Holly Reisem Hanna, founder and publisher of the Work at Home Woman. Named by Forbes as one of the top 100 websites for your career, The Work at Home Woman helps people find remote careers and businesses that feed their souls with job leads, ideas and information.

I (Gina) first met Holly back in 2015. We ran around in the same online circles and first came into contact when we mutually followed each other on Twitter. She became an affiliate for 30 Days or Less to Freelance Writing Success, and our paths have crossed multiple times through various mastermind groups, courses and events. Both of us were born and raised in Minnesota, and we each have roots in Texas now. I guess you could say we were just destined to become friends! 

When it comes to creating legit income from home, Holly is definitely an expert. Let’s hear her ideas about some ways to get started earning money from home right away. Ready?

Back in 2007, before iPhones were mainstream and working from home wasn’t quite the “thing” it is now, I was a new stay-at-home mom looking for a way to earn income without leaving my house.

I had previously worked full-time as a nurse but had zero desire to continue down that career path. I didn’t know what I wanted to do. Through extensive research, networking and persistence, though, I landed a freelance marketing gig and later started my own blog. 

And since then? I’ve never looked back. It’s been ten years since I started my blog, and I’ve helped thousands of women find ways to create income – and the lives they want – all from the comfort of their homes. With the right mindset, drive and focus, anyone can make this dream a reality.

If you want to work remotely, but you’re not sure what your options are or how to find legitimate work, here a few ideas to get you started earning income from home. I’ll also share some info about how to avoid scams, which are unfortunately out there.

Let’s get started…

Customer Service Reps

One of the most popular ways to get started working from home is by providing virtual customer service via email, online chat and or phone. This is a great way to “break in” to remote work because there are so many companies that need customer service, and it’s a highly translatable skill.

The skills, level of experience required and pay rates vary pretty widely in this service niche, but no matter where you fall on the spectrum there are opportunities for everyone.

For example, if you don’t have any customer service experience, you can work with a company like Virtual Vicky, where you’d handle small business owners’ in-coming phone calls.

On the other hand, if you’re a seasoned pro, you can work for a company like AdviseTech, which hires qualified technicians who have ten or more years of experience.

And, if you prefer to be your own boss, you can choose to launch a home-based customer service business through a company like Arise.

Take some time to take inventory of your skills, experience, goals and desires. What exactly is it you’re looking to get out of working from home and what do you want it to “look like?”

That’s a major part of the beauty of venturing out into the world of remote work. While you may be primarily motivated by money, and may even be in a place of need, you still get to decide how this will go and what kind of work you want to do.

Taking the time to take inventory will help you choose the perfect path in this awesome adventure.

Virtual Assistants

One of the best ways to work from home is by providing virtual assistant (VA) services. VAs complete all sorts of tasks for bloggers, podcasters, real estate agents… really any business owner who needs an extra set of hands.

And, if you think about it, that’s most business owners! Outsourcing tasks is becoming more and more popular, in part because it ultimately saves business owners money and cuts down on some of the challenges of maintaining regular employees.

The role of a VA is generally to free a business owner up to do the things they enjoy in their businesses and or the high-level tasks that impact their bottom line. For a busy business owner who doesn’t have the time to deal with their inbox or social media accounts, a good VA is priceless!

And the services that VAs can offer is a pretty huge list – basically anything a business needs! Some common examples of VA tasks are editing blog posts, managing editorial calendars and social media promotions, graphic design, bookkeeping and email management.

You can check out this list of 150+ Services You Can Offer to get an idea of the ton of possibilities out there!

The services you could provide depend on your education, background, experience and skills – and everyone has some kind of marketable skill they bring to the table.

Or, if you want to cut out the middle man and work for yourself, on your terms, that’s totally doable too. Check out Gina’s Course, #FullyBookedVA. It will teach you everything you need to know about launching a prosperous VA business, whether it’s as a side hustle or you’re looking to go full-time.

Side note: If providing services as a VA sounds like a good fit, you can check out our VA Leads Community where we provide unique client leads!

Travel Professionals

Do you love to travel? How about a home-based career that pays well and offers travel perks? A career working from home in the travel industry might be for you!

When you think of the travel industry, the first career that comes to mind is probably a travel agent. But there are so many other professions within this industry, like travel writing, blogging, reservation agents, consultants, sales reps and more.

If this sounds appealing, start thinking about the types of tasks you like to complete, what niche you’d like to work in (luxury, budget, family, cruising, RVing, etc.), and whether you’d want to work as a freelancer, employee or business owner. Some positions will require prior experience or education, while others will provide on-the-job training.

Once you nail down the basics of what you’d like your at-home travel career to look like, you can begin to search for jobs, business opportunities and training to make your dream a reality. 

Social Media Managers

When social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter first came on the scene, companies were hesitant to spend marketing dollars on these channels – this is definitely no longer the case! If you love playing around on social media, there are are a ton of work from home opportunities to consider. 

While “social media manager” can technically fall under the heading of VA – lots of VAs provide this service and it’s a great way to break into this work – you could also brand yourself strictly as a social media manager. This title covers a lot of ground, from moderating communities, curating and scheduling content, running ad campaigns, audience outreach… There are a lot of facets to social media management.

Not to mention all the different platforms out there! If you’re particularly well-versed on one platform, you could even specialize, or narrow it down to two or three to focus on.

This is definitely an industry where it pays to be two – or even ten – steps ahead when it comes to changing trends, algorithms, etc. Once again, it’s worth it to hone your skills, and there are a ton of resources out there for doing so.

Do you love Pinterest, for example? Kristin has a whole course that teaches you how to become a Pinterest VA.

Like the other specialties, you can choose to work as a freelancer, employee or home-based business owner, whichever suits your needs and desires when it comes to creating income from home.

Finding Legit Work-From-Home Jobs

Even though there are more legitimate work-from-home jobs than ever before, there are still a large number of scammers lurking in the shadows, unfortunately. Technology has made it easy for scammers to promote their scammy scams while hiding behind a virtual curtain, and it’s why you MUST research and track your job search from start to finish.

I’ll admit – when I first started my remote job search, my efforts were far from organized. There was no rhyme or reason to how I was conducting my searches. I just wanted to get paid!

And scams? I didn’t know how to tell what was legit from what wasn’t, and it was overwhelming and discouraging at times. Because of my disorganized efforts, it took me a long time to land a remote gig – nine months to be exact.

And I don’t have to tell you – nine months is excruciatingly long when you need cash.

Over the years I’ve learned so much about the work-from-home industry, and I can usually spot a scam within minutes, sometimes even seconds simply from having put in the time and gaining the experience. While I’d love to be able to grab you by the hand and guide you through your job search, that’s just not possible.

So, this past year I came up with a practical way to lead people through their remote job search from start-to-finish. I’ve taken my 13 years of knowledge and experience and combined it into a package called the WFH Bundle.

With this 126-page bundle, you can track, organize and streamline your remote job search for maximum results. It also helps you pinpoint which occupation you’re best suited for by taking a deep-dive into an inventory of your personal skills.

But most importantly, this resource will help you spot scams quickly so that you don’t become a victim of one.

To help you start your work-at-home search off on the right foot, I’m offering readers of Horkey HandBook $5 off the WFH Bundle, making it the low price of $10. Use the promo code HORKEY5OFF at checkout to receive your discount on the WFH Bundle. 

With some focus and preparation, you can be on your way to earning income from home in no time. It’s not a question of if it will work – it is working for thousands and thousands of people. Head into this adventure armed with some knowledge and a way to streamline your efforts and it will work for you too!

Holly Reisem Hanna is the publisher and founder of The Work at Home Woman, which has been helping individuals find remote careers and businesses that feed their souls since 2009. Through her unconventional career path of holding over 30 jobs and obtaining two college degrees, she’s been able to figure out how to find a career path that you’re truly passionate about. Holly’s had the pleasure of sharing her expertise on sites like CNN, MSN Money, Huffington Post, Woman’s Day Magazine, as well as being recognized by Forbes as one of the “Top 100 Websites for Your Career.” Holly resides in Austin, Texas, with her husband and daughter and enjoys reading, traveling, and yoga

Gina Horkey

Gina Horkey


Gina Horkey is a married, millennial mama from Minnesota. Additionally, she’s the founder of Horkey HandBook and loves helping others find or become a kickass virtual assistant. Gina’s background includes making a living as a professional writer, an online business marketing consultant and a decade of experience in the financial services industry.

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