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How To Make Money From Your Phone: 15 Ways to Monetize Your Screen Time

16 min read

Like most people nowadays, you’re probably inseparable from your smartphone. This is because these devices empower us to do pretty much anything and keep us entertained continuously. From just a small device, you can send messages globally, check the weather, look up information, make payments, and the list goes on. And guess what? They still function as traditional telephones too!

But what if we told you that you can also make money from your phone? While it does require some effort, there are several great ways to make real money while using your phone. We promise you won’t see any shady options and “free money” advice here—only the best tips on how to make legit money from your phone.

Let’s get started.

How to sell online
Tips from e-commerce experts for small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs.
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Participate in Consumer Surveys and Market Research

Many companies are willing to pay for consumer opinions and feedback. Numerous websites and apps have surveys where you can share your thoughts on various products, services, and brands. For example, apps like Branded Surveys or InboxDollars pay users to complete market testing surveys.

The process is pretty straightforward. Companies seek feedback from regular consumers on their potential products or services. These companies enlist the help of survey companies to collect this information. Then, consumers like you fill out surveys, answer questions or provide feedback.

Participants can get paid in cash, gift cards, PayPal vouchers, or other bonuses. This won’t help you get rich, but it can be an excellent way to earn some extra cash on the side.

An example of a product testing survey (Source: SurveyMonkey)

Play Games

There are certain apps that actually pay users to play games online. Apps like Mistplay offer various game types where players can collect in-game rewards. Those rewards can then be exchanged for real-world prizes. Again, this is not a viable option to replace your regular income. But it can be a fun way to make extra cash during your downtime.

Take Part in User Testing

Similar to taking online surveys, many companies will also pay users to test out their websites or services online. The UserTesting app is an example of a company that does this. UserTesting connects its users with services that suit their personal preferences. Users can then test out the products or services and earn rewards along the way.

The UserTesting app

Use Cashback Apps While Shopping

Yes, it is possible to get paid to shop online. Some apps reward users for various purchases like gas, clothes, and groceries. Rakuten is one of the most well-known cashback apps out there, but there are dozens of others.

Of course, if you end up shopping just for the prospect of earning rewards, you won’t actually make any money. But signing up for one of these apps to supplement your shopping (that you would have done anyway) is a smart way to earn rewards.

Sell Old Items

Everybody has a few old and unused items sitting in storage somewhere. Just because you have no use for it doesn’t mean somebody else can’t use it.

Your phone makes it easier than ever to sell old items quickly and conveniently. Dozens of apps facilitate the sale of old and unused items. eBay is the original platform in this category and is still a great option today.

eBay is a popular place to sell used and vintage items

Other platforms like Nextdoor and Facebook Marketplace are good for finding local buyers to save on shipping. Several apps specialize in buying and selling certain niche items. Poshmark, for example, is an app that allows people to sell used designer clothes and decor items.

Launch an Online Store

For entrepreneurs who aren’t satisfied simply with selling their old items, there is an option to open an online store.

There are many online marketplaces where you can sell to customers across the globe. Amazon is, of course, America’s largest ecommerce marketplace. But other platforms, like eBay, Etsy, and Walmart Marketplace, are also viable. You can even choose to sell on multiple marketplaces if you want.

If you don’t want to share your profits with marketplaces (understandable!), then you can create a standalone ecommerce website. Yes, using just your phone!

With Ecwid by Lightspeed, you can do that in less than an hour, no design or coding skills needed. Setting up and managing your own online store is a piece of cake with the Ecwid Mobile app. You can choose from 40+ design templates, which makes setting up an online store a breeze.

Using a template makes creating an online store easy even with your phone

Plus, Ecwid doesn’t charge transaction fees and has a Free plan, which is perfect for beginners.

Setting up an online store involves as much or as little work as you want. If you choose the right products and strategy, it can be a steady source of income. If you are wondering how to make money from home on your phone—try selling from an online store.

Sell Print-on-Demand Items

By leveraging print-on-demand services, entrepreneurs and creatives can easily set up online stores and sell unique, personalized merchandise without an upfront investment or storage space.

Print-on-demand is an order fulfillment method where items are printed as soon as an order is made. This eliminates the need for a large inventory and allows for greater flexibility in product offerings.

There are several reputable print-on-demand companies and sites available, such as Printful. These platforms offer various printing options and products, including apparel, homeware, accessories, and more.

With Printful, you can quickly start selling all kinds of custom-printed and embroidered products

Ecwid by Lightspeed is integrated with several print-on-demand services, including Printful. So, you can create your store, connect it to a print-on-demand service of your choice, and start selling items with your own design in no time.

Open a Dropshipping Store

Dropshipping is becoming increasingly popular, allowing people to sell online without ever dealing with stock. The store owner purchases the products from a third-party supplier, who then fulfills the orders directly to the customer.

Dropshipping eliminates the need for upfront inventory investment and allows for greater flexibility in product selection and pricing. You can focus on marketing and growing your online store while leaving the fulfillment and logistics to the suppliers.

All you need is an online store, which you can quickly create on mobile with Ecwid by Lightspeed. It is also integrated with a bunch of dropshipping services like Alibaba, Wholesale2B, and more, which allows you to launch your dropshipping business with ease.

Sell Handmade Products

If you have a DIY or crafting hobby, why not make money from it? You can sell handmade products on various online platforms and marketplaces for artisans and crafters. One well-known platform is Etsy, which specializes in handmade and vintage goods.

There are other online marketplaces like Amazon Handmade or Facebook Marketplace, where artisans can apply to sell their handcrafted products to millions of customers worldwide.

A personal website is an additional channel for reaching out to potential customers. The more exposure you have, the better. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly but beautiful and efficient store, check out Ecwid by Lightspeed.

The Pistils online store was created with Ecwid by Lightspeed

You can easily set up a free site with Ecwid’s Instant Site and use a Free plan that allows you to sell a limited number of products. As we mentioned, you don’t need a desktop—you can set up and manage your online store on your phone using the Ecwid Mobile app.

Use Gig Apps

When thinking about how to make money from your phone, many people probably immediately picture apps like Uber or Lyft. These apps are some of the most popular ways to make money on your phone. Rideshares, deliveries, and other services can all be arranged from a simple app on your phone. apps. It’s definitely possible to earn a living—using nothing but your phone (and, usually, your car).

The money you make from these types of apps usually depends on the app you choose and how much work you put in. Some Uber drivers can make a full-time, liveable wage on the app. For others, these gig apps are a reliable source of income on the side. Either way, gig apps are one of the most reliable methods for how to make money from your phone.

If you don’t have a car, check out gig apps for freelancers, like Fiverr. This service allows freelancers to showcase their expertise in various areas, such as graphic design, writing, programming, marketing, and more. Fiverr provides a wide range of categories and a large user base, making it a viable option for freelancers looking for side gigs or full-time freelancing opportunities.

An example of a freelancer profile on Fiverr

Consider Investment Apps

Using gig apps or participating in surveys is mostly focused on small cash sums. If you want to earn a larger amount of money, you can download an investment app on your phone.

Earning money through investing may not be as fast as some of the other methods. Not to mention that you need to invest some time first to educate yourself on the subject. But, if you do it right, the payoff is much greater. Apps like Acorns make investing convenient and offer the potential for big-time rewards.

Sell Your Data

For some people, the thought of sharing their data represents a major invasion of privacy. But for others, selling their data is a potentially lucrative opportunity. Just like online surveys and user testing, many marketing researchers are happy to pay for your user data. This gives researchers valuable insight into consumer habits and preferences. For you, it can be a good way to earn extra cash without needing to do any labor at all.

Make and Sell Photos

There has been a lot of discussion about how iPhones and Androids have transformed everyone into amateur photographers. The camera quality on modern smartphones is really impressive. And, if you have the time to learn a few photography basics, you can use that technology to earn money.

You can create a free site with Ecwid to use as your portfolio as Exposure Photography did

If you want to start a photography business, you will probably need more advanced equipment than just your phone. But smartphone photographers can earn money by snapping quality pictures and selling them to stock photo companies. If you’re successful, you can earn a nice amount of money through stock photo royalties.

Dive into Content Creation

With the rise of social media platforms, becoming a content creator or influencer can be a lucrative way to earn money using your phone. Whether you have a knack for photography, video editing, or creating engaging content, there are numerous opportunities to monetize your skills.

By building a solid online presence and growing a dedicated following, you can collaborate with brands, promote products or services, and earn income through sponsored posts, brand partnerships, and affiliate marketing.

Many influencer marketing platforms connect brands that need user-generated content with content creators, making searching for potential collaborations much easier for creators. Check out platforms like Insense, Collabstr, or Heepsy.

Provide SMM Services

If you’re savvy with social media, you can use your phone to earn a full-time salary by working as a social media manager. You can be either a full-time or part-time employee with a real, liveable wage.

Social media marketing has become a marketing staple for nearly every business today. Social media is so crucial that most brands hire a dedicated social media manager to run their official accounts.

If you’re comfortable navigating all the various social media channels, this could be a great job for you. And the only tool you need for success is your smartphone.


Making money with your phone is a great way to maximize the power of your device. While some methods may require more time and effort than others, you’ll be able to find the perfect fit for your lifestyle. Whether making a few hundred extra bucks or building a business from scratch, you can do it all on your phone if you’re willing to do the work.

From selling your services as an influencer to becoming part of a gig economy, there are so many opportunities out there that only require you to have a smartphone by your side. So why not take action today and see how your phone can help you earn some pretty impressive rewards?

If you’re looking for more information on this topic, make sure to check out our blog, where we talk about ecommerce tips and tricks and other related topics.

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About the author

Max has been working in the ecommerce industry for the last six years helping brands to establish and level-up content marketing and SEO. Despite that, he has experience with entrepreneurship. He is a fiction writer in his free time.

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So simple to use – even my most technophobic clients can manage. Easy to install, quick to set up. Light years ahead of other shop plugins.
I’m so impressed I’ve recommended it to my website clients and am now using it for my own store along with four others for which I webmaster. Beautiful coding, excellent top-notch support, great documentation, fantastic how-to videos. Thank you so much Ecwid, you rock!
I’ve used Ecwid and I love the platform itself. Everything is so simplified it’s insane. I love how you have different options to choose shipping carriers, to be able to put in so many different variants. It’s a pretty open e-commerce gateway.
Easy to use, affordable (and a free option if starting off). Looks professional, many templates to select from. The App is my favorite feature as I can manage my store right from my phone. Highly recommended 👌👍
I like that Ecwid was easy to start and to use. Even for a person like me, without any technical background. Very well written help articles. And the support team is the best for my opinion.
For everything it has to offer, ECWID is incredibly easy to set up. Highly recommend! I did a lot of research and tried about 3 other competitors. Just try ECWID and you'll be online in no time.

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