Making Money Using Blockchain: Freelancing, Mining, Trading, and More!

How can I make money with blockchains? I’m not a big company…

millennial blockchainWe are here to show you a few ways to make money with blockchain. You’ve heard about it. You know big corporations are getting in on the next technological wave. But, how in the world are you supposed to jump in on your own?

For most people, one of the biggest barriers in getting into cryptocurrency is a lack of investment funds. For others, they’ve invested what they have, but understand the profundity of blockchain technology, and want to own more of a share.

Now, thanks to the growing demand, a burgeoning number of blockchain startups and recent developments in the space, you can work for cryptocurrency on the blockchain. Plus, there are also other opportunities, like mining or trading cryptocurrencies too. Even selling membership access if a possibility.

While Millennials are certainly moving towards “alternative career paths” more often than their Generation X or Baby Boomer counterparts, there are countless ways for absolutely anyone to capitalize on the new wave of oncoming technology. Here, you’ll find an awesome starting point to making money and freelancing with blockchain technology.

Let’s start off with Freelance work… 

How can I earn Bitcoin and Ether for Freelance Work?

Freelance Market Explosion

digital workOne in three Americans – about 42 million – are independent workers, according to The Freelancer’s Union. By 2020, many industry data researchers predict freelancers will make up half of the labor force. Internationally, almost 50 percent of managers in the UK and Germany are allowed to work remotely, with an estimated 800 percent increase in virtual workers (The Nemertes Research Group).

In addition to full-time freelancers, more people have been looking to branch out for extra income sources in what’s been termed – even by publications like Forbes – as “side hustles.”

The combination of these factors and the endless opportunities unfolding as new code is being written to expand opportunities on the blockchain, is making for a new frontier in the ability to work from anywhere in the world and earn cryptocurrency.

Problems with Fiat & Current Job Sites

Freelance job sites are ripe for disruption as the list of challenges in getting work online, and getting paid in a timely manner for that work, is long:

  • High Fees: Freelancer platforms on the current market charge up to 20 percent of the job rate. That doesn’t even include the extra three percent they charge to withdraw your own money! If you are working from home, this is a huge bite out of your hard-earned money.
  • Influence of Central Authority: The platforms are centralized and come with all of the issues that include:
    • A lack of transparency into their algorithms and processes
    • They collect and own all of your data and profit from it
    • Questionable security
    • And so much more. Learn more about centralization vs. decentralization here.
  • Fake Reviews: There have been many cases of clients and freelancers trying to hack or cheat the system by creating fake reviews and multiple accounts. This highlights the main trust issue that non-blockchain projects face and make it difficult to know if you are dealing with a reliable entity.
  • Slow Payment Times: Not only do you get hit with fees, but fiat payments can take days or even weeks to clear through banks and make it into your account. Bitcoin and Ether payments can happen within minutes, and other cryptos are even faster.

In addition to these problems in the current systems, none of these sites offer freelancers the chance to earn in cryptocurrency. The only site that accepts bitcoin is Fiverr. However, the company only accepts it from clients, and they do not allow payments to freelancers in BTC… Oh, and they charge 20 percent for that too.

Freelance Marketplaces for Earning Crypto

Without further adieu, here are the current platforms available to start earning in crypto now:

PLATFORMS FOR EARNING IN BITCOIN

Cryptogrind

This site matches employers with freelancers, provides escrow addresses to hold payment until job completion, and acts as third-key mediator in the case of a dispute. The site was founded in 2015, so it has quite a good array of jobs with work in legal, development, design, music, video, writing – and even has a section called “Fun or bizarre.”

Cryptogrind Layout

Unique Selling Point: The site has gained a good reputation in the community for its tight security that includes cold wallets only (private keys are never transmitted over the web) and touts itself as the only platform using multi-sig escrow accounts for crypto storage.

Earn in: Bitcoin, USD

Fee: Free to post jobs and submit proposals – 4% (2% client / 2% freelancer) on all completed escrow transactions. You can gain 2% of escrow fees back by referring an employer. If your referred employer signs up, you earn 2% of their escrows for life

/r/Jobs4Bitcoins

The subreddit Jobs4Bitcoins features both “for hire” and “hiring” posts. A few posts go up per day, ranging from alpha-tester roundups to college students looking to hire out a research paper.

jobs for bitcoin
R/Jobs4Bitcoin Page

Unique Selling Point: There is a lot of different variety here and the reddit community is incredibly active in the blockchain space and helpful if you have questions.

BUYER BEWARE: Because the posts are live on Reddit, there is no built-in escrow service for employers’ funds to be held for freelancers. If you decide to go this route, you will want to employ a third-party escrow service like EscrowCoin or BTCrow before beginning any work. (Really technical and highly experienced employer/freelancer pairs could avoid third party fees altogether by using a 2-of-2 multi-signature address between themselves to hold the funds.)

Earn in: Bitcoin

Fee: No fee unluess you employ a third party escrow service.

XBT Freelancer

Employers currently posting at XBT include blockchain giants like ShapeShift and Coinbase along with a host of other blogging, development, marketing, and search engine optimization jobs. The site has also been around a few years and has a good history in the community.

XBT Freelancer
XBT Freelancer Layout

Unique Selling Point: The service encourages freelancers to establish milestones of set prices with employers. This way, if a job is long and complex, freelancers can get paid as they complete each milestone, and the employer can give consistent feedback that the work is satisfactory. The site also offers a how-to guide and a lot of great general information about bitcoin and freelancing.

Earn in: Bitcoin

Fee: There is no fee to list a job, submit proposals or accept a job. There is a 0.0005 XBT (USD 60 cents) miner fee to each bitcoin withdrawal to support the bitcoin network. Freelancers pay 10% on the total amount of milestones performed in a project.

Coinality

*DEVELOPERS ONLY*

This platform offers an exclusive, invite-only job board for pre-screened developers. If you want to apply to be a programmer, you are required to complete competency exams in coding and are monitored for success throughout your time working for various employers there.

Unique Selling Point: For qualified developers, the jobs are high paying, the process is highly professional, and it is free as a freelancer.

Earn in: Bitcoin, USD

Fee: Client pays 10%

bitcoin

PLATFORMS FOR EARNING IN ETHER

Ethlance
ethlance
Ethlance Platform

Earning in ether is easy on Ethlance. Like Cryptogrind, the site has a nice, wide variety of jobs available and because it is the only marketplace offering ether, it is quite popular with loads of listings.

Unique Selling Point: This is the first (and only at the moment) freelance marketplace actually built on the blockchain. While the others are regular websites, Ethlance offers all the benefits that come with decentralization. This platform has a great series of tutorials on YouTube and how-to’s on the site. Their code is also completely open source.

Earn in: Ether

Fee: The site does not take a fee for anything. You will only pay the gas fees to submit the transaction on the Ethereum network (usually under $1 depending on network traffic). Because there is no fee, there is no dispute resolution offered by Ethlance so make sure to get paid with milestones for work while building initial relationships with clients.

New & Upcoming Platforms

As mentioned, Ethlance is currently the only freelance marketplace actually built on the blockchain. This is changing very fast as the market is realizing the demand and opportunity to create decentralized marketplace to list and bid for work and get paid in cryptocurrency.

There are two upcoming projects which will combine all of the best from above and improve on the model. In addition to low fees and the benefits of decentralization, these platforms go one step further, providing connections to fiat, multiple cryptocurrencies support and new solutions for dispute resolution.

eDev.one

This will be build on the OpenLedger blockchain and will have its own native currency JOYY!. Contracts will be paid in USD or crypto, but will appreciate JOYY! as a freelancer grows in reputation. You can read more about the model here.

Earn in: USD, BTC, ETH, BTS (+ any crypto available on OpenLedger)

Fee: Up to 12.5% – 2.5% client, up to 10% for the freelancer depending on milestones. That being said, the platform will offer full admin services and support including dispute resolution.

RELEASE: Q4 of 2017

Blocklancer

This platform will be a distributed autonomous job market, or DAJ, built on the Ethereum blockchain. The platform aims to be a completely self-regulatory platform for finding jobs and completing projects. Blocklancer has an interesting solution for dispute settlements that are democratically resolved in token holder tribunals. You can read more about the model here.

Earn in: Multiple Cryptocurrencies

Fee: 3%

RELEASE: The alpha version was released in October 2017. The final version will be online Q1 of 2018.

Mining

Mining cryptocurrency is considered the granddaddy of making bank on blockchain. Here’s a quick rundown of how the technology works. Multiple transactions make up a block. Miners verify blocks through a process. They apply a mathematical formula to each block, turning it into somethingmake money blockchain called a “hash.” Essentially, a hash is an alphanumeric sequence. The hash is then stored at the end of the blockchain. When each block’s hash is created, it uses the previous block’s hash. More or less, this is the digital version of a wax seal.

So, once a block has been “sealed off,” a flurry of activity happens. The first miner to produce the hash receives a reward. This, of course, varies cryptocurrency-to-cryptocurrency. Currently, Bitcoin’s reward is 12 bitcoins. As more of the cryptocurrency is mined, the rewards is halved. The process itself is pretty straightforward. What’s not straightforward, though, is actually making it happen.

When Bitcoin first arrived on the market, there were few people mining the digital currency. As it gained popularity, however, more people saw its potential. With that, a massive influx of miners arrived on the market. For years, merely using your graphics card or CPU was more than enough to mine.

Since so many people have computers strong enough to mine, it’s far more difficult to make it a lucrative endeavor. Instead, mining pools have popped up. Mining pools are just groups of people working together to mine—it ups the computing power and probability that you’ll complete a hash. If the pool wins, everyone in the pool is distributed a portion of that winning. That’s not to say, though, that mining smaller Altcoins on your own isn’t a possibility. In fact, other coins such as Monero and Litecoin are awesome choices if you’re looking to get into the mining game.

Trading

Cryptocurrencies reside on exchanges, just like fiat money. However, they have much more in common with stocks. Because cryptocurrency markets are so volatile, they can feel like more of a risk than they’re worth. With bitcoin fluctuating about $1,000 in a month, it’s no surprise you may be nervous.

make money blockchainTrading crypto, though, is much closer to penny stock trading. Penny stocks fluctuate like crazy. But, to make money with them you just need to be aware of trends and do your research. Know the specific risks associated with trading.

A “pump-and-dump” is a common scam. Essentially, someone buys up a ton of crypto and the hypes it up. This inflates the price. As it reaches its peak, that person sells all of his holdings and the price plummets. Keeping an eye out for these types of scams is necessary to keep your crypto portfolio safe.

There are literally thousands of cryptocurrencies on the market. For the most part, they’re created solely for a profit, only to be sent to the graveyard of cryptocurrencies past. So, if you’re up on your crypto news, you can get in at the bottom floor of these new coins and sell them before they fizzle out.

On the flip side, if you choose to hold on to certain cryptocurrencies, you are considered a hodler. While it may seem like a great idea, as a general rule of thumb, holding onto cryptocurrencies is not wise. The exception, of course, is bitcoin and maybe ether—Ethereum’s altcoin.

Do your research. Read up on the market. Trading crypto is crazy fun, regardless of if you make money. Jump in feet first, or just dabble. Either way, though, it’s definitely a lucrative way to make money on blockchain.

Sell Membership Access

Remember when being a YouTuber was actually profitable? Ad sharing allowed you to make a profit on the streaming site. When it was taken away, content creators were left in a rut. Since then, YouTube has released something called YouTube Red. People pay a monthly fee to watch videos without ads. Creators only receive a portion of the fee a YouTube subscriber paid, based on the amount of minutes watched. Naturally, this method significantly reduces income.

YouTube is not the only platform to introduce new revenue sharing channels, skewed away from the creators. If you make awesome content, be it videos, blog posts, digital art, music, or anything else, you can capitalize on blockchain freelancingblockchain. Rather than relying on a platform that will take the vast majority of the income, set up a digital wallet.

Charge people for viewing your blog. Set a price for listening to a song. Require a monthly subscription to a streaming site. The possibilities are literally endless. Just put on your brainstorming cap, and you’ll be bringing in extra cash in no time–all while freelancing with blockchain.

Perhaps you have no interest in charging people to view or experience your work. Many museums and galleries have a donation bin in the space. In the same breath, you can easily add your wallet address, so people can tip you. It’s a much less in-your-face approach, but more often than not, it’ll produce less income than straight-up charging members for a subscription.

The Future of Freelancing on the Blockchain

freelancingThe models are different but one things is consistent – the freelance marketplace is growing rapidly. For entrepreneurs looking to build startups on the blockchain, companies looking to find reliable, qualified freelancers and freelancers looking for a fair and transparent platform with quick payments and low fees, the boom of cryptocurrencies and the blockchain are the new holy grail in freelance work exchange.

If you have any experience you would like to share about freelancing for crypto, questions or know of any other freelances marketplaces on or off blockchain that offer payments in cryptocurrency, we’d love to hear from you! Contact us!

Jessica & Becca contributed to the content of the guide.