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Working online is becoming an increasingly popular option that people consider when looking at a career change. Internet jobs certainly exist and gone are the days when an online career simply meant getting paid to answer emails, stuffing envelopes and things of that nature that most of us wisely ignored. These days, you can work online and make a good income. Rather than discussing the ways that you can legitimately earn money online - and there are plenty of good Internet resources that already do that - I think it would be more valuable to discuss the realities of working online based on what I've seen and learned during my 2 years of experience working on the Internet. There are way too many get rich quick schemes on the Internet and like the old adage says, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Here are my tips for working online: 1. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Yes, I just mentioned it above but it's worth mentioning again. If you see Internet ads or emails claiming you can make thousands of dollars per day working from home, don't get your hopes up. If it was that easy to make money working online, everyone would be doing it. 2. Working online is an increasingly competitive option. Whether it's selling another person's product online or selling your own product online, it is becoming harder to get customers' attention on the Net. You can certainly have an online career selling physical or Internet-based products but your best bet is to find a niche and fill it. With thousands of new websites popping up daily, the competition is increasing every day. 3. Working online can be expensive. In order to sell products, you obviously need customers. To find customers on the Internet, you often need to pay to find them by bidding on search engine keywords to attract qualified and targeted buyers. Keywords are becoming more expensive to bid on and it is becoming more difficult to be profitable in certain markets. Too many so-called Internet gurus make it sound so easy and cheap to earn money online. That's because they know many of the tricks of the trade such as getting many people to promote their products for them and having these people cover all the costs of finding paying customers. Often it seems that the people who are making the most money on the Internet are the people who charge you money to show you how to make money on the Internet. 4. Building a career online takes time and won't necessarily happen overnight.

If you expect that you can quit a good paying job on Friday and start earning a similar amount of money working online the following Monday, you will be sadly disappointed. Remember the childhood story of the tortoise and the hare? The hare is faster than the tortoise but the tortoise is slow but steady and wins the race as a result. Earning money on the Internet is usually the same way these days: you win the race by being slow but steady. Occasionally you might hit the jackpot quickly but more often than not, online success takes time (and effort). If you are going to pursue an online career, go into it with both eyes open. Don't buy into the get rich schemes because most if not all of them are scams. Working online can certainly be a lucrative option but try to do as much research as possible before diving into the pool headfirst and finding out too late that there is no water. Look for things that people will be willing to pay for in the long term. Today's fad might be forgotten tomorrow.

Carl Mueller is an Internet entrepreneur and professional recruiter who wants to help you find your dream career. Visit Carl's website to separate yourself from other job searchers: Sign up for The Effective Career Planner, CarlÂ’s free 5-day course: Ezine editors/Webmasters: Please feel free to reprint this article in its entirety in your ezine or on your website. Please donÂ’t change any of the content and please ensure that you include the above bio that shows my website URL. If you would like me to address any specific career topics in future articles, please let me know.

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