Working from home and making money online has been described as the next great American gold rush. As millions of people find themselves out of a job or underemployed, more and more of them are turning to the internet to supplement their income. If you're looking for ways to make a few bucks from the comfort of your own home then you've probably already seen a web site advertising fast cash with just a few clicks of your mouse.

I suggest you be wary of sites that make outlandish claims and promise riches with little or no work. Be especially careful around sites that require you to pay a fee before they reveal their secret money-making methods to you. It does not necessarily mean you're about to be ripped off but it should sound the alarm of a potential scam.

If you're looking for legitimate ways to make money from home on the internet here are 5 suggestions you can get started with right away:

1. Become a virtual assistant. As a virtual assistant you may be required to write up documents, prepare mailings and invoices, follow up with clients by email or phone, make travel arrangements, and more. There are lots of busy professionals and business owners who could use a VA to assist with daily tasks and they are willing to pay for your skills.

2. Open an eBay store. Most eBay sellers start out by auctioning off old stuff from around their house that they no longer want. But if you find a profitable niche you can go one step further. Find a supplier where you can buy goods cheap and sell them on the internet for a profit.

3. If you speak a second language you can make extra money translating documents. You can translate digital documents, hard copies, or a combination of the two.

4. Transcription services are always in demand. This is where you would receive an audio file or a cd containing a speech, seminar, or interview. Your job would be to listen to the audio and type it up into a readable format. You'll need to have a good ear and fast typing fingers to excel at this one.

5. Become a ghostwriter. There are lots of businesses and individuals that need content created for their web sites, blogs, newsletters, pamphlets, etc. If you have decent writing skills and can work on a deadline you can offer your writing services to them. Quality writers can make a nice living online.

Source by Michael Collins