Here we go. I said I was going to try offering work at home job ideas each week, and here I am. I’ll be covering not only various job ideas, but some of the common signs of scams for a particular idea. And of course most work at home jobs can also be done as home businesses if you want to find your own clients or customers.

Data Entry

Data entry is one of the most commonly searched for work at home positions, at least if the number of people I get asking about it is any indicator. Trouble is, it’s also one of the most scam-ridden.

Qualifications/Training Needed?

Your typical legitimate data entry position will be much concerned with how quickly and accurately you can enter data. A required typing speed of 40-55 words per minute is not unusual, and they may have expectations on how fast you can key data too.

Freelance positions can also be found. You can seek data entry jobs with local companies or check out freelance websites. In these cases you may not be formally tested, but you’ll have to prove your skills if you want to keep getting clients and improving your income.

Job Duties

Type in data from documents. These may be scanned documents, and are sometimes challenging to read. You are paid on production, but may be required to commit to a schedule or a certain number of hours weekly.

Equipment Needed

Computer with high speed internet is often required.

Where to Search for Jobs

Data entry job listings at Home with the Kids
Craigslist (beware of many, many scams!)
Home Job Stop
Elance
oDesk (edit: now Upwork)
Home Job Stop
Guru
Hire My Mom

Related Scams

As one of the more popular options for people just starting to research their work at home options, scams related to data entry abound. The skills needed for data entry are basic enough that many people feel they can handle it. Add in the uncertainty about what exactly data entry involves, and people get fooled easily.

The most common scam right now is probably telling you that filling out forms on Google is data entry. They’re really selling a pay per click affiliate marketing plan. That in itself is legitimate, but the way they present the information is extremely deceptive, as it’s not a job and pay per click marketing is very hard to learn for most people.

Not to mention that you may lose a lot of money while you try it. Better to go with legitimate sources if you want to learn any sort of affiliate marketing, such as The Super Affiliate Handbook or Perry Marshall’s Guide to Google AdWords. You’ll still most likely lose money on some campaigns, but at least these sources are upfront about this being a business, not a job.

The other version is related to the old envelope stuffing scheme. You pay for instructions on how to scam other people into sending you money to learn how to do the same thing.