As a stay at home mother, I can’t help but click on all those work at home ads. The one that caught my interest most recently was something like this:
“Work at Home Data Entry- Get rich working only 15 minutes a day!”
Sounds too good to be true doesn’t it? And yet I click, and read, and read again, wishing and hoping that the opportunity to work at home doing data entry is really there. The company that initially caught my eye was Data Entry Bank. However, there are numerous work at home data entry ads like this cropping up on the web, like type-at-home.com, mydatajob.com or homedatatypers.com, all of whom make strikingly similar pitches. Surrounded by pictures of sunny beaches and smiling, successful people in front of laptops, the page tells me that all I need to do is spend a few minutes a day typing ads for companies selling e-books and such. I’m treated to sample pay stubs that amount to thousands per week, and I’m told that every step will be explained for me. Suddenly data entry is starting to look like my dream job. I’m soon imagining a whole new wardrobe, that long vacation, a new home… but wait a minute. When I email the company to ask a question about how I might get a refund if I did sign up for their particular work at home data entry program, I get no reply. When I search on Google for Data Entry Bank, I find out that they haven’t been in business for very long. There is no telephone number, no address, no name, just a way to send money.
So, are all the work at home data entry jobs a scam? If I ever get enough money in my pocket to sign up for all these data entry programs and find out for myself, I’ll let you know. But I can’t do that right now, so I can’t honestly say. It’s folly to pay someone for a job, but not to pay for information- that’s why it costs money to go to college, or to buy a how-to manual. You’re paying for information you don’t already have. It’s up to you to determine whether the information or opportunity will really be as valuable as it appears. As I said before, I received no reply after emailing the data entry company that caught my eye, and I don’t feel like Data Entry Bank has enough reputation for me to give them my hard earned money. It’s almost always better to have money in your pocket than in someone else’s that you don’t really know, however honest they may appear.
A helpful tool of course is to do a search for the company with the word “scam”, for example, “data entry bank scam”, and see what people have to say. I found a forum post from one gal claiming to be making money with work at home data entry companies like this. There are also a few ads claiming to be review sites, that describe their experience with different work at home data entry opportunities. No one was making the huge profits advertised on the original company’s site, and a more than fifteen minutes a day was being put into it, but they all claimed to have at least made back the money they initially paid out to work for these data entry companies. And of course all of these were promoting the company themselves. So if I clicked on their link to the company, they would get a piece of the pie. This makes me wonder if they are making money using the program, or just by promoting the data entry program. Hard to say.
Many of these work at home data entry companies claim to offer a refund, but I don’t see much evidence that it’s an unconditional refund, which can lead to time consuming negotiations via email that never result in your money back. On a scam.com forum, one woman explains how she signed up with a work at home data entry company, and tried to get a refund after her computer froze while she was trying to use the data entry program. She said that she never received a reply or refund. With no telephone number, no Better Business Bureau reputation to insure and little contact with other members, you are putting yourself in a vulnerable position by signing up for a work at home data entry company. Fortunately, if you pay the company through Clickbank, you should be able to obtain a refund through Clickbank if the company doesn’t respond.
Of course this isn’t real data entry like you might do in an office; this is typing ads. Making money from typing ads is as old as print media, that is after all, the purpose of advertising. And typing ads for other people is nothing new either, especially on the web. When Google released their adwords campaign, (you know, all those little ads that appear alongside your search results, or on any number of web pages), typing ads became very big business.
When you click on one of those ads, the person who posted the ad pays a fee, probably a few cents, depending on the competition for that search term. If no one clicks on it, there’s no cost to anybody. But if you click and buy, someone’s just made a profit. If the person who entered that ad into Google’s advertising program is selling that item, business is booming. If he or she is only receiving a cut of the profit for someone else’s product, then you have a mutually advantageous business relationship going on. So this kind of data entry is really just glorified affiliate marketing using ads on Google, Yahoo, or where ever.
With these work at home data entry companies, they offer to do some of the work for you, like getting you affiliated with companies easily and training you to write ads. Although they advertise “free” places to post ads, I think most people make money through paid advertising, like using Google Adwords. So if you are genuinely interested in typing ads, you might be better off learning about affiliate marketing and building your own business, rather than paying a data entry company. Otherwise, you’ll be dependent on the company for your money.
Of course someone is happy to take your money to get you started in this too. Ebooks like Beating Adwords and Google Cash claim to teach you how to type Google ads to make money, for about $8 more than the cost of Data Entry Bank. But again, expect to pay for most of the advertising out of your own pocket. There are also a few free guides to get you involved in this. I think www.associateprograms.com gives the best explanation of this sort of thing.
If you are considering trying a work at home data entry job of any kind, do your research, ask questions, and take your time. I think it’s best to be ruled by the following: “there’s no such thing as a free lunch.” Making money takes time, thought and energy. So be prepared to pay in some way. If I ever get enough disposable income to throw in my lot with a data entry company, I’ll sign up and let you all know how it goes!