Considering one of those sketchy online envelope stuffing jobs? If you are: reconsider. In this article, we provide you with legit alternatives.
Are Envelope Stuffing Jobs Legit?
Working from home seems like the ultimate dream, but at the same time, there are a lot of scams out there. And while obvious scams are, well… obvious… there are many more that are somewhat ambiguous.
Chances are, you’ve already seen ads online (or even in your local newspaper) promising thousands of dollars a week via stuffing envelopes. Some even include a price tag on each envelope; putting dollar signs in your eyes like a cartoon character.
But just how legitimate are these envelope stuffing jobs?
What Are Envelope Stuffing Jobs?
Whenever you need to assess whether or not something is a scam, it helps to understand what exactly they’re claiming to be and/or offer.
Envelope stuffing jobs are exactly what they sound like. Insert, meet envelope, meet address, meet stamp, meet post box.
Seems simple, right?
Well, not really. You need the envelopes, the addresses, the stamps, and the insert (or inserts) of course. Presumably, that’s what the company will be sending you in exchange for that sign-up feed.
Are Envelope Stuffing Jobs Legit?
That sign-up fee, which can be anywhere from $20 to $100 (sometimes even more!), is your first red flag. Very few legitimate jobs require you to pay upfront for anything, including training. At the very worst, you might be asked to pay an administration fee to have your application processed. And even then, we recommend erring on the side of caution.
But let’s say you cough up the sign-up fee. A few weeks go by and the starter kit you’ve just purchased finally arrives.
Only, it’s a lot smaller than expected. A single envelope – not a batch of them – with a box of inserts and a couple sheets of postage stamps.
You open it up and find a single pamphlet. And it’s an advertisement for envelope stuffing jobs.
The idea is that you’re meant to copy that pamphlet and send it out – at your own expense – to recruit more envelope stuffers. If you’re lucky, a few people will take the bait and you’ll get paid a small commission from their sign-up fees.
If that sounds like a pyramid scheme to you, that’s because it is.
What To Do Instead
Short answer: yes, envelope stuffing jobs are most definitely a scam.
According to the US Postal Service, it’s one of the two most common work-from-home scams. In fact, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has an alert on their website dedicated solely to encouraging people to avoid envelope stuffing jobs like the plague.
So what to do instead?
Luckily, there are plenty of legitimate opportunities to earn money from home. Take a look at some of our best picks!
Blogging is one of the best ways to go about setting up a passive income for yourself. Yes, you do need to pay for web hosting upfront, but if you use BlueHost, it will only cost you $2.95/month. You can then start posting content and use affiliate marketing to attract a passive income. GiddyUp will help you find affiliate partners.
You can even couple that with your own online store using Shopify (though that will cost $29/month). And you won’t have to worry about manufacturing your own products if you use the dropshipping model and AliExpress to find reliable retailers.
Video and Audio Transcription
Transcription work is becoming increasingly popular. There’s not much to it – you sit listening to an audio or video file and type out everything that’s said.
Of course, you’ll want to have a fast typing speed and be able to listen attentively. But you can earn as much as $20/audio hour as a beginner, and from $50 upwards once you have experience. If you have a medical or legal background, even better!
Accutran Global is a great place to get started – you can make as much as $18/hour (about $72/audio hour) if you pass their application exam. GMR Transcription is another beginner-friendly platform to consider, with pay rates of $42 to $75/audio hour.
Freelance writing is one of the best work-from-home jobs for those with a flair for words (and the ability to do a lot of research!).
Freelance writing careers will really benefit from doing online courses like the ones offered by Writing Revolt. You can get started with the basics and work your way up.
Take Surveys and Watch Videos
Taking surveys and watching videos may sound like you’re just goofing off, but if you use the right platforms, you’ll actually be helping companies conduct market research.
However, you’ll never make a full-time living doing so. These types of jobs are filler tasks, meaning you can get paid to do them in your spare time. It’s a nice way to keep yourself entertained while earning a $1,000+ extra each year.
If you play your cards right by joining a few different platforms at the same time, you can leverage that into a rather respectable $7,000/year.
Survey Junkie and Swagbucks are the first two you should be looking into. Vindale Research and InboxDollars are the best ones to add to that. Just bear in mind that the surveys can be repetitive, and there aren’t always a lot of them available at any given time.
To wrap things up, it’s worth mentioning that you can occasionally find legitimate work stuffing envelopes. But those are going to be small, once-off tasks that require you to travel to and sit in the company’s office. And they don’t pay well.
In this case, it’s much better to err on the side of caution by treating all envelope stuffing jobs you find – either online or in your postbox – as a scam. Because almost every time, it most definitely will be a scam!
Instead, put your time and resources into pursuing one of the truly legitimate work-from-home opportunities we’ve listed as an alternative. That way, you’re guaranteed to make actual money rather than getting ripped off.