How to Make Money with Your Smartphone


With the explosion of the smartphone, its apps, and the gig economy, there are now more ways than ever to make money with your smartphone. From taking surveys and shopping online, to selling your services and old stuff, there are hundreds of ways to earn money with your device.

24 Ways to Make Money With Your Smartphone

Swagbucks is one of my faves! With Swagbucks, you earn points called SB, which can be redeemed for gift cards, coupons, and sweepstake entries. The platform can be accessed on your laptop or via the smartphone app for iPhone and Android operating systems. You can earn SB by watching videos, answering questions, completing offers, and even surfing the web using their toolbar. Refer your friends, and you’ll earn even more SB. Your SB points can be traded in for gift cards from Amazon, Target, Starbucks, PayPal, and Walmart. You also get a $5.00 sign up bonus when you register, sweet!

Want more info on Swagbucks? You can check out our full review here.

CheckPoints allows you to make money by scanning barcodes, taking quizzes, watching videos, searching the web, and completing offers. Trade points in for gift cards from Amazon, Target, and Walmart or earn entries for giveaways. CheckPoints has been featured on Mashable and is both Android and iPhone compatible.

Dabbl is a smartphone app that rewards people for taking surveys, giving opinions on various topics, watching videos, and completing offers and tasks. Each task will pay out a certain number of points. You can also earn 2,000 points for each friend that you refer to the app (once they earn 1,000 points). Every 5,000 points equals $5 in gift card value. Points can be traded in for gift cards from Amazon, Starbucks, Best Buy, Lowes, Walmart, and more.

DoorDash is a smartphone app that connects Dashers (delivery drivers) to individuals who need items delivered to their homes. Fill out the online application, wait for your background check to clear, and, once accepted, start taking assignments via the app. With DoorDash, you can use your vehicle, scooter, motorcycle, or bike, and in particular locales, you can even walk to make deliveries. Dashers are paid weekly via direct deposit.

Related Content: My Honest Review of Being a DoorDash Delivery Driver

With this smartphone app, you connect your credit card to their secure platform. For every dollar that you spend at a participating retailer, you’ll earn a varying (usually 2-10%) cashback amount. Because transactions are automatically tracked via your card, this opportunity is entirely passive. If you decide to refer friends and family to the platform, you can earn $5 for each person that signs up with your referral link (they have to connect their credit card). Money is available for withdrawal via your bank account, PayPal, or Venmo.

I love this app — because it is totally passive earning! With Drop, you earn points for shopping at individual stores. All you have to do is connect your credit card to their secure (256-bit encryption) smartphone application, and each time you purchase at a participating retailer, you’ll earn points. One thousand points equals $1, and when you earn enough points, they can be traded in for gift cards from stores like Starbucks, iTunes, Amazon, and many more. You can also invite friends to join with your personalized referral code. For each friend who signs up with your referral code — you’ll earn 1,000 points. Drop is available in the US and Canada and for both Andriod and iPhone users.

Easy Shift is a micro-task application where you can earn money by completing shifts. Shifts usually entail checking prices, seeing if a product is in stock, or taking photos of a store display. Once you have completed the shift, payment will be made through PayPal within 48 hours of submission. Shifts pay anywhere from $2.00 to $20.00 per task. This app is currently only available for iPhone users.

Fetch Rewards is a smartphone app that rewards individuals for scanning their grocery receipts. For each receipt you that you upload to the app, you’ll earn a certain amount of points. You can also connect your email and Amazon accounts to earn points for your online grocery purchases. The last way you can earn points with Fetch Rewards is by referring your friends to the app. For each friend that you refer (and that scans a qualifying receipt), you’ll earn 2,000 points! Points can be used for magazines, sweepstake entries, charities, or a wide array of gift cards.

Field Agent allows you to make money by completing various micro-tasks, from checking shelf availability to checking demo and display compliance. Jobs pay anywhere from $3.00 to $12.00 per job, and payments are made via PayPal. Field Agent works with brands like Tyson, Target, Hershey’s, and has been featured on CNET, Forbes, and The New York Times. Only available for iPhones.

Foap allows you to make money by selling photos you take on your iPhone. Download the Foap application to your smartphone and upload your photos. Once your image receives five positive ratings from other Foap users – your photo will be published for sale. You will earn $5 each time someone purchases your photo. Payments are made via PayPal when the user requests a cashout.

Related Content: 37 Ways to Make Money Selling Photos Online

GAUGE Research is a smartphone app (both Apple and Android) that rewards you for taking surveys. Surveys consist of multiple-choice questions, and a longer text or video response. Video responses payout better than plain text responses. Rewards (gift cards from 100 retailers) or PayPal cash get stored in your account, and once you reach $5, you can claim your reward. I usually earn $1 for text-based surveys that take less than five minutes.

Getaround is a smartphone application that allows you to rent your car out for short periods. List your vehicle in their marketplace and download the app. When you’re not using your vehicle, individuals can rent and unlock your car using the app. Payments are made monthly, and the average Getaround renter earns $10,000 a year ($800 a month) — not bad! Getaround is available for both iPhone and Android users.

With this Android operating app, you can earn cash via PayPal or gift cards by watching videos, trying new apps, playing games, and completing surveys. According to its website, Giftloop has paid out over three million dollars, and it has a four out of five-star rating in the app store.

GigWalk is a mobile workforce of individuals using their iPhone or Andriod smartphone to connect, explore, and earn a second paycheck as they go about their day. Just register, apply for an assignment, and then complete the task (usually verifying roads and street signs, geographic landmarks, or transportation options). Gigwalk’s workforce is available in multiple US cities. GigWalk has been featured on CNN, Business Insider, and Forbes.

Another one of my favorites! Ibotta is an iPhone and Android application that you can use to earn money when you go shopping. Before you head out on a shopping trip, complete tasks relating to your favorite brands and companies. Next, go shopping at stores like Target and Walgreens and take photos of your receipts. Once your transaction has been verified, your account will be credited with a specified cashback amount. Refer your friends and earn even more money. Payments are made via PayPal or gift card and can be transferred as soon as you earn $5.00. Ibotta has been featured on Mashable, Good Morning America, and Business Insider.

InboxDollars is both a smartphone app and a desktop portal, where you can earn money for taking surveys, reading emails, playing games, and sharing your opinion. New users can earn $5 for signing up, and once your account reaches $30, you can request a payout via check or Visa cash card. InboxDollars has an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. If you’re interested in earning with this app, you can read our full review here.

Instacart is an on-demand gig where you can get paid for full-service (delivery and shopping) or just grocery shopping. This app is available for both iPhone and Android operating systems, and you can make your own schedule, and you’ll get paid weekly. You must be at least 18 years to work for Instacart. If you’re curious about what it’s like working as an Instacart Shopper, this woman gives a good account and tips for doing so.

Related Content: 19 Flexible Ways to Make Money With Your Car

Poshmark is an application where individuals can sell women’s fashion clothing, shoes, handbags, and accessories. Download the app on your iPhone, create an account, and then start taking photos of the items you wish to sell. Once the item sells, print out a pre-paid, pre-addressed shipping label, and send off your item. When the buyer receives the item, Poshmark will deposit 80 percent of the sale price into your account. Payments are made either by direct deposit or check.

With Postmates, Android and iPhone users can earn money delivering groceries, alcohol, food, and retail items with your car, motorcycle, scooter, or bicycle. With this app, your earnings are available immediately after the delivery, and you can cash out instantly, as many times per day as needed. Otherwise, payments are automatically deposited to your bank account weekly. You must have a linked debit card to receive payments.

Related Content: Where to Sell Used Clothes Online for Cash

Available for Android and iPhone systems, Receipt Hog pays you money for shopping and taking surveys. Download the app and take photos of your receipts from any grocery, supercenter, club store, dollar store, drug store, convenience mart, beauty supply, or pet supply store. Once receipts are inputted into the system, Receipt Hog will award you with virtual coins that can be traded in for cash through PayPal or Visa, or an Amazon gift card. The information that Receipt Hog collects is summarized and used in market research reports that companies will pay for. The number of coins you earn per receipt depends on how much your total bill is. You can submit 20 receipts per week and trade 1,000 coins in for $5.00.

Rover is an on-demand app where you can earn money by walking and taking care of dogs! According to their website, top earners can earn up to $1,000 per month using the app. To get started, create a profile, accept requests (on your own schedule), and get paid within two days of the completed service.

I’m totally addicted to this app! Shopkick is a cool rewards program that is available for iPhone and Android phones. Just download the app to your phone, and when you walk into your favorite stores (Old Navy, Crate & Barrel, Exxon, Target, Macy’s, etc.), you’ll instantly earn kicks. Scan specified barcodes once you’re in the store to earn more kicks. Link up your credit card, browse through lookbooks, or refer your friends for even more kicks. Kicks can be used for gift cards from Target, Old Navy, Starbucks, or on items like clothing, electronics, or even a cruise! Shopkick has been featured on The Huffington Post, Forbes, and The Wall Street Journal.

One Last Word About Earning Money With Smartphone Apps 

While there are lots of smartphone apps that you can use to make money, not all are legit. You need to do your due diligence and read the reviews before installing on your phone and entering your information. I’m fairly cautious when trying out new apps. If there are zero reviews listed on iTunes or the Android app store – I won’t download it. You’ll also want to read reviews online and via the Better Business Bureau website.

If you want to see what smartphone apps I use to earn money on a weekly basis, check out this post — these apps pay for my Starbucks addiction!

Which smartphone apps are you using to make money? Feel free to comment on your favorite money-making smartphone apps below!

Originally published October 9, 2013. Content updated June 10, 2020.

Holly Reisem Hanna is the publisher and founder of  The Work at Home Woman, which has been helping individuals find remote careers and businesses that feed their souls since 2009. Through her unconventional career path of holding over 30 jobs and obtaining two college degrees, she’s been able to figure out how to find a career path that you’re truly passionate about. Holly’s had the pleasure of sharing her expertise on sites like CNN, MSN Money, Huffington Post, Woman’s Day Magazine, as well as being recognized by Forbes as one of the “Top 100 Websites for Your Career.” Holly resides in Austin, Texas, with her husband and daughter and enjoys reading, traveling, and yoga.

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