Did you get an eagle’s eye? Do you keep a close watch on things around you? then you have an unknown skill that can help make you lots of bucks.
You can use this capability of keen vision to start an amazing business. You might be wondering how is just “looking” helps create a business for you, it is about what we are going to explain in detail in this article.
Keep a wide eye throughout the article to avail benefit from this hidden skill of yours.
A close observation of things is going to help you go a long way if you channel this ability in the right way and that way is to start proofreading work.
But most of you might be having a lot of questions about what this proofreading is all about. Keep on reading to know everything about it.
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What is Proofreading?
To keep it simple, proofreading is nothing but reviewing a document or a book or an article or something that is written to check and highlight if there are any errors in grammar, punctuation, spellings, formattings, etc.,
Most of the time proofreading is confused with editing, but both of them are completely two different things.
While editing is something that is done to make the information look precise before making the final copy, proofreading is done after editing and before the submission of a document for publishing to ensure that the final copy is completely free from errors that are either missed or introduced during editing.
How is Proofreading Usually Done?
Proofreading is said to be the last stage of the editing/writing process. One should proofread only after all the stages of editing are completed.
The process of proofreading usually takes time. Most of us try to proofread quickly by just having an overall glance because of which a lot is usually missed and we end up with many minor mistakes.
After all the hard work that is kept into writing, it is worthy to spend some quality time on proofreading. So first the basic rule to follow for best results is to give yourself ample time to proofread the article.
Without abiding by this simple yet most important rule, your work will be lacking in some or another way. At the same time, it doesn’t mean to work round the clock just by doing it.
It is better to try and test as many techniques as you can until you find a flexible method. Because our main aim is to focus on identifying as many errors as possible in the least possible time.
There are several techniques and strategies that you can adopt to successfully proofread content in the fastest time possible efficiently. Read further to know them.
Tips and Techniques for Proofreaders
- First of all, you need to put a lot of concentration into work. Concentration is the key as you need to spot and get your text free of errors. You need to put everything away that distracts you while doing this job.
- There are certain words in English that are pronounced the same way but have different spellings and meanings. So watching out for such words and checking whether they are suitable in a particular context helps correct most of the mistakes.
- It is always suggested to proofread the printed copy of your text. Doing it on your computer may not be fruitful. Most of the time you miss words proofreading on a computer may be due to the common eye-computer issues.
- Reading the text from different perspectives also helps. Sometimes the article may be written from one perspective but during proofreading, if it is read from other perspectives then you may find a lot of mistakes in the matter even if it is correct.
There are a lot of techniques that you can try and test to keep your text error-free. Once you have some good language and communication skills you can try as many techniques as you can.
Why is Proofreading so Important?
Proofreading is very important in many businesses including educational institutes, publishing houses, contracts, etc., to make sure that any information being provided must be credible and professional.
All the focus on detail is so important because it helps the reader not to distract due to careless/silly errors and gives them a good impression on the whole.
It helps to communicate your objective in the best possible manner so that your point is kept across more evidently and appealingly to the target group i.e. students, readers, customers, etc.
There are many reasons to create a need for proofreader almost in every online business. Here are some reasons why proofreading is important for any business existing online.
- Ensures mistakes free content & professionalism
- Provides objectivity
- Checks on word usage, spelling, and punctuations
- Avoid repetitions of words, phrases, or ideas
- Checks the consistency and clarity of content
- Smooth out the differences in writing style
- Increase brand and business value
- Increase sales and conversions
- Saves your time, money, and efforts
All the above-mentioned benefits of proofreading for the clients are the main reason behind the ever-growing demand for it in the market.
Benefits of Choosing Proofreading As a Career
More benefits to clients bring more opportunities to people and proofreading has no exception for that. This error hunting business comes with equal opportunities both for proofreaders and clients as well.
The Internet is quickly penetrating the world and making the number of online businesses increase. This reason alone is enough to make proofreaders rely on this career as the demand is on its way to increase.
If you are the one eyeing on entering this field, first, let’s understand the benefits of proofreading as a career.
- Feasible working hours.
- You can work from any part of the world.
- You can make good and easy money.
- This profession never goes out of demand.
- Set convincing pay rates for yourself.
- Improves your knowledge and skills.
- These jobs can be achieved easily with minimum qualifications and a good skill set.
The good news is that the demand for this job has gone up in the past few years and is expected to have an annual increase of 4.25 percent over the next few years.
So anyone with the required skills should not let this opportunity go in vain and make the most of it. The growth aspects of this lucrative job are discussed in the upcoming paragraphs.
Now let’s take a look at the basic requirements that anyone requires to step into this field.
Essential Requirements of Proofreading
Minimum educational qualifications are compulsory along with your skills to excel in any field. Coming to this particular job you need to have:
- A bachelor’s degree in English or communications.
- A working computer with reliable internet connectivity.
- Practical experience will be an added advantage.
- Long-term experience with advanced education to work in senior positions.
- A degree in journalism or literature will help you a lot to achieve command.
- Basic Computer knowledge.
Once you have this qualification, you are fully eligible to be a proofreader. That’s all about the basics that you need to enter this profession.
Now have a look at what proofreaders actually have to do.
How to Get Into Proofreading Business?
There are usually two ways in which you can start a proofreading business. They are:
- Start your own Proofreading business
- Find a Proofreading Job
It is up to your choice and interests which way you choose to start your proofreading business. However, we are going to give you a complete guide of both here.
1. Start Your Own Proofreading Business
Freelancing as a proofreader most preferable for this kind of field. If you want to work for a company then it may take you a long time to be selected due to the various stages involved in the recruitment process.
But as a freelancer, it may take you less procedure when compared to a full-time job to get the work. Besides you can also work flexibly without any fixed timings.
We have given a pointwise description below about how to start proofreading as a freelancing business.
1. Polish Your Skills
Attention to detail, excellent oral, and written communication skills can help you to easily get into this field. Alongside, you also need to be familiar with PC based skills such as word processing, spreadsheet, etc.
As this is an online driven generation, it will be an advantage for you to have as many computer skills as you can. Become familiar with the commonly used editorial software by the proofreaders.
2. Build Your Portfolio
First of all, start practicing and gain experience. For beginners in this field, you can start by doing it for small businesses or online publications that just require your services. Collect testimonials from them to prove yourself.
In this way, you can hone your skills and gain some experience.
3. Establish Your Rate
Create pricing for your services. There is no particular formula to create a price but you can do it by analyzing the prices of your rivals in proofreading. As your business grows, your prices also grow.
Giving some discounts to those clients who give reviews and testimonials is a good step to improve the scale of your business.
4. Possess a set of Essential Tools
Before launching your business or starting to market make sure you have all the required tools to run this business. The tools required to run a proofreading business are grammar checkers, a domain for yourself, etc.
5. Advertise Your Work
The more you can advertise your work the more you can get the opportunities.
In fact, it has become easy in today’s digital era to spread the word about anything. So you can use the internet for this purpose. There are several social media platforms that are absolutely free to promote your work and reach a large audience.
6. Get Your Clients
If you are a beginner, you can also search for proofreader jobs as a freelancer on the internet using certain keywords such as:
- Contractors/ Contract
- Telecommute, etc.,
7. Create a Network
Usually, a network of people is necessary to spread any word. In the same way, if you have a group of friends it would be easy for you to find the customers through their help.
8. Build Relationship with Clients
Maintaining a healthy relationship with your customers is one of the keys to your success. Trying being friendly so that you get to understand them and handle their issues accordingly in different situations.
9. Learn How to Deliver Best Client Service
You need to know the art of handling frustrated customers to make your business successful. Your customers should be satisfied and impressed with your services.
If you can’t handle such clients, you can hire a professional to deal with them. Or the best option is to learn how to be the perfect fit for yourself.
10. Face All The Challenges
As a freelancer, you may have to take fewer editing tests to get the work but they would like to know about your past work experience as a proofreader.
Sometimes you may not have the required qualifications despite having amazing skills and hands-on experience, in such cases don’t be discouraged.
An impressive resume is not always necessary. You can do some free work in exchange for testimonials. Using these testimonials for promoting your work and moving forward in your career is a great alternative.
2. Find a Proofreading Job
Don’t want to get into the headache of your own business? If you are okay with a bit low pay rates (maybe $15 – $25 an hour), then you can simply apply for any company and work for it.
Here you don’t need to take care of anything except your main job, you can enjoy more time. To join those companies you need to fulfill certain eligibility criteria. Here is a list of common requirements that you need to fulfill,
- Submit your resume,
- Educational Qualifications,
- Experience as prescribed
- Complete sample or test projects
These requirements may vary from company to company.
There are a lot of workplaces where the demand for proofreaders is so high. So with qualifications and a good skill set, it is easy to get into this field and have a bright future.
If you want to work for large brands or organizations you need to have some advanced skill set. Some employers prefer proofreaders with specific editorial styles.
Let’s check the 20 best-rated companies that hire proofreaders from anywhere. Go through the list, find the best company, apply for it, and start working.
Companies That Hire Proofreaders
It is an award-winning team of professional editors and proofreaders. They provided services to about +10,000 clients in +100 countries.
Hiring process: All the proofreaders must qualify for a 20 minutes screening test before getting any work assigned.
Working style: Both full-time and part-time proofreading jobs are available.
Pay rates: It depends on how fast you complete your task. Depending on the turnaround time of the work assigned, pay rates range from $20 -$46 per hour.
Other services: Editing, Resume writing.
Payment method: PayPal or Direct Deposit.
Ratings: 9.7 out of 10.0 given by clients.
Signup link: ProofreadingServices.com.
This has been started in 1997 by Chandra Clarke and Terry Jhonson. Their idea was to connect ideas and people around the world through professional language services. It is a world leader in online editing and proofreading. They processed more than 400,000 orders.
Hiring process: This company expects a university degree with at least 3 years of experience. Looks for native English speakers with an average proofing speed of 1000 to 1500 words per hour.
Other services: Editing.
Working style: In house positions and freelance positions.
Pay rates: It is based on word count and turnaround time.
Payment methods: PayPal.
Ratings: customer ratings 4.7 stars out of 5.0.
Signup link: Scribendi.com.
This is a platform that provides all kind of proofreading services like academic proofreading, business proofreading, etc., They use a two proofreader model.
Hiring process: You need to answer an independent contractor questionnaire and wait for 5-10 business days to know if you are hired.
Other Services: Translation partner, thesis, and dissertation.
Working style: Each submission is edited by two professional proofreaders.
Pay rates: Based on per word basis that is determined using turnaround time. You can expect $500-$3000 per month.
Payment method: Paypal payments.
Ratings: 4.8 out of 5.0 based on Trustpilot reviews.
Signup link: Proofreadingpal.com.
It is an awesome company founded in 2013 for premium English proofreading and editing services. Wordvice currently operates in six countries including the US, China, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Turkey with superior working quality.
Hiring process: Seeks qualified and experienced candidates in the respected field.
Other services: Editing, Translation, Content writing, Sales management.
Working style: You can do this job at any time in any part of the world. It is the best available freelance job in proofreading.
Pay rates: It is based on turnaround time.
Payment methods: Through PayPal.
Ratings: 4.8 stars out of 5.0 given by clients.
Signup link: Wordvice.
This is a UK-based online platform that provides proofreading services. And hires only those from the UK. It has been providing 24/7 proofreading services to businesses since 1999.
Hiring Process: You should be ready to undergo several difficult editing tests to get a job here. They prefer candidates with at least 5 years of experience. They usually hire from time to time.
Working Style: Make sure that the documents are perfectly edited and follow the tone chosen for readers.
Other Services: Apart from proofreading they also provide copyediting services in three languages i.e.English, Spanish, and Chinese.
Pay rates: Depends on service required, turnaround time and per-page rate( Example- 500 words per page for MS – Word, PDF, and Powerpoint formats), language selected.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5.0 based on reviews on Trustpilot.
Signup link: proofreadnow.com.
They provide flawless services with quality editing and proofreading for all kinds of businesses. They usually hire independent contractors.
Hiring process: You must have a degree. Experience in proofreading and must speak English as your first language. They conduct a short editing test which you need to qualify to get jobs assigned.
Working Style: It works mainly with contract-based or freelance editors and proofreaders. Provides suggestions and recommendations if needed.
Working hours: Since it is freelancing you can work in the hours feasible for you.
Other Services: Editing services.
Pay rates: The prices are calculated considering the number of words and the type of service. To know the types of services visit the official page. The link is given below.
Payment method: Payments are done through PayPal.
Ratings: An average rating of 4.5 out of 5.0 is given by the clients.
Sign up Link: editorworld.com.
7. Kirkus Media
It is an American book review magazine founded in 1933. This has a rich history for showcasing self-published work by curated professional writers and unbiased reviewers. It currently has openings for book reviewers. But they usually hire proofreaders and editors.
Hiring process: If you want to apply you need to upload your resume. Experience in book publishing helps to get into this platform. They work mostly with the editors of top-five publishing houses in the US.
Working Hours: Varies depends on the timelines.
Other Services: Reviewing, basic copy editing, professional editing, collaborative editing, writing, marketing.
Pay rates: The price is 6.5 cents per word, with a minimum charge for books with less than 13K words.
Ratings: 3.1 stars out of 5.0 based on the reviews given on glassdoor.com.
Signup link: Kirkusreviews.com.
8. Sibia Proofreading
They are a team of editors from around the world providing 24/7 services. It normally has proofreading jobs from home. They have professional editors and proofreaders who graduated from top-tier universities.
Hiring Process: They prefer candidates who are science experts in editing and proofreading. Preference is given to those who have a Ph.D. or equivalent qualification. This is not always mandatory. So don’t belittle yourself
Working Hours: Work from home, full-time jobs.
Other services: All kinds of editing.
Payment methods: PayPal will be accepted.
Rating: Not available.
Signup link: sibiaproofreading.com.
9. Cactus Communications
They provide top-notch English editing and medical writing solutions. It mainly engages with clients from the fields of life sciences, pharmaceuticals, humanity, physical sciences, medicine, and engineering.
Hiring process: They prefer the ones with some expertise in strategic plans. Ph.D. in the related area is a requirement.
Working Style: This is a freelancer-friendly organization. It has been ranked among the top20 companies with remote jobs for 3 years running.
Working hours: Are Suitable for everyone. Work from home, Freelancing, and Work from office opportunities are available.
Other services: Publication, marketing, Customer service, finance, operations, technology are among the other services that they provide.
Pay rates: An average salary of $3000 per month.
Payment methods: Paid once a month electronically in USDs depending on word count through PayPal.
Ratings: 4.1 stars out of 5.0 as given on Glassdoor.com.
Signup link: cactusglobal.com.
Gramlee is a web-based grammar check and editing service available for everyone. They have work from home jobs available 24/7.
Hiring process: They employ independent and professional editors with a passion for clear and accurate writing. You need to have a background in writing or journalism to consider your application.
Working style: You need to be a fast proofreader because they have a 24-hour turn around time for 3000-word documents.
Working hours: 24/7
Other services: Grammar check, APA editing, dissertation, essay editing services.
Pay rates: They charge $0.03 per word up to 3000 words.
Ratings: Clients gave 4.9 stars out of 5.0-star ratings.
Signup link: gramlee.com.
11. Scribe Writing
Scribe writing was previously called “Book in a Box”. This company has a complete suite of services that help you write, publish, and market your book.
Hiring process: This company is currently hiring freelance manuscript proofreaders. They usually prefer the ones with deep knowledge about the matter of their book. This is the first step to your qualification.
Working Style: They fully edit and proofread the manuscript by an executive editing team who has at least 15 years of experience in the field.
Working Hours: As they mostly hire freelancers, you can work in hours feasible for you.
Other services: publishing, elite ghostwriting, guided author, editing, book coaching, and scribing.
Pay rates: Vary for different services.
Ratings: According to Glassdoor.com reviews, this company has got 4.8 stars out of 5.0-star ratings.
Signup link: scribemedia.com.
Wordy is a platform that provides online editing and proofreading services to its clients. It s a London based organization founded in 2009.
Hiring process: They acquire their employees through an online testing process and also conduct a background check. They believe in your skills or to say they look for your expertise rather than your experience.
Working style: They work using a four-step testing process. It includes vetting proofreaders background as well as testing their theoretical and practical knowledge
Working hours: 24/7 availability.
Other services: editing, rewriting
Pay rates: They have got a fixed price per word method depending on turnaround time. ( For example, $0.036 per word for delivering 1200 words in 6 hours)
Payment methods: Transactions through PayPal.
Ratings: According to Trustpilot 4.1 stars out of 5.0-star ratings.
Signup link: wordy.com.
EditFast is an online platform that provides services such as editing, writing, and proofreading. It mostly hires freelancers. It has access to specialists in a wide variety of editing and writing disciplines.
Hiring process: They hire professionally qualified and tested candidates who have a degree from a recognized university. Their screening procedure includes testing for writing, editing, and proofreading using the Prentice Hall test for proofreaders.
Working style: They usually conduct an editing test for all other editors before assigning any work. Aside from editing skills, talent with the English language, reliability, and professionalism, they give key importance to the ability of the candidate to envision the underlying purpose of the clients’ document.
Other Services: writing, copy editing, and indexing.
Pay rates: Depends on word count, for example, they charge for documents up to 3000 words US $0.03 per word. They provide the freelancer with 60% of the payment from the client once the project is completed.
Payment method: All payments done through PayPal.
Ratings: Not available.
Signup link: editfast.com.
It is a Netherlands-based organization that started in 2012 with three editors. Now they are a community of more than 500 editors working from across the globe. They are known as true thesis experts.
Hiring process: They hire native speakers with a university degree. The candidates must also have high knowledge regarding grammar, academic style, and both conventions of US English and UK English styles.
Working style: The editors before getting assigned to any work undergo training at scribbr academy. One-on-one Coaching is given to them so they perform services and edit in scribbr style.
Other services: Editing, Plagiarism check, Structure check, Clarity check, Layout check, Citation generation are some of the other services provided.
Pay rates: pay rates Depends on word count, starting from $0.014 per word. The per-word rate differs with the deadline the client chooses.
Payment method: Payments will be via PayPal.
Ratings: 9.8 out of 10 stars ratings by Trustpilot.
Signup link: Scibbr.com.
15. Writer’s Relief
Established in 1994, the writer’s relief is a platform that provides remote editing jobs. They are a team of expert proofreaders.
Hiring process: Writer’s relief works with creative writers and not freelancers. They usually look for people with a talent for research, organization, and successful targeting. They select only the top 2% of all those who applied for the job.
Other services: They provide services such as writing, self-publishing support, manuscript preparation, and web designing.
Pay rates: Their pricing is considered per round, starting from $150 per round. Because the work is mainly related to creative writing it doesn’t make much money.
Ratings: 2.2 stars out of 5.0-star ratings given by glassdoor.com
Signup link: writersrelief.com.
16. English Trackers
This company provides great online editing jobs to both professionals and college students.
Hiring process: Currently the applications are closed temporarily but maintain touch to avail the opportunity. They usually hire candidates who are
Native English speakers with Minimum 2 years of professional academic editing experience, Ph.D. holder or academic editor with verifiable experience.
Working style: Two proofreaders are assigned for a job to ensure the utmost quality. They use “track changes” functions so that the client can see the changes made.
Working hours: Flexible time schedule.
Other services: The other services that the English tracker provides are editing, rewriting.
Pay rates: They also decide the pay rates with the help of word count. It is $0.275 per word.
Payment method: Bank transfer, PayPal. Payment is made on the 15th of every month for work completed before the month.
Ratings:4.7 stars out of 5.0-star ratings by Feefo service ratings.
Signup Link: englishtrackers.com.
WordsRU is a specialist editing and proofreading services platform for businesses, academics, and writers.
Hiring process: A university degree, Ph.D. or equivalent, 2 years experience, and familiarity in APA, Harvard styles are the required eligibility quotients.
Working style: They employ the services of the finest editors who have proven themselves through years of the professional and educational experience.
Other services: Manuscript editing and academic formatting styles.
Pay rates: Starting from $0.135 per word.
Ratings: 4.8 stars out of 5.0-star ratings given by shopper approved
Signup Link: wordsru.com.
18. Polished Paper
Hiring process: They take qualified candidates into the posts and conduct a 35 question test before assigning the work
Other services: ESL editing, editing, presentation creation, and desktop publishing are some of the other services that they provide.
Pay rates: Pay rates depend on turnaround time and the number of words for the project.
Payment method: PayPal.
Ratings: 4.0 stars out of 5.0-star ratings according to Glassdoor.com.
Signup Link: polishedpaper.com.
Grammar chic works on marketing and social media strategies.
Hiring Process: They conduct a find-the- errors test that the applicants must clear for selection.
Working style: They are an established organization with no contract obligations.
Other Services: Formatting, editing, resume writing, and cover letters are some of the other services that they provide.
Pay rates: Based on a specific page, word count, and the rush for delivery.
Ratings: A+ rating by BBB (Better Business Bureau) Ratings.
Signup link: grammarchic.net.
20. American Journal Experts
This is a US-based online platform that provides editing and proofreading services.
Hiring Process: You need to have a Masters’s, Ph.D., or MD’s degree to gain a position as a proofreader in this company.
Working style: From start to finish, they offer unparalleled customer support, including a dedicated team of PhDs to answer your questions about preparing, submitting, and publishing research manuscripts.
Other services: Editing, Translation, Formatting, figure services, poster preparation, video abstracts, and journal recommendations are some of the other services provided.
Pay rates: Depends on word count.
Payment method: Credit cards, PayPal, Bank transfer and AJE Prepaya are the three payment options provided.
Ratings: 3.3 stars out of 5.0-star ratings as given by Indeed.com.
Signup Link: https://www.aje.com.
Learn From Experts
Here comes the most important part if you are serious about entering the proofreading business. No matter, how disciplined you are, or how skilled you are, at some points, you will need some guidance to move on the right path.
Following the successful people in the field and learning from them is the best strategy to speed up your growth in any field. Just a small investment, in the beginning, would bring more advantages, income, and success in a very less amount of time.
Signup for this 76 Minutes Free Webinar by Caitlin Pyle who makes six-figures from proofreading business. She also teaches interested people to achieve the same success.
Also, take a look at her Free Course on General Transcription which has both theory and practice sessions for complete beginners.
Growth & Opportunities with Proofreading
Proofreading is a job where you can make a decent amount of earning by working from any place. Typically a proofreader working in a real offline office can make around $50,000 per annum.
But the scenario is different for those working from home and freelancers. According to the information from Glassdoor, proofreaders earn an average base pay of $36,290 per annum.
In order to have consistent growth, you need to keep yourself updated about all kind of latest developments in the field of the publishing industry. It is good to develop interest and skills in any other specialized work in that field so that you have good growth opportunities.
If you have more experience and credentials, you can make over $61,000 per annum. And you can set hourly rates if you have your own business.
This is a kind of profession that doesn’t go out of demand. As long as writing continues this work also continues. As said in one of the above paragraphs, the demand for proofreaders is increasing day by day.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more employment for proofreading is available in Newyork, California, Texas, Illinois, and Pennsylvania. Though you don’t live in one of these countries you need not worry because as discussed above there a lot of online opportunities.
After gaining experience and expertise as a proofreader, you get a chance to advance further to many specialized positions in the field of editing and writing.
Challenges of Proofreading
Though it appears simple to listen, the real challenges come front when you actually start working. Like any other business, proofreading also brings some challenges. But these are not game-changers as you can ace them with regular practice.
- Identifying the accent or the voice of the writer.
- Identifying the writer’s view.
- Develop advanced English skills.
- Working in a small time frame to satisfy the targets and meet the turnaround time.
- Not having the knowledge about the subject that your proofreading.
Important FAQs on Proofreading
1. How does proofreading differ from copyediting?
Copyediting is the process of making your document easy to understand and easy to read. A good copyeditor will also proofread your document as they go through the material.
2. How long does it take to proofread a document?
Proofreading is a time-consuming process. On average it may take half an hour to one hour to proofread 1000 words by any proofreader. To achieve the best results it is good to take your own time to proofread.
3. What does a Proofreader not do?
A proofreader should not do copyediting, indexing, page layout or design, and seeking permissions unless they have separate negotiation and briefing.
That was all about what you need to know about proofreading. Now you are just a lead away from starting your career in proofreading.
We wish and hope that all your trials are successful and you find a flexible and profitable job. Be ready to take charge of the job with your eagle eye.
Comment below your suggestions, experiences, or any queries below. I would love to get to know your thoughts.
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Siva Mahesh is a full-time blogger and personal finance expert featured on US News, Yahoo Finance, Legal Zoom, The Simple Dollar, Databox, Business.com, Business News Daily, and more. He is the owner/founder of Dreamshala, a go-to place for 100,000+ monthly readers to find legit work from home jobs and make money online ideas.