- The easiest way to acquire some bitcoins is through an exchange. You can also buy BTC using Over The Counter methods or a cryptocurrency ATM,
- Trading cryptocurrencies can be a good way to earn bitcoin,
- Mine some profitable altcoins and convert it into bitcoin,
- Use your existing business/skills to sell your goods/services for bitcoin, find a job with a crypto company or get a proportion of your salary in BTC with Bitwage,
- Join referral programs or get bitcoin as cashback for online purchases,
- Take part in microtasks, play games and earn bounties, and
- Lend your bitcoin to earn a small return.
One of the easiest ways of getting bitcoin is by buying it on exchanges. You can transfer fiat currency or cryptocurrencies to exchange it for bitcoin. It may require you to submit identity documents and personal information.
If you are dedicated and can invest time and money, you could also turn your hand to trading to generate a full-time income, paid in bitcoin. By trading cryptocurrencies on leverage or by trading altcoins in spot markets, it is possible to earn more bitcoins.
However, becoming a profitable trader requires a lot of dedication, experience, and knowledge. Check out our Help Centre for a collection of useful trading articles and resources.
OTC and Bitcoin ATMs
You can also buy bitcoin Over The Counter (OTC) using a peer-to-peer exchange (such as LocalBitcoin, Paxful, and LocalCryptos), or from Bitcoin ATMs. Compared to buying from exchanges, these methods have their own trade-offs in terms of price, convenience, and security.
While bitcoin ATMs may be convenient to those in the city, they are more expensive than exchanges and out of reach for people who do not live in large cities. ATMs also have limits on how much bitcoin you can buy.
OTC markets and online vendors also sell bitcoin at higher prices than exchanges but may be more convenient if you do not have an account with an exchange. OTC markets also offer you the opportunity to buy and re-sell cryptocurrencies to make a small profit if you have enough capital and can time the markets or find buyers that are willing to pay a premium for privacy or convenience.
While bitcoin mining is in the hands of specialist enterprises and unprofitable for the hobbyist miner, you could mine other Proof of Work coins and convert some proceeds to bitcoin. While it takes some technical knowledge and investment, building a mining rig for a profitable altcoin could be a good way to earn some bitcoin.
Honeyminer applies this idea on a small scale to allow anyone with a laptop or computer to earn a small amount of bitcoin. The program mines the most profitable altcoins and converts it instantly to bitcoin for its users.
‘Spec mining’, short for speculation mining, is a way you can make a profit in mining, which involves monitoring new Proof of Work coin announcements on BitcoinTalk and mining the coin at a very early stage. If you believe the fundamentals of a project are good, then you have a chance of turning a good profit, which you can then exchange for BTC.
As a Payment for Goods or Services
If you run a business, you can use bitcoin payment processors such as BTCPay, BitPay, CoinPayments, or CoinGate to accept bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Business owners should run a full node for more security and use it as a wallet for incoming payments.
Similarly, if you work as a freelancer, you can request to be paid in bitcoin and will need a wallet to be remunerated for your services.
You can find jobs that pay in bitcoin/cryptocurrency by using:
- Angel’s List,
- r/Jobs4Bitcoins, and
- Working For Bitcoins.
Since Bitcoin is an open source movement, there are no dedicated marketeers. Anyone can contribute to spreading the word and being creative can pay off:
- ‘Bitcoin Sign Guy’ received around $16,000 in BTC after he photo-bombed Janet Yellen at a televised Federal Reserve hearing with a sign saying “Buy Bitcoin”,
- French artist Pascal Boyart earned himself around $12,500 in bitcoin over two years for his bitcoin-themed graffiti murals. By including a QR code in the mural, Boyart received donations from all over the world.
Content creators may generate small earnings through the Brave browser (converting the native BAT to BTC) and the Lightning-enabled browser extension tippin.me. Also, there is the Patreon alternative Tallycoin and publishing platforms like Steemit and Publish0x.
Even if you work a 9-5 and are not a business owner, Bitwage allows workers to get a proportion of their monthly pay in bitcoin. The way it works is as follows: you give your HR department the bank account details for Bitwage. Then your paychecks will be automatically split into fiat and bitcoin each month, giving the average worker a convenient way to employ a Dollar Cost Averaging (DCA) investment strategy with their wages.
Alternatively, you could apply for part-time/full-time jobs with companies involved in the cryptocurrency industry, as many of these businesses are willing to pay their employees in bitcoin or ether. By searching on job websites such as LinkedIn for terms such as ‘cryptocurrency’ or ‘bitcoin’ in the Jobs section, you can find relevant openings and potential careers where you can get paid in BTC.
There are dozens of sites where you can earn small amounts of bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies for doing small tasks, such as:
Faucets also give away small amounts of cryptocurrencies for free. The first ever BTC faucet gave away 5 coins at a time, currently worth just under $50,000. These days, the rewards are much lower and only worth your time if you want to experiment with cryptocurrency.
If you have skills in programming or cybersecurity, you can earn bitcoin (or other cryptocurrencies) through bug bounties. Many cryptocurrency companies offer bounties to white-hat hackers who manage to find vulnerabilities or potential improvements in their applications. For example, Coinbase paid out $30,000 as a bug bounty through its HackerOne program in 2019.
You can find a list of open bug bounty programs here, many of which are cryptocurrency exchanges or altcoin projects. Bounties are even available for social media promotions and marketing. Check out Bounties Alert to see if you can earn some cryptocurrency and become a digital bounty hunter.
Earn Rebates When Shopping
There are a small but growing number of companies that are capitalising on the cryptocurrency revolution by offering their customers cashback in the form of bitcoin. By negotiating discounts with big retailers, These companies are helping retailers tap into new markets and negotiate discounts, which allows them to attract cryptocurrency enthusiasts with rewards paid in BTC.
When buying high-value items means you can stack more sats, since the amount of bitcoin you will get as cashback will be higher. One of the best examples is Lolli, which makes every purchase through their app or browser ad-on an investment into BTC. Whenever you buy something through Lolli, you get a certain percentage back in bitcoin.
Other examples include Pei and FoldApp. Most of these merchants that have partnered with these companies are based in the United States though. However, FoldApp are looking to expand to Canada, the UK and Europe soon and yo can currently get cashback from purchases at Starbucks locations outside of the United States.
For those outside of the United States, CoinRebates may be a suitable alternative. As long as you can get the product shipped to your country, you can receive cashback in the form of bitcoin. BitcoinRewards is another way to earn bitcoin when shopping online. BitcoinRewards has more than 1,500 retailers to choose from, across several countries like Australia, Brazil, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Rewards are processed around 24 hours after each purchase.
Earn While You Play
Similar to microtasks, you can also play games to earn small amounts of bitcoin.
Satoshi Games is a gaming studio solely dedicated to creating games where the players can earn bitcoin and has even revamped the blockbuster game Fortnite into Lightnite, a shoot ‘em up powered by Bitcoin’s Lightning Network.
Another shooting game based on the Lightning Network is Bitcoin Bounty Hunt, which holds your BTC in a non-custodial wallet and allows you to add to a player’s bounty to make him a more wanted target. While it’s still early for these bitcoin games, there is a promising future where gamers will be able to earn more significant amounts of money and even the potential for tournaments with prizes paid in cryptocurrency.
Even if you don’t play these niche games, you could earn bitcoin through tips when streaming with Twitch while playing your favourite console games.
It takes money to make money, but one good way of getting bitcoins if you have a large following or circle of friends is through referral links. Referral programs offer discounts and/or rewards to the referrer and encourage them to bring new customers to a business through word of mouth and the monetary incentives involved.
A lot of bitcoin exchanges and cryptocurrency companies offer referral programs. Users can create unique links to share on social media and when new users sign up with those links, the referrer will earn a commission. If you get enough people to use your referral links across different services, you can acquire some BTC.
With referral programs for cryptocurrency exchanges, you can give your unique link to new users, and once they start trading, you earn a fixed percentage of their trading fees. Join Interdax’s referral program to earn 20% of your referee’s trading fees instantly in BTC, while your friends will save 10% on their fees.
If you have some bitcoin or cryptocurrency holdings already, you can lend out your cryptocurrency and earn interest either through: exchanges (to borrow funds to margin traders), peer-to-peer lending platforms or cryptocurrency interest accounts.
You can earn bitcoin over time as passive income, but lending bitcoin is riskier than some other methods outlined above. The potential returns from lending BTC are higher than leaving your money in the bank, but how different companies are able to offer such high returns may vary significantly, so always exercise due diligence when lending out your cryptocurrency.