Who Else Wants to Grow Their Bitcoins? Here Are 14 Ways

    Clement Chan March 04, 2015 - Posted by Clement Chan on Guides

    So you have some bitcoins in your hands. How can we grow our existing Satoshis into 1 μBTC (0.000001 BTC) or—dare we dream it—1 BTC? Read on to find out!

    1) Lend BTC on a peer-to-peer lending service

    These two sites offer a similar service with marginal differences; they’re both essentially a marketplace that connects borrowers to lenders.

    The idea is this: borrowers who need to borrow BTC for their business or investment offer a reasonable compensation (in the form of interest) to lenders.


    Image from btcjam.com

    To weed out scammers, both services offer a gauge on how trustable a borrower is as borrowers can:

    • submit IDs for identity verification
    • submit their source of income for verification
    • connect their Linkedin, Facebook, eBay, Twitter, and PayPal accounts

    BTCJam goes one more step further with credit card and bank verification.

    Regardless of the verification system in place, you should always diversify between the loans you’re providing. There’s a reason why this adage is still relevant now: “Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.”

    In the event a borrower defaults, there’s only a low chance that you’d be able to recover your loan. While BTCJam uses Net-Arb, the process of loan recovery is tedious and time-consuming.

    Time invested: may be a lot. Need time to find reputable borrowers with high credit scores. As these borrowers are in high demand and they often get funded pretty quickly, it may be a while before you can locate a borrower with lower risk. 
    Risk: fraudsters; loan defaults
    Reward: medium-high
    Expected APR: varies, anywhere between 9% – 19%

    2) Lend BTC on Chinese exchanges 

    To help BTC traders with their margin trading without a large commercial entity, regular Bitcoin users can now double as a lender.

    Unlike lending on a peer-to-peer service, both borrower and lender will not know the other party’s identity.

    And as a lender, you may offer BTC at an interest rate and maximum period of lending you specify, to be used by a margin trader. Borrowers may or may not take you up for it.

    Both Bitfinex and BitVC do not have deposit or withdrawal fees.

    Time invested: not a lot; depends on how “attractive” your specified interest rate and max. period of lending are
    Risk: while there is no counterparty risk from the borrower, the exchange, however, controls your funds. This also depends on whether it can remain solvent in the event of a market crash
    Reward: medium

    3) Save in interest-bearing BTC accounts

    While both sites are based in China, BitVC is also available in English. Both wallets function as an interest-bearing savings account.

    As Bitcoin is not an inflationary currency, questions are often raised as to how these sites can afford to pay interest to their users. And it’s a good question to ask.

    For Yubibao, the income is derived from “leverage fees paid by borrowers who do margin trading on BitVC”, of which 80% of the fees are allocated to Yubibao savers [1].

    For JUA, the company generates income by purchasing mining machines to mine for BTC, lending BTC, and investing in other companies [2].

    Time invested: minimal
    Risk: whether to trust an exchange that holds your money. As such, there’s a risk that they may be shut down or hacked
    Reward: medium

    4) Start an online service and solicit donations via Bitcoin

    If you have an available server that you’ve been renting for other purposes anyway, you may want to consider starting a useful online service that visitors will keep returning to, where you can then solicit donations via Bitcoin.

    An example of a useful site include: http://smallpdf.com. While the site has nothing to do with Bitcoin, it offers a useful service to compress, convert, merge, or split PDF files.

    Time invested: a lot
    Risk: no risk involved. If it doesn’t pan out, the only thing you’ve wasted is your time
    Reward: low to medium

    5) Complete micro-tasks to get Bitcoin

    While these tasks take only a few minutes at any one time, it takes a long time before you can accummulate any substantial amount.

    BitcoinGet:

    You can earn BTC by completing micro-tasks. Similar to Amazon’s Mechanical Turk, users get to do simple tasks and get paid for it. These are usually tasks that humans can easily do but computers cannot.

    It also pays out at 60 bits, usually within 24 hours.

    CoinTasker:

    Like BitcoinGet, some of the tasks available include completing surveys and downloading apps. It also pays out at 5,000 bits.

    Work4Crpyto:

    Similar to the above two sites, Work4Crypto pays out in altcoins like Dogecoin, which you can then sell for Bitcoin if you so desire.

    Time invested: low to medium
    Risk: no risk involved. If it doesn’t pan out, the only thing you’ve wasted is your time
    Reward: low

    6) Sell your items


    Image from Karen Horton

    Glyde:

    Do you have a game or gadget lying around that you've not used for a long time?

    Glyde is a platform that allows you to sell your used phones, tablets, MacBooks, or video games for Bitcoin. Unlike other platforms, upon getting a buyer online, Glyde will ship you a shipping kit with a prepaid label. Your package will also be tracked and insured.

    Cryptothrift:

    Similar to eBay, Cryptothrift allows you to auction and sell your items for Bitcoin or Litecoin. It also has a user feedback system that allows buyers to determine the trustworthiness of a seller.

    Time invested: low
    Risk: there may be buyer fraud. As with other marketplaces like eBay, always document your items (take photos of the product and serial number) before shipping them
    Reward: low to medium

    7) Sell your services

    Dogerr:

    Inspired by Fiverr, this site allows users to offer their services—be it designing logos, solving difficult math equations, or writing a short article—and be paid in Dogecoin. You can then sell them for Bitcoin if you wish.

    Time invested: dependent on the services you're offering
    Risk: while sellers have to send their Dogecoin to Dogerr's escrow, there may be a possibility that the seller will not pay up
    Reward: low to medium

    8) Watch videos and get paid in Bitcoin

    PerkTV:

    With PerkTV’s app on iOS and Android, you can watch videos on your mobile phone and get 1 point each (which equals $0.01). Back in its heydays, you used to be able to get 4 points for each video.

    And if you think you can leave your phone running non-stop, think again. A pop-up will appear after an hour to make sure that you’re still watching.

    With your accummulated points, you can then redeem $25, $50, and $100 worth of BTC via a separate Perk Wallet app on iOS and Android. The BTC will then be transferred to your Coinbase account.

    However, the rate to Bitcoin is 80% of Bitcoin’s actual value, so you don’t get the full value of Bitcoin compared to redeeming in cash equivalent gift cards.

    In addition, redemptions are only processed once a week. [3]

    BitcoinGet / CoinTasker:

    You can similarly watch videos and be paid for it at 50 uBTC for every 30 seconds of video.

    Time invested: not a lot
    Risk: no risk involved
    Reward: low

    9) Listen to an online radio and earn Bitcoin

    FaucetFM:

    If you’re working at your computer all day, you may be interested in listening to an online radio to earn Bitcoin. (In fact, you can just mute your computer and still earn.)

    You’ll be prompted with a CAPTCHA every 10 minutes, which will then garner you 500 Satoshis. Payments are also processed every day at midnight EDT.

    Time invested: not a lot to just enter the CAPTCHA if you’re going to use the computer anyway
    Risk: no risk involved
    Reward: low

    10) Bitcoin faucets


    Image from Angie Harms

    There are simply too many to list—there are now 106 known working Bitcoin faucets at the time of writing. The full list may be found here: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=74046.0.

    Almost all sites have a minimum payout. They use a countdown timer before you’re allowed to click a button to accumulate enough Satoshis to withdraw.

    These sites usually earn money through ads; you often cannot use them if Adblock is enabled.

    Time invested: not a lot
    Risk: no risk
    Reward: very low

    11) Getting involved with Altcoins

    Why would you want to dabble in altcoins?

    As you can sell altcoins for Bitcoin, this is yet another way to increase the size of your BTC wallet.

    Mine Altcoins:

    Time invested: it’s passive, but generally requires an upfront cost to purchase powerful computers
    Risk: Altcoin may not take off
    Reward: potentially high 

    Trade Altcoins:

    Time invested: a lot in order to gain sufficient knowledge
    Risk: may inadvertently fall under a pump and dump scheme
    Reward: potentially high 

    Altcoin faucets:

    Like the list of Bitcoin faucets before this, you may find an updated list of Altcoin faucets here: https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=768932.0

    Time invested: not a lot
    Risk: no risk
    Reward: very low

    Altcoin bounties:

    As Altcoins pop up, some of the creators or communities may require specialized help in certain tasks to promote their coin, such as translation, marketing, or code debugging.

    A “bounty” is then established. Contractors who complete the tasks will be paid in that altcoin.

    Time invested: moderate
    Risk: Altcoin creators may not pay up
    Reward: moderate

    12) Affiliate programs

    If you already have an account with a Bitcoin-related site that offers an affiliate program, this is another way you can earn Bitcoin. It’s as easy (or hard) as referring someone. The corresponding business gets a new customer, while you gain a referral bonus (paid in BTC).

    Many sites these days have an affiliate program, such as Coinbase.

    Time invested: not a lot
    Risk: none
    Reward: low to moderate

    13) Publish online ads

    Do you have your own blog or site? If so, you may want to consider publishing ads with programs that pay out in Bitcoin. Some of the services that offer this include:

    • CoinURL
      • Apart from offering contextual banner ads, CoinURL also has a URL shortening service that displays interstitial ads where you can earn on each click.
    • BitClix
      • Uses a PPC (pay per click) system.
    • Anonymous Ads
      • This platform has been around for a while now. It also pays based on impressions.
    • BitMedia
      • Proclaimed to have comparable rates to Google Adsense. Uses a PPC system.

    Time invested: not a lot if you already have your own site
    Risk: some sites may end up not paying out to you
    Reward: low to moderate

    14) Others


    Image from Michele M. F.

    There are other ways to grow your Bitcoin holdings, but many of the solutions in these methods have a history of being scams and thus may not be worth the risk. If you do want to explore them, we highly advise that you research them on your own time.

    • Cloud mining
    • Investing in ICOs

    Conclusion

    There are more ways than what’s listed above that would earn you some extra Bitcoin. Having said that, always be wary if a site claims that it can provide high returns at a low risk.

    Trust your instincts. As many people have recited time and time again, if it’s too good to be too true, it usually is.

     


    Clement Chan
    About Clement Chan — Clement is currently working towards his CFP certification in New York. Read his insights on personal finance and travel on his blog. Follow the author on Twitter @saigoheiki

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