How to Cyber-Beg

Panhandling online may be less embarrassing than begging in person, but it's no less daunting. See if you have what it takes to make total strangers open up their wallets.


Up next in How to Buy & Sell Things Online (20 videos)

Learn how to sell anything on line -- baked goods, textbooks, gold jewelry, used toys, handcrafted items, photos, artwork, alcohol -- with these Howcast tutorials. Check out the tips for buying stuff online, too.

You Will Need

  • Website
  • PayPal account
  • Post office box
  • Reason to beg
  • Updates
  • Thick skin
  • Advertisers (optional)


  1. Check your local and federal laws regarding internet panhandling and related tax regulations.

  2. Step 1

    Set up a website

    Set up a website explaining why you're asking for money. Choose a catchy domain name that's easy to remember.

  3. Avoid sites that charge a fee to show you how to cyber-beg.

  4. Step 2

    Set up a PayPal account

    Set up a PayPal account so visitors can make donations directly into your bank account. Open a post office box for checks and money orders so you don't have to post your address.

  5. Step 3

    Make it visually interesting

    Make your site visually interesting. Entice donors to check in regularly by illustrating how people's contributions are helping you reach your goal.

  6. Step 4

    Update it regularly

    Update your site frequently; it helps keep supporters invested in your cause. Keep the postings light; funny, self-deprecating briefings seem to be more successful at eliciting donations than serious ones.

  7. Investigate the possibility of accepting advertising on your site to earn even more money.

  8. Step 5

    Develop a thick skin

    Expect to receive nasty messages. Asking for handouts invites a certain amount of abuse, even if your cause is sympathetic.

  9. Step 6

    Don't expect miracles

    Don't expect a huge windfall. Internet panhandling is now so pervasive that few cyber-beggars rake in big bucks.

  10. Karyn Bosnak, one of the most successful cyber-beggars in history, made $13,300 in less than 4 months to help pay off her credit card debt.