How would you like to earn additional money each month? What could you do with an extra couple hundred? An extra thousand? More? You could add to your savings (or start saving), pay down debt, plan for retirement, or just have extra money to do the things you want to do.
But, if you already have a full-time job, you might be wondering how you can add to your income without getting another job working long hours for someone else.
The answer? Start a side hustle.
In this article, we’re going to share everything you need to know about side hustles, how to find your own side hustle, and share a list of the best side hustles to make more money. Let’s get started!
10 Best Side Hustles to Make More Money in Any Economy:
What Is a Side Hustle?
In the current gig economy, most people know what “side hustle” means. A side hustle is something you do (on the side, as it were) in addition to your normal job. A lot of people start a side hustle to earn a little extra money, but some are able to develop their side hustles into lucrative careers, replacing their full-time jobs and starting a business of their own.
The concept of a side hustle isn’t anything new and the term itself has been around for about 70 years—a lot longer than most people realize. Historically, the term was used to mean both a scam and a legitimate side job, but these days a side hustle is largely viewed as a legitimate way to earn additional income. Of course, there are always shady multi-level marketing schemes that pull people in with the lure of earning extra income, but there are also plenty of side hustles you can use to make more money that have nothing to do with recruiting a downline.
For United States citizens with student loan debt, increasing healthcare costs, seemingly constant threats of economic recessions, and a minimum wage that hasn’t increased in line with costs of living, it shouldn’t be surprising that many full-time jobs barely pay enough for workers to cover their basic necessities, much less do anything on top of pay bills. A side hustle is a way for people to earn more money, giving them economic freedom as well as the freedom to pursue the life they want.
How to Find Your
A lot of people love the idea of taking on a side hustle to make more money but they don’t know how to get started. Fortunately, it’s really easy to find the right side hustle for you. You need only answer four questions, in fact!
1. What Are You Interested In?
What is it that you love doing? If you’re going to be putting hours in working on top of your current job, you’d better pick something you enjoy doing. It takes a lot of time and energy to build a successful side hustle and that time will be much more rewarding if you’re doing something you actually like. Create a list of side hustle ideas based on your skills and interests and pick one. Or, pick your top three and see how they feel before you narrow it down to a single thing.
2. Do You Have Money to Invest?
Some side hustles take money or other resources to get started. If you’re going to be setting up a website, for instance, you’ll need to pay for website or video hosting and the tools you’ll be using. If you’ll be making physical products, you’ll need to purchase materials. And, if you do end up starting a side business with something like Arbonne, doTERRA, LuLaRoe, or similar, you’ll need to set aside money for inventory (and have a place to store it). Remember, though, there are plenty of side hustles that don’t involve maintaining an inventory.
3. How Much Time Will You Devote to Your Side Hustle?
The third question to ask yourself is how much time you really have to devote to your side hustle. We’ve heard of people putting in full-time hours on their side hustles, working before and after their “real” job, until they developed enough business to turn the side hustle into their full-time gig.
The point is that side hustles take time. Be sure to block out time on your calendar to work on your side hustle or it’s going to fall by the wayside.
4. What About Your Day Job?
If you already have a job, you’ll need to make sure that your side hustle doesn’t create a conflict of interest with your side hustle. This could mean an overlap in the work you do or the customers you’re trying to reach. If you work as a bookkeeper for an accounting firm, for example, starting a side hustle as a freelance bookkeeper probably isn’t the best thing to do. You’ll also want to check your employee handbook. Some employers prohibit their employees from working outside of their job without express permission from the company.
If you’re able to start your side hustle while keeping your job—great! Just be sure you don’t let the lines between the two blur. When you’re on the clock for your employer, you should be focused on doing your best job for them and don’t do any work on your side hustle.
10 Best Side Hustles to Make More Money
Now that you know how to find your side hustle, it’s time to talk about the opportunities that are out there. Here are 10 of the best side hustles to make more money in any economy.
1. Become an Influencer
Have you ever wanted to be famous? With the rise of influencer marketing, you can! And, influencer marketing is a chance to earn a really good income.
Instagram is probably the most popular platform for influencer marketing, so if that’s the platform of choice for your target audience, you might want to consider becoming an Instagram influencer. Once you start posting and building a following, you’ll be able to earn money on Instagram by monetizing your account through sponsored posts, selling products, or Instagram takeovers.
The amount you can earn as an influencer depends on things like audience size and niche. To find out what your earning potential is, check out our influencer marketing earnings calculators:
To be successful on Instagram and other social media platforms, you’ll want to post consistently. The easiest way to stay consistent is to create a social media calendar.
2. Start Tutoring or Teaching Online
Many people start a well-paying side hustle by teaching English online but it’s definitely not the only thing you can teach or tutor. There are several online teaching platforms that specialize in course creation or even simply pairing you with adults or children who need tutoring help—no teaching degree required. According to the online teaching platform Outschool, teachers can create courses for children from kindergarten through twelfth grade on nearly any topic. Before you can start teaching you’ll need a background check (naturally) and your course has to be approved.
Online Course Revenue Estimator
Monthly Revenue Potential
Yearly Revenue Potential
3. Start Blogging
Blogging is the side hustle with the highest earning potential. Just look at Adam Enfroy. He started a blog, monetized it, and within a year was making bank. And, you can get started even if you only have a few minutes a day to devote to your blog. As a professional blogger, you get to decide when you work, what you write about, and the methods you want to use to monetize your blog. In other words, it’s a control freak’s dream gig.
It’s also cheap to get started with blogging (you could even start a microblog). There are plenty of free sites available but we really recommend looking into something like WordPress with Bluehost so you can get your own custom domain and don’t have to worry about another company’s branding or advertising showing up on your site.
4. Become a Virtual Assistant
If you love organizing things and keeping businesses running, starting a side hustle as a virtual assistant is a great idea. Virtual assistants do everything you’d expect from an office assistant, administrative assistance, or executive assistant—writing and responding to emails, scheduling appointments and managing calendars, maybe even some light bookkeeping. The difference is that virtual assistants do it all remotely.
One of the most fun aspects of becoming a virtual assistant is that you get to choose who you work for and what industries. Many virtual assistants have a roster of clients to whom they provide services meaning that their days are varied and interesting.
You can find virtual assistant roles on freelancing sites like Fiverr and Upwork, but there are also sites that specialize in VA jobs like Lifebushido and Time Etc. If you work as a contractor through another company you may have to put in a minimum number of hours each week but there are plenty of opportunities out there for freelance virtual assistants who want to work for themselves.
5. Start a Dropshipping Business
Dropshipping is another excellent side hustle. But what the heck is dropshipping?
Dropshipping is a retail fulfillment model where a store (that would be you) doesn’t keep products in inventory. Instead, when you sell a product as a dropshipper, the product is shipped from a third party directly to the customer. Dropshippers never handle the product directly. That means limited startup costs and low risk. As a dropshipper, your focus is on marketing and customer service. The best part? You get to be your own boss.
You can easily get started with your own dropshipping business with a company like Oberlo, Spocket, AliDropship, and others. Check out our eCommerce calculator below, to see just how much you can earn from eCommerce!
Calculate your eCommerce Earnings Potential
6. Start Freelancing
Businesses all over the world are looking for freelancers for just about any marketable skill you can think of. If you do web design and development, photography, video editing, graphic design, social media management, writing, or any number of things, you can start a successful side hustle as a freelancer. A big upside of freelancing is that it can be done online much of the time, making it a flexible option you can work into your regular schedule.
Freelancers own their own businesses and with that comes the responsibility of marketing yourself and finding your own clients. You can find clients on Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer, and even traditional job sites (be sure to specify “remote” or “work from home” in the location, if that’s what you’re looking for).
Many professionals turn to freelancing when they have skills but may not have the type of specialized degree that goes along with it. Of course, you need to know how to do what you’re telling clients you know how to do. Fortunately, there are plenty of online courses you can take to get your skills up to the task or even get certifications from highly respected organizations in your niche. For example, Influencer Marketing Hub offers a TikTok Masterclass for those who want to earn money as TikTok influencers.
7. Become an Affiliate Marketer
Affiliate marketing earnings vary from nothing to quite a hefty bit. Remember blogger Adam Enfroy we talked about earlier? He earns about $30K every month from affiliate marketing agreements. Could you use an additional $30K a month? Us too!
There are a couple of things to consider with affiliate marketing if you want to be successful. For starters, if you become an affiliate marketer for an eCommerce store, you’re likely to make less in commissions than you would if you were to just become a dropshipper. Tech and SaaS companies, on the other hand, can be quite lucrative. For example, Fiverr affiliates earn up to a $150 CPA for every first-time buyer or up to $1,000 per sale with their $10 CPA/10% revshare hybrid model (service prices go up to $10,000).
That’s quite a chunk of change.
There are affiliate marketing programs for nearly all niches. Some of the more popular affiliate programs are in these niches:
- Web hosting
- Finance and credit cards
- Beauty and makeup
- Gaming and Twitch
And, since companies offering affiliate marketing programs want to help you earn them more money, many of them already have creative assets you can use to market their products. That means you save the time it takes to create free tools and lead magnets.
8. Be an Online Mock Juror
This is a really interesting side hustle for those civically-minded among us. Lawyers and legal teams use mock juries as focus groups for impending trials. You might get a written overview of the case with all the pertinent facts and a list of questions you need to answer, or you might get a recorded summary of the case for you to share your opinions about. Intriguing, right?
While this is a great way to make some extra cash, it’s probably not going to make you rich. Online Verdict says that cases take 20–60 minutes and pay $20–$60 while other sites like eJury estimate a time commitment of 35 minutes per case for a payout of $5–$10. If you love the law, are at least 18 years old, and a United States citizen, you can earn a bit of additional money from this gig.
9. Create an Online Course or Sell Information Products
Creating an online course or selling information products takes some research. But, if you’re really good at that, why not take advantage and earn some money for it? You can either pick a topic you’re passionate about and knowledgable in to create your own online courses and information products or you can position yourself as a freelancer who creates those products for others.
Online courses can come in several different formats like webinars, full-fledged online courses with different modules and assignments, or even just an email drip campaign. For information products, you also have several different options like eBooks, cheat sheets, reports, templates, teardowns, and more.
The amount of money you can make with online courses and information products really depends on your niche, your marketing, and several other things. However, many of the people who choose this as a side hustle bring in a few thousand extra dollars per month. To earn more, create more courses and more products to offer.
10. Start an eCommerce Store
Starting an entire store sounds daunting, right? With eCommerce platforms like Etsy and Shopify, though, it’s a piece of cake. And they aren’t even the only two options you have for creating your own online store! You can also combine your eCommerce store with a dropshipping business if you don’t want to carry products.
Start a Side Hustle to Meet Your Financial Goals
There you have it! Ten of the best side hustles to make more money in any economy. This is by no means an exhaustive list of all that’s out there but we wanted to include a mix of potential ideas that would appeal to the most people—plus, the side hustles on this list can be quite lucrative or really easy. Whether you’re interested in replacing your income or just supplementing it, the ideas on this list will get you started on your way.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a side hustle?
A side hustle is something that you do on the side in addition to your normal job. A lot of people do this to generate a little extra money. Some are even able to develop their side hustles into profitable careers that ultimately replace their full-time jobs. While the term is not new, in the past it was often used to describe something shady. Nowadays, though, it is mostly viewed as a legitimate way to generate an extra income.
How can you find a side hustle?
Start by identifying your interests. Ask yourself how much time will you have available to spend on your side hustle. You’ll also have to consider your day job. For example, some employers prohibit their employees from working outside their job without express permission from the company. Lastly, you must ask yourself if you have any money to invest. Some side hustles will require money (or other resources). If you don’t have a lot to invest, starting a blog is a good idea.
What are some of the best side hustles?
Currently, some of the best ideas for a side hustle are blogging, beginning an e-commerce or drop-shipping business, working as a virtual assistant, teaching online or even creating your own online course. If you are into marketing, you can also consider becoming an influencer or an affiliate marketer. Many find that blogging is easy as it has a high earning potential and it is cheap. To start blogging, you need only a few minutes per day.
What does a virtual assistant do?
virtual assistant (also simply called a VA) basically does everything that an office, administrative or executive assistant does. They can write emails, respond to emails, schedule appointments, and manage calendars. They might even do some basic bookkeeping. The main difference is that a virtual assistant will be doing all this work remotely. In fact, many virtual assistants have a roster of clients for whom they work.
What is a drop-shipping business?
Drop-shipping is a retail fulfillment model where you do not keep products in inventory. When you sell a product as a dropshipper, the product is shipped from a third party directly to the customer. In other words, a dropshipper will never handle the product directly. You will concentrate on marketing and providing customer service. The benefits are that there are limited startup costs and a low risk involved.