Every one of us could use a little extra cash. Even if you aren’t in a financial crisis, you could put that extra money towards good use. For example, paying off your student loans, saving enough money for a down payment on a house, padding your retirement funds, or establishing an emergency fund.
But, how exactly can you bring in some spare cash? One suggestion that I have is through a side hustle.
With a side gig, you can make more money and reach your financial goals sooner than you think. Additionally, in a perfect world, you would be able to put your money to work and enjoy truly passive income, or perhaps you would be able to change your side hustle into your primary job. Even if you must keep your day job, a side hustle can help you earn money from something that you’re passionate about.
The best side hustles don’t take up too much of your time, accommodate your schedule, and are something that you enjoy. And, most importantly, a side hustle should have a decent financial return.
With that being said, if you’re looking to start side hustling, then check out these 11 side gig ideas that can make you six figures,
1. Run a Blog
“By now, we’ve all heard claims that bloggers can make six or even seven figures per year,” writes Peter Daisyme previously for Due. “But isn’t that an exaggeration?” Do people really make significant amounts of money from blogging online?
Although it’s not the norm, it’s certainly doable. All of the bloggers listed below have been transformed by creating blogs that generate high passive income each month.
- “Good Financial Cents” is a successful personal finance blog run by Jeff Rose which generates $102,000 in monthly revenue.
- Robbie Richard of RobbieRichards.com earns over $60,0000 per year from affiliate revenue alone without purchasing ads or driving traffic. And that’s just one of the ways he earns money from his blog.
- For What Mommy Does blog owner Lena Gott, it took just ten months to reach a monthly revenue of $10,000. Even better, she works only 20 hours per week.
- Ramit Sethi makes millions of dollars a year with his blog I Will Teach You To Be Rich. Among his many achievements are books that have been bestselling, speaking gigs that have brought in six figures, and multiple courses that have earned him seven figures.
The four examples above are just a few. You can find thousands of examples of bloggers who are making lucrative full-time incomes with blogging, adds Peter. “There are tens of thousands more who are using blogging as a passive, supplemental source of income to cover bills or upgrade their lifestyle.”
It doesn’t matter if you want to earn $300 per month or $3 million – blogging can help you reach your goals.
In order to succeed at blogging, you must have a plan.” You can’t just throw some words into cyberspace and hope they come back with dollar signs,” he advises. This is unlikely to happen. You must instead be deliberate in your approach.
In addition to being able to generate a massive income with very little effort, dropshipping is a proven strategy for creating additional income on the side. Additionally, you can sell almost anything online with this proven business model, which is used by retailers such as Amazon.
If you’re interested in pursuing this income idea, then I suggest you check out Oberlo. In my opinion, it’s one of the easiest places to get your dropshipping business launched.
What’s even better is that physical inventory is not required to be stored somewhere and then manually packed and shipped when someone orders. Furthermore, you won’t have to spend a small fortune to get started.
Despite sounding too good to be true, this is not a scam. It’s a legit way to make money online.
The first step is to find a wholesaler and distributor with drop shipping capabilities. After that, you are responsible for marketing the products you purchase from the manufacturer. This will require you to create a shopping cart enabled website.
In order to reach your intended audience, you can make use of social media, email marketing, and a blog. Those channels funnel customers to your site so they can purchase your products. Your drop shippers will then fulfill the orders.
You should research drop-shipping partners and see what others have to say about them before choosing a partner. Ideally, you are looking for a reliable drop shipper with whom you can build a long-term relationship.
3. Become an Influencer
In order to promote their products, companies are turning to Instagram influencers – those with large, dedicated followings on the service, states the folks over at Nerdwallet. You can apply for these opportunities via a platform like Open Influence or AspireIQ, or by contacting brands you’d like to partner with.
FYI, you can also make money this way on other platforms like TikTok.
While it’s quick and easy to set up, it should be noted that this is a highly competitive field. Further, you will need to build up a large enough following to attract advertisers over time.
As soon as you have the numbers, you can start looking for paid work. By partnering with affiliate networks or by pitching brands you want to work with, you can get this done, adds Nerdwallet. Affiliate networks usually pay out earnings about a month after the campaign is completed, depending on the terms of your agreement.
4. Create an Online Course
Online education is increasing in popularity among students, professionals, and even executives who want to expand their skills and make themselves more competitive in the job market. By converting your unique knowledge and experience into an online course, you can further monetize your expertise.
You can earn money from online courses in a number of ways. For example, you can charge a fee upfront for the entire course. Alternatively, you can offer the course for free but charge a fee for each certification or license issued. Along with a product or service purchase, the course could be offered for free. There may also be a subscription model or tiered payment structure available.
However you decide to monetize your course, you first need to select the right idea. Ideally, it’s a topic that people are interested in. After that, you’ll need to outline the course and test the market through presales. Most importantly, you need to promote your course like there’s no tomorrow.
One success story of this is from Delyanne Barros. After Delyanne the Money Coach LLC right before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Delyanne offered his first mini-money makeover for $50 on Instagram. This led to the creation of “Slay the Stock Market.
By March 2021, the course had over 700 students and Delyanne was able to quit her full-time job.
5. Write and Publish an eBook
Basically, this is similar to the business of selling online courses. The key difference, though, is that you’re writing a book as opposed to producing videos.
What’s more, self-publishing and sales are made easy on sites like Barnes & Noble and Amazon. Thus, there is a chance for you to become a best-selling author and bring millions of readers to your books.
With Kindle, as an example, books are exclusively published as eBooks and traditional publishing challenges are eliminated. Therefore, nothing stands in the way of you publishing a book via this self-publishing platform. In fact, besides your time, this shouldn’t cost you more than 200 bucks for editing, cover design, and publishing.
As soon as the book is published, start marketing it as much as possible. You will rank better in search results and generate sales continuously if you receive a good response and rating from your readers. Basically, you will receive endless passive income for a single act of writing.
You don’t have to be an expert in a particular topic or the best writer in the world to write a best-selling book either. After all, writers, editors, or cover page designers can be outsourced if you need assistance.
6. Paid Ad Specialists
If you are familiar with paid internet marketing, you can make money using Google Ads. Platforms such as Freelancer and Upwork let you find one-time clients or join a bigger company to take care of their Google Ad campaigns for them. Eventually, by working with large companies that have large advertising budgets, you can grow your company.
Do you want to become a Google AdWords Specialist? Well, it’s free to start and takes as little as 2-days to get certified. If that sounds appealing to you, check out this article from CTRify. Or, you can attend Google AdWords Certification in 2 Days over at Udemy.
7. Graphic Design
Along with sites such as 99Designs or Toptal, graphic designers can also work for local companies for money online. Small businesses, in particular, may lack in-house graphic designers. As such, these companies look for local designers capable of handling projects as they become available. Often, this work may include marketing materials, brand and logo campaigns, labels, and product packaging.
There are several online job boards that post graphic design work, including Behance, Fiverr, Guru, UpWork, FlexJobs, Indeed, and many more. Besides these online job sites, networking sites such as LinkedIn and Alignable can connect you with local employers.
To get started, create a portfolio page on your website to showcase your graphic design skills. Also, don’t forget to display samples of your work on visual-focused social media sites like Instagram. When pitching graphic design work to local businesses, this will also help you build credibility.
You probably already know about Airbnb, and it can be a solid source of passive income for anyone who has an extra room or is willing to rent out their entire house.
As with any side hustle, listing your space on Airbnb isn’t completely passive or online. After all, you still have to tidy up the place for the guests, be there to answer questions, and clean up after the guests leave. Of course, you can outsource these tasks or use platforms like YourFront Desk.
Regardless, as long as you have the right location and make your listing pop, it’s possible to make six figures renting out space on Airbnb. To make your listing as eye-catching as possible, make sure that you develop a captivating headline, post stunning photos, and provide a detailed description of your property.
9. Drop Servicing
“Drop servicing, sometimes called service arbitrage or service reselling, applies that same model to intangible services and products, like copy editing, voice-over work, graphic design, or social media marketing strategy — labor that is thought to be more specialized,” writes Mia Sato for The Verge.
“In an ideal situation, everyone gets what they want: the worker makes a sale, the client gets their product, and the person in the middle makes a profit for facilitating the transaction,” adds Sato. However, it creates a strange situation: freelance gig workers don’t always know for whom they work or what the work is worth, and if problems arise, they could be hurt.
Right now, this is all the rage on TikTok. But, is it for real?
May Ng, a drop servicer based in Singapore, claims that she makes around $10,000 a month through drop servicing. She finds clients mainly in the local area and estimates that she’s completed work for between 50 and 70 businesses. To complete the job, Ng uses a staff of about 15 freelancers, mostly via Fiverr.
10. Certified Business Intermediary
Between buyers and sellers, business brokers act as “middlemen.” As such, they help the buyer and seller of a business to purchase or sell the business more smoothly.
The possibility of earning over $100k a year from just a few deals increases the likelihood of turning this side business into a full-time job since commissions are usually between 10-12%. It takes some coursework and passing an exam to earn your CBI. Just note that the exam is free, but you may have to dish out over $1,000 for the course materials.
Another tip? You’ll be more likely to be successful if you have prior business experience.
“Having an eye for a bargain can make you rich as a reseller,” writes Gabrielle Olya for Insider. “Whether your passion is clothes, shoes or something more obscure, selling items for more than what you paid for them on eBay, Craigslist or apps like Poshmark can be a lucrative side gig.”
In an interview with Insider, Alexandra Marquez, a thrift store guru who sells her finds on Poshmark, said she left a $50,000-a-year job at a marketing firm to run her reselling business full time. Her monthly income is now $5,000.
Another example is Rob and Melissa Stephenson, founders of the Flea Market Flipper. The couple has been able to not only make garage sale flipping full-time, but they’re also making over six figures by reselling clothing, appliances, and electronics online.
Frequently Asked Questions About Side Hustles
1. What should I look for in a side hustle?
It can be overwhelming to choose one side hustle when there are so many to choose from. Here are some questions you should ask yourself to help you choose the right side hustle.
- Is your side hustle idea something you’re passionate about?
- Would you be able to make money with it?
- Are you able to devote enough time to this?
- Is the area something you are skilled in, or could you learn it?
- What is the starting capital?
- How would you describe your dream side hustle?
- Are you able to have the side hustle in addition to your day job?
You can narrow down your side hustle ideas by answering these questions. When you are deciding between a few different side hustle options, I recommend putting together a pros and cons list.
2. What is the potential income from a side job?
Side hustles can generate a wide range of income. There is no guarantee that you will make hundreds or thousands of dollars every month, you might only make a few dollars every week. For example, taking surveys online only pay out $1 to $10 per survey, while you could make millions blogging.
There are many variables that influence your ability to earn side income. At the minimum, this includes what exactly you do and how much time and effort you put into it the side hustle.
3. What is your purpose besides earning money?
While viability, earning potential, and other standards should and will be the primary determinants of a decision, there is a secondary that’s typically overlooked: dual purpose.
Side-hustles should be more than just a means to earn money. For example, it should be something that you’re passionate about or give you a chance to grow personally. Additionally, you should determine if the business is one that is best suited for growth or to be a full-time venture.
4. How will you be paid?
There is no doubt that this is one of the common questions regarding side hustling. In short, it depends on who you’re working with and which payment methods you accept. In other words, you can choose to be paid by check, cash, PayPal, credit card, direct deposit, etc. Set up a separate account for your side business so you can keep track of your expenses and earnings.
And, don’t forget. If you’re getting paid, always make sure there is some money set aside for taxes.
5. Are you able to dedicate the time and energy?
In the beginning, taking on a side hustle may not be profitable and can be time-consuming. Assess its value before taking on a side hustle. Do you like what you are doing? Does it have a market? Have you developed effective sales techniques? Are you able to identify the right customers?