As life becomes increasingly expensive and more people seek to enjoy home ownership, travel, fashion, tech and more the side hustle has become a staple in the millennial closet. The internet is inundated with stories of side hustle successes, with millennials giving up day jobs pursuing passion projects. In reality this is a select few. However, though few become millionaires, many are successfully making additional income.
For those of you who live under a rock or who simply are not millennials and find yourself wondering what a side hustle is; it is a way of making money outside of your 9 to 5. Fundamentally is a means to kickstart your financial growth. Here I have compiled a list of the top 10 ways of earning extra money.
Firstly it must be made clear that there is no fast fix for low cash flow. Most side hustles take time and work. In many cases money may not be earned in the first couple of years, and most likely will actually cost money. These therefore frequently require passion and perseverance. Here I am exploring the most common side hustles.
- 1. Start a dropshipping business
Youtube is overflowing with how to videos and stories of success. Dropshipping is selling a product to a customer, without actually owning or handling any inventory. The risk is low, you do not need to purchase or store any products. The manufacturer packages and ships the products to the buyer on the seller’s behalf. The focus as a dropshipper is on marketing, selling and customer service. This is ideal for anyone with a background in marketing, as it does involve some branding and entrepreneurship.
With dropshipping you can start in an area you are passionate and knowledgeable on. This can include fashion, sporting equipment, home décor, make up etc. Often people build an audience through tutorials (e.g make up, fashion etc), and market initially through this. Almost any niche can be explored in dropshipping making this a great place to start. The most common platforms are shopify and amazon.
- 2. Freelance writing
The best side hustles are the ones that allow you to earn extra money from the comfort of your own home. This is certainly true in freelance writing. Since you are trading time for money, this is unlikely to make you millions, but people are comfortably earning between $500 and 3000$ (£400 to £2500) per month on websites such as Problogger, Fiverr and Upwork. Through this you can build your portfolio which will make getting clients easier.
- 3. Affiliate marketing
This is common place online. The likelihood is that many of your online purchases from places such as amazon resulted in someone else earning a small stipend. Essentially this involves partnering with brands or stores to sell their products. You are given affiliate links for products. If customers make their purchases through your links you earn a small percentage. Affiliate marketing is one of those ideas that can either make a lot of money or nothing. It’s not just about finding the right product to sell, but also finding the right brand to partner with. The most common affiliates programme is Amazon associates. However large tech companies could pay you as much as $2000 for a single customer.
- 4. Drive for Uber
This is probably not that surprising. Uber is one of the biggest thing to hit road in years. It connects passenger and driver, and more importantly allows almost anyone to become the driver. With most working controversial zero hours contracts, you can work as much or as little as possible. With a flick of a (touch screen) button you can jump online and literally start earning money at any time of the day. Unsurprisingly many young people are using this as a means of earning additional money.
- 5. Create an online course
If you know something, why not teach it. Many are utilising their knowledge and building online courses on platforms such as udemy and teachable. Depending on course success, potential earnings are very high. After your initial outlay and time investment earnings are entirely passive. The key here is delivering value.
- 6. Become a social media influencer
Ok this is not the quickest or easiest way of earning money. But if you do manage to crack the social media algorithm, it can potentially be lucrative. This time and money investment his however high. You will have to pay for clothes, travel, experiences etc. However, when you build your tribe, brands and companies will pay for access. The good news is you can become an influencer in anything you are passionate about e.g fashion, shoes, cake making, dogs, cigars etc. The bad news is it’s a saturated market and breaking in is very difficult. Once you build your audience you can monetize in a couple of different ways: sponsored posts, Instagram takeovers or selling products. On average influencers can charge between $200 and $500 for a post, though this will depend on the size of your following. Some influencers can earn thousands of dollars/pounds for a post.
- 7. Sell your photography
Believe it or not this is one of the most common side hustles. If you have a camera and some semi-decent editing skills this could become a pretty lucrative side hustle. If you like taking pictures, why not sell them on stock photography sites. Landscape photography of your city or your travels can be sold to publications and online platforms and blogs. Sites like foap allow you to sell you phone photos. Alternatively, you can print you photos on to canvases, phone cases and t-shirts. If you have more advanced skills you can venture into event photography. I personally know several millennials with successful day jobs in finance, tech and medicine, who also run successful photography businesses. Wedding photography can pay thousands of dollars/pounds for each event.
- 8. Start a Blog
This is great way to start earning money as it can be done from home. It allows you to build your own brand and exercise you entrepreneurial skills. For a long time it was very trendy to be a blogger and many people tried and failed. However you must stick with it. As it gains traction and revenue increases many bloggers are actually able to give up their day jobs. The key to success is to create a blog about something you are genuinely passionate about, rather than something you believe might make money. These include things like yoga, beauty, fitness, parenting, business, tech etc. It’s important to pick a niche, as it makes it easier for your audience with similar interests to engage. You can monetize the blog in multiple ways: affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, adding a shop and selling dropshipping products.