Side hustle is the new side chick. Gig economy is THE buzzword lately, no doubt. Everyone wants to bring in a little extra money.
If you’re always broke, trying to pay down that debt or save some side cash and just can’t…
If you hate your job and feel like a scrub when you go to work every morning…
If you’re not feeling on your A game and smiling every time you check your bank account…
It’s time for you to start reeling in multiple streams. If you’re not part of the digital revolution, you’re gonna be left behind.
So, without further ado, here are the best ways to get that side hustle going in 2019. No BS surveys, no secret shopping for $2 checks, no guinea pigging yourself to mad scientists, just straight, legit ways to make extra money.
Ranked by potential to go digital and scalability (because turning your side gig into your FT money maker is the dream), here we go…
47. Teach yoga
You can’t go anywhere without running into lululemon wearing green tea drinkers talking about their auras.
It costs a few hundo to get certified, but you can easily make that back in a day if you can fill a class with 30+ people willing to pay $10 each. The industry is way saturated though, so it’ll take time to build up the credibility and fame you need to really make a dent.
46. Odd jobs/chores
Offer to help neighbors, friends, or acquaintances with chores in exchange for some cash. Maybe check out Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace, but remember to consider the safety hazards of meeting people off of a website like these.
Instead of only looking around manually for jobs, sign up for TaskRabbit. TaskRabbit lets people post all sorts of odd jobs, from grocery pickup to calling customer service on your client’s behalf. (1)
45. Driving around
Lyft drivers in big cities make a solid $377/month, and Uber drivers rake in $364/month. It’s definitely not quit your day job material, but it’s not bad for a little side money. The more you drive, the more you’ll make. (1)
Best part is you can work whenever you want for Uber and Lyft simply by clocking in on the app. Try driving during weekend nights for the surge pricing, if you can tolerate drunk people, of course.
You do have to have a car that’s less than 10 years old, and piling on the mileage every weekend will take a toll on your car’s value and longevity.
44. Sell your plasma
You can make money selling your body… as in your blood plasma. Many donation centers will pay you $20+ per visit to sit there with a needle in your arm for an hour or a bit longer. Might not be a whole lot, but you can watch Netflix while you’re in the donation chair if you want.
Make sure you meet the requirements before you try signing up. (2)
Parents will always be willing to fork over some cash to watch their child if you’re qualified. Ask your friends and acquaintances since people who know you are more likely to trust you.
Or, you can list your services on Care.com and wait for the parents to come to you. (2)
42. Dog sitting
People will pay a good $15-$20 for you to take their dog on a walk during your lunch break. If you can manage to take 10 dogs out on your lunch break, that’s $150 in your pocket.
People will pay even more money if you take care of their dogs during long periods of absence, such as when they go on vacation or travel for work.
Get on Rover.com, set up a dog walker profile, and start getting yourself some good reviews. (2)
41. Website testing
Ever been on a website that’s laggy, ugly, or terribly unintuitive? You can get businesses to pay you for telling them how crappy or good their website is that by signing up for a website testing service.
UserTesting, a leader in the website testing market, will pay you $10 for every 20-minute video test you complete. (3) $30 an hour isn’t bad for such a simple gig, and you’re doing a good deed for web surfers everywhere.
40. Movie extra
You don’t have to live in Hollywood to be a movie extra anymore. In fact, film-making hubs are exploding around the country and places like Georgia and Louisiana are taking over the movie industry thanks to tax breaks. (3)
You can make around $50-$100/day as a movie extra, and you might get to see yourself on the big screen.
39. Art Modeling
No, you don’t need to be jacked and shredded to be an art model. Some might require you getting nude, but if that makes you uncomfortable, there’re plenty of art modeling gigs that don’t require you to strip down
Sitting still (nude or not) for a few aspiring artists could earn you $20-$30 an hour. Reaching out to local art schools is your best bet for finding work, but browse online job boards too.
38. Flight searching
On Farefetch, people post flights they want and how much they’re willing to pay. If you find it for cheaper, you pocket the difference. It’s actually pocket change most of the time, but you can nag $50 or $60 for some flights. (4)
37. Essay ghostwriter
It’s a moral gray area for sure, but if you’re decently smart and willing to go full-on no shame and write essays for college kids online, you can make pretty good side money.
You might only make a few hundred per week to start, but if you can upgrade to writing history papers for rich ivy leaguers or college entrance essays for wealthy foreign kids, you can start making a few hundred per essay. (5)
36. Private lessons
Good at guitar? Former basketball player? Start giving private lessons in your skill for pay. As a nice little bonus, teaching others how to do a skill usually strengthens your own ability to perform that skill.
35. Data monkey
The money is literal nickels and dimes, but you can do it just about anywhere. Sign up for Amazon’s Mechanical Turk and pick up small, quick tasks while you’re sitting on the subway, or the toilet, or in your lame office job. (6)
Nickels and dimes add up to dollars, and you could probably rake in an extra $10-$15/day if you’re really diligent about it.
If you happen to speak two languages fluently, you’ve got a big money making skill. Pass their exams, and websites like Gengo, OneHourTranslation, and Unbabel will pay pretty decent side dough for you to translate stuff.
33. eBay flipping
Go ahead and pop some tags with $20 in your pocket. This is about that thrift shop swag.
When you find something good, nab it and then sell it for twice the price on eBay. Repeat the process at garage sales, flea markets, Craigslist, and basically wherever you can find a good deal. One guy made $30,000 in side money in one year selling crap he found at flea markets. (10)
32. Rent stuff
The sharing economy isn’t the future, it’s already taken over. 44.8 million adults used sharing economy services last year, and that number will double by 2021. (11) Get on it.
Rent your spare bedroom on Airbnb. Rent your clothes on Style Lend and Date My Wardrobe. (12) (13) Rent your car on Turo. (14) Rent your RV on RVShare. (15) Rent just about anything you have laying around on Loanables. (15)
31. College coach
There are families out there that will shell out $42k large to someone who can help their kid get into an Ivy League. (16)
But even if you’re just helping kids get into mediocre colleges, editing their college entrance essays, or guiding families through the financial aid process, this is a solid way to make extra money if you know a thing or two about college admissions.
30. Personal trainer
Do you even lift, bro? If you can, you could make about $13-$17/hour in side cash as a personal trainer at your local gym. (17)
However, if you take your personal training to the digital world, virtual personal trainers can scale up and make a lot more money. Not only can you coach clients online, but you can write workout plans and sell them to fitness hopefuls.
Training Journal says virtual coaching is the wave of the future. (18)
29. Online sales rep
If you’ve got sales chops and aren’t afraid of a few no’s, try picking up a part-time, work-from-home, commission-only sales gig.
If you end up working for a startup, prove yourself by making big sales. You might be able to negotiate yourself a little equity if you want to.
Calling the grammar police. Now you can make money off your annoying habit of correcting everyone else’s sentences.
Websites like Fiverr and Upwork make it easy to make side money by proofreading everything from high school essays and letters to corporate announcements and manuscripts from budding writers. (19) (20)
It’s about as thrilling as a repair manual, but transcribing audio to text pays consistently, and you don’t need to have any skills. Transcribers can make anywhere from $12-$20/hour on websites like Transcribe Anywhere, Rev, and TranscribeMe. (21) (22) (23)
26. App developer
Back in 2011, global app downloads hit around 2.5 billion. In 2018, that number was a whopping 194 billion total downloads. (24)
How many apps do you have on your phone? If you can write code, or learn to write code, focus on mobile app development. The demand is insane.
Take those friendship bracelets you used to make for your buddies and sell them on Etsy for side money. If you’re too lazy to turn your house into a Hobby Lobby and go full-on arts and crafts, start an e-commerce site that runs completely on affiliate links and enjoy the passive income.
24. Print-on-demand T shirt business
Launching your own t shirt business can’t be any simpler thanks to print-on-demand.
All you have to do is create the design (or just buy a design from someone else), sign up for a print-on-demand service like Teespring or Merch by Amazon, and handle the marketing. The print-on-demand service creates your shirt whenever a customer orders one.
23. Flip websites
Buy a few domain names you think will be in demand, and then sell them a year later. Or even a few months. One guy netted a $58,000 profit in less than 2 months by flipping 8 different domains. (25)
22. Email marketing
How many email newsletters are you subscribed to? Do they bombard you every day with content? That’s because it makes them money.
You too can make money with email marketing, and not just as a freelance copywriter. Grab a cheap subscription from an email marketing service, start up a niche email newsletter targeting a specific audience, then send them interesting and helpful content on the daily.
Monetize your efforts by partnering with relevant companies and doing affiliate marketing. It’s like blogging, but in your inbox.
Podcasts are hot, and only getting hotter as people find ways to cram learning into their busy lives.
Pick a non-saturated niche, have some interesting stuff to talk about, acquire a microphone and recording software, and start inviting guests if it’s interview style.
When your audience grows, you can earn income through ads/sponsorships, premium episodes, live shows, and your own products.
20. Graphic design
Creatives will want to get in on this. Designing a simple logo for a medium-sized company can net you $2,000 in your spare time. Of course, you have to have a killer portfolio built up to start raking in that kind of cash.
Obviously I’m into this one, mostly because it’s a great way to build your brand and get your name out there. But it’s also a good way to make extra money on the side.
Pick a specialty that’s not already totally saturated and start a niche blog. Write epic content, network, do guest posts, and build an audience. Monetize. Think affiliate links, sponsored content, and ads in the short run, sell a product or service in the long run.
You can also scale in the long run by hiring writers to help you pump out more content and keep your blog growing.
Investing is a solid way to accumulate passive income on the side, but it usually takes years, if not decades, to see any substantial returns.
Common advice is to invest in “growth stocks” while you’re young to take advantage of the stocks appreciating in value.
But dividend-paying stocks are also a solid investment choice. Build up enough investment in dividend-paying stocks over time, and your dividend earnings could be paying the bills.
Slow and steady can win the race.
17. Video editing
Content may be king, but video content is the future.
16. Self-publish a book
Anyone can be the next Ernest Hemingway now. Platforms like Nook and Kindle let you publish whatever you want, and if it sells, they’ll give you a cut. Amazon’s Kindle pays out 70% royalties if your book is priced at $2.99 or below. (30)
Hire a ghostwriter, pump out some cheesy fiction 50 Shades of Gray style, and wait for your movie deal.
15. Online tutoring
If you’re that nerd who always wants to go to pub trivia on a Friday night, you can make decent money offering homework help and tutoring online.
Tutors.com and WyzAnt will pay you to tutor in a subject if you can pass a test proving your expertise. (31) (32) If you want something more passive, eNotes.com pays around $8 every time you write an answer to a high school kid’s study guide question on their forums. (33)
Do you have a degree/are you currently a college student? Chegg will pay you $20 an hour (and they’ll pay you each week) to tutor students from wherever you want on your own schedule. (34) You can work as much or as little as you want.
Dropwhatting? Dropshipping is basically setting up a website with killer SEO that sells a super niche product (think baseball caps or coffee mugs) and then transferring all your customer orders to a super cheap, third party manufacturer (think China, India, etc).
They make it. They ship it. You basically just sit back and watch the orders come in.
However, thanks to Amazon, the gap on this is pretty much constantly closing. Why is someone going to buy from your site when they can get the same thing on Amazon?
It’s still viable for now, but it might not be eventually, so get in while you can.
13. Virtual assistant
Assistants are basically glorified minimum wage coffee boys…unless you do it online.
Virtual assistants work for baller internet entrepreneurs and can do anything from Pinterest management to seeking out new clients invoicing for freelancers. It pays well, especially if you have specialized skills. And it’s one of the fastest growing jobs in the digital/freelancer world. (34)
12. Travel agent
Physical travel agencies may be a thing of the past, but online, they’re thriving. Freelance travel agents can set up a once in a lifetime vacation and reserve everything for you, for free.
They make their money by skimming a commission off the top of the hotels and tours they book. When you’re booking trips for fancy execs to the Four Seasons in Paris for $600+/night, a 10% commission on a 5 night stay is $300, without tours and transportation.
11. Social media specialist
Social media advertising budgets have DOUBLED since 2014, and they’re on track to grow a whopping 26.3% this year.
Start by writing status updates for small businesses for about $1/piece through social media agencies like Emphatic and Writer Access. (35) (36) Once you’ve got it down, learn some analytics, and start marketing yourself directly to clients as a specialist.
10. Online teaching
You don’t even have to be a certified teacher, and you might be able to make more than one, thanks to the internet. Check Skillshare and Udemy if you’re looking for websites that let you create courses and charge people who take them. (37) (38)
My advice: pick something you actually have some expertise in. Teaching is one field you can’t fake… at least not if you want to hit it big.
9. Voice acting
Were you that kid in high school who was in the drama club and walked around singing musicals all the time? Put that voice to use and make some money.
Voice acting is actually something you can do online and make good money, if you have some decent sound equipment. Voices.com, VoiceBunny.com, and Voice123.com all let you make a voice actor profile and apply to freelance jobs. The average gig on Voices.com last year paid $277.32. Not bad. (39) (40) (41)
8. Instagram influencer
This is THE buzzword of 2010s. Making money on Instagram sounds like total BS, but actually, if you have 20k+ followers, companies will actually pay you decent money to post a photo of their product.
If your follower count is in the 6-figure range, you can expect checks in the thousands… for ONE photo. #lit (42)
7. Online agency subcontracting
After you establish your presence online in some freelance skill, scale that skill up by starting an online agency and subcontracting the real work.
You focus on sales. Hire freelancers from sites like Upwork and Fiverr and subcontract your work to them by sending them your client projects.
Send the finished projects back to the clients and profit.
If you’ve got a camera and an eye for a good shot, get snapping.
Choose a nice (high school grads, engaged couples, newborns) and stick with it. You can do commissioned photoshoots, but you can also just sell stock photos online on iStockPhoto and Shutterstock for some passive income. (43) (44)
5. Web design
Good web designers can charge $75/hour and some even manage to rake in $100/hour. (47)
4. Content writer
Content has been king for a while, and it’s not going anywhere. As long as businesses exist online, they’re going to need content writers to keep their blogs fresh.
Get your name out there by guest blogging, climb your way up to contributor status on Huffington Post, Entrepreneur, Forbes, etc. Offer content writing services and watch the cash flow in.
3. SEO consultant
If you’re looking for an internet gold mine, this is definitely one of them. Just look at the uptick in searches on “how to seo”.
A lot of fakers out there though, so get some practice in. Here are the basics: keyword research, blogging, link building. Go.
2. Facebook ads
Looking for a side gig with 3+ million potential clients? Learn how to run a solid Facebook ads campaign and you can take your pick. (49)
Good social media marketing is huge right now, digital marketing specialists even argue that Facebook ads are more effective than Google ads in many ways. (50)
1. Local lead generation
100% real talk, this is one of those side gig unicorns that can easily become a full-time income on a half-time work schedule. But like anything that leads to long-term success and not just 15 minutes fame, you have to put in the work in the beginning.
That being said, providing leads to local businesses is the most consistent way to generate a good amount of income on the side (we’re talking 4-figure checks…to start).
Why? First of all, the market cannot be saturated. What you’re doing is local, so you can replicate it in thousands of different towns and hundreds of industries. The combinations are endless.
Plus, when you provide this service in Springfield, Illinois, competition is cut down to you v. the balding schoolteacher who decided to take a crack at SEO during his summer vacation instead of you v. the entire internet.
The paychecks for one batch of leads are probably more than you’re making in a month at your current wet rag of a day job. There is literally nothing more valuable to local businesses than leads to paying customers. Tell a business owner you’ve got a stack of them and watch his pupils turn into dollar signs.
Don’t believe me? Your loss. Sorry not sorry.