Are you feeling the squeeze from rising costs and stagnant wages? If so, you’re not alone. Trying to make ends meet can be a challenge in today’s economy, where salaries aren’t keeping up with inflation and job security is at an all-time low.
But even if your current salary isn’t cutting it, there are still creative solutions that allow anyone to take control of their financial destiny through side hustles.
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17 Side Hustle Ideas to Boost Your Income
Earning cash on the side is possible, you just have to find the right opportunity for you. This article will cover some of the best side hustle ideas for making extra money.
Discover which ones fit your skill sets and interests best.
1. Sell Printables
Selling printables is a fantastic side business option that offers many ways to make extra money.
The beauty of selling printables is that they are low-cost, high-profit products that you can tailor to various niches.
Plus, you can create most for free using Canva or other editing software. Whether it’s planners, wall art, or checklists, there is a large market for digital downloads that you can print off at home.
With platforms like Etsy or Gumroad, setting up an online store and marketing your products to a worldwide audience is easy.
Plus, there’s no need to worry about inventory or shipping, making it a convenient option for those looking to earn extra income.
The world is moving online, and the gig economy continues to grow by the day. Now, when businesses seek short- and long-term work for important projects, they turn to freelancing sites like Fiverr or Upwork.
If you have experience in a niche such as writing, coding, or graphic design, you can translate those skills into a side hustle through a freelancing platform.
These platforms facilitate reliable, protected connections between hard-working freelancers and prospective clients.
The benefit is that you have the flexibility to choose which jobs are right for you and set your rate and hours.
Sign up on a freelance website to advertise your services, describe your skills, and wait for your first client. Over time, you can build a reputation and win more clients with your services.
And who knows, you could turn this part-time job into a full-time job and enjoy the freedom that comes with it.
3. Pet Sitting
If you love animals, pet sitting might be your perfect side gig that pays weekly. It’s a highly personalized and local job, too, giving you the flexibility to network in your local community and fill a need.
You can provide in-home care for pets while owners are away. The Rover app is a fantastic way to earn extra cash.
American households have over 90 million dogs and 94 million cats; someone must watch them when the owner goes on vacation.
To start your business, put the word out on your social media and let everyone you meet know you offer this service.
If you want, you can even go door to door to promote your services. Just be mindful that some states require certification to pet sit.
You’ll also likely need to invest in food and other necessities for your animal guests.
Still, if you love pets, this is a great way to express your passion for animal care and earn money.
4. Dog Walking
Dog walking is a viable alternative if you don’t have the time or resources to set up a doggie daycare.
Most breeds of dogs need 30-60 minutes of exercise daily, which can be challenging for owners who are away at work or have other commitments.
Like with pet sitting, you can network in your local community to see who could benefit from your services.
Not only do you get the exercise of walking, but you can enjoy the company of man’s best friend while you’re out and about. Again, Rover is a helpful resource to use if you need to locate clients for this side gig.
Chances are you have some valuable skills acquired over the years, either from your career or personal interests. Now is the time to use these skills to make some extra money by helping others.
For example, if you are a nurse, you can use your skills to teach new mothers basic first aid care. Read our guide on the best side hustles for nurses to identify possible roles.
If you are a finance person, you can coach people to help them improve their financial situation.
Take a few minutes, list your skills, and then find people who need your help.
6. Start a Blog
While freelance writing is a great way to earn extra money, you only make money when you produce content.
Running your own website, however, allows for the potential for passive income. This means that after you write content, you can continue getting paid.
So, if you have a knack for sharing information, whether it’s about travel, food, gaming, beauty, fashion, or architecture, blogging is a great way to express yourself to your audience.
The best part about blogging is that it gives you an outlet to be authentic about the things you love and participate in a community that shares your passion.
Blogging can earn you money in two ways:
- Advertisements: You receive a small commission when a reader clicks on or views an ad.
- Affiliate marketing: Whenever a reader clicks on one of your affiliate links, you receive a commission if they purchase through your affiliate partner.
Building a following takes time and effort, but for many bloggers, the opportunity to share their passions is the reward.
Build a big enough following, and you can develop into an influencer across multiple platforms, providing product reviews, entertainment, how-tos, and commentary, allowing you to monetize across multiple sources through ad income, sponsorships, video monetization, and affiliate marketing.
If you’re new to blogging, Bluehost is a helpful resource that helps launch your site and provide basic technical assistance.
Babysitting and childcare are highly profitable services that are constantly in demand. If you’re good with kids, there’s a market for you.
It’s also a very low-cost side hustle that requires very little investment, and gig management websites like Care.com, SitterCity, and UrbanSitter can help you attract clients and manage payments.
Word of mouth is also very powerful when it comes to babysitting. Demonstrate your skills and cement yourself as the go-to sitter over time.
Most areas don’t require certifications, but they can help you gain credibility, as knowing CPR, first aid, and behavior tactics is beneficial.
The American Red Cross offers resources that can help you get certified if this is a side hustle that interests you.
8. Senior Sitting
Of course, senior sitting is the flipside of the coin.
As in-home senior care advances through remote monitoring, more families are trying to keep their loved ones close rather than opting for an assisted living facility.
This opens up opportunities for companions to come alongside while primary caregivers are away from home.
As with babysitting, certification can bolster your reputation and make you a more attractive candidate for a companion.
9. Make Money With Your Body
Here is an often overlooked but lucrative way to make easy money: your body.
Most people know they can donate blood plasma and get paid $50 to $100, but many don’t realize there are more opportunities than just this.
If you recently had a child, you can sell your breastmilk to other mothers or bodybuilders.
Or you could become a surrogate and make $20,000 or more.
Other options include selling pictures of your feet or even your poop.
The bottom line is there are many ways to make money with your body, if you don’t mind being a little creative.
10. Personal Assistant
Professionals in many fields have many day-to-day tasks they must complete. If you enjoy the hustle and bustle of everyday life, you can help them complete their checklist on time.
That might include tasks like taking the kids to school, shopping for groceries, or other errands.
Time management skills are important, and you’ll likely need a vehicle to launch a personal assistant side hustle.
If you’re competent with organizational and administrative tasks, you can expand your assistant career to become an executive assistant, helping company executives manage their time and tasks.
Apps like Taskrabbit and Thumbtack.com can help you set up your payment options.
11. Car Washing
If you love the look of a squeaky clean car, then a car washing service might be your ideal side hustle. You can offer your service to neighbors and businesses.
Some businesses, like taxi services, have fleet vehicles that need washing and cleaning regularly.
Contact some potential candidates in your area to see how you can get started.
You can secure reliable, long-term work if you have competitive rates, timely service, and perform quality service.
To start a car washing side gig, you will likely need, at minimum, the appropriate cleaning tools and a sturdy vacuum.
The more careful you are about making sure your own car is washed, dried, cleaned, and waxed to perfection, the more likely this job will suit you.
12. Odd Jobs
As simple as it seems, there’s always a market for handymen.
If you often find yourself doing odd jobs for friends or applying your technical knowledge in various fields, such as lawn care, home maintenance, or electronics, this may be a profitable side gig for you.
Of course, be mindful of your skillset and experience. Don’t take on tasks in areas you are entirely unfamiliar with.
Getting bonded and insured is not a requirement in most states, but protecting yourself and your clients is a good idea. Besides, it’s a good look on your resume.
If you find yourself fixing everything around the home, your startup costs might be very low since you have most of the tools you’ll need.
Angi, Thumbtack.com, and Taskrabbit can help you find jobs and get paid, but you can also set up your own booking and payment system through platforms like Square.
Alternatively, you can try Mechanical Turk from Amazon.
This will have you do basic odd jobs online for some extra money. The benefit is that you set your own hours, so if you only want to work on weekends, you can.
13. Be Friends with People
Many lonely people out there need a friend, and if you are open and outgoing, you can be someone’s friend and get paid.
There is a broad spectrum when it comes to this side gig. You could be a friend to someone new to your area and show them around town.
Or you could go to a ballgame or a concert if they don’t have someone to go with.
Alternatively, you can be an online friend to people and chat with them.
There is a booming industry if you want to get paid to talk to lonely people, and it pays good money.
If you’re creative, then odds are that you like to share your creativity with the world.
Whether you’re a proficient musician, artist, or athlete, tutors, and personal instructors are always in high demand.
Tutoring is especially relevant to college students, who may benefit from the flexibility that tutoring and coaching offer.
You can market your services directly to parents looking for sessions for their kids.
Moreover, you can readily fit tutoring sessions into your schedule, allowing you to be flexible.
Don’t forget that adult learners can be part of your side gig, and their availability might fit better with your schedule.
Startup costs are virtually nonexistent if you have a musical instrument already, although you might choose to invest in another instrument so that your students can play concurrently.
Platforms like Wyzant, Skooli, and TakeLessons.com create a support network for gig-focused tutors and coaches.
With busy lives, more people than ever are turning to audiobooks as they can listen faster than read.
As a result, there is a demand for people to narrate books. This is where you come in.
If you have a good voice, you can be the person reading aloud. The best place to find work is ACX, owned by Amazon.
But this isn’t the only way to make money with Audible.
Animated television shows, movies, advertisements, and more need voice-over actors. It’s the perfect work-from-home job.
Self-publishing is an excellent outlet for writers to earn royalties, although there are some caveats to consider.
Writing an e-book is a great passion project if you’re a skilled wordsmith and can craft a comprehensive story from start to finish, but you don’t have to be an expert to convert this into a side gig.
If you have creative story ideas, you can hire ghostwriters to complete and polish your work, allowing you to publish to platforms like Kindle Direct, Smashwords, Barnes & Noble, and Lulu.
These platforms will take a royalty from your earnings, and marketing costs can increase the initial investment required to get into self-publishing.
Nevertheless, this side gig can be quite profitable in the long run, netting you a royalty every time someone purchases your book.
It’s no secret that YouTube can be profitable for people who create consistent, entertaining content.
You might not have realized that there’s a YouTube audience for your niche. If you have expertise or opinions to share, bring your personality to bear and start a YouTube channel.
You can start earning once you reach 1,000 subscribers and average over 4,000 video watch hours per year.
Of course, reaching this point may take time, but it’s a field that rewards consistency and passion. YouTube is 100 percent free to join, and you can upload as many videos as you like.
If you have a decent camera, such as on your smartphone, you can get started right from home.
Moreover, while getting started, you can edit your videos with free editing apps like iMovie, Canva, Loom, and AdobeSpark.
Creating short, cutting-edge entertainment like dances, how-tos, sketches, commentary, and more through Facebook, TikTok, and Instagram can earn you money if your videos go viral.
If you’re on social media often and keep up with the latest trends, you can leverage your creativity to earn additional money.
There are endless possibilities to make extra cash. These side hustle ideas are the tip of the iceberg.
Because of this, you should take some time to think about what you enjoy doing and see if there is a way to profit from it. Chances are good that you can.
What are your top ways to make money on the side?
About the author: Jon is the founder of MoneySmartGuides, which helps people dig out of debt and start building wealth to achieve their dreams. He has over 15 years of experience in the financial services industry and 20 years of investing in the stock market. He has both his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Finance, is FINRA Series 65 licensed, and has a Certificate in Financial Planning.He also is the founder of Unfinished Success, a personal development website whose goal is to help you be the best you.
I’m John Schmoll, a former stockbroker, MBA-grad, published finance writer, and founder of Frugal Rules.
As a veteran of the financial services industry, I’ve worked as a mutual fund administrator, banker, and stockbroker and was Series 7 and 63-licensed, but I left all that behind in 2012 to help people learn how to manage their money.
My goal is to help you gain the knowledge you need to become financially independent with personally-tested financial tools and money-saving solutions.