Side hustle culture has taken off over the last two decades, although the term has actually been used since the middle of the 20th century.
A side hustle is a money-making activity that is carried out in addition to a full-time job, usually with a person’s interests or skills at the center of the “hustle”.
Side hustles are valued at over 2 trillion dollars in the United States financial market (as of 2023). However, the question remains: Is investing time and energy into cultivating a side hustle really worth it?
In this article, your side hustle queries will be answered!
We’ll discover various side hustles, such as those within digital, physical, and service, and financial categories. Additionally, you’ll find the best tips for starting your side hustle journey on the right foot.
- The Best Side Hustle Ideas For 2023: At A Glance
- Online Side Hustles
- In-Person Side Hustle Opportunities
- Service-Based Side Hustles
- Investment and Passive Income Side Hustles
- Best Tips for Starting a Successful Side Hustle
- 1. Choose a side hustle aligned with your skills or interests
- 2. Research the market and competition thoroughly
- 3. Create a clear business plan and set achievable goals
- 4. Manage your time effectively to balance with your main job
- 5. Start small and gradually scale as you gain experience
- 6. Build a strong online presence and network
- 7. Have good time management
The Best Side Hustle Ideas For 2023: At A Glance
An overview of our suggestions below.
Online Side Hustles
- Become a Virtual Assistant
- Create an Online Course
- Selling Digital Products
- Affiliate Marketing
- Content Creation
- Give Feedback on Products and Services
In-Person Side Hustles
- Charge Rental Scooters
- Crafts and Handmade Goods
- Gardening and Farming
Service-Based Side Hustles
- Become a Rideshare Driver
- Pet Sitting and Dog Walking
- Deliver Food and Groceries
- Home or Room Renting
- House Cleaning or Organizing
Investment and Passive Income Side Hustles
- Real Estate
- Stock and Cryptocurrency Trading
- Peer-to-Peer Lending
- Create an App or Software
Online Side Hustles
Let’s first start off with side hustles and part-time job opportunities you can do online. You can do all of these jobs from the comfort of your own home without ever needing to leave.
Freelancing is described as independent contracting on a project-to-project basis. Freelancing is a fantastic side hustle that can utilize your skills in writing, programming, bookkeeping, and more.
Freelancing can often be done remotely, which is especially beneficial to parents, travelers, and homebodies!
Online freelance jobs are available to people of nearly every skill set. Websites like Upwork, Fiverr, and Guru offer endless freelance jobs for you to browse through and find the perfect fit for you.
- If you think you’d be a great freelance writer, then there are plenty of freelance writing opportunities.
- If you think you’re a social media guru, then you can apply to be a social media manager.
- And if you think you have an eye for detail and grammar, then there’s always freelance editing and proofreading jobs.
Make sure you look through some of these freelance sites because you never know what type of jobs and skills companies are looking for.
2. Become a Virtual Assistant
If you’re an organized and versatile worker, then being a virtual assistant could help you make good money from your laptop.
Virtual assistants are like personal assistants that help small business owners complete tasks to keep their business up and running.
Many online businesses are bootstrapped and employ contract employees to complete some of the more time-consuming tasks.
This could be tasks like handling customer service, managing social media accounts, or being in charge of payroll.
Your responsibilities will depend on each job, but no matter what, you’ll get paid to help people and businesses in your spare time.
3. Create an Online Course
Creating your own online course is a lucrative way to make more money online.
If you consider yourself an expert in a certain area and think you know how to convey this information to others, then an online course could help you earn money on the side.
There are millions of online courses out there, so it will be up to you to create something that’s unique and useful to people.
The best part is that once you have your course up and running, there is very little you have to do after that.
By creating one course, you could potentially make money from it for years to come.
4. Selling Digital Products
There are many courses, books, templates, and other digital materials out there that can serve as your side hustle. Lots of people sell planner PDFs, crafting how-to’s, and more on websites like Etsy.
If you peg yourself as the creative or artsy type, then starting an Etsy store might be in the cards for you.
While creating products to sell online might take up quite a bit of time, you could potentially make a hefty profit if people love your products.
Etsy is an e-commerce platform where you can sell your handmade and crafted goods online to customers.
Hundreds of thousands of people have made money with Etsy by selling anything from wedding stationery to jewelry to custom T-shirts.
Take a look at Etsy’s site to see if any ideas jump off the page.
You never know what you’re capable of creating to make extra income on the side.
You can blog about nearly anything you’d like, however, the tip we’ll give you is to write content that is actually useful to readers.
You shouldn’t just ramble about your daily happenings, because this likely won’t get you anywhere.
Instead, you should find something that you’re passionate about and focus on a certain topic, like cosmetics for college students, personal training tips, or a blog for coffee drinkers.
Once you start publishing great content and generating traffic to your blog, you can begin monetizing through affiliate marketing or online advertising.
And just like that, you have a side business that can help increase your monthly cash flow.
6. Affiliate Marketing
Affiliate marketing is an extension of content creation. People who have a large following on social media might be asked to promote a product or service from a brand in exchange for free merchandise or a paycheck.
This side hustle grows relative to your social media prowess. If you find yourself with lots of followers, you may consider trying affiliate marketing with brands that you truly love.
But, beware: Multi-level marketing schemes can posture themselves as affiliate marketing opportunities. Always investigate the opportunity properly before you agree to it!
7. Content Creation
If you’re a writer, photographer, or videographer, you may want to consider creating content.
The average person spends 400 minutes or more on the internet daily, which could translate into a side hustle for the right creative person.
Content creation can occur on any social media site (TikTok, Instagram, etc.) or on a website of your own.
The world is increasing in connectedness; if you have a special interest or skill that needs showcasing, build your own digital community and make money with content creation!
8. Online Tutoring or Coaching
College students and mentors, listen up! If you’ve been studying for an extended period of time, you might want to think about signing up for online tutoring.
Oftentimes, you can make your own hours and tutor in subjects that you naturally excel in.
Additionally, mentors can provide coaching opportunities for people in all areas, such as business, tech, trading, and more.
7. Give Feedback on Products and Services
It almost sounds too good to be true, but hear us out.
You can get paid to give your opinion on everyday products and services. There are several ways you can go about making money by giving your feedback.
One way is by mystery shopping.
A mystery shopper anonymously visits a store, calls customer service lines, or visits websites and provides a third-party research company with a detailed account of their customer experience.
Another way is by responding to online surveys regarding the products you’ve used.
This could apply to household goods, foods, or clothing. You may even be sent free products in the mail for you to try out and provide feedback.
Lastly, you can join local focus groups in your area or online.
Focus groups help brands develop their products and brand messaging to consumers. You could join a focus group for a few hours, give your opinion, and walk away with a couple of hundred dollars.
Some reputable service you can look into include Swagbucks, Respondent, and Survey Junkie. All of these opportunities will either pay you in cash, a PayPal money transfer, or through gift cards to your favorite stores.
In-Person Side Hustle Opportunities
Now that we’ve covered a number of online opportunities, let’s go over some in-person side hustles you can do if you feel like getting out of the house.
1. Charge Rental Scooters
There’s a pretty good chance you’ve seen electric scooters zipping around your campus or downtown area.
What you might not have thought about is getting paid to charge all of these electric scooters. Companies like Lime and Bird have thousands of scooters in major cities and campuses all across the United States.
It would be incredibly expensive and time-consuming for these companies to collect and charge these scooters themselves. Instead, they let people like you collect these scooters and charge them overnight in your home.
After you’re finished charging the scooter, you’ll return them to the streets and receive payment for your efforts.
2. Crafts and Handmade Goods
Many creators make handcrafted goods (like jewelry, paintings, furniture, etc.). If you’re very artsy, or if you want to start making handmade items as your side hustle, it can be very lucrative.
Just like people flip houses, furniture can also be flipped!
If you go to your local thrift or discount store, you may find an old (but beautiful) item that – with some effort – can become a more expensive item.
Also, people can ask you to restore their furniture, art, and other items and pay you for your labor. This will require some more experience but can be a consistent stream of income.
4. Gardening and Farming
Farmer’s markets are very popular nowadays, and those with a green thumb should take advantage. Selling your fresh fruits and vegetables at a farmer’s market (or just to locals in your area) is a rewarding side hustle.
Additionally, if the perishability of your stock is a concern, you could turn your produce into long shelf-life foods (nut butters, jams, spices) and ship them to people across the country.
Service-Based Side Hustles
The original gig working concept — rideshare driving — is still an excellent way to make money when it’s most convenient for you.
By picking up passengers around your city, you can make an extra buck or two as a chauffeur.
Rideshare drivers get to set their own hours, work whenever they want, and be their own boss. What’s not to like about that?
2. Pet Sitting and Dog Walking
Pet sitting and dog walking are excellent ways to make extra money in your free time, especially if you’re an animal lover. Instead of sitting on the couch, you could help others with their pet duties.
There are plenty of people out there who are too busy to walk their dogs every day or need someone to look after their pet while they’re away on vacation.
Also, providing a service like pet sitting for those on vacation can allow pet owners to fully enjoy their vacation while a trusted person takes care of their furry friend.
3. Start Babysitting
Babysitting is the first job that many people have.The nice part is that it doesn’t need to stop in your adolescent years.
Traditionally babysitting jobs were granted by word of mouth through a family member, a friend, or a family in your neighborhood.
But what if you’re hitting dead ends trying to find a babysitting gig? Nowadays you don’t have to worry about tapping into your immediate network.
Instead, you can sign up for a service like Care.com to find available babysitting jobs in your area.
4. Deliver Food and Groceries
If you can take advantage of tip culture, you should! Delivering food for Uber or Doordash is quick and easy.
Food and grocery delivery is on the rise, especially around college campuses. This is a prime opportunity for you to make a side income bringing food to hungry customers.
The majority of delivery companies focus on delivering take-out orders from restaurants.
Also, you’ll get bonus points (tips) if you deliver across long distances or through bad weather. This is a job that can be done anywhere, at all hours of the day.
If you enjoy your line of work and it happens to be in tech, business, finance, engineering, or other related fields, you might want to consider consulting.
Consulting employs your current professional skill set to form an educated opinion of an entity, product, plan, or anything else that could warrant critique in a business.
6. Home or Room Renting
If you own a property or even a spare room, you can place an ad for a tenant and collect rent!
Although the vetting process can be tedious, this is an easy way to make passive income if you find the right tenant.
7. House Cleaning or Organizing
Are you a super clean and organized person? Lots of people are not, but you can help them by starting a side hustle.
Although establishing a client base might be tough at first, most people do not change cleaning professionals until absolutely necessary.
Also, this goes beyond personal spaces. Offices, daycares, stores, and other facilities need cleaners!
Investment and Passive Income Side Hustles
1. Real Estate
Have you thought about buying and selling real estate? Real estate side hustles can provide you with passive income, but this side hustle may require money upfront before you begin to see a return on your investment.
Some people choose to get their real estate license in their state, which can also serve as a side hustle.
2. Stock and Cryptocurrency Trading
Stock and cryptocurrency trading are excellent choices for financially motivated people who want to take charge of their money.
However, these markets are volatile and require a lot of training before entering – so be cautious!
3. Peer-to-Peer Lending
Peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms allow you to invest in individuals or businesses while generating passive income on the investment.
If you see a local business looking for a loan, you may want to consider this side gig.
4. Create an App or Software
Having a background in programming and/or tech gives you a massive advantage in the side hustle game, but also in professional environments as a whole. Utilize your talents and build the next best app!
Or, if you’re disinterested in app building, you can create software that companies (or individuals) find useful. Successful software development or app deployment could add tremendous value to your resume.
Best Tips for Starting a Successful Side Hustle
1. Choose a side hustle aligned with your skills or interests
This is especially important if you don’t like your main job. You will want to fill your non-main job hours with activities that excite you or that make you feel fulfilled.
Although this question may seem obvious, ask yourself: What am I interested in, and which of my interests are truly in alignment with who I am?
2. Research the market and competition thoroughly
Who is your target market? What are they looking for? What are they willing to spend?
These are just a few of the questions that should be swirling around in your mind. Get to know your market through and through.
3. Create a clear business plan and set achievable goals
In any project or goal that you have in mind, you should set two types of goals: short-term and long-term.
Your short-term goals should reflect your nearest, attainable desires for your business, and your long-term goals might incorporate some dreaming.
It is difficult to plan too far in advance, but seeing what you’re looking to accomplish might inspire you to make successful decisions.
4. Manage your time effectively to balance with your main job
You don’t want your side hustle to infringe on your main source of income, so scale back when needed to ensure that you’re putting in 100% with your main job.
This is especially true if you are stacking side hustles, or working more than one at the same time.
5. Start small and gradually scale as you gain experience
Starting a side hustle is exciting – but temper that excitement in the beginning!
You’ll want to know if this new venture is something that you can be consistent with, that you like doing it, and that it is worth your time. As you gain experience, you can devote more energy to your side hustle.
6. Build a strong online presence and network
No matter your side hustle, establishing yourself online will broaden your potential client pool and might turn into job opportunities down the line.
7. Have good time management
Taking on the responsibility of a side hustle also means adding more to-dos to your schedule.
Make a master list, including all to-do’s from the side hustle, main job, and other responsibilities.
I like to add emphasis to items that are of more importance than others. Then, schedule your day from the moment you wake up until you sleep.
This may seem like overkill, but you can also schedule time to relax if you want! Anyone thinking about adding a side hustle to their schedule is likely a very driven person who will benefit from some R&R from time to time.
The sources we reviewed to write this article.