Today “side-hustles” are a growing norm. It’s ubiquitous and with a generation where social media has propagated a certain standard of what a perfect Instagram lifestyle is and independence the new expectation, we’ve decided to present you with 15 creative ways to make money that you can easily excel at and use to save or splurge a little (maybe a lot).
Gone are the days where saving money and cutting back expenses were the only solid solution to becoming financially free. With the rapid growth of technology and the entrepreneurial spirit spreading like wildfire, picking up freelance work or a part-time job that provides a flexible schedule, is a great addition to living financially sound. As The Everygirl stated, “adding more money to your bottom line will not only give you the financial freedom you seek, it will also allow you the freedom to maintain your current lifestyle.”
So without further adieu, here are 15 creative ways to make extra money to compliment your day job:
1. Freelance and Sell Your Skills
Remember how you used to write for the school paper or that people (friends and strangers alike) complimented you on your artistic skills? Well, those qualities can be great assets that actually produces monetary value. Websites like Task Rabbit, Thumbtack, and Upwork are perfect platforms to utilize to sell your skills. There are a variety of freelance contracts that you can agree to that range from graphic design to ghostwriting and copyediting to even remote customer service work or becoming a virtual assistant. Bonus: For Upwork, you can set up your hourly rate and start building a clientele and an online portfolio. We use this ourselves and can attest to their legitimacy in the work available and actually getting paid!
2. Teach A Class Online
To compliment freelancing, why not put your knowledge and expertise to another level? If you are extremely good at something, try teaching a class online and helping those who seek to become an expert in the same craft and field as you are. Whether you are toying with the idea of becoming a teacher (in any field or in education) or a seasoned professor with loads of experience in educating masses, teaching online is a very lucrative side gig that generates a decent amount of passive income. You can opt out of YouTube and go a more professional route with sites like Udemy or Skillshare. You can start out with free videos to garner trust and eventually transition into paid classes…or jump straight into a series of videos that are worth paying for!
3. Tap into Your Inner Salesman
Now we’re not typically a big fan of multi-level marketing but there are a few that we recommend. Before we go further, we do want to preface that it’s extremely important to be educated in the field of what you are jumping into and having integrity alongside passion. Like any other industry, you want to be completely prepared and have done your due diligence before trying to be a salesman. There is nothing more vexing than being pushy and claiming yourself to be an expert after attending one seminar compared to others who have a career in that field (i.e. cosmetics to a professional makeup artist or diet schemes to a nutritionist). Now with that disclaimer, companies like Mary Kay, Rodan+Fields, Stella & Dot, Chloe + Isabel, Cabi, and Carlisle are a few we actually like. Being a sales rep for a direct selling company can be a lucrative “side-hustle” that can eventually turn into a full-time job with a great paycheck.
4. Sell Your Clothing
In our lifetime, we all have stepped into a consignment store (mine was on Melrose three years ago) to find a perfect Burberry coat in mint condition and had no choice but to purchase it at a fraction of the original price. Splush! (Insert Archer—well Pam’s voice in here). The point is, rummage through your closet—there’s bound to be a few articles of clothing with the tag still on that have settled dust for the last few seasons—and sell them. Go to your local consignment store or get on Poshmark, Tradesy, or ThredUp. This is a great way to accumulate some cash from clothing that is just taking up space in your closet. Besides, it’s always good to purge your closet to not only update and make room, but to know exactly what you have and don’t have.
5. Find and Resell or Buy and Upsell
We actually got this little fun tip from The Everygirl! Craigslist is a goldmine when it comes to finding free items and scoring big. Look for people who are selling old furniture that you can refurbish and resell. Sometimes there will be listings indicating that homeowners are just trying to get rid of some of their stuff at no cost because they are leaving and on a tight deadline. Another great alternative is to go to Goodwill or spend your Friday or Saturday mornings going to garage sales and upselling items that are still in good condition. Gary Vaynerchuk talks about this. It may get tedious at times trying to find valuable things to resell or upsell but this scavenger hunt can be pretty profitable if tackled correctly.
6. Become a Mystery Shopper
It’s a pretty well-known gig but there is still some skepticism surrounding it. For those who are still wondering exactly what the purpose of the mystery shopper is, it’s essentially helping companies improve customer experiences and measure quality of service. You can sign up with companies like Bestmark or Market Force for free to get started. There are different methods of payments including direct deposit or a check in the mail with occasional reimbursements of purchases.
7. Offer Your Honest Opinion
Although we were ingrained with the notion to “mind-your-own” business and to keep our opinions to ourselves if we have nothing nice to say, you can actually make honest money for providing your opinion. Marketers are always on the lookout on how to increase customer satisfaction and retention while finding ways to gain new ones. Companies conduct focus groups and surveys and pay willing participants to share their thoughts. If you’re the type that likes to find innovative ways to help companies improve with a little bit of spare time and get paid while doing so, this one’s for you.
8. Be a Sitter
Babysitter, dog sitter, cat sitter, or house sitter. Either become all of them or just one of them, being a sitter is another job you can sign-up for that can earn you a nice little cushion. Busy working parents sometimes need a date night and would love to find a great babysitter that they can trust and are willing to pay to ensure their kids are taken care of while they are away. On the same note, pets are also family and people are willing to pay the right person to watch them either for a few hours or overnight when they are on a trip. Trust us, those overnights can be quite costly and you can definitely make a sweet little payday to hang out with a cute furry friend. Bonus: If you love dogs, become a dog walker! It’s a great way to get a little exercise and have a cute companion to keep you company. Check out Rover to sign-up as a dog walker and start making new furry friends or Care.com to upload your credentials as a babysitter and go through a reliable source that parents trust.
9. Write an Ebook
Ever thought about being an author? Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing program makes it a lot easier now more than ever to publish your very own Ebook at very little cost. It’s easy and cost nothing to open an account and you can use sites like Canva or if you’re creative, make your own ebook cover with InDesign to compliment your story. Note: You don’t have to create a 500 page novel to become successful and generate passive income from this method. There are several authors who have created short 120 pages of non-fiction “How-To” guide books that have made over $2,000 on the first one they published. Just check out how The Penny Hoarder did it! Writing an ebook that is informative and interesting that can generate passive income will be a nice touch to your bank account. Just make sure you know what you’re talking about and make sure you market it well so people know it’s out there to purchase.
10. Sell Your Photos
Does your Instagram feed garner praise or your uploaded Facebook photos receive a lot of likes and compliments for how beautiful they are? Or maybe you just have a keen eye for creativity and work magic behind a camera. In that case, try selling your photos online to companies like Shutterstock or Adobe. They typically pay you based on how many downloads there are. This means you get a percentage every time your picture is downloaded. It’s not bad for a great snap!
11. Become a Marketing Affiliate
Marketing affiliates can generate a large amount of income if you go about it correctly. For those who are not familiar with what marketing affiliates are, in short, it is “a way of making money online whereby you as a publisher are rewarded for helping a business by promoting their product, service or site.” (ProBlogger) There are several legitimate marketing affiliate programs out there that you can use like Commission Junction/CJ, ShopStyle Collective, Rakuten/Linkshare, and Amazon. If you are a blogger, you can utilize banners and deeplinking or if you just utilize social media accounts like Facebook or Pinterest, you can just use the specified links they generate that give you credit for PPC (pay per clicks) or commission.
12. Drive for Uber or Lyft
Love driving and meeting new people? Be a Lyft or Uber driver. It’s a great way to not only help keep others safe after a fun night of drinking but make money while doing so. It can also be a pretty profitable part-time job. Plus, you get to meet some rather interesting people and have some very fascinating conversations.
13. Rent Out a Room or Your Entire House
Another great opportunity to make additional income that is quite profitable is to rent out a spare bedroom in your house (or loft, townhouse, or condo)…maybe your entire home if that is an option. Utilize reputable companies like Airbnb to put your home up to generate some cash. If you’re comfortable enough, consider Craigslist as well. This is a great way to make money while you are out traveling and living up adventures or putting that spare bedroom to use that is collecting dust and being used as storage. It may sound a bit risky, but don’t there are security measures in place to mitigate risks and ensure you aren’t scammed.
14. Open a Brokerage Account and Start Investing
This may be a bit more of a traditional route, but is a great way to start making money that can accumulate significantly over time. Although investing can be quite risky as you can never really predict the stock market, you can take precautionary methods by learning how to properly invest. There are different risk levels and you can speak to brokers and financial consultants to guide you. Bonus: Some brokerage firms offer a bonus when opening a brand new account including a certain amount of free trades for an initial amount being deposited. Charles Schwab is a great brokerage firm that has no account opening fees and has a low minimum.
15. Start Your Own Blog
Starting your own blog can take a lot of work. However, if you find something you’re passionate about enough to blog about it on a consistent basis, it can be a very profitable way to make money while tapping into your creative side. You can focus your niche on any industry from fashion to beauty to photography to food to anything that you would like. Head over to our tutorial to get started: HOW TO START A BLOG WITH WORDPRESS ON BLUEHOST. This can open up a slew of opportunities and eventually become a full-time business.
We hope that you found these 15 creative ways to make money helpful and inspire you to try some new side-hustle gigs. If you have any other suggestions, leave a comment below! We’d love to know and explore other options.
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