A side hustle is a great way to supplement your income by utilizing your skills or knowledge. There are many types of side hustles, and the greatest one for you is determined by your interests, talents, and lifestyle.
Side hustles are often a great starting point for starting up your own business. They provide a way to test out your business idea with limited investment and risk. And, if successful, can lead to a full-time income stream.
Many startups start out as a side hustle before becoming a full-time business. So, if you’ve got an entrepreneurial spirit, a side hustle can be a great way to get your business started.
Here are a few LA Startups that started out as a side hustle:
The Dollar Shave Club: Founder Michael Dubin started The Dollar Shave Club as a side hustle while working at a tech startup. He created a simple video explaining the concept and launched the company in 2011. Today, The Dollar Shave Club is a multi-million dollar business with over 3 million members.
Nasty Gal: Founder Sophia Amoruso started Nasty Gal as a side hustle while working as a receptionist. She started by selling vintage clothes on eBay and launched the company in 2006. Today, Nasty Gal is a multi-million dollar business with over 200 employees.
Honey: George Ruan and Ryan Hudson started Honey as a Chrome plugin to help online shoppers save money by finding coupons and deals. The company was founded in 2012 and has since grown to a team of over 100 employees. It was acquired by PayPal north of $4 Billion dollars late 2019.
There are many other examples of successful businesses that started out as a side hustle. If you have an idea for a business, don’t be afraid to try it out as a side hustle. You never know where it might lead!
What Is A Side Hustle?
A side hustle (job) is essentially any job that you take on outside of your normal 9-5 work hours. It can be anything from driving for Uber to selling handmade jewelry on Etsy. The best side hustles are those that make you money without requiring a lot of time or effort.
Is A Side Hustle Worth It?
The answer to this question is a resounding YES! Taking on a side hustle can supplement your income and help you reach your financial goals faster. It can also be a great way to explore new interests and hobbies, without having to commit to them full-time.
However, not all side hustles are profitable, and not every opportunity is suitable for everyone. If you’re looking to start a new business or create a side hustle in the near future, consider these suggestions before making a decision.
Pick A Side Hustle That Suits Your Skills
One of the best ways to guarantee profitability from your side hustle is to choose an opportunity that plays to your strengths. If you’re good with numbers, for example, consider becoming a freelance bookkeeper or working as a consultant for small businesses.
If you’re a people person, on the other hand, you might want to think about becoming a party planner, starting a pet-sitting business, or working as a Virtual Assistant. There are endless possibilities when it comes to choosing a side hustle, so make sure to pick one that best suits your skills and interests.
36 Profitable Side Hustle Ideas
There are endless possibilities when it comes to finding a profitable side hustle. To help you get started, we’ve compiled a list of 36 of the best side hustle ideas that you can start today.
1. Offer Your Services on Fiverr
Fiverr helped give birth to the Gig Economy. Although services start out at $5, some Fiverr sellers are earning six-figure-plus revenues annually. Fiver has about 200 categories of services that they offer to people with skills, and to companies in need of those skills.
This platform is the perfect side hustle to get started. You can start with writing, making logos, editing videos, and offering tutorials on a wide variety of subjects. If you know how to do something well and you do it for fun, you can make enough money on it in your free time. In fact, some freelancers here earn in the 6 figures side hustling.
2. Be a Winning Logo Designer on 99Designs
Fiverr isn’t the only platform you have to use if you specialize in logo design. If you like to play around with programs such as Illustrator and Photoshop, you can get on 99Designs to prove your freelancing skills. Here, the companies don’t hire you on blind faith. Instead, your logo must first be chosen as the winning design for you to get paid.
3. Video Editor
Consumers want more videos from their favorite companies. This implies that businesses need more video producers. Learn how to create your own videos in Adobe Premiere Pro CC by mastering the art of Adobe Creative Cloud membership.
4. Podcast Editor
Podcast is popular and growing. If you have experience editing audio, start offering your services to podcast creators. You can work with clients online or in person.
5. Flip NFTs
You can flip NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, for a profit. NFTs are digital assets that can be bought, sold, and traded. They’re unique and have value because they’re scarce. To get started, you’ll need to create an account on an NFT marketplace like OpenSea.
6. Write Resumes
If you’re already on LinkedIn, you can use that website (and other similar platforms) to advertise your resume-writing services. You will have to do a few ones for free at first, but if your clients get hired then you can get rave reviews and actual paying customers.
7. Sell Your Clutter on Craigslist or eBay
You may have heard about de-cluttering. It’s about making your room (and maybe even your whole house) neater by getting rid of stuff you don’t even need. It makes for a tidier home that can actually reduce your stress as a result.
It can even get you a bit of money when you sell these old items. You can put up classic toys, used furniture, and appliances that you no longer use. Take a great photo of the item and sell it. If you’re great at selling stuff, you can even offer your selling services to family and friends who have lots of junk and sell them for a commission.
8. Rent a Room on Airbnb
This is a great option if you live in a city or town where tourists like to visit. You offer them a homier place to stay in, plus they get to see a more authentic glimpse of what life really is like in where you live. They save money on the deal, and you get to pocket some money too.
9. Be a Local Tour Guide
If you’re renting a room on Airbnb, then guiding them around the town can get you some more extra money. But you can also offer these services to the other tourists in town. You can get a nice group going if you have specialized knowledge regarding where the best (or cheapest) restaurants are, where the best coffee is served, or where books are sold. One good way of doing this is to offer your services for free, but you tell them that you accept tips and donations. This way gets you more tourists, and some of them can be very generous especially if they have a great time.
10. Manage Ads on Instagram or TikTok
Manage ads for a business’s Instagram or TikTok account. This is a great way to make some extra money if you’re already active on social media. You can work with businesses in your area or reach out to businesses online.
11. Be a House Sitter
Some rich people have second real estate that they don’t really use until the holiday season or during the summer. You can be a house sitter for one of these people so they know that their home won’t be ransacked or catch fire while they’re away. You can also house-sit for people who are going on vacation, which requires a very little skill set. Try to offer your services at websites like Care.com and HouseSitter.com.
12. Drive for Uber or Lyft
Plenty of people already drive for these ride-hailing services, and now so can you. If you have a car, then you’re good to go. You set your own hours, simply by setting a button on an app that says whether you’re available for rides or not.
13. Provide Answers on JustAnswer
JustAnswer and other similar websites can pay you to answer professional questions. All you need is to prove you’re a real expert by verifying your credentials and passing a rigorous application process. Subject matters include the law, finance and taxes, medicine (human and vet), computers and software, and electronics. Even somewhat uncommon topics can have questions answered, such as clock repair, parenting, firearms, and dream interpretation.
14. Sell Your Old Smartphones on Gazelle
The Gazelle website specializes in buying old smartphones and then selling them to customers looking for a discount. They can even buy non-working phones from you, even the ones with smashed screens. Quite a few people have old smartphones just lying around, and now you have a place to throw them off that can earn you a few bucks instead.
15. Deliver Food for PostMates
The PostMates services provide eateries and other similar establishments a way for them to deliver their goods. As a PostMates driver, you can then deliver food, drinks, and even groceries. The pay isn’t much, but the bulk of the income is actually from the tips you receive. You can do the same at DoorDash.
16. Start an Etsy Shop
If you’re crafty or have unique products to sell, opening an Etsy shop can be a great way to earn some extra income. You can sell anything from handmade goods to vintage items, and with over 35 million active buyers on the site, there’s sure to be someone interested in what you have to offer.
17. Be a Tutor on Zoom
Nowadays, you don’t need to actually visit home to tutor someone on topics you’re an expert on. Instead, you can teach people over the internet using a home camera on Zoom. You can be in the US and teach stuff to people in the UK.
18. Hold a Garage Sale
If you have too much to sell and you don’t want to bother selling online, you can sell your stuff the old-fashioned way. Just hold a garage sale. You can still advertise on Craigslist to let people know about it, and you can spread the word via Facebook and other social media services. You can sell old magazines, books, toys, clothes—just about anything.
19. Teach a Language
It’s great if you know a second language as you can teach that language and get paid for it. In the US, you can find people interested in various languages and who may pay you to teach them the language you know.
Even if you only speak English, it’s possible to earn money from teaching if you’re backpacking your way through countries where English isn’t normally spoken. Here are a few online courses places you can try these side gigs: Udemy, SkillShare, and UpWork.
20. Give Music Lessons
Do you know how to play a musical instrument? You can turn that knowledge into some easy pocket money by teaching others how to play the guitar, piano, or any other instrument. Record yourself playing your musical instrument, and use that as an advertisement as you tell others about your music lessons on social networking sites like Facebook. You can also give lessons on TakeLessons.com. TakeLessons is an ed-tech company with a robust, engaging learning platform and community for lifelong learning.
21. Give Driving Lessons
If you know how to drive, then you might want to get a license as a driving instructor. Your skills may be in great demand especially if you’re a master at driving cars with manual transmission. You can use websites such as Indeed.com where part-time driving instructor jobs are offered. You can use facetime for video lessons.
22. Do Small Jobs on Mechanical Turk
Companies use Mechanical Turk to provide immediate and temporary work services, and you can be part of the teams that provide those services. These companies are then saved from having to hire a large temporary workforce, while you can do interesting jobs such as participate in surveys or categorize images and products.
23. Be a Blogger, Publish a Blog
Blogging will take time, but then you can start a blog that can help you pass the time. Your blog can be about a topic that you’re passionate about, and your posts can offer insights and information you’ve gathered over the years. Once you’ve developed a loyal following, you can earn income through advertisements and by selling stuff on your blog for commission.
24. Write an eBook
Do you like to write fanfiction? If you do, then you can write a novel-length story based on a favorite fandom. Once you’re done using the characters of your favorite TV shows and novels, just change names and settings so you end up with an entirely original story. This is how 50 Shades of Grey came about—it started out as Twilight fanfiction.
25. Be a Babysitter
This is a classic service, babysitting, that never really goes out of fashion. It’s just that today you can use websites such as SitterCity or Care.com to let people know about your babysitter service. If you provide a terrific experience for kids and their parents, you’ll get great ratings for your services and you’ll become even more popular with potential clients.
26. Be a Dog Walker
In the old days, people offered babysitter services. Now you can just offer dog walking services instead of for the busy people in your neighborhood. Just print up a few pamphlets offering your services to the dog owners in your area, and slip these pamphlets in their mailboxes. Or, better yet, sign-up at Rover.com.
27. Wash Cars
This does require a small investment, but it’s a side job you could enjoy when you have spare time. This is another classic service that probably will always be in demand. This is especially true when you live near wealthy people who have nice cars but don’t have the time or the inclination to clean the vehicles themselves. You can wash and detail the cars for them and get paid nicely. You can use social networking sites to advertise your services, or you can just hand out fliers.
28. Create YouTube Videos for Affiliate Marketing
This approach combines 2 difficult money-generating schemes into one that can be much more successful. It’s extremely difficult to earn money through ads on YouTube videos alone. You might get 2 or 3 dollars for every 1,000 views. Using blogs for affiliate marketing where you direct people to sites that sell stuff (and then you get a commission) doesn’t work all that often either. But you can use videos more effectively for affiliate marketing.
29. Join Marketing Focus Groups
This is one way of earning money without any real skill needed. In fact, it helps if you’re just an average person because marketing companies want to know how people like to respond to their advertisements, services, and products. This is safer than participating in drug trials since you won’t have to risk suffering weird side effects.
30. Be a Personal Shopper
If you love to shop except you don’t really have the money for it, this can be a dream job. You can just instead shop for other people using their money. This works very well for you if you live near an affluent neighborhood. You can use social media networks to advertise your services or go with online resources like ThumbTack where rich people go to look for personal shoppers.
31. Be a Personal Trainer
If you’ve successfully lost weight or gained muscles, you can turn that experience and knowledge you gained into a money-generating scheme. You can create workout routines and schedules, while you also compose a meal plan for each day. People can see your fit form and realize that you actually do know what you’re talking about.
32. Be a Virtual Assistant
Plenty of professionals these days are looking for virtual assistants. Your job will probably be about sparing them from tedious administrative duties, like dealing with social media, answering routine emails, making travel arrangements, and scheduling meetings. You do need to know how to use Zoom for this to work, and you need to have a reliable Internet connection. Check out Zirtual.
33. Remote Talent Recruiting
Recruiters can make a lot of money, but they also put in a lot of hours. You could take on the role of a remote recruiter and get paid to find the best talent for companies all over the world. You’ll need to be good at using social media and have excellent communication skills. Check out FlexJobs for remote recruiting opportunities.
34. Do Voiceovers
With a decent microphone, some editing software, and a quiet room, you can start doing voiceovers for videos, podcasts, and other digital products. This is a great way to make some extra cash if you have a nice speaking voice. You can also do this as part of your work-from-home job if your company needs someone to do voiceovers for their products or services.
35. Take on Freelance Projects
If you’re good at writing, design, web development, or any other number of skills, you can start taking on freelance projects and get paid for your work. This is a great way to make some extra money on the side, and you can often find work that fits into your schedule around your full-time job. Check out sites like Upwork and Fiverr to get started.
36. Food Truck
Start a food truck business. This is a great way to get into the food business without having to invest a lot of money in a brick-and-mortar restaurant. You can start small and work your way up as you build a clientele.
Before diving headfirst into any business venture, it’s important to do your research and make sure there’s a market for your product or service. This is especially true for side hustles, as you’ll be competing with other businesses in your field.
Also, evaluate the income potential of your side hustle and make sure it’s something you’re passionate about. If it’s not, you’ll quickly get burned out and won’t be able to sustain the business in the long run.
With that said, there are endless opportunities for making money with a side hustle. These are just a few ideas to get you started. So what are you waiting for? Start brainstorming and turn your side hustle into a profitable business today!
LAStartups.com is a digital lifestyle publication that covers the culture of startups and technology companies in Los Angeles. It is the go-to site for people who want to keep up with what matters in Los Angeles’ tech and startups from those who know the city best.