21 Profitable Side Jobs and Side Hustles

21 Easy and Profitable Ways to Make Extra Money

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Not so surprisingly, 44 million individuals are working on a side job or side hustle to supplement their income.   Now more than ever, you’re finding more Americans taking on additional side hustles out of sheer interest or necessity. From a survey from Bankrate, one in four people found themselves more passionate about their side job than their primary job!

If you’re one of these people, consider yourself not alone. Taking a side job could very well present new opportunities on top of the additional income.  

Here are 21 side hustles that may help you reach your financial goals.

1. Virtual Assistant

Wouldn’t working from home be great?  Although online jobs may be harder to find than the “traditional” part time jobs, there’s always a need for virtual assistants. 

Virtual assistants carry out tasks such as managing events, calendars, and social media.   They can prepare reports for a small business, or even book hotels and flights.  The responsibilities are wide open. Whatever that can be done online, one can do virtually.

Think of an online secretary.  Small businesses and entrepreneurs are always looking for some help.

Check out sites like Freelancer.com or Fiverr.com for positions.

2. Lawn Care

If you were lucky enough to make money mowing grass for your neighbors as a kid, the lawn care side hustle could be even more attractive as an adult.  As people have less time (or maybe they’re going older), the lawn care business could be a great option for making money on the side.  Also, this could be one of the best weekend jobs available to you if you’re busy during the week. 

Lawn care isn’t always limited to mowing the grass. You can work on weed control, fertilizing the grass, and initiating aeration.  As lawns get more high maintenance, your services could be more specialized and, thus, allow you to charge more.

3. Transcription

Want to work from home?  Transcription jobs require you to listen to audio and convert the audio to typed words.  There are companies that look for people to type their audio files for legal, medical or corporate record-keeping purposes.

If you’re the type of person who doesn’t mind repetitive tasks and rewinding audio, a transcription side business might be right for you.  For some this could be a full-time job that even pays $25 per hour.

Popular transcription job sites:

4. Data Entry

Much like a transcription job, data entry requires a similar level of skill.  It requires that you process documents and enter them into a database.  Because data is virtual, anyone (with adequate internet access) can log into a site and enter data into a database. 

Though data entry may sound easy, the side job requires hard work and commitment to time requirements.

Some popular data entry job sites include:

5. Driving and Ride Share

You’ve probably heard of Uber and Lyft, two of the biggest rideshare companies. Some say you can make some good money and it might be one of the best part-time jobs out there.  Some say it’s hard work and it puts a lot of wear and tear on the car.

The one thing that we can agree on is that these side hustles are huge and there’s ample opportunity out there for work.  But most notably it gives you flexibility – literally turn on your app to tell users that you’re working.

If you like driving and like to interact with people in public, driving through Uber or Lyft might be right for you.

6. Food Delivery

Amazon recently launched a program where they guaranteed grocery delivery within 2 hours.  Sounds amazing, right? For Amazon to make this happen, they need to have a large workforce to be available during peak delivery times.

For someone who has experience with delivery jobs, this may be a perfect opportunity for a side job.  Check out the Amazon Flex site for information.  Drivers can make $18-25 an hour.

Of course, Amazon isn’t the only player in this space.  Companies like Instacart, Shipt, and Peapod deliver groceries to busy individuals. 

The main concern about food delivery drivers is that there are lots of small orders that don’t provide many tips.  It could be a mixed bag (no pun intended) with the orders.

7. Child Care

If you like taking care of children, you might not know that you can provide childcare in your home.  In-home services can work depending on the zoning laws of the local or state laws.   Also note, the number of children you can have is limited.  Check with your state laws. 

In-home care isn’t the only option, and you can check with daycare centers if there are part-time opportunities. The opportunities are usually during the 9-5 hours.

8. Dog Walking

A dog walking side hustle could be a lot of fun for dog enthusiasts.  And more importantly, the dog walking hustle has become a $1 billion business according to IBIS World.   It’s no surprise more individuals are taking on this new side job.

Being a dog walker requires flexibility and understanding of dog needs.  What most people also forget is that insurance plays a key role.  Companies like Pet Care Insurance provide dog walker insurance. 

9. Create an eCommerce Business

Like selling stuff?  For the entrepreneurs, an eCommerce business can potentially bring much higher revenues than the typical side gig.   People simply buy products and there’s no real limit on the number of sales you can have.

Start by creating a website.  There are plenty of website companies that will host your online store.  Websites like Shopify, BigCommerce, and Volusion offer an easy interface that allows your site to be created in a short time.  If you’re more technical and don’t mind starting a website from scratch consider hosting companies like BlueHost.

There’s much more to just creating a website.  You need inventory and a system where you can effectively market your company.   Start learning about Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and digital marketing.  These skills can take your further down in the eCommerce path.

10. Become a Bank

Peer-to-Peer lending has become a popular way of getting passive income through higher interest rates.  It allows individual investors to invest in loans that carry an interest.  Borrowers sign up for the loan and provide you with periodic interest payments.

The easiest way to invest is through “middlemen” companies like LendingTree and Prosper.  They essentially offer a platform that matches investors with borrowers.   

This is also a perfect option if you’re not getting much of a return on safe investments like money markets and savings accounts.

The downside, of course, for this type of investment is that the borrower can default.  Check the borrower’s credit score and income to see if that person is credit-worthy.  Many of the platforms allow you to do so.

11. Cleaning Service Company

I’ve had friends over the years telling me that a cleaning company is easy to set up and get straight into business.  If you don’t mind the hard work, this might be for you. 

Cleaning side jobs are becoming more popular because they’re easier to setup.  There’s always a demand for cleaning even in a recessionary environment. 

Start by looking at Craigslist ads and see if there are any households or businesses that need extra cleaning.  

One important note:  A side cleaning hustle might require insurance, especially if you want to become a professional cleaner. 

Real Estate Agent Side Hustle

12. Real Estate Agent

Believe it or not, real estate side hustles don’t require a full-time engagement.  Part-time real estate agents are weekend warriors too or evening hustlers. 

To qualify as a real estate agent, you’ll need to pass a real estate exam. Each state has its own requirements and application.  

Check with your state for more information.  As long as you pass the exam, you can work for a real estate broker or company that sells houses and commercial real estate.

If you’re up for the grind of sending out mailers and updating social media posts, the job can go a long way.  Especially for people who like to interact with others, this could be a side job that might turn into a full-time profession.

13. House Sitting

House sitting is exactly what it sounds like.  You’re babysitting a house.   Many homeowners take vacations or step away from their homes for a long trip.   It’s becoming more of a need for homeowners to have someone watch over their homes

You might ask yourself if there are house sitting jobs near me.  There are plenty of sites that can help you find house sitting jobs near your location.  Care.com and Housesitter.com are popular sites that can help you match with potential homeowners.

14. Get Paid to Read

For the readers out there, you’d be surprised that some places pay you to read.   Well, most of them do require you to write a review.

Many readers like to voice their opinions and a great way to do this is through websites.  Here are some companies that actually pay you to read and then write reviews:

15. Testing Websites and Apps

There are billions of websites and apps out there and someone needs to test them. Got the skills to find problems and anomalies?  You could be one of the testers out there who can work from home and evaluate sites.

Testers go out and find the issues presented to them. They may even answer questions or do surveys for various companies. 

Though the pay isn’t usually by the hour, one can expect to make from $10 to $25 per website or app.

Companies that pay you to test:

16. Sell Homemade Items

Many people sell homemade items on popular craft sites like Etsy.   In fact, there are more people claiming that they’re making over $100,000 per year on Etsy.   Handmade items might be a perfect side hustle for those who love to make things from home.

Some popular homemade items:

  • Soap
  • Rings
  • Mugs
  • Smartphone accessories
  • Knitted Clothing
  • Watch Bands
  • Wallets

Make sure that you read the terms and conditions of Etsy before you step into a home business.

17. Build Websites

I was surprised to learn that building a website wasn’t as hard.  Platforms like WordPress can make the effort almost thoughtless. 

If you have what it takes to be patient and build a website for clients, you can earn pretty decent money.

Make sure you have the right hosting company and the skills to know what plugins and themes are needed.  There are thousands of guides out there on how to build a website. 

As a website creator, you’ll also need to market your skills.  Place your adds on freelancer or craigslist to market your business.

18. Pet Sitting

Pet sitting, like dog walking, requires that you enjoy spending time with pets.   Often times, pet owners take vacations or need someone to pet sit during the day while they work.

With almost no startup cost, you can start pet sitting whenever you’re ready.  You can set your own schedule.

Like any business, you might want to look at insurance.  Insurance allows potential clients to know that you’re serious.   Remember, you’re in the business of caring for an animal.

Sites that help you find pet sitting gig opportunities:

19. Pet Grooming

Washing and grooming pets, particularly dogs, isn’t the most popular exercise for pet owners.  And it’s not much of a surprise that families have been seeking help in the industry for years. 

Is pet grooming for you?

Pet grooming will require more equipment and hardware.  And because this side hustle requires answer calls to people’s homes, you will need portable pet grooming equipment.  This could get expensive and it might require investments in the thousands of dollars. 

The good news is that you can charge more for grooming services than to pet sit or dog walk.  Check out websites like Rover.com for pet groomers.

20. DJ Services

The DJ occupation is an old and established side hustle that helps others celebrate events and weddings.  For people who have a steady 9-5, the DJ side job might be perfect because most events are on weekends or evenings. 

The DJ business does require equipment and portability, and equipment may cost you in the thousands to get started.  If you can’t afford to pay for the equipment, think about renting it.  If you buy, consider getting insurance.

With mobile technology, apps are becoming important as well.  Apps allow you to mix songs and adjust the music settings.   

If you have the energy to make people celebrate, talk to other DJs about suggestions and pointers.

21. Flipping items on Amazon and eBay

Flipping items as a side hustle can be lucrative.  Households have started Amazon and eBay businesses for years as a great way to make side money.

What’s needed is a good supplier and a way to spot trends.   You can source items to sell from Chinese companies like Alibaba or from a warehouse in your neighborhood.  Find out what’s selling through sites like Terapeak or by checking Ebay’s hotlist.   You can even source through major retailers if they have a sale or if they’re going out of business.

If you find a product that you can sell for a profit, you’re on your way.   However, it’s not something that can be easily done.  This side hustle requires that you test viability by selling items and see if you can get consistency.

For those getting started, there are plenty of books and courses out there that can help.

Final Thoughts

The best part-time jobs are the ones you love.  When you embark on a side hustle, you have to enjoy it because it’s counting on time that you don’t normally work.  Your free time is valuable to you, so pick the right one that will make it worthwhile.  

Who knows, your side hustle could evolve into a full-time business.

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