A side hustle is essentially a way of making money outside of a regular job or running your own business. They allow you to earn an additional income with the freedom and flexibility to be your own boss and pursue your passions.
Embarking on one can also be a good way for small business owners to generate additional cashflow and earn an income on top of operating their own business.
Small business owners can also use one to develop additional skills and experiences they can use to improve the productivity and even profitability of their own ‘primary’ business.
The Rise of Side Hustles
Today, there are more Americans working a side hustle than during any point in the last two decades.
Research shows that generating additional cash is the main motivator for doing so.
Paying off debt and building up savings are also among the key motivators for taking one on as a second business or as another job.
Other leading reasons people have a side hustle is to learn new skills and to start a business of their own.
Younger generations are particularly prone to work a side hustle. Data from Bankrate shows that one in four millennials, those aged between 18 and 26, are working on their own with a side hustle to generate an additional income.
A quarter of millennials say their efforts earn them $500 or more a month.
Most Common Types
When considering a side hustle, the world is literally your oyster. What’s great is, no matter what small business you currently operate, you can start a side hustle that isn’t relevant to your primary business but is rather akin to your passions and hobbies.
Some of the most common side hustles include:
- Driving (for example for Uber or Lyft)
- Delivering Food
- Renting Your Car
- Renting Vacation Properties
- YouTube Posting
- Ecommerce Reselling
- Virtual Assistant Service
- Preparing Taxes
- Business Consulting
- Social Media Managing
- Photographing Events
- Operating a Food Truck
- Event Planning
- Personal Training
- Teaching Online Courses
Planning for a Side Hustle
Running your own business is naturally time consuming, so the thought of running two businesses side-by-side can be daunting.
However, if you’re determined to give a side hustle a go, like starting any business venture, planning is the key to success.
Firstly, think about what it’s to be. More often than not, if it’s something you enjoy and are passionate about, the more likely you are to succeed.
You should ideally devote a regular time slot to work on your side hustle. Work out how much time you can realistically devote to without it impinging too much on your current business.
If, for example, a day a week is too much time to spend away from your principle business, make it one morning or afternoon a week instead.
The more realistic amount of time you set yourself to work on your new business venture, the more sustainable it is likely to be and the more success it is likely to generate.
Seasonal Side Hustles
If you don’t feel ready to commit to a full-time side hustle, you could always choose one that comes and goes with certain seasons.
For example, making and selling cards for Thanksgiving, Christmas decorations or chocolates at Easter, can be an enjoyable way to fulfill your arty passion and earn some more money during festive times of the year, whilst working on your main business for the rest of the year.