The ‘gig economy’, and ‘digital nomad’ are two new and trending buzzwords that indicate the telecommuting jobs market is healthy and expanding. Interest in telecommuting jobs is high. Decent paying telecommuting positions, some that even pay benefits, are readily available. Computer savvy people with tech and programming skills are doing best in this new economy, but there is work available for people with various interests and skill sets. New, function-rich telecommuting job search sites like this one are popping up to service employers and job seekers.
How the telecommuting jobs market is expanding
Google has recently created an ad markup category specific to telecommuting in its job postings that allow employers to indicate that the listing is for a telecommuting position.
Google Adds Markup For Telecommuting Positions in Job Postings
Google Adds Markup For Telecommuting Positions in Job PostingsGoogle has added a new type of markup to its job postings guidelines, which will let publishers indicate that they have a telecommuting jo…
Technological innovation seems to be driving the creation of many, hitherto unheard of types of work that can be done remotely.
115% Increase in Telecommuting since 2005, Says Report
The 2017 State of Telecommuting in the U.S. Employee Workforce report has been released by FlexJobs and Global Workplace Analytics. This report is the most up-to-date and comprehensive data analysis a…
The Futurist: automation and telecommuting will be as common as Wi-Fi in 2026
Sapna Saxena, country HR manager, APAC, Telstra predicts that the move towards greater automation and telecommuting will push the HR community to completely rethink its approach to work.In 2026, I pre…
With the power of connectivity and internet access today, a new form of work arrangement called telecommuting has emerged. In fact, telecommuting has allowed employees to work from any preferred location like at home or a café rather than at traditional-workplaces (offices). Additionally, with telecommuting employees can easily communicate with people from the office and even accomplish their tasks while at home. However, although telecommuting is gaining popularity, there are also some disadvantages about it and below are some of the advantages and disadvantages of telecommuting:
ADVANTAGES OF TELECOMMUTING:
It eliminates commuting to the workplace: If your job requires commuting every day, then telecommuting will eliminate the commuting and help you save a lot of time daily so that you can spend that time on doing other productive things you enjoy like spending more time with kids or spouse, exercising, sleeping or other activities of interest.
Greater Flexibility: most work-from-home jobs allow for a flexible work schedule. So, in case you want to do something else in the middle of the day like laundry or shopping, then you will be able to achieve this with telecommuting.
Increased Independence: Work-from-home jobs will allow you to complete your work without constant reminders which most people absolutely love. In fact, with telecommuting there is no office politics, no boss orders and no distracting coworkers. However, there are distracting factors with telecommuting like television, laundry, a comfy bed for napping but these can actually be eliminated with a high degree of self-control and self-discipline in-order to make you a more productive telecommuter.
: People who telecommute have very little need for professional clothing and this actually helps them save a lot of money every year. On top of that, telecommuting doesn’t require public-transit or fuel for your private car, lunches-out, dry-cleaning and child-care while saving on taxes each year because of the tax-deductible expenses associated with working from home.
Suitable for Vulnerable/Disabled People: Telecommuting actually offers a great work-alternative for the disabled, physically handicapped or mothers who may find it difficult to cope-up with traditional-modes of working. In fact, telecommuting allows vulnerable people to opt into gainful employment and even live a great life than never before.
Greater Fulfillment: With telecommuting, employees will feel happier and more fulfilled than those who work under a traditional working arrangement. This is actually brought about by factors like flexible work schedules, minimal supervisions and the lack of commuting to and from work.
Increased Employee Satisfaction: Telecommuting allows employees to work from a remote location thus giving them the freedom to get away from a work-routine and make them feel like the company is looking out for them. This actually makes employees more satisfied and happy with their jobs which can result into increased production.
Increased retention of employees: with telecommuting, an employee will be able to work from home while moving from an old house to the new one that is far-away from the workplace. So, this will help companies to retain competent and loyal employees by simply allowing them to work remotely.
Disadvantages of Telecommuting:
Less human interaction: if you’re a kind of person who loves interacting with other people, then working from home will make you feel isolated. However, you can solve isolation by chatting with friends through e-mail, phone calls, instant messaging, and video conferencing but still it’s not a greater substitute to face-to-face interactions. Additionally, some telecommuters consider working from a coffee shop or library in-order to satisfy interaction-habits. On top of that, a co-working space might solve this problem by allowing you to telecommute while working from an office setting.
: Working under a home environment actually comes with plenty of people or things that can easily distract you like; Radio, Television, Kids, etc. This will negatively impact you productivity levels.
It requires high self-motivation: With telecommuting, an employee must be highly self-motivated in-order to be more productive. This is mainly because there are many things that can distract you while working from home ranging from kids, friends to electronics.
It Mixes Work and Personal Life: With telecommuting, you can’t always shut-out your personal life while you’re working or turn-off your work-life while you’re “off the clock”. However, having a separate work space from your home can help solve this but some people find it difficult to stop working when they know it’s only a few feet away from home.
Lack of the ability to Brainstorm: Telecommuting is totally different from working in a traditional office environment where you can easily brainstorm with peers when encountering problems. In fact, with telecommuting there is no one to consult in-case you get a problem and this greatly affects your performance and productivity-levels.
It Hinders Career Growth and Development: Telecommuting actually makes it almost impossible to evaluate and supervise your performance. For example, it’s very hard for a company to a telecommuting employer for promotions thus greatly affecting your career growth and development.
Breach of Security: With telecommuting, employees can be provided with pass-codes to get connected to company network but this actually increases on security risks like hacking and unwanted intruders who might gain access to pass-codes thus putting an entire company at risk.
Affects Employee Morale: incase a company allows top-employees to telecommute like supervisors and managers who are looked up to by other employees, Then this will greatly affect the morale of members of the team that is left behind. In fact, it will affect the decisions needed to be made since it’s very difficult to decide without people brainstorming for solutions to a problem.
Difficult to Demonstrate Workload: If you are a telecommuter working for a company with a traditional office setup, other office-bound coworkers might perceive you as doing less-work simply because you’re at home. So, it’s very important to showcase your workload to demonstrate to managers and coworkers that you are accomplishing as much or more in-case your telecommuting.
Over the past several months, we’ve published a number of lifestyle posts encouraging people to try working remotely, or even to embrace a nomadic lifestyle. We are a distributed team, and our day-to-day operations involve a lot of online communication between people in different time zones, working from home offices, co-working spaces, or holiday spots. We’re living proof that remote work, for lack of a better word, works.
Rather than being less productive, researchers have found that most remote workers are more productive than their office counterparts. Remote workers have to deal with fewer distractions, have flexible working hours, waste less time commuting and getting ready for work. No traffic jams, no office dramas, and on the face of it, not a lot of stress. However, they are still prone to burnout.
Years ago, I saw a clever ad for a savings scheme for young families. It showed toddlers playing at home, with a simple (and true) caption that went something like this: The job they will be doing when they grow up hasn’t been invented yet. At the time, I was dabbling in 3D graphics, a concept I didn’t even bother trying to explain to my parents, born in the 1940s. I was born at a time when computers were already showing up in homes and offices, and when space flight was looked upon as routine (until the Challenger disaster). My dad, on the other hand, was born before the advent of the first digital computer, when the only objects piercing our stratosphere were V2s raining down on London and Antwerp.
But here’s the thing: The world around us was not created by our generation; it was created by their generation. That’s why remote work felt a bit odd when I first gave it a go in 2007. A lot of things were missing, and a lot of people thought I was weird for not taking an office job, suit and tie included. It can still feel weird from time to time, but that has nothing to do with the infrastructure, or the work itself. It has more to do with the way I organise my time and go about my daily routine, and it has a lot to do with the human psyche.
Remote jobs can be good for you, but depending on your character, they can also have some unpleasant side-effects. This is what I intend to discuss today: stress, burnout, anxiety, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and more: the dark side of remote working.
I have no medical training, so I can only offer a few words of advice based on my personal experience. If you feel like you could use some proper help, you should get in touch with colleagues, friends, and your doctor.
Let’s start by taking a look at what makes remote workers prone to burnout, and why it matters.
Home Is Where The Broadband Is
Remote workers can turn just about any spot into an office. Whether it’s taking conference calls in a parked car or from a beach café, we can make it work. Our office is in the cloud, not in our dad’s office building.
This is, of course, the most attractive thing about working remotely. You can work while traveling the world, visiting your folks, skiing, island-hopping in the Aegean and Adriatic, or just get up in the morning and start working in your pyjamas at home. Sounds stress-free, right?
Remote jobs coupled with a nomadic lifestyle can be just as stressful as 9-to-5 office jobs.
If you’re nomadic, bear in mind that travel can be stressful without the added burden of having to think about work at airport terminals, or break out your laptop on a train. Seeing some nice scenery and touring picturesque cities might be fun, but it’s also a distraction. Besides, the human mind is wired to adapt to just about anything. As you keep moving, the buzz you get from travelling to a new place starts to fade, but travel-induced stress does not. You can experience burnout on the road as well.
It is also important to distinguish between hard-core nomads and people who just like to extend their holidays by a few weeks. The latter still have a home to come back to. If you spend a few years on the road, sooner or later you’ll start to detach from old friends and lose the familiarity and certainty of home. Basically, you can turn any place into your home, but at some point you won’t feel at home anywhere.
Being able to rely on a social safety net, trusted friends and family, is important. Things go wrong, and when they do, it’s good to have someone around. Being on your own can be relaxing, as long as you don’t overdo it. Eventually, people tend to settle down, start a family, and play with their offspring; you know, those little bundles of joy that will apply for the jobs we are inventing today.
So, where does this leave us? Wait a minute, wasn’t remote work supposed to be good for you? What could possibly go wrong?
Burned Out And Bummed Out
Remember that detail about remote workers being more productive than their office counterparts? There is a price to pay for that extra productivity. Remote workers don’t get a chance to spend time chatting with their co-workers at the watercooler, or grab a sandwich at the local café. They don’t go out to lunch with their colleagues, either, and they don’t head out for a beer or glass of wine after work.
Workplace bonding is good, and I must note that I met many of my closest friends through work, which is next to impossible on a remote gig. That seemingly useless office chitchat is good for you; you are forced to take a break and interact with other people. However, if you are a remote workaholic, you can get up in the morning, start working, and utter your first words of the day when you go out for lunch, or worse, order takeout.
So, there is no commute, no office gossip, no coffee or lunch breaks with your teammates, and next to no human interaction. This could be a disastrous combination if you are prone to burnout. You’ll end up pushing yourself harder than you should, and since there’s nobody around to notice that you could use a break, chances are you won’t figure it out until it’s too late. It happened to me and, it could happen to you. If you think it can’t, if you think you’re tough, consider this: I spent three years of my life in a warzone, only to experience burnout in my cosy home office.
You see, collaboration technology is making remote teams more efficient and productive, but the human body is the weakest link in a distributed workforce infrastructure. Routers, servers, fiber-optic cables, processors and RAM don’t experience burnout, but people do.
90-hour weeks aren’t just a part of 1980s tech folklore. They are very real for many developers.
Ambitious freelancers, which I like to think most Toptal members are, can be too dedicated. They want to prove themselves, they stride to be more productive than the next guy, and they aim for excellence. They can stack up man-hours like there’s no tomorrow. To some extent, the industry culture encourages such behaviour. Pulling an all-nighter to hit a hard deadline, sipping energy drinks to stay awake, then unwinding with a booze binge: anything goes in our fast-paced industry. I’ve witnessed cool-headed and experienced professionals break down halfway through a project because they pushed themselves too hard, develop a range of health problems, ranging from weight gain to substance abuse. Burnout can break almost anyone.
Remember, if you mess up your professional or private life, you can bounce back. If you mess up your health, it’s much harder, and sometimes impossible. Plus, if you don’t care about health, you also run the risk of destroying your career and personal life in a single blow.
A close friend of mine, for instance, ditched his job three years ago and decided to start a healthy lifestyle. At the time he was a consultant for a major tech firm, but being a workaholic, the six-figure job took a toll on his health. He gained a lot of weight, stopped exercising, and started smoking (again).
One day, I ditched work so we could hit the slopes for some morning skiing, just like the good old days. Glancing at the cloudless winter sky, crisscrossed by shimmering contrails, he said, “There’s gotta be a consultant like me on one of those planes, heading to a new job. Boy, am I glad I’m not that poor bastard!”
Over the next two years, he managed to lose loads of weight (about 35kg/70lbs), drop a number of unhealthy habits, and brush up on his professional skills. Earlier this year, he got an even better gig, so the two-year hiatus obviously worked for him. Not only did he get his health back, but he is better off from a professional and financial perspective.
That may be a drastic example, and I hope it will not encourage any Toptalers to take a two-year leave of absence if they experience their first case of burnout. However, even two weeks can make a big difference, provided you catch the symptoms of burnout early.
Burnout affects your whole body. Remote workers can easily overlook many early symptoms.
Here are some of the most common burnout symptoms:
Anxiety and depression
Anger and irritability
Wide range of physical symptoms, such as indigestion, headaches, heart palpitations
Lack of motivation, degraded job performance
Cognitive issues, inability to focus, forgetfulness
Remember, this is not a checklist. You don’t have to exhibit all these symptoms if you are burned out. For example, my burnout symptoms included anxiety, fatigue, heart palpitations, and inability to focus. I am not sure about anger and irritability, because I’ve always been an irritable person.
I am not a doctor, so if you suspect you might be suffering from burnout, I suggest you do some research of your own, maybe take an interactive test or two, and consult your family physician. After all, this is a tech blog, not a health blog.
Burnout affects people in all walks of life and in all industries, so what makes remote workers different? Well, if an athlete starts cracking under pressure, the team and the coach will notice something is wrong. The same goes for office workers; their co-workers will likely spot symptoms of burnout early on. This isn’t possible with remote workers.
Recognising burnout symptoms early on is of vital importance and I cannot stress this enough.
The deeper you sink into it, the longer it will take to recover, it’s as simple as that. The obvious problem with remote workers, myself included, is that most of us work alone, so we fail to notice something is wrong, and if we do, we still keep going for longer than office workers. For example, I became anxious about driving months before I figured out what was wrong, which would have been a much bigger problem if I was supposed to commute to work. I might have caught the symptoms earlier, and consequently, addressed them sooner. My failure to act on these early symptoms made things worse.
Remote workers are more prone to burnout than their office counterparts for a number of reasons.
Another potential burnout issue for freelancers is that they can jump from project to project, client to client, in a matter of months. In that case, most of their communication will involve people who are unfamiliar with their personality. If you spent the last five years sharing an office with a couple of people, they’ll probably spot your burnout symptoms before you do. If your work involves a dozen remote clients each year, they will simply not get to know you well enough. Digital nomads and many on-site consultants have it even worse because they are not surrounded by friends and family who could help spot the problems.
There is not a lot of research on remote burnout, but I suspect people like us are exposed to more risk than office workers due to the fact that we may overlook many early symptoms.
So What Can Remote Workers Do?
I will not turn this into a blog post on how to tackle burnout. The Internet is already full of them; some are good, some aren’t, so if you need more information, feel free to Google them. Basically, they all boil down to this: take a break, work less, exercise more, and eat healthily.
The idea behind this post is to help fellow remote workers do the following:
Be aware of burnout risks
Spot the symptoms early on
Take steps to avoid burnout
Burnout is real, and just because you haven’t experienced it yet, doesn’t mean you won’t. Sure, you can do 12- to 14-hour days, and you can work weekends, I did too, but you can’t do it forever. That’s how burnout got its name to begin with.
If however, you are aware of the risks, you need to be on the lookout for burnout symptoms. I already explained why this can be a lot more challenging for remote workers than office folk. That’s why I keep emphasising this vital step, so please forgive me if you think I am overdoing it.
In my opinion, prevention is the best course of action, and I really wish I read something like this post a few years ago, it would have saved me a lot of trouble and unnecessary visits to the doctor’s office, including one to the emergency room. My hubris landed me there, and I hope my experience keeps some of you out.
The best way of combatting burnout? Be informed and take steps to prevent it altogether.
Here is what all of us can and should do to avoid burnout:
Don’t put your social life on the backburner
Take breaks and put them to good use
Try to exercise more
Create a routine that works for you
Prioritise your work and your life
Make sure you get quality time off
Don’t be cocky and overconfident
Be careful with caffeine, sugar, booze
Our social lives are the obvious starting point. We’re people, not lone wolves, it’s innate nature. Make sure your work does not get in the way of your social activities. No excuses, just don’t do it. Ever.
We spend hours glued to our computers every day, so it’s important to remind ourselves to get up and engage in some activities every now and then. A sedentary lifestyle is very bad for you. Go out for breakfast or coffee, go for short walks a few times a day, do some housekeeping. Do anything. On that note, I am off to fold my laundry.
Use your free time to exercise. You don’t have to hit the gym every other day, but you do have to walk around a lot to compensate for your sedentary lifestyle. Exercise also helps keep stress and anxiety at bay.
None of this is possible without a good routine. Find one that works for you and stick to it. Restrict most, if not all, your work to certain hours when you feel productive (for most people, it’s the morning). As odd as it may sound, consider some less efficient habits. When you head out to lunch, for example, don’t restrict yourself to places minutes away from your home or office; take the long route, create errands that will compel you to spend more time outdoors and get your mind off work.
Quality time means that you need to set clear boundaries. For some people, it’s no work after a certain time of day, while others may refuse to do any work over the weekend. Our office is anywhere we want it to be, but that doesn’t mean we have to be in it all the time.
Being overconfident and biting off more than you can chew is never a good idea. Like I said, my hubris was responsible for by burnout. I thought I could handle everything right until the moment I ended up in hospital. Be reasonable and take it easy.
Eating healthily is one thing we should all do, regardless of stress and burnout yet many of us don’t. An often overlooked problem involves stimulants, ranging from your morning coffee to your nightcap. A lot of stressed-out freelancers are hooked on caffeine, alcohol, and over the counter medications.
This brings me to the next point.
Things You Should Avoid
Caffeine is not harmless. It can cause problems if you overdo it. I am not suggesting you stop drinking your morning coffee, but if you drink a lot of caffeinated soft drinks, or energy drinks, it might be a time to slow down. They’re burnout fuel.
Caffeine, stress, and sugar are a bad mix; caffeine can make anxiety worse, mess up your digestive system, lead to more sweating, urination, and so on. Energy drinks are the worst offenders, although many of us enjoy them. They often contain loads of caffeine and loads of sugar, both of which can have nasty side-effects when combined with stress. And I won’t even waste time explaining why spicing up your morning coffee with a cigarette is bad. Remember folks, for every cigarette you smoke, God takes a minute of your life and gives it to Keith Richards.
What about a beer or two after work? There is nothing wrong with having a couple of beers or glasses of wine, especially if you get good stuff and enjoy this guilty pleasure over a nice meal. In fact, many medical experts find that moderate alcohol intake is good for you. However, if you are stressing out and on the verge of burnout, it’s not. Alcohol masks some of your burnout symptoms and lulls you into a sense of well-being.
A lot of things can help you prevent and overcome burnout, but even more things can make it worse.
For the same reason, over-the-counter medications are not to be messed with either. These meds aren’t necessarily bad for you, but you should not self-medicate. Always consult an expert, just in case you have some underlying conditions, or if you are using happy pills as a crutch for something else.
Of course, the worst thing you can do when you are stressed is to abuse alcohol or prescription medications, which will just make things much worse in the long run. If you happen to live in Colorado, and you’re considering getting some recently legalised herbs, think again. In this situation, that’s bad for you too, and can cause nasty withdrawal symptoms if you are suffering from burnout, anxiety, depression, and a range of other conditions.
There are a lot of things to keep in mind, but in my opinion, the takeaway is simple: Be aware of the risks and take immediate action if you notice signs of burnout. Notify your superiors, your clients, consult your doctor, reach out to your friends, and take some quality time off.
That is what I intend to do next week, and that was one of the reasons I decided to cover this issue. Now I have a good excuse to head down to the beach.
~Post may contain affiliate links. I only share opportunities I feel will benefit my readers.
Transcription Express is seeking telecommute general transcriptionists to work on an independent contractor basis. The company currently employs over 190 home-based contractors. These work at home positions are available nationwide!
You will be paid a per-page rate. Telecommute contractors can expect to make anywhere from $600 to $1,600-plus per month, depending on hours worked and speed.
From the company:
“We are looking for skilled, reliable, and deadline driven transcription service contractors who want to work with a transcription company that is prepared to provide transcription work on a regular basis. Our system is simple: Transcriptionist typists can download client audio files via the internet to their computer 24 hours a day, 7 days a week via our online digital system. Transcriptionists are able to work on their transcripts in the comfort of their own home or office. “
Requirements (from work-at-home job listing):
Type at least 60 words per minute with 90% or better accuracy. Previous transcription experience, particularly with verbatim style transcription, a plus.
Be able to show proficiency in spelling and homonyms.
Be a native English speaker and located in the United States.
Have a computer with the Windows 7Pro or 8 Pro or newer operating system and reliable high-speed internet.
Have or be willing to acquire digital foot pedal.
Must live in the U.S. and have reliable high-speed Internet.
Be aware: this company does require its telecommute subcontractors to pay a licensing fee to access its system. They do have an A+ listing with the Better Business Bureau.
If interested in learning more about this telecommute opportunity, please see the telecommute job listing. Good luck!
In today’s age of increased technology, employers are realizing that telecommuting and remote work is becoming more acceptable. However, not all candidates are qualified to work in such an independent manner, so showcasing a track record of success and remote work experience will significantly increase your employment prospects for remote positions.
They are a few ways to best highlight your remote work experience and talents. In your employment history section, instead of listing your home city and state next to the company name you worked for, it is recommended that you use the term “Remote” where the city and state would go. Lavie Margolin, author of Mastering the Job Interview, suggests using one of these three ways:
List the organization’s corporate location when using a city/state format but note that the work is performed remotely in the first sentence.
Skip city/state in the formatting and note that it is work that is performed remotely in the first sentence.
Another option would be to separate out home-office jobs into their own “Remote Work Experience” category. Directly seeing a list of other companies that have trusted you to telecommute builds a hiring manager’s confidence.
You should also include your remote work experiences in the descriptions of your job. Good resumes show rather than tell. As you discuss your past job responsibilities, detail how they were performed off-site. For example, an effective presentation of a customer service position might read something like, “Responded to 75+ client inquiries daily through the company’s website while stationed at a home-based office with a high-speed Internet connection.” For a sales role, you can include a bullet point such as, “Recognized by leadership as the top performer for the 2018 fiscal year for converting more cold calls into billable accounts than any other remote worker.”
Another good idea for highlighting your remote work could be to include it in the Skills Section. Being a self-starter, an excellent communicator, or an outstanding time manager are all good skills to present for an array of jobs. However, when work is being performed remotely, displaying your expertise in certain areas can make the difference between your resume landing an interview.
When discussing your skills, look at how they particularly fit into the remote environment. Exemplary communicators, for instance, may want to mention their comfort using video conferencing, chat platforms, and instant messaging to stay in touch with others on the team. Solid collaborators could discuss using shared documents and daily check-ins to accomplish company goals while working offsite.
Remember, your resume is the starting point for presenting yourself as a solid candidate for a telecommuting role. Continue to reinforce your background through a tailored cover letter and a stellar interview that lets employers know you will be a valuable addition to the team from any location.
If you’ve already got a job you love, there’s no need to quit. Instead, negotiating for remote work will allow you to keep your job, and according to this FlexJobs survey, it might make you more productive as well.
Here’s how to start turning your job into a remote one.
1. Establish whether you really want to work remotely.
Is it so you can travel? If so, have you travelled extensively before? Is it so you can spend more time with family – or maybe it’s so that you can focus on your health? Have you ever worked alone, outside of the social comfort of an office?
Working online is not for everyone. It can be very isolating, and not all personalities are suited to solitude.
Thinking about why you want to work remotely will really usher out any anxieties or naivetes you have about it. If it’s because you don’t currently enjoy doing your work, it may not be your location flexibility that you should change. Establish the real reason why you’d like to be remote, and whether you think you’re cut out for it (our Humans of Outsite videos might help you think about this!).
2. Formulate a debate.
Ok, so you’d definitely like to be remote for a legitimate reason. Now you have to consider whether this is reasonable with your role. If you’re a team manager, with on-site contact hours daily, it might not work so well for you. The same goes for any role where the job includes face-to-face client meetings, in one city. You should also check out whether you already have flexible hours, but you don’t know about them.
However, if you’re already spending the majority of your hours on a computer, you’re chatting to your colleagues on Slack and your meetings could be condensed to a Monday (and done via Skype/Zoom/Google Hangouts), you’re already remote.
Chances are, your boss might be totally cool with it, see eye to eye with you, and there will be no debate. If there is, back up your argument with statistics about remote work, why you’re not necessarily more productive in office, and how the future of work is already changing. It may help them attract new talent, too.
3. Write the email (and wait on it).
If you’d prefer to ask in person, go ahead, however this is a conversation best left for email – it allows both parties to wait, and formulate their answer. There are a few elements that deserve mentions:
– Propose a trial period (for example, working from home every Friday for 1 month to see the effects/potential issues)
– Outline the following period (if the trial period goes well, how does the policy continue?)
– Outline how you intend to communicate with the team whilst ‘away’, on that day.
– Potential benefits to your company, and your team! You could be networking with a community whilst you all work, in a beautiful place. That’s definitely a benefit.
If the first email hasn’t been received ‘well’, there’s room for negotiation. Establish why your company isn’t comfortable with remote work – if it’s because the profession does not translate well to a remote job, it may be time to seek out a new opportunity. However, if it’s the first request your manager has received for remote work, the proposal may need further reinforcement, and testing.
Alternatively, it may have gone well, and you might be signing up for your first stay in Hawaii, Bali or Portugal.
Ready to start your own adventure? Become a Member of Outsite, or suggest the Outsite Business Membership to your team – that way you can all kick back in your new Bali, Hawaii or Lisbon headquarters.
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You’re at a holiday party, and invariably, someone asks what you do. You respond, explaining that you work remotely. Cue the raised eyebrows and polite nods.
That’s because when remote work gets mentioned, it can conjure up all kinds of notions. People working in their pajamas. Workers slacking off. A disconnected, maybe even dysfunctional team culture. Some people still have this idea that you need to be sitting in an office from 9-5 to get things done. A few companies such as IBM are even bringing all remote workers back into the fold of the office.
But then there are other companies like GitLab, Buffer, and Zapier, which are ‘remote only,’ with everyone working out in the wild. They find a range of benefits, including the extra flexibility and increased productivity that comes from avoiding a commute and covering more time zones (not to mention the work-life balance for employees and the overhead savings for the company).
Most companies aren’t fully remote yet. But we all experience remote work and collaboration in some way, whether we have an occasional ‘WFH day’ or work virtually with teammates and other offices that are scattered across the globe. In fact, a 2015 survey found that 37 percent of US workers have fulfilled their job duties from somewhere other than an office, compared to just 9 percent in 1995.
Remote work isn’t just about your individual productivity…you’ve got to figure out how to work together as a remote team.
As remote work becomes part of the fabric of our working lives, we need to find ways of embracing it and making it better. The first step on that journey is remembering that remote work isn’t just about your individual productivity when you’re not in an office—you’ve also got to figure out how to work together as a remote or virtual team.
So we’ve rounded up some tips so individuals and teams can make the best out of remote work.
Tips for productivity outside of the office
Create some boundaries. Even if you don’t have the space for a home office, it’s important to carve out a dedicated workspace.If you work from the comfort of your bed, it may be more tempting to take that nap. (It may also make it more difficult to fall asleep when it’s time for bed).
Set up a routine. When you don’t have to commute, you get precious time back in your day. But with extra (and more flexible) hours, you still need to be thoughtful about how you structure your day. Adopting a can make you more productive and creative.
Take breaks. It can be hard to ‘switch off’ when your work and life are happening in the same place. But it’s important to remember that you can and you should take breaks.Avoid cabin fever by hitting the gym, taking the dog out, or grabbing coffee.
Share your status. Whether it’s through scheduled check-ins or just by updating your status on the chat tool, make sure you’re communicating with the rest of your team. If you go offline, provide extra context around why and when you’ll back in an away message.
Make video your friend. You may be tempted not to show your face (especially if you haven’t changed out of your pajamas) but when you can, try having video meetings instead of just calls. Face-to-face interaction leads to tons of non-verbal cues. Without video, you’re missing out on all those signals—and your chance to build relationships.
Be considerate of time zones. If you have a teammate in Europe who’s always staying late for your weekly calls, offer to rotate the meeting time so you can share the inconvenience that comes from working in different time zones.
Get more tips for boosting your productivity when you’re working from home >>
Tips for making a remote team work
Set some ground rules for team communication. At an in-person or virtual team meeting, come together to decide on a ‘team charter’ for communication. Figure out in what situations you all should use video conference, phone calls, chat, or email, and set a preference order. Agree on some ground rules, such as ‘no blind cc’s in emails’ so everyone’s clear on what not to do. It’s important that this is a joint effort, with team-wide input (not just a directive handed down from the leader).
Check in with the team. Hold team-wide video-conference meetings if it’s possible. See everyone’s faces and allow time for casual conversation to help build those personal relationships and team bonds.
If you’re a leader, you need to mentor, develop, and sometimes have tough conversations with the people you lead, all remotely. Set up regular one-on-one video meetings with your direct reports. Try to give feedback in that setting instead of via email, which can be misinterpreted.
Hire good communicators. When hiring we often focus on specific skills, previous experience, and cultural fit. But when you’re building a remote team, you have to assess virtual skills as well. Remote work requires good listening, communication, and collaboration skills. Talk to candidates the same way you’ll talk to them on the job throughout the interview process: in person, by phone, on video, and via email.
Get more tips for building an effective virtual team >>
One more tip: Trello recently put together a handy guide to remote work, full of tips and strategies. They’re walking the walk, too—65 percent of their team is remote, and they even went so far as to add ‘embrace remote’ to their company values. Be sure to check it out for even more tips on embracing remote work.
Because you have an office in your home you can design that space to suit your style without worrying about what co-workers or your boss would think. Here is one example of that principle perhaps taken to extremes, with beautiful results…
Imagine that you are going to be going into business for yourself at home or telecommuting to work, and you want a home office space which is separate from your main living area.
Your first thought might be to tack on an extension to your home. But then you might start thinking about building a tiny house instead to function as your private office.
But one thing you probably wouldn’t think about doing is putting that tiny office in the treetops.
This awesome tree house office was commissioned for a client in Shropshire, England. It has a cool medieval look to it with the arch windows and doors and the mullioned glass.
Shingles around the lower part of the siding provide a unique texture, and help to give the office even more character.
The interior of the office is the very height of luxury! And its functionality certainly extends way beyond that of your typical office. While it is meant to be used as a study during the day, after work is complete, it functions more like a den. There is a furnace for heat, Sky TV for entertainment, and a kitchenette with a wine cooler.
You can see the wine cooler in this shot. You also can actually see the part of the “office” which serves the actual purpose of office space!
Judging from this, I would say that the client is more focused on play than on work. It seems like about 90% of the “office” is given over to leisure.
But you know what? If I had an “office” this cool, I also wouldn’t want to just do my work in it. I’d want to hang out in here constantly. So that makes total sense to me.
Discover more about the Tree House Office at Blue Forest.
Just a Bachelor’s Degree can get you in these 10 Remote Jobs. You still need to demonstrate skills or knowledge about your field of expertise. Some fields more in demand than others…
10 Remote Jobs That Only Require A Bachelor’s Degree
Only 27% of college graduates have a job related to their major. Over 60% aren’t even using their college degree.If you graduated from college and you’re not sure what to do, you have plenty of option…
Working from home means telecommuting or being a Business Owner or Independent Contractor
Wanting to work from home? Looking for a telecommuting job search site? Try these customized remote worker job searches..
Ready to Work from Home? Try These 7 Hassle-Free Job Search Sites
Whether you’re looking to freelance, put more money toward bills, or enter into an entirely new career field, finding profitable work from home jobs can be a huge benefit. Online jobs provide freedom,…
No matter how rewarding your full-time job may be, finding the right side business idea and eventually becoming fully self-employed is even more meaningful than great pay and solid benefits.
Choosing the path of entrepreneurship, and working on your side business idea, is without a doubt riskier than being content with holding a 9-5 job. It requires way more sacrifice. However, once you’re reaping the lifestyle benefits of being your own boss and hustling your way into making significantly more money than you ever could at your day job, the hard work will have all been worth it. So, let’s talk business ideas.
The question I’m asked the most (by far) when I meet and speak with fellow entrepreneurs is, “How do I know which business idea is best for me?” This one is always quickly followed by, “How do I start on this side business idea while I’m still working my full-time job?”
This makes perfect sense. With how many business ideas already exist out in the world, it can be difficult to come up with the right side business idea you should be spending your time on. Especially if you’re looking for the kind of home business idea that’ll afford you immense lifestyle flexibility.
The majority of us don’t have the luxury of being able to quit our day jobs to pursue starting a business idea today, without having to worry about how we’re going to meet our financial obligations moving forward with no immediate income.
Enter: The Side Hustle. I’ve created an entire podcast to talk about the side hustle, featuring interviews with the world’s top entrepreneurs right here on—The Side Hustle Project. Listen to my episode about How to Find a Profitable Business Idea right here…
That’s why I’m a huge advocate of always starting a side business while working full-time, so that you can test your way into your new product or service, get feedback, validate the business idea, and start generating income before you quit your job. If you can master the art of scaling a side business idea while keeping your day job, you’ll have no trouble succeeding once you’re fully self-employed.
When I set out to start in on a new business idea, I always make sure it aligns with both my core competencies and my interests. It starts with learning how to discover your strengths as an entrepreneur, and it’s how I make sure I’ll be engaged, even when the going gets rough. I learned this the hard way when I decided to start a freelance business a few years ago to offer my freelance content marketing services.
With that in mind, I put together this massive list of the 101 Best Side Business Ideas You Can Start While You’re Still Working a Full-Time Job, to help give you inspiration with proven side business ideas that can be executed on while you still keep your day job—and primary source of income.
The big problem for many of us is that working a full-time job makes it too exhausting to even consider trying to find an alternative outlet. Many of the world’s most successful entrepreneurs struggled with this when they wanted to start a business for the first time while they still had a day job.
Luckily, there are tons of ways to start businesses and make money with a side hustle while still leading a well-rounded, meaningful life. If you play your cards right, you’ll be able to quit your day job and grow your side business idea into an empowering self-employed career.
Obviously some of these small business ideas have more earning potential than others, but what they all share in common are relatively low barriers to entry and the flexibility to work at them for a limited amount of time per week. I also tried to focus on side business ideas that have some sort of online component to them, since that’s what I love most.
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If I missed any good ones, please share your best side business ideas in the comments below! If you’re ready to start a business while you’re still working full-time, join my free course, Find a Profitable Business Idea.
Please note that some of the links below are affiliate links and at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission. Know that I only recommend tools and learning resources I’ve personally used and believe are genuinely helpful, not because of the small commissions I make if you decide to purchase them. Most of all, I would never advocate for buying something that you can’t afford or that you’re not yet ready to implement.
Here are my picks for the best business ideas you can start right now, while you’re still working full-time.
101 Best Side Business Ideas You Can Start While Working a Full-Time Job
1. Graphic Design.
While having a formal background in graphic design is absolutely going to be helpful, it’s also relatively easy to learn the foundations of graphic design on your own. An increasingly easy-to-use Adobe Illustrator and even more easily accessible tools like Stencil and Visme are making it so that just about anyone with two opposable thumbs, a bit of creativity, and motivation can earn a side income doing things like designing (and selling) images like these motivational quotes that can be printed onto posters and sold on platforms like Etsy. Or you can find a local startup, small business owner, or photographer who could benefit from some extra help designing or altering images.
But before you can graduate from side business idea and start earning a full-time living as a graphic designer, you’ll need to build your skills—I recommend starting with reading the foundational book Graphic Design School and Steal Like an Artist, the incredible book by Austin Kleon about how to become more creative. To accelerate your education in becoming a graphic designer even quicker, check out the online courses Graphic Design Fundamentals and The Graphic Design Bootcamp.
Web designers are incredibly valuable for technology companies—which is why becoming a freelance web designer is a top side business idea today. Web design is all about mastering the art of creating a beautiful, value-driven experience for the people using a website or app. There are always new websites popping up in need of professional web design, and foundational books like HTML & CSS: Design and Build Websites by acclaimed web designer Jon Duckett and Don’t Make Me Think by user experience legend Steve Krug will get you started down the right path to quickly determining whether or not becoming a web designer is a viable side business idea for you.
Then you can move into more actionable online courses like Modern Web Design on CreativeLive and Learn Web Design and Profitable Freelancing on Udemy will teach you everything from foundational web design knowledge to earning your first freelance income as a web designer. On top of that, you can take even more immersive courses and learning experiences with access to direct instructor feedback and personal mentorship with platforms like Treehouse, Lynda and General Assembly to get up-to-speed even quicker with this career path and listen to my podcast interview with Ian Paget about how to become a freelance designer as a side business idea.
As a web developer, you’ll build incredibly valuable skills that are in extremely high demand. You can get up to speed on building websites in as little as a few months with inexpensive or free online education programs like Treehouse, the Web Developer Bootcamp on Udemy and Codecademy.
Using your skills for profit is a common trend with all of the best side business ideas. If you’re an expert at something, there’s likely an audience of people online who would be willing to pay to become an expert in your field—just like you. If you want to take your skills and turn them into an online course that teaches others how to get the same results you’ve achieved in your life, career, or business, start with How to Create an Awesome Online Course on Udemy, where instructor Miguel Hernandez covers how he makes over $90,000/yr teaching online. You’ll learn from more than 8 hours of video instruction.
If you want to find a profitable online course idea in the next 3 days, join my free online course Find a Profitable Business Idea today. It’ll walk you step-by-step through the process I’ve used to generate more than $15,000 in online course sales in a single week. Then once you’re ready to start teaching your own online course, I recommend using Teachable, the easiest and most affordable platform to use for creating, hosting and selling your online courses. They also have a ton of free educational resources about how to get started with creating an online course (yes, even as a side business idea) when you sign up right here.
Packaging your skills and knowledge into a downloadable eBook that delivers value to those seeking to learn a skill, advance in their careers, or start their own businesses, makes for a strong value proposition if you target the right audience. Check out Leslie Samuel’s great guide to selling eBooks online and start building your strategy around this side business idea. This class with Tara Gentile on CreativeLive will also show you how to use your existing body of work to write an eBook within the next week. Put in some serious work with your eBook, build an audience and you’ll have a platform to pitch traditional publishers on landing a book deal—then you can write one of the best business books and really build your personal brand.
6. Instagram Marketing.
Build up a following on your Instagram account and you could quickly be approached by major brands, gear companies, and other relevant businesses that sell products or services related to the type of content you share on Instagram—creating multiple potential side business ideas that’ll come to you. If you have the right marketing skills and hundreds of thousands of followers, you can easily charge anywhere between $500 to $5,000 per post (or more)—which makes for a very profitable side business idea. Check out this fashion Instagrammer on ThePennyHoarder, making a significant income from brand sponsorships. Once you get some traction, to cut down on the amount of time you spend uploading images, you can make your entire workflow more efficient by posting photos from your Mac or PC.
7. Online Coaching.
If you have something you’re skilled at and very passionate about, you can turn that winning combination into offering your services with one-on-one online coaching as a solid side business idea. Just be sure to implement your own opportunity management system so you don’t get caught up working with clients that you can’t measurably help. Regina Anaejionu will give you a step-by-step plan for putting your skills and experience to work by developing an online coaching business—even as a side business idea in the time around your full-time job—so be sure to check out her content for a jump start on this side business idea.
On top of just the skill and experience components to being a successful online coach, this side business idea is all about building a community around the help you’re offering and fostering trust with members. Plus, your community members will learn from each other along the way. Creating the space for that community can be as simple as setting up a private Facebook group or choosing a community-building platform like Ning.com that has even more capabilities like using your own custom URL, having internal forums, customized designs, and more.
If you can create a regular audience for your podcast on a specific topic, this is a great way to get sponsors and fund this side business idea. My podcast, The Side Hustle Project is actually my current side business idea, and because I had an existing audience here on my blog at the time I launched the show, I was able to broker a $5,000 sponsorship from Freshbooks to place ads on the first ten episodes before I even got started.
When I used to work at CreativeLive, I regularly paid $250-$500 (or even much more depending upon audience size) per episode for 90 seconds worth of advertisements on relevant podcasts like The Tim Ferriss Show, the #1 business podcast right now from the 4-Hour Workweek author, Tim Ferriss. The podcast has even helped Tim launch his latest New York Times bestseller, Tools of Titans to a wider readership.
Naturally, it helps if you already have an online audience you can tap for listening to your regular podcast (like I did), but that hasn’t stopped thousands of people from building successful side business ideas into lucrative podcasts—including Alex Blumberg, founder of Gimlet Media who teaches how to use storytelling and launch a podcast. You can also check out this class from podcaster and entrepreneur, Lewis Howes, abouthow to make money podcasting as a side business idea, which regularly broadcasts for free on CreativeLive.
9. Amazon Reselling.
Anyone can sell goods on Amazon, provided you have products to sell (or buy low, then resell). If you’re the type to hit all the local garage sales each weekend, there’s all sorts of valuable things that can be resold online as a side business idea. If you want to step your Amazon selling game up, check out this detailed guide to Amazon and eBay retail arbitrage on Entrepreneur featuring an interview with Julie Becker and several drop-shippers who’ve grown this home based business idea from side business idea into a lucrative money-maker.
10. Local Business Consulting.
If you’ve developed valuable skill sets or certifications within your industry over the years, consider putting your skills to use in your free time by offering your consulting services to local business owners as a potentially lucrative side business idea. Whether you’re an expert marketer, business strategist, or manufacturing aficionado, there’s likely a local business owner who’s willing to pay you to help them solve an issue with their company—if you can craft an effective cold email that convinces them to hire you. Start with this 18-step checklist to becoming a local business consultant as a side business idea, from Karyn Greenstreet. When you’re ready to get serious about becoming a consultant, check out all of my picks for the best online business courses to keep building your skills and learning how to land your first consulting clients. Personally, I think this is one of the best business ideas you can get started with today.
11. Phone Case Business.
There’s a huge growing market for mobile phone accessories, and plenty of handmade sellers are raking in 6 and sometimes 7 figures from their phone case businesses. You can get your own phone case business up and running as a side business idea in a matter of days with turnkey solutions from Case Escape, my previous company, and you can now get ready-to-go kits that’ll give you everything you need to start a phone case business. Once you’re up and running, you can sell cases on Etsy, Amazon Handmade, and Fancy. During our first year of selling phone cases as a side business idea on our Etsy store, we made around $60,000 in revenue from that selling channel alone—not to mention additional sales from fairs, trade shows, promotional products vendors, parties, events and other online marketplaces. From there, the sales only continued growing and we graduated from side business idea to full-time company that I ran with my best friend for multiple years.
12. Commission-Only Sales.
If you have a knack for connecting with people and the willingness to take on some risk, a commission-based freelance sales role could be a great side business idea for you. Many startups seek part-time and commission-only salespeople, especially when they’re just getting started, which means you’ll often be able to make this a home based business idea. Develop your sales strategies and become an inside sales rep on the side in your free time for nothing but commission, negotiate a little equity and you could profit big time if you’re pitching a solid product and the startup succeeds. Start your sales education with the acclaimed books, Secrets of a Master Closer and To Sell is Human by famed bestselling author Daniel Pink and you’ll be well on your way to getting this side business idea off the ground.
Then you can move on to more immersive sales education through online courses like Sales Training and Prospecting on Udemy, The Guide to Pitching and Selling Clients on CreativeLive and the wide variety of tactical sales courses you can get access to by starting a free trial on Lynda.com. Once you’re ready to put your selling skills to the test, check out and see if any sales position opportunities align with your interests—the last thing you want to do is get stuck selling products or services you’re not interested in. However, by starting out your sales career as a side business idea, that gives you the flexibility to easily change courses if you ever need to.
13. Affiliate Sales and Marketing.
If you already have a website that’s driving in targeted traffic, a great way to make passive income from the content you’re already creating as an easy side business idea, is through affiliate marketing. ShareASale, Rakuten, Clickbank, and Skimlinksare a few of the best affiliate networks and tools that can help you make money from the content you already produce, thus amplifying your side business idea income. Check out this extensive list by Justine Grey, covering the 59 Best Affiliate Programs for Business Bloggers to get some inspiration on how other bloggers are growing affiliate blogs from side business idea to full-time company.
14. Virtual Assistant.
Have a knack for staying organized? If you’re a jack of all trades, you should consider working as a virtual assistant as a side business idea. You can find great gigs on Elance, Indeed, or Upwork. It can be an awesome way to rub shoulders with some very important people, build up your professional network, grow your side business idea and you’ll have the added perk of being able to start this as a home based business idea. Becoming a virtual assistant can be a particularly great side business idea if your partner’s job means you’re constantly on the road—for example if you’re the husband or wife of a coach or athlete, which makes regular moving a way of life.
15. Tax Preparation.
It’s not the sort of side business idea that’s covered in glory, but someone needs to make sure all the numbers add up at the end of the year. Every business and most individuals need someone with the domain expertise to help prepare tax returns, especially time or resource-strapped small business owners. The Income Tax School provides an array of training programs that’ll certify you with tax prep in as little as 10 weeks, and once tax season rolls around you’ll be able to charge an average of $229 per return as a freelance tax preparer with this side business idea, reports CNBC.
16. Remote English Teacher/Tutor.
Teaching and tutoring English as a second language is a great way to make a solid side business idea work, not to mention opening doors for you to travel the world if you’d like. While full ESL (English as a Second Language) accreditation is recommended, as long as you’re a native speaker, there are people in countries such as Hong Kong or the UAE who are willing to pay upwards of $25/hr for you to teach them English via Skype. Indeed,Learn4Good and Remote.co often have remote english tutoring jobs posted, check back frequently. Then once you land that remote job, you’ll need somewhere more professional than your dining room table to meet with students—check out this post about how to find places to work remotely and you’ll officially graduate this side business idea into a full-time endeavor for yourself.
17. SAT Tutor.
If you had a knack for standardized tests and had no trouble acing the SAT, ACT or other college exams, why not start tutoring high schoolers as a side business idea? Parents of all economic backgrounds are more than willing to shell out upwards of $100/hr to the right tutor, if it means their son or daughter will get admitted to the college or university of their choice. See this quick checklist for starting an SAT tutoring business from the Work At Home Mom. Whitney over at Rookiemoms also has a cool story to share about a stay-at-home mom making $40/hr helping kids out with homework and turning it into a profitable side business idea.
18. Social Media Manager.
We’re all guilty of spending too much time on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest sometimes, so why not get paid to put your expertise to work as a side business idea? Lots of companies, especially startups or those in retail and travel—even influencers have heavy social media presences and are constantly in need of people to help build their brands online. You can find these types of opportunities on sites like Flexjobs and CareerBuilder and most employers on these websites are conditioned to working with people who operate these services as their side business idea.
Build your own social following and create a personal brand for yourself like Matt Nelson, founder of WeRateDogs has done (thus growing his following to more than 2.8 Million people), and countless opportunities will come your way for turning this side business idea into a full-time business.
19. Google Paid Ad Specialist.
If you know a thing or two about paid internet marketing and are comfortable with Google, a great way to make some extra income as a side business idea is to sign a freelance contract to manage a company’s Google Ad Campaigns, and gradually start bringing on more clients as your consulting business grows. Just be sure to brush up on all the right business slang and industry jargon that’s pervasive in the online marketing world before you launch unprepared into this side business idea.
20. Start a Blog.
Think blogging is no longer a viable source of income? Think again. Tens of thousands of bloggers, creating content on topics as diverse as scrapbooking, home cooking, travel, film, lifestyle, and more are launching self-employed careers thanks to a combination of email subscribers, affiliate marketing, blog sponsorships, and other revenue streams. Your first step is sharpening your writing abilities, understanding what your audience craves and learning how to write a blog post that drives traffic and brings you readers on a regular basis. Even blogging about tech gadgets and products you love can turn into a profitable side business. Take my friend Andy’s blog, AwesomeStuffToBuy for example. Or listen to my interview with Gaby Dalkin about how her journey to start a food blog as a side business idea.
If you want to speed up the process of building your blog, I recommend setting up quick, affordable and easy website hosting with a company like HostGator and then hiring a talented freelance designer or web developer on a high quality marketplace like Crew in order to free up more of your time to utilize on creating content, connecting with (and building) your audience. Then once you’ve been able to build a community around your blog, you’ll want to invest in really understanding your readers—so that you can give them more of what they want, which is where online tools and services like Quantcast come into play.
Yes, even the lowly PowerPoint presentation requires outside consulting every now and then—especially if it’s not your forte. I know I would happily outsource the visual layout of my presentation decks for work meetings, investor pitches and lectures. Tobias Schelle of 24Slides is living proof that you can turn your skills at slideshow presentation design into a legit side hustle business idea—and potentially earn up to $20 a slide for your time and talents.
22. Travel Consultant.
If you love to travel and find yourself randomly searching for airfare sales or browsing Lonely Planet, why not carve out a niche for yourself as a private travel agent? Take my friend, Mark Jackson’s lead with what he’s doing to build a travel consulting side hustle business idea. Start with word of mouth recommendations from friends who know they can count on you for the cheapest flights, create a Facebook or LinkedIn group to invite people who want to stay on top of the latest deals and keep giving them updates on how to make your dream trip a reality.
23. Landing Page Specialist.
If you have a way with words and know how to make the keyword-friendly, beautifully designed, SEO-optimized landing pages, why not charge other companies for your services and turn it into a money-making side hustle business idea? Even a short landing page is worth a couple hundred bucks in most cases, and so much more if you know how to pitch well. If you want to get started as a landing page specialist or freelance copywriter, check out Neville Medhora’s awesome post on How to Become a Copywriter with No Experience.
24. Interior Design Consultant.
Someone out there is remodeling their kitchen and needs to know which shade of granite will match best with mahogany flooring. That someone will often be happy to pay you for your advice, especially if you’re the kind of person that subscribes to websites like Contemporist.
It’s not exactly a way to make consistent great money, but housesitting—exactly what it sounds like—is a fantastic way to live in exotic locales around the world without paying a dime in rent. Did I mention it’s a way to travel and live rent free? Here’s a list of four great websites from the legendary Nomadic Matt, to start your housesitting side hustle search.
No, babysitting isn’t just for teenagers and college students. Quite on the contrary, if you call yourself an Au Pair instead, you can make some pretty good side hustle money working nights and weekends if you don’t mind the hours.
27. Property Manager.
Know someone who rents out property to others? Perhaps they could use a hand managing their property. If so, you can make a decent amount of money on this side hustle with relatively little work on your part. It’ll take some hustling and the willingness to be flexible with your schedule, as you’ll be responsible for collecting rent checks, managing repairs and improvements, and simply being on call for emergencies. But, a property manager is essential for most real estate investors.
28. Sell on Etsy.
Have a talent for crafting or creating other handmade goods? From bracelets to phone cases, rings, furniture, and more, Etsy is one of the world’s largest independent marketplaces that’s perfect for anyone who is creative and willing to sell their handmade creations. As long as you have the space, this can make for one of the best home business ideas that can be started as a side hustle with a very limited investment. Consider these 5 steps to starting an Etsy store, from Handmadeology. Then, after you’re able to build your brand and grow your own audience, you can start an eCommerce site of your own and retain a larger portion of the revenue from your product sales.
29. Ebay Sales.
Similar to selling on Amazon, eBay is a place to make money selling just about anything you can think of as a side hustle, with the added excitement of using the auction selling model to sometimes get way more than you expected for that antique baseball card you picked up at a local street fair.
30. Fiverr Gigs.
Fiverris a great place for first-time freelancers who might not have tons of experience and want to build up a portfolio of their work. You’ll be able to complete simple tasks ranging from logo design, to creating animations, or even drawing a company logo on your forehead. While this side hustle idea won’t be growing into a million dollar startup for you, it can be a platform for funding your next big idea. Want to learn more about Fiverr’s history and how to get the most out of selling on the platform? Listen to my interview with Fiverr CEO Micha Kaufman.
31. College Admissions Essay Editor.
If editing and advising college students on how to write compelling 500 word essays on topics such as “You were just invited to speak at the White House. Write your speech,” seems like a compelling way to spend your free time, trust me—tons of parents will pay you to edit admissions essays and offer constructive feedback for their children. Be careful not to blur the ethical line of actually writing their essays, but serving as an editor to help them convey their message can become a great side hustle business idea that has the potential to spread by word-of-mouth referral in your community.
32. Portrait Photographer.
If you own a camera, starting a freelance portrait photography business could be a very natural way to make a side income. Start with doing free shoots for friends and family to build up a strong online portfolio, get familiar with your gear and the editing process, then you’ll be able to get paid for photographing professional head shots and celebratory family moments as your side hustle business idea. Get started by checking out this men’s portrait photography class that regularly broadcasts for free on CreativeLive.
33. Wedding Photographer.
Wedding photographers command premium rates. After all, you are capturing one of a couple’s most important life moments. Many professional wedding photographers charge between $2,500 – $10,000 (or more) to shoot a wedding, a very lucrative side hustle business idea. Check out the Complete Wedding Photography Experience to get up to speed on everything you need to launch a successful wedding photography business.
34. Online Dating Consultant.
Believe it or not, some people have such a difficult time at dating, that they can’t even handle the online component of it. If you’re a smooth talker, why not leverage that skill into a paid match maker? People are paying.
35. Writing Erotic Fiction.
Werewolves, stepbrothers, and tentacles—the demand is high. As odd as it may sound, if you’ve got the imagination (and a clever pseudonym), you can make upwards of $5,000 a month writing erotic fiction in your free time as a side hustle business idea.
36. Writing Greeting Cards.
Fancy yourself a poet? You can earn $300 for every poem you write that this greeting card company publishes—not a bad side hustle if you’ve got a way with words and aren’t afraid of rejection on poems that aren’t a good fit.
37. WordPress Website Consultant.
Countless small businesses start out their web presence using a WordPress hosted website before needing to upgrade to other solutions for various reasons. Many of them will pay several hundreds of dollars for someone to get them set up online. If you have the patience to learn how to do it yourself, it’s an extremely valuable skill and lucrative side hustle idea.
38. Drive for Uber or Lyft.
Driving for one of the two globally expanding app-centric taxi alternative services, Uber or Lyft can still be a fairly lucrative way to earn money as a side hustle on nights and weekends—working only when you want. But before you dive head first into this side hustle idea, do your homework and calculate the costs of extra gas, mileage, tires, wear & tear and usage on your vehicle.
39. Rent Your Car on Turo.
If you own a car but barely use it, you can make some easy cash as an effortless side hustle by renting it out on Turo. Before you freak out, know that there’s a $1 Million insurance policy on all cars, plus drivers are prescreened, so you can have peace of mind.
40. Art Collector.
Not to be confused with hoarding, this one takes a lot of time, patience, and passion. If you have an eye for good art, it’s easy to get in on the ground level by visiting the studio department at your local university—though don’t expect to get rich overnight with this side hustle business idea. Many art students are more than happy to sell their work for a bargain, and in as little as a few years, there’s a chance that piece you bought for a couple hundred bucks may be worth well into the thousands.
41. Catering Business.
EatWith is a great way to test the waters as a chef for your side hustle business idea, and if you have enough rave reviews you might be able to turn your knife skills into a full-time business.
42. Develop an App.
Sometimes it seems like there’s an app for everything. Yet somehow, new ones keep popping up and selling for lots of money, all the time. If you spot a niche that hasn’t been filled to its potential just yet, and you can learn the coding skills (or know someone who already has them), you could be on to something. Today, it’s even possible to build an app without any coding skills whatsoever. Just make sure you validate your app idea before jumping too far in. Even if your app idea doesn’t pan out to be a best-seller, you’ll still pick up valuable skills—and perhaps you can try your hand at diving into a freelancer career by becoming a product manager.
You don’t need to have a degree in journalism to be a reporter these days, and there are many news websites that can always use a bit of help on getting local coverage. Some of them, such as The Examiner or HuffPost, will compensate contributors based on ad revenue generated per article written—a great incentive to provide compelling content for your side hustle business idea.
44. Patent Something.
This side hustle idea isn’t for most, but consider Kia Silverbrock who has been granted over 4,665 US Patents in his lifetime (so far). You don’t have to invent the wheel to make good money from your patented concepts—just make sure that youridea can be produced affordably, or it will never stand up against a lawsuit in the future.
45. Buy and Sell Domain Names.
Domain name trading has been around for the last couple decades, and while most slam-dunk names have long been sold off (Insure.com went for $16 Million in 2009) there’s still plenty of others that you can get your hands on for relatively cheap and broker as your side hustle business idea. But beware: some experts doubt the long-term viability of this business, so you shouldn’t quit your day job just to put all your effort into this one without some successes already in the bag. To get you started, here are some tips from GoDaddy, arguably the world’s largest and most famous repository of domain names. Imagine owning desirable domain names for the next decade’s worth of innovative companies.
46. Start a Popup Shop.
While the barriers to entry for a retail shop can be very high, one way to keep costs down and limit your time investment while you keep your full-time job, is to set up a weekend popup shop. More of whatever it is you’re selling—donuts, clothing, antique baseball cards, or anything else—will stay in your pockets instead of going to pay for operating expenses such as rent or utilities by choosing to side hustle this idea with a short-term rental. This guide from Shopify will give you a step-by-step process for getting your popup shop off the ground.
47. Brew Your Own Beer.
Like drinking beer? Why not try making it yourself? With patience and skill you might end up brewing something that others are willing to pay to drink. Pick up an easy-to-use starter kit from Mr. Beer online, invest the time it’ll take to perfect your craft, make a unique brew and start shopping it around to friends & family to see what they think of this side hustle business idea.
48. Freelance Proofreading and Editing.
As long as there is still the written word, there will always be editors. Freelance editing and proofreading not only pays a decent hourly wage, it also gives you the chance to read about potentially interesting topics too. What’s more, freelance writing & editing can afford you a lifestyle that lets you travel the world as a digital nomad. You can find lots of job postings from companies and individuals in need of writing, proofreading, and editing services on Upwork, which makes this a high-demand side hustle business idea.
49. Buy Used Electronics and Refurbish Them.
Many people give up on their faulty laptops, mobile phones, or cameras without even looking into the cause of their malfunctions. If you have the skills to fix them, consider starting a side hustle refurbishing and reselling used electronics.
50. Data Analysis.
Got a thing for numbers? Plenty of companies need to hire talented contractors who are good at data analysis. Upwork and Digiserved are but a two of many websites that are great for freelancers with an analytical prowess, looking for extra work as a side hustle around their full-time gigs.
51. Acquire Parts from Electronics Stores.
There is a treasure trove of valuable items being thrown away by big box stores around the world. Electronics stores toss out everything from printer cartridges to tablets, and if you’ve got the stomach for rummaging around in dumpsters you can easily make money rummaging than you ever thought possible.
52. Freelance Writing & Copywriting.
Every website owner (including myself) hires copywriters to write content for things like about pages, FAQ’s, or blog posts. Hourly wages for novice copywriters are not very high, but with some experience and a growing portfolio, you can become a freelance writer today and soon be charging more than you make at your full-time job if you find the right clients and brand yourself as an expert. Check out one of my most talented friends, Jory Mackay, for an example of someone who’s doing a great job of positioning himself as a premium service-provider with his freelance writing side hustle. Then when you’re ready to start cold emailing potential clients, pick up my free downloadable freelance proposal template and get started today.
53. Licensed Product Distributor.
It doesn’t happen overnight, but licensing a foreign product for sale domestically, can lead to a big payoff down the road. Invest intelligently, sell a product you believe in, and you can reap the rewards for years to come.
54. Fill Out Online Surveys.
It’s not very engaging, or mentally stimulating, but online surveys do pay out (a little), believe it or not. Just don’t expect to make bank with this side hustle business idea—I recommend combining it with another source of side income and turning to surveys in your downtime.
55. Airbnb Host.
Not only is Airbnb a great way to make money by renting out your spare bedroom or living room couch, but you also have the benefit of meeting new people and making new friends if that’s your kind of thing. You can even rent out an entirely new apartment just to manage as an Airbnb side hustle, but don’t make the mistake of thinking this will be a passive source of income—you’re on call whenever you have a guest and you’ll always need to keep the place clean for incoming visitors.
Yoga is getting ever more popular, which means yoga instructors are more in demand than ever. Pursue emotional and physical balance with others, during your free time while helping your bank balance, too.
58. Start a YouTube Channel.
If you can create value-driven, entertaining video content and grow your subscriber base to a few thousand subscribers, your videos can start generating pretty substantial income from all the ads being displayed on your videos. Many YouTube users make well into the millions each year, so there’s clear potential to take this from side hustle business idea to millionaire with the right combination of content, audience, skills, relationships and timing.
If your mastery of another language is good enough to have the grammar and spelling down, translating is a great side hustle business to set up for yourself and can be done remotely. Flexjobshas literally hundreds of freelance, remote translator jobs available right now.
60. Tour Guide.
Live in a destination where travelers frequently visit? If you love meeting new people from around the world and also love the city you live in, starting your own local tour business will give you both of those perks. Take a unique spin on your local tour business like Erik from Vantigo. He was starting hisVW van tour business in San Francisco as just a side hustle business idea while he was still working a full-time job, and grew it to being a sustainable source of full-time income before quitting—now he’s running a multiple van tour business for himself.
61. Music Instructor.
Do you play a musical instrument well enough to teach it to others? How about taking your skills at producing music or sound design and teaching others based on your experience? Private music instructors in all disciplines charge upwards of $20-100/hr (or more depending upon skill and experience), and you don’t necessarily have to do them in person, either. This makes for a great side hustle idea that can channel your passion for music into profits.
62. Stock Photographer.
If you have a fondness for taking pictures of smiling families or laughing children blowing bubbles, consider becoming a stock photographer and selling your images to a stock photo company like Unsplash, ShutterStock and iStockPhoto as a side hustle. You’ll get royalties every time someone licenses an image you’ve submitted. To really be successful, build your own photography website to be able to showcase your portfolio and start getting private corporate work.
Ghostwriting pays pretty well, and if you’re talented at researching and creating great content within a certain subject domain, you can quickly build a roster of high-paying clientele. Writers like Jeff Haden have created very lucrative careers for themselves by writing for business executives and CEO’s—and Jeff also started his ghostwriting career as a side hustle idea outside of his full-time job as a factory manager.
64. Online Subcontracting.
Once you’ve established yourself in any number of freelance verticals online, spending your time focusing just on sales (booking freelance contracts with high-value clients) and then subcontracting your work out to other freelancers can help significantly grow your client list, and revenue generating possibilities.
Take the time to develop your skills at either making your own music, or becoming a pro at mixing, and your side hustle of dj-ing local events could turn into a much bigger business. Though you’ll first need to command a solid knowledge of sound design, mixing and music production before expecting to land your first gig.
66. Clothing Alterations and Tailoring.
Fashion, style, and grooming continue to be a lucrative side hustle business. If you know how to mend clothes, then you have a growing market of budget-conscious and/or personalization-obsessed customers. Entrepreneur says you need around two thousand dollars to start a decent side hustle business idea in this niche but there’s no harm in starting smaller and growing from there, as long as you can make magic with needle and thread.
67. Teach DIYs.
Nothing beats teaching more novice learners about your passion, hobby, or craft. Explore dozens of DIY portals (such as DIY.org, DIY Network, Instructables and Mahalo) to get ideas on how to earn a healthy side income just by showing others how to do the things you love. You can also sift through the countless ad-supported YouTube channels that teach just about anything from guitar strumming to 3D printing.
It’s funny how much baking can relate to making money. Start bringing in some side income by kneading flour, mastering the oven, and appeasing everyone’s sweet tooth. While some experts have already turned baking into their sole “bread and butter,” you need not leave your day job just yet. Depending on your experience, you can start by doing something simple on the side like Grandma’s nostalgic cookies before heading on to offer exquisite artisanal fare.
69. Being a Task Rabbit.
If you don’t mind doing other people’s chores, then TaskRabbit may be the right side hustle for you. Earn money doing odd jobs like walking your neighbor’s dog or mowing Mr. Smith’s lawn. Running errands not your style? Tell that to the top taskers on the portal who reportedly earn as much as $7000 a month.
70. Freelance Content Marketing.
From personal experience as a freelance content marketer, I can vouch for the profitability in this industry. I grew my side hustle into a $160,000/yr business before quitting my day job—all you need is the right skills and experience to back it up. With startups, established brands, and even notable influencers needing to build credibility and grow their brands, professionals who can serve up compelling content enjoy a huge demand for their services. And, since brands will always need high quality content to bring in new customers, your skills will always remain an asset to invest in—especially since the nature of creating a content marketing strategy is an ever-evolving one. Start by tapping into your existing network and tracking down local small business owners who could benefit from your marketing tactics, do a bang up job, ask for referrals and grow from there to the point where you’re doing blogger outreach and spreading out to a wider market.
71. Freelance Ebook Writing.
If you’ve always wanted to publish your own book, there isn’t a better time than now to do so. That’s because access to self-publishing tools and marketplaces has never been easier and more affordable. This eBook writer currently earns up to a couple of thousand bucks each month from six ebooks she published; while you can reportedly demand around $1000 per eBook project serving as a ghost writer. My good friend, Caroline Beaton used freelance writing as a side hustle business to eventually go from secretary to self-employed, while focusing on her own personal development and looking inward to discover what she’s truly passionate about.
72. Investing Your Money.
If you keep your money hidden in the attic or earning close to nothing in a savings account, you might want to consider putting it to better use through smart investing. Sure, there are plenty dangers to look out for, but most personal finance experts will advise you to start learning about the stock market if you want to grow your wealth.
73. Investing Others’ Money.
Incidentally, helping others grow their wealth is also a good way to grow your own financial worth on the side. If you have stock market and finance credentials, then you can earn freelance commissions or consulting fees, advising clients on how to get the best returns for their investments as a lucrative side hustle idea if you can get results.
74. Accounting and Bookkeeping.
Many small companies and startups now outsource jobs that aren’t part of their core business (such as HR, admin, and accounting), which makes this skill set a great opportunity for starting a side hustle that engages your number prowess. Because companies always need to track their cash flow, freelance accountants and bookkeepers can really benefit from the increasing demand for part-time help.
75. Building a Niche Website.
Find an audience for your passion or hobby and you’re all set to monetize something you love via a niche website as a side hustle. That of course, is easier said than done, something not intended for the faint of heart. Prepare to invest a lot of your time, but if you can hurdle the steep challenges and positively answer a few key questions on whether the website idea you’re thinking about is profitable, then you can begin building it.
76. Car Washing and Detailing.
A lot of car owners simply don’t have time to personally care for their vehicles, much less make them sparkle. With simple equipment such as car shampoo, polishing wax, tire black, sponges, a pail and a sturdy hose, you can start earning a decent side hustle income by making cars look fresh in your free time after work and on weekends.
Providing care for the elderly often requires a broader set of credentials. These may include licenses, training certificates, business permits, and tax forms depending on which state you wish to operate, the level of care you intend to provide, and whether you plan on running a formal business or just hiring yourself out as an independent worker as a side hustle. If you’re already giving unpaid care to an elderly relative or friend, you may want to review Medicaid provisions for some compensation. In all cases, you need genuine affection for the elderly, a lot of common sense, and good knowledge of first aid, CPR, and elderly care basics.
78. Carpet Cleaning.
Carpets make your home warm and cozy. But they also tend to gather dust, grime, stains, allergens and bugs over time. You can tap into this opportunity by launching a carpet cleaning business or serving as an independent contract cleaner in your free time. Either way, you’ll need to invest in proper equipment such as vacuum cleaners, carpet brushes, and cleaning chemicals. Look into the possibility of renting equipment for a full weekend and lining up 5-10 clients to service, to offset your rental costs. If you turn a healthy profit, you’ll eventually be able to invest in owning your own equipment and increase your margins, thus going from side hustle to serious business.
79. House Cleaning.
If you want to broaden your services and earn more, you can opt to make the entire house look neat and clean. House cleaning services cover carpets, floors, lawns, garages, windows, walls, and roofs, requiring a whole range of cleaning tools. You can hire maids and janitors to do the actual cleaning while you handle administrative and customer service tasks. Or, you can start small by actually getting your hands dirty as a contractor, learning on the job before launching your own cleaning operations with the help of cleaning business management tools like Swept. Check out Cleaning Zoom’s ultimate guide to starting a cleaning business.
80. Child Care.
Many families with kids, including single-parents, have very limited time resources, creating a demand for part-time child care providers. If you love kids and have some spare time, you can earn plenty of side hustle income by looking after children while their parents are away. Just be sure to identify the particular age group you’re comfortable caring for and you’re all set after any necessary certifications. Establishing a home-based daycare center capable of servicing six or more kids is also a lucrative option.
81. Computer Repair.
Employed techies planning to earn extra money as a side hustle can leverage their software and hardware skills by offering home-based computer repair services. If this rings a bell, you can start with a modest one-man tech team before envisioning a scaled-up operation as massive as Geek Squad. Remember, you can provide home service locally as well as offer remote support through online messaging and video calling services.
If you’ve got the attitude, there should be a product or service out there looking for the right model to promote their brand. You can sign up with a large agency, find a freelance agent, or look for your own modeling gigs as an independent talent. Since modeling is a complex field, get all the advice you need before jumping right in and find a mentor who can guide you through some of the early challenges before establishing your brand. Depending on your preference, you can specialize in a single media format such as video or still images, to build a compelling portfolio.
83. Computer Training and Lessons.
Everyone (even kids and retirees) need to have some level of technical know-how to stay competitive and appreciate the marvels of the digital age. Just observe how learning sites like Codecademy, Treehouse, and Udacity continue to grow and you’ll understand the urgency of getting computer training for our generation. If you’re a techie, you can cash in on this need by offering lessons and tutorials within your neighborhood or across cyberspace through portals like YouTube or Udemy as a side hustle idea. You can even set up your own tutorial site with an interface for online payments.
84. Contract Customer Service.
Some firms outsource their customer service operations and many of these companies accept home-based contractors. You can start by signing up on freelancing sites such as Upwork. If you’re already a CSR specialist with management skills, then you can form and lead a virtual team online and engage clients as a bona fide customer service company or, provide customer service training to such teams as well as individuals.
85. Dog Walking.
Dogs are amazing. But, owners aren’t always at home to take them for a walk. If you’re a canine fan like I hope you are, this great side hustle business idea can net you a regular profit by just taking some adorable pups for a stroll around the park. With pet-crazed, yet busy Americans having more pooches around, dog walking services have become a thriving industry in some U.S. cities. In fact, there’s already an app called Wag that links up dog walkers and pet owners.
86. Real Estate Sales Consultant.
The real estate market is on the rebound (for today) and people are buying and selling properties in many locations across the U.S. That means a lot of opportunities for professionals who know how to navigate the legal, financial, and commercial aspect of real estate. If you consider yourself an expert in the subject, it won’t be a walk in the park (hehe), but you can earn significant additional side hustle income as a home-based consultant.
87. Making Custom Furniture.
Turning your favorite craft or hobby into a revenue-generating business easily counts among the most fulfilling experiences anyone can have. Just take a look at what Jacob Huss of Soteria Designs is doing wit his hobby of hand-building furniture and wood jewelry. With more and more people demanding a higher degree of personalization in just about anything they own or use, count yourself lucky if your craft happens to be the creation of custom furniture. Not only is the real estate sector regaining its footing, the number of style-conscious customers is also on the rise.
Earning money on GigWalk is similar to working on Task Rabbit—not a bad side hustle idea if you’ve got the free time. You get to choose from an amusingly diverse range of jobs from taking snapshots of restaurant menus to counting the items arrayed on supermarket racks. It won’t make you rich though, with payouts tending to congregate in the lower half of their $3-to-$100 range. But, if you’re looking for some sustainable side income, it can’t hurt doing a strange but fun errand and getting a tip at the end. When you’re bored or a little short on cash, you can access GigWalk anytime, anywhere via their mobile app. Meanwhile, all the jobs specifically vetted for you will be within reach (ideally, just a brisk walk away).
90. Home Appraisal.
A real estate appraisal business can be operated from home, on a part-time basis, making for a fun side hustle. A perfect option if you want to keep your day job while earning extra on the side. You won’t need a college degree to start one, but you’ll need bankable appraiser credentials (including relevant training and professional licenses), strong knowledge of the sector, and a growing network of industry players including mortgage brokers, real estate agents, banks, and fellow appraisers that’ll want to utilize your services.
91. Human Billboard.
If you don’t mind parading yourself around in public places, and enjoy a little attention, then working as a human billboard can pay a surprising amount of dividends. Renting out your beard, for example can earn you as much as $5 a day while having a brand logo tattooed on your shaven head for five years could pay as much as $7,000—though this type of earning opportunity is admittedly rare. This is definitely not for the faint of heart, and is a little extreme for me, but nonetheless it’s been done as a side hustle for many people. You can start by holding a placard or wearing a sandwich board. If you think this is a good business idea for yourself, you can go all the way and turn it into a full on home business.
92. Purchasing an Existing Website.
Websites aren’t too dissimilar to stocks. Many are junk, but some can generate value for you. That’s why, like stocks, they are bought and sold all the time. You can buy and sell websites as a side hustle in the hope of generating future earnings based on their user traffic, current revenue intake, domain name, or some other factors that might be a hidden cash cow everyone else has overlooked. Interested? Check out marketplaces like Flippa and Flipping Enterprises to learn more.
We all wear clothes (at least some of the time). Which, of course, makes the business of cleaning soiled laundry a hit. In fact, the self-service laundromat industry in the US is worth more than $3 billion, with many related businesses such as a mobile app laundry service, a real rolling mobile laundry service, and home laundry pickup & delivery services springing up each year. Here’s one way you can cash in on the trend as a side hustle idea.
94. Junk Removal Service.
As the saying goes, one person’s trash is another’s treasure. Without people cleaning up everybody else’s junk, the world would be a lot messier than it already is. The job might not be glamorous, but you get to make the world a cleaner place while earning extra side income. To start, you’ll need a sturdy second-hand truck and standard equipment like shovels, wheelbarrows, sledgehammers, rakes, and garbage cans.
95. Becoming a Notary Public.
Public notaries primarily serve as validators of, and impartial witnesses in public legal documents, especially those related to affidavits, oaths, deeds, estates, special-powers-of-attorney, and business agreements. Depending on the state, a full-time notary public earns an average annual salary of $36,000, and it’s a great business to do as a side hustle as you bring in money through other ways. If you want to get started, here are the requirements and steps you need to consider in the US.
96. Wedding Planning.
Like birthdays, marriages happen all the time. Which means you can treat weddings as a recurring fountain of business opportunities: wedding dresses and coats, jewelers, food caterers, venue providers, photographers and videographers, performers, flower shops, travel agencies, souvenir crafts, and a host of other ventures. Now imagine if you can form a networks of these service providers so you can offer engaged couples a range of hassle-free wedding packages. The process is certainly fun (and time-consuming), but as a side hustle the pay can be pretty great.
97. Event and Party Planning.
Being a wedding specialist works well for top-notch players, but being a generalist also has its benefits. Event and party planners leverage their network of service providers to cover not only weddings, but also seminars, corporate events, birthdays, baptisms, concerts, conferences, holiday parties, and other events. Here are some tips if you want to run a part-time event planning business at home as a side hustle idea. And here’s a very honest look into the upside and downside of the trade.
98. Becoming a Personal Chef.
Busy schedules can stress people out. It can also disrupt family life to the oint that busy parents and homework-laden kids barely have time to prepare decent dinners and weekend meals. Hence, the surprising demand for part-time family chefs. If cooking healthy and delicious meals is your thing, then this lucrative side hustle business idea can supplement your regular income by helping feed busy homes.
99. Pet Sitting.
I mean come on, who wouldn’t be interested in this side hustle idea? Getiting paid to take care of a cute pup sounds like a dream. The prevalence of unattended pets is another side effect of busy life, creating job opportunities for people with time, patience, and affection to spare. Just check out DogVacay and Rover to see what I mean. Would the payout be worth it if you try? One person in New York earns $3,300 a month just pet-sitting for busy animal lovers.
100. Pet Grooming.
If that isn’t enough, you can expand your services to include pet grooming as an extra side hustle. To do that, you’ll need to have relevant training, an operating license depending on your location, and pet grooming equipment. According to PayScale, pet groomers have an average salary range of $17,600 to $48,500. Not bad as a side gig if you can find a way to get in most of your clients on the weekends.
101. Pool Cleaning.
Spending a leisurely afternoon in a swimming pool can be a lot of fun. But cleaning it can be a pain in the neck. Hence, most pool owners hire people to do the cleaning for them. If you need extra cash and don’t mind getting physical, then pool cleaning is a viable side hustle business for you.
I’ve been getting so much feedback with great business ideas from my community and in the comments, so I frequently add to this post. If you have side hustle ideas you’d like to share (or personal experience with a side hustle of your own), please add to them in the comments below!
102. Private Labeling and Selling Products on Amazon.
Counted amongst the most valuable tech giants, Amazon is also a massive global market where virtually anyone can cash in on the rising tide of eCommerce. But, like everything else that involves money, you have to do quite a bit of work to earn it. In this case, you need to do tons of research (looking for generic products such as clocks, key chains and mugs to attach your brand to) as well as a sensible selling strategy to milk profits from your private label side hustle. Check out how digital marketer Neil Patel recently did this as a public experiment right here.
Do you love sports? Officiating non-professional games held at community parks and college sport fields can be an exciting way to earn extra income as a side hustle idea on nights and weekends.
104. Selling on TeeSpring.
T-shirts can be a viable path toward creating an automated side hustle that makes money for you while you sleep. Even Bloomberg and Forbes feature stories from entrepreneurs who’ve done just that. Want to learn how to make it happen? You can find TeeSpring selling walkthroughs here, here and here.
105. Build Custom Software for Freelance Clients.
Software drives businesses today. This is a fact not lost on individuals and companies attempting to earn a profit, make a name for themselves, or simply get things done. As a result, the job outlook for software developers will be much sunnier than prospects for other occupations. In fact, it won’t take you long to find a good-paying software development project as a side hustle on sites like Upwork, Guru.com, and Freelancer. LinkedIn also recently launched their brand new freelancing platform, ProFinder which has a dedicated section just for hiring talented software developers.
106. Coaching Sports Teams.
Nothing beats playing your favorite game. But getting paid for coaching a sports team and staying close to the action is the next best thing. Not only will you learn new skills, you’ll earn money getting your team into shape. The median pay for sports coaches clock in at $30,400 according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Expect to have only a slice of that if you’re signing up for part-time coaching as a side hustle only.
107. T-Shirt Printing Business.
As I’ve already covered with TeeSpring, the T-shirt retailing business is worth millions of dollars. But what if you want to do the manufacturing side of things? T-shirt printing turns out to be quite rewarding, but can quickly consume much of your side hustle time—so know what you’re getting into. This multi-billion dollar industry counts big corporate factories as well as home-based part-time entrepreneurs.
108. Vehicle Advertising.
Yes, you can turn your car into a money-maker by driving for Uber and Lyft, but there are other ways to convert mileage into money. One way is to do vehicle advertising, a potential side hustle income source of anywhere between $100 to $600 per month. Whether you own a compact sedan or a full-sized bus, your vehicle’s exterior space is prime real estate for ads. Check Wrapify, carvertise, and similar sites for more details.
109. Window Cleaning Services.
From the inside looking out, I want to see the world as clearly as possible. And so do a lot of homeowners and office managers. Now that creates a demand for window cleaners, especially for office buildings. If you want to try it out as a side hustle, here’s a step-by-step guide on how to start a window-washing business at home.
110. Working on Mechanical Turk.
Mechanical Turk operates much like TaskRabbit and GigWalk: it’s a corner on cyberspace where Amazon gathers tasks to be done, people willing to do them, and people willing to pay for them. On Mechanical Turk, you get to do the oddest jobs you can imagine as a side hustle, made possible by a parallel online universe that runs on hits, visits, surveys, reviews, pins, likes, CPCs, reads, and other metrics. But don’t get too ambitious. The small sums being paid out to human Mechanical Turk users rarely add up to anything seriously substantial, even if you invest most of your spare time into it. It’s a better opportunity for internationally-based people with internet access and lower costs of living than in the US. Here’s one person’s account of his former life as a Mechanical Turk.
111. Yard Work Services.
A large proportion of homeowners and small businesses have lawns to tend to. Many turn to independent providers of yard work services to take care of their lawn care woes. To start and sustain a yard work services side hustle business, you need training, equipment, and a growing network of customers. A full-time landscaping and groundskeeping worker earns a median wage of around $25,000, while those working on the side during evenings and weekends can expect to make substantially less.
112. Public Speaking.
If you have the gift of gab, public speaking is a worthwhile side hustle business to pursue. Many authors, medical practitioners, scientists, artisans, politicians, and other subject matter experts earn extra income by delivering speeches, seminars, and presentations. Professional motivational speakers earn an average annual salary of around $90,000 with just that portion of their business.
113. College Counseling.
College counsellors come in all shapes and sizes. Their primary duty is to help guide students through an important period in their lives. Some counselors focus on admissions, career advice, financial aid, athletics, extracurricular activities, and other concerns. There are institutions looking out for part-time college counselors, making for a fantastic side hustle, or you can even start your own practice and charge anywhere from $25-$100+ per hour for your consultative services if you’re well-versed on the subject.
114. Making Seasonal Decorations.
Christmas, Halloween, Easter, Yuletide, Hanukkah, Valentine’s Day, Chinese New Year, 4th of July, Mother’s Day. There are a ton of traditional holidays that count as solid reasons to start a side hustle of crafting and selling seasonal decorations. After all, people and businesses pay good money for them. In fact, total sales of Christmas trees in the U.S. alone amounted to a whopping $1.04 billion in 2014. And you still have holiday lights, nativity scenes, crafted hangings, baskets, wreaths, and other decorations to cover.
The holidays do bring cheer, but when winter comes, so does the snow. Thick, traffic-hindering piles of it. Snow can be fun for a while but somebody has to get rid of it for our lifestyles to continue onward. Make extra money on the side from home by offering snow and ice removal services.
116. Selling Handmade Clothing and Garments.
With the rise of online craft marketplaces like Etsy, people with decent artisanal skills like sewing and woodworking have an always-open market to sell their products. If you’ve always wanted to design and make clothes by hand, then you can start turning those fashion ideas into real, hand-sewn garments and make some money on the side.
117. Antique Refurbishing.
The antique market is not as lively as it used to be. But there’s still money to be had from the industry if you love rare old stuff and possess the skill of restoring them to their former glory. To start an antique refurbishing business at home, you’ll likely need a few thousand dollars to build out a basic workshop and stock it with all of the right treatments and materials. Start small by borrowing around what you can, and learning the basics of the trade as a side hustle before investing in a ton of equipment.
118. Dance Instructor.
Most people, even those many won’t admit it, love moving their bodies. It’s also a great workout. If at some point in your life, you had to hang your dancing shoes for a more sensible office job, there’s nothing stopping you from earning money as a side hustle idea with this passion project. Part-time dance instructors get a fraction of the pie their full-time peers enjoy, but it can add up to hundreds each week if you’re consistent.
119. Part-time Bicycle Delivery.
Believe it or not, this freelance bike messenger makes more money than some people glued to their work desks. You won’t rake in a whopping $50,000 as this guy does by just doing this in your free time, but you’ll surely get a piece of the action. Even Uber is trying out a blueprint for a delivery service, and companies like WunWun and Amazon are stepping up their efforts to expand same-day delivery. If you have a decent bicycle, those pair of pedals might just earn you a healthy side hustle income.
120. Home-Based Makeup Services.
If you have a talent for helping people look their best, and know how to mesmerize with eyeliners and turn heads with lipsticks, consider using your beauty skills to create a profitable side business. For under $2000, you can start your own make-up artist business which can make for the foundation of a potentially lucrative side hustle.
121. Voice-Over Talent.
If you speak like James Earl Jones or Scarlett Johansson, quite a number of digital publishers (including game developers, animated film-makers, and training video producers) pay good money for voice talent and the time investment isn’t too intensive—making this a great side hustle idea. You can find these publishers looking for voice-over artists on sites like PeoplePerHour, Freelancer and Upwork.
122. Buying and Selling Cars.
Car flipping can be a fun way to turn your love for cars into a quick side business idea if you have the capital and a stomach for the inherent risk. Buying and selling cars is similar to other “buy low, sell high” business models, but the profit potential per hour invested is very high. According to Jeremy Fisher at 3HourFlip.com, the trick is to learn how to make car deals come to you, so you can minimize your time invested and maximize your profit on each flip.
123. Small Business Marketing Consultant.
If you have experience with marketing, SEO or a knack for getting people excited about the products and services you use on a regular basis, think about refining your skills and putting them to work as a small business marketing consultant in your region—especially if you can become a local SEO expert and can help local clients rank higher in their search results. Businesses of all sizes are in constant need of bringing in more customers, which is where you come in with your side hustle idea. Start by pitching some of these small business marketing ideas by Brian Downard and you’ll be sure to impress the first set of clients you begin working with in your area.
124. Professional Organizing.
If keeping your home organized comes naturally and you enjoy helping other people, consider becoming a professional organizer. As the need for baby boomers to start downsizing grows, you can use your organizing and decluttering skills to start making an industry standard $50-125 an hour with very little startup costs and some free expert advice from Jen Kilbourne. Believe it or not, pro organizers don’t just work with hoarders. More and more people are hiring professional organizers in order stop wasting time and money due to the stress of everyday disorganization. What’s even better, is that you can take this on as a side hustle during the nights and weekends when your clients will be at home.
125. Rent out your space.
People are always searching for one-of-a-kind venues for meetings, parties and weddings. Why not earn some extra money off the space you already have by renting it out for events? If you own a unique venue, like a studio, warehouse or boat, UK-based company Tagvenue will connect you with clients looking for somewhere special to host their event. Not a bad low-effort side hustle business idea.
126. Build a Chrome Extension.
With nearly 100,000 different custom extensions both free and paid available in Google Chrome’s marketplace, there’s a huge opportunity for creating a useful extension for people to use while browsing the web. One of my favorite Chrome extensions, Yet Another Mail Merge, which enables you to send bulk customized emails from within Gmail, gives you 50 free credits to send emails and gives you the chance to upgrade to a paid account to unlock more sending—a great upsell for the people who are getting value from the extension. Even free Chrome extensions like SVRF Tabs by SVRF, which replaces your new tab with stunning VR and 360º images, have the potential to bring in new users and eventually drive revenue for the startup’s core business. Another fun example from a friend of mine, Kathleen Garvin, is Hide images with NOPE, a Chrome extension that hides images on the web pages you’re browsing—to help eliminate distractions and keep you from seeing images (like those of certain politicians) that you may want to hide. This side hustle idea is particularly great because it also allows you to showcase your development skills—which can be used on a freelance basis alongside your Chrome extensions.
127. Floral Design.
Valentine’s day. Birthdays. Weddings. The list goes on and on—throughout the course of a year, there are dozens of occasions when people need to order flowers. What’s more is that once you’re up to speed in this business, your costs can stay relatively low if you know where to source your flowers, and typical margins are in the neighborhood of 300% (or more) on cut flowers which makes this a particularly profitable side hustle business idea in the right geographic area. Check out this amazing interview with floral designer, Sara Tedford of Ladybird Poppy to hear about how her floral design company started out as a side business idea of doing weddings and events for her friends and family.
Though certainly not for everyone, recycling the containers from products left strewn around on the ground can net you a surprisingly decent side income if you put in the time. Attending events like street fairs and outdoor concerts can be a great starting place. Put on a clean shirt, jeans, apply your sunscreen, grab a cheap pick-up tool like this one, sturdy plastic bags, and you can sell them for upwards of $4.00/pound on eBay.
129. Litter Removal for Local Businesses.
Like recycling, this side business idea requires the willingness to get your hands a little dirty. If you enjoy working outdoors, then you can make a pretty good side income cleaning up litter outside retail, office and industrial properties—especially for businesses that have large parking lots that need regular cleaning. Property management companies need their properties maintained litter free and you can do so with an on-foot service using inexpensive equipment like this cheap pick-up tool and a broom. Charge for your time at $35 – $50 per hour and bill your clients the same contract price each month. For even more on how to get started with a litter removal side business idea, check out Cleanlots.
130. Brand Ambassador.
It sounds too good to be true—getting paid to represent your favorite brands at events across the nation. But, if you have a friendly and outgoing personality (a growing social media following helps too), you can forge a potentially paid relationship as a brand ambassador with companies who want to reach other people within your community. As a Brand Ambassador, you do anything from demoing the latest technology, to passing out free swag at music festivals, to going on nationwide tours, to pumping people up as a mascot, and more. Depending upon the gig, you can expect to earn anywhere from $18-$100/hr. You can get started as early as this weekend by joining the Brand Ambassador Facebook group for your nearest major city (e.g. join the “Brand Ambassadors of Seattle” group if you live in/near Seattle). Once you’ve been approved to the group, you’ll get access to daily job postings from big brands and agencies with opportunities in your area. All you need to do is submit your resume and headshot to apply. For a step-by-step guide on how to get hired for the best gigs and the highest pay rates, I recommend checking out The Brand Ambassador Blueprint.
131. Career Coach.
Have you cracked the code for landing higher paying jobs at the drop of a hat? If you have a knack for helping your friends or co-workers navigate the process of finding their dream job, nailing an interview, negotiating a better salary or getting a raise at their current day job, other people would be willing to pay for your help too. Get started by sharing your advice on a personal blog and becoming a career coach on platforms like The Muse and Coach Me where there’s already an existing audience of people looking to make a move in their careers. From there, keep your focus on helping people get real results, building case studies to support this side hustle, and eventually charging for the results you’re delivering clients.
132. What Did I Miss?
Share in the comments if I’m missing any great side hustle business ideas that you can start while working full-time! Bonus points if you’ve already gotten started on it, and share the link to your website.