A side hustle is a way to make extra money outside your 9 to 5 job. For many people, it is not just about getting supplemental income, it is also about building a business that they really love and also about giving themselves the option of quitting their job eventually.
Why You Need A Side Hustle
First, it protects you financially in case you lose your job. No jobs are safe in this day and age.
Just imagine how you would feel if you lose your job which so happens to be your sole source of income. Or worse, you are the sole breadwinner of your family.
Second, it allows you to pay off your loan earlier.
Majority of people have a sizable student loan to pay off. If you get married and buy a house, you will also be looking at a large house loan on your balance sheet. Let’s not forget about credit card debt which is the worst kind of debt you should avoid at all times.
The earlier you pay off your loan, the earlier you can get a fresh start financially.
Third, it can help you build an emergency fund and also contribute towards your retirement fund.
Types Of Side Hustles
There are more than 101 ways to make extra money, but NOT ALL are worth putting your time and effort if your ultimate goal is to start a side hustle and grow it to give you the option of leaving your 9-5 job.
To me, there are two types of side hustles.
Type #1: Side hustles that will NEVER allow you to make enough to replace your day job and achieve the freedom you want.
Examples are taking paid surveys, mystery shopping, online teaching jobs, and food delivery.
Type #2: Side hustles that you can start and grow to earn a consistent income for yourself and even have the potential to surpass the income you are making from your job
Examples are starting an online store selling your own products, launching a service business around your skills(or other people’s skills) and building an expert business selling your expertise.
How To Find the Right One
To find the best side hustle for yourself, you need to ask yourself 3 important questions.
Question #1: What is your goal for your side hustle?
Is it just a short term gig to help you make extra money to pay bills?
Or is it a side business you want to build over the long term and give you the option of leaving your day job?
Question #2: How much time can you spend on your side hustle every day and every week?
Are you only free on the weekends to work on your side hustle?
Or do you have time throughout the day to work on your side hustle?
Some side hustles give you a lot of flexibility in terms of time.
Examples of such side hustles:
- Creating & Selling Online Course
- Part-Time Uber Driver
- Publishing Kindle eBooks
But others might demand more of your time and require you to be available during specific time period of the day.
Examples of such side hustles:
- Online Teaching Jobs
- Remote Customer Service Jobs
Question #3: How much money do you want to make from your side hustle?
Are you only trying to earn an extra $1000 dollars?
Or are you looking to ramp it up to replace your salary and more?
Some side hustles have limited earning potential while some side hustles allow you to earn much more because you can scale it over time.
For example, virtual assistant jobs and good delivery jobs are not going to make you a lot of money in the long term.
On the other hand, starting a business (e.g. an online store or digital marketing agency) on the side would have much higher earning potential.
So, depending on your situation, you can choose side hustles that best suit you.
If you are looking to start a side hustle that you can turn into a full-time business, then I have two types of side businesses to recommend.
To help save your time, I have also put together all the actionable steps that you can take and all the resources you need to do it right from the start.
So, here are the two types of businesses:
- Service Business: It refers to turning your own skills or other people’s skills into services that other businesses or individuals already want and are willing to pay for.
- Knowledge Business: It refers to packaging your expertise and knowledge into a product or service to help your clients get results that they desire. You can do so by offering coaching program and online courses.
First, let’s talk about how you can start a service business as a side hustle.
Selling services is one of the quickest ways to make extra money on the side.
It is all about solving problems and providing value for other people.
Just think back about what services you have paid for in the past.
What are those services?
Why did you pay for them?
Personally, I have paid for many services before.
Each of these services either helps me solve a problem or offers a benefit that I really want.
Here are some benefits most people would be willing to pay for:
- Save Time
- Make Money
- Save Money
- Personalized Service
- Remove Pain
- Have Fun
- Become Happier
- Impress Others
How You Can Get Started Step By Step
Method #1: Start A Service Business On The Side
There are just 3 simple steps to follow:
Step 1: Identify what service you can sell
Step 2: Find out who you can sell it to
Step 3: Close the sale
So, what skills do you have that can be turned into a service that is already in demand?
Before you start telling yourself that you don’t have any sell-able skills, I want you to do me a favor to suspend that thought for a moment and read on.
Believe it or not, everyone is good at something.
Sometimes you just don’t realize it.
This is because what is so natural and normal to you might be something that many people are struggling with and are even willing to pay you money to help them.
For example, if you are into fashion and have a great sense of style, this might just be a hobby of yours.
But what you might not realize is that people would actually be willing to pay you money to teach them how to dress well to impress their dates.
Here’s another example.
If you are a stay-at-home mum who is very good at cooking healthy and delicious meals for your kids in a very short time, you might feel this is nothing special.
But I bet there are many women out there who would pay you to get your recipes or coaching on how to do the same.
So, here’s what I want you to do next.
First, identify your top 5 skills.
If you are struggling to come up with ideas, it helps to take a look at the following:
- Books you usually read
- Activities you do in your free time
- Websites you frequently visit
- Tools you often use
- Results you’ve gotten for yourself or others
Also, you can ask your friends and family what they think you are good at.
Once you have identified your top 5 skills, I would like you to think about what problems you can help other people solve with each skill.
You see, all the services out there serve ONE purpose – solve problems for people.
When you have a human resources problem, you will want to look for HR consulting services.
When you have a tax problem, you will want to look for tax consulting services.
When you have problems with your Facebook advertising, you will want to look for FB ads consulting services.
Basically, what problems you can help solve will give you clues as to who your ideal clients are.
So, who are you helping with your service?
Are you helping other businesses solve their problems?
Or are you helping individuals?
Here are some side hustle ideas for each.
Side Hustle Ideas For Offering Business Services:
- Digital Advertising Service
- Graphic Design Service
- Social Media Marketing Service
- Copywriting Service
- Translation Service
- Website Design Service
- Legal Service
- Accounting Service
- SEO Service
- Project Management Consulting
- PR Service
- Tax Service
- HR/Payroll Service
- Video Editing Service
- Event Planning/Promotion
Side Hustle Ideas For Offering Service To Individuals:
- Career Consulting/Help (Resume editing / Interview Prep / Finding job)
- Give Lessons (Music,Language, Arts, Sports)
- Personal Trainer
- Personal Chef
- Fashion Consulting
- Relationship Consulting
- Wedding Planning
- Interior Design
- Pet Service
- Travel Planning
- Tax & Financial Planning
- Home Maintenance
- SAT Prep
- College Application Review
Generally, it is easier to sell to businesses because they are always looking for help to solve their business problems and they also have the willingness and the ability to pay for solutions.
A few years ago, I started my own service business offering graphic design services to businesses.
The interesting part is that I didn’t have any graphic design skills.
What I did was that I found a group of talented freelancers online from platforms such as Fiverr and Upwork and asked them to work with me because I always have projects that I want to outsource.
The freelancers need work. And I need talented people to deliver the work for my clients. It is a win-win situation.
So, if you don’t want to sell your own skills or don’t have the time to deliver the services yourself, you can consider Service Arbitrage.
Basically, you are reselling other talented people’s skills and services.
How you make money is that you will charge your clients at a higher rate than what you are paying your freelancers.
If you are interested or maybe just a bit curious about how to start a Service Arbitrage business, you can get instant access to my FREE Service Arbitrage Email Course.
Now, for all service businesses, the most challenging part is to get paying client.
Where do you find them?
And how do you close the sale?
This is something that a lot of people struggle with.
Not everyone is a natural salesperson. Many people have never had any sales experience or training before.
For me, I had no sales experience prior to starting my own business.
To be honest, I even felt guilty about asking for the sale when I first got started.
Maybe you feel the same way.
But, I was able to overcome my fear and learnt the art of selling from my experience of growing this business.
So, what is it that I do that allows me to be my natural self and not feeling bad about asking for the sale?
A mindset shift.
Yes, all you need is to change your mindset from selling to genuinely helping and serving.
You are out there to provide value and offer solutions to people’s problems.
This way, you stay true to who you really are.
Also, it takes away the pressure on you and your client.
When you are genuinely trying to help your clients regardless whether they will hire your service in the end, they can tell that you care and not just go after the money.
If you want to be good at selling, you need to understand two things:
- We only buy from people whom we believe can solve our problem and get us the results we desire
- We only buy from people whom we trust and like
Once you can internalize these two points, you will find it is not so hard to close a sale.
Method #2: Start Your Knowledge Business
Another side hustle that I highly recommend is to start a knowledge business selling your knowledge and expertise.
Here’s the 5 step system I used to launch my own knowledge business:
Step 1: Identify a profitable niche
Step 2: Create Your Offer
Step 3: Drive Traffic To Your Offer
Step 4: Influence & Convert Potential Clients
Step 5: Optimize Your Sales Funnel
Now, let me first give you an example to illustrate what a knowledge business looks like.
Let’s say you have expert knowledge in sleep training for babies. To turn it into a knowledge business, you can do one or all of the following:
- Create and sell an ebook
- Launch an online course
- Offer coaching or consulting
These are just some of the monetization methods you can apply.
Now, you need to understand that you could create the best course or program for your audience, but you would not make any sales if your audience are not willing to pay for what you offer.
So, the very first step in starting a successful knowledge business is actually to identify a profitable niche.
That means you need to find a problem that people are actually willing to pay you money to help them solve it.
So, how do you do that?
First, you need to list down all the topics that you have expert knowledge of. If you need help with coming up with the list, you can take a look at the following:
- Books you have read
- Tools you always use
- Activities you often take part in
- Results you have gotten for yourself
- Problems you have solved for yourself or others
Next, you need to write down all the problems you can solve with your knowledge.
Are these problems that people want to pay money to solve?
Here are two ways to find out:
(1) You can do a quick search on online course platforms such as Udemy. If people are already selling courses on the topic you are considering and there are a lot of sales for the courses, that means there is a market for it.
(2) You can also go to online book stores such as Amazon. If there are a lot of books on the topic and many people are buying the books, that is a good sign that there is demand for what you offer.
Once you have determined a profitable niche, what you should do next is to create your offer.
A good offer is an offer that sells it by itself.
To put together a good offer, you need to find out how you can best help your clients get the results they are looking for in the shortest time possible.
By asking your potential clients the right questions, you should be able to uncover what needs to be include in your offer.
Now that you have created your offer, all you need right now is to get eyeballs on your offer.
You don’t want any kind of traffic.
You want people who are interested or are already looking for the solution you are offering.
And getting your offer in front of your potential clients is only half battle won. You also need to convince and influence them to become a client of yours.
To do that, you must establish your authority in your niche, show proof that you can actually help your clients get results and tackle all the possible objections they might have.
Side Hustle Success Formula: A Profitable Idea + Consistency + Hard Work
So, how committed are you to make your side hustle a success ?
Building a business on the side can be simple but it is never easy. There are bound to be setbacks and challenges along the way.
Are you committed to building a successful side hustle or are you going to quit and give up halfway the moment you face difficulties?
If you want to turn your side hustle into a full time business and eventually replace your day job, then you will need to both consistency and hard work to make it possible.
So, what service business are you going to start on the side?
If you have started a side hustle selling services, please share with us in the comments how it is going.