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Starting a side hustle is a popular and effective way to increase your income. But while there are many different side hustle ideas you can pursue, the income potential varies significantly from one to the next.
If you’re looking for a way to earn a significant amount of money outside of a traditional job, you’ll want to focus on high-paying side hustles that will compensate you well for your time and effort.
Here, we’ll look at several of the highest-paying side hustles so you can choose the one that’s right for you. Keep in mind that some options allow you to start earning money quickly, and others require some patience while you build a business.
The Highest-Paying Side Hustles
The best side hustles make it possible to earn a significant amount of money in your spare time. And who knows, your side hustle may even turn into a full-time income.
1. Freelance Writing
As a freelance writer, you’ll get paid to write articles, blog posts, e-books, and more for businesses and individuals. While you’ll need to build up a portfolio of writing samples before landing high-paying gigs, once you do, you can easily earn $50 or more per hour (although most gigs will pay per word or per article).
The rates for freelance writers are all over the place. There are definitely a lot of low-paying writing gigs out there, but there are also plenty of high-paying opportunities.
If you want to maximize your income as a freelance writer, the best approach is to specialize in a particular topic or niche. Writers who cover anything and everything tend to be paid on the lower end of the scale. But if you take a specialized approach and you’re good at what you do, you can demand premium rates.
At first, you may need to take some freelance writing jobs for beginners just to gain experience and build your portfolio, but you should be looking to move on to higher-paying gigs when you’re able to.
Earning a six-figure income as a freelance writer is certainly possible, and many people are doing it. But even if you’re only working part-time, you can still get paid quite well.
Freelance Writing 101 by Brad Merrill is an excellent resource that will get you started as a freelance writer on a solid foundation.
2. Web Design and Development
If you’re good with technology and know your way around HTML, CSS, and other web development technologies (like WordPress), you can start a business designing and developing websites.
As a web designer or developer, you can earn $50-$100 per hour (or more) working on a freelance basis. And if you’re able to land some long-term clients, you can easily make a six-figure income.
Thanks to modern page builders like Divi from Elegant Themes, you don’t even need to code in order to offer web design services. Instead of building sites from scratch with HTML, you can use the Divi Builder to create custom sites for clients without even touching any code.
You might not make quite as much money if you’re not doing any coding, but you can still do quite well. Many small business owners are looking for an affordable website and they don’t know how to do it on their own. You could help them set up a professional site for a fraction of the cost of having a site designed and coded from scratch by an agency.
Of course, starting a web design and development business is not something you can do overnight. It takes time to build up a portfolio of work to make extra cash. But if you’re willing to put in the effort, it can be a very lucrative side hustle and even turn into a legit full-time business.
To learn more, see our article How to Make Money as a Web Designer.
Investing is one of the best ways to make money, but it’s not always considered a side hustle since it takes time to see results. However, if you’re investing for the long term (five years or more), it can be a great way to earn some extra income on the side.
You can also choose to invest in individual stocks, which is riskier but also provides the potential for higher returns. Platforms like Public.com, Webull, and M1 Finance make it easy for anyone to get started as an investor.
One of the best things about investing as a side hustle is that it will help you to improve your financial and money management skills, which will prove to be extremely valuable in many ways.
Public.com offers fractional shares so anyone can start investing. You'll love the social aspect that makes it possible to connect with other investors. Get a free stock slice worth up to $300 when you open an account through our link.
- Commission-free trades of stocks and ETFs
- Buy and sell 27 different cryptocurrencies
- Fractional shares
- Easy to use and beginner-friendly
- Connect with a supportive community of investors
- "Themes" help you to find investments that interest you
If you’re passionate about a particular topic, you can start a blog and share your insights with the world. You can also turn your blog into a business by monetizing it with ads, sponsored content, affiliate marketing, digital products, and more.
You’ve probably heard or read about bloggers who are earning six or even seven-figure incomes working from home on their blog. Obviously, blogging has potential to be a high-paying side hustle.
Of course, it’s not as easy as many people make it sound, but having success as a blogger is realistic if you have some patience and you’re willing to put in the work before you start to see the payoff. Many successful bloggers make little or nothing for the first 6 to 12 months while working to grow their audience.
Blogging is particularly special to me because I started a blogging side hustle in 2007, and I’ve been doing it full-time since 2008.
If you’d like to make money blogging, see my article How to Start a Blog that will walk you through the steps to take.
5. Build a Niche Website
Niche websites are very similar to blogs, but there are a few key differences (although the names can sometimes be used interchangeably). The key distinguishing feature of a niche website is that all of the content is tightly focused on a particular topic.
While a lifestyle blog may cover topics like cooking, travel, money, fashion, etc., a niche website would focus on just one of those topics. And in many cases, the topic would have an even more narrow focus. For example, instead of covering cooking in general, the site might cover vegan recipes.
Blogs are sometimes heavily influenced by the blogger. The personality of the blogger may be the biggest reason why people follow the blog. But with a niche website, the person writing the content is usually irrelevant. The site is about the content, not the person writing it.
Most niche website creators prioritize traffic from search engines like Google. To maximize search traffic, content is usually created around specific keywords that people are searching for. Usually, the site owners target low competition keywords that are identified through keyword research.
Like blogging, you can start a niche website on any topic that interests you and make extra income. You’ll want to make sure that an audience exists so you don’t waste your time creating content that no one cares about, but there are hundreds or probably thousands of different options.
Most niche websites are monetized with display ads and affiliate marketing, but other monetization methods are possible too.
If you’d like to make money from niche websites, see my Complete Guide to Building a Profitable Niche Website.
6. Start a YouTube Channel
YouTube has become one of the most popular ways to consume content, and it’s also an excellent platform for creators who want to share their original content with the world. It’s one of the best side hustles right now.
You don’t need any special equipment to start a YouTube channel. You can just use your phone to record videos and upload them to the platform. Of course, if you want your videos to look more professional, you can invest in some better equipment as you go, but that’s not absolutely essential at the beginning.
The kind of content you create will depend on your interests and what you think your audience wants to see. You could create cooking videos, product reviews, how-to guides, or really anything else that you’re passionate about and that you think others would find interesting.
While you can make money from YouTube through ads, most successful YouTubers also branch out to other monetization methods like sponsorships, affiliate marketing, or product sales.
Building a YouTube channel is similar to blogging or starting a niche website in that it will take some time and patience before you start to see the money flowing in. But once you build a following, there’s potential to make a lot of money from your YouTube channel.
To learn more, please see YouTube for Beginners – How to Start and Grow Your YouTube Channel.
7. Start a Podcast
Podcasting is one of the fastest-growing content formats, and it’s a great way to reach an audience that prefers to consume content through audio instead of (or in addition to) video or text.
Like starting a YouTube channel, you don’t need a lot of equipment to start a podcast. All you need is a microphone and some editing software. You could start with the mic that’s built-in to a laptop, although spending a small amount for a better mic is a good idea. Audacity is free software you can use to edit your audio files.
The topic of your podcast will depend on your interests and what you think your audience wants to listen to. You could do interviews, solo shows, or even fiction stories.
Podcasts are usually monetized with ads or sponsorships, but there are other options as well. For example, many podcasters also sell products or courses. And of course, affiliate marketing is also a possibility.
To learn more, please see A Practical Guide to Creating a Podcast.
8. Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant (VA) is someone who provides administrative, technical, or creative assistance to clients remotely. In other words, you could be doing anything from managing someone’s email inbox to scheduling appointments to writing blog posts.
The great thing about being a virtual assistant is that you can work with multiple clients and set your own hours. Thanks to remote work, you can also often choose to work with clients in different time zones, which gives you even more flexibility.
If you're interested in making money from home, be sure to check out this free workshop from Kayla Sloan. She shows how to use the skills you already have to start making money as a VA.
Of course, the pay for virtual assistants varies depending on the kind of work you’re doing and your experience level. If you want to maximize your income, you could choose to take a specialized approach and work to brand yourself as an expert in your field.
For example, you could work as a Pinterest virtual assistant and manage Pinterest profiles for your clients. If you’re great at what you do, your clients will get better results, and you can charge higher rates.
Another option is to specialize in setting up online courses for clients. If you’re experienced with Teachable, Podia, or other course platforms, you could help clients set up their courses and lead generation funnels.
Kayla Sloan offers a free workshop called 5 Steps to Become a Virtual Assistant. This is the perfect starting point for anyone interested in becoming a VA, either part-time or full-time.
If you have a lot of experience in a particular area, you could start your own consulting business and help others achieve their goals while earning some extra income.
For example, you could be a business consultant and help small businesses with things like marketing, social media, or even finances. Alternatively, you could be a career coach and help people navigate their job search or advance their careers.
The sky really is the limit when it comes to consulting. As long as you have the skills and experience that people are willing to pay for, you can start your own consulting business and earn an excellent hourly rate.
Working as a consultant is definitely one of the highest-paying side hustles, and it can even turn into a full-time business.
Maybe you already have some valuable skills or experience you could use to get started making good money. Think about your experience through your current job, past jobs, and even your hobbies.
To learn more, please see Kings of Consulting.
10. Rent Out an RV or Camper
Do you have an RV or camper that you don’t use very often? If so, you could make some extra money by renting it out on a site like RVshare.
RVshare is kind of like Airbnb, but for RVs and campers. You can list your RV or camper on the site and set your own prices and availability. When someone rents your RV, they’ll pay through the RVshare platform, and you’ll get paid by RVshare.
Of course, there are a few things to keep in mind before you start renting out your RV. For example. While this great side hustle is mostly passive, you’ll need to clean and maintain your RV before each rental. However, it’s an excellent way to make extra money without dedicating a lot of time to your side hustle. Who doesn’t love passive income?
The rental market for campers and RVs is excellent. Not a lot of people have them and most would prefer to rent instead of buy. If you have an RV or camper, this could be one of the best side hustles for you.
Do you own an RV? If so, you can make a great passive income by renting it out when you're not using it. RVshare is a platform that connects RV owners with renters.
- Use the RV when you want, rent it out when you don't need it
- Turn your RV into an income-generating asset
- Passive income opportunity
- You control all the details like pricing
- Largest RV marketplace
11. Rent Out Your Truck
Do you have a truck that you don’t use very often? If so, you could make some extra money by renting it out on a site like Fetch.
Fetch is like RVshare, but for trucks and cargo vans. You can list your truck on the site and set your own prices and availability. When someone rents your truck, they’ll pay through the Fetch, and then Fetch will pay you. Fetch even has a device you can install in your truck that allows renters to get into the truck to get the key, so you won’t need to meet renters in person.
According to Fetch, you can make up to $1,800 per month per truck that’s rented on the platform. Not a bad side hustle for passive income!
Rent out your truck and make money passively with Fetch. Fetch's platform automates most of the process for you. They'll promote your rental to people in your local area, handle all customer inquiries, renter verification, and payment. The Fetch smart device even allows renters to unlock your truck with their phone so you don't have to meet them in person.
- Great side hustle for busy people
- Turn your truck into an income-generating asset
- Excellent income potential
- Rent out a single truck or build your own fleet
- Fetch guarantees that you'll make at least $1,500 in the first 90 days
12. Rent Out Storage Space
Do you have an extra room, closet, or even just some space in your garage that you’re not using? If so, why not put it to good use and rent out the space on a site like Neighbor?
Neighbor is a peer-to-peer storage rental platform where people can list their extra storage space and set their own prices. When someone needs storage, they can search for available space on Neighbor and book the space they need.
You can list a basement, attic, garage, shed, spare bedroom, parking space, and more. And like the other rental side hustles, this is a great way to earn passive income. All you really need to do is list the space and be sure that renters are able to access it.
Neighbor makes it easy to earn extra cash by renting out storage space in your basement, attic, garage, or even a shed. Make extra money each month without needing to spend time on a side hustle.
- Earn thousands of dollars per year
- Very little time or effort required
- Neighbor markets your space to people in your local area
- Set your own rates
- Neighbor handles all the payments for you
13. Trash Cleanup
Brian Winch started a trash cleanup side hustle in the 1980s, and within a few short months, he was making more with his side hustle than he was at his full-time job. For more than 30 years now, Brian has been earning six figures per year with his trash cleaning business.
The concept is simple. Brian focuses on cleaning up litter from parking lots of strip malls, retail stores, office buildings, and other types of businesses. His clients need to keep their parking lots cleaning, and they’re happy to pay him to do it.
Brian is the creator of Cleanlots, where he shares all the details of the business model that he’s developed. He calls it “America’s simplest business” because just about anyone can do it. You don’t need any special skills, and you don’t need to invest much money in equipment.
In Cleanlots, Brian shows exactly how you can go about finding clients in your local area so you can start making money quickly. Many of Brian’s students have highly-successful side hustles or even full-time businesses.
One of the benefits of this business is that you can do the work yourself or hire others to do it for you. You don’t need to spend a lot of money since it’s work that requires no specific skills.
For a detailed business plan you can follow for your own trash cleanup business, please check out Cleanlots.
14. Delivery Driver
If you have a car, you could make some extra money by becoming a delivery driver. There are a number of companies that will pay you to deliver food or other items, and all you need is a vehicle and a clean driving record.
DoorDash is our top recommendation because they’re located in thousands of cities and towns, so it’s probably an option in your area. Also, DoorDash doesn’t have any requirements for the car that you use, so it can be any vehicle. According to DoorDash, drivers (they call them “Dashers”) earn about $25 per hour including tips.
Instacart offers opportunities for grocery delivery. By working for Instacart, you would be responsible for shopping for clients and then delivering the order to their house.
One of the main benefits of working as a delivery driver is that you can start making money almost immediately. If you sign up today, you may be able to make money within just a few days.
15. Create Online Courses
If you have some expertise in a particular subject, you can share that knowledge with others by creating an online course.
The great thing about online courses is that they can be created once and then sold over and over again. So, if you put in the work upfront, you can reap the rewards for months or years to come.
To create an online course, you’ll need to decide on the topic, format, and price. You’ll also need to create the actual content for the course and figure out how you’re going to deliver it to your students.
If you’re not sure what kind of course to create, think about what skills or knowledge you have that others might be willing to pay to learn. It could be anything from cooking to gardening to web development.
For more details, please see Online Course Masters.
With print-on-demand t-shirts and other apparel, you can create your own designs and sell them through a number of different online platforms. The best thing about this business is that you don’t need to invest any money in inventory. Instead, the company you use will print the shirts when someone orders them.
You can find a number of companies that offer print-on-demand services, but our top recommendation is Printful. Printful integrates nicely with Shopify, and they have a wide range of products that you can add your designs to, including t-shirts, mugs, phone cases, and more.
From Design to Product: Sell Your Art Online Through Print on Demand is a great resource if you’re interested in this business model.
17. Sell Printables
If you’re creative, selling printables could be the perfect side hustle. These are digital files that people can download and print at home. They can be anything from planners and organizers to stickers.
Just like print-on-demand, you don’t need to invest any money in inventory. You can create the designs once and then sell them over and over again.
Etsy is the most popular platform for selling printables, but you can also sell them on your own website or blog. If you want to get started quickly, we recommend using Etsy since it’s easy to set up and get started. However, selling on your own website using Shopify or SendOwl will maximize your income potential.
There are possibilities to create printables for a wide variety of topics and target audiences. For example, you could sell:
- Planners for busy moms
- Organization printables for students
- Recipe cards for cooks
- Budgeting worksheets for people trying to save money
- To-do lists for anyone who wants to be more productive
Access this free workshop to learn exactly how to generate passive income by selling printables on Etsy. You'll learn about the types of products that sell, how to get your Etsy shop set up, and how to make sales and ensure that your shop is a success.
18. Voiceover Artist
Businesses often need voiceover artists or voice actors for commercials, sales videos, advertisements, training videos, YouTube videos, and more. With the amount of audio and video content being created every day, the demand for skilled voiceover artists is high.
Fiverr is an excellent platform for getting started. You can create a profile and start offering your voiceover services. Once you’ve built up some positive reviews, you can start charging more.
To learn more, please see Voice Over Masterclass.
19. Social Media Management
Businesses of all sizes need help with their social media presence. And, because social media is such an important part of marketing these days, there’s a lot of money to be made by helping businesses grow their social media following.
As a social media manager, you’ll be responsible for creating and posting content, engaging with followers, and managing ad campaigns. If you have experience with building your own social profiles, you could turn this into a profitable business by offering services to others.
You could choose to offer general social media marketing services, or specialize in a particular platform. Alternatively, you could also focus on ad campaigns, which can be very lucrative.
For more details, please see Run Your Social Media Marketing Business.
If you’re good with your hands and have some basic tools, you can start a handyman business and make extra cash. This type of business is always in demand, since there are always repairs that need to be done around the house.
To get started, you can simply talk to people you already know. Tell your friends, family, neighbors, co-workers, and other acquaintances about the services you can offer and see if they need any help. Many people have projects for a handyman, so it’s usually not that difficult to find your first few clients.
Just like with any other business, it’s important to stand out from the competition. One of the best ways to do this is by providing exceptional customer service. If you’re able to build up a loyal clientele, you’ll be able to grow your business organically through word-of-mouth.
For a detailed guide, please see How to Start Handyman Business.
If you’re good with numbers and have some experience with bookkeeping, you could start your own bookkeeping business. This type of business is perfect for people who are organized and detail-oriented.
There are a few things you need to get started:
- Basic bookkeeping knowledge: You don’t need to be a CPA, but you should know the basics of bookkeeping.
- A computer: You’ll need a laptop or desktop computer to do the work.
- Accounting software: There are many different accounting software programs available, but Quickbooks is the most popular.
To get started, you market your services to small businesses in your area.
For a helpful guide, please see How to Start a Bookkeeping Business.
If you’re good with grammar and spelling and have a sharp eye for detail, you can start your own proofreading business. This is a great way to make money from home since you can work as much or as little as you want.
You could find proofreading work through an online platform and work as an independent contractor, or start your own business and find your own client. There’s plenty of work available and the income potential, especially if you start your own business, is very good.
This free workshop from Proofread Anywhere is an excellent starting point for anyone considering this side hustle.
Working as a DJ is an ideal option for music lovers. You could find work as a club DJ, wedding DJ, or mobile DJ. You can also start your own DJ business and build up a clientele by finding your own gigs. The income potential is very good, especially if you start your own business.
This is ideal as a side hustle because many of the gigs will be for weddings and other events that are usually scheduled for evenings and weekends. If you work a traditional 9-5 job Monday through Friday, you can still work as a DJ on the side and do quite well.
Final Thoughts on High-Paying Side Hustles
There are many different high-paying side hustles that you can start for extra cash. The key is to find one that matches your skills and interests. With hard work and dedication, you can turn your side hustle into a full-time business and make a very good income.