5 Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket
Let’s be honest, whether you’re a full-time student, a part-time worker, unemployed, in debt, or simply bored, everyone wants a way to earn a little extra cash without having to put in a massive amount of effort. If you find yourself wondering “man, I wish I had some extra money to afford that concert ticket”, or if you find yourself randomly wanting to buy your cat a new sailor outfit (we’re not here to judge), you should try one of these awesome side hustles! You won’t need to quit your day job and you’ll be able to work from the comfort of your own home. Whether you’re an introverted cave-dweller like me or an outgoing socialite, you’ll love these 5 easy home hustles that’ll let you afford those small pleasures in life without dipping into your savings.
Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket – Amazon Affiliate Marketing
With a net worth of $69.7 billion, Amazon has grown to be the world’s most robust and expansive online marketplace. Amazon raked in over $107 billion in revenue during 2015 alone, much of which (about 40%) came from their unique affiliate program. Amazon Affiliates is a simple way you can earn money without doing much of anything in terms of effort, assuming you don’t consider surfing the internet and using social media to be too exhausting, though I suppose if you’re reading this you’ve probably got that part taken care of.
Amazon Affiliate Marketing basically allows you to sell products through Amazon while earning a certain level of commission based on how much you’re able to sell. You’ll get a unique Amazon link that you’re able to put on your website or social media profile. As long as you’re able to promote the link and get people to use it and buy items on Amazon through the link, you will earn money. It’s that simple. Just don’t be like that pestering Facebook friend we all have who tries to get everyone to buy their essential oils. No one likes that person; we both know you’re better than that.
Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket – Blogging
Ever have the urge to spread your love and passion for extreme ironing but lacked the proper outlet to do so? You might want to consider starting a blog! Though it might take time to garner enough traffic to be able to make money through advertising, starting a blog and committing yourself to creating quality content can go a long way. If you find yourself unable to start from the ground-up, try reaching out to established bloggers who’re already in the game and see if you can get an entry-level ghostwriting position to make some extra change. While you obviously need experience in writing and some basic skills regarding website design, starting a blog is simple and far from difficult. WordPress is the most common method people use to host a blog, but there’s a ton of other options available as well.
When starting a blog, it’s important to know your audience without alienating anyone else. I’d recommend not starting right off with something edgy or inflammatory to get views; instead, start with a broad topic or idea and figure out what you’re good at and how people respond to it. When you identify those two things, begin narrowing down and targeting exactly what makes them overlap and narrow your content from there. If you need some help coming up with an idea, some common blogs revolve around sports, politics, education, business, do-it-yourself ideas, and many others. The most important thing is to choose something you’re passionate about and create original, creative, and interesting content.
Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket – Editing
The internet is filled with writers and content creators from all walks of life. I’m sure you’ve gone to a website and have been horrified with either the style, content, and/or writing quality. You know what these folks could use? A decent editor. If you have quality writing skills and established experience with a decent portfolio, there’s a great chance you’d be able to get a gig with a site to edit their content and make some decent cash.
Editing has many forms, so it’s important to find out where you think you’d be the best fit. If you enjoy reading, analyzing, and coming up with ideas to improve the writing, content editing might for you. Content editing revolves around checking content for factual errors, inconsistencies in the plot, and issues with dialogue or characters (among other things). Copy editing, on the other hand, is checking a piece (referred to as copy) for punctuation, spelling, capitalization, and various grammatical errors. The goal of a copy edit is to refine the copy so that it fits in accordance with industry standards and is technically sound.
At any rate, editing is a booming area of online work and it shouldn’t be difficult to get your foot in the door if you’re willing to put in the work. Though it should go without saying at this point, make sure your application is well-written and free of any grammatical errors. After all, I don’t think I need to explain how terribly ironic it would be to apply for an editing job with an application that reads like a fourth grade party invitation.
Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket – Graphic Design
If you have a passion for art and a creative drive, you might want to consider becoming a part-time graphic designer. You’ll need to know your way around Photoshop, Illustrator, GIMP, or something similar, but if you can create marketable art you’ll be able to make some serious cash. People pay top-dollar for quality graphic designers, especially considering how high the skill-cap is when it comes to mastering the art of design. If you don’t have access to a paid photo-editing or design program, GIMP is free and there’s a ton of online tutorials and videos to get you started.
Oh, and don’t even think about using MSPaint as a way to start graphic designing. I don’t mean to be rude, and I’m sure you’re very talented, but there’s only so far you can go with making pictures that probably look like they were drawn by my sweet 96-year-old grandma in her retirement home art class. We’re all proud of her, but it’s not something I’d want hanging on the wall of the entrance to my business or on the front page of my website.
Once you’ve mastered a program that isn’t MSPaint, it’s important to create template designs and build a portfolio to present to potential clients. The freelance market for graphic designers is massive, so I encourage anyone with an interest in the field to take advantage of the demand. Refine your skills by practicing with various tutorials and stay on top of the newest technology and design strategies to climb to the top of the game. Develop a habit of excellence and commitment to creating quality work and you’ll have clients lining up for you in no time.
Lucrative Side Hustles to Add Money to Your Pocket – Programming
Learning to code isn’t easy, but if you’re willing to spend a few months to learn you’ll be raking in tons of cash in no time. There’s a reason why computer science and systems engineering are two of the highest paying fields in the United States, each starting around a whopping $70,000/year. While many people in the industry have gone to college to obtain a formal education in the field, programming is something that almost anyone can learn without spending a single dime.
First, do some research and figure out which sort of programming interests you. Do you want to build the back-end of a website and be responsible for the maintenance of keeping it running? Do you want to construct a program that analyzes sets of data? Do you want to build the framework for a wireless network? Maybe you’ve seen a movie or two and decided you’d like to make an interactive artificial intelligence program? The possibilities are endless when it comes to what you can do with extensive programming experience, and the high-wages you’re able to earn are a direct reflection of this fact.
Next, try building some of your own original programs and add it to your profile — GitHub is a necessary tool if you’re going to start coding. The most important part of getting a programming job is showing that you actually know how to program, so having some projects under your belt is absolutely imperative to getting even an entry-level position as a code monkey. I’ll be honest, this is probably the most difficult and time-consuming suggestion on this list. I’ve tried my hand at coding and found it to be one of the most frustrating and challenging tasks I’d ever undertaken. If you want to learn how to program, you’ll need to set aside a good chunk of spare time specifically dedicated towards the task. Remember to persevere and keep your head up, especially considering you’ll almost certainly be banging it against your keyboard and wondering why your code won’t compile.
For some free resources to help you learn the delicate-yet-grueling art of programming, check out this list below:
Programming 101: Links
- Codecademy – arguably the most popular online coding resource. It’s really simple and easy to use, but I think it’s almost too easy in some regards. It’s a great starting point for learning basic syntax, but you should move on once you’ve completed the Code Academy resources because you won’t be anywhere near ready for an actual job.
- Coursera – allows you to take courses from professors around the world. It has a great structure, but you have to stay committed to doing the work. I’ve used this before and had great results.
- Scratch – A project from MIT geared towards kids, but it will help any eager beginner learn the basic logic involved in writing code.
- SQL Zoo – Perfect site to learn the basics of the SQL (Structured Query Language). Most of the databases uses this language or very similar to it. Additionally, SQL Zoo offers an interactive surface to try out what you’ve learned.
- Udacity – There’s a ton of resources included — they’re all geared towards computer science. It’s a great way to test the waters regarding things like web programming and artificial intelligence.
So, there they are — 5 relatively simple side hustles you can do to earn some money without quitting your day job. If you have the mental fortitude for it, I’d recommend learning a programming language above the others, assuming your end-goal is just to earn as much money as possible. If you’re looking for something that usually pays a little less but isn’t as frustrating or rage-inducing as programming usually is, try blogging or editing. If you love art and creating unique designs, try your hand at learning graphic web-design. It doesn’t really matter what you do; if you put in the effort and learn a skill related to something you enjoy, you’ll find yourself enjoying your work more than ever before.
Side hustles can be some of the most rewarding experiences you can ever do. Sure, you’ll earn extra money, but you’ll also learn incredibly valuable skills along the way if you commit yourself. As they say: aim high and shoot for the moon; even if you fall, you’ll land among the stars — or something like that. I don’t actually remember how the quote goes, but I’m sure you get the idea. Above all, stay persistent, determined, and eager to work. You’ll be adding to your cash-flow in no time. Good luck!
Article Written by Sam C. for Beyond Debt