Starting your own online side hustle business online can be the perfect way to make some extra money each month. This is especially appealing for anyone that has a very tight monthly budget and/or doesn't make much money at the existing job.
Most people think that you need thousands of dollars to start a business, which prevents them from trying. However, that's actually not the case for all side hustles online. In fact, I can teach you about numerous business models that you can get started with for $20 or even less. Some of them are completely free, so you can start a side hustle without any startup money!
Thrift Store Flipping
Anyone that enjoys shopping but can't really afford it may have fun making extra money by flipping retail goods online. Thrift stores are just one potential source where you may be able to find decent items for a cheap price that will sell for much more online. However, you could also go to liquidation auctions of various kinds, buy at yard sales or even shop online but buying from people in your local area.
Once you do this for a while, you could easily end up with hundreds or thousands of dollars worth of inventory at any time. You really don't need substantial money like that to get started though. Take $20 and try to buy a few items with it at thrift stores or yard sales. Then bring those goods back home, photograph them and list them on eBay or Etsy. When you sell your first items, take the money from those sales and buy more. Do this just a handful of times and you can potentially turn $20 into $1,000 or more.
Depending on where you sell your items, keep in mind that you may need to cover your shipping costs out of pocket. For example, a brand new account on eBay may not get their funds until a couple of weeks after you've delivered the items to customers. This can be a big drag on a new business trying to flip and grow inventory. There are some ways to get paid instantly, such as selling on Facebook Groups and/or on Marketplace. Also consider selling some things around your house that you don't need anymore to get an extra boost in start-up funds.
Write a Blog
Almost anyone has the capability to write a blog online. What are your hobbies, and what do you enjoy doing? Are there any subjects that you could talk about endlessly day after day and still have more to say? These subject matters can potentially be topics for your blog. You just need to be able to produce content on a regular basis to make this a long-term success.
This type of online side hustle can be started for about $20 and sometimes less. You can technically start a blog for free on various third-party websites. However, I highly recommend getting your own .com domain name and a website hosting account for it to use WordPress to create your site. The domain should cost you $12-$15 per year and the hosting can be $10 per month or less.
Keep in mind that writing a blog to make money can take time to actually turn a profit. You may need to write for 6 months to a year before you even make enough to cover hosting fees. However, this side hustle offers the long-term potential to make big money once your site gets more popular. That's another reason you need to enjoy the subject matter - you'll do it for a long time without much recognition and have to keep pushing to reach success.
If you enjoy making videos, a YouTube channel may work for you. Think of this like writing a blog except you're doing it in video form instead of text / pictures. Technically, you can even do both to try to build an audience faster by interlinking your channel and a blog website. Just make a video to go along with each blog post.
When you solely focus on YouTube to make money, it can take a long time to make a significant amount. For this reason, I'd also consider it more of a passion project like writing a blog. You may never earn a single penny from it, but if you do a good job and keep at it for a year or more, you have the potential to find big money down the road.
Just like a blog, a YouTube channel should focus on one primary subject or niche. All of your video content will then have something to do with the main category. This will help you market yourself and help others discover you too.
Other Social Media
Social media websites can be utilized in a variety of ways as a side hustle to earn some extra cash. This can be as simple as selling products on Facebook or more of a long-term business like trying to build an audience.
Anyone with dreams of becoming an influencer, for example, can certainly give that a shot. It has the potential for big bucks too and may even offer a much larger payday potential. However, this is also a passion project that could require years of work until you become successful. This is not meant to discourage you though. You simply need to be aware that it could take a while otherwise you may get discouraged before you reach that point and give up.
Most passion project side hustles on the internet can be sped up with marketing. Creating content and just waiting for others to come to you can work. If you bring more people to your content, you'll actually cause a snowball effect that results in even more traffic. It's not uncommon to spend a couple of years getting your first 100,000 followers and then you get 1 million more in a single year, just as a wild example.
One side hustle you can attempt requires zero money up front and no commitment. I'm talking about freelance work online. Work how much you want and whenever you want. You get paid for each job you complete, so your income is really only limited by how much you want to do. Just search for freelance websites on Google to find this type of work.
Writing jobs are the most common type of work that usually doesn't require much experience. However, a lot of the writing jobs offer very little pay. Even though people want English articles, they're often not willing to pay much for them. As a result, people that speak English as a secondary language usually end up doing that type of work if they can live off of a lower income. There are some highly quality content positions that can pay great, but these will often take effort, experience, and a bit of luck to obtain.
Writing is certainly not the only kind of freelance work available online. Anything computer related that requires special skills can often be found and will pay decent money. There is even additional entry-level work such as data entry - it doesn't pay much but requires zero experience and is easy to land work.
Ad & Affiliate Revenue
When you're just running a side hustle and don't want to actually spend a ton of time creating a complete small business, you will likely look for an easy way to monetize. If you aren't selling a product and just writing or making videos, you won't directly make money from it. However, you can change that with advertisements.
As an example, a YouTube channel can enable advertising to get paid for each video view. You may only make $4-$6 per 1,000 video views, but that can really add up once you've built up a large library of videos on your channel.
Affiliate marketing is another method you may be able to use to monetize your side hustle. Instead of products that you have to buy and then ship yourself, you can actually sell products through other companies. When you send them a sale, you earn a percentage of the transaction price as a commission. Either of these options offers a passive income method that doesn't require additional work to make money from your content.
As you grow an audience over time, you may reach a point where advertising and affiliate revenue may not be best for your business. Selling your own products instead should actually generate a higher revenue. You just need a big enough audience to justify the time and money it may take to start selling your own products.
Physical goods sold on an e-commerce website are one example. Depending on the type of content you offer, you may be able to have a custom product created for you that you can sell exclusively to your audience. Otherwise, you could sell branded gear or even normal goods that simply relate to your niche.
Digital products are another option and a personal favorite of mine. You do the work once to create a product. Once it's done, you can sell it over and over again, potentially for years. Best of all, you don't have to ship orders, so you really don't have much work to do to fulfill sales, if any. This can allow you to create a passive income from a single stretch of work.