One of the most common reasons I hear people say they don’t have a side hustle – outside of time – is the cost. Making money does take some money, but it doesn’t have to take a lot. Here’s a list of 34 side hustles that you can start today for $100 or less.
1. Manage Internet Advertising/Social Media Campaigns for Small Businesses
Most small businesses barely have enough time to get the day to day stuff done. If they’re forward thinking, they might even have a decent website. 95% don’t have a clue when it comes to advertising on the internet, however. Facebook Ads, Pinterest promotions, Twitter – it’s all fair game. If you understand these concepts, there’s big money to be made here, and you need almost no upfront investment to get started. The real secret is bringing actionable leads to your client. If you can do that, the sky is the limit.
Offer your services to parents via fliers, word of mouth, community facebook groups – you name it. Parents will pay good money to ensure their children are taken care of. I know – I am one of them!
3. Become a Life Coach
Do you have your professional and/or personal life together? While the phrase ‘life coach’ sounds like a personal coach, life coaches often specialize in one area, such as career, or personal, and charge an hourly rate for their sessions. Their work often takes the form of one-on-one sessions (30 min, an hour, etc) with the goal being ongoing work with clients.
4. Be a Pet Sitter
If you can find people who are traveling, but have pets – you can cash in. We regularly hire a pet sitter for our family vacations, because we don’t want to leave our pets in an unfamiliar boarding facility.
5. Start a Landscaping Business
Own a lawn mower and weed trimmer? You can start a landscaping hustle on the side. People regularly pay $30-120/mo for lawn service. If you can do other things, such as lay sod and weed control, you can charge on the higher end. If you line up a handful of customers, you could earn several hundred in a day.
6. Create and Sell T-shirts on Teespring or Etsy
7. Learn Photoshop and sell your services
Photoshop Skills are in high demand in the digital age. People need logos, book covers, infographics, website mockups, app mockups – you name it. Photoshop isn’t cheap at around $600-700, but if you use Adobe Creative Cloud (a subscription model), it’ll run you $19.99/mo to have Photoshop. It does require a year commitment, though.
That being said, if you can learn photoshop, a very real (and lucrative) side hustle exists here.
8. Build a Blog and earn money with Adsense/Affiliate programs
Build a site. Write content. Spread the word. Make money when people visit your site and either view or click links (Adsense, or Media.net style programs) – or when they purchase products via affiliate links on your site. The latter (affiliate) option is my personal favorite out of the two, but either way, there’s money to be made here. Startup cost is minimal too – at around $30 or less for a basic setup.
Update: If you do decide to go this route, Hostgator (I use them and prefer them, but Bluehost is good too) is offering a limited run of their discounted startup price here.
9. Put your software expertise to use
Know a bunch of shortcuts in Excel? Are you fluent in Photoshop, Office, or MS Project? If so – you can earn money teaching others to use the software. The more difficult the software, the more you can charge.
10. Create a video course and sell it
On the tail of the last item, if you know something really well, such as a software, why not streamline it and build an e-course and sell it on either your own platform, or a site like Udemy – where you can design, record, and sell your own class? The beauty of this approach is that it decouples the income from your time – and also allows you to sell while you sleep.
You just need some good screen recording software, and a quality microphone to get started. For a microphone, I personally use several microphones, but one of my favorites is the Blue Snowball USB Microphone.
Protip: $50-$100 will get you all the mic you need. I have tested cheaper mics and been thoroughly unimpressed with their quality. Don’t skimp. Buy it once and it’ll serve you a long time.
11. Leverage your day job skills
Using the experience you gain from your day job to consult with businesses on the side is one of the best side hustles. If you’re a marketing professional, for example, you can help small businesses better understand their target audience and connect with them. This hustle does take some finesse, however, as you need to make sure you’re not infringing on any existing agreements with your current employer. In many cases you’re fine, but it’s best to check before moving forward. Due diligence aside, there can be massive money here. I once provided a quote to a client (that my employer at the time would not have worked with anyway) – for $7,000 of work to be done in a few days as an independent consultant.
12. Build a niche site
A niche site is a site that is tailored to one specific topic, and aims to get a lot of traffic sourced via Google and other search engines. An example would be a “best wireless router” website. From a monetization standpoint, you’ve got a couple of primary options: Earn money through Ads (Adsense, or Media.net), or earn through affiliate programs. If you’re interested in reading more about affiliate sites, I wrote a detailed article on the topic here.
13. Write an ebook and sell on Amazon, iTunes, or Smashwords
I’ve read a lot of success stories of writers who put out 50+ ebooks and made a lot of side income this way. I’ll admit – I’m still figuring it out. I’ve been a published KDP author for a few months now, and have barely made anything. Granted, that was my first book, and I did an awful job of promotion on it prior to launch, which I am pretty sure is what killed it. Either way, if you’re smarter than me, and put some thought into your ebook launch, you can make a lot of cash this way.
Protip: Most authors would suggest launching the book for free on Amazon (in the KDP Select program) for 5 days, then bumping it up to paid. I’d agree with this approach – I had a huge spike in downloads when my book was free initially.
14. Flip stuff on eBay
Whenever people sell stuff, it creates an opportunity. While the majority of people will sell their items for market value, you’ll occasionally find someone who sells for less than market value. If you can capture the item, and flip it for market value (or higher) – you’ll turn a profit. This is especially powerful when you understand the items being sold – sometimes people don’t know what they have on their hands and will underprice. You can leverage this same approach on Craigslist, but be safe. People are insane (and often shady) on Craigslist.
15. Learn to code and freelance
Learning to program is similar to learning to speak another language – once you know it, it’s easy. Learning it is tough, but valuable. Most people are terrified of learning to code. I know this all too well, as I know enough of a few languages to get by (both spoken and programming). I can promise you this – a person with average intelligence and 1 hour a day, could easily be proficient enough to develop a basic program in 30 days. In 6 months you could be easily monetizing your skills on sites like elance, or Fiverr.
16. Start a car detailing business
Nobody likes a dirty car. Cleaning cars isn’t rocket science, and if you are willing to get a little dirty, you can detail cars and make a healthy profit. Mobile detailers prices vary widely, but it’s not unheard of to pay $150 for a detail. Be warned, however, the startup cost can be high if you look at shampoo machines for carpet – but if you eliminate that piece of gear, you can start under $100 without doubt and build from there.
17. Start a mobile pet grooming business
People pay to get their pets groomed – why shouldn’t they pay you? Full-blown setups can cost a lot, but there’s no reason you can’t start small and focus on those with grooming needs in your neighborhood.
18. Offer computer support
If your family and friends have identified you as ‘the computer whiz’, then you can definitely make some money. Post some fliers up, build a basic toolkit (thumb drives, screw drivers, a few spare parts) – and help people fix their issues. Just think, how many times have you been asked to help someone with their computer? (If zero, you should either skip this hustle, or get to learning!)
19. Math/Science/English Tutor
Parents want the best for their kids, and when their kids could use a little extra help to keep up in class (or to jump ahead) – they’ll pay money for a good tutor. Working with kids is probably the most important skill here, but you obviously need a baseline of knowledge in the particular area you plan to offer tutoring services.
Also, don’t limit your thinking on this hustle to kids, either. Adults study for all kinds of exams: think LSAT, Certification Exams, ACT (for those going back to school). Interesting fact: the SAT is no longer available to adults due to rampant cheating by older test takers.
20. Invent something
Have you ever had an idea for a new product? Have you ever looked at an existing product and thought ‘This could be better”? Most people have, I think. The number one objection when people think of inventing, is that they get stuck on the ‘making it’ part. You don’t need a prototype (although it’s nice to have one) – you don’t even need a physical product. Once you have an idea, you just need to create what is called a “Sell Sheet,” which is a one page graphic with your product rendered (by an artist), and some highlights of the product. You can get these made for $20! You then take your sell sheet and pitch to companies which solicit ideas from inventors. If they bite, you take a small percentage of each sale made, and they take your idea and build it. If you were calculating potential ROI vs. the cost to start a hustle – inventing a product has to rank pretty high on the list of high potential endeavors.
21. Build a mobile app
While I do believe you should have some level of programming skill to build an app, you don’t actually need any. These days, you can hire someone to build an app for well under $400 and get it published to the App Store/Google Play. I realize $400 is higher than $100, but you could technically do it for almost nothing, if you code it yourself (although you will have to enroll in the Apple Developer program if you code for iOS, which costs $99). If interested in making your own app, I wrote an article on how you can Build Your First iOS App in 30 Days.
If you don’t want to code, or pay $400 – consider partnering with someone who is more technically savvy than you. You’ll have to split profits, but 50% of something is better than 100% of nothing.
22. Drive for Uber/Lyft
Got a car? Drive people around in your spare time and get paid with these services.
23. Take online surveys for money
Survey taking has been a great way to earn a few extra bucks for a long time. You do have to dedicate a bit of time to doing them regularly, but it’s a nice way to pad your account at the end of the month!
24. Review and Edit Resumes for money
The resume is the first piece (and sometimes the only) of information that a company sees about a prospective employee. If it’s poorly written, there’s no chance at getting hired in most cases. If it’s well done, an interview will be offered, and you might actually have a chance at the job.
With this understanding, it’s not hard to see where the value is in helping people craft top-notch resumes. All you really need is Microsoft Word, some research on resume do’s and don’ts, and a way to spread the word about your service.
25. Join a Multilevel marketing program (MLM)
I’m not a fan of MLM systems, honestly, but some people kill it with them. At the end of the day, it’s sales. You sign up for the program of your choosing, and you sell under their flag, receiving a commission. If you can sell, you can actually make some money on them. If you’re average or below, it’s a big time suck, in my opinion. Examples are Shakeology, Pampered Chef, Mary Kay, and many, many others. Still, it might be worth a shot as there’s a pretty low barrier to entry.
26. Be a Handyman
I’m the worlds worst handyman. I can hang things on the wall, but that’s where my skills end. Once I shocked myself while installing a new power outlet, and that’s where I quit. The takeaway is: people will pay you to do simple things around their home that they are either unable, or unwilling to do. If you can hang ceiling fans, install new locks, do basic plumbing, and patch drywall – give it a shot. What’s the worst that can happen? (Death, actually. 120V doesn’t feel good.)
27. Be an elderly companion
Believe it or not, people get paid to spend time with elderly folks.
28. Become a Life Guard
Seasonal lifeguards typically make around $16-20/hr, whereas permanent lifeguards (think Hawaii) make a lot more.
29. Teach a fitness class
Group fitness classes are extremely popular. Training courses to become instructors are typically pretty cheap. If you already attend one of these classes, why not get paid to attend them? A couple of examples of group training classes that require certification are Zumba, and Les Mills.
30. Become a Notary
When people need an official stamp by a notary, they have a few options, which include (but aren’t limited to): visiting a bank, visiting a third party service (such as Amscot) that can notarize documents, or they can find an independent notary. Independent notaries charge anywhere from $2 to $20 per signature, typically, and can charge up to $150 on a document signing session for things such as mortgage closings. The best part? In many states (Florida included) – the course to become a notary is free, meaning that you’re left with purchasing your seal and paying any necessary fees, so this is definitely a doable side hustle under $100.
31. Start a house cleaning business
Clean what other people don’t have time (or the desire) to do! Charge a flat rate, or go hourly. Many house cleaners have maintained the same clients for years.
32. Organize rooms/homes for other people
Don’t be a neat freak – be a ‘professional organizer.’ Seriously, though, if you can organize, why not charge for it? In the last week I’ve actually seen a couple of posts on my community’s facebook page requesting this exact service. Unfortunately for them, I’m a mess.
32. Repair Golf Clubs
This one might sound funny, but hear me out. Repairing golf clubs when they break, and re-gripping them when they wear out – is something most people search out a golf shop for. If you know how to re-grip a set of clubs, you can do them in an hour’ish, and charge about $30 for it – more, if you’re able to find a way to sell the grips too (and for a margin). It’s not hard work, but not many people know how to do it.
33. Become a Virtual Assistant
VA’s do everything under the sun, and you can find them all over the place..and for good reason. They’re super helpful, and can really save the busy entrepreneur a lot of time and headache, while giving someone else a side hustle in the process. Sites like Freelancer, and UPWork can help you find VA jobs.
34. Do work on Amazon Mechanical Turk
For tasks that can’t be automated easily, Amazon has created Mechanical Turk. The gist of it goes like this: you sign up, you complete tasks such as transcribing video to written media, collecting data from a website, taking surveys, you name it. You then get paid. It’s not a lot, and in some cases it’s lower than minimum wage, but $100/week is NOT unheard of if you’re dedicated to it. What could you do with an extra $400+/mo?
And that’s it! Listen, side hustle ideas are amazing, but if you don’t act on them, they’re useless. I sincerely believe that if you picked any side hustle idea (on this list or not), and worked hard at it for 90 days, you’d see results. Maybe not quit-your-day-job results, but enough for you to continue. And what if you don’t see results? You change course. You pivot and do something else, or do things differently until you find what works. Once you know what works, it gets easier. So ask yourself this: what’s stopping you?
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