Best Side Hustle Startup Ideas
One of the most versatile startup ideas is blogging. Not only can you blog from anywhere, but there is also no limit to the number of topics your blog can be about. As long as there is a market of readers for it, you can make a blog out of it.
A few of the common blog topics are food, fashion, and finance, but that doesn’t mean you can’t think outside the box. The best blog concepts are born out of a blogger's desire to create content around something they are truly passionate about.
Recommended: Check out our full list of Online Startup Ideas.
The podcasting industry has seen extreme growth in recent years with no end in sight,, which means the time to start a podcast as your side hustle is now. Much like blogging, podcasts can be about anything as long as you can find a market of listeners to tap into. Common podcast topics include health and wellness, history, and true crime. However, the options for podcast topics are pretty much endless.
3. Handcrafted Products
Handmade, artisanal goods never go out of style. Selling handcrafted products offers you the flexibility of selling your goods online, in established retailers, or at local markets. The first step involves determining the product(s) you’ll make. This could include food products, pet toys, wooden furniture, or many other items. To successfully sell handcrafted products, remember to focus on product quality and cater to the right niche market.
4. Social Media Influencer
A successful social media influencer almost always understands how to create and effectively market a brand. If you think you’re up to the challenge, this can make a lucrative and exciting startup idea.
Influencers earn money through brand deals. Because every industry has influencers, you’re more likely to generate a large viewership and build a strong brand if you focus on a specific industry or niche for which you have a passion. In addition, you’ll need to feel comfortable with public speaking and connecting with your audience in order to attract brands that want to work with you.
5. Review Website
Like most people, you probably search online for reviews before you spend your money at an unfamiliar business. Review websites hold businesses accountable by giving people insights about them so potential customers can make an informed decision.
You can easily start and manage this kind of website with a minimal budget, making it a perfect side hustle. In order to run a successful review website, you’ll need to gain credibility with customers and differentiate your site from larger review sites like Yelp.
Any subject in which you’re proficient — like math, English, or science — can provide a potential tutoring opportunity. Tutoring businesses can charge by the session or the hour. You can easily market this type of business within your school, at the public library, or in community centers — wherever students spend their time in your area.
Recommended: Check out our full list of Startup Ideas for Education Entrepreneurs.
7. Art Business
An art business can operate either by taking commissions or selling art online and in local shops. To gain exposure for your art business, consider partnering with a local business like a coffee shop to display your work inside their location. In addition, renting a booth at your local farmers market can increase your brand exposure and drive sales or commissions of custom work.
8. Freelance Writing
If you’re a skilled or talented writer, freelance writing might provide a great way for you to make money without impeding on your current schedule. Freelance writers of all kinds are in demand by businesses and publications looking for temporary employees to write blog posts, articles, and other content. Sites like Upwork® and WriterAccess® provide a secure platform for businesses and freelancers to connect while reducing the amount of time and resources you would otherwise spend on marketing.
If you like the idea of an ecommerce startup but don’t have the space to commit to storing products, dropshipping could be the perfect side hustle startup idea for you. Dropshipping startups simply take customer’s orders online, but instead of filling orders themselves, they are sent to a third-party retailer for fulfillment. Save yourself the hassle of inventory management and high overhead costs; this startup consists only of customer experience management, marketing, and curating items.
10. Dog Walking
Pet owners who travel, work full time, or can’t walk their dogs regularly need dependable dog walkers to help out. Before starting this type of business, you should have experience walking or caring for dogs of all sizes. You won’t always walk a Chihuahua, so you’ll need to feel comfortable walking larger, higher-energy breeds as well.
Strong organizational skills are essential for success in this business. You don’t want to overbook or double-book yourself. Keeping an organized schedule will help you manage your time and give your customers peace of mind, knowing their animals will be taken care of in a timely manner.
Recommended: Check out our full list of Startup Ideas for Animal Lovers.
11. Virtual Assistant
You don’t have to be in an office to help businesses and fellow entrepreneurs get organized. A virtual assistant startup is a great business idea for organized, task-oriented individuals. If this sounds like you, it is easy to get started by utilizing sites that can help you find work you’re interested in. Get a competitive edge by diversifying your skill set to make yourself eligible for a litany of job opportunities.
12. Babysitting Business
This side hustle requires little more than trustworthiness and some experience taking care of children. Building credibility with parents and your community will increase the likelihood of scoring babysitting jobs in your area. Once you establish yourself as a great babysitter, you’ll have the ability to book more jobs and grow your business.
Babysitters can charge by the hour, by the number of children in their care, or by a flat rate. The amount you charge should depend on your experience as a babysitter as well as the standard rate in your area.
If you already spend a lot of time playing video games, why not make it a business venture? Livestreaming essentially involves broadcasting live footage of your game as you play, using a platform like TWITCH® or Smashcast®. Once you obtain the minimum number of followers (e.g., 500 on TWITCH), you can become a partner of the livestreaming site and begin to make money based on the traffic your streams generate.
14. Graphic Design
Many businesses and organizations need graphic designers to create visual branding for use on everything from signage to marketing materials. Because graphic design is a fairly broad industry, having a multifaceted skill set can prove extremely beneficial. For example, proficiency in logo design, typography, or web design can help you book more clients and build your portfolio. Once you’ve established a strong set of skills, graphic design can be easily done on a freelance basis allowing you to maintain your current schedule.
15. Pet Sitting
As with babysitting, a pet-sitting business depends on the level of trust you can develop with pet owners in your community. It’s best if you have experience taking care of animals — even just caring for your family pet at some point.
Pet sitters can charge by the day, by the animal, or by a flat rate. One of the benefits of starting this type of side hustle is, in many cases, taking care of a pet won’t interfere with your full-time job, making it a side hustle worth trying.
16. YouTube Channel
YouTube has billions of subscribers worldwide, which means the platform offers a great opportunity for new channels and video content. Starting your own video channel can resemble a form of blogging (called “vlogging”) or provide a space for you to teach a skill or share a hobby. If you have a passion for ceramics, for example, you could start an entire channel about your process from clay to kiln.
Social media platforms focus on making connections, and YouTube is no exception. Every industry or hobby has the potential to connect with thousands of YouTube subscribers, which you could parlay into a lucrative business venture.
17. Cleaning Startup
You can start a successful cleaning startup in several ways. For example, you could start a house-cleaning business, an office-cleaning business, or a graffiti-cleaning business, among others. This type of startup has low initial costs and flexible hours making it an ideal side hustle. You can schedule as many clients as you can manage based on your availability. Overhead costs include marketing materials, cleaning supplies, and vehicle expenses, which means it’ll cost very little to launch your cleaning startup.
18. House Sitting
Leaving your house unattended while traveling can often feel stressful. A house-sitting business gives homeowners the peace of mind that comes with knowing someone will regularly check on their valuables and take care of tasks like watering plants and collecting mail. The key to a successful house-sitting business is credibility. Establishing trust with homeowners in your community is critical to running a sustainable house-sitting business.
You also may want to consider combining two startup ideas by offering both house-sitting and pet-sitting services. Boarding animals is expensive and stressful for many pet owners, so offering a combined service can make your business more appealing. This approach also can potentially allow you to charge more for your services.
19. Web Design
Web design startups focus solely on creating an aesthetically pleasing, well-branded website for businesses and individuals. If you have the skills to accomplish this already, you can start and operate this business with only a little money for marketing. With a litany of web design services available, your startup needs to stand out from the competition. The best way to create a unique web design startup is to establish a trademark design style and learn advanced design techniques that will take your finished web designs to the next level.
20. Organization Service
Few people naturally possess strong organizational skills. If you’re one of those few, an organization service may represent the perfect side hustle for you. Professional organizing services not only help customers tidy up cluttered spaces but also help them develop the organizational skills they need to maintain order going forward. One of the benefits of starting this type of business is that you can operate it either in person by visiting customers’ homes and offices or virtually by conducting video consultations — giving you the opportunity to maintain a flexible schedule.
21. Photography Startup
Photography isn’t just a fun hobby, it also can make a lucrative business. If you have access to camera equipment and some photography experience, you can pursue this low-cost side hustle idea at any age.
Depending on the type of photography you do, you can approach this business in different ways. For example, you could work as a photographer for hire who takes senior portraits, engagement photos, and images of other life events. Alternatively, you can sell prints of your work online or in local shops.
22. Lawn Care
Put your green thumb to good use by starting a lawn care business. It’s an easy, low-cost business to start with strong earning potential. Plus, it offers a flexible schedule conducive to a side hustle and the chance to spend your days outside.
To gain traction for your business, consider investing in brochures that outline your services and pricing. Distribute those brochures to homes with lawns that may appreciate your services. Remember, closer customers will reduce your fuel costs as you drive to different houses with your equipment.
23. Etsy Entrepreneur
Are you a crafter or an artist? If yes, you could sell your creations by becoming an Etsy entrepreneur. If you aren’t familiar with Etsy, it’s an online marketplace where people sell their handmade goods. By selling on Etsy, you can benefit from its built-in ecommerce platform and instant brand exposure that enables people searching for similar products to easily find your shop.
To set your Etsy shop apart from the competition, offer distinctive, well-made goods with a personal touch. Consider offering customization on products for customers, if possible, and invest in attractive packaging.
24. Online Coach
Help customers reach their personal and professional goals by creating an online coaching startup. The beauty of an online coaching startup is that there are limitless possibilities for the type of coaching you can do, and it costs virtually nothing to start. Whatever your specialty is, there are most likely people looking for help in that area — you just need to find them using marketing strategies that appeal to your target audience. The goal is simply to give customers the tools and support they need to reach important milestones using your interpersonal skills and expertise.
25. Video Editing Service
Video editors trim and splice together pre-recorded footage to create a single, comprehensive, and engaging reel. Starting your own video editing service requires little capital to get started, just the necessary software, skill set, and a reel to showcase your video editing abilities. Because video editing can be done by a freelancer, this is an ideal side hustle to bring in extra cash without a substantial time commitment.
26. Online Vintage Boutique
Selling vintage or secondhand extends the life cycle of clothing or household items, making this a great side hustle startup idea for those who prioritize sustainability and love fashion. The most substantial time commitment you will have with this type of business is sourcing the clothing or goods you can sell by visiting local thrift stores, flea markets, or estate sales.
There are several ways to start an online vintage business, the first being launching your own website and dedicating a bit of your time and resources to marketing. Second, you can choose to utilize an existing platform such as Depop, Etsy, or Poshmark to make it easier for customers to find your shop — though you will be required to pay fees to the site.
27. Online Courses
You probably know the saying that knowledge is power, so it cannot be stressed enough how important it is to have access to a good education. Sharing knowledge through online courses makes education more accessible and provides a service for people who are interested in learning the skills you have to teach them. Furthermore, teaching an online course offers the flexibility of working remotely, making it a perfect side hustle startup idea.