5 Pandemic-Era Online Side Hustles to Make Ends Meet
- I’ve had lots of side gigs for years, and had to get pretty creative during the pandemic with them.
- Side hustles have become especially popular now as more people face financial uncertainty.
- Some include freelancing, being a virtual assistant, selling merchandise, and creating online courses.
- Read more at Personal Finance Insider.
I’ve been obsessed with side hustles ever since I was laid off from a full-time job in 2015. That’s when I knew that I wanted to be self-employed and that in order to pay my bills, I needed to have multiple streams of income. I started freelancing and selling merchandise, e-books, and online courses.
During the pandemic, a lot of my income disappeared or was put on pause. This prompted me to look for even more creative side hustles that I could do from home to keep my income up. I even created a newsletter about odd side hustles, and how people could make money from their couch.
According to a study from MassMutual, 56% of millennials took on a side hustle during the pandemic. After doing some research on websites like Upwork and Fiverr, I put together a list of popular side gigs for people interested in making some additional cash.
If you’re just getting into the world of side hustles and you’re not quite sure where to start, you might want to pick a skill you have that’s in demand — like writing, editing, or graphic design — and offer your services on a platform like Fiverr or Upwork.
You can set your fee for different services based on your years of experience and market them on websites like Linkedin or in Facebook groups, where people are often looking for additional help.
According to Upwork, the average freelancer in the United states earns around $20 an hour. Freelancers working in areas like web development, marketing, legal consultation, or accounting can earn an average of $28 or higher.
2. Selling and renting your stuff
If you’re busy cleaning out your home, you can place random items for sale using sites like OfferUp and Poshmark. You can earn anywhere from a couple of hundred to a few thousand dollars doing this, depending on the demand for the items that you’re selling, and their condition.
If you want to hold onto your items but still make a little money, you might be interested in Loanables, which is a website that allows people to use your stuff for a fee and return it when they are done.
On websites like Peerspace and AirBnB you can offer up your space when you don’t need it for events or photo shoots, and you can rent out storage space in your home to people on Neighbor.com.
These options are ideal for someone who doesn’t want to commit to regular hours working on a side hustle.
3. Creating merchandise with a print-on-demand store
If you’ve always been curious about selling products online but didn’t want to deal with the costs of producing and storing inventory, you might want to consider print-on-demand stores.
According to Printful.com, print-on-demand is a fulfillment method where orders are printed as soon as a customer purchases an item. This means you don’t have to invest the cash to create 1,000 t-shirts or 1,000 books before they are sold.
Other than design fees associated with the initial creation of the product and marketing costs, you can start this with low overhead.
Depending on which site you use, one downside is that products might cost you more to create due to print on demand fees, which in turn might spike the price up for your customers.
4. Hosting an online course
Creating an online course is something you can do if you have a lot of knowledge or experience with an in-demand skill, hobby, or passion. Start-up costs for this are low, since the only things you need are a course-hosting platform like Thinkific or Teachable, a computer, and a video camera.
While you can earn quite a range selling online courses, a lot of your income depends on how many people you can get to buy your course.
Online Course Igniter says a person can make anywhere from $500 to $50,000 teaching online courses depending on your audience and how much you charge for the course.
5. Becoming a virtual assistant
If you’re someone who prides themselves on organization, accountability, and the art of getting a lot of tasks done in a timely manner, you may want to consider becoming a virtual assistant, which are independent contractors who support clients remotely.
While people hire virtual assistants for all different tasks, some of the most popular ones are for administrative duties, marketing services, or other to-do’s that keep the business on track and flourishing.
When it comes to pay, Indeed.com says that the average virtual assistant in the U.S. makes around $19.50 per hour.