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Millennials are known for being a resourceful generation who are eager to find creative solutions to financial problems. Especially when it comes to side hustle, 64% of millennials say they have it or have had it in the past, according to CNBC. A side hustle is a small business or gig that you do in your spare time, even while having a full-time job. Almost anything can be a side hustle if you’re passionate about it, good at it and there’s a demand.
So millennials, here are 25 easy side hustle ideas that could net you $1,000+ per month in 2021. Read on and then get out there to try the side hustle that catches your eye.
25 Millennial Side Hustle Ideas
1. Start an ecommerce business.
Determine what you want to sell and how to sell online. A common way to start out in ecommerce is with dropshipping. With a trusted supplier, this can be a great option as it allows you to enter the market to sell without having to personally acquire or store inventory. Here are some options:
i) Become an Amazon Seller
Did you know that millennials are the highest users of Amazon among all generations? So, why not reach the audience it'd be very easy to sell to? Consider selling your inventory on Amazon! This will bring you access to a massive online marketplace where you can peddle your wares at leisure. Here's where you can start - download our no-frill but free guide on how to start an Amazon business.
ii) Become an Etsy seller
If you are a craftsman, an artisan or related homemade aficionado, an Etsy shop could be the perfect place for you to begin a side hustle. Learn directly from Etsy influencers on how to have a successful Etsy shop.
iii) Become an eBay seller
As per Statista, during a January 2020 survey of online sellers in the United States, it was found that eBay was the most popular marketplace with a total score of 6.53 on a 10-point scale! Doesn't it already get your creative ideas rolling? Getting started on eBay is as simple as it can get. Having the option to get bids on your products is a major hit among eBay sellers. You could either go the fixed rpicebidding route or set up a fixed price for your products.
2. Become a Consultant
The world is your oyster hasn't been more relevant than it is today. A 2017 survey by AND.co said that 21% of independent workers in the US work as professional services consultants.
What is that one thing at your workplace or friends & family gatherings that everybody comes to you for? Once you pin down your area of expertise/niche, you can start offering expert advice as a consultant to businesses. Our how to start a consulting business guide covers all the steps you need to get started immediately.
3. Start a Podcast
With 800,000 active podcasts in the world, if your podcast has approximately 10,000 downloads per episode, you can expect to make between $500 – $900 per episode in affiliate sales. Once you start to build traffic to your podcast, it becomes much easier to monetize by selling ads or sponsorships. Presentation, delivery & performance matters as much as the topic, specially if you're a niche subject. Once you have gained a captive audience over time, it'll be much more than $1000 a month.
4. Start a YouTube Channel
As per Forbes, Ryan Kaji was the top-earning YouTuber in 2020, with an estimate of $29.5 million. Now that's something! If creating videos and creativity itself is where your "perfect pass time" resides, then YouTub-ing could be for you. Once you hit a certain number of followers and views per video, you can earn advertising money through YouTube's Partner Program. There are also brands and companies that look to partner with YouTubers to promote their products. These sponsorships can earn you money as well.
5. Become a Real Estate Agent
According to a survey by NAR, real estate agents with two years or less experience had a median income of $9,300! Woah! As a side gig, becoming a real estate agent in most states requires a fair amount of industry schooling and a fairly rigorous test in order to become licensed. This can be done in under a year if this is something you want to commit to, but you would want to look at the specifics of becoming licensed in your own state. Real estate is booming right now — houses are flying off the market so fast you can barely get in the front door to see them. If you love building relationships with people, searching Zillow for homes, doing home improvement projects and watching HGTV shows, a side hustle in real estate might lead to a new career.
It doesn't end here. Within the real estate industry, you could also explore other options such as becoming a real estate writer (very niche!)/blogger, take on property management, house hacking, and buying houses to flip - the opportunities are endless.
6. Start Your Own Yoga Studio
Maybe not something you would want to do with a gathering of hundreds of people or participate in "International Yoga Day" events - we'll leave that to you for the upcoming year, maybe. For now, with the increase in people working from home and not having the space to "flex", an online yoga studio just does the trick. Full-time employees, pregnant women, stay-at-home moms and dads, partners, fitness freaks, children - pretty much everyone benefits from a yoga pose or two. Earning at the rate of up to $100 an hour, you could earn some pretty good bucks on the side. Ensure you're certified by a credible yoga association before you begin teaching.
7. Tiny Houses on the Wheels
Thanks to the rise in digital nomads and people working from home, starting up businesses from their garage and striking up a conversation about a possible business funding in a zoom call, one thing is common - roof over their heads. Plenty of teen-entrepreneurs, college students, fresh graduates and even veterans are looking to follow their passion while not following the same road. If building up homes interests you, then this is a perfect side gig for you.
8. Sign up for a Rebate App like Ibotta
While this may not be a huge moneymaker, Ibotta is a great side gig that doesn’t require much work. Basically, you select the rebate offers that match up with your shopping, you shop and then you get rebates based on those offers. You can connect your loyalty accounts, upload your receipts or even start your shopping trips from the Ibotta app. If you happen to be a personal shopper, this is an excellent tool to use in tandem to increase your side hustle income!
9. Become a Personal Shopper with Instacart or Dumpling
Do you love to shop? Save your dollars and be someone’s personal shopper to satisfy that need to get out there and buy things! As an Instacart shopper, you will receive a customer order through the Instacart app, accept or decline the gig and then shop and deliver to the customer's door. This service became wildly popular during the pandemic for those who could not leave their homes. Dumpling is another grocery delivery app that helps people start their own businesses as personal shoppers.
10. Start a Car Detailing Business
If you love to get your car to that next level of sparkle, this could be a great side gig for you. Perhaps you already have all the car detailing products for your own car, making this a fairly inexpensive way to start out a new side hustle. Look to local online platforms to find clients, such as Nextdoor and Craigslist.
11. Start Your Own Wellness App
Found an interesting way to remain fit that'll appeal to even those who shy away from any kind of workout? Well, you've found yourself a side hustle from the comfort of your and well, their home. Hire an app developer and launch your own fitness dream. Look up any fitness certifications you need beforehand in order to get started.
12. Become a Dasher with DoorDash
You’ve probably received a DoorDash delivery a time or two, and this one is pretty self-explanatory. Someone orders food from a restaurant, you pick up the order and then deliver it to the customer. You can decide when you want to be available, but of course, this side gig is dependent upon someone wanting to order so you can deliver.
13. Choose an MLM (multi-level marketing) business
There are a plethora of MLMs out there and each offers its own particular structure for success. Direct sales companies offer a viable way to bring in extra income, oftentimes with a tried-and-true sales process you can follow along with. If you decide to go the MLM route, be sure to select a reputable company with a product or service you believe in. Start with family and friends and work outward from there!
14. Take Online Surveys
There are a number of websites that will pay you to take online surveys. Sign up with reputable ones like Swagbucks and Nielsen. Fill out the demographic information so they can send surveys that match you. This is a great option for filling in time when you can’t leave the house or can’t always commit to a particular schedule or set number of hours per week.
15. Offer Tutoring Services
If you are particularly skilled in an area, consider tutoring. Don’t limit yourself to math or reading — consider music, art and sports as well. Anything you are especially good at could be put to use as a tutoring service for someone who needs learning help. You can reach out to your own network, or use a site like VIPKID, PrepNow Tutoring or Revolution Prep.
16. Offer Portfolio Making Services
Much like resumes are difficult for a lot of people to write, there are plenty of people out there who would be happy to pay a few bucks to get their portfolios created . If you have an eye for "what sells" or you know how to highlight people's strengths portfolio writing is a lucrative side hustle that you can do on your own time from the comfort of your own home. Be prepared to have samples of your work to present to clients if needed. You could even create one such company for yourself that hires portfolio writers. Who said you can't make more than $1000 a month?!
17. Become a Niche Writer
If you love to write and are in a super thin niche, why not make a side gig out of it? Collect some samples of your writing and consider putting together a website where you can direct potential clients. Think about what types of writing you want to specialize in and then get out there and market yourself as a freelance writer. Sites like Upwork and Fiverr can be a good place to start, but you may have better luck reaching out to companies directly.
18. Become a Transcriptionist
If you have spectacular attention to detail, consider starting a transcription side gig. Listen to recorded trainings, podcasts, meetings, etc., and transcribe them word for word. You will need a place to be able to listen closely and the ability to do frequent playbacks to ensure you are providing accurate work. Some top companies that hire remote transcriptionists include GoTranscript, Rev and TranscribeMe.
19. Write Book Reviews
Authors need reviews for their books, and some companies will pay you for those reviews. The requirements vary, as does the pay based on experience, but if you love to read, this could be a great option. Be prepared to provide a resume, writing samples and your reviewing experience when applying. Some sites require that you have a blog where the book review must be added, and others will have you send the review in. Kirkus Reviews and the US Review of Books are two places that will pay for reviews.
20. Offer Social Media Management Services to Small Businesses and Start-ups
If you are a social media savvy individual, this is a great opportunity to help companies build their brand while you build your portfolio. Setting up and managing social media accounts is a huge job; finding content alone can be a daunting task if you aren’t well versed in it. Most Millennials have grown up through the boom years of social media, so it might be easier for these young adults to understand trends, authentic brand voices and the dos and don’ts of social media engagement. Plus, if you already have experience, you could make up to $120 an hour.
21. Become a Dog Walker/Dog Sitter
This is a great opportunity to make extra money and get your steps in for the day. Many dog walkers will eventually be asked to dog sit if the owners go out of town, opening up another side hustle door. Your dog walking business could be done through word of mouth, or you can look at apps that connect dog sitters with clients, such as Rover and Wag.
22. Create Games for Occasions
Ever been invited to a bridal drinking game? Or a high-tea UNO? Games for special occasions aren't new and aren't going to be a thing of the past anytime soon no matter how much exposure we've had with social media and the virtual world. When people get together, they still prefer traditional, one-on-one human touch games. If you're a creative thinker and coming up with ideas on your feet is something you do easily, then this is an interesting side hustle for you. Create games for multiple occasions and list them up on your own mini-website. Don't forget to trademark them and you're ready to sell and make some good money on the side.
Come summers and there are plenty of people going out of town on vacations or to meet family that doesn't stay close-by. Sure, the current situation doesn't warrant going out of the house, let alone on a vacation but this might soon end. Housesitting offers plenty to opportunities to earn some extra buck and sometimes big bucks depending upon the location and the size of the house. Sign up on sites such as MindMyHouse.com and Housecarers.com for a nominal annual fee and get started.
24. Play Video Games
If you're a gamer and pretty good one at that, then this is a perfect side hustle. Youtube Gaming and Twitch offer live-streaming opportunities for your video games where hundreds and thousands of people wait to watch a good game. If you're a pro, then it won't be long before you have built yourself a big audience which you can easily monetize.
25. Become an Influencer
An average influencer takes home anywhere between $30,000 - $100,000 per year! This isn't new and platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat, etc are giving people of all ages the opportunities to influence the world in their own unique ways. Millennials specially have created a huge space in the recent years on social platforms and it's not going to change for a while. If you've got the gift of the gab, confidence, and a few ideas up your sleeves about what you're going to offering your audience, this could really be everything you ever wanted to do. Besides, once you've acquired a few thousand followers, making $1000 a month would just be beginning of it.
This is just a small sampling of the many ways to make money with side hustles. The beauty of a side gig is that it’s all about what fits your interests, talents and lifestyle best. Try a few of our ideas, and we challenge you to come up with some of your own. And if you’re ready to start making some serious money with your side hustle, be sure to form an LLC or other legal business entity for your business.
Ben Gran is a freelance writer from Des Moines, Iowa. Ben has written for Fortune 500 companies, the Governor of Iowa (who now serves as U.S. Secretary of Agriculture), the U.S. Secretary of the Navy, and many corporate clients. He writes about entrepreneurship, technology, food and other areas of great personal interest.
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