The side hustle has become a staple for many Australians wanting to earn more money. Even before the coronavirus hit and businesses were forced to close their doors, the appeal of earning a little extra on the side has been irresistible.
Finder research from 2019 found the average Australian side-hustler earned an additional $7,300 over the course of the year.
However, over the past months, many Australians, along with much of the world’s population, have indeed found themselves struggling to make ends meet, prompting the need to find other sources of income.
The need for diversifying your income streams
As we head into ‘Isolation 2.0’, the need for a sustainable side hustle is becoming more apparent (particularly for our Victorian friends).
The good news is that finding alternate sources of income is easier than ever before. And, rather than slogging away and hoping you’ll secure that promotion that may or may not come with a raise (particularly in today’s climate), you can actually take matters into your own hands.
A lot of people think that in order to launch a side business, you need a lot of investment and spare cash. Well I’m here to tell you that’s simply not the case.
There are plenty of ways to create wealth and diversify your income streams so that you’re taking the risk out of it - just as you would your investments.
Head to the marketplace
To create wealth you have to diversify. One great and easy way to do this is head to one of the many marketplace-style businesses that already exist.
I’m talking about Fiverr, AirTasker, Uber, Freelancer, and Upwork. These are sites where you can quickly commoditise your skills (whether they are writing, designing, handiwork, delivery, or taking surveys) and turn them into that much-needed income!
Because you’re working within an existing business structure, you don’t need to worry about setting up your own branding and assets or going out to pitch for new clients. This makes your life super easy. However, be aware that many of these websites and companies will often take a percentage of your sales in order to maintain your listing - so make sure you’re well researched before jumping in.
Release your inner entrepreneur
If joining a marketplace isn’t your thing, then why not take the leap and create your very own business or side hustle that utilises your skills?
I get it, the idea of starting your own business can be intimidating, but I promise you that it can be one of the most fulfilling experiences you will ever have. Plus, if you do it right, it’s a great way to make serious coin.
If you choose this path, the first step will be identifying your service offering. Most likely you’re humble and perhaps aren’t exactly sure what your skills are to base your business on. So, think about what people most often ask your advice on or help with. What are you genuinely passionate about?
What gets you up in the morning and dominates your conversations? These questions will give you some powerful answers - these are your proof of concept. It’s in your history and your own expertise. This becomes the main and easiest commodity to leverage off for your side hustle.
Once you’ve identified your area of expertise, the opportunities are endless. In addition to selling your services, you could, for example, create an online course in an area you are a subject matter expert in, like excel spreadsheets or design!
If you enjoy interacting with others, why not tutor people over Skype? This is an especially good opportunity given the amount of time everyone is spending indoors due to quarantine. You could even self-publish an eBook or audiobook for little to no investment, and list it online as a passive income earner.
You are the master of your own destiny
The current coronavirus pandemic has forced many of us to rethink the way we live and work.
Many Australians have faced redundancies, reduced hours or reduced pay as companies struggle to survive during this difficult time. While many will see this as a threat to their way of living, it’s important to realise the opportunities that are now available to you.
Now is the time to pursue that passion you’ve always dreamed of, to write that novel that’s been sitting in your head, to start sharing your skills with the world.
If you want to earn more, the power is in your hands to do so. What are you waiting for?
This piece was written originally for Yahoo Finance Australia.