Last Updated on January 12, 2021 by Emma
Side hustles are a great way to make extra money alongside your existing job or business in 2020. I’ve tried many of them over the last two years to varying degrees of success, so here is my assessment of the best sides hustles in 2020.
Best side hustles
Matched betting is something that I initially thought fell into that ‘too good to be true, so it must be a scam’ pot of ways to make money. After doing a ton of research I dipped my toe in and found that it is a genuine way to make a decent amount of cash if you put the time in. What’s more; the money is tax free! So no need to fill in an additional tax form. What you make is what you keep.
Contrary to popular demand, matched betting is not gambling. You place bets in a way that means you are guaranteed to make a profit on every race, due to free bets and offers that you get from bookies.
If you’re anything like me, it can be baffling to know where to start. I signed up with a service specifically for matched betters in the UK called Profit Accumulator and found it a very simple to use system. They give you step by step written and video instructions for each type of bet you will place. As long as you follow those details you can’t go wrong.
So far I’ve earnt just over £2,000 tax free from matched betting doing it every now and again on a very part-time basis, and another £1,000 tax free from risk free casino offers that I initially learned about on Profit Accumulator.
Become a freelancer
So far my most lucrative side hustle has been freelance projects on Upwork. A freelancer essentially works on a project basis with a range of different clients offering skills that they need.
Some people ask – what would people be willing to pay me for? If you have a job, a hobby or a talent the chances are that you have a skill that you can monetise. Some examples of skills that you can monetise are:
- Project Management
- Graphic Design
- Consultancy in a specific field
- Proof Reading
- Data Entry
There are a number of platforms that you can use to monetise to promote your freelance skills. You simply create a profile and start bidding on jobs. Some of the most popular platforms are:
- PeoplePerHour (UK only)
- Guru (writing)
- Toptal (for the top talent in the freelance work in specific skill sets)
- Fiverr (tends to be lower-paying)
At the time of writing this article of have made just over $12,000 through Upwork for various writing projects for clients all over the world. I’ve found it an easy way to find clients and ensure I get paid, though of course Upwork take a cut of my earnings in return for the service they offer me.
If you a native speaker of English or other popular languages then chances are you will be able to find an online teaching company that you can work for. These companies are varied in terms of the qualifications they ask for. Some simple want native speakers with passion and raw skill to teach, others ask for qualifications such as a TEFL or TESOL and some teaching experience.
Many of the companies provide materials for you to teach so there is no lesson planning. Alternatively, you can sign up with a provider such as Outschool that lets you create your own classes and markets them for you. That’s more work but the potential earnings are higher, and you don’t need to have specific qualifications. You can find out more about Outschool at the following links:
I personally tested out teaching English as a foreign language during the Covid-19 lockdown, for three months, and I enjoyed trying something completely new. I did it on a part-time basis (lunchtimes and weekends) and in total earned £3,000 during this period.
Create a blog
If you have a passion for writing and want to create content that helps people, then blogging might just be the perfect side hustle for you.
All you need to get started is an idea of what you want to blog about and a website with hosting. I knew that I wanted to help people make and save money so I had the first part all figured out. However, I was clueless on the second part so I signed up with a service that one of my close friends recommended to me; Wealthy Affiliate. They show you how to create a WordPress blog and train you on how to monetise it so it really is a one-stop-shop.
You can read more about blogging in my article How to Make Money Blogging.
Sell on eBay
So far my personal eBay money-making experiences have been limited to selling old mobile phones when I’ve updated and unwanted personal possessions. However, I am in a Facebook group in which many of the members make a nice side income by reselling items on eBay, meaning that they buy items for a lower price and then sell them at a profit once eBay’s fees and postage costs are deducted.
It can be quite time consuming to initially list your items and to post them and it’s important to price your items so that you make a profit once all the fees are deducted.
I ventured into creating my own Amazon store, with the help of a specific Amazon selling provider. My experiences there were less positive due to my store getting suspended by Amazon, and it took me five months to convince them to give me the money for my sales. While this isn’t a side hustle that I can personally recommend based on my own experiences, you can find case studies of others who have had more success.
Take part in research studies
I really enjoy taking part in research studies; it’s a simple way to often have some fun and really make a different to a particular business or charity while getting paid. There are numerous sites that you can use to get these gigs in the UK and at the moment I use a site called takepartinresearch.co.uk, which contains opportunities for both face-to-face and virtual research opportunities.
So far I’ve taken part in two projects, which in total will pay £400. The first related to foreign exchange services that I use and the second, which I am still taking part in, is a study around the impacts of Covid-19 on society.
There are numerous sites that will pay you to complete mystery shopping assignments in your local areas, whether that is reviewing displays in shops or giving your opinion about your dining experience at a restaurant.
At the moment my favourite mystery shopping site in the UK is Marketforce. The site connects you with mystery shopping opportunities in your local areas and so far I’ve been paid around £75 to go out for free meals. Not bad!
Side hustles are great additional sources of income
I’ve had a great experience with different side hustles. If you can avoid the scams and procrastination, then they are an excellent way to learn new skills, work with new people and diversify your income.
What have been your experiences with side hustles? Which one do you think is the best? I’d love to read your comments below.
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