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Could one of your skills make you money as a side hustle? We’ve analyzed the earning potential of freelancers who are currently selling their services online to see which jobs can be the most lucrative on a part-time schedule.

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The estimated earnings of 8,605 part-time freelancers who are currently selling their services:

$ 3,518,565

has been earned in OECD countries

united-states flag

$ 1,135,950

has been earned in the United States

united-kingdom flag

$ 654,045

has been earned in the United Kingdom

canada flag

$ 238,945

has been earned in Canada

australia flag

$ 107,275

has been earned in Australia

Earnings are estimated according to the number of service reviews each freelancer in our analysis has received multiplied by the base price of their service. Our analysis included 8,605 active sellers for 50 popular jobs on Fiverr as of March 2021 who fitted our criteria of a side hustle freelancer.

Earnings

How much have side hustle-type services earned?

Based on the earnings of part-time freelancers, we calculated the top ten side hustles for making money. Worldwide, illustration jobs posted by side hustle sellers have netted more in sales than any other type of service. Proofreading and editing is also one of the most lucrative side hustle gigs.

Top 10 ranking of jobs

Based on each job's total estimated earnings by active part-time freelancers as of March 2021

#

Job

Total sales

1

Illustration

$406,660

2

Proofreading and editing

$341,945

3

Animation

$309,290

4

Video editor

$282,530

5

Social media advertising

$276,655

6

Blog post services

$222,220

7

Website design

$215,235

8

CV, cover letter, and resume writing

$177,545

9

Translation services

$177,535

10

Book cover artist

$139,870

Based on the base price of each service offered and the total number of sales per part-time freelancer offering a service to be completed in three days or fewer, i.e. within a side hustler’s timeframe.

Jobs

Which jobs can command the highest fees as a side hustler?

We analyzed the price range of jobs advertised by part-time freelancers to reveal which side hustle services can command the most money online. Worldwide, mobile app development gigs that fell into our criteria of a side hustle commanded up to $860 per job. That’s more than any other type of service.

Price range

Average price

Top 10 ranking of jobs

Based on the range of costs per service as of March 2021

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#
Job
$0
$300
$600
$900
1
Mobile app development
2
Video editor
2
Business card design
2
Video making
5
Website design
6
Social media manager
7
Proofreading and editing
8
Animation
9
Social media advertising
9
CV, cover letter, and resume writing
9
Ghostwriting
Based on the range of and average earnings of part-time freelancers offering a service to be completed in three days or fewer, i.e. within a side hustler’s timeframe.

Which jobs are most popular for side hustling timeframes?

Our analysis of OECD countries reveals which jobs are most popular among freelancers offering a service that could be completed in three days or fewer. We discovered that translation services were offered by more freelancers (16,169) than any other type of job within a side hustler’s timeframe.

Top 10 ranking of jobs

Based on number of active side hustle-type services that can be completed in three days or fewer as of March 2021

#

Job

Number of services

1

Translation services

16,169

2

Proofreading and editing

11,870

3

Illustration

8,677

4

Video editor

8,525

5

Social media advertising

7,948

6

Animation

5,494

7

Website design

4,004

8

Blog post services

3,645

9

CV, cover letter, and resume writing

2,889

10

Ghostwriting

2,772

Based on the number of freelancers offering a job to be completed in three days or fewer, i.e. within a side hustler’s timeframe.

Worldwide

In which countries can side hustle services earn the most?

Based on the earnings of active freelancers offering their services within a side hustle timeframe, we estimated the top ten highest-earning OECD countries for side hustles. US-based side hustlers top the ranking, having made the most from the online jobs included in our analysis.

Total earnings

Average earnings

Top 10 ranking of countries by total sales

Based on total side hustle fees for countries around the world as of March 2021

#

Country or region

Total sales

1

United States

$1,135,950

2

United Kingdom

$654,045

3

Italy

$260,980

4

Canada

$238,945

5

Germany

$187,680

6

Spain

$136,345

7

Australia

$107,275

8

Israel

$76,655

9

Mexico

$73,580

10

France

$69,350

Based on the base price of 50 popular jobs offered and the total number of sales per part-time freelancer offering a service to be completed in three days or fewer.

Pre-lockdown vs lockdown

According to the International Labour Organization, the equivalent of 255 million full-time jobs were lost globally in 2020. This may partly explain why freelance job completions increased by 6.5% from before the pandemic-enforced lockdowns to during. We estimated this by comparing the number of completed jobs before and after March 2020 – the start of most global lockdowns.

Lockdown overall

Lockdown jobs

Lockdown saw completed jobs increase by 6.5%

spaceship-img

Pre-lockdown

46.7%

Lockdown

53.3%

Expert Tips

How to make your side hustle business stand out

Brought to you by Canva

1. Build your brand

However many hours you dedicate a week to your side hustle, it’s important to establish a strong, memorable, and positive brand that sets you apart from your competitors. Before you start, take the time to think about how you want to represent your services to the world. It’s particularly key to know your target market and research the best ways on how to appeal to them with your brand.

Even if your side hustle has gained enough traction on freelancer websites like Fiverr, it’s a good idea to build an independent website just for your business, with a simple and memorable business name and URL to match. Don’t worry – you don’t need to be an expert designer or coder to get started as there are lots of free and paid options online for building your website with templates and drag-and-drop features. Your logo and any other graphic design assets you need can be designed on Canva for free. Make sure everything flows and fits together and reflects the brand you want to show off.

Your website needs to be enjoyable for users to navigate and easy for them to find your contact details, check out your past work, and use your services. Featuring testimonials and ratings from past clients is one way to boost your trustworthiness online, as is keeping your website professional and working smoothly – which means no spelling mistakes, dead links, or unnecessary errors.

2. Plan your marketing strategy

Even if your side hustle mostly takes place offline, your business needs an online presence. It’s paramount that your business is represented in the right way and on the right social media platforms. As it’s by far the most popular social media platform in the world, start by setting up a Facebook page with lots of key information about your services for prospective clients. Instagram, X/Twitter, Pinterest, and TikTok are hugely popular with younger people and your competitors are likely already building their followings on those platforms – so make sure your business isn’t left behind.

If you have your own business website, try your hand at SEO (search engine optimization) strategies to get your page ranked higher on Google. With most users only ever visiting the first page of Google results, getting your business ranked highly is key. Fortunately, there are lots of free tools and resources on the web to help you analyze your website’s SEO performance and make the recommended improvements.

Your ultimate goal is to become known as the foremost authority in your area of business. You’ll want customers to associate your brand with high-quality service and content and want to share what you create. Producing insightful and shareable blog posts and newsletters to promote on your website and social media channels will reinforce your business’s authority in the industry.

3. Get customers raving

You can entice more people into using your services by providing excellent customer service wherever you can. Your goal is to create a strong, positive customer experience that compels users to leave fantastic reviews and ratings – prompting new users to trust you as well.

Sincerely empathizing and working on solutions with your customers is a surefire way to be remembered for providing excellent customer service. Make sure to always respond quickly to customer inquiries and feedback so they aren’t waiting too long and getting frustrated with you.

You might want to build customer relationships further with reward schemes for loyal customers and service guarantees for those who need extra peace of mind when ordering from you for the first time. Ultimately, whether you spend a few hours a week or most of your time on your new side hustle business, your customers will be the ones who can make or break it.