No matter what is going on in the world around us, most of us are looking to find ways to give our income a boost. Taking on a side hustle and generating an extra source of income is a smart way to do this, but if you’re new to self-employment, sometimes it’s difficult to know where to start.
While there are a million ways to generate an income outside of your day job, a good place to start is to take a look at your hobbies. Chances are you already have some solid skills and experience in these areas and with some creative thinking, you may well be able to monetize them – and have fun!
Here’s how you can go from hobby to side hustle in five steps.
Step 1: Improve your skills
First things first. You might be fairly good at your hobby but you may still need to refine your skills before you’re ready to start making money from it.
For example, if you’re a baker you could attend a cake decorating class. If you’re a graphic designer, you could take a logo making or infographic course.
It might just be a case that you need to sharpen up your skills a little before you’re ready to start a side business doing what you love.
Step 2: Find your niche
Your next step is to find a niche.
If you’re a writer, you may want to try blogging or copywriting for other businesses. If you’re a crafter, you might decide to focus on the wedding market or children’s market.
Think about your skills and interests and what kinds of products or services you can offer – and how you can stand out from your competitors. Just about every market is saturated in every area in the modern world, so it’s crucial that you find something unique or interesting about what you’re able to do in order to attract customers.
Step 3: Decide where you will sell
This will all depend on your business and budget, but you’ll need to decide where you will sell. Will you invest in a website from the start, or will you start off by selling on social media and online marketplaces?
There are pros and cons to each platform so spend some time figuring out which is best for you.
Step 4: Take care of the legal stuff
Don’t forget there are some legal steps involved in setting up a side hustle.
Make sure you have set up the paperwork to ensure you’re paying the correct tax on your profits.
Also, depending on what you do or sell, you’ll probably need insurance to protect you and your customers. In the case of food-related businesses, things like health and hygiene certificates will be a legal requirement too.
Step 5: Market your business
Once you have products or services ready to sell and they’re listed on your platform of choice, your next step (and ongoing step) is to market them.
You need to ensure you’re connecting with the right buyers, and people who are likely to be interested in what you do are able to find you.
Marketing is incredibly complex.
For example, SEO rules change all the time, and you need to use the right techniques to ensure you’re not being penalized by search engines. If your budget allows, work with a marketing agency like Junto to take out the guesswork.
Also make sure you use a blend of traditional marketing (flyers, networking) and digital marketing (email, social media) to market your business.