Having at least one side hustle has quickly become the new norm in the United States. Over the years, there has been an increasing number of individuals with full-time jobs, taking on side gigs to make ends meet. This increase is a direct cause of rising inflation, an unsteady job market, and the mass layoffs that have hit the tech industry in the last year. Individuals everywhere realize they need at least a few streams of income for reassurance and peace of mind.
If you have a side hustle and a full-time job, just know you aren’t alone. According to Experian, at least 39% of working Americans have a side hustle. If you look at only millennials, the percentage rises to 50%. Side hustles help individuals boost their savings, pay down debt, or have more cash to spend.
If you’ve considered turning your side hustle into a full-time job, we’re here to help. We put together a guide you can use to prepare yourself for the future and slowly transition your side hustle into a full-time business.
Here’s how you can turn your side hustle into a full-time gig.
If you’ve made it this far, you’re likely passionate about your side hustle. Whether you like the flexibility side gigs provide or you’re passionate about the work you do on the side. Taking time to highlight your why will fuel your passion for your future and motivate you to take on new jobs. Whether it’s writing, design, or merchandising. Before you start your journey into entrepreneurship, make sure you know why you’re doing it, and that you feel passionate about what you’re doing.
It may have been all fun and games for the first few years, but if you want to turn your side hustle into a full-time business, it’s time to get more serious about the financial aspects of owning a business. To do this, you’ll want to develop a business plan that highlights your goals and desired outcomes. Ask yourself:
- How much income do you want to make in 2024?
- What are your current sales predictions?
- What do you need to do to reach your goals?
- How do you plan to stay accountable?
These desired outcomes will help you fine-tune your business plan and develop a cutting-edge strategy that aligns with the best side hustles in 2024.
To turn your side gig into a full-time business, you must start putting yourself out there and selling yourself. The best way to do this is to better understand your audience and niche. Do you currently do email marketing for eCommerce businesses? Are you more B2B or B2C focused? Maybe, you help small businesses with their digital marketing initiatives.
Once you know what you’re good at, you can use this to define your marketing strategy for reaching potential customers. You can develop case studies and gather reviews from past clients to use as social proof. This will help you establish credibility and slowly build your business.
Now, it’s time to start marketing your business and positioning yourself as an industry expert.
To do this, you’ll want to:
- Set up a website
- Create a blog
- Write a newsletter
- Host a free webinar
- Set up a Google My Business account
- Consider print ads in newspapers, billboards, or local magazines
- Secure social media handles
- Develop a social media strategy
These digital marketing tactics will help you grow your online presence and bring organic traffic to your website and social media platforms. Most of these digital marketing tactics require little to no budget, which means they have a high return on investment.
When deciding which digital marketing channels are best for, you’ll want to consider your target audience. For example, if you work with local HVAC companies, print ads may be more suitable than social media or free webinars. This will help you allocate your resources and improve your marketing strategy.
Next, you must gain legal permits and licenses to own a full-time business. These permits and licenses are set in place to protect your business and help you build rapport with your prospective audience.
The permits and licenses may vary depending on what state you live in. If you’re unsure what you need or how to get started here, you may need to research or speak with a tax professional.
Your side hustles up until now may have just been for some extra cash or to boost your savings. But if you’re ready to wave goodbye to your full-time gig and take the best side hustles in 2024 more seriously, you must start separating your business and personal income.
Separating your business and personal income will ensure you don’t spend money that is there for your company. You’ll also want to make sure you pay yourself for the work you do! Set a salary for yourself to ensure you’re also getting paid, just like any other employee would.
Turning your side hustles into a full-time business will require additional financial work. To ensure you can stay afloat financially, you’ll need to:
- Bill clients and collect payments on time
- Ensure you always have a steady cash flow
- Set money aside for operational expenses
- Be careful when taking out loans or borrowing money
- Have a cash reserve of at least three to six months of expenses
As your small business grows, you may want to look into financing solutions to help you scale your business. This additional funding can help you hire employees or improve your small business operations.
Every month, you’ll want to sit down and assess your financial records. You’ll want to keep a breakdown of payments and track your expenses. This will make your tax obligations easier and help you understand your projected income.
When you take the time to track your finances, you’ll improve your financial literacy and better understand what you need to do to grow and scale your business in the future.
The best way to put yourself in the entrepreneur mindset is to surround yourself with like-minded individuals. Attend networking events, connect with people on LinkedIn, and seek mentors. As you grow your network, you’ll grow as a professional. It will also unlock new opportunities for side jobs and help you grow your business in the long run.
It doesn’t matter if you have 5, 10, or 15 years of experience. There will always be something new to learn. The world around us is constantly changing. The rise of AI, software, and other tech tools means you must continue learning about upcoming trends. Sign up for free webinars, online classes, and read books like Anti Agency.
Consider what skills you’ll need to set you apart from other working professionals in your industry. Investing in yourself will ensure you stay ahead of the trends shaping the future of your industry and constantly grow professionally.
Studies suggest that nearly half of the people that became entrepreneurs did it to be their own boss. If you decide to turn the best side hustles of 2024 into a full-time gig so you can have freedom and flexibility, you’ll need to start approaching everything with an entrepreneur mindset.
Start considering how you plan to scale your business and offload some of the work. What do you need to grow your business and improve your income? Do you have the bandwidth to take on more client work?
At the end of every quarter, take a step back and revisit your finances. Consider hiring new employees and outsourcing services. When you check in with yourself, you can redefine your goals based on your success and scale your business to new heights.
The world of side businesses is constantly growing. If you want to continue to expand your skills and grow your business, you’ll need to be open to other side hustles and opportunities.
Here are the best side hustles in 2024:
- Graphic Designer
- Freelance Writer
- Social Media Marketing
- Event Planners
- Content Creator
- Online Reseller
- Email Marketing
There are side hustles that may require certifications and training. However, once you have these skills, you can start taking on new clients and expanding your business to new markets.
The side hustle economy shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. For many, the best side hustles in 2024 are merely a stepping stone to entrepreneurship. The flexibility and freedom to work when and where you want lays the groundwork for future generations and aspirations.