Initial Thoughts on Do You Have a Side Hustle, A Second Income Source?
Recently, I read that the most successful people have seven income sources. You read that correctly. Do you have a side hustle, a second income source? Businesses change direction all the time, and your job or project can disappear. Twice I have found myself vulnerable because my anchor client made changes in their business, which didn’t include me.
So, suddenly, most of my income disappeared. But if I am being honest, there were signs, but I didn’t pay close attention to them. We all like to think that we’re not expendable. It makes us feel good about ourselves.
If you’re an employee, would you survive a job loss? If not, what steps are you taking to protect yourself?
For a couple of years now, I’ve heard a lot of talk about side hustles. And it made perfect sense to me. I’ve read several places how side hustles became so lucrative, that they became the main income source. You need a passive income source, so you’re not trading time for dollars.
I am an Amazon affiliate, so when my readers click on a book or other product link on my blog, and make a purchase on Amazon, I make a small commission. For some people that I know, this is their only income source, because they are crushing it on Amazon.
One person makes over $8,000 each month in Amazon commissions. She has worked very hard on her blog, making sure that her blog posts look inviting. Over the Christmas holidays, she earned more than $130,000 in three months – October, November, and December. That’s a lot of money.
UPDATE: First Published in March 2017
Just over a week ago, Amazon changed its commission fee structure to a fixed one. Now the commission you earn is based on product type. It eliminated the ‘more of a product type your customers buy, the more affiliate income you make’. These affiliate marketers, who were crushing it on Amazon, will see their income source go down substantially. Therefore, it’s so important not to have one income source. Amazon gave their affiliates about one week’s notice about the change. Not enough time to do any planning. People have asked me if the change impacted me.
Yes, it did, but not in the way it did for others. I don’t earn a lot of Amazon affiliate income, therefore, I cannot miss what I didn’t have. I took some courses that Pajamas Affiliates offers, and my Amazon affiliate income has increased, but I cannot live on it. Before taking the courses, it took me years to earn $100, now it takes me four months or less. The reality is that it’s difficult to earn a lot of affiliate income on e-books, unless your traffic is going through the roof. Four percent of $.99 is not much.
In the upcoming months, my affiliate income will increase further, as I add the information from the Pajama Affiliate courses to more of my old blog posts (Affiliate link if you want to buy the courses). I am grateful for the Amazon affiliate income I earn, because it’s passive income for me.
Highlights from The Side Hustle Path: Side Hustle Ideas
To learn more about side hustles, I read the book, The Side Hustle Path by Nick Loper, which is the first in a series. It builds a good case for why you need a side hustle. In The Side Hustle Path, Nick Loper says that a side hustle should be something with a built in audience. This means that an audience already exists. Although the book had excellent information and side hustle ideas, I decided not to read the other books in the series.
I love the book because it is filled with many case studies that support the side hustle ideas. However, many of the side hustle ideas mentioned, I am not interested in doing. Many others will be open to trying them. If you are going to do a side hustle, make sure the activity is something you are passionate about, so you will stick with it.
The Side Hustle Path has four sections:
- Section One: The Sharing Economy
- Section Two: Sell a Skill or Service
- Section Three: Teach a Man to Fish
- Section Four: Setup Shop on the World’s Largest Store
Section One: The Sharing Economy
This section includes services like Uber, Airbnb, and Criagslist. Because I’m not interested in offering these services, doesn’t mean my readers wouldn’t appreciate the information. The Side Hustle Path does a good job of explaining what it entails to offer these services as a side hustle.
Section Two: Sell a Skill or Service
You must find a problem to solve, then solve it. People are always looking for answers and they are willing to pay for it.
3 Ways to Make Money Online
- Sell ads
- Sell a product
- Sell a service
Steps to Solve Problems
Step 1: Identify the Problem
- Find a problem that causes pain. Make sure that a market exists for your solution.
Step 2: Re-engineer Your Solution into a Service
- Fix a problem for someone instead of offering a product.
- Check Buzzsumo to find a how-to post related to your topic. This will give you ideas.
- Narrow your niche.
- When you understand what you’re offering, you can create software, courses, apps and so on.
Step 3: Choose One Person to Work With
Who has the same clientele as you? Remember you are looking for a built-in audience. Nick Loper recommends that you visit a website such as Topsy, to find a post that covers the niche you are interested in. Look at the people who commented on the post. Reach out to these people, mentioning the article. This is a quick and easy way to find people to work with.
Step 4: Create a Proposal
Before you start to pitch your products and services, start a conversation first. Get to know the client, so you can fill their needs.
Step 5: Give Away Your Must Have Experience Free First
Give away first before you ask for a payment. Put clients on a retainer. Where there is chaos there is cash flow.“You don’t have a money problem; you have an idea problem.”Click To Tweet
Section Three: Teach a Man to Fish
We often take our knowledge for granted, thinking others already know the information. Even if they do, our spin is different from others. There are lots of platforms like Udemy, Skillshare, and Teachable, that allow you to teach to the masses. Teaching the masses what you know is a side hustle idea that will yield passive income. You create the course once, then people keep on buying it.
Section Four: Setup Shop on the World’s Largest Store
A big business today is Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), where you sell your products through Amazon. The Side Hustle Path explains what FBA is, and how to use it. If you are interested, there are lots of courses that you can take to learn about FBA.
The Side Hustle Path Series of Books
The Side Hustle Path: 10 Proven Ways to Make Money Outside of Your Day Job (Volume 1)The Side Hustle Path Volume 2: 10 Proven Ways to Make Money Outside of Your DayThe Side Hustle Path Volume 4: 10 Proven Ways to Make Money Outside of Your Day JobThe Side Hustle Path Volume 3: 10 Proven Ways to Make Money Outside of Your Day Job
Avil Beckford’s Side Hustle Passive Income
I have one e-book that is being edited, and another I have written 50 percent. I will sell them on Amazon. I have created some short reads that I am selling on my website, using PayPal to accept payment. I thought about some of the blog posts that I wrote, and created some handy guides to help readers. I am focusing on side hustles that yield passive income instead of trading time for dollars.
Here are the guides I created in The Invisible Mentor Shop. If you think they would be useful to you, go ahead and buy them.
Avil’s T-Shirt Shop on SunFrog
I am an affiliate for t-shirt designers on Sunfrog. What I like about Sunfrog, is that you can find tee shirts from virtually any genres. Here are few of the designs that I chose.
Book Lover Gifts from Sunfrog
Avil’s Mugs on Gear Bubble
Final Thoughts on Do You Have a Side Hustle, A Second Income Source?
I want the very best for you. Set aside an hour, go through your computer hard drive, to find content that you can transform into digital products for sale. Read The Side Hustle Path for ideas on which side hustles to pursue. There are many options, and one may be suitable for you. The best thing is that the first book in the series is free for download.