All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.Walt disney
Hello Summer 2019! It’s safe to say that we’ve all been waiting for you. For most students, Summer is the only time of year that isn’t filled with studying, tests, and public education in general. Even if you’re not in school anymore, it’s still the prime season to get your creative juices flowing and a new business on the rise. I mean who doesn’t want a quick buck, and a bomb story on how you made the most out of your season.
We live in a new era, where young people don’t have to take up boring, service jobs anymore to save up and make ends meet. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with being a waitress, store associate, or cashier, but there are more opportunities to think outside the box and cash in big than ever before. You likely just need a push in the right direction.
I saw this quote on Instagram a couple of days ago that I really liked. “Find three hobbies you love: One to make you money, one to keep you in shape, and one to be creative.” That’s a really great mindset to get you thinking about work you’ll actually enjoy. But why not figure out a way to make a hobby double in both categories? i.e be creative and make you money. Or keep you in shape and make you money? Now, I’m not saying that every thing on this list is going to be some sort of hobby translated into a money-making skill, but a good portion will be based off of actions you can actually enjoy. And isn’t that what working is really about?
Opening an Etsy Shop
If you enjoy crafting, and have handmade items you’re willing to sell, then Etsy is the place for you. Differing from traditional ecommerce platforms like Amazon or Ebay, Etsy only allows you to sell handmade or vintage items, and craft supplies. Etsy is relatively competitive so you’ll definitely need to put in some advertising work both in person and on social media. The platform charges 20 cents per listing so be sure to keep that in mind.
You can read my full review on my first month selling on Etsy here. The platform can be a whirlwind for newbies so I shared the biggest things I learned, my mistakes, and what I now do differently.
Thrift Store Shopping and re-selling
This can sound a bit scary but door-to-door selling can still be a practical method to make money. It’s perfect for selling smaller, tangible, cheaper items that will at least have some value to the viewer. Food can always be at least a relatively reliable product to sell since a lot of people order delivery anyway.
My sister and I have already started a mini door-to-door hustle this Summer where we’ve made $55.00. The best way to get receptive, willing buyers is to donate a portion of profits to a charity. We sell homemade nut butters and Tastykake packaged snacks, and always tell buyers that we’re also raising money for the National Breast Cancer Research Foundation. This is a cause that we actually really care about, so we suggest finding one supporting a cause dear to you.
Joining a freelancer platform
For those of you who don’t know what a freelancer is, it is a term commonly used for a person who is self-employed and not necessarily committed to a particular employer long-term. Freelance workers are on the rise due to the flexible schedules, work specialized for their niche, and extra freedom in assignments they choose to undertake.
Their are tons of platforms online where you can offer your services like Upwork.com, freelancer.com, fiverr.com, peopleperhour.com, and Craigslist. Most platforms take a percentage of the profit you make through clients, so be mindful of that. You can offer anything from blog writing to virtual assisting to data entry to site development to graphic design. Generally all work should be remote so you’ll be able to complete assignments straight from the comfort of your own home.
Graphic Design for others
Even if you don’t have the Adobe Creative Cloud, or other paid design softwares, you can still design graphics using free mobile apps. There’s a good chance you already use, and maybe even create your own promotional images on social media platforms, so you already know the gist of designing info-graphics and attractive, dimension-optimized photos. There’s likely someone out there willing to pay for a designer to get their graphics done for them.
Try out Picsart or Canva for free design platforms with lots of features. You can also join a freelancer website to discover clients directly requesting this kind of service, or direct message people who could potentially be interested.
If cosmetology is one of your skills, ladies will pay a pretty penny to get a style done. Especially if you’re charging a (reasonably) lower price than professionals. For curly haired women, particularly of the African-American community, many will pay anywhere from 50 to 250 dollars to have a braided style done for them. You don’t even need to have a salon or workplace. You can invite them to your home or offer to go to theirs.
Content writing for others
This goes back to the freelancing suggestion, but content writing is a bit more specific. There are plenty of clients offering pay for skilled entry-level writers to complete blog posts, other articles, research, and social media captions.
Tutoring Online or In-Person
This doesn’t even have to be for academic subjects. You can offer video or meet-up sessions to teach someone how to do anything from coding to WordPress to Adobe cloud utilization. There’s always the traditional school courses as well that students need help on. Tutors have been known to make anything from $21.00 to $85.00 per hour. You can find clients on freelancing platforms or on actual tutoring sites. Care.com can also help with offering a range of services.
Writing a book
Any kind. You can go digital or opt the traditional printed. Nonfiction on a subject you’re educated in and would like to share your knowledge on will likely be the most ideal, but fiction novels can be successful as well. Research a genre, and be willing to put in some time and work.
Social Media Market an e-commerce site
You can definitely set up a website to sell your items or services on, but if it’s not an actual selling platform, you’ll probably have a challenging time actually reaching any customers. You can use Wix, Weebly, Squarespace, or WordPress to sell on but you’ll definitely need to build an online presence marketing your site and what you offer. Advertise on popular platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.
Using the app NextDoor to find neighborhood work
Just this past Sunday, I saw a post on NextDoor where a neighbor two streets over requested for someone to tidy up her lawn. She asked for a potential teenager on Summer Break looking to make an easy dollar, so of course I responded. She offered $10.00/hr so I hopped on my bike, along with my sister, and made my over to her house. I ended up taking 2 hours and made a quick 20 dollars.
A typical suburban neighborhood has a pretty good portion of homeowners active on the application due to it’s up-to-date notifications and local news. The app focuses on your neighborhood, but includes a good amount of nearby residencies as well; so you’ll just need to keep your eye open for any neighbors making job requests.
Selling on secondhand applications like Letgo or Offerup
Back in December, my sister and I sold our old Barbie Doll Dream House on Offerup for a pretty $70.00. Think twice before throwing away any old objects and be sure to access quality for overall value. Selling at a low price and offering shipping along with pick-up is the prime formula for getting business within this form of ecommerce.
Selling on a clothing platform like Mercari, Poshmark, or Depop
The beauty of these applications for those who don’t particularly define themselves as crafty, is that all you have to do is resell. Communities on different platforms usually at least minorly differ in the main style of clothing sold, so figure out how your clothing measures up. Reselling old clothing is the fool-proof method of “securing the bag,” but thrift shopping and possibly even upcycling purchased clothing can rack in surprising profit.
Don’t expect reselling to be a cakewalk though. You’ll need to take quality, bright photos and effectively advertise your shop within multiple platforms to really start making sales.
If doing nails is your strong suit, then consider selling your skills. Show potential buyers the kinds of designs you can do, and research competing prices for how much you should price your services for. Learning how to do acrylic nails will likely be your real money-maker in this industry.
Dog walking (Wag and Rover.com for 18+)
Making YouTube Videos
Setting up a tutorial sharing class
Multiple platforms allow knowledgeable individuals to set up virtual classes to teach paying viewers. Think of a subject you’re particularly skilled in and consider selling a course on Skillshare, Udemy, or Lynda.com.
Uber or Lyft ( or set up your own driving service)
Deliver food through Postmates or Doordash
If you have clear camera, and photo taking skills, then you can take photos for clients. Alot of bloggers and social media gurus need HD, attractive images and are willing to pay a nice amount for a stash. You can also sell your photography on websites like Shutterstock or iStockPhoto for a more indirect approach to selling.
Multiple clients request video edits on freelancing websites. Anyone whose ever edited a YouTube video before can know how strenuous of a task it can be. You have to make relevant, funny, relatable, and quick. You also need a a lot of space on whatever device you’re editing on. With those hardships combined, you’ll have clients jumping at your offer of professionally editing their recorded videos.
Having experience with Adobe Premiere or Adobe After Effects will be ideal for this kind of position. iMovie can be great as well, or you can try other applications like Vivavideo, LumaFusion, or Kinemaster Pro.