The gig economy is here to stay. Get involved in the gig economy to start earning side hustle income. These are the best gig economy jobs that are scalable and can help you invest or pay down debt faster.
7 Best Gig Economy Jobs That Are Worth Your Time
If you’re looking for a way to make some extra cash, getting a side hustle can help. Whether you’re looking to pay off debt, need help making ends meet, or just want some extra pocket change, gig economy jobs have become commonplace in our society.
In fact, 29% of the American workforce has turned to one of these “gig jobs” as their primary means of making money (in lieu of more traditional 9-to-5 jobs).
Unsurprisingly, not all gig economy jobs are created the same – some pay more than others – and some will require more of an investment when it comes to getting started.
If your schedule is tight, and sitting at a desk for eight hours a day has suddenly lost its appeal, a gig job may be the perfect fit for you.
What is the Gig Economy?
You may have heard the term “gig economy” thrown around and wondered what it means.
Ultimately, any time someone outsources a task to a freelancer or an independent contractor, it’s a gig. Most gigs are short-term and don’t include perks such as employer benefits (health insurance, retirement, etc).
In essence, gig economy jobs help you make cash quickly. Your gig could be anything from tutoring the neighborhood kid in math, to driving for Uber or Lyft in your spare time.
More formally, a gig economy job is a short term, money-making activity in which a single task, or small series of tasks, is completed by an individual, for which their time and effort is reimbursed. It can be broad or specific, and the duration of work can vary.
Many people use gigs to make money on the side of their day jobs. Alternatively, a gig job can have a specific purpose: to help with paying off debt, growing an emergency fund, or as a principle to start investing.
Whatever your reason, finding the right gig economy job can help you in your financial journey.
Related: 15 Online Jobs to Kickstart Your Work from Home Journey
7 High Paying Gig Economy Jobs to Try in 2019
One of the great things about gigs is that they’re typically very flexible. Generally speaking, you won’t have set hours, a boss breathing over your shoulder, and coworkers become a thing of the past.
Better yet, many positions are remote and allow you to pick up and put down your work at a moment’s notice.
Here are some high paying ideas for getting started:
Drive for Uber or Lyft
If you have a car and want to make some extra cash, consider signing up to drive for Uber or Lyft. These ridesharing platforms connect drivers with people who need a ride from one location to another.
The more you drive, the more you earn. During popular times (when there are a lot of ride requests) drivers can earn more as more competitive pricing goes into effect.
Better yet, you can drive as much or as little as you like.
For example, you can pick up a rider on your way to and from work, or drive only on the weekends. Just turn on the app and pick up passengers when you have availability.
Both Uber and Lyft have specific requirements: vehicle inspections, background checks, and a relatively clean driving record (to name a few). Signing up is quick and easy. Some people drive for both companies before making a decision either way.
Pay: Expect to make $14 – $15 per hour (depending on your area) with a defined bonus structure.
Get a Gig on Fiverr
If you want to try your hand at offering freelance services online, check out Fiverr.
This online marketplace is a great place to connect with customers and get gigs. When you first start, each gig you do will pay $5, and gigs are often completed in less than 20 minutes.
While $5 doesn’t seem like much, there are ways to make real money with Fiverr. As you get more customers and positive feedback, you can charge more. In addition, you can charge for add-on services.
One of the keys to making Fiverr work for you is getting steady clientele that will return to you for work again and again.
Here are a few services you can provide on Fiverr:
- Video editing
- Logo design
- Copy editing
- Business card design
- Research services
If you have several different skills, offer them all on Fiverr — you may be surprised which ones are the most popular.
Lastly, ask customers who are happy with your services to give you a good rating — highly rated freelancers frequently get featured by Fiverr on their homepage and category sections.
Pay: $5 per gig starting out but can scale up based on reputation.
Deliver for Instacart
For those not familiar with Instacart, it’s a grocery delivery service that guarantees orders in two hours or less. It started in 2012 and has expanded nationwide, partnering with grocery chains such as Costco, Safeway, Sprouts, and more.
Shoppers using the service log in to their account – either on the app or online – and order groceries they’d like to have delivered. Once the order is placed, a shopper fulfills the order and delivers it to the specified address.
Being a shopper for Instacart can be a flexible way to make money. Keep in mind that you must have access to your own car and pass a background check. You also have to be able to physically lift and carry heavy bags of groceries.
Once you’re hired as a shopper for Instacart, you simply turn on the app and pick up jobs whenever you have time. When someone submits an order, you’ll have the option to claim it, buy the items and either deliver the order to them or get them ready for pick up.
How much you get paid depends on the type of shopping you do – some gigs are paid hourly while others are based on commission.
Pay: $10 – $17 per hour.
Walk a Friend with Rover
One of the best gig economy jobs out there lets you hang out with furry friends and get your steps in. If you love dogs and want to stay local, check out Rover.com. You can use the site to create a profile and get paid to walk dogs near you.
One of the great things about Rover is that you’re in charge of your own mini dog walking business. You set your schedule, decide on your rates, and work whenever you want. Rover takes a 20 percent cut of your earnings for overhead (so keep that in mind when setting your rates).
In addition to dog walking, you can also offer dog boarding, house sitting, doggy daycare, and drop-in visits. Since this is your business, you’re in charge of the exact services you offer.
Pay: $12 – $15 per hour.
Become a Freelance Writer
Looking for a flexible gig that you can do from home? Love writing as a hobby?
Consider becoming a freelance writer.
One of the great things about writing as a side hustle is that there is no set schedule. You can write whenever you have time — before work or after your kids go to bed — it doesn’t matter.
Gig writing jobs are everywhere, you just have to know where to look.
You can also go local and offer your writing services to businesses in your area. Use your skills to write blog posts, articles, copy for websites and brochures, and much more.
Another great place to find writing gigs is Facebook groups targeted toward business owners or bloggers. Business owners need copy for their websites and marketing materials for their blogs.
Just be careful about promoting your services immediately after joining a group as most groups won’t allow this.
Spend time interacting in the group and building rapport with the group owner(s). Over time you may find that they actually send business your way as they begin to learn more about you and your capabilities.
You should also join online groups or forums where other freelance writers hang out. Many writers and editors will share jobs to these types of groups. They can be a goldmine for legitimate writing opportunities since you know the person is already looking to hire a writer.
Getting started doesn’t require any upfront costs but setting up a website or using a portfolio service to show writing examples will help. Writing is very flexible so you can increase or decrease your workload depending on your availability.
Pay: $22 – $25 per hour.
Related: Best Online Jobs for Teenagers
Try Your Hand at Social Media Management
If you’re good at social media, why not turn it into a lucrative side gig? This is one of the gig economy jobs that offers complete flexibility as you can do it from the comfort of your own home.
This includes managing social platforms such as Facebook pages and groups, Pinterest accounts, Instagram accounts, and so on. You can offer to manage all of these platforms for a business owner or niche down to a single one – say Pinterest account management – depending on your skills and interest.
You’ll also be building up the skills that could land you a corporate gig down the road. There are also many different ways to find clients from the get-go (including the online marketplaces Upwork and Fiverr mentioned earlier).
Another way to find higher paying gigs is by joining closed Facebook groups where business owners and bloggers hang out. Many business owners run their own social media channels and would like to outsource them to others.
Connecting with the right people and offering your services can help you land your first few gigs.
Do an excellent job with each of your new clients and ask them if they know anyone else who could use this service.
The key to making this gig lucrative is to continue to increase your rates with each client. Once you find a few steady clients, you can count on a steadier income stream doing something you already enjoy – spending time on social media.
Pay: $18 – $26 per hour.
Get Handy with Home Repairs
If you’re a self-proclaimed fixer-upper, consider becoming a handyman (or handywoman). There are many homeowners who are willing to pay someone else to take care of their “honey-do” list.
This is an easy side gig that doesn’t require any additional schooling or certification. You can do it in your spare time and on weekends when most homeowners are looking for someone to fix things.
All you need to get started is the tools you already use around your own home. Finding clients at first will probably be slow but as word gets out about the work you do, you may find it easier to land more frequent gigs.
One of the best ways to build some momentum is to offer friends and neighbors your services at a reduced rate. Do an excellent job and make sure to let them know that you’re looking for more clients.
People love to share with their family and friends when they find trustworthy, reliable help. Ask them to post on social media or to share with others that you’re willing and available to help with any projects they have around the house.
You can also post about your services in local Facebook groups that allow self-promotion. Make sure you follow the group’s rules when posting.
Another option is to advertise using Craigslist or Angie’s List. The latter is more targeted toward people looking for services such as home repair but it does have a fee.
Nextdoor.com is another great place to promote your services and ask others to recommend you. It’s a website (and app) that connects neighbors with each other and groups them by neighborhoods. Businesses can also create profiles and ask for recommendations from those who have used their services.
Pay: $20 – $26 per hour.
The Bottom Line
There are many different gig economy jobs where you can make money in your spare time. Which one you chose will depend on your availability and resources. If you try a gig that doesn’t work out, don’t despair.
Just pick another one and try it out until you find something that’s a good fit. If you have skills such as writing or graphic design, use them to get work through websites such as Fiverr and Upwork. How much you earn often depends on how much time and effort you’re willing to invest in your newly found side hustle.
Have you ever worked a gig economy job? What was your experience? Share in the comments.
- Best Online Jobs to Work from Home
- Best Freelance Website to Consider
- Why Freelancer Nomads are the Future
Subscribe to the Millionaire Mob early retirement blog newsletter to find the best travel hacking tips, dividend growth investing, passive income ideas and more.
Achieve a financially free lifestyle you’ve always wanted.