Tuesday, September 22, 2020
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THE RISE OF THE SIDE HUSTLE

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IT’S ALL ABOUT FINDING AND EXPLOITING VALUABLE SKILLS

In the age of quarantine, many have found themselves picking up new hobbies or reviving old ones. Maybe deep down you’ve even thought that your hobby has money- making opportunities. With unemployment rates at record numbers and rising, people are looking for new ways to earn income.

The art of the “side hustle” has gained popularity for years now. With an increasing gap in wage and standard of living, many have had to adapt in order to fill financial holes. The share of American adults who live in middle-income households has decreased from 61% in 1971 to 51% in 2019 (Pew Research). A side hustle is considered  any type of employment undertaken in addition to one’s full-time job. Countless inspiring entrepreneurs are looking to start the next big tech, clothing, beauty, or other niche company — It’s all about finding and exploiting valuable skills. For many side hustlers it is oftentimes a passion or hobby that has turned out to be a marketable product.

MANY HAVE SET UP SHOP FROM THEIR LAPTOPS, ORGANIZING APPOINTMENTS AND SELLING STRAIGHT FROM THEIR COMPUTER

With the introduction of companies like Uber and Lyft after the 2008 financial crisis, working class people were looking for ways to earn an extra cash stream. Different from contract or freelance work, side hustles have become a way for millennials to stop living paycheck to paycheck. A lot of these side hustles are a way to channel creativity and pursue a dream that is not plausible at the beginning of one’s career.

A GOOD PORTION OF AMERICANS AID THEIR INCOME BY DOING WORK ON THE SIDE VIA THIS BANKRATE GRAPH

With this large spike in unemployment and a lot of free time on our hands, side hustles could gain even more popularity. Platforms like Instagram and Etsy allow large customer reach and cheap marketing investment. Mobile economies perpetuate the ability to sell anytime, anywhere, to anyone.

According to a study by Bankrate, more than half of U.S. millennials are running a side hustle. Some of the more popular job titles include home repair/landscaping, babysitting, and selling/reselling goods online. The average monthly earning for millennials with a side hustle is $580.

ETSY HAS BECOME A HUB FOR ARTISTS AND MERCHANTS TO DIRECTLY ACCESS AND SELL TO CONSUMERS

HANDMADE JEWELRY COMPANIES ARE POPULAR ON SITES SUCH AS ETSY

Where this gig economy could guide us through a global pandemic is unknown. People may very well look at employment differently after facing massive lay-offs and furloughs. Scarce job security could lead to a flood of handmade jewelry businesses and the takeover of eager handymen. As we saw our economy shut down and retreated to the safety of our homes this temporary income has been a comfort to many. However, we know that in times of crisis it is those that adapt to change and see it as an opportunity who thrive.