I just love starting side hustles you can do from home! This is why, throughout the years, I’ve tried a ton of side hustles while being a busy mom. With some of these, I’ve had massive successes while others I’ve decided that I just don’t want to continue anymore. The reason I stopped working on some of these side hustles was not that I didn’t make money, but because I realized that I wouldn’t want to continue doing them for the long run and a big part of choosing what I want to do is what feels right to me, what I can be creative in and that I can fulfil my potential. If you are a busy working mom, check out my best side hustle ideas for working moms here.
I thought I would share with you my experience, my results and what I’ve learned from working on each of these side hustles so it might help you to decide which of them is right for you.
I will also rate each of them on a scale of 1-10 and again this is my own personal experience and thoughts, and it might be different for you depending on what you like doing the most.
Side Hustles You Can Do from Home
My First Side Hustle – Making Birthday Cakes
So the first side hustle I started was making and selling fondant-decorated birthday cakes. It started as a hobby as I wanted to make beautiful cakes for my kids for their birthday parties so I went to this workshop and got very excited. When I saw I am really enjoying it, and that I am very good at it, I started going to more and more workshops and even got my pastry chef certificate.
I started doing marketing for my cakes side hustle and I was selling cakes mostly to my kids’ friends’ parents. I also ran fondant workshops for kids’ birthday parties on the weekends and earned more money.
Because at that time I had too many things going on, I was going to university and doing my MBA while taking care of my small kids, I didn’t have a lot of time to invest in the business and build it right.
However, it was fun and I was so excited to make some money as a freelancer! This was my first freelance gig and I remember I was very proud of myself.
In the end, I decided not to continue with this business because I was physically exhausted from standing long hours every day baking and decorating and designing all the elements. I was doing everything myself – making the cakes from start to finish, cleaning up the mess after that, going to buy supplies and I was even doing the deliveries!
What I’ve learned looking back?
You can most definitely make a full income out of this business because moms will continue ordering beautiful cakes for their kids instead of putting so much effort into doing it themselves. One thing though, if you really want to grow this thing without being physically exhausted, you would need to take some help. You can have someone else bake the cakes for you and you will do the decorating or even hire someone to do the easy decorating tasks and you will just do the more complicated stuff at the end. Well, at that time I wasn’t thinking about it as a businesswoman so it was hard for me to scale this thing.
You’ll hardly need to do a lot of marketing yourself because your product speaks for itself, and beautiful cakes can go viral very quickly. Also, moms that bought your cakes, will happily recommend you in all the Facebook groups that they are part of so they will do a lot of the marketing for you. If you like baking and you are good at it, this can absolutely be one of the side hustles you can do from home.
My Rating – 5 (because you would need to put the hours and work for every single cake you sell, so it’s more difficult to scale than having an online business).
My Second Side Hustle You Can Do From Home – Content Writer
This was my second side hustle that started by accident when I completed my degree in marketing and tried to look for a job that would allow me to come home by 4 pm to pick up the kids from daycare and still make a decent salary.
After months of searching, I realized that there is no such thing! Either the salary sucked or the job ad was asking for long hours at the office with a “stressful environment”. I got so tired of ads like “we are a big family’ and you get to have perks like gym membership and drinks after work. All I was thinking was, I already have a family and I don’t want any drinks or a gym membership, I want to go home!
At one point, my sister recommended me to a friend of hers that was looking for a content writer, so I grabbed it immediately and started working. I was a complete beginner and it took me some time to learn how to write content for the web, how to make content that would rank in Google and basic SEO (search engine optimisation).
I wasn’t making a lot from that gig (around $20 for 500 words) but I was a beginner, and I learned a lot from this and the work kept coming in every day just from this one customer so I didn’t need to do any marketing.
Again, when my first check arrived by mail, I was extremely proud of myself and was very happy to be able to work from home and take the kids to daycare and pick them up on time and could also watch over them when they were sick and be flexible with my time. This turned out to be one of the best side hustles you can do from home with no limitations on your working hours and 100% flexibility. Then one day, after a few months that I was writing content, this customer went through bankruptcy and couldn’t send me any more work. One day and it was all gone.
I was devastated at first but looking back this is what forced me to go out there with my new experience and start making much more money. I started doing marketing for myself (I already had a lot of content examples I made so there was no problem showing my experience), I’ve raised my prices and started also doing copywriting for landing pages. However, I knew it was just one pillar of the business I wanted to build so I decided to continue writing content, but I would also like to add more skills to my skill set and offer more services to my customers.
My rating – 8 (if you like writing there is a huge potential to make a lot of money doing that. Today, you can charge at least $100 for high-quality content and if you also invest the time to learn copywriting, you can easily charge $500 or even $1000 to write a landing page).
My Third Side Hustle You Can Do From Home – SEO and Website Building
This was my first ‘real’ business. While I was writing all types of content for the web and optimised it to rank on Google, I got more and more interested in SEO so I signed up for a few-month course and from there I mostly made my money from doing SEO and keyword research for customers.
I invested a lot of time in marketing, built my own website, posted a lot on social media, created YouTube videos, run webinars and built my email list.
At this point, I made a full-time income out of it and I had a lot of customers.
Then I decided to take a partner to build websites for my customers. This was a turning point in the business because we were able to make much more money together but the business became much more complicated and there were a lot of customers to deal with, too many different projects to work on and a lot more stress.
After a few years, we decided to stop building websites and ended the partnership.
What I’ve learned looking back
A partnership is not for everyone. I’ve learned that I would much rather make all the important decisions and the vision of the business myself. If you know what’s important to you and where you want to go, just do what’s best for you, even if financially you can make much more money or progress much faster with a partner.
If your side hustle involves managing customers – you will have to establish a strategy around how you are going to serve them and have some rules that you can follow. Not all customers will respect your time or act in a respectful way. In the beginning, I worked with everyone, I wanted to grow my portfolio and my experience and make money. But then I got to the point where I’ve realised that it’s not worth it. People that bring negativity to your business and complain constantly, are not worth the money or your time. I gladly started to fire the negative customers and even gave them all their money back, with a smile!
You can most definitely make a lot of money doing SEO or building websites for customers. A website can be a one time project that you can charge a few thousand dollars for.
An SEO contract could be a steady monthly income which is great and predictable. I started with 6 months contract and when I’d gained more experience, I only offered yearly contracts. When a customer is happy with your work, they can stay with you for years. One of my customers is working with me for 7 years now and I really enjoy this side hustle.
My rating – 7 (you can make a lot of money doing SEO or building websites but the downside of this type of business is that there is a lot of customers management involved and if you don’t like dealing with customers all day long, then this might not be one of the best side hustles you can do from home).
My Kindle Publishing side hustle
This is a great side hustle you can do from home. A few years ago I’ve signed up for a course about Kindle Publishing (how to publish eBooks on Amazon Kindle). The course was designed to teach you how to write simple non-fiction books, however, when I completed it I decided that I actually want to write a children’s book. So, I started writing, then hired an editor to proofread and make some changes and made the images myself (bought illustrations from a stock photo website and made some changes to it). It didn’t take me more than 2 months to complete it and publish it on Amazon.
After I’ve published it, there were some sales but I felt that the most important thing, that would make this book much more successful is making professional illustrations. So I started working with an illustrator and it took me a few months until everything was exactly how I wanted it to look.
A few days after I’ve republished it, Amazon took my book down because of formatting issues. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the time to fix these issues and publish it again so at the moment it still sits on my computer waiting, but I do intend to fix it and have it republished in the next few months.
What I’ve learned
- Illustrations are the most important thing in a children’s book. If you are going to write a children’s book, take a good illustrator that will produce high-quality illustrations, it’s worth every dollar.
- Taking a long break every time that I encountered a challenge, like Amazon taking down my eBook, made it so hard to come back to it and fit it into my schedule. Yes, I lost the momentum and now it seems like it’s so hard to start working on it again, but I will and I will report on it on this blog!
- I know some people that are making a few thousand dollars a month easily from Kindle Publishing so this is absolutely achievable but if you want it to work for you, you will have to invest the time and do those 2 things –
- publish a lot of quality books (at least 10 or more)
- Work on marketing them all the time (don’t think that Amazon will do the marketing for you because they won’t).
My rating – 8 (you would need to invest the time to write a lot of books but this is scalable and when you market these books or hire someone to do the marketing for you, then you can grow this business automatically and enjoy yourself doing that because writing books is so much fun and one of the most creative side hustles you can do from home!)
One On One Coaching
This is one of the most profitable side hustles you can do from home. For about 5 years, while I was building and doing a lot of marketing for my SEO business, I also did 1X1 coaching for small business owners to coach them on how to rank their website on Google and how to do social media marketing for their business.
For my first coaching session, I charged $70 an hour, then started raising my prices to $100 an hour, $200 an hour and for the last 2 years before I stopped doing coaching altogether, I was charging $500 for 2 hours coaching and I’ve made really good money out of it.
However, I decided that I didn’t want to continue doing that for the long run again because it involved dealing and managing all these clients on a daily basis and also, I really wanted to build a business that I can automate and scale over time, instead of investing all my time 1X1 with clients.
What I’ve learned
If this is something you want to do, if you love coaching and you have a skill that you can teach and people would like to learn from you, then you can absolutely make a lot of money doing that. Even if you would do just a 2 hours coaching session a day, as I did, and charge $500 for it then this is a pretty good income for half a day of work. Of course, it will take time to establish your brand and do the marketing for yourself however, you can be flexible with your time and even have another day job while you are working on growing this business.
My rating is – 8 (great potential as a side hustle to make a lot of money and your income can be pretty much predictable. However, you would need to invest the time in marketing and growing your brand).
My favorite side hustle – Blogging & Affiliate Marketing
One of the best side hustles you can do from home is blogging and affiliate marketing. Saved my favourite side hustle for last!:)
Affiliate marketing is basically making a commission as an affiliate when you recommend a product, and someone buys this product through your affiliate link.
This is my favourite one because all you need to do to be successful is to blog about your experience. Blogging is one of my favorite things! And throughout the years, I’ve gained a lot of experience doing that and I am more than happy to invest more time in learning how to become a better blogger. Last year I completed By Sophia Lee’s Blogging course and wrote an in-depth review, check out the post – Perfecting Blogging Course Review to learn more.
Another skill that is required to be successful in this business (which I love), is social media marketing.
When you love doing something, you will want to learn more about it and upskill yourself as time goes by, and I’ve found it to be the best way to achieve success, do something you love and you’ll continue to love for the long run.
I did affiliate marketing when I was creating content regularly for my SEO blog, so affiliate marketing was not my focus at all, my focus was my marketing business. Once in a while, I could recommend a product I was using as part of a tutorial or something like that. However, it wasn’t part of something structured and I didn’t make any plans to grow it. So I did make some money out of it ($100 or a few hundred dollars a month), but that was it.
What I’ve learned
If you put effort and learn about it more, you can make a lot of money in commissions and there is a lot of potential to make money doing affiliate marketing. This is one of the best side hustles you can do from home if you like creating content.
I’ve learned that if you want to be successful doing affiliate marketing, then you will have to treat that as your business and create the right plan and choose the right products to promote.
Also, a significant factor in this business would be growing your email list. Having targeted subscribers that would want to read your content and follow you is very important to be successful in this business.
My rating – 9 (it takes time to grow this business to a 4 or 5-figure income, but it is very much scalable and will not take a lot of your time on a weekly basis).
As you could see, throughout the years I’ve tried and experimented with a lot of side hustles (all of these side hustles you can do from home in your own time), some of them turned into full time and some of them made me realize what I don’t want to do in the long run.
However, the important thing is that through this journey I’ve upskilled myself and put a lot into my personal development so today I am able to make progress faster and be more aware of some of the things that hold me back in the past.
Today, I have my day job and I also have a few side hustles that I invest my time in, so that’s a lot to take on, but I do enjoy every minute of it and I am excited to see where it will take me.
This post may contain affiliate links, which means I’ll receive a commission if you purchase through one of my links at no extra cost to you!