The internet has made it possible to launch a business from home, in a day, and with very little to no startup costs. This has given so many people the opportunity to start a side-hustle that they were able to work on when they had the time.
Some carve out time in the early morning to work on their online business before they start their real job, and others fit it in during the late evening hours. Others use every spare waking minute they have to build their side-hustle online.
Many even find so much success that they are able to turn it into a full-time gig, giving them much more financial and personal-time freedom than they previously had. Here are some reasons why now is the perfect time to start a side-hustle online.
Minimal startup costs required.
Years ago if you wanted to start a business you had to have a lot of money saved up or a large business loan from a local bank. There were so many costs involved, which made it more difficult as well as more risky.
Now you don’t need a physical location. “You don’t need to take on monthly office rent,” says Loren Taylor of Soothing Company. “You can do everything online and sell a product or service directly, or create an online asset, like a blog, that generates revenue a variety of ways.”
This is also why a lot of new businesses fail now. With a very low barrier of entry now a lot of unqualified people are chasing the dream, but they quickly learn they aren’t cut out for it. This doesn’t make succeeding easier — only getting started.
Plenty of e-commerce platforms to pick from.
If you want to start selling online and on your own store, then there are several platforms that are ready out of the box, which allow you to upload products and inventory, add images and write descriptions and connect a merchant account to start generating money and sales right away.
“If you wanted to start an online store years ago you would have had to hire a web development company and spend $10,000 on a custom design and development,” says Jeannie Hill, a Google voice search expert and the founder of Hill Web Marketing. “Now you can use a platform like Shopify and be set up and live in less than an hour.”
That isn’t an exaggeration either. You can sign up for a free Shopify trial account and be selling in an hour.
Social media gives you unlimited reach potential.
Facebook and Instagram are the two largest social media platform, with hundreds of millions of users. Instagram is about a billion and Facebook is several billion. The entire world is on these platforms, which means through them you can put your product or service directly in front of any audience you want.
There truly isn’t a limit. “Even if your marketing and advertising budget is small in the beginning you can take advantage of organic social media to get some traction,” says Oliver James of Perth Web Design. “Once your idea is validated you can use paid ads to really amplify your reach.”
Drop shipping removes a lot of hassles.
“If you had an idea for a product years ago you would need to find a manufacturer, place a large order, store the inventory in a warehouse and then fulfill every order,” says Irene McConnell of Arielle Executive. “That was a huge commitment in both time and money, before you even would know if the product would be a success or failure.”
Now, drop shipping removes a lot of the risk. You can find a manufacturer that will fulfill your orders and handle everything. No inventory to buy. No order fulfillment. You just need to drive sales.
This is a great way to test an idea without having to risk a pile of money. There are still hurdles, like finding a partner that will ship fast and has a quality product. But once you lock that down it can be very profitable. You can even launch a blog, in the weight loss niche, for example, and find several fitness products and even supplements to sell via the website using a drop shipping business model.
Unlimited scaling potential.
Once you determine that you have a winning product or service you can scale to the moon. There literally isn’t a limit on how big you can grow a side-hustle. Social media advertising was mentioned earlier and that is the easiest way to scale a winner.
“There are companies that start with almost no money but quickly discover that they have a winning product,” says Chris Moberg, whose company Slumber Search identifies the best mattress for side sleepers, among other categories. “If they are using a drop shipping model they aren’t sinking money into product, so they can push all of their revenue back into ads.”
Many new brands use Facebook ads and scale to $50,000 to $100,000 a day in ad spend, making millions of dollars in profit a year.
The business model can be duplicated.
“Once you figure out how to build a successful online business you learn that you can take what you learned and apply it to a different industry or a different product,” offers Pat Skinner of AnswerFirst Communications. “Many of the top online entrepreneurs have started several different ventures and people assume they keep getting lucky.”
Luck has nothing to do with it. They develop a winning formula and simply duplicate it across multiple opportunities. The biggest hurdle most face is just taking the leap to get started. You never know what you can accomplish until you try.