14 Creative Ways of Making Money On the Side

Making money in addition to a regular income can have a big impact on your finances. An extra $500 per month could go a long way in paying down debt or raising your investment. Diversifying your income streams is important, especially as wage remain stagnant. You decide how you want to produce the income. Either you ‘do something’ to generate the income- this is active income such as providing a service; or the income is generated without you having to ‘do anything,’ – this is passive income such as hosting an Airbnb. Just make sure you do not place all your eggs in one basket.

Creating multiple streams of income does not mean get a second job to supplement your current income. A second job does not provide you with the flexibility and freedom to increase your income. In fact, it can hurt you when you think about it. You are trading time for money and in the long run, you lose. Instead, create something that will allow you to give yourself a pay raise when you need and want it. 

When evaluating and researching ways to produce income, take the following into consideration:

  • Investment — should require minimal investment.
  • Sustainable — ultimately, something that generates income without you.
  • Scalable — produces substantial amounts of income
  • Flexibility — you call the shots. 

Here’s what an extra $500 per month could look like: 

Savings account: If you deposited $500 each month for one year with an interest rate of 4.00%, compounded annually, and an initial starting balance of $500, your yield will be $6,629.22. 

Investment account: Now transfer the amount above from your savings into a 5- year CD with an interest rate of 2%, compounded annually, for five years, your yield will be $7,319.99.

Financial freedom: Extra income of $500 per month could cover car payments, auto insurance, help pay down credit card debt, or cover some or even all of a mortgage payment. Before saving, research rates, get your kids involved, and have fun with it. 

Small incremental savings can ultimately go a long way. Below are steadfast ideas guaranteed to help you generate multiple streams of income this year.

14 Ways of Making Money on the Side 

Sell an E-book

If publishing a book the traditional ways is a long shot, then consider an e-book. An e-book is simple; many people publish them for free, but many sell them as well on Amazon.

Affiliate Marketing

If you have a blog or other type of site, you can build affiliate links to different services on the website. Many people use Amazon as an affiliate partner. For example, if you are a beauty blogger writing about different products, you can set up Amazon affiliate links on your blog so that whenever someone buys the product you mention on Amazon, you receive a percentage of the sale. Amazon is not the only affiliate partner out there. Here is good, in-depth information on affiliate marketing

Write a Book

A well-written book will undoubtedly rake in some profits for you. Although the process of getting it published is sometimes tedious, it is not entirely impossible. Contrary to what many believe, self-publishing can be easy, fun, invigorating, and life changing.

Begin a Micro-Business

Many of the above examples are also small businesses. However, you can start a more traditional kind of business–one that sells a service or product. Consider the one thing you’re good at or the one thing you are constantly complimented on. Before starting, make sure you have all the legal documents in alignment.

Teach a Class

If you have excellent skills or knowledge, then consider teaching at a university; make a series of seminars or make your own classes at your business.

Offer Consulting or Coaching

Instead of teaching a full class, you can coach clients one-on-one.

Start a Blog

It may take a while for a blog to earn any money, as with any business, but with consistency and commitment, it will eventually pay off.

Develop a Product

A typical way of making money is to transform a service into a product. For example, as a freelancer, you offer a service once and earn money once. However, if you can change your service into a product, you can put it up for sale once and get paid lots of times.

Have Multiple Clients

If you depend on one main client only, slowly begin branching out to fresh customers. Build your client list through list building.

Launch a Magazine

You can select a topic, develop content, transform it into a perfect magazine and sell it for a profit.

Offer Expert Advice 

The technique here charges for calls from people who want guidance in the topic/field you are knowledgeable in.

Create a Membership Website 

If you can make valuable content, there will almost forever be people willing to pay a monthly fee for membership.


Stocks, bonds, 401(k)s, annuities, etc., are great ways to earn passive income. Place proceeds in a high-interest savings account or a high-interest checking account to establish your emergency fund account.

Purchase Real Estate

Real estate is a good way to earn extra income. Real estate investing includes fixing and flipping houses, which requires capital in the form of cash and credit. Speak with seasoned investors and realtors to find out if this passive income strategy is right for you.

Producing additional income is the foundation to building wealth. While earning extra income does take work, the ROI can be enormous and pay off for years to come. Now’s the time to create your plan for building your financial legacy for you and your family.  

-Editor’s Note: This article was updated since its original publish date of March 14, 2017.