Getting Your First Side Gig

need to earn money on the sideMost people do not become wealthy overnight from their side gig. As a matter of fact, most people don’t make any money at all!

The reason for this is fairly straight forward. They are not willing to put in the time and hard work that are necessary before even a little success becomes possible.

In the following series of articles I will show you a number of ways that it is possible for you to earn anything from a few extra dollars for coffee to paying for your family’s vacation and more.

Will You Achieve Success or Failure Earning Money on the Side?

The difference between success and failure usually lies in the amount of preparation and work a person is willing to do. Preparation can lead to success, but make sure that you are preparing for the right path.

The hardest part about earning money on the side, is getting that first gig. Before you even start looking, you should have a good idea of what you can offer to potential buyers.

What Can I Do to Make Money From My First Gig?

Although some people are very versatile and can handle almost any kind of job thrown their way, most of us are a little more restricted in our abilities. I know that I’ll never take a gig that requires me to sing, dance or create art. Those just aren’t my strong suit.

What’s your strong suit or area of expertise? Can you write it down, clearly in one or two short sentences? What type of digital work can you do?

Can you keyboard? Can you organize? Can you write or edit technical documents? Can you do bookkeeping? Can you sing, dance or create art? Are you a whiz at slide creation and design? What skills have you learned for your day job? Just what exactly do you bring to the table?

What Skills Can You Use to Get That First Gig?

I would suggest that you take pencil in hand at this point, and write down all of the skills you believe that you possess. Once you have done that, make a similar list of all the types of work that you can do with these skills.

Don’t worry if your list seems fairly short. Sometimes specialization can be lead to a richer reward. As we go along in this series of article, I am sure that you will discover even more ways that you can use your current skills.
As my grandfather said, “Before you start climbing the ladder to success, make sure that the ladder is leaning against the right wall.”

In other words, your hard work must be directed correctly if you are to succeed. You only have so much time each day. Use it wisely.

Where Do I Find My First Gig?

A wise man once said, “If you know what it is that you are looking for, then you are more likely to find it.” Knowing the type of situation you are seeking will guide you as to where to look for suitable opportunities. For more on the forums, boards and websites that specialize in different areas of opportunity see my post Gig Sources.

Where’s the Money in the First Gig?

How much can I earn? Some folks earn $100 an hour and more, but that won’t be you unless you have a rare, in-demand skill. Most gigs are piece work and so an hourly average is hard to calculate, but expect to earn between $5 and $50 per hour billed. You should expect to be paid immediately upon completion of the task. A good site to begin with is or similar sites.

A Caution for You

A side note: Do not ever pay to for the opportunity to get a side gig. Sites that want you to pay a “fee” to belong before you can access their gig listings are usually a scam. Most reputable sites will collect a fee from the money you earn, and not before.


Please don’t interpret any of this post as some sort of promise or implication of your future earnings. The average person rarely gets any results at all. Kind of like how the average person who buys home exercise equipment rarely ends up looking like the person in the commercials. I don’t know why that is, but I think it’s safe to say it’s true across the board.

Here’s the bottom: THIS STUFF IS ALL HARD. And it takes WORK and RISK. On top of that, almost nothing ever works right the first time. At least not for me, anyway. You’ve got to stick with it. Think about it. If business was easy, everybody would be rich. So if you’re looking for a “magic pill” or an “easy button” that’ll make you money, you probably want to skip this post. Better you know now than be disappointed later.

Comment below and tell me what you think that you can do to earn money on the side.

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