12 Common Hobbies That Make Money
Everyone has a hobby or two that they’re passionate about, but not everyone chooses to monetize their interests. Think about it though: it’s a lot easier to make the most of an existing skill than to learn a new one to make extra cash. In fact, hobbies that make you money aren’t that uncommon!
Many of us forget that others don’t share the same knowledge or experience, and we write off our own talents. But there are plenty of people out there who are eager to learn from someone more experienced. If you connect with the right people, making money from your hobbies can be more straightforward than you think.
In this blog post, we’ll cover 12 common hobbies and the various ways you can turn them into a side hustle. Each hobby includes examples and platform suggestions to help you get started earning.
Playing video games is a great way to blow off steam and have some fun, which is why a lot of people like it. In 2015, there were almost 2 billion people who play games, and Statista predicts that number will rise to 3 billion by 2023.
With so many gamers in the world, many are interested in following other players to learn how to improve. This presents an opportunity for gamers to stream on YouTube or Twitch and gain loyal followers. You can earn money from your streams through payouts from view counts on videos, subscribers who pay a monthly sum to support your channel, or by receiving donations and gifts from your followers.
Make sure it’s easy for followers to donate or subscribe by editing your bio with links to your donation pages. Use services like Patreon, Podia, or Memberful to connect with your subscribers outside of your channel and earn money. It takes time to build your following, so stay patient and stream yourself playing games you actually enjoy.
Did you know you can get paid to play and test games on Mistplay, Gamehag, and other platforms? If you don’t mind reporting bugs and suggesting improvements, this might be the right side hustle to make more money. Some players get lucky and are invited to play upcoming big-name titles for free—before they’re even available to the public! Payouts differ depending on the platform, so check each one out carefully before committing to a game-testing company.
If you’re more competitive, you can apply to gaming competitions that pay winners large sums of money. Games like Call of Duty, League of Legends, Fortnite, and Counter-Strike Global Offensive often have competitions where people can apply with a team and split the reward.
Sometimes it’s tricky to get a team together to be eligible, but if you start by entering local competitions, you’ll stand a better chance of earning some bucks and moving on to higher-paying tournaments.
Writing is an in-demand skill, and there are many people with full-time jobs who write content for a living. If you’d rather keep writing as a hobby, you can make money blogging by creating content about a topic you’re passionate about. If you care about what you write, you’ll have a better chance of staying consistent and motivated with posts. Plus, readers will probably enjoy your content more.
Monetize your posts with Google Adsense and affiliate links to products or services related to your content. You could go one step further and use email marketing to offer affiliate-linked products that your subscribers would find useful, earning you some additional extra cash.
To grow your blog followers, supplement your existing content by reaching more people through social media posts. Make short videos to put on TikTok or YouTube and encourage viewers to visit your blog by adding your website link in your video description. As time goes on, you’ll earn more passive income as your followers grow.
Keep in mind that blogging requires a long-term investment of time, effort, and dedication. You won’t see results right away. Stay motivated by remembering that it can be very lucrative—some people even earn enough money from blogging to live off of.
If starting a blog seems like too much work right off the bat, you could start by making money from freelance writing. Think about creating written content for companies, other blogs, online media outlets, or more. If you choose to do freelance writing, you can set your own hourly or project rates and control how much time you want to set aside each week to dedicate to writing. Websites like UpWork, Fiverr, and subreddits on Reddit are good starting points to help you find work and receive requests from clients.
It takes time to build up your reputation as a freelancer, so try to be patient. You can boost your profile by creating and linking your own site online to showcase your published or previous works. As you take on more projects, you’ll gain more experience, so you can increase your rate as time goes on.
No matter what kind of music you enjoy making, whether it’s club beats, acoustic instrumentals, or pop songs, there’s someone out there who’ll want to hear your samples. Companies like TuneCore, Bandzoogle, GhostNation, and DittoMusic help people with a passion for making music to sell their tracks to prospective customers. These companies charge a small percentage for each sale, but they handle the sales process and market to customers on your behalf—saving you time and effort.
If selling your music isn’t something you’re ready for, you can opt to teach people how to play an instrument or produce music online instead. Offer your services on teaching or tutoring websites, local ads, and more. You can decide how much to charge per session and control when and where to hold classes in your spare time.
If necessary, try to get a certificate proving you’re qualified to teach music. Some countries or states require that by law, so make sure to check what your obligations are before advertising your music teaching services.
If you want to stand out among other musicians, you can also create your own website or Youtube channel with some mini-lessons available for free. Send prospective students or clients to your site or channel where they can get a feel for your style and experience. This’ll help convince them to hire you. As you get more experienced, you can increase how much you charge per lesson.
4. Do-It-Yourself crafts
Crafting has always been well-known as a money-making hobby. There’s a huge market for hand-made jewelry, glassworks, and other kinds of crafts—so if you’re good at what you do, you can make a lot of money from creating and selling crafts.
Sell your creations online through different marketplaces like Etsy, Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree, or Reddit. When selling online, you set the price for each item, plus the shipping costs. You can also create your own online shop and sell products using Shopify, Etsy, or Wix. Just make sure you follow your state laws regarding taxes and other legal obligations.
You can also opt to sell DIY crafting materials with simple instructions for customers to put together their own products, inspired by your designs! Some examples of what you could sell include sewing patterns and DIY sets for jewelry, pottery, or painting.
Finally, earn money online from streaming yourself crafting on platforms like TikTok, Youtube, Twitch, or others. You can earn extra income from view-count payouts, subscribers paying to support you, or through donations and gifts. You can also start a Patreon, and offer special videos or lessons to customers and fans who pay a higher monthly subscription fee.
5. Interior decorating
If you’re experienced with interior design, you can help other people learn to style their home by running your own blog that shares helpful tips and suggestions. Try to focus on a specific niche in interior design, like clever styling ideas for tiny homes or for specific color schemes. Earn money by promoting products you trust with affiliate links or from Patreon and other subscription-based platforms.
If you’re able to grow your presence over time, you could start receiving promotional deals from brands offering larger sums of money—but make sure you believe in the products you agree to promote, or you could lose your hard-won followers. You can also reach out to companies and offer to promote products you believe your followers would love in exchange for exposure on their website, financial compensation, or long-term advertising agreements.
If you want to see others styling their homes with products you’ve designed, you could start your own interior decor line with print-on-demand. Selling products on-demand means you don’t have to buy stock and manage shipping. Customers simply go to your store, place an order, and the company—for example, Printful—fulfills and ships the order without you needing to lift a finger. All you have to do is choose a product, create designs, and upload them to your shop.
You can create your store using Shopify, Wix, Etsy or another ecommerce platform and advertise products through social media or email. How you advertise depends on how you’ve built your following, so stick with the social channels your followers are already on.
Interested in earning money with print-on-demand?
Reading is a popular hobby, and a lot of people consider themselves proud bookworms at heart. But what some don’t know is that you can get paid to read books and write reviews at your leisure!
Most of us rely on reviews to help us decide whether or not a book is worth buying, so publishers often try to spread the word about new books by paying for honest reviews. Companies like Kirkus Media, Reedsy Discovery, BookBrowse, and Booklist Publications offer between $5 to $60 per review depending on the book, so if you go through books like wildfire you could net yourself some extra cash writing reviews.
You could also earn money by recommending books to others on TikTok, Instagram, or Youtube, and use affiliate links for each review post. It’s a good idea to focus on a niche genre, like contemporary romance, historical fantasy, or something else you thoroughly enjoy. If you choose a genre you love, you’ll be able to better connect with fans and followers.
7. Drawing and graphic design
Art is a profitable hobby that’s well suited for making money online. Not everyone knows how to draw or has skills in graphic design, so good designers can get paid very well for their work. A few different ways you can earn money are through selling original drawings, game art, prints, or freelancing as an art teacher. Read on to learn more.
Earn extra money selling art
Original drawings, like paintings or graphic illustrations, can sometimes be slow to sell, but you can earn a lot of money for each piece due to the originality of your work.
Think about selling artwork online through DeviantArt, Etsy, or other platforms, and make sure your photographs make your art stand out. If you want to sell in person, look for art galleries, collectors, or local pop-up markets to find prospective customers.
If you’re selling online, receiving product reviews from customers who’ve bought from your store helps encourage future customers to buy. Reach out to people who’ve ordered from you and ask them for a review to start building your social proof—or, testimonials about good service and quality products from happy customers. Social proof helps prospective customers know that your business is legitimate and your products are as you describe them. If you manage to get a few good reviews, future customers will have more incentive to trust your store and buy from you.
You can also earn money by selling prints online in the form of posters, canvases, postcards, and more. To sell your prints, look for a reputable print-on-demand company like Printful and upload your designs onto products that suit your artwork.
Edit the design onto the product photos and make sure your mock-up pictures look as close to the real product as possible. Put these items up for sale on platforms like Etsy, Amazon, Ebay, or your own website. If you choose the right provider, all you have to do then is focus on marketing your products to your audience. Whenever a customer orders your product, the print-on-demand company creates and ships the item to the buyer—saving you a lot of time and effort.
Want to try selling your prints on products?
Charge a fee to teach art or graphic design
If selling isn’t what you want to do, why don’t you try teaching art? Art is one of the best hobbies to convert into a teaching side hustle, and if you’re good, potential students will know that you have experience worth learning from.
You can teach online or in person depending on your preference. If you decide to teach online, you can use UpWork, Fiverr, Reddit, Preply, or Cafetalk to find students. Decide on your rates, link art that you’ve made to your profile, and you’re ready to advertise your lessons.
If you prefer teaching in person, you can advertise with local groups or on social media, or put up flyers in popular locations in your city.
If you decide to go the social media route, make sure you build a presence by creating quick and simple tutorials on your Youtube channel, Instagram, or TikTok account. If your following grows, you could even start to earn money from views. Just don’t forget to link your social media accounts to your teaching profiles so potential students can see more of your skills and experience.
Use Patreon or other subscription-based platforms to earn money from followers outside of your social profiles. You can determine subscription tiers and offer exclusive content or how-to videos to subscribers who pay higher monthly subscription fees, allowing you to offer more and earn more from your audience.
8. Social media
Since a hobby is something done during leisure time for pleasure, browsing and using social media qualifies. Not only is it a great hobby for those who like to connect with others, it can also be a real money-maker, netting some people a full-time income.
About 4.62 billion people are now on social media, so that means a lot of businesses (both new and old) need to get their presence on social networks to stay competitive. Take advantage of this and start your own business running social media accounts for others. Use platforms like UpWork, Fiverr, Linkedin, or make your own online business to advertise your services to others. If you understand social media well, you can make money simply by creating business Instagram accounts, LinkedIn pages, or Facebook pages for other people and setting them up properly. You can also charge for each post you make and for any time you spend engaging with comments or messages from their customers.
A lot of people turn this side hustle into a full-time business because of how in-demand social media managers are, but you should only do this if you actually enjoy running social media accounts full-time.
Alternatively, you can try your hand at becoming a TikTok, Instagram, or Facebook influencer yourself to earn extra money. Influencers are people with large followings who can advertise helpful products or services related to the content they make. They earn money from affiliate links, promotional paid posts, subscriptions, or selling their own products.
For example, someone running a blog on cooking recipes can recommend great quality pans and other kitchenware to their followers in exchange for a bonus from the manufacturing company.
If you create great content around your niche and grow your following, you can reach out to brands and secure high-paying deals in exchange for your advertising services. This way, your followers get good product recommendations related to their interests and you can earn money in your spare time.
9. Furniture flipping
Creative people who like working with their hands can take it to the next level and hunt on Facebook marketplace, Gumtree, or other social platforms to find old furniture to upcycle. You can resell the finished product on other online marketplaces, your own store, or through local listings for a higher amount than you originally paid for it.
Another way to boost your earnings is to make videos sharing your upcycling process on Youtube, TikTok, or Instagram. There are plenty of people who want to learn how to make their existing furniture look better, so if you make interesting, educational content for them, you’ll reap the rewards of a bigger following. You can use affiliate links to advertise great painting or wood products, share furniture you’ve upcycled for sale, or just earn money from subscriber-based income and donations to your channels. There are lots of ways to grow your network and earn extra cash from your social presence if you put in the time to build it up.
Offer lessons online or in person to teach people how to upcycle their furniture with you guiding them through the process. You can set up meetings on Zoom, Google Meet, or Skype, and charge a fee for people to join and participate in your lesson.
In these lessons, it’s a good idea to show people exactly how you upcycle furniture in full detail and answer questions directly. You can also offer to add attendees to a private email list where you’ll advertise more high-end products or private one-on-one meetings to help turn their interest into a long-term skill.
Everybody can take a photo on their smartphone, but most people lack the expertise to turn regular photos into photographic masterpieces. If you’re experienced with photography and know how to make photos look amazing, then you can upload and sell photos on stock image marketplaces for businesses to buy.
Some famous marketplaces include Alamy, Dreamstime, Getty Images, and Shutterstock. There are many more marketplaces available online that allow you to sell stock photos, and help you build up passive income as you upload more photographs over time.
Photography also opens the door to creating your own product line. Create and sell prints using your professional photos with print-on-demand services like Printful. All you need to do is apply your photos to products and create a mockup, then you can order a sample and see if you love the final version. If you do, put the product up for sale on your online store and advertise through social media. With print-on-demand, the product is only made once it’s purchased, which saves you time and money when it comes to handling stock or warehousing.
Interested in print-on-demand with Printful?
Another way to make extra money is by reviewing photography equipment and advertising it on your social channels. Use affiliate links with your equipment recommendations so you get paid whenever someone buys the product from the manufacturer. This allows you to continue building your photography portfolio while making money on the side.
Some photographers prefer being more hands-on with their work, making them perfect candidates for wedding or event photography. You can create a personal website showcasing your portfolio and advertise your services online on social media groups, job listings, or local forums.
You’ll have to determine how much you’ll charge prospective clients depending on the work their request entails. But some photographers who do gigs on the side make more than their full-time jobs, so you should definitely take advantage of this lucrative hobby if that’s what you enjoy doing.
11. Course creation
If you’re into researching and absorbing new facts, and think you’d enjoy synthesizing complex information into easy-to-read content, then online course creation is a great way to make money.
You can focus on any niche area you want, as long as you’re knowledgeable about it and willing to do your research. Anything from painting to social media management are great subjects to create courses on. Compile information into easy-to-read online lessons that people would benefit from, then put it all together into a short course.
You can upload it onto sites like Udemy, Coursera, or others and earn money whenever someone buys your course. It’s best to make your content as visual as possible, so include videos and presentations to pull it all together. Make sure to follow correct citation guidelines and include published research to back up any claims you make.
To help market your course, take it to social media. Upload small bits of your course on your Youtube channel, TikTok page, Instagram account, Facebook page, or to Reddit subgroups. Link to the full course and engage with commenters on any posts you make. You want to connect with your students, as that lets them know there’s a real person behind the course who’s passionate about the subject.
You can also make your own physical or digital products to accompany each course, offering them for sale through your own online store. Use Wix, Shopify, or Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing to create and make money from digital ebooks or downloadable workbooks.
Passionate about health and fitness? Why not share it with the rest of the world! You can make money from creating content for people interested in focusing on their health, staying fit, or improving flexibility. You can earn money from subscribers, donations, or from affiliate links to workout equipment or exercise services.
Make sure you research any claims you make on your channels and stay focused on the well-being of your followers. Use Youtube, TikTok, and Instagram to build your social presence. You can also create your own website and share blog posts about the content you post on social media.
It’s a good idea to hone in on one specific area of fitness, so you can also suggest products that would supplement your audience’s fitness goals. Some people create their own workout apparel products and sell them to viewers using print-on-demand.
To create your own collection, think about what your audience would benefit from (i.e. eco-friendly workout apparel or original design options) and look for suppliers who offer these products. After finding the right products, design what you believe would appeal to your audience and market it through channels they’re active on.
The most important thing to remember is to only offer products that your fans want and need, otherwise you’ll lose the trust and engagement of your followers.
There are many hobbies that make you money—including ones that aren’t covered in this blog post. That said, there are several common ways to earn money on the side, regardless of the hobby. The best options include creating content, using affiliate links, becoming an influencer in your niche, working as a freelancer, opening an online store and selling digital products, or using print-on-demand to create physical products.
It doesn’t matter whether you think your hobby is profitable or not, what matters is if you enjoy it and if you’re good at what you do. When you have those boxes checked, doing it in your spare time with the goal of earning money will be a piece of cake.
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