More and more of us are turning to side hustles at the moment. With many people being short of cash due to the coronavirus pandemic, people across the UK are looking for to new ways to supplement their income. Here, Peter Watton of OddsMonkey takes us through five side hustle ideas that could boost your spending money.

Our recent  research at OddsMonkey has found that one in four Brits have a side hustle. And, while average earnings from extra projects are £230 per month, some more lucrative hustles like blogging can bring in an extra £4000 per year. With unemployment rising (Office of National Statistics) throughout the coronavirus pandemic, more people are exploring side hustles, and seeing what they can earn outside the nine to five. So, what are the choices if you’re looking to up your income?

Well, there are plenty of different avenues that you can explore. Many people choose to rent out a spare room, offer services like photography and blogging, or try their hand at matched betting. Here, we’ll take you through the side hustles that might give you that bit of extra spending money.

Blogging

Blogging was one of the most lucrative side hustles that we found in our research, with earnings averaging £333 per month — not bad for a side project. It can take a while to get your skills up to the level where you can charge money for them, so it’s important to factor in that you’ll need to dedicate some time to this.

However, if you have the time, this is a useful side hustle as it can be done from home.  You also shouldn’t need any extra equipment, meaning less investment up front. So, if you have a way with words, try contacting friends, family and small businesses who might need blogging services. You can also look for job adverts that ask for freelance bloggers, and look to build up your client base that way.

Matched betting

We all know about betting, but you might not know what matched betting is. Matched betting is a form of betting where you use free promotions offered by betting providers to place bets on both outcomes on an event. All bookmakers will have free offers to encourage people to join and bet with them, and by using these to place both lay bets and a back bets, you’re  guaranteed to make a profit or at least make your money back..

Any winnings from matched betting are also tax-free, so you don’t need to worry about factoring in any tax amounts when calculating your earnings. By using a calculation site for matched betting, you can weigh up your bets and make smart plays to earn you some extra money.

Dropshipping

Dropshipping is an increasingly popular way to make money online. Lots of sellers — from Amazon to small businesses — use dropshipping. Dropshippers buy products from suppliers on behalf of customers, and then charge the customer a higher price than the supplier charges them. This is where the profit margin comes from.

So, a customer will order something from a dropshipper, the dropshipper will order from the supplier, and the supplier will ship to the customer. While the fulfilment of orders is handled by the supplier, the drop shipper completes the public-facing business aspects, such as marketing, selling, social media and running a website. This means the supplier doesn’t deal directly with customers.

To start your own dropshipping business, you will need to dedicate some time to finding a product you want to sell, setting up an e-commerce website, and doing some online marketing. Like blogging, this one does require that you give it some time and effort, especially in the beginning — however, there is potential to make some great extra money once you’re up and running.

Surveying

There are lots of market research websites that will pay you either money or vouchers to answer questions about everything from video games to car insurance. This is because companies need customer opinions to help them target their products better — and they are willing to pay for this useful customer feedback.

When deciding which deals, companies, and websites to go for, make sure that you don’t pay to join any sites. There are plenty of websites that won’t charge you, and many scam websites will pose as survey websites to get you to sign up with your bank details. You should also set up an email address especially for surveys, so that your personal isn’t flooded with offers and requests.

Some popular websites for making money from surveys are i-Say and Swagbucks, so check these out to see how much you could earn. These sites will pay you mostly in Amazon vouchers, which are a useful thing to have on-hand for all sorts of routine purchases.

Testing products for companies

Product testing is a fun, easy way to make a bit of extra money and grab some freebies. You can test video games, food, cosmetics, and more. Some companies will offer cash rewards (as much as £10 or £25 per product), and some will offer vouchers instead.

It’s important to note that there are lots of product testing scams out there, so be careful who you choose to work with, and don’t give your information out until you’re certain the company and the offer are genuine. It’s best to contact the brands of any products you’re planning to test, so you can check with them directly if they are running focus groups, and be sure product is genuine.

If you do find a third-party testing website that you think looks like a good deal, contact the actual brand of the products they are testing — they will be able to clarify whether the website is a real product testing site, and if they are indeed working with them to get customer feedback.

With people across the UK being short of money this year, many of us will be turning to side hustles to earn us some more spending money, and to give us more security with household expenses. With these ideas, you can find a source of supplementary income that fits both the time you have available, and the budget you have to invest in a new venture. So dust off that laptop, and see how much you could bring in.