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According to CareerBuilder, more than one-third of working millennials have a side job.
For a generation thought to be lazy and entitled we sure do a lot of work. And with the creation of the sharing economy, we’re not confined to working minimum wage or pouring drinks for extra income. We can use talent and experience to create side businesses that are more lucrative and fulfilling.
If you’re starting a side hustle, whether it’s freelance designing, consulting, reselling, whatever, there three must have tools for side gigs you’re going to need to make your business thrive and your life easier.
The type of website you’re going to need depends on the type of business you’re starting. If it’s services or good you’ll sell in person a Facebook page or free hosted website will be good. If you’re strictly selling online you could do with shop on Amazon, eBay, TeeSpring, etc.
If you plan on running transactions online or making money on the actual site you’ll want to self-host. I have a step-by-step guide on setting up a self-hosted WordPress website or blog if that’s your angle. Whatever it is you’re going to need an online presence.
2. Accounting Software
Starting out a spreadsheet is fine. When you don’t have many transactions (or monies) you can save your receipts, track expenses and invoices for free in excel. Here’s a guide to help you start.
If that was a little confusing or you don’t have time to keep track of everything manually then investing in accounting software is going to be a lifesaver. Most people know Quickbooks but there are many more out there that are cheaper and with snazzier features.
I like Xero, it’s cloud based so you can access it from any computer or mobile device, has an easy to use interface and syncs directly with payment providers like Square and Paypal (and 21 other apps, who knew there were so many apps to receive money through?)
Accounting is hard and boring but Xero is easy to use for people who aren’t good at math (and those who are I guess, I can’t speak for you) and is cheap enough to be worth the investment, $9/month for basic and $30/month for standard.
Eventually, you’ll get to the point where you’ll need a real-life accountant. Another plus on Xero is that it has unlimited users, so you can easily add an accountant to the team and they can access all your accounting details anytime anywhere.
Every type B’s nightmare, but don’t panic! There are free apps that make scheduling fun and easy! Remember the milk is great for to-do lists, youcanbook.me has a free version that allows you to make appointments without the need for emailing back and forth, heck, a Google calendar will work if you don’t want to get fancy.
Even if you’re not setting up meetings or events you still need a schedule. We all know the rabbit hole social media can be and without time blocking or some other schedule for productivity it’s hard to make good progress. I love plain ol’ pencil and paper for my weekly schedule. The feeling of crossing things off my list is a little victory for me.
Tell me: Do you have a side hustle? What are your side hustle essentials?