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The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

So You Want to Start a Side Business of your own...


Creating a side hustle from scratch isn’t for everyone. I know, you’re thinking that’s not the best way to start off this off, but it’s true!

It takes a fair amount of work, drive, and dare I say research. I know, I know. You thought you left research behind in school and that all the icky, not fun work was left at your day job.

Well, you’re no stranger to hard work and this research won't be as difficult as you think. After all, reading this official guide is form of research (so, so far you’re doing great!). But it is important to note that a side hustle won’t be all fun and games. Nothing always is.

But as least a side hustle is something you actually have control of. And let’s face it, control becomes rarer and rarer as you venture further down the rabbit hole of adulting.

Don’t get me wrong, starting a side hustle of your own can be a lot of fun! I love creating resources and products of my own and I truly enjoy writing emails and creating sales pages.

But it’s called a hustle for a reason.

It takes time, patience, consistency and dedication. But, if you have the drive you’ll find it’s worth going through all the hard work in an effort to create something that is uniquely your own.

So right about now you may be wondering:

(click on one of the links to jump ahead)

Don’t worry, I answer all those questions for you down below.  Just scroll down to keep reading… (or you can click on one of the links above to jump right to it :)

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

What is a side hustle?

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

What’s the meaning of side hustle, side business, or side gig? Well essentially, they’re all the same.

A side hustle is simply a way for you to make extra funds in addition to your current income.

A side hustle is a series of systems that work together to create a business. The key benefit of a side hustle is that it’s a business that can be run in addition to “another job”, or what I affectionately like to call your day hustle.

A side hustle can also be more than just an additional cash flow. It can be a way for you to pursue a passion or interest and get paid to do it. Or, it can be a way for you to save up extra funds for that vacation home you’ve always wanted or finally start that year long trip knowing that you have cash coming in on the side while you travel.


What are the benefits of starting a side hustle?

If you're on the fence about starting a side hustle of your own, it does come with it’s fair share of perks:

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

1. Save for your dreams. A side hustle can provide a good side income in addition to your current income to save for future endeavors like a house, vacations, retirement, bucket lists, etc.

2. More pocket change. You can also use your side hustle income to supplement your current income if you’re not making enough to provide for your lifestyle or your family.

3. Pursue a passion. A side hustle is a great way to legitimately get paid to do that thing that you really love and follow your passion - even if it’s not a full time pursuit.

4. Reach your dreams. A side hustle can provide a solid foundation for reaching  your biggest dreams and achieving your biggest goals. Creating something of your own gives you an inner confidence boost, and it reinforces that you can achieve anything you’ve ever wanted.

5. Generate passive income. Side hustles are great way to create multiple passive income streams. By passive income, I mean that your side business is working while you’re physically not. So yes, that whole make money while you sleep phrase (which is tired and overused), is absolutely true with a side hustle.

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

6. Leave your current job. A side hustle can help you escape that 9-5 cubicle lifestyle. It can be the gateway to launching the ultimate business of your dreams. And once your side hustle is successfully established, you can finally leave your current job behind and take matters (and life) into your own hands.

7. More flexible lifestyle. A side hustle can provide a gateway to create a business that can travel with you. Starting one could be you’re stepping stone to location independence. That’s actually one of the main reasons why I started mine in the first place.

*See Related: Create a Business That Can Travel With You

8. Take things to the next level. If you already have a blog, a small growing social following, or do some freelance work on the side, establishing a serious side hustle is a great way for you to transition into an actual small business, and beyond...

*See Related: 13 Reasons You Should Start a Side Hustle (Especially If You’re In Debt)


Can Anybody Start a Side Hustle?

If I said a side hustle was for everyone I’d be lying. Not everyone has the desire or need to have a business on the side. Usually someone who starts a side hustle has one, or several, of these traits:

  • Someone with a mind full of endless ideas + the drive to make them a reality

  • Someone forced into circumstances that require them to earn more money

  • Someone with a skill or passion that is worth sharing

  • Someone with a natural entrepreneurial spirit

  • Someone who wants to prove something to themselves, or to others

*psst* to learn your own side hustler personality type, take the quiz here


In addition to the drive that propels you, one of these might ring true for you as well:

A Side Hustle Is Great for Makers

  1. Designers, Artists, Programmers, & Developers who have something to share like a skill or a passion (even if you’re not currently working in this field, a side hustle is the best segue to start).

  2. Writers & Copywriters who are trying to be seen, “read”, & heard.

  3. Aspiring Freelance Designers who need a place to start and showcase their talent and skills.

A Side Hustle Is Great for Doers

  1. Mothers, Fathers, & Parental Duos who want more ways to provide for their family & reach their lifetime goals.

  2. Aspiring Entrepreneurs who already work a full time, but just need the push to start a side business of their own now.

  3. Students who may need a little extra cash to support their way through school and who worry about job security once they graduate.

A Side Hustle Is Great for Explorers

  1. Travelers who want to sustain their adventures through generating additional funds that help support their travels.

  2. Expats who want to supplement their income or who want find a productive way keep ties to their home country. A side hustle would also be great for an expat spouse that wants to have something of their own (that’s not tied to their partner that brought them overseas).

  3. Aspiring Travelpreneurs & Digital Nomads that want a business that can travel with them (like me!).


What are some profitable side hustle ideas?

Side hustles can fall under a range of possibilities. According to this entrepreneur.com article and graphic, there are 5 main categories that side hustles fall under:

The Hobby Based Side Hustle

  • photography based side hustle (like wedding, solopreneur, family, etc.)

  • cooking based side hustle (like personal chef, meal plan adviser, etc.)

  • craft based side hustles (like homemade goods & templates on etsy)

  • design skill based side hustle (like t-shirts, mugs, collateral, etc.)

The Knowledge Based Side Hustle

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com
  • freelance based side hustle (like graphic design, website development, or writing articles or through sites like Upwork or Fiverr)

  • course based side hustle (that uses platforms like Teachable, Thinkfic, or Udemy to host it’s courses, or you can even host courses on your own)

  • tutor based side hustle (for face to face teaching using Skype or Wyzant, teaching other languages, or even teaching english).

  • eBook based side hustle (that you create for Kindle/Amazon or even self publish your own).

The Gig Economy Based Side Hustle

These side hustles reply on other established platforms and could be a:

  • drivers for Lyft or Uber (I’m sure by now you’ve already heard of these)

  • local tour guides (through Tours By Locals)

  • help with odd jobs and home improvement task (on taskrabbit)

  • dog walking or babysitting (like care.com for trusted at home sitters)

The Sharing Based Economy Side Hustle

  • renting out rooms (like the ever popular Airbnb)

  • renting out your actual car (like through Turo)

  • Renting out your clothes (like through StyleLend)

The Online Side Hustle

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

This, by far, is my preferred method because it can lead to limitless growth.

Many times, people who fall under this side hustle type are the ones whose side hustles enabled them to leave their day jobs.

You’ll also notice that the people I mention here have their own websites, which also helps them  create even more streams of revenue...

  • Buying and selling products on Etsy or Amazon (like this family does)

  • Affiliate marketing (I even created an affiliate program for this book)

  • Virtual assistant (start your own business with multiple recurring clients like she did)

  • Running a digital product empire (like she does, she does, and he does)

Most likely, your side hustle will be a combination of these…

For example, my side hustle is an online based that a combines a hobby based side hustle with a knowledge based (I know, it sounds soooo wordy, but trust me that creating a side hustle on your own terms is the best way to go).

An online side hustle (the combines hobby and knowledge based side hustle traits) is the type of side hustle that I recommend you start.

This type of side hustle gives you the most control and flexibility, and it’s also the best opportunity for limitless growth. You decide the focus, products, or skills that you’ll offer. And because it’s your own, you can shape it to build and support your ideal lifestyle.

*psst* If you need some guidance on how to start a side hustle that’s based on your unique set of strengths, it’s what this book is all about.


How Much Does It Cost To Start a Side Hustle?

The pricing can depend,  but if you’re starting an online based side hustle (because that’s what I have experience in), you can get started for under $50 a month! There are only a few essential tools needed to cover the 4 basic categories: a website platform, an email provider, a multi-purpose design tool, and tools for handling money.


The tools that I recommend starting with aren’t ones you’ll need to change later, these are tools that will grow with you as your business grows.


The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com


For your website I recommend using Squarespace, which is a hosting company, a website platform, and a web design tool all in one.

You can use it for your blog, your product shop, your landing pages, and even as a place to host your podcasts. And because of it’s built in features and easy to use custom coding blocks, it can seamlessly integrate with countless platforms.

You can get started for $16 a month or pay in one lump annual payment of $144, which would bring your total down $12 a month if you broke it down over 12 months.

*See Related: 7 Reasons Squarespace is the Best Tool For Your Business

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com


You need a mass communication tool for growing your email list, regularly conversing with your audience, and for utilizing automated sequences to help generate more sales. Here are different ways you can use your email platform in your business. Here are a few ways I personally use email in my side business:

  1. I use an email provider to deliver my weekly #InsideMyHustle Thursdays Newsletter.

  2. I use it to deliver my interest email opt-ins (aka the free PDF resources or templates that I create to supplement my content - like this free guide here)

  3. I use to to set up a deliver informative automated email sequences - from various welcome series, to 5 day challenges, to free courses.


To handle all of these tasks effectively I recommend using MailerLite.  You can also use a services like Mailchimp, ActiveCampaign, or ConvertKit, but I honestly find MailerLite to be the easiest, most affordable, and most feature packed platform. Plus it’s FREE under 1,000 email subscribers.


*See Related: This is Why I Switched From ConvertKit to MailerLite



Try to find a program that can handle these essential tasks:

For Creating Social Media and Promotional Graphics

These are all the graphics that you’ll use to promote your blog posts, services and products. These can be for Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter as well as for creating product mockups to display throughout your website.

For Creating Useful Resources and Materials

I recommend finding a program that can handle these two essential tasks:

  1. For Creating Social Media and Promotional Graphics

    • Instagram Quote Templates

    • Facebook Images/Posts/Ads

    • Pinterest Pins

    • Blog Post Images

    • YouTube Thumbnails

    • Product Mockup Images

    • Opt-in Freebie Sign Up Buttons/Graphics

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

2. For Creating Informative Resources & Materials

You need a way to engage your audience and encourage them to opt in to your email mailing list. Resources like these can help your customers make the most of your products and help walk your clients through a process. These can be various PDF resources like:

  • Worksheets & Workbooks

  • Mini Guides & Ebooks

  • Checklists & Cheatsheets

  • Self Published Books of Your Own  

2 Design Tools That May Work For You

The Easy Option: Canva. Canva is free unless you get the business plan (called Canva for Work) which allows you to adapt your designs easily for different social media platforms - plus it offers a few other convenient features for $12.95 a month.

 *See Related: How to Use Canva For Instagram (video series)


The Robust Option: InDesign is how I create PDF guides, printables, & workbooks with fillable text boxes, markable checkboxes, and clickable image or text links, and this self published book. I also use it to all make my social media graphics as well. InDesign by itself (as in without the rest of the Adobe Suite) only costs $19.99. I even have a free InDesign course that teaches you how to create info products of your own.

*See Related:  41 Reasons InDesign is the Best Design Tool For Your Business



I am no financial expert, but in my opinion there are 2 essential tools an online business should have:

image-money.pngThe Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

Bookkeeping Software

This is for tracking your business finances, ensuring you’re making a profit, monitoring your business growth, and for being better prepared to handle taxes.

Wave is an online bookkeeping platform that can link up with your business bank account. You need a banking account that’s separate account from your personal checking account to make things easier come tax time (this is the one I use).

Wave also allows you to create invoices (if you have clients) and they also accept all major credit cards if you connect through your Stripe account.

And the best part about Wave is... IT’S FREE!

There are some other great booking platforms out there like Quickbooks and Freshbooks. So you can check those out too.

Receiving Payments

You need a tool that will allow you to easily receive payments from customers (for digital & physical products).

I use SendOwl to deliver all my digital products (prints, templates, books). It has a lot of cool features which is why I prefer using it over the built in Squarespace shop option. You can add product upsells, cart abandonment, create a subscription service, offer an affiliate program for your products, sell services or physical products, and more.

SendOwl starts out at only $9 a month with NO per cost transaction fee (instead, it connects to Stripe to accept all major credits, so the standard Stripe fees apply with each sale).


- Total with Canva instead of InDesign: $38

- Total with InDesign instead of Canva: $45


How long does it take to start a side hustle?

I’m going to give an answer you’re not going to like… it honestly depends.

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

It depends on the type of side hustle your creating + how serious you are about starting one that actually means business.

I know you want to hear “in a day” or “in a weekend”. And while that may be true for getting started with a company like Uber, if you’re creating a side hustle from scratch it can take a little time to get going.

But, if you remember, creating your own side hustle has a range of benefits. So if you know you want to own your own business one day, or perhaps leave your day hustle for good, a side hustle that you DIY and put together yourself is the way to go (in my humble personal opinion).


Since my experience comes from starting an online based side hustle, I’ll share my perspective on how long it might take you to start. 

If you’re just starting out and aren’t sure what you would offer, it can take some time to figure out your exact focus and begin to build a brand. If you were starting a side business with NO idea, topic, website, or experience you could get a side hustle started in under 60 days.

If you had a small blog, a growing social following, a website, and perhaps some blogging experience, it would of course take you even less time.

If you need a plan of attack to help get your side hustle started, check out this free roadmap.


What Do You Need to Start a Side Hustle?

Thankfully not a lot, if you’re starting an online based side hustle! In comparison to most businesses, the overhead for starting an online side business is relatively low. You can even start your side hustle for under $50 a month!

*See Related Video: How to Run a Side Hustle for $50

To get started you only really need a few key things. Yes, there will be others along the way as your side business grows, but these 6 things are the most important.

SIDENOTE: Some of these may seem obvious while others may not seem like a necessity (like an email provider or a separate mailing address). But, if you acknowledge now that these are the definite essentials, then the entire side hustle process will be that much easier for you.


The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com
  1. a computer or laptop (obviously)
  2. internet access (again, obviously)
  3. website platform (I use Squarespace)
  4. designated bank account (I use CapitalOne 360)
  5. mass email provider (I use MailerLite)
  6. mailing address separate from your own (b ecause of the CAN-SPAM Act)

The best news is that you don’t need all of these things right away! You truly only need a computer and internet access to start.  And if you’d like to know when it’s best to get your website, email provider, mailing address, and a business bank account, then follow this free roadmap.


The 4 Essential Steps of Starting a Side Hustle

1. Determine Your Niche

First you'd figure out the topic your side hustle will focus around and the problem you'll be solving. This is also the stage when you'll create a business plan, figure out your business mission, and develop a profit plan. 

2. Develop Your Brand

This stage is all about establishing your visual brand. This is when you'd choose your color palette, create your logo, develop your social media graphics, and put together your website. 

3. Implement Simple Systems

Systems are a huge part of creating a serious side hustle. This is the stage where you'd incorporate automated systems for email marketing, a payment processing, and a plan for creating consistent content. 

4. Set Up Automated Sales Funnels

This stage is about forming a funnel - from interest to income. It begins with sharing engaging valuable content and providing an answer to a desired need in the form of your product. 



Is There a Side Hustle Book, or a Set Plan I Can Follow?

I know, that would make this entire process so much easier. 

While there are many free resources that you can google and piece together to create an ultimate plan, a simpler solution does exist. The DIY Side Hustle Starter Guide is a no fluff step-by-step book, complete with visual guides to help you create a side hustle that means business.

The DIY Side Hustle Starter Guide is a comprehensive daily handbook that walks you through the four stages of starting a side hustle that means business.

From nailing your niche and building your brand to setting your systems and forming a funnel that will help your side business run on autopilot.


When you get The DIY Side Hustle Starter Guide, you get more than just a book:

  • Daily Action Steps that walk you through starting a side hustle from square one, day by day.

  • Clickable Checklists to track your progress throughout the 60 day guide

  • Engaging Visuals that help you learn, process, and retain the information better + visual tutorials that range from choosing your ideal color palette to DIY your own logo

  • Recommend Resources with links to blog posts, videos, and tools that I mention throughout the guide to help you get your side hustle up and running.

  • The Blog Brand Business Plan is a 25+ page interactive PDF workbook that supplements the DIY Starter Guide and easily guides you through creating a business plan of your own.

  • Exclusive Access to the Smart Hustle Resource Library that contains even more checklists, workbooks, flowcharts, cheatsheets, and more that will help with each stage of your journey.

Check out the book for yourself here.

The Official Guide to Starting a Side Hustle, Side Business, or Side Gig of Your Own - Using The DIY Side Hustle Starter Guide | Yuri Gibson of viaYuri.com

Now that you know how to start a side hustle, what are the next steps?

We covered a lot, so let’s quickly recap what you now already know about side hustles:

  • There are at least 8 great benefits of starting your own side hustle

  • There are tons of, profitable side hustle ideas, and an online based side hustle is the one with the most possibilities

  • What motivations and personal traits make people a great fit for starting a side hustle of their own

  • How long it might take you to start a side hustle is you’re starting from scratch

  • The 6 essentials needed to run your own side hustle (and the only 2 you need to get started!)

  • The 4 crucial stages for starting a side hustle that can help run itself

  • A comprehensive day by day plan you can follow to get started


Your next steps are to put all this knowledge, and research, to work and get started!

One of my favorite quotes is “If you want something you’ve never had, you have to do something you’ve never done”.

“If you want something you’ve never had, you have to do something you’ve never done”.
— Thomas Jefferson

If you’ve been looking for a way to “upgrade your lifestyle” and take what you do to the next level, a side hustle is the perfect place to start.

But if you need a little push to get you moving, you can download The Side Hustle Quickstart Roadmap for free right here.

And if you’d like to learn even more about side hustles, here are some additional resources that I created. Just click on the links below to learn more:


Happy Side Hustling!

Formal education will make you a living, self-education will make you a fortune.
— Jim Rohn