In the work at home world, we call our multiple work from home money earners our “eggs.” This post is going to cover various work at home “eggs” or side hustle ideas you can use to make money when work at your main job dries up. And if you've been working at home for any length of time, then you know this happens on occasion!
It's never a good idea to rely on just one job as a home-based worker, because you never know what's going to happen. I've personally experienced companies laying off/firing workers, changes in available workload, and pay rates suddenly dropping so low that the job was no longer worth my time. So you've got to be prepared.
I polled my readers on Facebook a while back and asked around on forums to find out what sites and various industries most people use for back up work from home. Below is a collection of some of the specific sites readers mentioned.
Note – Keep in mind some of these are just good for extra money, and some possibly amount to part time home based jobs.
Side Hustle Ideas – 12 Legit Options
This is a site you can register with and write ads. It's not too difficult, and you don't have to be a professional writer or even a professional copywriter to write the ads. If you'll notice, most ads you see online are really short. The ads you write for Boost CTR need to be catchy and attention-grabbing, but fortunately not lengthy. And you can get better at it with practice.
One reader on Facebook said that Pleio has been a decent “egg” for her. This is work at home helping people with medication reminders, and it is phone work so you'll need a quiet background while you do the calls if you decide to apply and get hired.
Another reader on Facebook said that she loves working at Lifebushido and that it keeps her busy enough she doesn't really need to look for anything else. I'm not sure if this would count as a back up job since it requires so much time, but wanted to mention it anyway since it was a response I got and I have written about it here.
VIPKid is a company many of my readers have had great things to say about. They hire home-based ESL teachers for Chinese children. It's possible to do this as a “side hustle” because it is very flexible work. The company does allow you to set your own schedule, with no minimum or maximum hourly requirements per week. To qualify, you must have any “formal” or “informal” teaching experience such as mentoring, tutoring, coaching, or alternative education as well as a bachelor's degree in any field.
This is a work from home position for people who would like to teach non-English speakers how to speak conversational English. Basically you do the work via webcam, interacting with people who have the Cambly app installed. You do not need any professional experience, but you do need to be a native speaker of English.
Many people suggested Fancy Hands, and it's a site I have used myself. Basically this is task-based virtual assisting. Each task pays a different amount, and you might be doing anything from checking to see if a store is open to reserving airline tickets.
This company hires remote transcribers, and it's ideal for transcription newbies because the work is pretty easy and you don't need any real experience to get in. You just have to pass a test. This is one company that has been around for a long time, and I've never heard anything bad about them. The pay is low so most people only rely on it for extra money.
Slice the Pie
This is another one that I've personally kept on the back burner for extra money, and it was mentioned by a few people I polled. It's very easy — you just listen to snippets of songs and then rate/review them in a few sentences. You can get paid once you have earned $10. Payouts are made on Tuesdays and Fridays. Again, this is just extra money. However, staying active on the site means regular cash outs are possible.
I admit this has been a go-to site for extra money for me for quite some time. You get paid to write articles for Textbroker's many clients. It's not hard to get accepted at all, but unfortunately unless you can get bumped up to the 4-star level, there's not much work to do. Textbroker pays reliably every single week on Friday provided you have the minimum $10 in your account required to cash out. I've found the writing to be pretty easy.
This is a short task site with a variety of work available at any given time. You can find everything from data entry to transcription and even some article writing. I have used this site myself many times in the past and occasionally like to log on and do a few small jobs. For some this is just extra money but there are many people who get more than just extra out of it.
My personal experience with Clickworker is very limited, but this one gets mentioned quite frequently on the forums and also from my followers on Facebook. It's task-based work. The pay varies depending on the project you're doing.
Work from home reviewing calls for Humanatic. Basically you listen to recorded phone conversations and tag them according to whether or not the call you heard was sales-related. I've done this a little and the pay is extremely low (less than $5 an hour for me), but it's kind of fun and I used to like to hop on and review calls here and there in between other work. It adds up over time, and they do pay out weekly.
So many people are listing side gigs on Fiverr and earning income. For many, it's just a little extra money here and there. But for others, Fiverr pays the bills! If you don't know what to list there, see this post with ideas for what to sell on Fiverr. I also got some Fiverr pro-tips in another post after interviewing people who have managed to earn money with the site.
Go here to try it.
Best Types of Jobs for Fill-In/Back Up Work at Home
The best type of back up work at home job is almost always going to be something flexible so that you can pick it up or drop it as needed depending on how things are going with other work you do. Freelance writing is always very flexible and so is transcription. These are additionally two fields you can break into with little to no experience.
A person on my Facebook page also suggested mystery shopping as a good industry to get involved in for side money. While mystery shopping isn't done at home — with the exception of telephone mystery shopper work — it is very flexible, independent work.
For more help on finding back up work, browse these other sections of my website:
- The massive list of work at home jobs offering flexible schedules. Lots of other options here.
- Big list of places that hire writers – Almost always flexible work to do as you have time or in between other work.
- Big list of places that hire transcribers – If you're new to transcription, you'll want to look through the list of sites that hire beginners near the top.
- Top 10 companies hiring mystery shoppers
P.S. – Looking for more than just a back-up work at home job? If so, I recommend getting a membership at FlexJobs, one of the most popular job search sites focused on flexible and/or telecommuting companies. They guarantee their listings to be scam-free as well. I've had my membership for over a year. You can get 30 percent off your subscription with promo code AFFILPROMO.
This post was originally published in May of 2013. Updated and re-published for April 2017.