Best Side Hustles for Truck Drivers | 7 Ideas To Prepare You

side hustles for truck drivers

God bless the open road! What better way to see the country on someone else’s dime than being a truck driver. Just you, your rig, and the open road. With many drivers racking up over a million road miles, truck drivers are the heart and soul of the many countries.

Unfortunately, with an increase in automation technology, many truck drivers are fearing insecure about their future and the smart ones starting to think about the future.

So what can you do today to start earning extra cash, while also prepare you for the future?

There are lots of options that include even more driving like Uber and similar services, but after driving around all day, the last thing you might want to do is jump right back into driving. Plus these jobs will be gone as soon as they figure out how to get robots to drive them.

So what are some of the best side hustles that will allow truck drivers to make extra money? We will take a look at some of the best options to generate extra income for your wallet.

Some of these even make money for you while you are busy driving at your day job.

Read on.

1. Affiliate Marketing

image of Affiliate Marketing

A bit of tech-savvy will stand you in good stead for making money by way of affiliate marketing. The practice of inserting third party links into a website for visitors to click on and make a purchase. Once the purchase is completed then you get a commission from the sales that you make.

With over 35% of all affiliate marketers making in excess of 20000 per year its a lucrative business. The nice thing is that due to tracking cookies your purchaser does not need to buy the item on the spot. In many instances, if the buyer returns and completes the sale within 30 days you still get the commission. 

If you can set up a website and drive traffic to it effectively this can be a nice way to make a bit of extra cash. The nice thing is that once the initial set up is done this is a relatively ‘hands-off’ way of generating some extra dollars.

If you are not too tech savvy but like the concept of earning money in this fashion, you could always pay someone to set up your website for you, or use one of the many website builders online that are designed to simplify the process for you. 

Advantages

  • Can be operated from anywhere
  • No fees
  • Low start-up cost
  • Wide product range
  • Scalable

Disadvantages

  • Website set-up
  • Hidden fees with certain programs
  • Varying Income
  • Malicious hackers can steal commissions

Things to consider

As with most new things, there is a bit of a learning curve with affiliate marketing. To learn the ins and outs quicker it may be worth investing in an online course or training program to get up to speed. You should also check out some of the different affiliate programs to see which one best suits your needs. 

It is a good idea to spend time upfront researching your product niche and area to identify one that is popular yet not overly competitive. As affiliate marketing has increased in popularity the market has seen many people jumping on the bandwagon making many areas flooded with websites and promotional advertising.

As we have identified the affiliate marketing arena is already quite saturated in some areas. Due to this, you will want to give consideration to how you will effectively market your website or products. 

2. Amazon FBA

image of amazon FBA

Similar to affiliate marketing is Amazon FBA. This is Fulfillment by Amazon and while affiliate marketing allows you to sell products from any number of companies Amazon FBA allows you to sell your own products while they handle the shipping. This relieves you from having to physically package and ship products manually. 

Set up your products and promote via your website or your social media channels and let Amazon handle the rest. You have the option to sell virtually anything you can think of and FBA gives you the advantage of having a trusted name like Amazon as your shipping partners. 

This also gives your customers some security as they are easily able to view and track the progress of their package through Amazon’s shipping process increasing customer’s visibility to their orders and with Amazon currently owning 49% of all US eCommerce there are profits to be made. 

Advantages

  • Faster shipping 
  • Items are trackable
  • Amazon provides customer support
  • Buyers can receive free shipping

Disadvantages

  • Amazons flexible policy means more items may be returned
  • Lose the relationship with the customer
  • Inventory tracking may be challenging
  • There are fees to pay

Things to consider

There are literally thousands of products for sale via Amazon’s Marketplace so it may be worth investing a bit of time in making your listings stand out from the rest. This means writing the best possible product descriptions and perhaps investing money in some high-quality photography.

To give you an edge over the competition it is always worth investing in some training that provides insights and guidance. There is one training program that has consistently made 6-figure Amazon entrepreneurs, and that is Amazing Selling Machine. You can read my full review here

3. Ebay

image of ebay

While you are driving about through different cities you may get the chance to stop off at various charity or bric-a-brac shops and score some easily sellable bargains. List them on ebay, drop off for shipping at the local post office and make yourself a tidy profit.

The nice thing about ebay selling is that you don’t have to be situated in one location to operate this sideline, and with 182 bn buyers worldwide it’s a captive audience. You can operate eBay from anywhere with just a laptop, and being mobile may mean that you may find better bargains depending on the area. 

Advantages

  • Easy setup
  • Can operate remotely
  • Can sell any item
  • Can ship to any country
  • Feedback rating system 

Disadvantages

  • Listing fees can add up
  • Have to refund returns
  • Ultra competitive
  • Items may not always sell

Things to consider

As eBay has been around for quite some time, many sellers have managed to build a following of loyal customers and many successful sellers have set up eBay stores. It may take a large amount of effort to entice customers away from their preferred sellers.

It may be advantageous to spend a few extra cents on each listing to highlight them or raise then to the top of the category, at least until you make a few sales and gain some feedback from customers.

Selling items means having a flow of inventory so you will need to keep sourcing the items that you wish to sell. If relying on items that can be listed and resold then inventory may fluctuate depending on the items you can locate.

4. Etsy

image of etsy

If you are artistic or crafty then you can turn your hobby into a money maker to add some extra to your bank account. If you have a talent for painting, jewelry making, wood modeling or anything else then Etsy is a great place to sell your creations. 

This handmade selling powerhouse is based in Brooklyn, NY and was founded by Rob Kalin, Chris Maguire, and Haim Schoppik. Simply list your items for sale and set your price. 

Etsy allows you to set your own prices for items so take a look at what similar items are selling for and use that as a guideline for your own products. Make sure you allow for listing fees as there are some charges, but once those have been deducted the remaining profit is all yours to keep.

Advantages

  • List your own items for sale
  • Easy process
  • Relatively low fees
  • Can set your own prices
  • Some tax advantages depending on the area

Disadvantages

  • Many similar items for sale
  • Etsy has control over your store
  • Pricing can be low due to undercutting
  • SEO is difficult

Things to consider

Creating and selling your own handmade designs can take time so you may want to test the kind of demand you will get. Once you have an idea of the kind of weekly or monthly sales that you can expect then you will need to create enough items to keep up with your demand. 

Decide on a method for payment and stick to it so that you can easily monitor transactions and keep a good track of monies earned for tax purposes. Like any other form of income, money that is earned from selling your wares online is still subject to income tax so ensure you keep good records.

5. Airbnb

image of airbnb

If you are an over the road driver that is away from home for several weeks at a time then think about earning some income using your home. You can list your home on Airbnb and rent it out for a fee. This works especially well if you are near a popular area like a city or football stadium.

Guests book their stay via Airbnb’s website and the nice thing about their service is that you can schedule the availability of your home using their online calendar. Meaning you can block out the days or weeks that you will be in town and keep your home for yourself. This is useful if you need your home for the holidays or something similar. 

This can be a lucrative venture as renting out your entire home can earn you hundreds of dollars a week and with Airbnb having over 6 million users demand can be high You will want to think about engaging the services of a reliable cleaner to clean between visits, but the cost of this can be built into the overall rental.

Advantages

  • No outlay
  • Can set your own rental rates
  • Schedule your own availability
  • Relatively low fees

Disadvantages

  • Strangers in your home
  • Risk of theft or damages
  • Will need a cleaner and /or property manager if you are absent
  • Restrictions may apply depending on the area or if you have an HOA.

Things to Consider

As there will be strangers in your home you may want to think about removing expensive or sentimental items and keeping them in a locked closet or some kind of off-site storage. The same goes for family photos, you are renting to people to use the home as their own so having photos of you, the wife, and the kids strewn about all over may not create the best atmosphere for guests.

Decide which areas of the home your guests can have access to and which are off-limits. You may also want to check into your liability for certain things. E.g, if one of your guests sets fire to the kitchen who is liable for the damage? You might need to change or increase your insurance now you are effectively a landlord. 

6. Social Media Marketing

image of social media marketing

If you have a laptop and a few spare hours while you are not driving, then you could make some extra cash from managing social media marketing for small businesses. If you are familiar with Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Twitter then you can charge a monthly fee for offering management services to companies. 

This can be a lucrative business with minimal outlay though you may want to invest in some kind of social media calendar or scheduling tool to keep track of posting and accounts. It is also helpful to do some hashtag research for the companies that you are promoting so you can directly post to their targeted audience. 

If you have a good handle on marketing then you can also expand social media marketing and offer to set up paid ads services. There are over 3 billion active social media users so there is plenty of opportunities for you to gain clients. Many people are unsure how to set up Google, Pinterest, or Facebook ads and this is where you can top up your earnings by providing assistance.

Advantages

  • Low start-up cost
  • Can operate from anywhere
  • Can set levels of service
  • Flexible
  • Only basic social media knowledge required

Disadvantages

  • Competitive
  • Challenging to acquire new clients
  • Advertising costs to get clients
  • Client demands can be tricky to manage
  • Can be hard to track multiple accounts

Things to consider

Although there are not necessarily any formal skills required to operate as a social media manager the field is very competitive so it might benefit you and your clients for you to take a couple of online courses to learn the finer techniques that can be employed when managing customer accounts. 

Have a system in place to effectively manage and deal with any complaints from your clients and work quickly towards a resolution. When starting out as a social media manager clients can be hard to win and just one bad review can ruin your reputation. 

7. Write an eBook

image of eBook

After driving all day you might want to give the gray cells a bit of a workout and share some of your knowledge with the general public. If you have any skills or talents or you just want to write a novel you can think about publishing an ebook on Amazon’s KDP site. 

Here you can publish a book online for people to purchase. Depending on the subject and how long the book is you can set your own sales price accordingly. Amazon has some nice tools for you to track and monitor sales across different countries.

In addition, you also have full creative license within reason to write your book anyway that you wish and there is the opportunity to make greater sales commissions than you would with a traditional publisher. 

Advantages

  • Can write at your own pace
  • No limit to how many ebooks you can publish
  • Can set own sales prices
  • Good tracking tools
  • Better commissions

Disadvantages

  • Heavy competition may mean reduced pricing
  • Many books cover the same topics
  • Will have to do own marketing
  • Open to plagiarised
  • Less editorial support

Things to consider

When self-publishing there is much more freedom around creativity and control, not to mention that there are no deadlines to meet. You can write at your own pace. However, this also means that you don’t have any kind of editorial team to offer support in terms of assistance, proofreading, or motivation.

As you are managing your own book creation and sales then you will also want to look into obtaining copyrights for your work. Having your book online means that it can be used or copied with ease so you will need copyrights to protect your work from being stolen. 

Summary

Just because you spend several hours a day behind the wheel it does not mean that you are restricted when it comes to ways to make some extra money. This list should give you some good ideas and suggestions for how you can boost your income. 

If you are tired of driving extended hours maybe you have considered leaving trucking and coming off the road altogether. If that is the case then many of these ideas can also be turned into a full-time business with a full-time income to match.

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