Side Checks Podcast

6 Things to Consider when Choosing Your Side Hustle

July 17, 2023

I'm AMY!

Hello! I’m Amy and I love helping ambitious people turn their big ideas into sustainable and enriching side hustles. I'm also a blogger, podcaster, food photographer, niche strategist, and business coach.


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When it comes to choosing your side hustle, there are 6 key factors that you need to consider for true career fulfillment support.

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Mistakes When Choosing Your Side Hustle

When it comes to our career, earning income, and/or choosing a side hustle; there is so much more to consider than answering the question “what would we like to do?”. 

We often answer this question first when diving head-first into the pool of entrepreneurship. However, this often leads to short-lived businesses and non-sustaining pathways.

There is a misconception that doing what we love every day will make us feel like we aren’t working. This is not true and should not be our guiding light inside entrepreneurship.

There should be joy in your career. And career fulfillment should be a goal. However, you will be missing a huge piece of the puzzle when it comes to the meaning of fulfillment by only examining the concept of “what do I want to do”. 

Visit to download my mega spreadsheet that is going to give you 500 side hustle ideas along with additional information that we cover here like business type, saturation, income type, and so much more.

Supporting Factors For Career Fulfillment

In this episode, we are going to walk through 6 things to consider when choosing a side hustle. These items are key factors for exploring a career that truly supports your goals and needs. Thus, providing true career fulfillment.

Career fulfillment cannot be reached through interest alone. In order to truly sustain entrepreneurship and feel fulfilled within your career, your goals must be met.

6 Things to Consider when Choosing Your Side Hustle:

  • Your business model type (product vs. service based)
  • Location
  • How you want to earn income (passive vs active income)
  • Market saturation
  • How do you want to interact with your customer
  • Investment needed

Product vs. Service

The first thing you want to consider when choosing a side hustle is what type of business you want to start. A more specific question to ask yourself could be, do you want to start a product-based business or a service-based business?

With a product-based business, you will have a physical product or digital product that you create and sell for profit. There are multiple tiers of products you can sell and multiple types. You can sell anything as simple as a $5 digital product to a high-end thousands of dollars luxury product.

However, a key distinction with a product-based business is that you truly create or purchase a product in exchange for revenue. Not a service. 

A service based business provides non-tangible tasks in exchange for revenue. 

My advice for looking at product versus service based is to not get too hung up here. 

By looking at the next 5 things to consider when starting a side hustle, you may surprise yourself by what business model type you do end up pursuing. Don’t pigeonhole yourself out of the gate by declaring a product or service-based business. Instead, stay open-minded while you consider these next things.


The next thing to consider when choosing a side hustle is location. 

Ask yourself, do you want to travel? Do you want to perhaps travel long distances or around your city, on the go in order to collect income?

Or do you not want to leave your couch? Maybe you need a side hustle idea that you can work remotely, online from home. 

Or perhaps you need a side hustle that will take you out of the house to a location, like an office space, or meeting area, every week. 

Carefully examine your weeks, your schedule, and your availability for a side hustle. And be sure to get really honest with yourself here. What would truly serve you and what could you truly sustain?

Every business model is different and there are so many ways to side hustle traveling on the road, or just being on the go, from home, and on location. So many options for you to choose from!

Passive vs. Active Income

The next thing I want you to consider when starting your side hustle is how you want to earn money. Not necessarily what you want to sell, but how you want money to flow into the business. 

Do you want to earn active income or passive income? It’s important to know most business models have a little bit of both but lean primarily towards one of these methods. 

Passive income can be earned over and over again by having a digital product or service sit on a shelf and generate sales. However, this takes time, patience, momentum, and a lot of strategy to see success. 

Active income can be thought of as an exclusive sale. Meaning the product you are charging someone for, is only going to be sold once. Sure you can have multiple quantities but the sale per unit happens once and you need to generate new inventory after the sale. 

Pros to this, active income is typically easier to establish inside a business. And cons – you exchange time for money. 

When it comes to passive versus active income, I don’t think either option is bad. Again, side hustling and creating a part-time business is all about earning more in less time. And if you’re earning additional income, that’s a victory in itself!

However, there might be a right or wrong option for you. Consider the differences, consider the business models that pair with active versus passive income, and move from there.

Market Saturation

The next thing you want to consider when schoosing a side hustle is market saturation. This means, how many competitors do you have in your area (locally or virtually) doing something similar to what you’re doing? 

Now one thing about competition; it’s not a bad thing. It’s a good thing when we have competition because, with competition and market saturation, we have proof of concept. This means our side hustle business is valid and there is proof people want what we have to offer. 

However it’s the level of market saturation that you want to factor in when creating a side hustle. 

When you enter into a more highly saturated market, you will need to have tools such as marketing and sales strategy. You will need to position your business in a way that makes you stand out from the competitors and attracts your audience. 

Your audience will also have shorter attention spans because of this marketing saturation. So how will you truly grab their attention, speak their language and convert them to a client or customer?

With a lower saturated market, you will also need to have marketing tools inside your toolbox but in a way that’s a bit more upstream. 

Your market is less saturated so this may mean your audience doesn’t even know you exist or maybe needs more education around why they need you in their life. 

Your tools will need to consist of informative messaging, nurturing, and speaking to your audiences pain points to then invite them in further.

Customer Interaction

The next thing you need to consider when creating a side hustle is how you want to interact with your customer. 

Too many times we build a business and completely skip over or don’t even consider this question. 

Our businesses survive based on someone else’s buying decisions. Therefore, it’s pretty important to consider our relationship with them.

How do you truly want to interact with your customer? Do you want to see them or meet with them 1:1? Do you not really want to have a customer relationship?

Do you want to work with someone over a longer period of time? Or have a quick turnaround, working with a lot of different folks?

No answer is wrong here. If you are thinking, I don’t want to interact with people ever inside my business other than a customer support inbox; that’s okay. 

Or if you’re thinking that you want to truly grow a meaningful relationship with a customer through your business, that’s okay too. 

Forget about the business you want to start. And consider how you want to interact with the person swiping their credit card to support your business.

Investment Needed

The last thing I want you to consider when choosing your side hustle is the investment needed in order to get your business off the ground. What capital, aka how much money, are you looking to put down in order to start your business?

Side hustles can start with $0 down. Here are 27 side hustles you can start completely for free.

And side hustles can start with literally thousands of dollars. A good example of this is Twice The Ice, ice vending machines. This is a franchise you can start with a healthy upfront investment that leaves you working very few hours each week. 

Maybe this isn’t a question you answer right away. Perhaps you answer the first 5 questions to realize your dream side hustle idea and then you save money to start that idea. 

There are tons of options, all with various start up costs, for side hustles.


When it comes to starting a business, there will be a few “not too fun times” down the road. Therefore, we want to ensure we are building a business that meets our needs. And more importantly, we want to ensure we know what our needs actually are.

And remember, when thinking about these questions, the goal isn’t to deliver you to one side hustle idea perfect for you.

In fact, I don’t think there is just one business out there for you. Instead, I think you can surprise yourself by seeing just how many diverse options there are for you to pursue even after all of your boxes are checked. 

And I have something that can help you do just that. Visit to download my mega spreadsheet that is going to give you 500 side hustle ideas along with additional information that we covered here like business type, saturation, income type, and so much more.

With this spreadsheet, you can literally filter down to what you know you need from entrepreneurship to see all of the options that are available to you. And did I mention, there are 500 ideas in there?!

Do you have an amazing business that's just waiting for the right audience to come along? Let me help you find them! Download my Free Lead Magnet Workbook right here!

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I'm Amy Schmidt

I’m a blogger, podcaster, food photographer, niche strategist, and expert side hustle developer. Needless to say, I walk the walk when it comes to building and scaling non-traditional businesses! 

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