Saying goodbye to the traditional 9 to 5 work culture is becoming more commonplace each year with a rapidly growing gig economy. With the creation of smartphone technology, social media, and downloadable apps, seeking out gig work has never been easier for those with specialized skills and abilities.
Learning about the best gig economy apps of 2019 is a way to free yourself from the monotony of working full-time in an environment that is less than thriving or inspiring. With the right gig economy app, generate a passive or full-time income as you hone in on your prospective audience and jobs that are currently available near you.
What is a gig economy?
A gig economy refers to a workforce that is made up of freelancers and those who work independently from traditional workplace settings. Gig economy freelancers have the ability to take on clients directly while also utilizing a digital platform to generate sales and revenue.
In a gig economy, it is possible to set your own work hours while dictating your professional and personal schedule as you see fit. There are no limits to the number of hours you put into your gig jobs, eliminating traditional earnings caps that are set with standard salaried positions.
Common Types of Gig Economy Jobs
Gig economy jobs vary based on the individual’s personal and professional skills, areas of expertise, and preferred type of work. For freelancers, working as a consultant, designer, or programmer may be ideal depending on the amount of income they are looking to generate annually.
For those interested in savings, promotions, and rebates, there are gig apps that require menial tasks to generate massive discounts over time, optimal for those who provide for an entire household. Some of the most common types of gig economy jobs that can be found today with the advent of social media platforms and smartphones include:
- Business Consultant: Professionals and influencers alike have the opportunity to provide webinars, guides, and even their own time when working as a business consultant. Meet with clients who are in need of marketing, strategy, or even customer service advice while charging an hourly rate for your services.
- Freelancer: Work as a freelance writer, graphic designer, illustrator, programmer, or writer as a freelancer. Freelancers have the ability to work using a third-party platform or by building their own clientele independently.
- Driver: Drivers who work for apps such as Uber and Lyft can generate an income by picking up passengers who are in need of transportation in a local city or populated area.
- Host: Host guests using apps such as Airbnb to generate a passive income while traveling for work or spending time on vacation.
- Survey Taker: Take surveys to generate additional cash, savings, and gift cards to your favorite online and local retailers.
- Dog Walker: If you are a pet lover, consider working as a dog walker in your local community to spend time with animals while generating a side income.
- Get Paid to Shop: Some gig apps provide individuals with the opportunity to earn rewards, discounts, or gift cards while shopping at popular or sponsored retailers.
Benefits of a Gig Economy
A gig economy is not only beneficial for maximizing income potential while setting your own work schedule, but it also provides an array of advantages over traditional workplace environments. Work remotely while traveling or exploring new destinations when using gig apps as your main source of income.
Relax on the beach while completing digital tasks, surveys, or research questionnaires. Choose the number of hours you work each week without feeling the pressure of speaking to your boss or conforming to a set schedule. Set your own hourly rate when working as a freelancer or when outsourcing your time as a consultant. Work only with clients who are respectful of your rates and the type of work you are willing to provide.
Take advantage of working in a variety of industries based on your current skills and skills you are willing to learn. Dabble in dog walking, programming, or even social media marketing all within the same year when working in a gig economy.
Additionally, a gig economy can benefit employers in ways including:
- Saving on Office Space: Employers who hire freelancers and independent contractors are not responsible for providing additional office and workspace for their staff.
- Reducing Costs: Employers who hire independent contractors save their business money without traditional payroll taxes and health insurance requirements in place.
- Hire Remotely: When an employer hires a freelancer, they can do so regardless of the freelancer’s location. With more freedom to hire a qualified contractor from anywhere in the world, employers can find candidates with the right talents and skill set.
Comparing Gig Apps Before Seeking Work
Conducting a thorough comparison of gig apps is essential before choosing the app or platform that is right for you. Consider the type of work you are interested in as well as your skill set and professional abilities. Are you interested in working full time with your chosen gig, or are you searching for potential moonlighting and passive income opportunities?
How many hours are you willing to put into your side gig each week and how much are you hoping to earn? Is it important for you to get paid weekly, bi-weekly, or on-demand? Are you okay with consenting to a background check when using an app that requires one to qualify for jobs?
If you have a passion for traveling and want to pick up side jobs and gig work during your ventures, take a look at this Top 10 Side Hustles You Can Start Right Now on YouTube. Having a complete understanding of what each available and popular gig economy app has to offer is highly recommended before choosing the side gig that is right for you.
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Becoming an Airbnb Host
One way to put a gig app to work for you is to become an Airbnb host. If you currently own your home or have the legal right to sublet your apartment or condo, consider using the downloadable Airbnb host to rent a room or your entire property whenever you are out of town or on vacation.
Driving for Uber or Lyft is another way to take advantage of the gig economy, especially if you are the current owner of a newer and insured vehicle. With Uber and Lyft, help transport passengers who are in need of a ride to a nearby location in your town or city.
Earn more during rush hour with surge prices, or while picking up passengers during hectic weekends in heavily populated areas. Uber and Lyft are ideal for those who enjoy driving for work and connecting with customers while also being their own boss.
Both Uber and Lyft require drivers to hold a valid driver’s license while also owning an insured vehicle no older than 2010. Additionally, a complete background check may be required for new Uber or Lyft drivers upon submitting the online application. With Uber and Lyft, drivers are guaranteed a minimum hourly rate if it is not earned during a fare or via tip.
UberEats, DoorDash, PostMates, GrubHub
Another way to make money if you enjoy driving for a living is to deliver meals and fast food to nearby customers. UberEats, DoorDash, PostMates, and GrubHub have taken the gig economy by storm with their food delivery service in the form of a downloadable app. Driving for a food delivery service is similar to working for companies such as Uber and Lyft, requiring full applications, a valid driver’s license, and an insured vehicle.
When driving for a popular food delivery service, you are often guaranteed a minimum hourly rate, regardless of the number of fares you pick up and the amount you earn with each delivery. It is important to research and review the current hourly rate for each individual food delivery service in your area to ensure you choose a service near you with the highest revenue potential.
Do you enjoy grocery shopping for others or are you known for getting your own shopping done in record time? Consider working as a shopper and delivery driver for Instacart. Instacart pays shoppers and drivers a flat hourly rate while also providing you with the opportunity to generate tips or receive cash tips on delivering each order you receive.
As an Instacart employee, use the downloadable app to browse for nearby orders in your area. Once an order appears, review the store(s) which are on the order and choose whether or not you are willing to get the job done. Complete the grocery shopping for your customer and deliver the items right to their front door. Oftentimes, customers provide cash or digital service fee tips to shoppers as a thank you to help boost their income. As a shopper and delivery driver for services such as Instacart and PostMates, you have the opportunity to earn anywhere from $12 to more than $30 an hour depending on your customers and the number of orders you complete.
Do you have a love for animals and even have your own four-legged furry friends at home? Consider working as a dog walker using a gig app such as Rover. Rover allows both dog walkers and clients the ability to communicate with one another before finding a solution that is optimal for everyone involved. As a dog walker, build a digital portfolio using Rover once you have completed the signup and application process on the app.
Use current clients and testimonials to boost your visibility while attracting new clients who are in need of a dog walker in your area. Working as a dog walker is not only a great way to generate a side income, but it also provides you with plenty of time to bond with adorable dogs while getting enough daily exercise.
Do you enjoy helping others in your local community and want an opportunity to earn a bit of side cash with each task you help complete? Consider using GigWalk to connect with locals near you who require assistance with a task they are unable to complete on their own. Most small local gigs can earn you anywhere between $2 and more than $50, depending on the physical or mental labor involved in the task.
So, if you’re in the mood to help some neighbors but also want to earn cash while doing so, give GigWalk a shot.
Turo is one of the fastest growing gig economy apps, allowing users the chance to rent their vehicle(s) whenever it is not in use. Currently, Turo has more than 5 million users and it is steadily rising in popularity. With Turo, simply set your vehicle’s daily rate, current specifications, and dates of availability.
If you are interested in renting your vehicle out when it is not in use, Turo is easy to get started with and requires less than 10 minutes. One of the biggest perks of using Turo to rent your vehicle is the insurance provided by Turo itself if any physical damage is done to your vehicle while it is not in your possession. Have an extra car in your driveway? Start using Turo to generate a passive income on the side today.
TaskRabbit is one of the most popular gig apps available for those interested in independent contractor and work on-the-go. With TaskRabbit, search for local tasks that members in your community need help with completing. Some of the most common types of tasks that are posted using TaskRabbit include:
- Handy Work: Are you handy around the home and experienced with carpentry and woodwork? TaskRabbit may be a great spot to land suitable gigs.
- Housework: Some individuals near you may require help around the home due to age, hectic schedules, or even disabilities.
- Painting: Both interior and exterior painting jobs are easy to find with TaskRabbit.
- Building/Assembly: Help others build furniture or various structures they are interested in adding to their home if you are experienced and properly trained.
- Outdoor Work: Help locals and neighbors with their yard work as the seasons change. Help with gardening, raking, mowing, weed whacking, and even planting or picking growing food for those in need.
Putting Instagram to Work for You
While Instagram was originally launched as an app for teens and young adults interested in sharing photos of their experiences, it has since become a massive platform for online influencers to generate passive and full-time incomes. The Instagram economy is alive, well, and continuing to thrive.
With Instagram, popular users with thousands or millions of followers have the opportunity to use sponsored posts as a way to generate an income. Once a user builds an online following, companies, and marketers from popular brands reach out to connect with digital influencers, requesting promotion of their products or services. An Instagram user with millions of followers can then charge thousands of dollars for each post that is shared, depending on the media format and the estimated users the post is likely to reach.
Amassing an attractive following overnight is not always easy for those on Instagram, and often requires dedication and commitment to delivering high-quality photos, entertaining videos, or memorable stories to their dedicated fans on a regular basis. If you are thinking of becoming an online influencer via Instagram, consider your current skills, abilities, and any niche markets you would like to hone in and focus on. When you have a passion for sharing tips, tutorials, or information on subjects that you are excited to cover, it is much easier to maintain authenticity as you grow your following and influence online, ultimately resulting in more sponsorship opportunities.
There are hundreds of survey apps for both iOS and Android smartphones, paying users for their time spent on completing digital surveys. Survey applications pay anywhere from $.25 to more than $2.00 a piece, depending on the survey provider, the length of the survey, and the topic the survey covers. Using a survey app to generate a passive income is a great way to generate money on the side while watching your favorite television show or enjoying downtime.
There are also research survey apps available for colleges and various think tanks that pay users anywhere from $5.00 to more than $50.00 per survey, depending on the user’s qualifications and experience. Before choosing a survey app that is right for you, research the app itself to determine its legitimacy, payout success rate, and typical payout times.
What to Review Before Submitting Your Gig Work Applications
Before choosing the right app for the type of gig work you are seeking, read comprehensive comparison charts to determine which solution is best.
Some hosting apps may offer higher referral bonuses, optimal for those who are highly connected and have a wider influence. Other dog-walking apps may pay dog walkers more than others. Some of the driving apps may pay a higher base hourly rate for those who live in rural areas. Take the time to compare each type of gig economy app you are interested in using to generate a passive or full-time income before choosing a platform that is ideal for you and your preferred lifestyle.
It is also important to read the terms, conditions, and any rules that have been set in place from each third-party gig platform or app you register on. Some gigs may require you to pay a certain percentage of your earnings or a service fee each time you cash out or request a deposit of your earnings.
Read and review customer and user testimonials for each individual app you are interested in using before downloading and installing it on your smartphone. It is also advisable to search for testimonials and reviews using a third-party website or online platform for non-biased results. Reviews and testimonials provide valuable insight into the inner workings of a company and how they treat their employees and independent contractors. Steer clear of apps with an overwhelming number of negative reviews, especially if they often stem from those who are attempting to generate an income from the app as a freelancer or independent contractor.
Use these TIPS to land a freelance gig work!!
Landing freelance gig work is not always easy, but it can become remarkably simple with an updated and relevant portfolio along with the right apps on-demand. Use the following tips to help with increasing your chances of landing the preferred freelance work you are most interested in:
- Launch Your Own Website: If you are seeking a gig app that allows you the opportunity to connect directly with individual clients, build your own portfolio with an official website or blog. Having a digital portfolio of your past work and clients can drastically increase your chances of landing new work.
- Streamline Social Media Usernames: If you use the same username across all of your gig work applications, do the same with your social media platforms. Streamlining your username provides potential customers the option of connecting with you on any platform with ease.
- Research Each App Company: Research and compare app companies that advertise money in exchange for work or services completed. It is imperative to read the reviews and testimonials from both customers as well as freelancers or independent contractors who have used the app in the past. Search for the most recent reviews to learn how the app is currently operating and the average pay for tasks or hourly work before making your decision.
- Ask for Reviews: Any time you have an extremely satisfied client, request a review or testimonial from them. Building your portfolio is extremely challenging if you do not have any verifiable client reviews or testimonials for future prospective customers. With testimonials and reviews, show new clients and application reviewers your skills, abilities, and qualifications while also gaining their trust.
- Try New Things: Not all of the best gig economy apps are the same. While some provide you with an opportunity to earn money by completing surveys, others connect you with local passengers or clients who are in need of a service you can provide. Try venturing out into a new line of work if you are interested in switching things up in your everyday life when you join the gig economy.
What is required to succeed in gig economy jobs?
Unfortunately, it is not always easy to succeed in a gig economy, especially if you work best in a structured and monitored working environment. As a freelancer or an independent contractor, you instantly become responsible for finding clients and work to take on in order to generate a sustainable income each month. When you choose to work in a gig economy, it is important to keep these characteristics in mind at all times to maximize your chances of achieving success:
- Discipline: Discipline is one of the most important elements of ensuring success in a gig economy. Without the ability to remain disciplined, finding new gigs and prospective clients becomes increasingly challenging, leading to a quick loss of potential income.
- Positive Outlook and Attitude: Maintaining a positive outlook and attitude is essential when working in the gig economy. As a freelancer, you are likely to experience droughts of work based on the industry you choose to pursue. Maintaining a positive outlook is necessary to bounce back from tough times as you continue to build your current clientele.
- Open-Mindedness: Having an open mind is extremely helpful when you are looking to pursue a career in the gig economy, even if you are doing so for a passive income. Keeping an open mind helps to take on gigs that are less than optimal to help build your portfolio when you are first starting out on your own. While it is not always easy to build an attractive and robust freelance portfolio, it is often worth it for those who are interested in pursuing the lifestyle full-time with enough experience.
- Social Skills: Social skills and customer service goes a long way when building your clientele as a freelancer or an independent contractor. Knowing how to convey the services you provide while also having the ability to read and interpret the needs of your prospective clients can drastically increase your chances of landing new business. When you have a knack for communicating with others or striking up conversations without issues, working in the gig economy may be a way to put your social skills to use.
Whether you are interested in saving money with coupons and digital promotions or if you have a design, programming, and writing skills to put to use, finding work has never been easier in the current gig economy. By taking the time to review and compare popular gig economy apps of 2019, gain valuable insight into current trends, positions, and freelance work available for you. With the right gig app, maintain a growing list of clientele and new tasks and jobs to complete for income each day.
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