Is it essential for freelance web designers to have a side hustle?

Is it imperative for freelance web designers to pursue additional income streams?

Elevating your freelance web designers career to the next level presents its challenges. Transitioning from scraping by to achieving financial comfort requires a blend of hard work and astute planning.

Why is this combination essential for success? Well, even when you’re inundated with projects, there’s no guarantee of increased revenue. Moreover, constant busyness is unsustainable and heightens the risk of burnout rather than propelling you to the summit.

Strategic planning is paramount. Proactively evaluate your career trajectory to chart the most viable path upward. Your desired level of success and your unique skill set both factor into the equation.

Many web designers, myself included, have explored side hustles to augment their earnings. For some, like myself, writing has proven fruitful, while others may opt for selling web-related products or engaging in occasional subcontracting work. Opportunities abound for those with talent and technical acumen.

However, the challenge lies in preventing side hustles from becoming overwhelming, especially in today’s competitive market where they often feel obligatory.

Hence, let’s delve into the merits, drawbacks, and complexities of branching out beyond web design. Is a side hustle a necessity? The exploration that follows might offer insights to help you reach a conclusion.

Why Isn’t Always Enough

Collaborating with clients can be fulfilling and lucrative, yet not every freelancer can attain such success.

Pragmatically speaking, securing high-paying projects often involves competing against well-established agencies with greater resources and influence. Consequently, solo freelancers may encounter reluctance from prominent clients.

For those unable to land top-tier assignments, the alternative frequently involves working with smaller and mid-sized clients, which, while perfectly acceptable, might constrain growth potential.

Attempting to increase earnings through higher project volume or elevated pricing seems logical initially. However, there comes a juncture where the benefits plateau.

Another avenue is to enlist assistance, either from another freelancer or a traditional employee, enabling a higher workload. Nonetheless, this approach demands a level of investment beyond the means of some.

Hence, many of us explore alternative avenues for a productivity boost.

The Benefits of a Side Hustle

Engaging in a side hustle comes with numerous advantages. Primarily, it presents an opportunity to boost your income, potentially elevating you to a higher financial bracket.

The additional earnings can significantly impact your life by assisting in bill payments or facilitating savings accumulation.

Moreover, a side hustle injects variety into your daily tasks, preventing monotony from setting in. For instance, in my experience, writing has served as a refreshing outlet for creativity, alleviating the pressures and frustrations often associated with project work. It acts as a mental reset while contributing a supplementary income stream.

Although not all side hustles offer the same sense of tranquility, they do provide a departure from your usual routine and may even enable you to pursue your passions.

There’s a diverse array of side hustles out there, ranging from independent ventures like marketing a product to working for others. The initial hurdle lies in determining what suits you best. Sometimes, your primary job can naturally segue into a side gig.

For instance, if you excel in coding, you could explore developing a WordPress plugin. Alternatively, if troubleshooting is your forte, a part-time support role might be ideal.

But what if these avenues don’t align with your skills or interests? In that case, delve into what brings you genuine happiness. There could be an opportunity to turn your passion into profit.

Creating content around a subject you love could be lucrative. Generating some ad revenue from a blog or podcast might prove beneficial.

The key is to reflect on your desires and goals. Then, actively seek out opportunities that can help you achieve them.

is it essential for freelance web designers to have a side hustle

While side hustles offer various benefits, they also come with their fair share of drawbacks. It’s essential to acknowledge these potential downsides before diving in.

For instance, balancing a side hustle alongside a full-time job or other commitments can be challenging. It may lead to burnout or strain on personal relationships if not managed properly.

Moreover, there could be financial risks involved, especially if you’re investing resources into your side venture without guaranteed returns. Additionally, navigating tax implications and legal obligations can add complexity to the equation.

Furthermore, there’s the possibility of spreading yourself too thin, impacting your overall productivity and well-being.

Recognizing these drawbacks upfront allows for better preparation and mitigating strategies to ensure a more balanced and sustainable approach to side hustling.

There Can Be Drawbacks, Too


None of this is to say that side hustles are perfect. You could get stuck in an unfulfilling situation. Or end up with a commitment you can’t handle.

In some cases, there may be a negative impact on your web design business. Anything that harms your ability to do your “day job” may not be worthwhile.

That leads us to the management portion of things. The ability to manage your time is crucial. You’ll need this skill to complete tasks.

Those launching a new product or service will carry a lot of responsibility. You may be doubling the amount of business-related tasks you’re currently doing. Client management, invoicing, and support commitments will all increase.

There’s also a financial reality to consider. You may not start with the desired compensation. It may take years to reach a comfort level. Are you willing to be patient?

Tips for Making the Most of Your Side Hustle

The ideal side hustle will be different for everyone. Still, there are common threads about finding and managing them.

Here are a few tips for getting the most out of the experience:

Start Small and Simple

When starting a side hustle, keep things simple. Look for opportunities that require minimal commitment. In some cases, you may be able to work on a temporary trial basis.

It’s a chance to ease into what you’re doing. Meanwhile, you’ll lessen the risk of becoming overwhelmed. That betters your chances of long-term success.

You can always increase your workload in the future. But it’s best to wait until you’ve found a comfort level.

Define What Success Means to You

Before signing up for a side hustle, define your expectations. That creates a goal to work toward. And you’ll be able to ensure you’re on the right path.

Consider both your desired time commitment and level of compensation. Again, it’s OK to start small in these areas. But have an ultimate goal in mind.

Perhaps you want to put away a bit of money each month. Or you want enough to pay for a vacation. It’s all about finding what makes you happy.

Think about what it will take to get there. Then, you can develop a strategy to achieve it.

Think about the Long Term Impact

A side hustle isn’t just about the here and now. There can be long-term consequences as well. You’ll want to think about them beforehand.

For example, how might it impact your web design business? Could it impede your ability to book new projects? Could it even take over as your primary gig?

There are a myriad of ways this could affect you. Therefore, ask yourself these questions. Consider the benefits and drawbacks of what a side hustle means.

Of course, none of us can predict the future. Sometimes, you’ll need to feel your way through situations as they arise.

You can think about potential scenarios, though. Doing so will help you prepare for them.

Side Hustles May Be the New Normal for Freelancers

Sustaining a full-time freelance lifestyle isn’t easy. There are only so many projects available. Recruiting new clients takes precious time. That makes moving up even more difficult.

That’s what makes a side hustle an attractive option. It’s a chance to pick up recurring revenue. Gaining extra income you can count on is a difference-maker for many of us.

We can use them to make ends meet – and accomplish other goals we’re working toward. The right opportunity can play an important role.

Is a side hustle right for you? Think about where you are in your journey – and where you want to be. It might be the answer you’ve been looking for.