The Highest Earning Side Hustles for a Single Day of Work

The side hustle has become a common fact of life in recent years. Economic pressures, shorter tenures and greater workplace flexibility have driven people with regular jobs to earn extra money on the side. And online networks have made it all possible.

You can sign up to a network like Fiverr or PeoplePerHour, browse opportunities, get hired and get paid in just a few hours. However, to do so reliably and with a decent level of compensation usually requires longer-term dedication to the pursuit.

Gig work like this used to be “a means of economic survival,” but since the pandemic, professionals are increasingly using these assignments to bolster their main income. “These workers are higher up the job value chain,” Meredith Meyer Grelli, Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business, told the BBC. “[T]hey can now figure out how to combine roles and side projects in their lives as a way of maximizing income against their skills.”

If you have an underused skill or area of expertise and a few hours a week to spare, a side hustle can help shore up your finances and even improve your performance in your main job. But side hustling requires strategy and commitment.

To help you focus on the most efficient opportunities to pursue, the team here at NetCredit has trawled through thousands of publicly available job ads on Fiverr to find the single-day gigs that pay the most.

Key Findings

  • The highest-earning side hustle in the world is Mobile App Developer in Ukraine, which pays $471.11 for a day’s work.
  • The best-paid side hustle in the U.S. is Marketing Strategy, which pays $178.08/day.
  • The best-paid side hustle in the U.K. is Website Designer ($220.15/day).
  • The highest-earning AI side hustle in the U.S. is making AI Spokespersons Videos ($131.40/day).

The Top Paying Side Hustle In Every Country

Around the world, it is the design and development of digital spaces that pays the most on a daily basis.

Website Designer is the highest-paid job in 15 of the 28 countries, with a side hustle that pays over $100/day. Mobile App Developer is top in seven more of these three-figure markets, and other forms of graphic design make up the bulk of the remainder. Creativity also reigns beyond this top 28, with video creators and logo designers joining the map.

World map showing the highest paying side hustles in each country

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Website design is an appealing side hustle because it requires little space and poses few upfront costs. In addition to flexing your creative muscles, you will benefit from the rewards of a job well done as your reputation for good work spreads, making it easier to find gigs in the future.

In the UK, a website designer can earn an average of $220.15/day for a quick turnaround job. Project-based side hustlers contribute around 73% of the £140-145 billion economic output of highly skilled freelancers in the UK — far more than those who “repeatedly perform the same task or gig for a client,” according to the London School of Economics.

Design, Marketing and Writing Roles Among Best Paid U.S. Side Hustles

In the U.S., design roles account for half the 20 highest-earning side hustles for a single day’s work. These assignments range across digital, industrial and graphic design. The highest rate among design gigs is $163.62 for Presentation Design. For the most part, this involves creating stunning PowerPoint-type presentations. Digital marketing is the second most lucrative sector, with three roles making the top 20.


List of the 20 highest paid side hustles in the U.S. for a single day of work

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Marketing Strategy is the best-paid side hustle overall, offering an average of $178.08 per day. An effective digital marketing strategist has experience, networks and specialist knowledge that a small business might not have internally. A company that reaches out to a marketing expert expects to make a profit on its investment in digital marketing, and this can be factored into the fee. While it may be desirable to study at college to become a highly paid marketing strategist, you can also attain competitive skill levels by learning at work or studying online at home.

Writing and Editing: LinkedIn Profiles Prove Most Profitable

Writing may leap to mind as a quick and easy way to make a buck. After all, we all learn to write at school, and many freelance gigs can be completed from the comfort of your armchair. However, writing to a high standard requires skill and practice. And as the chart below shows, there are different types of writing gigs, with widely varying rates of pay. While you may find a low-paying role with relative ease, you will need to build an impressive portfolio and a network of connections to climb past the competition to more worthwhile assignments.

Ranking of the best paying writing and editing side hustles

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Naturally, each mode of writing has its own rules. The best-paid of all is the LinkedIn Profile writer. Writing a profile requires research into your client’s industry and their aims, if you are to optimize your text for potential employers.

Today’s professional LinkedIn profile requires a bit more care: it is a selling document that should express your client’s skills, experience and personality while hitting the points that recruiters are looking for. It should stand up to being quickly scanned (potentially by an AI recruitment tool) at the longlisting stage while remaining personable and readable for when it gets closer attention.

Design: Presentations and Websites Offer High Earnings

Design remains the most lucrative of side hustle categories in our study. Even as the rise of AI makes work in the industry more precarious, hirers are figuring out that good design involves a range of factors that go beyond putting digital ink on the screen. Good taste, an organic response to context (including the broader zeitgeist), passion and an ingrained working knowledge of the history and principles of the form keep freelance designers head and shoulders above a regular employee with access to DALL·E 2.

Ranking of the best paying design side hustles

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We found no AI design or visuals jobs with a day rate over $100. But increasingly, designers will use AI as an assistant or be drafted in to advise on AI-oriented design jobs. For now, Presentation Design and Website Design are two roles that offer over $162/day on Fiverr. These are roles that involve storytelling, audience awareness and branding. Designers in these fields must have a good sense of creating work that is both impactful and accessible.

Artificial Intelligence (AI): AI Spokesperson Videos Earn Twice As Much

“As an advocate for human talent, allow me to assure you that we come in peace,” wrote Micha Kaufman in an “open letter to AI” in January 2023. “You are a unique and powerful tool, capable of extraordinary feats. However, after reviewing some of your work, I believe it could benefit from a human touch to avoid coming across as too, ahem… robotic.”

The letter was printed in the New York Times, Don Draper-style. It was an act of marketing intended to capitalize on the new economic opportunities offered by artificial intelligence. It put a humorous spin on the controversial announcement that Fiverr’s marketplace would encourage AI-oriented assignments.

Ranking of the best paying AI side hustles

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So far, AI assignments are not lucrative on Fiverr, at least for those with a one-day turnaround. AI Spokespersons Videos lead the way at $131.40, but that’s more than twice the fee of any other AI-oriented role.

Several services allow users to create avatar-fronted announcements or how-to videos. However, this in itself takes skill and work, particularly to create a video that does not look overly generic. Since these videos may be of great marketing value to those who commission them, recruiters pay reasonable rates for freelancers to make them on their behalf. However, since these services often require a subscription, the employer must clarify who pays the fees.

Digital Marketing: Strategy and App Marketing Among Top Earners

Three categories of work stand out as the highest-paid assignments in digital marketing: Marketing Strategy, Mobile App Marketing and Social Media Marketing. Of these, Marketing Strategy is by far the highest earner (see Design, Marketing and Writing Roles Among Best Paid U.S. Side Hustles above). Still, the other two also offer an average daily rate of over $100.

Ranking of the best paying digital marketing side hustles

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While mobile app marketing and social media marketing have similar names, they are quite different in nature. Social media marketing involves using social media platforms to build your client’s brand and drive website traffic and sales.

But mobile app marketing is about marketing an app itself, largely through knowledgeable use of app store optimization, but also across the client’s website, social media and the press. Thus, it is the marketing of a very specific product that is available, for the most part, on a very specific platform. Since your client’s app will be competing with well over a million others, an experienced mobile app marketer’s expertise is of great value.

Business: Pitch Decks Bring in the Bucks

Over five million new business applications are filed every year, and there are 33.2 million small businesses in the U.S. Naturally, not all of them can afford to maintain a full staff of marketing and accounting professionals. Along with one-off consultancies, piecework in these categories offers the greatest compensation to the freelancers who are drafted in.

Ranking of the best paying business side hustles

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Indeed, the biggest paying assignment, by a significant margin, often involves new companies pitching for investors. Pitch Decks are presentations for prospective investors, guiding them through a company’s unique offer, market potential and vision. These are often arranged as PowerPoint or Apple Keynote presentations and must be striking without overwhelming.

The freelancer will work with the hiring company to produce the cards but may also be expected to provide a level of advice or guidance on the structure of the pitch itself. For this reason, it is essential that the freelancer is clear from the start about what they offer and where their expertise lies; it stands to reason that the more expertise you can offer in addition to your design skills, the more you can expect to charge.

Data Science and Analytics: Dashboard Drivers Demand Highest Rates

Big data is a big mystery to many professionals, so bringing in a freelancer can help explain the lay of the land. “Often, if they have some data and they think they can do something interesting or of value with it — rather than hiring a data scientist — it makes more sense to bring in someone for a few weeks or a month to explore the data, understand the business challenges and opportunities and what’s feasible,” explains Matt Johnson, former COO of data science consultancy Data Mettle.

Ranking of the best paying data and analytics side hustles

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We found that Dashboards are the highest-paid area of data analysis. A dashboard is a digital interface arranged like a car dashboard, visualizing valuable data and processing it in real-time. A side hustler may work on the project for a day or more, either designing a data dashboard from scratch or entering and processing data on an existing system. This work earns an average of $120.86 per day, some 31% more than a gig in Machine Learning.

6 Tips to Grow Your Side Hustle into a Successful Business

Figures like those in our study make it tempting to jump right into freelancing, but doing so without strategy and commitment will likely end up as more trouble than it is worth. To earn a worthwhile income with a side hustle, it is preferable to treat it as a small business, complete with a business plan, accounting and marketing strategy. Here are six tips on how to get started.

  1. Feedback, significance and skill variety. Harvard Business Review recommends choosing a side hustle that provides these three values. Doing freelance work in addition to your main job can be draining — but finding one that complements your core career and personal needs can be enriching.
  2. Build slowly. While it is advisable to take your side hustle seriously from the beginning, in practical terms, it is more manageable and less intimidating to grow incrementally.
  3. Grow your network. Freelancing platforms make it seem like finding good work will be automatic, but the reality is that the majority of your work may come through word of mouth or from repeat clients.
  4. Keep it official. Registering your business and keeping your accounts helps avoid nasty surprises later. It will also make you look and feel more professional in the eyes of your clients.
  5. Manage your time. Schedule your work so that you make the best use of your energy, and remember to ringfence time for rest and relaxation.
  6. Automate and delegate. Identify repetitive areas of your work that you can automate using social media scheduling software and AI tools. And if your income allows, consider hiring freelancers to complete tasks you don’t have the time or skillset for.

Some of these tips come from our infographic guide to growing your side hustle as a business — do check it out for more tips and greater details.


To determine the highest-earning side hustles for a single day of work, we analyzed publicly available data on freelance ad rates from Fiverr. Various side hustles were ranked based on the average base price for all services advertised within a specific category with express 24-hour delivery time. Only ads from sellers that were level 1, level 2 or top-rated were considered. Categories with fewer than eight ads and countries with fewer than five categories of service were excluded from our analysis.

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