Parents/mums have lots of side hustle ideas they can pursue online or as a work from home business.
The best side hustles for mums are the ones which create freedom.
A side hustle provides value, helps solve a problem to the mass and is profitable. How does a busy mum choose a side hustle?
Start with a passion. Side hustles start with a passion, almost all.
Fill in a gap. What is the market missing? For example, before I started blogging about Kenya, I saw the lack of information about Kenya from the landscapes down to the movies. I then realised I loved talking about money online a lot.
Keep on learning. You won’t start a successful side-hustle. Successful and success side hustles get born through learning, changing and relearning. Ever heard of people who had to start afresh in their businesses? I feel the same with this blog.
Side hustles are fun and must be fun. A tedious side-hustle which you started because someone told you or saw someone doing isn’t fun at all.
READ MORE: How to Start a Side Hustle Empire in Kenya
1. Write for blogs
Since becoming serious about writing on my blog consistently in October 2020, I earned two and a half Euros on Google Ads. It was the proudest moment of my entire writing life.
I always wondered how famous blogs made millions. Ensure Start a blog about anything you love, and it could be personal finance, cooking, parenting, dating as a single mum, dating as a lesbian mum.
A blog needs a niche, I discovered. You need to talk that one topic until you exhaust every issue of it under the sun.
Choose a topic you like. I love making money online for a long time; I felt I wasn’t a guru to talk about it or how I made money online.
The other daunting task about a blog is blogging consistently and deciding on what to blog and how to design a website.
I focus on the content before the design.
Before beginning a blog in 2020, write at least 40 or 100 blog posts about the topic you want to blog on. You want to start with a ready-made blog. If you start by publishing a post a day, maintain that.
READ MORE: Step by Step Guide of Starting a Blog That Pays in Kenya
In this article, you’re going to learn how to choose a domain name for your blog, why naming a blog is crucial.
How to choose themes from theme stores
Domain and reviewing domains for businesses
What blog niches are trending
Writing excellent and viral content.
Why you need to write headlines like Vogue or magazines
I started freelance writing in 2011 or that’s when I decided I’d call myself a freelance writer.
It was so heart wrenching when no job came my way. In 2012, I got a job as a virtual assistant.
I had told one of my friends that I worked online, and he got intrigued.
A few weeks later, he says, a friend of mine is beginning a company and would need an online secretary, is this something you can do?
At that point, in 2012, I hadn’t heard of online secretary, so I declined.
3. Rent out your home with Airbnb
I rented my home with Airbnb in 2017 and loved it. It was a dream come true for me to work in the hospitality industry.
I learnt a few things as an Airbnb host, Airbnb is the hospitality industry. Remember to keep customer excellence in mind. You want to be the best host in your area.
When I started on Airbnb hosts didn’t think Mtwapa, Mombasa as a lucrative area. I saw a gap.
I priced so low for excellent services and what I got was an influx of guests. I never increased the prices the lessons I learnt helped me begin a business outside of Airbnb which earns me a million.
People asked me how my Airbnb business went/is going during the pandemic, when I say, never been better, they wonder how.
Simple, people wanted to be away from their homes during the covid, while homeowners locked their doors, I followed Airbnb guidelines on cleaning and hosting.
Mind you, I don’t use Airbnb any more but I love Airbnb.
To succeed as an Airbnb, I discovered you must know your niche. What’s that area of expertise you want to share with travellers.
I love gay/lesbian travellers.
I connect with gay/lesbian travellers who believe Kenya is homophobic and people ignorant about gay/lesbian travellers.
I love hearing stories from around the world of gay travellers.
Many hosts don’t think of choosing a niche, what’s the traveller you want to cater for? And why? And how are you going to market to them?
READ MORE: How I Make $10K/1M Shillings a Month With Airbnb in Kenya and You Can Too
In this article, I shared everything there’s to know about Airbnb and why Airbnb is a profitable business for mums, stay at home mums or parents. I also shared my story of why I got started on Airbnb.
I share lots of tips for taking photos of your Airbnb with your smartphone and how to choose an Airbnb niche.
I added how to market your Airbnb using video marketing and social media marketing.
I tested my Airbnb idea on Facebook and it was the most shared post on my profile.
You can buy the Airbnb guide book, which is more than a guidebook to help you set up your Airbnb in Kenya or anywhere in the world.
4. Rent out anything
I ask myself, and I’m a DIYer by choice, what if I start a website to rent out tools? I wish there was a website in Kenya for renting out things one wants for a while.
I scoured around and found no renting websites. Set up a website where people rent a particular item from you.
I don’t know how renting websites work though. I’ll research and blog about it here.
There are some lucrative consulting niches like the finance consulting niche, business and entrepreneurship, marketing and sales.
What do you know about so much and know that people are willing to pay for, including businesses?
Set up a consulting firm service. See what Gina did with public relations?
READ MORE: Most Popular Consulting Industries for Kenyans
6. Sell unwanted stuff lying around your house.
When I was moving houses in 2019, Yes, we travel a lot. I decided to sell everything.
I never realised people bought old furniture or what I considered useless was valuable to someone else.
What are those useless things lying around your house that could make you money?
I sold beds, dining table a study table and second-hand electronics like a blender, an electric burner a small one.
READ MORE: How I Made 50,000Shillings on a Friday Morning Selling Unwanted Stuff
7. Rent out your car
For a long time, I thought cars were a burdensome and unnecessary inconvenience.
Try and live in remote areas as I do with no car on a lazy day.
Anyway, I decided what and how will I turn my car into a profitable business venture when I get one?
Rent your car to your Airbnb guests, use your car for grocery/food delivery or conduct a car boot sale.
READ MORE: How to Make Profits With You Car in Kenya
8. Start a travel agency from home
After Airbnb, I decided to start a non-registered travel agency from the comfort of my home.
I’d create experiences, and Airbnb concept I borrowed to help make memorable moments for my guests. And it paid off.
Due to covid, I put on hold registering the travel company.
I decided to create content surrounding travel; the travel niche isn’t well explored in the nation.
Start a travel blog in Kenya talking about areas Kenyan travel bloggers and blogs don’t touch on.
We need to market the whole country and not over popularised some parts.
READ MORE: How to Start a Paying Travelling Blog in Kenya
How to Start a Travel Agency From Home in Kenya
9. Become a freelance writer for parent blogs or another niche you love
Yes, I love parenting blogs and the only parenting blogs I visited and followed religiously were parent.com and baby.com when I was pregnant.
As a mum, you know what the parenting niche is missing, we’re accustomed to reading the western media on parenting.
How about creating a parenting blog centred on parenting an African child in the digital world, among other topics?
These days, we don’t spank our child because of the western media influence, talk about parenting now and when you grew up.
There’s a lot to talk about in a parenting blog.
Blogs make money by recommending products or affiliate marketing, creating products and services, influencer marketing when your blog traffic explodes.
I brag that if I were to develop a parenting blog, it’d bring traffic in a day, there’s a lot to say as a parent.
10. Sell printables on Etsy or your website
I love printables, and in 2018 I went crazy creating printables. I bought a clipart after clipart.
I created planners, greeting cards, valentine cards and anything else I felt. Before selling your printables on Etsy, know and learn how to sell on Etsy.
That’s the recommendation I’ll give. Learn how to write product descriptions like a champ, conduct keyword research to determine what buyers want.
Keyword researching is about feeding and filling in the market gap.
READ MORE: How to Begin Selling on Etsy in Kenya: Complete Guide
How to Start a Digital Download Business in Kenya
11. Become a social media manager
I talk about social media managing in every side hustle topic. Because social media is an easy and straightforward side business – you’re on social media half the day.
Instead of wasting time looking through profiles that defeat you daily, help drive traffic and leads for businesses and influencers.
You have to learn about a social media platform at a time example, learn all there is to Facebook then ask yourself, what role do I play as a social media manager.
Do I help drive traffic to businesses or bring in sales? The more definite your role is as a social manager, the handsome the pay.
READ MORE: How Do I Make 250k Shillings as a Social Media Manager in Kenya?
12. Amazon FBA
Amazon helps you fulfils your orders when you send goods to their warehouse. That’s the easiest explanation I can give.
You can earn money with Amazon if your product is a hot-selling or trending product.
Learn more about Amazon FBA from The Selling Family and Amazon Selling Machine Courses. You need to invest an upfront sum of 50k shillings.
LEARN: How FBA Works in Kenya
13. Start a niche e-commerce store
Lots of Kenyans want to begin online businesses but don’t know where to begin.
An e-commerce store offers you the opportunity of selling what customers are looking for.
Don’t gear to be the next Jumia or Amazon, start from a niche. A niche is selling kitchen products, that’s a general niche.
Then asking what under kitchen products would I sell? You have to know what niches sell the most in e-commerce.
READ MORE: Hot Selling Products Online
Trending and Evergreen Products to Sell Online
14. Private labelling
Private labelling is a branch of dropshipping where you source products from Alibaba, low selling products, then brand them as if they were yours.
A tip: source products from suppliers who are in business for a long time. You don’t want to sell a hot product in a month then be out of business/product the next.
READ MORE: How Private Labelling Works, Sourcing products from Alibaba and Branding Them
I love proofreading, wish it was my only job. When going through most of my blog posts, no matter how neat some may sound, I cringe.
I read lots of books a week, sie hustle, passive income books, investing, making money on Amazon and cringe so much – the worst part these books are best-sellers, and they emphasise on writing error-free ebooks!
I don’t do proofreading for business though, so if you love the English language and want to begin a proofreading business, follow the blog, proofread anywhere by Caitlin Pyle.
And if you want a proofreading job, email me, I’m looking for an editor for my books and blog. GERTRUDE DOT AKINYI AT GMAIL DOT COM
READ MORE: How to Begin a Proofreading Business in Kenya
16. Get into network marketing
I have heard nightmare stories about network marketing, but I have heard success stories too.
Before selling products as a network marketer, identify a niche/an industry you love.
Don’t follow other women in Rodan and Fields just because or Forever Living, do you believe in Forever Living Products? A successful network marketer loves the products they sell.
READ MORE: Getting Into Network Marketing in Kenya, All YOU Need to Know
17. Cook for others on YouTube or as a home chef
I love baking pizza. Turn your love for food into a side hustle. Perfect that food you love by shooting videos for YouTube.
Amass a following then offer cookbooks or cook shows where you host others into your home.
If you want to be a home chef, follow Gordon Ramsay’s Masterclass 1 and 2 on Masterclass. I love where he talks about what you need as a cook: fire, a good cooking pot, everything else is unnecessary noise.
READ MORE: How to Cook for a Living in Kenya
18. Start a cleaning or washing business
Who doesn’t love a clean home? There are lots of cleaning services in Kenya in 2020, don’t fret.
Look around your neighbourhood, what’s not available? Come up with a plan, do a few tests for subsidised fees for your neighbours.
After perfecting your services, sell products to help you earn more.
A lot of cleaning companies rely on store-bought cleaning supplies; you could make or dropship with Aliexpress or Alibaba or any other medium.
READ MORE: How to Begin a Cleaning Supply Business in Kenya
How to Begin a Unique Cleaning Business in Kenya
Farming is one of the many ways I use to make money for myself as a Kenyan woman.
I love getting dirty, literally. Now, wherever you live you can begin farming from there.
I hear women saying they cannot start farming because they live in a rented house.
I lived in a rented house where I planted vegetables, spinach, tomatoes and maize and kales.
I’d sell the kales and spinach to others, and it was a year-round venture.
The property owner allowed us to farm within his compound! Now, do you have wood, can you get wood? Can you get soil? Begin a mushroom farm or a fish farm within your house.
Start small then keep growing or learning before you know it; you will be earning, millions of dollars a year or per month, from a rented house!
READ MORE: How to Start a Mushroom Farm in Your House in Kenya
How to Farm in Your House in Kenya
I saw a baking friend turn his business into a million-shilling business in three months in Mtwapa!
Baking goods that sell include cookies, cakes, bread (all kinds of bread) including pizza.
Perfect one baked good from your house, what people love to buy in Kenya like Pizza or home-made bread.
Ensure your packaging stands out; I, I learnt from my friend. And have excellent customer service and experience in your business.
Also, baked goods which you love eating, you must be your first customer. I ‘baked’ mandazis for a living in 2012 and earned a lot of money from it.
READ MORE: How a Mandazi Business Made Me Rich in Kenya
How to Begin a Pizza Business from Home in Kenya
21. Crochet / knit
I taught myself how to crochet in 2014, I learnt knitting from my mum when I was a kid, so I knitted school sweaters with her help.
We lived in Nanyuki and the cold weather fro the slopes of the mountain made the cardigans sold at the shops seem like silk shawls.
Now, I wanted to make market bags for sale to Nakumatt supermarket. I crocheted a few market bags which I sold.
A crochet business needs patience and lots of learning. I followed on Bag-o-day crochet and Bob Wilson on Youtube, using their free tutorials.
Don’t sell anyone’s patterns, that’s theft and you could get copyright strikes from Etsy or Google.
LEARN: How to Crochet for a Living in Kenya
22. If you love writing, churn that talent into creating fiction and non-fiction books
I love writing and keep on learning how to improve my writing. I look back at the articles I wrote here and on my 1000+ journals and realise how far I come with my writing.
These days, I can review my writing! Do you love writing? It won’t sound the first few years of starting, writing sounds perfect with time. And this is related to narrate books for a living.
If you have a great voice, begin by narrating children’s books or fiction books you love reading. Amazon has a tool called ACX, a free tool for audio narrators.
READ MORE: How to Write Books for a Living in Kenya
How to Narrate Books for a Living in Kenya
23. Become an organiser
Marie Kondo is my favourite person for organising, I love Kon Mari.
I don’t have a lot of organisation to do because I’m swamped with work most hours of the day.
In fact, my house is so decluttered an Airbnb guest said, ‘it’s so easy to keep your house clean, would you consider adding in some furniture?’’.
I hate things that distract me. But do you want to be an organiser?
Marie Kondo offers a chance on her blog. Send pictures of before and after then you earn a consultant certificate.
Check all the details on her website.
READ MORE: I Make 100k a Month Organising Homes in Kenya
24. Begin a daycare business from home without money
I loved the idea of a daycare in 2012 and learnt and read the heck out of it. Only to realise I hate kids noises and conflicts.
You can start a daycare form the comfort of your home without money! How? First, childproof your home DIY.
Then advertise and take in your nieces or nephews. Come up with creative entertainment ideas.
Learn by taking a kid at a; don’t time, don’t start by greed.
READ MORE: How to Begin a Daycare Business in Kenya
25. Rent out your baby gear
I learnt about renting baby gear you don’t use early 2018 or 2019. I found a website that does this.
Copy their business model, not to a T, if you have the baby gear to sell or rent out.
I said earlier, renting things out, is so confusing but will post back with ideas for those mums who want to rent stuff out.
26. Party plan for kids and adults or baby showers
Since learning how the state of California is big on kids parties, I knew I was into something.
I researched about organising kids parties from home and saw how parties were big business.
Begin a kids party business by reading this article. Kids parties include birthdays, graduations, initiations, baby showers.
Target market, Kenyans with money, doesn’t matter where they live.
27. Get into photography
I love taking photos, but I know some great photographers who don’t know how to make money by making their photos digital/downloadable for recurring revenue. Now, you know.
Do you have a smartphone and you love photography? Learn how to take great pictures by taking lessons on Skillshare or Udemy.
READ MORE: How to Sell Digital Photos Online in Kenya
28. Kids YouTube channel
I started a YouTube channel in 2013 when I wanted to share my frustrations about getting rejected as a freelance writer and opting to work as a virtual assistant.
After a few pushes and great open doors, I never made a video but had 15 followers who believed in me.
And for years until 2019, I never made videos consistently on YouTube. I still had impostor syndrome feelings and shyness.
I mustered up the courage in April 2019 and decided to go for it. Create, let them laugh, let me tell my stories.
And as they say, the rest is history. Youtube, for me, is fun and revenue comes in later.
So, do you have an idea or a theme for your YouTube channel? These days starting from a niche pays.
READ MORE: How to Begin a YouTube Channel That Pays in Kenya
Tips for Making Money With a Side Hustle
1. Consistency pays – nothing, even side hustle money comes easy. You have to consistently create or get better.
2. Keep learning – you cannot start any business and continue it without learning. I learn something daily about blogging – creating quality content, write captivating headlines and marketing.
Keep on educating about your industry. Learners do better in business.
READ MORE: How to Start a Side Hustle That Pays You 3M Shillings a Month in Kenya
Top 10 Books to Read for a Perfect Mum Side Hustle in Kenya
The $100 Startup – I read this book and felt cheated. But it has some good stories about startups. So, I won’t be recommending it again for side hustles.
The Lean Startup – Eric Ries
Running Lean – Ash Maurya
Start Your Own Business
The Fire Starter Sessions
The Side Hustle Million – Tony
The Side Hustle: How to Turn our Spare Time Into $1000 a Month or More
100 Side Hustles: Unexpected Ideas for Making Extra Money
Side Hustle: a Beginner’s Handbook on Effective Ways to Earn Extra Income – Eric Scott
Money on the Side – Heather Ledbetter
READ MORE: What’s the Best Book for Starting a Business? Profitable Side Hustles in Kenya
Resources on Side Hustles for Mums in Kenya
All the links lead to resources you will find or complete guides to start a side-hustle you want.
The complete guides are ideas/steps to take to begin your side hustle business.
I include mistakes I made or entrepreneurs make in the resources to show you what not to do or don’t do it this way but that way or in short what I discovered along the way of creating my business or what others found out.
If you have questions about any of the guides, leave it below or email me on GERTRUDE DOT AKINYI AT GMAIL DOT COM, of course, in email format.
How to Get Started Making Online as a Kenyan Mum
If you’re a Kenyan mum there are many side-hustles to help you get started on making money online.
There’s no need to depend on your husband or anyone. Set an earning goal for yourself.
Determine what side hustle or business or job you want to get started with.
Now, learn everything there is to learn about the business. Don’t stop learning, you will keep realising and uncovering new thins each and every day as a business owner or about yourself.
Stay patient and persistence, that’s what a business mindset is about. Staying on until you see results.
Which side hustles for mums in Kenya will you do as a Kenyan mum (stay at home mum, single mum or would be mum)?