Do you struggle to make ends meet? You’re not alone. According to a new study commissioned by Herbalife, almost half (40%) of Americans are turning to side hustles or other forms of supplemental income in today’s challenging economy. And of those with side hustles, 48% started it solely to make ends meet. In addition, side hustles offer a feasible alternative to asking loved ones for money – something four in 10 Americans have found the need to do within the past year.
“The rising cost of living is causing Americans to fall behind on their monthly bills,” said Humbi Calleja, Herbalife vice president and general manager for North America. “More people are turning to direct selling opportunities to ease the financial strain.”
The study, conducted by One Poll on behalf of Herbalife, surveyed 2,000 Americans and 6,500 international respondents from 9 different countries. It examined numerous factors, including the motivations behind starting a side hustle, the most popular side hustles, the time Americans dedicate to these new ventures, and the impact finances can have on their mental health.
According to the findings, while most respondents with a side hustle are looking to make ends meet, others are interested in having a disposable income (29%), dealing with the rising cost of living (28%), and being less reliant on a single source of income (25%).
Additionally, with sixty-two percent of Americans admitting that they have no idea what their financial future holds and over half (58%) expressing that their financial situation negatively impacts their mental health, the positive impact of having a side hustle can potentially go beyond simply improving your finances to helping alleviate the stress associated with not having enough income.
The survey also uncovered some interesting statistics surrounding millennials. For example, in addition to being the generation that is most likely to have a side hustle (66%), they are also the most likely to say that their financial situation makes it difficult to pay for necessities (41%). In comparison, baby boomers came in at 40% and 13% in those two categories.
On average, Americans with side hustles commit almost ten hours per week to side hustles, with the most common including selling products on e-commerce websites and driving for ride-share — while other respondents turned to direct sales, otherwise known as network marketing.
With the growing popularity of network marketing as an alternative source of income and the numerous companies available to join, it’s more important than ever to ensure that people choose the opportunity that best meets their needs.
“It’s important for individuals to select a side hustle that is right for them, said Calleja. “In addition to flexibility, network marketing, especially, can offer low start-up costs and the opportunity to market a product or service you’re passionate about, making the work rewarding on various levels.”
Below, Calleja recommends simple tips to help people find the right network marketing company.
• Pinpoint the ideal product or service. Finding a consumable product that sells consistently and needs replacement is a great option. Nonetheless, the product or service should be something you’re passionate about because you’ll likely dedicate more time and effort to it.
• Learn about the company. Before deciding what company to move forward with, researching their background is a must. The longer the company has been in business, the more experience it’ll have to show.
• Determine your start-up costs. Once you identify the right company for you, determine the cost of the start-up kit. It will contain everything you need to get started and run your business.
• Study the compensation plan, as it will show you exactly how they plan to incentivize and reward your hard work if you are successful. It will also give you an idea of how much income to expect, how frequently, and how long it will take you to reach your goals.
• Confirm access to marketing support. Aside from your start-up kit, having access to marketing support will help grow your business. For example, the company should help you identify the target market to understand your customers better and provide online marketing resources to help you launch effective promotions.
• Research training opportunities. Ongoing training and connecting with people going through the same experience will help inspire you and enable you to run your business better.
• Ascertain opportunity for growth. Before securing your decision, ensure that the company has demonstrated continuous growth opportunities and is committed to helping you with resources and support in your attempt to reach your goals.
This random double-opt-in which surveyed 2,000 Americans and 6,500 international respondents from 9 different countries, was commissioned by Herbalife, a premier global health and wellness company and community, between Feb. 14 and March 15, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).
For more information about the survey or tips for entrepreneurs, visit Herbalife.com.