With most day jobs unable to meet financial needs, having a side hustle helps to bridge this gap. Hence this article will focus on the top 10 most profitable side hustles in Kenya. A side hustle helps you to make an extra income that complements your full-time job salary.

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What is a side hustle?

A side hustle is any economic activity that helps you to make income outside your full-time job. If done well some side hustles pay better than the day jobs and most of the time transition to becoming full time jobs.

Benefits of having a side hustle

There are various benefits you get by having a side hustle. Some of these include;

Extra income- A side hustle brings extra income that is key to helping you achieve financial independence. You can use this income to meet some of your needs such as paying bills and debts.

Keeps you engaged– There are still many hours left after you are done with the full-time job. Instead of wasting this precious time, you should focus on building your side hustle.

Ability to convert it to a full time job– Other than acting as a backup plan, you can convert your side hustle to a full time when it starts to offer better returns than your current job. It also gives you a sense of mental stability if things are not working with your main job.

Focus on your passion– Most side hustles are derived from passion. Hence, this is an opportunity to do what you like and still make some income from it.

Top 10 most profitable side hustles in Kenya

It is good to note that a side hustle is a business. Hence all the good business traits apply if you want to succeed. Learn more about the Factors to consider before starting a business in Kenya. Some of the most profitable side hustles include;

1.  Baking

This works well if you have a passion for baking.  The goal is to target customers especially those in the neighborhood and office colleagues. One key advantage of baking is that you can comfortably do it at home after work or during the weekends.

You only need to have the right baking tools such as the oven and skills. There is also a ready market due to the many occasions that need products such as cakes. An example of these occasions is birthday parties and graduations.

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However, you need to continuously market yourself to grow your customer base. If the business expands and demands more time, you can either make it a full-time job or get an employee to help you.

2.  Blogging

Blogging works well as a side hustle if you have a passion for writing. It also needs a lot of patience as unlike other businesses, it takes time to start paying. Sometimes it could take you years.

To start blogging, you need to first get a domain name and web hosting services. The costs of this depend on the type of services. However, this could cost as little as 10,000 shillings. The domain should be in tandem with your blogging niche.

As a starter, target to write at least 2 articles per week. Over time, your blog will expand as more visitors starts consuming your content. At this point, you can choose to monetize it through services such as Google AdSense and affiliate marketing. Below is a list of the top 10 affiliate marketing programs in Kenya that you can use.

3.  Buying and selling shares

Buying shares is a straightforward activity that involves investing in the Nairobi securities exchange. To start this process, you should open a CDS account.

This side hustle involves buying shares when they are low and selling when the prices rise. In the process, you book a profit. The Nairobi securities exchange is open 5 days a week and opens every day between 8 am to 5 pm. However, trading happens between 9.30 am to 3 pm.

The other requirement to start this side hustle is getting the relevant market knowledge and capital to start. However, it is good to note there are some risks associated with this process that could result in losses. The more you trade in this market, the easier it becomes to make profits.

4.  Uber business

Uber business belongs to the growing list of online taxi service providers in the country. Some of the key requirements to start this side hustle are getting a car and registering with Uber.

Upon registration, you become eligible to start receiving customer requests. Due to the full-time job, you should target doing the job either early in the morning or after work hours.

You can also target the weekend when you have more time and most people are traveling. Alternatively, you can get a driver to work during the day and avoid having the car sit idle. However, getting a driver comes with costs such as commission sharing.

This business is now expanding to most big towns in the country making it possible to start in almost every part of Kenya. Below is a more detailed process on how to become an Uber driver in Kenya.

5. Airbnb business

Airbnb business has become very attractive in the country in the last few years. It involves offering accommodation services to customers just as hotels do. However, the only difference is this happens online. You only need to have a place that you can rent for accommodation and register with Airbnb to start the service.

The registration process for Airbnb is straightforward as long as you meet the set conditions. Upon approval, your services will be available to potential customers online.

Airbnb business doesn’t require a lot of time as long as the house is ready for occupation. You can get someone to prepare it at a fee. Airbnb charges an average of 2,000 shillings for an average room for one-night accommodation. However, to increase customer satisfaction, you can add other services such as providing internet and food service.

Although it is possible to start this business in all parts of the country, it works better in those towns with more tourism and events hosting such as Naivasha, Nairobi, and Mombasa.

6.  Freelancing

This is also another business that depends on access to computers and the internet. Freelancing involves taking short-term jobs from various platforms in the country such as Upwork.

The type of jobs you can freelance for depends on your skills and time availability. Due to the day job, you should focus to take jobs that don’t require a lot of time to complete. This is because you have a limited time after work.

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Freelancing income is based on the number of hours or tasks completed. The payments are done after completing and submitting the task. The more jobs you do successfully, the higher the number of jobs you get.

The good thing about freelancing is the ability to take jobs from across the world. You also have the chance to set your payment limits.

7.  Food delivery business

The online food market in the country is expanding as more people prefer to order food instead of visiting restaurants. This is where the food delivery business comes in to facilitate food getting to the last mile.

Food delivery services hit a peak during key times such as lunchtime and in the evening.  Hence, you can use the extra hours after work to do the delivery.

You can either choose to deliver either using a motorbike or a bicycle. Some of the top food delivery service providers that you can use in Kenya include Glovo, Uber eats, and Bolt food. To start delivering, you should register with a service provider of your choice after which you get activated and can start receiving customer orders.

You make money for every successful delivery made. Hence, the more you deliver, the more you make.

8.  Part-time teaching

With the many colleges and universities coming up in the country, part-time teaching offers opportunities to create a good side hustle. Due to the day job, your ideal time to teach is during the evening hours and on weekends.

To get a part-time teaching job, you need to have the right academic qualification and skills. You should also focus on applying for the job or using your networks.

The amount of money you earn through part-time teaching is based both on the number of lessons you take and the institution. Hence, the more lessons you take, the higher your income.

This is one of those side hustles that you can turn into a full-time job when your day job is no longer viable. The skills and networks you make are key in helping you transition to a full-time job.

9.  Farming

As one of the biggest industries in the country, most Kenyans are already doing farming as a side hustle.  There are various types of farming that you can do depending on your location and interest. Some of the major farming ventures include dairy farming, cash crop farming, and vegetable farming.

If you are in a town with challenges of land, using modern farming methods such as hydroponics farming is more suitable.  The market for farm products is readily available and insatiable due to the daily consumption element. Hence, go for it if it interests you.

10.  Social media influencing

As more people join and use social media, businesses are starting to market their goods and services in this market. This has created an opportunity for social media influencers to market these businesses at a fee.

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If you have a big following on your social media pages, you can convert this to a profitable side hustle. However, you can also target to grow your followers by constantly posting relevant and quality content. Some of the main social sites to use include Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram.

Below is a recap of the top 10 most profitable side hustles in Kenya.

  1. Baking
  2. Blogging
  3. Buying and selling shares
  4. Uber business
  5. Airbnb business
  6. Freelancing
  7. Food delivery business
  8. Part-time teaching
  9. Farming
  10. Social media influencing


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