- Julie Berninger was looking for another side hustle when she decided to open an Etsy shop selling items for bachelorette parties.
- Jennifer Goncalves started an Etsy shop to sell wedding printables like invitations and save-the-dates, and later expanded to holiday items like romantic Valentine's Day coupons.
- Rachel Jones took some time to figure out what she should sell in her Etsy store, and ultimately landed on holiday printables like "Elf on the Shelf."
As side hustles grow in popularity, those interested in getting started might, at times, encounter challenges. More than a quarter, 28%, of side hustlers report having trouble finding the right idea, according to an October 2021 DollarSprout survey of 500 people with side hustles. And 30% said their biggest challenge was finding time to work on their new project.
If you're worried about the time commitment, keep in mind that some side gigs take up less time than others. Those that offer a passive income stream, for example, require effort upfront but then less time down the line.
Passive income side hustles include writing e-books, renting out your space, and creating a YouTube channel. Another option for creating a passive income stream is building an Etsy store to sell printables, which are downloadable budgets, calendars, cards, and so on that customers buy and print on their own.
Here are three women who have built a passive income stream on Etsy.
Julie Berninger had long been dabbling with side hustles when it occurred to her to start an Etsy shop in 2017. She decided she'd sell items for bachelorette parties. "I was in my late 20s and I was going to tons of bachelorette parties," she previously told Grow, "and I just knew that there was a market there."
Berninger, who is now 33, started her store selling items like temporary tattoos. But people didn't buy every design, leaving her with boxes of tattoos she didn't need.
After learning about printables, she decided to switch to selling printable bachelorette party items like scavenger hunts. When the pandemic hit and many bachelorette parties were cancelled, she expanded to items like New Year's planners and Airbnb host templates.
These days, her store, The Swag Elephant, brings in $1,000 in passive income every month. Berninger eventually decided she wanted to share the lessons she'd learned in her Etsy journey, and created an online course about selling printables on the site.
In 2018, Jennifer Goncalves was deliberating what to do in life. She was working as an office specialist at Sacramento County for 5 years. She realized that, "I don't want to work for anybody," she previously told Grow. "I think I want to work for myself."
In her search for the next professional adventure, Goncalves encountered and took Berninger's course about starting a printables store on Etsy. Having recently eloped, she was all too familiar with the financial woes of planning a wedding, and decided she'd offer printable wedding invitations to couples looking to save. Her original packages went for about $24.
In March 2020, just before the pandemic, Goncalves quit her job to focus on the store full-time. Now 34, she has expanded her line from wedding-specific printables to holiday items like Valentine's Day coupons for breakfast in bed as well. She currently brings in nearly $3,500 per month in passive income from the site.
Rachel Jones, who goes by a pen name for privacy, started looking for another way to make money in 2018. "My goal was always to do enough side hustles to eventually be able to quit a full-time job and work for myself," she previously told Grow.
Like Goncalves, she found and took Berninger's course. She decided to build an Etsy shop, and began by selling budget planners and savings trackers for $2 to $10 each. The store was slow to pick up, but Jones, 34, noticed even without further effort, Etsy "was still making about $50 a month with just a handful of products."
In 2020, she decided to buckle down on finding and creating niche products that could really bring in a client base. She now uses search engine optimization and tools like trends.google.com to see what kinds of products people are searching for ― like "Elf on a Shelf" printables for Christmas. The technique has brought her much success.
Her store features more than 200 printables and brings in an average of $12,500 per month in passive income.
More from Grow:
- Millennial mom whose passive income side hustle brings in $12,500/month: My goal was ‘to quit a full-time job and work for myself’
- How a 33-year-old mom makes $1,000 per month in passive income on Etsy
- Meet a 34-year-old who has sold over 11,000 items on Etsy and makes nearly $3,500/month in passive income