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How to Make Your Side Hustle a Full-Time Business

Take full advantage of your new opportunity by following these steps and planning for success.

You started a side hustle to make a little extra money but also because the product or service you provide is something you love. Now, as you see that demand is increasing, you're at a crossroads: Is it time to quit my 9-to-5 and turn my side hustle into a full-time business? It's a great "problem" to have!

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Giving up the benefits and security that come with a full-time job can be scary, but you've been at your side hustle for some time, so you already have clients and a lot of your foundation is laid. But there are many important steps ahead that will help enable you to scale and turn your part-time project into a business to call your own.

Here are several things budding business owners will want to consider before taking the leap.

Have a plan.

You've read about how the biggest businesses started out with its founders putting together a business plan. Well, yours needs one, too.

Your business plan might not need to be as detailed as, say, the next big tech behemoth, but it pays to put your thoughts and goals down on paper. Doing so before you quit your day job is likely the best idea since it will help you understand whether you can make this work on your own.

Things to consider include:

  • What are you naming the business? Do you have a logo?
  • What products/services are you offering? What are your prices?
  • How much money do you need to get going? Will you need a loan?
  • Who are your customers?
  • Who are your competitors? How do you differentiate from what they offer?
  • How will your market your brand (e-mail, social media, etc.)?
  • How will you scale the business?
  • How will you look after your health without relying on employer-supplemented health care? The health of your business often relies on your own heath — namely your vision.

Designed specifically so the self-employed can buy vision coverage on their own at affordable prices, VSP® Individual Vision Plans start as low as $13 per month and provide an average savings of more than $200 per year. You also get access to the largest network of independent eye doctors and customizable benefits options such as a comprehensive eye exam, prescription lenses with covered lens enhancements, and more.

What's more, there's no single enrollment period with VSP so anyone can sign up for an Individual Vision Plan at any time.

If you haven't already, create a business website.

Once your plan is set, one of your first tasks should be creating a website. Why? Most businesses today are discovered by new clients via web searches.

Whether you work with a web designer or create a site yourself using one of the many website builders, make sure your site has your name and branding, explains who you are, your background/experience, what products/services you offer, and includes a way to contact you. Many sites even include a tool that allows people to book an appointment with you directly without having to make a call.

Spend money wisely.

You're on your own now and you're excited about it. After all, this is your venture and you want the best of the best when it comes to branding, equipment, technology, etc.

While the enthusiasm is understandable, money is among your most valuable assets now. Whether you've taken out a small loan or you're dipping into your savings to get this business off the ground, smart solopreneurs spend their money wisely.

Do you really need a new sign, chair, desk, phone, big-screen TV … you name it? Instead of getting caught up in the excitement, spend your money slowly, especially out of the gate. If you don't need that shiny new object, the money you save may be better spent on things like branding, paying bills, or as previously discussed – insurance to make sure your health is protected.

Be flexible.

You've spent years honing your craft and developing a business plan. But some of the best-laid plans fall apart when unforeseeable circumstances play out.

Maybe a new competitor pops up in your market. Perhaps trends change and your service is no longer as desirable as it was. Whatever the issue, even the smartest business owners can't plan for everything. That's why you should be prepared to tweak your offerings or pivot your business entirely, if needed. Being flexible may prove to be one of your most valuable qualities when looking for long-term success.

Keep at it, no matter what.

This is the opportunity you've been dreaming of. You can't let minor obstacles derail your success.

Click here to learn more about how VSP's flexible and affordable Individual Vision Plans help solopreneurs do their best work without stress or hassle.

And for an exclusive, free report about the benefits and challenges of solopreneurship and thriving in the gig economy, complete the short form below:

VSP cannot and does not provide professional, financial, medical or legal advice. For more information, consult with professional association guidelines, state labor resources, financial advisors, and/or an attorney for advice.

VSP Individual Vision Plans

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