40 of The Best Paid Side Gigs for Software Engineers! Earn Extra Income in Your Free Time!

Welcome back to my blog! My name is Fortuna and I’m a bit of an expert in side hustles. Back in 2015 I set up a hair supplement brand which made over $1 million! I sold my hair vitamin company back in 2022 and I love sharing the downright bizarre and tough lessons I learnt along the way.

In the dynamic world of technology, software engineers have a unique advantage when it comes to side hustles. Their skills are in high demand, and the digital nature of their work allows for flexible opportunities to earn extra income. Here are 40 side gigs that software engineers can pursue to make the most of their abilities and free time.

40 of The Best Paid Side Gigs for Software Engineers:

Freelance Development

Freelance development is one of the most straightforward side hustles for software engineers. Platforms like Upwork and Toptal connect freelancers with clients who need custom software solutions, making it a great way to make extra money as a software developer.

Create Educational Content

Software engineers with a knack for teaching can create educational content. This could be in the form of eBooks, video tutorials, or online courses. It’s a rewarding way to share knowledge and earn money on the side.

Mobile App Development

Developing mobile apps is a lucrative side hustle for software developers. Whether it’s a game, productivity tool, or social app, successful apps can generate significant income through sales or ads.

Best side hustles for software engineers

Open Source Project Contributions

Contributing to open source projects can sometimes lead to paid opportunities. While it starts as a voluntary effort, active contributors can attract sponsorships or find paid work through their visibility in the community.

Technical Writing

Technical writing is a side hustle for software engineers that involves creating documentation, manuals, or articles. Websites like iWriter and Textbroker pay for written content, providing a side income for software engineers.

Consulting

Experienced software engineers can offer consulting services. This side hustle involves advising businesses on software solutions, system architecture, or workflow improvements.

Bug Bounty Programs

Participating in bug bounty programs is a side gig for software engineers where they can earn rewards for finding and reporting security vulnerabilities.

Develop Plugins or Extensions

Creating plugins or extensions for existing platforms can be a profitable side hustle. Developers can sell these add-ons or offer them for free and earn through donations.

Participate in Coding Competitions

Coding competitions like those hosted on HackerRank or Codeforces can offer cash prizes and are a great way to make extra money as a software developer.

Build a SaaS Product

Building a Software as a Service (SaaS) product can turn into a best side hustle for software engineers. It requires upfront work but can result in a steady stream of passive income.

Continuing with the list of side gigs for software engineers:

Algorithm Development

For those who excel in problem-solving, algorithm development can be a side hustle for software engineers. Developing efficient algorithms for companies or tech startups can be a side hustle as a software engineer that not only challenges you but also pays well.

Cloud Computing Services

Offering cloud computing services is a side hustle for software developers. With the rise of cloud technology, there’s a demand for professionals who can navigate platforms like AWS, Azure, or Google Cloud, making it a side income for software engineers.

Best side hustles for software engineers

Game Development

Game development can be a fun and profitable side hustle. Whether it’s indie games or contributions to larger projects, it’s a side hustle for software engineers that can bring both satisfaction and extra income.

UI/UX Design

If you have an eye for design, UI/UX design is a side hustle software engineer can consider. Helping companies improve their user experience can be a rewarding side hustle for software developers.

Cryptocurrency Development

With the growing interest in cryptocurrencies, there’s a niche for software engineers in this field. Whether it’s developing new coins or working on blockchain technology, it’s a side hustle for software engineer that can be quite lucrative.

Automation Scripting

Creating automation scripts to streamline tasks is a side hustle for software engineers. It saves time for clients and can be a side income for software engineers.

Cybersecurity Consulting

As a software developer side hustle, offering cybersecurity consulting can be very profitable. With the increase in cyber threats, your expertise can protect businesses and earn you a side income as a software engineer.

SEO Optimization Services

Offering SEO optimization services for websites can be a side hustle for software developers. It’s a side gig for software engineers that can significantly improve a client’s online presence.

Peer Code Review

Offering peer code review services is a side hustle for software engineers. It’s a way to ensure quality and consistency in code, making it a valuable side hustle for software developers.

Technical Support

Providing technical support is a side hustle for software engineers. Whether it’s for software, hardware, or networks, your expertise can help solve problems and provide a steady side income for software engineers.

Certainly! Here are more side hustle ideas tailored for software engineers:


AI Model Training

With the rise of machine learning, there’s a demand for engineers who can train AI models. This side hustle for software engineers can involve data preprocessing, model selection, and optimization.

IoT Development

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a growing field, and developing IoT devices or systems can be a profitable side hustle. It’s a side gig for software engineers interested in hardware and connectivity.

AR/VR Development

Augmented Reality (VR) and Virtual Reality (VR) development is a cutting-edge side hustle. Software engineers can create immersive experiences for various industries, making it a side hustle for software developers with a passion for emerging tech.

Blockchain Development

Blockchain technology is not just for cryptocurrencies. Software engineers can work on decentralized applications (DApps), smart contracts, and more, making it a lucrative side hustle.

Technical Podcasting or Vlogging

Starting a technical podcast or vlog can be a side hustle for software engineers. Sharing insights, latest trends, and tutorials can attract a following and open up monetization opportunities.

Code Auditing

Offering code auditing services is a side hustle for software developers. Ensuring code quality and security for other developers or companies can be a side gig for software engineers that also helps improve coding skills.

Software Localization

Localization involves adapting software for different languages and regions. It’s a side hustle for software engineers that requires understanding of both programming and cultural nuances.

E-Learning Platform Development

Developing platforms for e-learning can be a side hustle for software developers. With the shift towards online education, there’s a need for robust and user-friendly e-learning solutions.

DevOps Services

Providing DevOps services is a side hustle for software engineers. It involves streamlining software development and deployment processes, which is crucial for businesses.

Software Sales and Affiliate Marketing

If you have a sales streak, selling software or participating in affiliate marketing can be a side hustle for software engineers. Recommending products you trust can earn you a commission and provide value to your audience.

Certainly! Let’s continue with more side hustle opportunities for software engineers:


Voice Technology Development

Voice technology is rapidly advancing, and there’s a growing market for developers who can integrate voice recognition and response features into applications. This side hustle for software engineers can involve working with platforms like Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant to create custom voice commands or skills.

Video Game Modding

For those who enjoy gaming, creating mods for popular games can be a fun and rewarding side hustle for software developers. Mods that add new features, fix bugs, or enhance gameplay can become quite popular within gaming communities.

Software Review Blogging or Vlogging

Starting a blog or vlog to review software tools, frameworks, and technologies can be a great side hustle for software engineers. By sharing your expertise and opinions, you can attract a following and potentially earn revenue through ads, sponsorships, or affiliate marketing.

Develop Educational Games

Combining education and entertainment, software engineers can develop educational games as a side hustle. These games can help users learn new skills or subjects in a fun and interactive way.

API Development

Developing APIs for other developers or companies can be a profitable side hustle. Well-designed APIs are in high demand and can be a steady source of income.

Software Testing and QA

Offering software testing and quality assurance services is a side hustle for software engineers. This can involve manual testing or writing automated tests, ensuring that software is reliable and bug-free.

Niche Software Development

Creating software for niche markets can be a side hustle for software developers. This could involve developing tools for specific industries or hobbies that you are knowledgeable about.

Tech Event Planning

Organizing tech events, meetups, or hackathons can be a side hustle for software engineers. It’s a way to network, share knowledge, and earn money through event planning and management.

IT Equipment Reselling

Reselling IT equipment can be a side hustle for software developers. By refurbishing and selling used tech gear, you can make a profit and help the environment by recycling electronics.

Custom PC Building

For those who enjoy hardware, custom PC building can be a side hustle for software engineers. You can create high-performance computers tailored to the needs of gamers, designers, or video editors.


These side hustles not only provide additional income but also offer the chance to work on interesting projects and expand your skill set.

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