So what does pay depend on for a gig economy job? Well, really a multitude of factors but here is my list so far. After my list, I’ll go into an explanation of why I feel that is a factor for each.
- The Platform
Pay Depends On Demand
I say this all the time most gig economy jobs are based on the pure free-market economic rule of supply and demand. The more supply generally the lower the price, the more demand usually the higher the price. Uber & Lyft are most famous for this with their “Surge” pricing. However many other platforms have this demand-based pricing as well.
For you, the important thing to know is the higher the demand with fewer workers means bigger earnings in most gig economy jobs.
Pay Depends on Skill
Skill is still a huge factor in your pay not directly but mainly indirectly. If you can pick up more orders faster with DoorDash or UberEats you will probably finish more deliveries and at the same time have happier customers. So chances are they will tip you more.
Skill more or less develops with experience (just by doing the jobs), reading articles on forums or watching videos. Once you start to pick up on things you’ll start to make more money just because you will be more efficient.
Pay Depends on Knowledge
If you know a thing or two about what you’re doing you’ll make quite a bit more money. This includes knowledge of your area, gig proficiencies, and even customers needs & wants.
For example, If you know what kind of house travelers want to rent when listing your house on Airbnb you’ll be able to make it look better. If your house looks better generally you’ll be able to get more money per night and have it rented more often. This is not something exclusive to Airbnb but is more or less universal across the gig economy.
Pay Depends on Risk
Look there’s a reason underwater welders and elevator techs make GREAT money and its not because its so much fun. When elements of risk are put on the table you can make more money. This being said always be careful when working but realize in certain conditions you can make more money.
For example in huge snowstorms, people will pay a premium for a ride. Some drivers won’t want to take the risk of driving their car in the conditions so the ones that do will be making more. The same can be true in gigs like Rover, bigger dogs mean bigger messes. If you’re able to take on the risk that the owner did not potty train their dog the size of a baby bear you will likely make more money.
Pay Depends On Luck
At the end of the day sometimes your pay all just depends on luck. When I did uber for the 2015 Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio I ran across a driver who told me an amazing story. He told me he one time took a passenger on a 10 times surge while driving for Uber Black (these are already twice as expensive) so he was more or less driving on a 20 times surge. The passenger was a Cleveland Browns player so he didn’t give two craps about costs. The ride was about an hour and a half long and the driver made about $750!!! That just kinda luck.
Sometimes people will agree to ridiculous surges or tip you obscene amounts of money. If that happens be thankful because it’s not the norm.
Pay Depends On The Platform
The last factor is really going to be who you’re working for. Most gig economy platforms are just a smart way of connecting you to your customer and you want to be on whichever one you make the most money. Depending on each platform you can make more or less. When Uber stopped doing multiplier surges and started doing flat-rate ones I switched to driving for Lyft for the simple fact that I could make more on big fish rides.