Platform Stacking: How To Multiply Your Sharing Economy Salary

Platform Stacking in the gig economy

The internet has ushered in a new era where anyone with an internet connection can make some extra money.  Whether it’s starting an online business or driving for Uber.  There’s opportunity out there for everyone.


What is Platform Stacking?

So you’ve begun your sharing economy journey, and you’re killing it. You are making serious side income now through sharing economy platforms such as Uber, Airbnb, TaskRabbit, or others. Now what? Sit back and relax? Well, yes, do some of that. But consider doubling down with the sharing economy through platform stacking.

If you are a regular at the Casual Capitalist, you know the process of platform stacking.

Platform stacking is the practice of establishing a presence on many sharing economy platforms

For instance, if you drive with Uber, why not also drive with Lyft to double your income potential? Or, if you rent your home on Airbnb, why not rent it as well on Homeaway or Breather? Since you already walk dogs through, why not post a profile on DogVacay? This seems simple enough.

By doing this you are stacking the deck in your favor by multiplying your potential customer base. You’ve already developed your profile for one platform, so there is little extra effort to register for a platform in a similar niche. Take a minute to think of your sharing economy journey, which platforms do you work primarily with? Can you stack with other similar platforms?

This is what we refer to as tactical stacking: being present on many sharing economy platforms within a specific niche.

This is when you would use Lyft as well as Uber, or Homeaway as well as Airbnb, or TaskRabbit as well as Handy, or EatWith as well as Feastly.

On the other hand there is strategic stacking: having a presence on many sharing economy platforms regardless of their specialty. Simply put, strategic stacking is leveraging as many platforms as possible regardless of their niche to make as much money as possible. Let’s use an example.

Meet Dave (Hi Dave!)

Dave is a newly minted Casual Capitalist who is killing it on Uber. Dave works full-time in the sharing economy. Here is a breakdown of a typical day for Dave:

8am-10am: Uber and Lyft driving (earns $40-$50);
10am-12pm: Dave completes tasks on TaskRabbit (earns $40);
12pm-1pm: Dave eats shawarma at his favorite restaurant;
1pm-3pm: Dave sets up shop at a coffee shop and works on his tutoring business using Wyzant and Skillshare (earns about $1,200/month, so $60 a day Mon-Fri);
3pm-5pm: Uber and Lyft driving (earns $40-50); and,
5pm: Dave returns home to his beautiful family for dinner and play time.
Dave makes on average $190 a day, 5 days a week Monday to Friday. Dave usually commits to one weekend night a month driving with Uber and Lyft. On a busy Saturday night in Seattle, Dave typically makes $200.

All told, Dave brings in $3,840 a month by working full-time in the sharing economy. This doesn’t include the income his family brings in from renting their basement suite on Airbnb. Dave’s wife Jessie handles that.

Dave’s schedule is the perfect example of strategic platform stacking. Dave is pooling all of his skills and working on many sharing economy platforms from different niches.

You don’t need to limit yourself to just one platform, or one sharing economy niche. Expand your income basket by trying out different platforms. What do you have to lose? Spend a few minutes thinking how this could work for you. And please, report back to the Casual Capitalist community. Write your comments below on your successes, failures, or recommendations related to platform stacking.

That’s all for today. Keep the income coming by stacking the deck in your favor.

Outside Resource: Check out a fantastic blog post from The RideShare Guy on how to drive with Uber and Lyft.