Nearly one in four American adults earned money in the digital commerce ("gig") economy in the past year, according to a Pew Research Center survey: 18 percent earned money by selling goods online (such as Ebay), 8 percent earned money by selling their labor through a digital platform (such as Uber), and 1 percent rented out their property on a home-sharing site (such as Airbnb).
Percent earning money in past year by selling goods online
Aged 18 to 29: 23%
Aged 30 to 49: 27%
Aged 50 to 64: 12%
Aged 65-plus: 7%
Percent earning money in past year by selling labor through digital platform
Aged 18 to 29: 16%
Aged 30 to 49: 10%
Aged 50 to 64: 4%
Aged 65-plus: 2%
Among those participating in digital commerce, the importance of gig earnings varies greatly. The 56 percent majority of those who earned money by selling their labor through a digital platform say their earnings are important or essential. Among those who earned money by selling goods online, the figure was only 20 percent.
Source: Pew Research Center, Gig Work, Online Selling and Home Sharing