Why start an online business?
An online business is one of the best ways to start a business because of the ability to work remotely and the leverage of working online. With an online business, you have the ability to expand your reach and work with customers all over the world. To help you get started, I’ve created the ultimate list on online business ideas for you to explore.
Below is a list of real online businesses you can start today. Explore this list and use it as a brief intro to find the type of online business you are interested in starting.
1. Freelance writing
Freelance writing is a great online business to start and it’s actually how I got started making money online. With freelance writing, you write content for companies and do content like blogs, case studies and whitepapers.
Instead of being on staff like a normal writer, you work with many companies on a contract basis. This allows you to work remotely and manage your client base. Typically the better you are as a writer, the more you can charge for your services.
I’ve been tracking my progress with my freelance writing business, you can check out my latest income report linked here.
Blogging is a great online business model that allows you to monetize the traffic that comes to your website. With blogging, you create high quality content for what people search for on Google.
You can make money blogging by placing ads on your website, using affiliate links, creating your own products or more.
3. Selling on Amazon
Selling on Amazon is one of the biggest opportunities to build a scalable online business. There are over 140,000 Amazon sellers that generate over $100,00 in annual revenue and 22% of Amazon sellers have generated over $1 million in lifetime sales.
With selling on Amazon, you find products that are in demand with product research. Once you find a product that sells well, you can buy it from physical stores or from online stores. You can send your products directly to Amazon’s warehouses and Amazon will send it to customers.
Here are 10 tips you should know before selling on Amazon.
4. Online store
Building your own online store can be a great way to build a profitable online business. By creating your own online store, you can sell products to your customers and set your prices. With an online store, you can expand your reach and sell to customers around the world. Additionally, you can use marketing from social media to drive traffic to your site and get more sales.
The best way to start your own online store is to use Shopify. Shopify allows you to build your story easily and quickly without having to worry about servers, hosting and web development. You can create a store completely for free with Shopify’s free trial. You can check it out here.
5. Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing is one of the best low-cost and low-risk online businesses to start. As an affiliate marketer, you will refer customers to a business and when they purchase a product or service, you will get a commission.
With affiliate marketing, you focus on recommending products. You don’t own any inventory and you have basically zero overhead. To succeed with affiliate marketing, you’ll have to be good at getting traffic and directing that to businesses that can pay you commissions. You can do this with blogs, YouTube channels and more.
The main types of affiliate products you will be promoting will include:
- Physical products (ex. a computer on Amazon)
- Digital products (ex. referring someone to buy a course)
- Services (ex. referring someone to hire a professional)
Depending on the type of companies you work with, affiliate commission rates can be anywhere between 5-30%. If you can convert a few hundred affiliates each month, it can quickly start generating thousands of dollars each month.
6. SEO consulting
SEO consulting is a very lucrative niche in online business. Many businesses are in desperate need of improving their organic traffic and SEO specialists can drive thousands of organic visitors to sites each month.
The average SEO consultant earned $81,000 in 2018, while working an average of 44 hours per week. Since many SEO consultants work remotely, this is a great opportunity to build an online business. To demand higher rates, you’ll need to be able to display your expertise in SEO and generate results for many clients.
7. Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant is someone who provides administrative assistance for businesses and entrepreneurs. They generally handle the day to day work like emails, meetings and other specific needs that their client has.
Becoming a VA is a great way to start your online business journey. When you’re starting out, you cannot demand high rates because you lack experience. I did my first few writing samples for free to build a portfolio. This allowed me to ask for payment when I offered my services to clients.
You can start a VA business by focusing on helping one key demographic. You can reach out to businesses and entrepreneurs and offer your VA services at a monthly rate. Once you get your first client, you can use that work as a sample/portfolio to land your next client.
8. Self publishing
Self publishing is another way to make money online and it’s one of the most passive income opportunities. To succeed in self publishing, you’ll need to create a book, ebook or a similar digital product that targets a key demographic.
The great thing about self publishing is that once you complete the book, it’s completely passive. You can continue to make sales on your product and use that time to launch another book. Generally, the authors who succeed most with self publishing are those who can market to their audience well and convert their audience into buyers of their book.
9. Freelance editing/proofreading
Content teams at companies are always in need of editors and proofreaders to ensure content is up to par. Several companies I’ve worked with on a contract basis have had several editors on the team to improve the quality of content.
As a freelance editor or proofreader, you will read, edit and review content to ensure the grammar, voice and tone of a content piece is high quality. You can build your business by editing for several companies on a contract basis.
Depending on how well you can edit, you can charge higher rates. With a roster of clients, you can turn freelance editing from a side gig to a full time online business.
With the rise of remote and distance learning, tutoring has largely shifted online. Tutors use videoconferencing tools like Zoom and Microsoft Teams to teach students. This opens a huge opportunity for tutors to expand their student reach and basically teach anyone online a subject.
If you have expertise in a certain subject or career path, you can charge a lucrative rate each hour to teach a student a subject. With tutoring, you can have a full-time online business with a handful of recurring clients that you teach each month.
You can attract students to tutor by establishing a web presence and sharing helpful content. Tutoring rates can be anywhere between $20-$80 per hour depending on your subject expertise. You can learn more about how to start an online tutoring business here.
11. Data entry
Data entry is one of the best entry level online businesses to start. For many online businesses, you need some sort of expertise to get started. With data entry, all you have to know is how to use Excel and similar tools.
With data entry, you help companies enter data into their databases and systems. Many companies offer data entry specialists up to $20/hr depending on experience. If you work with several clients for data entry, it can turn into a lucrative side hustle or business that gives you thousands of dollars while working remotely.
12. Start a podcast
Podcasting is one of the most robust online businesses you can start because you can talk about your interests and monetize it. Starting a podcast is very inexpensive and you can get started with a free podcast platform and a smartphone.
Podcasts are one of the best long-term online businesses because you can build a brand and use that to venture off into other business opportunities. One of my favorite podcasts is Entrepreneurs on Fire, they talk in depth about the business of podcasting and they have released their financials every year since they started.
Today it is a multi-million dollar company, you can check out their income reports here.
13. Start a YouTube channel
A YouTube channel is another great platform to build an online business. With over 5 billion videos watched every day, you can capture YouTube’s users and make them your subscribers. Over time, you can build a loyal audience and create content based on your interests.
What’s great about YouTube is that you can monetize your audience in many ways. You can make money on YouTube with ad revenue, affiliate marketing, sponsorships and more.
You can start a YouTube channel for free and use video editing software to edit your videos. To learn more ways on how to make money with YouTube, check out this guide here.
14. Resume writing
If you have applied for a job online, you know the importance of having a professional resume to get past the automated software and to get an interview.
Job applicants pay resume writers top dollar to get the most professional and well-formatted resumes for their applications. Since resume writing is primarily done remotely, you can build a thriving online business writing and editing resumes for job applicants.
You can start by being a writer for a resume writing service and use that experience to launch your own resume writing service company. To learn more on how you can be a resume writer, check out this blog post here.
15. Sell on eBay
Selling on eBay is a great side hustle that can be turned into a full-time online business. eBay is one of the largest online marketplaces and there are millions of sellers that make thousands of dollars each month with selling on eBay.
To succeed with selling on eBay, you need to be able to learn how to product research, list inventory and ship products to customers when it sells. There were over $27.5 billion worth of goods sold in jus the first 3 months of 2021 on eBay.
Experienced sellers who have been selling on the platform for a couple of years can build sustainable 5 or 6 figure businesses.
16. Buy and flip domains
When anyone wants to create an online business, they’ll need a domain for their website. The best domains are often taken and people are willing to pay higher prices to get a specific domain name.
Buying and flipping domains involves buying a domain for the cheapest price possible (often cents) and selling to a buyer when they are interested. This is called domain investing.
Advanced domain investors can turn this side hustle into a full-time online business. Here’s an example of an entrepreneur who buys and flips domains full-time.
You can start an online coaching business based on your expertise in a given subject. As an online coach, you will be primarily working with your clients in an online format. This can include phone calls, emails and with video meetings.
To get started with online coaching, you need to select exactly what type of coaching you’re going to do. This should be based on something you have extensive experience in. In my case, I can offer coaching services for freelance writing since I have expertise in that area.
Pick a niche and focus on offering value to your coaching clients, you should be able to help get them the results they are looking for.
18. Create a course
Creating a course can be a great way to start an online business if you have expertise in a given discipline. Buying courses helps people get your experience and knowledge in one package. It can help them avoid common mistakes made when learning a new subject.
To have a successful course, you need to build an audience first. This can be from your blog, YouTube or any other social media profile. The goal of your course should be to provide value for your audience and help solve a pain point for them.
A great advantage of creating a course is that it takes little to no maintenance after the course is finished. It’s an extremely passive way to make money and it can be a great extra stream of income.
19. Graphic design
Graphic design is a great online business to start if you have experience with design work. Graphic designers can create logos, web designs, packaging and many other marketing materials. With a graphic design online business, you can work with clients all over the world remotely.
Your income will depend on how much experience you have and the type of clients you work with. You can get started by getting clients on sites like Upwork and Fiverr to build your portfolio. Once you land some clients and have samples of work, you can work with bigger clients and charge higher rates.
20. Website development
Web developers are in high demand and this is a lucrative online business opportunity. With website development, you can start your online business by becoming a freelance web developer. This allows you to set your own rate and work with clients remotely.
As you build up your expertise, you can charge higher rates and get more clients. This gives you the opportunity to hire other developers and grow your website development business. You can check out how this developer started a $750k/year website development business here.
Translation services are one of the best ways to start an online business if you can speak, read or write in multiple languages. The global economy requires language skills and translators with unique expertise can make significant income. The translators who specialize in specific services like technical translations, legal contracts and financial documents can demand high rates.
You can start your online translation business by doing some translation work on platforms like Fiverr and Upwork. Once you have some experience, you can use that to target bigger and better clients.
As a translation services provider, focusing on one niche is important and will help you be able to charge higher prices. For example, if you provide translation services for hospitals, you can brand yourself as an expert in healthcare translation. This will allow you to work with clients in healthcare like hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, etc. and charge higher prices for your services.
22. Social media management
Businesses of all sizes are looking for ways to increase their social media presence and build an audience. If you’re savvy and experienced with growing on social media, social media management is a great opportunity to build an online business. As a social media manager, you’ll help create content on the social media pages of companies.
You can charge a certain amount of money to manage the social media profiles of a company each month. If you get a handful of clients, this can become a full fledged business that you can do from anywhere. The more value you can create for your clients, the higher you can charge for your services.
Niche social media managers can command higher rates. For example, if you are a proven TikTok manager who can provide results for companies, you can charge high monthly rates to manage accounts. If you’re a master at one social media platform, focus on that one and provide as much value as you can for your clients. The more followers, traffic and engagement you can create for your client, the more money they will be willing to pay you. You can also use the work you do for one client as a sample to showcase and win future clients.
23. Clothing brand
Launching your own clothing brand can be a sustainable online business you can run for years. Clothing brands are very competitive, but if you learn how to market and design your clothes well, you can separate yourself from the competition.
To successfully launch a clothing brand, you’ll need to build an audience, design your products, find a manufacturer and market your clothes. Depending on the quality of your clothes and how well you can brand them, you can charge prices accordingly.
There are many companies that help entrepreneurs launch clothing brands. Some of the best ones include Teespring and Printify. You can use these companies to help with the branding and distribution of your clothing line until you have enough money to do it yourself.
A copywriter is a writer that writes copy (any piece of text) with the intention of turning a reader into a customer. This is different just a general writer because a copywriter directly helps a business make money with their writing. Copywriters generally write a lot of marketing material like ads, landing pages, emails, etc.
Depending on your experience and how well you can convert customers, you can charge a lucrative rate. Some popular examples of copywriting include product descriptions, email copywriting and web copywriting. Having a handful of copywriting clients can earn you a full time income while working from anywhere in the world.
25. Lead generation
Lead generation is basically providing prospects to a business and getting paid for it. Businesses either pay you a direct rate for each lead or they pay you a commission when one of your leads becomes a paying customer for the business. You can become an expert in lead generation by focusing on a specific niche and nurturing prospects for a business.
Since you’re bringing customers to a business, lead generation can be very lucrative especially for B2B (business to business) companies. You can turn this into a full time business by working with clients on a monthly retainer basis or a pay-per-lead basis.
26. 3D printing
3D printing is a large industry and you can create an online business in several niches within 3D printing. With 3D printing, you use computer aided design (CAD) to print to create solid 3D objects for your customers. As a 3D printing business owner, you’ll work with clients in different niches to create components and products for them.
To succeed with a 3D printing business, you need to understand the needs of your customers in your niche. You can start with just creating a 3D printing service and print products like spare parts, eyeglasses, toys and other prototypes for businesses. For more ideas on how to start a 3D printing business, you can check out this guide linked here.
27. Email marketing
Email marketing is one of the most profitable forms of marketing and companies are in desperate need of email marketers. On average, for every $1 that is spent on email marketing, the ROI is $42. As an email marketing expert, you can generate a lot of revenue for businesses and charge premium fees for your services.
To get started with email marketing, you’ll need to learn about your client and their needs and craft an email marketing strategy that will generate more customers for them. To do this, you’ll need to have an understanding of email copywriting along with being able to use email marketing automation tools.
28. App development
As an app developer, you will work with businesses to work on their apps and generate more business for them. To succeed with app development, you will need a thorough understanding of your market and your clients needs. You’ll need to build a variety of features and services for your client’s mobile application.
You need to have strong understanding of mobile app development along with iOS and Android development. As your grow your business, you will likely need to hire other app developers to meet your client’s needs. Check out this entrepreneur who launched an app development company and now earns $30k per month.
29. Virtual personal training
Personal training is a job that’s primarily done in person with a client, but there’s been a significant increase in demand for virtual personal training since the pandemic. As a virtual personal trainer, you will work with your clients to design a diet and exercise plan to help meet their health and physique goals.
You can charge a monthly fee or a per virtual session fee for your clients. To succeed as a virtual personal trainer, you’ll need to understand how to market yourself and build an audience. It’s also recommended to become a A Certified Personal Trainer (NASM-CPT). You can learn how to become a certified personal trainer here.
30. Press release writing
If you’re a good writer, you can look into press release writing as an opportunity to launch your online business. As a press release writer, you’ll primarily be writing professional press releases for companies. You’ll need to learn how to write all the components needed in a press release; this includes headlines, datelines, intros, body and call to actions.
Depending on how well you can write press releases, you can charge hundreds of dollars per press release. With a couple of monthly clients, you can start making thousands of dollars per month and grow your business by hiring more writers. You can start by joining platforms like Upwork and Fiverr to get your first clients. Once you have a few samples, you can use that to market to new clients.
If you’re a certified nutritionist, you can use your knowledge and expertise to launch your own online business. An online nutritionist does exactly what a in-person nutritionist does but completely virtual. You can even have meetings with clients with the use of videoconferencing tools like Zoom.
To succeed as an online nutritionist, you will need to establish an online presence and learn how to market to your clients. With a clientele, you can have a completely remote business and hire other nutritionist to grow your business. You can learn more about becoming an online nutritionist here.
One of the hottest online businesses today is to become an Airbnb host. As an Airbnb host, you’ll rent your property to Airbnb customers and get paid. With just a few properties, you can turn Airbnb hosting into a full time business and work virtually from anywhere.
To maximize your success with Airbnb hosting, you’ll need to have a good understanding of the market you’re hosting in and price accordingly. Many Airbnb hosts generate thousands of dollars off of just one property alone each month. Advanced Airbnb hosts automate their business with web-based apps and smart locks for their properties. You can learn more here.
33. Virtual call center operator
Becoming a virtual call center operator is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get started with making money online. As a virtual call center operator, you’ll do basically everything a normal call center operator does, but remotely. You will provide call, chat and other customer support services for companies operating in all parts of the world.
You can start with being a call center agent yourself. Once you get a few clients, you can start hiring other remote call center agents and become a full time operator. You can grow your business by learning more about telemarketing and offering your services to clients. This is a good online business opportunity if you have any experience with being a call agent or operator. You can learn more here.
34. Website flipping
Website flipping is the process of creating and developing a website with content and selling it later for a profit. This is very similar to blogging, but instead of having just one blog, you can buy and sell many websites to make money. With website flipping, you create content on a site and it’s starts to get views from search engines. Once you have enough views, you can monetize it with ads, affiliate marketing and other methods.
When your website starts to make money, you can either sell it on a marketplace like empire flippers or decide to hold on to it and sell at a later date. There are many entrepreneurs who make their living off of buying, developing and selling websites. To learn more about how this works, check out this free guide here.
35. TikTok content creator
TikTok is one of the most exciting new social media platforms and it’s ripe for new entrepreneurs and content creators. On TikTok, you can create viral short videos that can educate and entertain your audience. The virality of TikTok makes it a great platform to build followers quickly and increase your influence.
To earn money on TikTok, you need to be at least 18 years old, have a following of at least 10,000 followers and have at least 100,000 views on your page. TikTok announced that it’s allocating $1 billion to paying its creators and this is a huge opportunity for any content creators.
If you have an existing social media profile with a following, TikTok is a great avenue to gain a bigger audience and expand your brand. Many creators on YouTube and Instagram use the platform to gain access to a new audience.
36. Coaching for MCAT, LSAT and similar tests
If you are a student or someone who has experience with taking big standardized tests like the MCAT, LSAT or a similar test, you can start an online coaching business to help students. These large exams are often one of the most stressful and important exams of students’ lives. There’s a huge opportunity to earn money while helping students through a stressful part of their lives.
It’s not unheard of for students to spend thousands of dollars on coaching, books and other prep material. Just having a handful of students that you coach can be enough to earn you a full time income as a coach. Many successful coaches use platforms like YouTube to gain an audience and find students to coach. You can build your brand as a coach for one of these exams and this can be enough to catapult your business to the next level.
37. QA testing
QA testing is a huge market and has incredible potential for entrepreneurs. QA (quality assurance) testing is the process of ensuring the reliability and quality of software products. To get into QA testing, you either need to have experience as a QA tester or software engineer or have the ability to hire these professionals. QA testing is very lucrative and many QA companies make millions of dollars per year.
Once you have the necessary QA qualifications, you can get started working with clients. Many QA companies focus on working within a specific niche. For example, a QA testing company can focus on working primarily with app developers. If you’re interested in QA testing, you can check out a sample business plan here for a QA company.
38. Become an executive assistant
An executive assistant is someone who works alongside a person in an executive role like a CEO, CTO, CIO, etc. These executives are extremely busy and need a person to help them with their administrative work like emails, scheduling and other administrative tasks. Depending on the executive you are working with, this can be extremely lucrative. With the rise of remote work, there are a ton of opportunities to be an executive assistant completely online.
The work you will do will primarily center around the needs of the executive. Your day to day work may include receptionist work, generating contracts and agreements, handling payroll and more. Experienced executive assistants can handle a few executives and command high rates. You can build your own clientele as an executive assistant or use platforms like Upwork to find work. Here’s a link to some executive assistant profiles, so you can get a better idea of what this role entails.
39. Instagram influencer
You can make money and build an online business if you take Instagram seriously and build your brand as an influencer. The Instagram influencer market has reached a value of nearly $6 billion in 2021. This is a huge market for anyone who takes the platform seriously and can bring value to brands.
As an Instagram influencer, your focus is to build engaged audiences that trust you. By building engaged audiences, you can command high rates for promotions, sponsorships and other brand opportunities. The more niche your audience is, the more value you can provide for brands. Some of the popular niches on Instagram include travel, humor/entertainment and beauty.
Your pay as an influencer will be dictated by your audience size, your niche and your engagement. The audience size tiers include nano (1-10k followers), micro (10k-100k followers), mid (100k-500k followers), macro (500k-1m followers) and mega (1m+ followers). To learn more about becoming an Instagram influencer, check out this guide.
40. Drive Uber and Lyft
When people of online business ideas, driving for Uber and Lyft isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. This couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, there are many people who make a full-time living off of Uber and Lyft. Don’t take my word for it, check out the stats:
- In major cities like New York, the median income for an Uber driver is $90,000
- Drivers can make up to $40 per hour depending on demand; peak demand hours can be even higher
- A survey done on 100,000 Uber and Lyft drivers showed that the drivers earned between $16-$20 per hour nationwide
Expert rideshare drivers use strategies like maximizing their tax deduction to take home more money. This is a great side hustle to explore that can either turn into a full time business or allow you to work on your online business until it takes off the ground.
41. Fiverr freelancing
Fiverr is one of the best and easiest platforms you can start using if you have any skill. With Fiverr, you can set your rates for any skill you have and start making side income and eventually have a full fledged online business. With Fiverr, you can price your services anywhere from $5 to $995. Depending on the skills you have and how well you can market yourself, you can make a few thousand dollars each month with enough consistency.
Some of the skills you can sell on Fiverr includes graphic design, writing, logos, marketing, video editing and more. Basically any skill you have can be monetized on Fiverr. There are many freelancers who make a full time income on Fiverr. It’s important to focus, pick a skill and market yourself well to succeed on Fiverr. You can learn more about Fiverr here.
Photography is typically known as an in-person business, but today it has largely moved online. Unless you have an existing client base or referrals, the best way to start a photography business today is online. There are a multitude of platforms you can use to showcase your work and get clients. Many photographers use platforms like their own website, Instagram and TikTok to highlight their skills.
To start your professional photography business, you’ll need to cover the startup costs of getting your equipment like cameras, lenses, computer, website, etc. Once you have this done, start doing some work and get some samples to show to your clients. Make sure to show off your work on all platforms to increase your chances of landing a client. Many photographers like to niche down and become an expert in one area to get more revenue. For example, wedding photographers tend to charge much more than normal photographers. To learn more about how to start a photography business, check this guide out here.
43. Sell themes
If you’ve built a website before, you know that there is a large market for themes. The majority of websites today use WordPress and there’s a huge market where people buy and sell themes and plugins. There are many people willing to pay monthly or yearly plans for a plugin or theme that solves their problems.
To get started with selling themes, you either need to be able to develop themes or hire a developer who can do it for you. To succeed, you’ll need to niche down and pick a certain audience that you want to build the theme for. For example, you can focus on building themes for attorneys and law practices. This will help you identify your customer and build a niche that solves their needs.
The best places to sell your themes include Creative Market, ThemeForest and Codester.
44. Remote sales
Sales is arguably the most important part of running any business and this applies to online businesses as well. If you have any sales experience, start a remote sales business can be a very lucrative opportunity. Companies, especially remote companies, are willing to pay top dollar for good salespeople. If you are able to meet sales targets and close deals for companies, the sky is the limit for how you can earn in remote sales.
You can start by yourself and offer remote sales on a contract basis for companies. Once you close a few deals, you can look into expanding your sales team and servicing multiple companies or one company on a larger contract. To succeed with your sales team, you need to have efficient processes and competent staff to help meet your client’s needs.
To help you get started, here are a list of companies that are looking for remote sales agents. You can use this to prospect and reach out to find your first few clients and start your remote sales business.
45. Build a SaaS product
Software as a Service (SaaS) is a cloud computing model and it’s basically building a software product that users pay monthly for. The SaaS market is one of the most exciting markets and there are many 6, 7, 8 and 9 figure SaaS products being built daily. Out of all of the business ideas mentioned in this post, building a SaaS product is one of the most complex and long term businesses. Although creating a SaaS product is not easy, succeeding with building it can be lifechanging.
To succeed with building a SaaS product, you need to understand the market you are serving and the pain points you are addressing for your users. In addition to this, you will need to understand your technical stack, create a team and build a minimum viable product (MVP). Your SaaS product will be ready to launch and you can continue to reiterate based on user feedback.
A great example of success with building a SaaS product is Nathan Barry’s company ConvertKit. ConvertKit now generates tens of millions of dollars in revenue each year. You can check out the full story of ConvertKit in this interview here.
46. Web design
Web design is a great skill you can utilize to start an online business. As web designer, you’ll use technical and non-technical skills to create websites for clients. Web design is a crucial element of web development and it encompasses the entire frontend design and appearance of a website. To get start with a web design business, you need to be able to do web design or hire web designers and have a very good understanding of what clients are looking for.
A web design business requires you to find your niche, register a domain name, build your website and start finding clients. The web design business can be very crowded, so it’s important to niche down. Whether it’s your offering or the clients you work with, the more you can niche down, the more you can find the right clients for your business. Here’s an extended guide on how to start an online web design business.
47. Sell handmade crafts
One of the most unique opportunities to start an online business is selling handmade crafts. Handmade good are a very niche and in-demand and many buyers are looking for these goods and are willing to pay premium prices. This is the perfect type of business for someone who’s creative and has great knowledge of handmade goods.
The leading company in buying and selling handmade goods is Etsy. You can use Etsy and a variety of other platforms to sell your products and build your online business. It’s important to select the right niche to start with because many products will have varying profitability and demand. For example,
To succeed with selling handmade crafts, it’s important to learn how to market your products. Whether you are selling the product yourself or using a platform like Etsy or Amazon, it’s vital to learn how you’re going to sell products and acquire customers for your business.
48. Subscription box business
Subscription box businesses have been the rage over the last few years with companies like Dollar Shave Club, Birchbox and similar companies showing the revenue potential of the subscription business model. Subscription box companies provide their customers with a box of products every month for a flat rate/subscription. This is ideal if you sell products that customers need and want to use each month.
To start a subscription box business, you first need a good subscription idea. What can you provide to customers that they’d love each month? You can start by thinking of the products you buy routinely and see if that can fit a subscription model. Once you’ve picked an idea, choose a subscription price and start creating a site or another way to test out your subscription idea.
Once you’ve validated your idea and see that there’s demand for your subscription, you can start investing more heavily in your business and do specifics like choosing your box designs, taking pictures of the product, etc. To learn more about how to start a subscription box business, check out this guide here.
49. Facebook Ad Management
Advertising is the backbone of online business and many businesses rely on large tech platforms like Facebook to bring traffic to their site. Facebook ads in particular are one of the best ways to bring traffic to a site and companies pay top dollar for competent Facebook ad managers.
As a Facebook ad manager, you will create, run, manage and optimize ads for your clients. Many clients set aside an advertising budget each month, so you will work with these clients to maximize their ROI and acquire as many customers as effectively as possible.
You can start Facebook ad management with one client and expand and hire more staff when you get more clients. Companies often pay thousands of dollars per month for someone to run their ads. The better you are at producing results, the higher rates you can command. You can also learn how to advertise on different platforms like Instagram and charge more per client. You can learn more about the basics of Facebook ad management here.
If you are good at drawing/illustrating, starting an illustration business can be extremely fulfilling. Many people draw and illustrate for fun, but there’s a demand in the market for skilled illustrators who can help meet the needs of customers. There are many subniches within illustration; to start your business, focus on one and market to that audience.
Some of the niches within illustration include:
- Package illustration: As a package illustrator, you’ll be in charge of the colors, graphics and design of the packages used by companies
- Editorial illustration: Editorial illustrators help book publishers and magazines create book covers and designs.
- Apparel illustration: As an apparel illustrator, you’ll work with brands to help create designs for their clothing.
These are just some of the niches you can explore with illustration. As you build your clientele, you can start looking to hire more illustrators and grow your business. You can learn more about how to become an illustrator in this guide.
51. Admissions consulting
Every year, millions of students spend hundreds of dollars consulting with admissions consultant. If you’ve ever been in the midst of applying to different schools and programs, you know how difficult if it can be to gather all of the requirements and make sure your application is polished as possible. This presents a big opportunity for anyone who has experience getting into certain schools, professions and programs.
As as admissions consultant, you can charge more if you niche down and focus on a particular group of students. For example, if you’re someone who has experience with getting into medical schools, you can position yourself as a medical school admissions consultant and earn much more. In this example, you would help students prep for MCAT exams, medical school interviews, etc.
Admissions consulting can be a completely remote online business and you can work from anywhere as long as you can use tools like Zoom. To start as an admissions consultant, you need to brand yourself and show your credentials in regards to being able to get into a particular program and helping other students do the same.
52. Content editing
As a content editor, you will be looking over drafts of different content like blogs, articles, whitepapers and more and making any necessary corrections based on your client’s needs. Depending on your editing experience and niche, you can charge lucrative rates per page of content that you edit.
You can start a content editing business by getting clients yourself. Once you get more than you can handle, you can start outsourcing and hiring other editors to help you manage the workload. You can set up your own website and start using platforms like Upwork and Fiverr to get your first clients.
53. Digital marketing agency
One of the most exciting businesses to start is a digital marketing agency. A digital marketing agency basically helps businesses find and acquire more customers. The earning potential for digital marketing agencies is endless because you are solving one of the biggest business problems: finding customers. If you can continuously find and acquire customers for businesses, you can set high rates and monthly retainers.
To start a digital marketing agency, you’ll need to have expertise in at least one marketing channel/strategy. This can be content marketing, PPC, Facebook ads or any other medium. If you can find and capture customers for businesses through any strategy, you’re well on your way to having a successful digital marketing agency.
There’s a big opportunity to help bring brick and mortar businesses online and give them access to global customers with the power of the internet. Many local businesses in your area don’t even show up on Google, much less acquire customers online. You can start by pitching to businesses in your area and start hiring marketing experts as your business grows. To learn more about how to start a digital marketing agency, check out this guide here.