16 ideas for a small business

Are you tired of working for someone else? Are you thinking about launching your own business? Whether you’re a stay-at-home mom or an aspiring entrepreneur, there are tons of opportunities out there for people who want to start their businesses and earn money online.

The great thing is, that many of these sites offer low barriers to entry, which means it doesn’t take much money or expertise to get started. All you need is some passion and willingness to put in the work!

So what are you waiting for?! Let’s make some money!

Here are 16 ideas for a small business that can help jumpstart your journey:

16 ideas for a small business

Start a blog.

Starting a blog is one of the best ways to get started in e-commerce. Blogs are easy to set up and run, and you can monetize them with ads or affiliate links.

You don’t need a degree in marketing or design to start a blog—you just need some basic knowledge about how the Internet works and some time on your hands. Once it’s up and running, even if you don’t have much traffic yet if your content is evergreen (that is, it doesn’t depend on current events) people will still find it useful long after its initial posting date.

If you have an idea for a product that hasn’t been made yet but seems like something that others might want then this could be the perfect opportunity for you!

Become a virtual assistant.

If you have a background in business, social media, writing or other areas that can help others with their projects, becoming a virtual assistant is a great way to make money doing something you enjoy. If you’re good at writing and editing, but don’t have any formal training, this could be a great way to build your resume.

Virtual assistants provide administrative support to clients from anywhere in the world via phone or email. They offer solutions for everything from setting up Facebook pages and websites to managing social media accounts on behalf of clients; they also write blogs and articles on behalf of their clients.

Benefits of being a virtual assistant include:

  • Flexibility: You can work as much or as little as you want based on your schedule. Many people choose this career because they want more time with family members who live out of state or are retired and looking for something fun to do with their free time! It’s also appealing because there’s no commute involved – just set up shop wherever works best for YOU!

Write an ebook.

If you want to write an ebook, there are a few things you should know. The most important thing is that you should write about something that you are passionate about. You can also write about your area of expertise or the market demand for your book.

  • Write about something that is in demand. This can be very useful because people will buy it if they need what they are looking for. It’s better than writing an ebook on something random and unknown.* If possible, make sure that your book isn’t too long so that people won’t get bored reading them!

Sell a physical product.

Selling a physical product can be one of the most lucrative options for a small business, especially if you’re going to sell it online.

If you’ve already got an e-commerce website, selling physical products is as simple as adding them to your virtual shelves. Just make sure that your products are in stock before someone orders them!

You can also market your services offline and online through print advertising and social media marketing campaigns. Or, if you prefer working directly with clients face-to-face or over the phone, try finding a clientele through personal connections first—it’s always easier to gain new customers by networking than it is by cold calling strangers.

Be a freelancer.

Freelancing is a great way to make money since you can set your hours and work from anywhere. Plus, there are plenty of independent contractors who love working for themselves because it allows them to be their bosses and build their brand. It’s also an opportunity to connect with other professionals in your industry.

Start a pet sitting service.

If you love animals and have a knack for caring for them, starting a pet sitting business might be right up your alley. There are many benefits to this type of work, including flexible hours and the ability to choose clients based on what works best with your schedule.

You can get started by researching the pet sitting industry in your area—find out what types of services are offered and how much they charge per visit; compare similar businesses’ websites (or even reach out directly), and compile as many statistics about the industry as possible.

Next, consider what kind of contract you’ll use when hiring new employees or accepting new clients. You may also want to consider setting policies regarding things like vaccinations or feeding schedules so that everyone knows what’s expected from them throughout their time working with you.

Once all these preparations have been made, it’s time to market yourself! Make sure people know about who you’re offering service through social media posts (and make sure those posts include pictures), flyers around town, word-of-mouth recommendations from current customers/employees…whatever methods work best in getting potential customers’ attention!

Finally: while there are no guarantees against legal liability when running any small business venture (pets included), there are steps that can be taken toward protecting yourself from harm while still enjoying everything else being self-employed has to offer.”

Start and sell your cookies.

How to sell your cookies:

Make sure you have a good recipe. Start with a tried-and-true recipe for the type of cookie you want to bake. For example, if you’re starting a chocolate chip business, the best thing to do is look up recipes on the internet using terms like “best chocolate chip cookies” or “the best chocolate chip cookie recipe.” If people are still talking about how much they love their grandmother’s recipe after she died 20 years ago, it’s probably going to be good enough for your business (though perhaps not as good as grandma’s).*

What to sell your cookies at:

Find out what people in your area are willing to pay for baked goods. Look online and see what other local bakeries charge for similar items.*

Be a freelance writer/editor/proofreader.

Being a freelance writer/editor/proofreader is a great way to get experience. You can work for free or for low pay to build a portfolio of your work and gain valuable experience.

The key is to have something that distinguishes you from other writers, such as an interesting writing style, experience with a specific subject matter, or even just being willing to go above and beyond when others aren’t willing.

If you’re willing to put in the work but don’t know what services people need yet, try signing up on Fiverr or Upwork where you can offer your services at different rates (e.g., $5 per article).

This will allow people who need certain types of content written down but not necessarily edited—like bloggers who want blog posts written—to hire someone like yourself who’s looking for their first gig as well!

Become an Instagram influencer or blogger.

Become an Instagram influencer.

Become a blogger and make money blogging.

Check out the guide on how to become a blogger for more tips on getting started in this industry!

Become a graphic designer/animator/illustrator/artist.

Whether you’re a beginner or a pro, the graphic design and illustration fields are great for people looking to start their own business. You can create your portfolio website, get clients and make money doing what you love.

You don’t need any fancy equipment or software to get started. If you’ve got a laptop with internet access, you have everything you need! Start by creating a website that showcases your work as an artist or animator—and then expand from there.

If this sounds like something that interests you, here are some ideas for things that could be done:

  • Create a brand new website with custom graphics and illustrations (this might require hiring someone else)
  • Create an online store on Shopify or Etsy
  • Write children’s stories based on characters from video games like Mario Bros., Zelda, etc (make sure they’re G-rated!) This could also be expanded into making videos about these characters using animation software such as Adobe Flash/Animate CC

Offer web design services for other businesses and bloggers.

If you can offer web design services, then this is a great way to make money. You can do this from home, as long as your computer has a good internet connection and you have the right software (such as Adobe Photoshop).

You’ll need to have a strong grasp of the English language because many clients will want their websites translated into other languages.

You should also be able to write well, so you can communicate with your clients about their ideas for their sites and explain how they would work best on different platforms.

It’s also useful if you know how social media works and how people interact with each other online, to help your client understand what works best when designing their website.

Perform data entry work for small businesses and bloggers.

Data entry, in a nutshell, is the process of entering data into a computer system. Some people who do this type of work are called “keyers,” since they are keying in information from paper forms.

Data entry jobs have been around for decades, but there has been a recent boom due to the increasing popularity of freelancing sites like Upwork and Freelancer.com (formerly known as Elance).

You can also find data entry jobs on Craigslist or through Indeed—but be careful not to get scammed!

If you want to get started with your own small business doing data entry work, here’s what you need:

  • A computer with an internet connection (ideally one that’s fast enough for multiple tabs open at once)
  • A quiet room where you can focus without distractions

Launch your own YouTube channel, then monetize it with ads or partner with brands that align with your content.

  • Launch your own YouTube channel, then monetize it with ads or partner with brands that align with your content.

YouTube is one of the biggest video platforms on the internet and can be a great way to make money from a small business if you have an audience that’s interested in what you’re doing and will watch videos about it. You can also work directly with brands to create sponsored content that matches your audience’s interests.

  • Start selling products on Amazon and other e-commerce platforms like Shopify and Etsy, then use social media marketing tactics like paid ads (Facebook/Instagram) or influencer outreach to drive traffic there

Become an online course creator (Udemy would be great for this!).

If you are a good teacher, or have unique skills in an area that others admire and would like to learn about, then this option may be for you.

If you’ve ever thought about creating an online course but don’t know how to get started or feel intimidated by the thought of putting yourself out there, Udemy is a great platform that makes it easy to create and sell your very own course.

Your ability to make money doing this will depend largely on how good of a teacher you are—and how much demand there is for what it is that you know!

Teach people how to find their passion and start living life on their terms as a life coach.

If you’re a people person with a big heart, this could be your calling. A life coach is someone who helps others define their passions and live life on their terms. They can be coaches for individuals or groups of people, but you don’t need to be in a classroom to do it.

If you’re considering becoming a life coach yourself—or are just curious about what the job entails—here’s what you need to know:

  • What is a life coach? A life coach helps people make changes in their lives by guiding them through self-awareness exercises and goal setting. They work one-on-one or in groups with clients who want support getting things done in areas such as career, relationships, or finances.

Mentor others who are trying to start their own business and surround themselves with like-minded people via MeetUp groups, Facebook groups, etc.

Mentoring is a great way to make money. Many mentors are willing to teach others what they know and can be found in various places, such as MeetUp groups and Facebook groups. They may offer advice on how to write your business plan, financial projections, marketing strategy, or website design (among other things).

You can start earning money online with little to no initial capital required!

You can start a business with little to no initial capital required!

You can start a blog, a YouTube channel, or a website—and start earning money from it. You don’t need any special skills or knowledge for this. All you need is your imagination and the will to get started on whatever idea you have in mind.

You can also start an online business with very little money but some time and effort on your part. I know many people who started their businesses with next to nothing but their laptops because they saw an opportunity and took advantage of it by creating content that they knew would be valuable to other people who shared similar interests as them (e.g., video game reviews).

This type of approach requires patience since it usually takes time before you begin seeing any significant returns on investment (ROI), but once those returns do come in you’ll feel like an entrepreneur just like me!


Hopefully, you’ve found some great ideas for creating your own business. Keep in mind that all of these can be done online and in the comfort of your own home! Whether you want to start a blog, be a virtual assistant, or sell products on Etsy, there are many different ways to make money from doing what you love. We hope this post has inspired some new ideas to pursue so that one day you can say with certainty: “I run my own business.”

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