The entrepreneurial environment is teeming with opportunity and life. You no longer need a large amount of money or a physical location to start a business. You can start a new business today with just a dash of imagination and a pinch of willpower.
If you’ve found yourself here, you’re presumably looking for a solid company concept. An idea that promises both a fulfilling journey and potential profit yet is light on your wallet. Let’s get started as we explore some top business ideas designed just for today’s aspiring entrepreneurs.
Are you looking to sell products online but lack the funds for inventory and storage? Consider dropshipping! Dropshipping is an ecommerce business model where you don’t manage any physical products.
All you need to do is establish an online store and partner with suppliers. These suppliers will handle the storage, packaging, and shipping of orders to your customers. There’s no need to do a lot of product research either.
There are both niche and general products you can add to your store, as long as they come from a reliable source—low quality or delayed shipping will reflect poorly on your business. Plus, you can curate products under a theme that resonates with your audience, like sapphire rings for jewelry enthusiasts or mats for car owners.
2. Print on demand
If you’re on the hunt for promising online business ideas, print-on-demand (POD) is certainly worth your attention. In the POD model, you craft designs for items like phone cases, mugs, or t-shirts. But here’s the twist: you’re not doing the printing. That’s where your suppliers come in. They print, package, and ship, and you pay only after a sale—meaning no initial costs.
POD is about customization. Everyday items become blank canvases. Your designs breathe life into them. Designing t-shirts for tech enthusiasts? Craft designs with clever coding jokes. Creating mugs for cat lovers? Think playful illustrations.
For a marketing boost, consider partnering with Instagram influencers—they can spotlight your POD items to their vast audiences.
Multilingual individuals are always in demand. If you’re proficient in two or more languages, consider launching a small business to capitalize on these skills.
Begin by seeking clients on platforms like Upwork and Flexjobs to establish your portfolio. As your client base grows and you collaborate with more companies, consider expanding by hiring other translators with expertise in different languages. To further your reach, actively promote your services on social media platforms.
Only have a limited window of free time daily? No worries. Translation stands out as an optimal side business. It offers the flexibility to tailor client work around your available hours.
4. Website flipping
Website flipping is gaining traction, especially among recent graduates and those working from home. The concept is straightforward: buy an existing website, refine its design and content, and then sell it at a markup.
Read Also: How to Identify a Good Business Idea
Platforms like Flippa pave the way, offering a variety of ecommerce sites ripe for improvement. By investing in enhanced content and smart SEO strategies, you can significantly increase the site’s value.
And the best part? Once the revenue ticks up beyond your initial investment, you can relist the site. This cycle of buying, enhancing, and selling presents a great business idea with rewarding potential.
5. Home-based catering
If you have a knack for cooking and view it as a creative outlet, launching your own business in home-based catering could be a fulfilling venture. Your initial investment will vary. For instance, if you focus on smaller events you can manage yourself, and costs may be more modest.
To kick things off, most home-based caterers set up a website, get involved in local food markets, or join platforms that let culinary experts earn from their skills.
6. Dog Walking
It can be difficult to keep up with a furry friend, particularly high-energy breeds with limited outdoor access. As a professional dog walker, you’ll be helping pet owners in the community keep their dogs happy, healthy, and well-exercised.
Dog walking requires no initial investments other than marketing and business liability insurance. This will protect you in case of accidents, bites, or unexpected lawsuits. It’s a good idea to charge prices that reflect your insurance costs, with the average range between $30 to $60 an hour.
You can establish a presence for your dog walking business on a number of platforms, including Wag!, Rover, and Care.com. Offer promotions for new clients and build a positive reputation by requesting reviews from those you’ve worked with in the past.
7. Virtual assistant
One of the most successful business ideas is to offer virtual assistant services. Everyone from large enterprises to solopreneurs requires help with the day-to-day management of their business. You can use your excellent organizational skills to take some weight off their shoulders.
Of course, you’ll get paid for the time and effort you put into answering emails, scheduling meetings, and performing other administrative duties.
You can land your first few clients by responding to listings on platforms like FreeUp, PeoplePerHour, or Virtual Assistant Jobs. This is a proven business model, as people are always looking for efficient virtual assistants.
8. Personal shopping
Do you have a knack for identifying fashion trends? If friends and family often seek your clothing advice, consider turning that talent into a personal shopping business.
Personal shoppers select clothing for clients who lack the time or inclination to shop. This involves assessing the client’s current wardrobe, browsing various online boutiques, and choosing items that fit their style. The variety of products in online stores means you don’t always have to shop in-person.
What’s more, there’s no specific certification or degree required to become a personal shopper. If you’re drawn to low-investment business ideas, personal shopping could be your ideal choice.
9. Car detailing
Contrary to popular belief, you can turn car detailing from a hobby into a thriving small business. Clients typically pay anywhere from $50 to $400 per vehicle, so with a consistent client base, you stand to earn a substantial profit.
Your marketing strategy holds the key to your success in the car detailing business. Create a website or utilize social media platforms to promote your services, and always encourage happy clients to leave reviews. Consider offering introductory discounts or package deals to entice new customers.
To start, all you need are cleaning supplies and a driveway. If you want to up your game, think about getting a certification from the IDA or attending a craftsmanship seminar.
10. Online tutoring
If you’re an expert in art, math, or another subject, consider starting your own small business in online tutoring. A bachelor’s degree in the subject you plan to teach is usually a must.
Sites like Skooli and Tutor.com are great places to connect with students in need. It’s beneficial to teach topics you’re passionate about and knowledgeable in, ensuring you provide real value.
And with tools like Zoom, conducting online sessions is a breeze. Online tutoring not only taps into your expertise but also stands out as one of the more accessible small businesses to kick off.
11. Greeting cards
Greeting cards are always in style. So, if you have a good eye for design or just love showcasing your artwork on physical items, consider making greeting cards to sell online.
Before you start looking for clients, you need to have a handful of designs ready to go. Tools like Photoshop and Canva make it easy to create custom card designs. Additionally, you’ll need to stock up on supplies required to create greeting cards (ink, paper, etc.).
If you want to keep costs low, consider buying your supplies wholesale. Once you have the inventory, you can start generating revenue by marketing your business on Facebook, Etsy, and other similar platforms.
12. Content writing
Almost every company with a web presence needs help creating content for product pages, blogs, etc. As such, starting a content writing or copywriting company could be one of the most profitable business ideas for you. Popular websites for finding those first few customers include Remote.co, Problogger, and BloggingPro.
You can also join content writing groups on Facebook to get more exposure for your business. To make a good impression on clients, consider offering keyword optimization or custom graphics as part of your services.
13. Homemade products
If you excel at molding soap bars, brewing drinks, or baking specialty products, think about starting a homemade crafts business. It’s more than just a creative outlet. As word spreads, the potential to scale is significant.
Agricultural products, beauty solutions like cosmetics and soaps, and jewelry are among the most profitable homemade items. As most business owners in this niche will tell you, combining raw materials with effort can offer a good return.
Starting out? Consider selling your unique products at the local farmers market. Platforms like Etsy or iCraft also provide great storefront opportunities. To give your products an edge, infuse them with a twist. Think along the lines of dessert-themed bath bombs or pop-culture-influenced clothing items.
14. WordPress support
A lot of websites out there are hosted on WordPress, and almost every WordPress website owner requires support in some form. So, if you’re familiar with the ins and outs of this platform, you’ll have several opportunities to make money.
Clients may contact you to fix their CSS, find and address security holes, and more. While you can use platforms like PeoplePerHour and Upwork to get your first clients, we recommend creating a custom website and listing your services there. That way, you’ll be able to avoid high commissions and build high-quality relationships with your clients.
Hands down, offering WordPress support is one of the best business ideas to try in 2024.
15. Career coaching
With rising unemployment and a saturated job market, there’s no shortage of people needing help finding jobs. If you have a talent for helping your friends and family find suitable employment, you can probably help others too.
Consider starting a career coaching business where you help others figure out what the best career for them is, how to nail an interview, what traits define a good candidate, and more. You can look for clients in Facebook groups or on platforms like Coach.me.
The best thing about this business is that you can make money by conducting four to five hourly sessions a month. Plus, you can coach multiple clients in a single session. If you’re looking for good business ideas that won’t occupy too much of your time, career coaching may be the right option for you.
16. Email marketing
Are you good at writing emails? Have you cracked the code for crafting subject lines that people can’t help but click? If so, you can step into entrepreneurship and make money by launching an email marketing business.
You can find companies that need help with their email strategy on platforms like PeoplePerHour and Upwork, as well as via cold outreach. Once you show your expertise in engaging recipients, clients will see the value in your services and many may agree to the price you quote them. Major brownie points if you can help grow their email list.
Startup costs include investing in email marketing tools, which will automate many of your tasks.
17. Contract cleaning
Not everyone has the time or skills to clean on a regular basis. By becoming a professional cleaner, you can assist home and business owners with scrubbing, dusting, vacuuming, and more, all while enjoying flexibility in your working hours due to the ongoing demand for cleaning services.
Startup costs for household cleaning businesses are extremely low. Cleaning supplies and materials usually cost less than $100, though you might also consider investing in specialty equipment like steam vacuums or carpet cleaners. Setting up a website or social media page can be an effective and low-cost way to promote your services.
The fees you charge will depend on the needs of your clients. While most cleaners charge by the hour, some may have additional expenses associated with certain tasks (organization, deep cleaning, etc.). Don’t forget to register as an LLC and complete all necessary paperwork.
18. Meals to go
There’s a growing demand from those who struggle to find the time to cook nutritious and healthy meals. This trend offers a perfect opportunity to start your own meals-to-go business in your locality.
Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need to invest heavily in a large commercial kitchen. A shared rental kitchen can efficiently cater to a meals-to-go business. These spaces come equipped with essential supplies and can be rented by month, day, or hour. You can find shared-use, licensed commissary kitchens on websites like The Kitchen Door.