There are countless online business ideas for e-commerce entrepreneurs, but some of the most promising and popular ones include.
Dropshipping: With dropshipping, you don’t need to keep inventory or handle shipping. Instead, you partner with a supplier who ships the products directly to your customers.
Print-on-Demand: Similar to dropshipping, print-on-demand allows you to sell custom-designed products without holding inventory. When an order comes in, a third-party manufacturer prints the design and ships the product directly to the customer.
Subscription-based services: You can offer subscription-based services in areas like meal delivery, online classes, or beauty products. Customers pay a recurring fee for access to your service.
Online courses: If you have expertise in a particular area, you can create and sell online courses. Platforms like Udemy, Skillshare, and Teachable make it easy to get started.
Affiliate marketing: With affiliate marketing, you promote other people’s products and earn a commission on any sales that result from your efforts.
Online coaching or consulting: If you have knowledge and experience in a particular field, you can offer coaching or consulting services online.
E-commerce store: You can sell physical products online through your own e-commerce store. Platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce make it easy to set up an online store.
Digital products: You can create and sell digital products like ebooks, music, or software. These products can be downloaded by customers instantly after purchase.
Online marketplace: If you want to create an online platform where others can sell their products, you can start an online marketplace. Examples include Etsy and Amazon.
Social media management: If you have skills in social media marketing, you. Can offer management services to businesses looking to improve their online presence.
Ultimately, the best online business idea for you will depend on your skills, interests, and goals. Consider what you’re passionate about, what skills you have, and what kind of lifestyle you want to create for yourself before settling on an idea.
These outstanding business ideas offer opportunities for entrepreneurs looking to start something new, whether you’ve run a business before or are looking to launch your first company.
- Many of the best small business ideas involve an online business model.
- Choose a business idea you are passionate about, and develop a detailed business plan.
- Before starting a business, determine if there is a demand for your desired product or service.
- This article is for anyone looking for inspiration to start a business.
If you are considering starting a business, consider whether your idea fills a need in how people live and approach their work. If you can identify an unmet need and a target market, you might have a business idea with legs. But how can you come up with a good idea in the first place? This list of business ideas includes 26 great types of business to help you find success.
Great small business ideas
This 26 great business ideas list will help you start your entrepreneurial journey. Note that many of the ideas below only require you. To have a credit card processing partner to get started, so you can keep upfront expenses relatively low.
Read on for inspiration into the many types of businesses that could launch you to success.
If you’re interested in clothing and sales, consider starting an online reseller business. Although it takes time, dedication, and an eye for fashion, you can create your business as a side hustle and turn it into a full-time resale business You could start using online store websites like Poshmark and Mercari to sell unwanted clothing and items, then expand to your resale website.
Consider shopping estate sales and flea markets for hidden finds at a low cost and then listing them for a profit online You may collect a substantial inventory. Of items in good shape for very little overhead if you’re diligent enough and search the right places.
Pet sitting, Business Ideas
About 70% of U.S. families have a pet. When these families go away for extended periods, your pet-sitting small business can give them peace of mind. As a pet sitter, you’ll watch your clients’ dogs, cats, or other pets at their houses. As part of the job, you’ll need to feed them, give them water, play with them, and (with dogs) walk them as needed. To help satisfy clients, you’ll need to regularly update them on how their pets are doing.
If you have other sources of income that require nothing more than an internet connection and a laptop, pet sitting may be an especially apt small-business idea Almost all pet owners will be glad to let you work on your computer while you spend time at their homes with their pets, meaning that you can run two income streams simultaneously.
You might enjoy launching a T-shirt printing business if you have a sense of fashion (or humor). You can also license and screenprint someone else’s designs onto a blank tee. Either way, if you have space for a T-shirt printing setup, you can easily acquire the necessary tools to get started.
T-shirt printing can be a great e-commerce business. You can allow customers to place online orders and sell T-shirts in bulk. This way, you can sell to customers around the country and even the world.
Cleaning service, Business Ideas
You can quickly turn that into a business if you like to clean. With a few staff members, a host of cleaning supplies, and transportation, you. Can offer cleaning services to homeowners, apartment complexes, and commercial properties. Most cleaning services charge $25 to $50 per hour. Cleaning services are businesses requiring relatively little overhead; you need planning, dedication, and marketing to attract customers.
If you want to differentiate yourself from other cleaning services, consider adding premium options like floor waxing or exterior power washing for an additional fee These services could decide between your new cleaning service and seasoned companies that maintain too extensive a client list to provide that level of cleaning.
The demand for online education has opened up possibilities for entrepreneurs. Since this is an online venture, you can choose any subject you know about and teach a course regardless of location. If you need to gain advanced knowledge in any subject, consider teaching overseas students English as a foreign language online.
As with education, technology allows many bookkeeping services to be performed online. If you are an accountant or bookkeeper wanting freedom. And the autonomy of running your own business, use modern technology to start your online bookkeeping service.
Consulting can be lucrative if you are knowledgeable and passionate about a specific. Topic (business, social media, marketing, human resources, leadership, or communication). You can start a consulting firm independently, grow your business, and hire other consultants over time.
Medical courier service
If you have a reliable vehicle and good time management skills, consider. Creating your courier service – specifically, a medical courier service. As a driver, you would be responsible for transporting medical items like lab specimens, prescription drugs, and equipment. You could start your courier business independently or hire other drivers to work for you.
The healthcare industry is expanding, a good sign for medical courier service job stability. There’s a wide range of client groups your business can serve, including hospitals, nursing homes, labs, and private practices.
If you are knowledgeable and experienced in technology, consider a career in app development. Smartphones are an everyday accessory for many Americans that has increased the demand for mobile apps. Similarly, virtual reality software has become popular in recent years, so there is also a demand for VR app development.
If you have a good ear and can type quickly, a transcription. Service would allow you to work from home with a flexible schedule. Medical transcription services are especially needed as voice recognition technology proliferates for healthcare provider dictation.
You can accept as few or as many transcription jobs as possible. This flexibility can be especially beneficial if you’re not looking to start all at once or have a day job you want to keep. To boost your business prospects and justify charging more, consider becoming a certified transcriptionist and delving into a few specialties.
Medical transcriptionists typically charge 6 to 14 cents per transcription line, which adds up quickly. The typical turnaround time for transcription work is 24 hours, so staying on top of the jobs you accept is essential. However, the ability to receive only a few requests at first means you can scale up as you are ready. Best of all, there is minimal startup cost and overhead. You only need a computer, the appropriate software, and a secure messaging service.
While not required, a medical transcription license can increase your business’s. Competitive advantage while expanding your customer base to include larger companies. Some service providers prefer that their transcriptionists have training from a certified program.
Are they looking for a business idea that can spark joy? Professional organizers like Marie Kondo help people declutter and minimize for a living. In an age of materialism, many people are desperate to downsize and take control of their possessions. Minimalism is becoming extremely popular, but people often need help to part with things they’ve owned for a long time. Part of being a professional organizer is helping clients develop a system for downsizing.
If you’re highly organized and enjoy making spaces functional. And comfortable, you might be good at coaching others to do the same. People will pay you to help them devise a method of minimizing their possessions and maintaining an organized space. To promote your business, ask if your clients will let you take before-and-after photos of the areas of their homes you’ve organized If so, you can use those to create a portfolio that you can put on social media to attract more clients.
Freelance copywriting or content writing
If you’re a natural wordsmith with some marketing knowledge, you can establish yourself as a freelance copywriter or content writer. Many companies will pay for your services, whether you write blogs, web content, or press releases. Increase your value by using SEO knowledge to help clients craft. A strategy around specific keywords that their target audience already uses in their online searches.
Freelance copywriting is a great business because you can work as long as you have an internet connection. It’s a business you can operate from the comfort of your home or even the road if you travel. If you establish a large enough network and gain referrals from satisfied clients, you could make freelance writing your full-time job.
Home care service
A background in care and hospitality can go a long way to supporting housebound seniors who require in-home care. It’s also a service for which demand is only going to grow. According to the Population Reference Bureau, between 2020 and 2060, the 85-and-over population is projected to triple from 6.7 million to 19 million. The global number of centenarians (over age 100) has already reached nearly 600,000. Many will need care and assistance, often in their own homes.
Luckily, you don’t need a background in healthcare to help seniors. And grow a successful business at the same time, although those skills will also be in demand. Many seniors need help with various tasks, like errands or repairs around the house. With some experience, consider growing your business to help seniors transition from their homes to assisted living facilities, offering services such as packing, transporting, setting up, or storing their furniture and possessions.
Senior home care is a rapidly growing industry. As a senior care provider, you can tap into this market while offering seniors premium care and assisting them with everyday tasks.
According to research from IBISWorld, the translation services industry saw a decline in 2020, as did many sectors; however, IBISWorld forecasts a “major uptick” for the industry over the next five years. That projected growth isn’t surprising, as the internet has opened up entrepreneurs in other countries to English-speaking markets and vice versa.
This trend has created an opening for multilingual speakers to offer specific services, such as document translation and the translation of website information into languages for use in other markets. If you’re fluent in multiple languages, you could be successful in carving out a niche in the translation services industry.
The importance of the internet grows with every passing day, but it also becomes more complex for businesses to cut through the online clutter and adequately market themselves. Digital marketing services are always in demand. Yet, many small and midsize companies would instead outsource them than establish a costly in-house team. If you have chops in SEO, content marketing, pay-per-click advertising, web development, or social media management, you could seize a business opportunity that allows you the freedom to work from home.
Digital marketing is essential to any brand, so you must respond to developments in your client’s marketing strategies. Social media management entails watching for comments and messages around the clock, not just scheduling posts with a set-it-and-forget-it mindset. If you enjoy meticulously strategizing and implementing marketing plans, digital marketing could be your good business. Consider also becoming an affiliate marketer, another form of digital marketing.
Owning a food truck
Food trucks come in all shapes and sizes, serving various snacks and cuisines. Take your favorite style of food on the road, and sell your culinary passions directly to hungry customers. Sure, you’ll be working, but you’ll be in a space you’re passionate about, with a chance to connect to people who have similar interests.
Starting a food truck might sound like a wild idea, but the industry is growing. The overhead and upkeep for a car are significantly less than for a restaurant, and you have the added benefit of mobility.
Starting a food truck business can be profitable. However, some startup costs are to consider, such as purchasing a food truck and modifying it to meet local regulations. If you’re interested in serving up smiles with a food truck, get more information in our guide to starting a food truck business.
Lawn care service
If you grew up with a lawn, chances are your parents made you maintain it. For many, lawn care is bothersome but offers peace and serenity. Working outdoors with your hands to tame and beautify the natural landscape can be a rewarding experience. Still, since so many people find the work tedious, it can also be profitable.
Lawn care services require little more than some essential equipment, a trailer, and perhaps some staff, depending on how many clients you have and how big the jobs are. You can grow a small lawn care service into a complete landscaping company by offering premium services and establishing a reputation as a brand that does a thorough job with a smile. This could be your business if you like working outdoors and creating elegant landscapes.
Some states require landscapers, especially those using pesticides, to have a license. Check your state’s requirements to help you determine if you need to obtain a permit for your business’s services.
If starting your own business seems daunting or too risky, you can always use your car to become a rideshare driver. The overhead and responsibility of running the company fall on the rideshare service, giving you the freedom to work as much or as little as you want. Rideshare applications such as Uber and Lyft allow people to start side hustles that pay well and require little more than a willingness to drive people to their destinations and make occasional friendly conversation.
Rideshare drivers have the independence of a small business owner without the heavy workload required to manage behind-the-scenes logistics. If any other business ideas require too much effort or upfront capital, ridesharing is the way to dip your toe into entrepreneurship.
For many people, navigating the housing market is overwhelming. As a real estate agent, you can help people find their dream home at a price that fits their budget. In many states, you must only complete a few months of classes and pass an exam to qualify as a real estate agent Remember that even with a certification, you’ll need strong social skills, so this might not be the route for you if you’re not a people person.
Corporations, small businesses, and sole proprietors all need eye-catching promotional materials, but only some have an eye for what looks good If you have an artistic streak and know how to organize content into a visually pleasing format, start a graphic design business to provide flyers, digital ads, posters, and other engaging visual materials. Graphic design requires only a few physical tools beyond a laptop and a desk.
Not all companies that sell goods store them on-site. In drop-shipping, people who run e-commerce sites go to a third party to fulfill all orders. The third party is likely a wholesale retailer or other entity that runs a warehouse and shipping operation. The minimal inventory and tools needed for drop-shipping make it an excellent startup idea if you’re worried about overhead costs and physical space.
If the gym is like your second home, you should share some of your expertise and help others reach their fitness goals. As a personal trainer, you can offer in-home training sessions catering to your clients’ exercise capabilities. You can also help clients build customized nutrition and meal plans so their diets complement their physical goals.
Many personal trainers start their client acquisition process with social media pages detailing their gym experience along with some motivational quotes. While certification can help expand your customer base, you aren’t legally required to have any specialized training to start this business.
People are constantly applying for jobs, whether they want to make a career shift, increase pay, or switch work environments. Of course, most job applications require candidates to submit resumes to detail their professional backgrounds. As a resume writer, you can help job applicants’ resumes stand out.
You’ll also help your clients create cover letters and portfolios showing the best of their work. You don’t need special schooling to be a resume writer – just essential organizing and proofreading skills. If you know what makes resumes appear professional and ready for employers’ eyes, you’re already off to a great start.
Host a podcast,
Podcasts have become extremely popular, with over 100 million active podcast listeners in the U.S. alone. Best of all, you can start a podcast on any topic that interests you, from business to history to pop culture. Starting a podcast requires consistency, dedication, and a basic understanding of audio editing (and video editing if you want to create a companion YouTube channel for subscribers to follow).
Once your podcast has grown a substantial following, you can sell time to advertisers or establish partnerships with companies that generate revenue. As your brand expands further, you can charge to speak at events or moderate panels on topics your podcast focuses on. Of course, to get to that level, you need to develop a unique idea that you’re passionate and knowledgeable about and then make sure you can relate to your target audience.
Launch a newsletter
If podcasts differ from your thing, but you like the idea of building a robust list of subscribers and then selling space to advertisers and partners, consider creating an email newsletter. More than 90% of Americans subscribe to email newsletters. If you can capture the attention of a particular audience, you can build a substantial following and monetize it.
To do so, develop an umbrella topic you can write about at length and then work to establish a brand voice and mission. Explore the best email marketing software to help you manage your subscriber list and email sends, and then you’re ready to start. Solicit feedback from your audience over time to give them more of what they want and less of what they don’t. After all, their continued engagement with your newsletter is what will help you build it into a successful business.
Do you have a passion for the culinary arts? If so, event catering may be a great business idea for you. Plenty of people need delicious food to serve their guests, whether at parties, weddings, fundraisers, or family reunions. If you have a knack for cooking or baking and love serving hungry guests, event catering could be a fun and lucrative way.
To get started, you’ll need to set up a menu and price sheet and obtain all necessary permits and licenses. Start small to get the word out about your catering service, but when your food speaks for itself, don’t be surprised if your business grows by leaps and bounds through word of mouth alone.
What are the most successful small businesses?
Small businesses that involve website design, a subset of digital marketing, are among those that make the most sales and bring in the most profit. People learn about online businesses more often than via other avenues, so finding clients and a steady income stream is more accessible. Cleaning services and real estate businesses also have high success rates, which makes sense – all people need homes and prefer them to be clean.
Some of the most profitable business ideas are website design, cleaning services, and real estate.
What would be an excellent small business to start?
If you want to maximize your profit while minimizing your workload, try any small business ideas that most frequently prove successful. However, if you’re more interested in pursuing your passions while earning enough money to live, start a small business that fulfills you, requires you to use your skills, and offers you an excellent work-life balance. There are so many great business ideas – and you know better than anyone what small business ideas will bring you happiness, success, and stability.
How can I start my own business with no money?
You don’t need money to become a small business owner. The first step in starting a business with no money is keeping your current job and launching your small business as a side pursuit. Then, develop your business plan and analyze your consumer base, market, and potential challenges.
Near the final planning stages, you’ll better understand how much money you need to make your business a full-time job. You can find this money through crowdfunding platforms and investors. Consider taking out a business loan only as a last resort.
It would help if you also worked with reliable professionals, including attorneys and accountants. Most businesses on this list require particular permits or licenses; legal counsel can help you do it all by the book. Meanwhile, an accountant is critical for managing finances properly, especially in the early days when you’re still establishing your revenue stream. While these professionals represent an upfront cost, they’re well worth it and can help you build a healthy business.
Choose a small business idea with low startup costs. If you still need more money, finance your business idea through crowdfunding or investors.
How do I start a small business from home?
Home-based businesses are the most convenient and manageable ones. That said, not all great business ideas are suited for home offices, so make sure your business can be conducted from home – jobs with on-site needs and heavy in-person demands might not be suitable. In your business plan and budget, incorporate office supplies and tools that make your online business ideas feasible, such as a separate business computer, a suitable desk, high-speed internet, filing cabinets, and a business website.
What makes for an excellent work-from-home small business idea?
A good work-from-home small business idea boasts the following traits:
- Minimal inventory and supplies: Presumably, your home isn’t a mansion (yet), and you have only so much space to store merchandise and supplies. That means lawn care service is a no-go if you want to work from home. The same might be true for T-shirt printing if you need more space to store your prints. On the other hand, copywriting and graphic design require little more than a laptop and a working internet connection, and you probably already have those.
- Low startup costs: Launching a viable work-from-home business should be relatively inexpensive. With minimal storage space, it’s not like you can pile up raw materials and inventory. You might need to buy software or obtain licensure for specific small business ideas, but your financial obstacles should be few and far between.
Computer-based, online work:
- Many of the above small business ideas require using a computer with an internet connection. Drop-shipping, digital marketing, and translation are all great examples. An exception to the rule is pet-sitting if you watch over pets at your house rather than the owner’s home. Then, all you need is a pair of watchful eyes and open ears. You can even do computer-based work while watching the pets.
- Flexible schedule: Traditional office jobs often demand a rigid 9-to-5 schedule from employees. This schedule can feel less essential if you’re working from home, especially when you’re your boss. As such, the best work-from-home small business ideas allow for a flexible schedule. If you do your best app development work at 3 a.m., who’s to stop you?
- Modest collaboration needs: Although remote team collaboration is easy, working from home goes more smoothly when you’re almost entirely independent. A small business where you answer to just a handful of clients and one or two colleagues (if any) leads to greater independence. Then you can work on your terms and see your small business idea through.
What is the step-by-step process for starting a business?
Starting a business takes work, but your company will be up and running quickly with the right tools and guidelines. Although your specific business journey will be unique, we identified a few steps entrepreneurs could take to start their businesses.