Countless small businesses start out their web presence using a WordPress hosted website (myself included) before needing to upgrade to other solutions for various reasons. Many of them will pay several hundreds of dollars for someone to get their business idea set up online. If you have the patience to learn how to do it yourself, it’s an extremely valuable skill and can be turned into a very lucrative side business idea—especially if you sign up for affiliate programs with companies like Kinsta, who offer high quality managed WordPress hosting plans that allow you to collect fees from the clients you refer their way. Plus, with the skills you pick up from this side business idea, you’ll be able to spin up other profitable website ideas like my friend Andy’s been able to do with his site, AwesomeStuffToBuy.
What about an online business? Many of the principles discussed above apply to a business that operates solely online. For example, an online business with employees will need to register with the workers’ compensation and unemployment departments. While an online-only business is unlikely to run afoul of zoning laws or signage restrictions, the online proprietor must grapple with sales tax on certain transactions. In fact, the sales tax rules for online sales are often more complex, idiosyncratic, and ambiguous than those that apply to in-store or traditional mail order transactions. Therefore, a conversation with your accountant is advised before you start taking orders.
“Where 10 years ago every company needed a website and five years ago every company needed an app, now every company needs to embrace messaging with AI and chatbots,” said ChatBot expert Murray Newlands. While making a chatbot sounds complicated, tools like Chattypeople allow you to easily build a Facebook bot without having any previous coding knowledge.
Yes, I had a couple golf lessons–but you’d never know it to watch me play! I don’t think I had the right personality for this sport–relaxing and being patient isn’t my thing! But if you have some talent at this challenging game, you can charge some good money and bring your gift to others. Golf is an excellent lifetime sport and people are willing to pay to try to master it!
The list given above applies to any business. However, there are licensing rules that are triggered when a business is operated from a home (or in an area zoned as residential) and special considerations that come into play for the general type of permits.
This year has seen a variety of simple and addictive mobile games such as Flappy Bird. These games often are often downloaded hundreds of thousands of times, creating a large profit for the creators. The most successful mobile games are free to download and then feature in-game advertisements.
Find an audience for your passion or hobby and you’re all set to monetize something you love via a niche website as a side business idea. That of course, is easier said than done, something not intended for the faint of heart. Prepare to invest a lot of your time, but if you can hurdle the steep challenges and positively answer a few key questions on whether the website business idea you’re thinking about is profitable, then you can begin building it.
Kerry Hannon, AARP jobs expert, is the author of What’s Next? Finding Your Passion and Your Dream Job in Your Forties, Fifties, and Beyond and Great Jobs for Everyone 50+: Finding Work That Keeps You Happy and Healthy … and Pays the Bills. Follow her on Twitter @kerryhannon.
You’ll have to decide for yourself when to “formalize” your company by creating a legal structure like an LLC, buying liability insurance, and such. For advice on these matters, you can meet with volunteers at SCORE, and there are even places to get inexpensive legal help. Meanwhile, why not pull out a $100 bill and take a look at what you can do with it.
The region in which a small business is located also affects the average income of its owners. A report issued by PayScale indicated that entrepreneurs employed on the coasts earn more than their counterparts in the South and Midwest. Entrepreneurs in New York, for example, earned a median yearly salary upwards of $125,185, while those in Georgia top out at $75,500.
If you had a knack for standardized tests and had no trouble acing the SAT, ACT or other college exams, why not start tutoring high schoolers as a side business idea? Parents of all economic backgrounds are more than willing to shell out upwards of $100/hr to the right tutor, if it means their son or daughter will get admitted to the college or university of their choice. See this quick checklist for starting an SAT tutoring business from the Work At Home Mom. Whitney over at Rookiemoms also has a cool story to share about a stay-at-home mom making $40/hr helping kids out with homework and turning it into a profitable side business idea.
The main advantage of the subscription business model is that it’s predictable – which is great for creating and sticking to a budget since you know how much you can expect to bring-in each month.Need ideas? Cratejoy has 100 different ideas ranging from categories like beauty, grooming, fashion, gaming, food, pets, and books. It’s how I started my invoice company that I own today.
It is absurd how much money you can make in liquidation! One of my friends made hundreds of millions of dollars as a partner in a firm primarily specializing in liquidating retailers. Typically, a liquidator comes into a business and buys everything that is unsecured. Then if the company is a retailer, they hire the company’s staff themselves to run a going out of business sale. You could specialize in liquidating certain types of businesses or personal estates.
Some local businesses don’t want to go through all of the necessary steps to do their inbound marketing themselves. They would rather have you just do it all for them and deliver leads to their doorstep. If you go into this business I would suggest that you consider building your expertise for a particular industry, instead of a particular location, as the results for a particular industry are more likely to be repeatable.
Naturally, it helps if you already have an online audience you can tap for listening to your regular podcast (like I did), but that hasn’t stopped thousands of people from building successful side business ideas into lucrative podcasts—including Alex Blumberg, founder of Gimlet Media who teaches how to use storytelling and launch a podcast. You can also check out this class from podcaster and entrepreneur, Lewis Howes, about how to make money podcasting as a side business idea, which regularly broadcasts for free on CreativeLive.
As a personal chef, you would spend your time whipping up delicious meals for those who don’t have time to cook but do have money to burn. The best way to make a name for yourself as a personal chef is to offer meals that fit stringent dietary or allergy requirements.
I’m not as excited about the profit potential from podcasting as some other people are. It just seems to me that everyone is doing it and people generally expect podcasts to be free. But if you develop a strong enough following you can sell advertising or sponsorships for your podcast, then you can build a decent business.
Do you love sports? Officiating non-professional games held at community parks and college sport fields can be an exciting way to turn your love for outdoor activities into a profitable side business idea you can engage on nights and weekends.
Our advice is sticking to something you can really shine on. If you’re ultra muscular, videos of you training and instructing can become very popular, but if you don’t have the body or knowledge to show for it, you might become a laughing stock. If you’re an ultra-gamer considering yourself lucky, as the top grossing Youtuber, PewDiePie, is a gamer making 4 M Dollars (estimated) from his Hobby.
People will pay a lot of money to get their dog trained and you can provide the service. To get going you can read a book or take a dog training class yourself. This business would also be a great source of clients for dog walking services, if you want to expand your dog services empire!
Busy schedules can stress people out. It can also disrupt family life to the point that busy parents and homework-laden kids barely have time to prepare decent dinners and weekend meals. Hence, the surprising demand for part-time family chefs as a business idea. If cooking healthy and delicious meals is your thing, then this lucrative side business idea can supplement your regular income by helping feed busy homes. Hear Gaby Dalkin’s story of going from side business idea to full-time blogger while she was a part-time personal chef right here on my podcast.
Today, just a few years later, selling Apps is more competitive. In fact, there are large marketing firms that exclusively focus on marketing apps. Nonetheless, there is still money to be made in making and selling apps.
I’m not getting up on that high ladder anymore! That’s why I spend $200 to have a service clean my gutters twice a year. Considering that even one person can clean several houses a day, you can see that it’s very good money potential. Try really hard to geographically concentrate your gutter cleaning each day. This could be a great weekend business.
Most people, even those many won’t admit it, love moving their bodies. It’s also a great workout. If at some point in your life, you had to hang your dancing shoes for a more sensible office job, there’s nothing stopping you from earning money with this side business idea as a passion project around your day job. Part-time dance instructors get a fraction of the pie that their full-time peers enjoy, but it can add up to hundreds each week if you’re consistent—making for a great side business idea to those with the skills and drive.
In that case, you buy the building and hire a management company to handle the day-to-day hassles. I once tried to sell one of my online businesses to a 40-year old real estate billionaire who started out his business with just a couple multi-family homes.
A friend in Boston made a living doing this. He had lived in the Netherlands and was fluent in Dutch. He contacted companies who sent people to the Netherlands to work and live, and offered to provide not just his language expertise but important information on Dutch culture and living in the country. It worked. If you’re from or have lived in another country, consider channeling not just your language but your cultural expertise into a new career.
The only thing better than the smell of grandma’s chocolate-chip cookie recipe baking in the oven is watching cash roll in as customers order those delectable treats. Home baking is an approachable business idea in that it involves doing what you’re probably doing a lot of, anyway, if you love to bake. You probably have all the equipment and expertise you need to get started.
Many smaller companies would like to find ways to make their processes greener without spending more green. You can help them to figure out ways to improve their carbon footprint without sacrificing the bottom line.
To make delivery affordable for the customer and efficient enough for you to make a decent profit, you may have to service a very limited area. You might start by approaching elderly residents in a housing complex, promising delivery just two days per week in order to process as many orders as you can at once.