A small business plan can grow bigger with the passage of time. If you are dreaming of owning your own empire, the ideal way is to start small and plan steady growth. Building a successful business takes a host of factors like education, investment, experience, right product mix, knowledge of target markets and so forth.
Every successful business has grown this way and there is no exception. As you ride along, do expect hurdles on the way and know how to cross those hurdles. Obviously, you should have a great business idea that can churn in profits for you. It takes passion, time, determination and in most situations some funding to take the idea off the ground. On that note, let us consider 10 small and profitable business ideas that demand little or no investment.
1. Niche Website
Go through a short learning curve on keyword planning tool provided by Google and identify a specific topic that has high search volumes. This is the starting point for you to build a niche website and rise to be an authority in that space in a short space of time with low competition. However, you should have the ability to create significant value for your target audience. You can start with blog content, images, videos and other forms of engaging content for the reader. This is one way to grow your regular audience and become an authority in the niche. Once your authority gets recognized, there will be many ways to earn money from your website with a good small business plan.
2. Starting an online course
Do you have expertise in one or more specific domains? If yes, there can be an audience willing to pay a fee for accelerated experience in learning that can take them closer to your own expertise. You could be a designer, marketer, writer or maybe even a nurse, retail sales or technician. Your area of expertise is not important, but how strong you are in the given area is. You can teach others on how they can be successful in making money, more money in fact, or advancement in their career or get a quick start within your area of expertise. After you have decided on your area of expertise, you can access online platforms such as Udemy and Teachable for taking your course business off to a flying start in just a few hours. You can also consult some small business consultants for additional help.
3. Selling digital downloads
You can sell digital downloads like in-depth guides, e-books, case studies, templates etc. This way you can comfortably generate some passive income and it takes only a one-time effort to set up the business. You will need a basic website to help the targeted traffic to reach you and also act as a convenient place to communicate with your audience.
Starting a podcast is another lucrative business for sustainable income. Podcasts can be on start-ups, the rich and famous people, new technology, and interviews with well-known people. With focused marketing, you can get a significant number of regular listeners and your income will grow steadily.
Online coaching is another good cheap business opportunity if you have some marketable skill set. There are many people across nations looking for different types of one-on-one coaching in languages, a wide range of subjects and other specialized skill sets. Check out tools such as Clarity.fm or Savvy.is to learn more about this. Your services are generally charged by the hour, and if you are smart enough, you can use the same module for multiple sessions.
6. Online tutoring
If you are a teacher or have the expertise to teach languages or subjects, there are many markets around the globe looking for online tutors. Skype is a popular tool that many tutors use to connect with students and the pay rate can be around $25 per hour or even more depending on the country and the subject/language you can teach. Initially, you will need to establish your credentials and gain ground. You can also examine freelance platforms to find opportunities.
There are many freelancing platforms like UpWork which bring jobs in nearly every category. If you are enterprising you can retain your day job and also do some freelance work during your spare time.
This is by far the most expensive opportunity discussed here. You will need to fork out about $150 if you were to rent even a decent DSLR camera for a weekend. But, if you have the passion and the right attitude, you can pick up the thread in a short space of time and get going. Once you graduate into portrait photography, it will take you to the lucrative market for wedding photography, or specialize in niche photography like newborn photography. Once you get your feet wet, this is also a significantly scalable opportunity. For a start, you can use your mobile phone with a decent camera and go through a short learning curve. Creating a small business plan ahead of starting with this opportunity will help you move on the right track.
9. Refurbishing pre-owned electronics and reselling online
You must have come across several advertisements offering to sell refurbished smartphones at ridiculously low prices. This is a nice opportunity if you have the technical skill to pick up electronic gadgets including smartphones that the owners have jettisoned for varying reasons. Refurbished iPhones are particularly in demand in many global markets, particularly for brand value.
10. Tour Guide
To pursue this opportunity, you should be eloquent, preferably know a few languages other than your native language, have a pleasing personality and know your local terrain very well. If you can add your own vehicle to this business, that would be additional revenue for you. The reviews that the tourists you service leave will gradually build up your reputation and people will come seeking your services.
There is always a long list of similar opportunities and we have focused on some of the top opportunities to help you jump start your small business aspirations.