how to start a small online business | beginning a business

Everyone (even kids and retirees) need to have some level of technical know-how to stay competitive and appreciate the marvels of the digital age. Just observe how learning sites like Codecademy, Treehouse, and Udacity continue to grow and you’ll understand the urgency of getting computer training for our generation (thus making it a great business idea to train others if you already have the skills). If you’re a techie, you can cash in on this need by offering lessons and tutorials within your neighborhood or across cyberspace through portals like YouTube or Udemy as a side business idea. You can even set up your own tutorial site with an interface for online payments.
I’ve been a distributor for ABC Fundraising® for over 10 years. My favorite fundraiser to sell is the Scratch & Help® Fundraiser. It’s the best and most profitable fundraiser out there hands down! When my own kids need a fundraiser they use it and its always a huge success!
If you are tired of your current job and are looking for full time work, or if you just want to work a few hours a week, this is the perfect business for you. Earn anywhere from $500 to $5000 per month or more!
Know your competition. If you plan on working from home locally, look around town for other businesses offering the same services or products. You’ll have to figure out if there is enough business left for you in your area. If you plan to work online, you’re dealing with a very crowded market in most cases, so you’ll have to find a way to differentiate yourself from the competition.
The bigger market for this is companies hiring outplacement services for employees they have laid off or fired. Companies hire outplacement services to help out their ex-employees, to show current employees that they are compassionate and to decrease the chances of wrongful termination lawsuits. It will be a lot easier to land your first assignments if you have some related experience, such as having worked in HR or at an employment agency. The real reward in this business comes when you win an assignment to outplace hundreds or thousands of employees that are laid off in a large corporate business re-organization.
Convergys hires home-based call agents to provide customer service support. This company offers paid training, hourly wages, as well as benefits like, paid time off, 401k retirement plan, life insurance, medical, dental, and vision. Convergys only hires home-based agents in the US.
Companies that provide employees with uniforms often also arrange for them to be cleaned and pressed every single day. You can specialize in certain types of uniforms and/or certain types of services. For example, you could rent uniforms to companies and handle all of their cleaning and pressing needs. You could lease or sell uniforms to companies and then either provide cleaning and pressing services or not.
Craft beer is popular today, as are local, independently-owned businesses. If you’re passionate about beer, consider starting a microbrewery that offers unique flavors and quality products. You can experiment with different brewing techniques and conduct taste tests. You’ll also save startup money by opting for a smaller business rather than a large brewery or chain. Choose a lively location and plan your venture.
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Discover your inner publicist. You might truly believe in your product or service, but in order for it to be successful, everyone else must believe in it too. If you’re new to advertising and marketing or you dislike doing the sales pitch, now is the time to overcome such feelings and put on the publicist persona. You need to develop an excellent short pitch to convince people they need your product or service, one that reflects the value, purpose and potential of what your business is offering. Write down this pitch in many ways until you find one that you feel satisfied says it all and is something you can say readily. Then practice it like crazy!
Some people have no time. They may have a job that requires lots of travel or an executive position that has them working around the clock. But you can make their life easier offering personal concierge services!
Create a marketing plan that provides details on the following: your product, pricing strategy, distribution strategy, advertising strategy, public relations, promotions and social media. Don’t work on your marketing communications until you’ve determined your unique selling benefit, target customer, distribution channels and your brand or image in the marketplace.
Override state default rules: each state has laws that automatically govern LLCs in that state unless an operating agreement says otherwise. However, these default rules do not always fit your situation. Therefore, you should write an operating agreement that sets your specific rules for the inner workings of your LLC. [21]
Have you ever run into a work at home typist ad? They read like this: “Home Typist Needed now!” Boy, don’t they always seems so promising? You can’t help think to yourself, is this really it? Can I finally find a free home typist job? 
A photographer, for example, can service a local event while selling prints online through their Instagram account. Coupling your service-based business with physical products can give you another source of income that isn’t directly tied to your time.
As I’ve already covered with TeeSpring, the T-shirt retailing business is worth millions of dollars. But what if you want to do the manufacturing side of things? T-shirt printing turns out to be quite a rewarding business idea for many each year, but can quickly consume much of your side business idea time—so know what you’re getting into before diving in. This multi-billion dollar industry counts big corporate factories as well as home-based part-time entrepreneurs.

Translator’s Town – Read Review – Open worldwide. Pay rate varies — this is more of a project bidding site similar to oDesk or Elance. Pay is handled between you and the person you’re doing translations for.
These companies will do the rest of the digging for you (federal, state and local) and send you all the necessary applications in a tidy bundle, along with helpful instructions on how to fill them out.
This is a great part time business that can pay very good money. For my kids, I hired coaches who were usually still students themselves, and had very little paid test prep experience. But I did make sure to hire test prep coaches who had scored exceedingly well themselves on the exams being targeted. You don’t have to be good at every subject. Just find one exam that you can study up on and excel at, and that’s all you need to become a great test prep coach!
If you want to broaden your services and earn more, you can opt to make the entire house look neat and clean with this side business idea. House cleaning services cover carpets, floors, lawns, garages, windows, walls, and roofs, requiring a whole range of cleaning tools. You can hire maids and janitors to do the actual cleaning while you handle sales, administrative and customer service tasks. Or, you can start small by actually getting your hands dirty as a contractor, learning on the job before launching your own cleaning operations with the help of cleaning business management tools like Swept. Beyond that, I’d recommend checking out Cleaning Zoom’s ultimate guide to starting a cleaning business if you plan on taking this business idea seriously.
If you’re a fitness buff and have the right combination of charisma and business sense, working as a part-time personal trainer as a side business idea can be both physically and financially rewarding. Once you build up a reputation and client base for yourself, it could easily turn into a full-time endeavor for you. Check out these tips to a successful personal training business by the American Fitness Professionals and this interview with several fitness blog owners who are making a living online, from MonetizePros. Finally, I’d recommend checking out this resource if you want to take this business idea seriously and get started with a business plan for your personal fitness trainer business today.
Transcribe Anywhere offers a free introductory mini-course so you can see if this is the best route for you. We spoke to a mom who works part time and banks about $2,000 a month as a transcriptionist.
One major reason why? Technology has enabled the phenomenon known as open innovation to thrive. Open innovation is a paradigm shift that embraces the benefits of transparency and collaboration as they relate to idea-sharing. Dr. Henry Chesbrough, a professor at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, first described the concept at length in his 2003 book of the same name.
Most companies that hire for search engine evaluation have multiple projects available to work on, so the exact work you do might vary. However, search engine evaluation in the traditional sense involves analyzing queries that regular people like you and me might type into Google or Bing search and then determining the best possible results to match up to that query so that users have the best experience possible using a search engine.
The next step in your journey involves choosing a business structure and registering it with the state of Colorado. Registering your business as an official entity is the only way to protect your personal assets and achieve total legal compliance.
If you will sell products, you need a seller’s permit. Your state department of taxation’s website has complete details, forms, etc., if you decide to apply online, but most localities have forms you can complete while you’re at their administrative offices.
I “accidentally” came across this great post. Several of my clients are actually doing business with many of the ideas listed here. My business is to help their business by providing a smorgasbord of services in ONE convenient, trustworthy location. Please visit Jen Williams International at JenWilliamsIntl.com. We’d be more than happy to help!

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  1. You have a passion, and you’d like to make it your profession. No matter how enthusiastic you are about your small business, though, it won’t be successful unless you have a plan in place for how you’re going to start and run it.
    If you tell people you run a lawn-cutting service they might laugh at you, but so what! You can make a lot of money cutting lawns! You can start with one lawn and a second-hand lawn mower, and grow your business into riding mowers, full landscaping services, fancy trucks and trailers, and lots of happy customers! Click here to see the sample marketing plan I wrote for a lawn service business.
    Instead, at least for now, forget branding and unique selling propositions and all the business-identity stuff. And don’t worry about finding the perfect URL or website design or promotional literature. You’re putting those carts way before your business horse, too.
    How will you create your product? Is it a service that you are offering, or if it’s more complex— software, a physical product like a toy or a toaster — how will it get built? Define the process, from sourcing raw materials to assembly to completion, packaging, warehousing, and shipping. Will you need additional people? Will there be unions involved? All of these things must be taken into account.

  2. The question I’m asked the most (by far) when I meet and speak with fellow entrepreneurs is, “How do I know which business idea is best for me?” This one is always quickly followed by, “How do I start on this side business idea while I’m still working my full-time job?”
    While there are all kinds of training that corporations will pay for, I am focusing on sales training because the demand is so widespread. It is an absolutely critical function, even for small businesses. If you don’t have great contacts at larger companies I would suggest you target smaller firms, such as those with sales forces of 6 to 20 people. Small enough so that everyone isn’t trying to sell them training, but large enough that they are likely to be willing to pay for it.
    Craft beer is a booming business: There were 5,234 craft breweries in the U.S. as of 2016, more than double the 2,420 in operation in 2012, according to the Brewers Association. Craft brewers now hold a 12.3% market share in beer, up from just 5.7% in 2011, according to the association.
    Around here we focus our efforts on valuable ongoing education, exploring the newest software solutions for new businesses, and sharing insight from fellow change-makers, ambitious creatives, and innovators. Sound good?
    Successfully starting a small business requires answering as many questions as possible before you open your doors rather than tackling problems after you’ve already launched. Researching the marketplace, writing a business plan and securing adequate capital are the basic steps to take when you start any small business.
    For example, you may have worked with electronics as an employee for many years. You may have noticed a demand in your community for a particular form of electrical work, and combining your experience with the market demand can allow you to attract customers.
    If you already have a website that’s driving in targeted traffic, a great way to make passive income from the content you’re already creating as an easy side business idea, is through affiliate marketing. ShareASale, Rakuten, Clickbank, and Skimlinks are a few of the best affiliate networks and tools that can help you make money from the content you already produce, thus amplifying your side business idea income. Check out this extensive list by Justine Grey, covering the 59 Best Affiliate Programs for Business Bloggers to get some inspiration on how other bloggers are growing affiliate blogs from side business idea to full-time company.
    Collaborating with more established brands in your industry is a great way to achieve growth. Reach out to other companies or even influential bloggers and ask for some promotion in exchange for a free product sample or service. Partner with a charity organization and volunteer some of your time or products to get your name out there. In this article, Business News Daily offers some suggestions for rapid growth.
    #16 – SpectraMedi is an online company that offers multiple part-time and full-time positions for Medical Billers and Transcriptionists. Since the position requires certification, the salary is much more than $16 per hour.
    Fancy Hands – Read Review – US only. Pay is per task and I’ve seen where some people claim they make anywhere from $2 to $10 an hour just depending on what tasks they choose. Pay is every other week on Tuesdays via Dwolla.

  3. Opening up a taco or food truck might not have been first on your list of ideas for a successful small town business, but depending on the location of your town, the seasonality of its residents, and the weather, starting a food truck business can be a great investment. Many small towns have vibrant communities, and often these include outdoor activities such as sporting events, festivals, and markets. Having the ability the drive your business to where the crowds are means major cash in your pocket. Food trucks also have the added benefit that they can be rented for special events. So for a small town that might lack a proper catering service, being able to hire a food truck for your son’s bar mitzvah or daughter’s quinceanera is a perfect local option.
    Want to start a food business? A truck is a much less expensive investment than a brick-and-mortar restaurant, and according to Mobi Munch founder Josh Tang, the failure rate for food trucks is just 10 to 20 percent (as opposed to 60 to 90 percent for restaurants). With the right equipment and some great recipes, you can have your mobile eatery up and running in no time.
    However, there are plenty of reasons you might want to form a corporation, too. Let’s go over the key distinctions between each business structure so you can get an idea of what sounds like the best fit:
    If you want to start a small business, write down your plan for accomplishing your goal in a business plan that includes a description of your business, how it fits into the market, and an operational plan describing how you will deliver your product or service and all of the costs involved. Secure your start-up costs, taking out a small loan if you need to, then find a space to set up your business, market your company, and launch your product or service!
    If you think you have a reasonably good ability to judge which early stage businesses have the best chances to succeed then this is the business for you! However, the odds against any particular venture backed business succeeding are low, so you need to spread your bets widely, especially if you are betting on very early stage companies. To get started you may first want to invest with a group of angel investors, typically plucking down $25k or $50k for each company you invest in.
    Parents and grandparents are only willing to buy their kids so many computer games! What they would really prefer to be buying are beautifully hand crafted vintage toys that the kids can use their own imaginations to play with! Hand crafting takes time, so carefully figure out what interesting toys you can bring to market at a reasonable price.
    Connect and Sell – Read Review – This job involves connecting calls, so you’re not actually having to talk to anyone. Pay is around $9 hourly. They may pay weekly via Paypal. Job is also very rarely open, but when it is, it’s listed under “Phone Administrative Support.”
    Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends, covering entrepreneur profiles, interviews, feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. When she’s not writing she can be found on her personal blog Wattlebird, and exploring all that her home state of Michigan has to offer.

  4. Gabbyville – If you’re a bright, articulate individual with exemplary administrative, customer service, or receptionist experience and wish to join our talented, dedicated team of virtual receptionists, we’d like to hear from you. We are hiring full-time employees. Hours are between 8am – 8pm EST (M-F). This remote position is W2 with ADP benefits, and requires a laptop/desktop w/ Windows 8 or 10. Job requirements our ideal candidate will possess the following: Previous experience in the travel and hospitality industry preferred, strong communication skills, proficient computer skills, neutral accent, and a GREAT ATTITUDE is a plus! With flexible work schedules, competitive compensation and amazing growth opportunities, we invite you to bring your skills and expertise to our team. Please send your resume to career@gabbyville.com.
    On the other hand, if you want to market your own t-shirts you might have more upside potential but the downside is greater too! The brothers who started “Life is Good” t-shirt business for example, lived out of their van for several years until their business finally gained momentum.
    #46 – Crawford Media Services hires independent contractors to carry out metadata writing, SE optimization, and tagging. However, most of their projects are seasonal or occasional. Pay can go up to $18 per hour depending on the task.
    But before you can graduate from side business idea and start earning a full-time living as a graphic designer, you’ll need to build your skills—I recommend starting with reading the foundational book Graphic Design School and Steal Like an Artist, the incredible book by Austin Kleon about how to become more creative. To accelerate your education in becoming a graphic designer even quicker, check out the online courses Graphic Design Fundamentals and The Graphic Design Bootcamp.
    Alterations is a great steady income business, easy to start on the side. Then after you’ve begun to build a clientele, you may want to quit your day job and open a small storefront location. Begin by promoting to friends and friends of friends on social media. I would charge by the job, but carefully estimate how long each job will take you and base your job rates on your time estimates.
    Sometimes I’d do a little touchup work, such as a new wood trim or a coat of paint, occasionally I would contract out an engine repair, and always I would clean them the boats. Like any trading business, you need to find out what sells easily and at what price, and what you want to stay away from. Brand name outboards, specifically Boston Whalers, sold well for me. Sailboats, on the other hand, took forever to move.
    Several of my friends have done this both as a side business and a main business. The ones doing it as a side business have actually done better. I think that is partly because they have waited patiently for better deals to buy.
    Do you play a musical instrument well enough to teach it to others? How about taking your skills at producing music or sound design and teaching others as a service-based business idea based on your experience? Private music instructors in all disciplines charge upwards of $20-100/hr (or more depending upon skill and experience), and you don’t necessarily have to do them in person, either. This makes for a great side business idea that can channel your passion for music into profits.
    When I used to work at CreativeLive, I regularly paid $250-$500 (or even much more depending upon audience size) per episode for 90 seconds worth of advertisements on relevant podcasts like The Tim Ferriss Show, the #1 business podcast right now from the 4-Hour Workweek author, Tim Ferriss. The podcast has even helped Tim launch his latest New York Times bestseller, Tools of Titans to a wider readership.
    I’ve rented boats and bicycles and this can be a decent business. For canoes, you don’t need a waterfront location. You can rent canoes from a highly-trafficked location on the side of the road, and then provide roof racks for your customers’ cars.
    Appen – Read Review – Open worldwide. Pay will vary depending on the job you’re doing for Appen. Search engine evaluators may make around $13 – $15 hourly. They pay monthly via check or direct deposit.

  5. But even if you don’t need an EIN, get one anyway: It’s free, takes minutes, and you can keep your Social Security number private and reduce the chance of identity theft, because if you don’t have an EIN, your SSN identifies your business for tax purposes.
    Reserve your business name. In some states, you can register your business name when filing your articles of incorporation. However, in other states, you must separately register your name before forming your LLC.
    Textbroker – Read Review – Open to US and some other countries. Pay depends on your star rating when you apply. Pay ranges between a seventh of a cent per word and five cents per word at the highest level. Pay is weekly via Paypal provided you have at least $10 in your account.
    5. Capture the big benefit of your concept using a few highly impactful words. This is what I refer to as your ‘one sentence benefit statement.’ It needs to pack a punch! Your goal is to pique the receiver’s curiosity quickly. Yours should make the receiver think: “I want to know more about that.”
    Bring in a professional. We highly recommend hiring a professional to design your business logo. It’s worth investing a little money to make sure you end up with a quality design that leaves a lasting impression.
    There will also be some restrictions based on things like your location, business size/type and the amount of funding you’re seeking. Before diving into crowdfunding, microloans, social lending or any of the other options, make sure you fully understand their implications. We discuss all of these funding methods and more in our guide to financing a new business.

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