how to start your own business | small business startup help

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.
Sometimes, Amazon has virtual (or “work-from-home”) positions available to qualified individuals who live in some areas. So if you aren’t near a physical Amazon location, or just want to see if there are virtual opportunities in your area, you’re in the right place.
While you can find terrific resources online about family history, it takes someone to patiently piece it all together—that’s where you come in as the family history writer. Do your research carefully, put it together in a snappy-looking package, be patient in answering customers’ questions, and you could grow this business nicely.
A lot of car repairs don’t require a car lift and you can do them at the customer’s location. Not only does it eliminate the cost of owning a service bay, but it saves your customer the time to drive and wait at a service station.
This is a good solid service business. But it is competitive, you need to have fully qualified service providers, and you need to look into licensing. No matter how good a service you run, when you deal with the elderly especially there is always legal risk. You can mitigate the risk by incorporating, by getting insurance and by being sure your staff follows accepted medical protocols.
Prudential hires work-at-home financial services associates, customer solutions reps, and customer relationship specialists. Prudential offers a comprehensive benefits package for full-time employees.
Fiverr is a great place for first-time freelancers who might not have tons of experience and want to build up a portfolio of their work. You’ll be able to complete simple tasks ranging from logo design, to creating animations, or even drawing a company logo on your forehead. While this side business idea likely won’t be growing into a million dollar startup for you, it can still be a platform for funding your next big business idea. Want to learn more about Fiverr’s history and how to get the most out of selling on the platform? Listen to my interview with Fiverr CEO Micha Kaufman.
Werewolves, step-brothers, and tentacles—the demand is high. As odd as it may sound, if you’ve got the imagination (and a clever pseudonym), you can make upwards of $5,000 a month writing erotic fiction in your free time as a side business idea.
Wines For Humanity hosts wine events and does in-home wine tastings to raise money for various charities in 14 states (over $3.5 million contributed so far!). Our organization is rapidly growing because we offer people a great opportunity to make a nice monthly income while also helping people in need. Below are just some of the benefits to joining our company: 1) Very flexible job! Determine your own work schedule. 2) Make $500 a month by just doing one event or tasting a week. The more events you do, the more you make. 3) 50% off of every single award-winning wine in our selection. 4) Great incentive and bonus structure to earn as much as you want. 5) Receive a 17% commission on everything you promote. Contact ajsteinhart@winesforhumanity.com for more details.
Cambly is an online, foreign language, tutoring platform that lets individuals practice their language skills with a native speaker. Online tutors make 17 cents per minute ($10.20 per hour) talking to paying Cambly users. To get started, you must be a native English or Spanish speaker; you must have a webcam and Internet connection. Payments are made via PayPal.
Bridal consulting/wedding planning seems like a lot of fun to get into, but it is also a lot of work, stressful at times and competitive. Nonetheless an established bridal consultant can earn very good money.
Know someone who rents out property to others? Perhaps they could use a hand managing their property. If so, you can make a decent amount of money on this side business idea with relatively little work on your part (most of the time). It’ll take some hustling and the willingness to be flexible with your schedule, as you’ll be responsible for collecting rent checks, managing repairs and improvements, and simply being on call for emergencies. But, a property manager is essential for most real estate investors that have a large enough portfolio, so there’s definitely merit to this business idea.
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Traveling Vineyard – Pop open opportunity and get ready to change your life one cork at a time. The only real requirement of this job: being awesome. It helps if you like wine, too. Other than that, the rest is easy peasy. Maybe you’re looking for a little extra spending money. Or maybe you just need a reason to get out of the house. Your reason for becoming a rock star Wine Guide is up to you. But the opportunity is all yours—all $30 billion of it. You ready? Let’s rock this dream.
Before you hit the ground running with your Colorado business, you need to have a business plan prepared. A well-crafted business plan is crucial for securing funding and tracking the progress of your business.
Potential customers need to be able to Google you and investigate your business. They need to have digital payment options. They need contact forms and blog-content in some cases to see what your brand is all about.
One of the challenges of running a home bakery will be finding customers. That basically means going out and selling your products to stores, restaurants, cafeterias, caterers or anyone else. You want to find customers that you can service on an on-going basis and that you won’t have to travel too far to reach. You may want to canvas potential resellers even before you decide what products you plan to be baking.
Think about how you can zero in on a specific audience for your products and how the business you build can serve them. If you already have a sizeable audience (a blog, a YouTube channel, or an Instagram account), maybe you can even find a way to base your business off of that existing audience.
There’s a lot of money out there in grants, but writing grant proposals can take a lot of time, especially if you are not experienced at it. Like so many other fields, specialization will help get business, and it will allow you to charge much higher fees. And, as you build a track record of successfully securing grants, you will also be able to charge more.
Bridal shows can be an important marketing venue for the purveyors of wedding goods and services. You could start in this business by helping vendors prepare their display spaces at various shows, and then at some point you may want to organize your own bridal shows.
My father was a business broker for a number of years. The type of business he most frequently brokered was coin-operated laundromats. When you are dealing with the smaller businesses such as single location laundromats, you will need to achieve a reasonably good volume of transactions to make decent money. Another issue in this business is you tend to get a lot of “tire kickers,” who aren’t very serious about buying a business, but can take up your time.
Many businesses and civic institutions need individuals who can clean their offices and common areas outside of normal business hours. If you’re willing to work some nights and weekends, you can build a cleaning side business and get in shape all in one fell swoop.
There are so many possibilities like this. In fact, there is so much opportunity for making good money with little start up cost, that I think people need to get their mindset straight first and foremost. The opportunity is there, but if you’re feeling like a beggar, asking, “What can I make money at,” instead of a success asking, “What do I most want to do that brings me money?” you’ll miss your golden ticket. Come from a place of fullness, confidence, and enthusiasm with an intent to make money in a way that’s stimulating and fun to you, and then just add the business knowledge you need to make a success of it into the mix. If you apply yourself consistently, you’ll have the same successes you see others having.
This is a business you could start in a couple hours with literally zero investment. In the public library on the resort island of Nantucket, I watched a man create a flyer for his walking tour business on a free public access computer. Then he went outside and posted the newly created flyer on the public bulletin board. A few hours later he greeted his customers as they gathered on the advertised street corner, collected their money, and then took them on the walking tour. Not sure how to set up your walking tour? Get a history or even a self-walking tour guide at the public library.
A lot of my friends fly planes. And in many cases their teenage kids do too! They all started with flying lessons. To get certified to the point where you can teach basic flying lessons in a simple, single engine plane, may be easier than you think.

Solid contracts are the foundation of any business transaction. Resolving contract disputes can be very time consuming and expensive.  Here are some steps you can take to try and avoid misunderstandings. Document business agreements in writing. Verb…
It seems that just about every business I’ve been involved in hires home-based editors, who work on a freelance basis and set their own hours. Generally, this work falls into three categories: 1) Developmental editing or making highly substantive changes; 2) Copy editing or wording and grammar improvements; 3) Proof reading. Many editors specialize in one aspect of editing, others cover them all. You may further specialize such as in technical document editing.
Amazon mTurk – Read Review – Open worldwide, but you can’t get paid in cash unless you’re in the US — you have to opt for money in your Amazon account. Pay varies depending on the tasks you choose. Payments are made via bank transfer or you can get money to spend on Amazon instead.
Mechanical Turk operates much like TaskRabbit and GigWalk: it’s a corner online where Amazon gathers tasks to be done, people willing to do them, and people willing to pay for them. On Mechanical Turk, you get to do the oddest jobs you can imagine as an online business idea, made possible by a parallel online universe that runs on hits, visits, surveys, reviews, pins, likes, CPCs, reads, and other metrics. But don’t get too ambitious. The small sums being paid out to human Mechanical Turk users rarely add up to anything seriously substantial, even if you invest most of your spare time into it. It’s a better opportunity for internationally-based people with internet access and lower costs of living than in the US. Here’s one person’s account of his former life as a Mechanical Turk talking through how he got started with  this business idea and what the experience was really like.
S Corp: S Corps require a much more formal structure than LLCs. They’re made up of a board of directors, corporate officers, and up to 100 U.S. shareholders. However, like LLCs, S Corps aren’t subject to double taxation — all of the profits are claimed on the shareholders’ personal taxes.
Assess your financing needs. While starting a business from home can be more affordable than starting a traditional business, you will still need money to get started. As you form your home business idea, think about how much money you will need to buy inventory, buy your production equipment, or cover any other initial costs. If you don’t have a lot in savings, you can also get a business loan to get started, but this would mean qualifying for and then subsequently being responsible for a loan, which can be difficult for a new business. Consider your financing options carefully as you set up your home business.
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.
Don’t be fooled into thinking it will be easy, though: Starting a business requires a lot of time, effort and hard work, and perhaps unsurprisingly, many would-be entrepreneurs end up failing. But if your company survives, the rewards of entrepreneurship are well worth the obstacles you’ll face on the road to success. 
You could dream up your own product to make with your 3D printer. But instead I would tend to create products for other people, and not even finished products, but prototypes. I would develop a specialty within prototypes, such as for a particular industry.
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Resource Recommendation: Check out the free business planning guide that we designed to get you from A-to-Z as pleasantly as possible. We go over creating a USP, developing a marketing strategy, writing executive summaries and a whole bunch more.
NerdWallet’s interactive small-business loans tool allows you to find financing that meets your individual goals. Enter the age of your business, your credit score, the amount of money you need and how you’ll use it. The list of lenders is based on factors including trustworthiness and user experience.