Whether you are a student looking for a little cash on the side, or a stay-at-home mom with a little bit of time you want to turn into money, working for yourself in a low-risk business can be a great way to break into the world of entrepreneurship and develop a taste for business. If you don’t have a lot of cash for expensive investment costs, inventory purchases, or space rental, you might think you don’t have any way of starting your own profitable business. But there are many businesses that require little to no money to get off the ground. But remember, with all of these service-oriented businesses, customer service is key. Without a big advertising budget, you are relying on word of mouth to get your name out there. So make sure every single customer is happy so that she tells her friends, who tell their friends, and so on.
Facebook is an invaluable tool in the arsenal of the small business owner. Besides for paid advertising, you can also create a free business page, which you can encourage customers and friends to “like” in exchange for discounts or insider information. It’s a great way to spread the word without spending a penny!
- Even in 2011, you can make a living by blogging. If you are aggressive and diligent about search engine optimization and guest-blogging, you can attract enough traffic to your site to make a tidy income from the ads alone. But don’t focus entirely on the number crunching-the blogs that do best are the ones with engaging, informative and humorous content.
- Are you good at something? Can you help other people be better at it? Whether your skill is marketing, time management, or investing, you can make money as a consultant to other companies. In order to be taken seriously, though, you will need to have a proven track record of success in that area, and a defined plan of how you can help others achieve similar success.
- These days, people will pay good money to have someone come into their house and tell them what to throw out. Professional organizers help people create order in their homes, curb clutter, and create a system that will work for their individual family. If you are good at transforming chaos into usable space, you might have a career as an organizer.
- Although you don’t need any specific credentials to be a tutor, you do have to be able to prove that you are good at the subject you are teaching, or got great marks on the test you are preparing your student for. Tutoring is a good job for a student because it has flexible hours and can often be done out of a dorm room or coffee shop. You can even experiment with virtual tutoring using a webcam!
- Do friends always compliment you on your clothes and ask you to take them shopping? You might have what it takes to be a personal shopper, or “image consultant”. The image consulting business goes beyond picking out tops and jeans, though. You might help a client choose a wedding dress or design an engagement ring. For a bridal image consultant, knowledge of designer labels and diamond prices is a must.
- You can run a successful eBay or Amazon business out of your home with little to no start-up costs. Begin by selling unused items from around your own home. Once you’ve established your seller name and have gotten some good feedback, you can begin soliciting sale items from friends and neighbors, splitting the profits with them accordingly. Eventually, you can even invest in your business by stocking up on a hot-selling item when you see it on sale in a neighborhood store.
- If you have some education or training in this area, graphic and web design can be an easy business to start without much money. You do need a good computer and all the basic design programs, such as Photoshop and InDesign, but once you have those, you can create hundreds and thousands of designs without depleting your inventory! Consider designing some flyers pro bono for a local charitable organization as a way to get your name out.
- These days, concierge services are all the rage among those without enough time to run their own errands but without enough money to hire a full time assistant. Concierge services are simple-you are paid per hour or per task to complete errands for another person. Tasks can range from grocery shopping to dog walking. The great thing about running your own concierge business is that you can decide which hours you are available-making it a great business for students or other people with inflexible schedules.
- Even if you are not a trained home repair technician, you can still open a local handyman business. You can take on the repairs and jobs that you are qualified to do, like assembling furniture and painting, and hire a qualified electrician or plumber for the bigger jobs.
- Even if you love working out and have been doing it for years, you can’t be a personal trainer unless you get certified. But after a short certification process, you will be free to start a personal training company or run workout classes-a great way to make money with a minimal investment!
Guest article written by Houston jewelry store – Whiteflash Inc.