Everyone is looking for that perfect business idea that will free them from the shackles of their 9-5 and will lead them to a life where they can get paid to do what they love. There are some great entrepreneurial ideas out there but sometimes, the best ideas are the most simple.
I like to label myself as what most people called a #mumpreneur. I run a business and have 2 children. Finding my purpose and fitting it around my children was very important to me so I ended up creating the perfect work/life balance that worked for me (but it wasn't easy and it still isn't).
If you are looking into starting your own business, you'll be glad to hear that there are things that you can do that don't involve you having to invest in any heavy and expensive equipment. You can find plenty of opportunities that will only require you to have a laptop, working internet connection and a phone. I share with you 8 business ideas you can start from home and who knows how far you can take it? The great thing about being self employed is that you control your destiny.
Do you have one particular skill that you are REALLY good at? Graphic Design? Writing? Accounting? Something else? You could offer your services as a freelancer. Freelancers often get paid a higher rate than those in employment. You can pretty much charge what you want. You can charge by the hour, day or job and there is no intention to work with a client.
You can start you own website using WordPress.org or if you are not ready for that, you can start on outsourcing websites such as UpWork where clients and freelancers are actively looking for clients/work. You can decide when you want to stop taking work to go on holiday and you only answer to yourself.
Are you a people person? Would you say your friends and family find you invaluable when it comes to situations where a supportive ear is needed? Have you considered coaching? Helping others by encouraging them and being a sounding board to help overcome challenges that stop them from achieving their maximum potential.
Coaching is another big thins in this day and age and everyone is talking about how coaching has changed their business. How would it feel that you were responsible for transitioning a person from ok to awesome? Coaching is great if you love working with other people and you can decide how many people you will take on at once or whether you prefer group or one to one coaching.
There is a difference between freelancing and consulting. A subtle difference albeit but the difference is there. A consultant is normally a specialist in a particular field and offers professional advice to an individual/business.
When you are consulting, you are normally requested to offer guidance on a specific issue or concern. Let's look at an example. Let's say your speciality is marketing. You may be hired by a company to conduct activities such as market research, focus groups, studies and questionnaires in order to conclude which marketing efforts are best for the individual/company's campaign. Your work load is most probably going to be long term rather than short term. If you prefer going in and doing the work because you are not good at teaching, consulting may be a good fit for you.
VA – Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant is generally working for themselves and sometimes can be part of an agency. If you have worked in an office environment or possibly worked as an assistant in your past life, you more than likely have a lot of transferrable skills.
Some tasks that a VA may be required to do are; data entry, research, scheduling appointments, diary management, typing documents, social media management, copy writing, proofreading, managing emails, contacting leads, bookkeeping and much more.
The good thing is, you can offer your services and specialise in one thing, so you can advertise yourself as a ‘VA specialising in Data Entry' or however you see fit. The thing is, you will be expected to do multiple tasks but you can set yourself apart by highlighting a skill which may be what someone is specifically looking for. Two awesome VA's you may want to check out for an example are Megan Minns and Indigo Colton.
A brand ambassador is someone who represents a company is a positive way to help increase brand awareness and of course sales. Although you are representing a company, you set your own terms. The more you work, the more you will make. The less you work, the less you make. You will be working with an existing company that most people will already know but in some cases, you are most probably working for a company who is new and is using brand ambassadors to increase awareness.
There ambassador programmes are available in so many different industries, most commonly used in the beauty industry. If you admire a companies products and want to know if they have an ambassador programme, scroll to the bottom of their page and check the links to see if you see any ‘Ambassador' links.
The percentage you made from each sale varies and in my personal experience, I have received commission rates between 30-50%
Examples of companies that have an ambassador programme are;
- Forever Living
If you prefer to talk and review other products rather than make your own, affiliate marketing could be an option for you. Affiliate marketing does not mean a hard sell. Back in the day, if you have an affiliate product on a blog, your blog would be full of click here flashing icons and bloggers constantly drowning you in ‘use this link to buy now' buttons all over their site.
I am here to tell you that affiliate marketing does not have be done like that anymore. Affiliate Marketing can be classy. If you are a blogger and have experience using a particular product/service, you can write about your experiences to inform you readers and add a small link in your post that people can click through to purchase the product. If done correctly, you can do okay from affiliate marketing.
The only thing is, the commission you get from each sale can greatly vary. Be selective about the affiliate programs you choose to follow, it could make all the difference to the quality of your blog.
If you haven't checked out Pat Flynn yet, go and check him out now and see how well he is doing on affiliate marketing.
SELL VIA ONLINE MARKETPLACES
There are so many market places available online. The greatest thing about market places is that you don't have to have your own website or worry about doing any techie stuff. All you have to do update the products and the relevant information onto the platforms and most of the work is done for you. Do not get it twisted, you still have to work and treat it as a business but it is done with less hassle. There are several marketplaces you could sign up to;
There are two ways to sell via Amazon, I have only done one. You can join the Amazon market place so your products get more exposure but you are still responsible for picking and packing. I remember joining Amazon around October for my then retail store and by being on Amazon alone, it tripled my normal monthly sales.
You can also sell via Amazon FBA. This means that you send your items to Amazon and they do all the heavy listing. Why is this better? Well, you know Amazon is know for their awesome delivery time? Same day, two hour windows, next day delivery for Amazon Prime users? People are most likely to purchase an item where they can get fast delivery and having Amazon do that for you is a major boost.
Ebay has been around for so long and I only just recently learnt the true potential. The great thing about Ebay also, is you can dropship so you don't even have to do the picking and packing. Of course if you prefer to do the picking, packing and shipping yourself, you can do that, it's totally up to you. You could start by selling things you don't need around your home and then buy things at a discounted rate and sell on for a profit.
Are you into arts and crafts and making handmade items? Etsy is a great home for you. In my opinion, they have reasonable pricing and they open you up to a whole new marketplace. People looking for hand crafted items. You could sell bespoke jewelry, planner inserts, stickers, vintage clothing and if you market it right, you can make a ton of money from it.
SELL INFO PRODUCTS
It is obvious that the world of online courses is booming and there is no sign of it slowing down in 2016. Whether it's E-books or E-courses, everyone knows something that someone else wants to know. Everyone can help everybody but everybody can help somebody. Do you have a question that people keep asking you? Do you have a skill that you know clearly that you excel at? You could sell that knowledge as an ebook, or online course. The great thing is, you have platforms like Teachable that are free that make it easy for you to get started cheaply.
You can make Ebooks using a plethora of applications such as Photoshop, Indesign, Canva, Pages, Word, Powerpoint (and I am sure there are more that I most probably don't know).
Do you excel in one particular subject? You can offer your services to children or adult learners and set your rate. The great this about tutoring, it has evolved from the days where you had to attend someone's home or they have to attend your home. It can be done through Skype. I did this in Uni and God was it a relief especially during colder weathers when I REALLY did not want to leave my house.
You can set up your own website or use third party sites to get clients. It's all up to you.
So there are my 9 great business ideas you can start from home. I hope these tips have made you start thinking about things that you can do. I am really interested to hear if you have any other business ideas you'd like to share.
My last lesson go today – Don't be a dreamer, be a doer