When you’re sick of working nine to five for a business that you don’t really care about, or you need to create an income and lifestyle that suits you and your family, there are more opportunities than ever. In this post, we’ll be talking about some of the best ideas to get your business off the ground. Don’t forget, some of these ideas might feed into others to help you build an even bigger business, so pick the ideas that suit you best and start building!
Tech business ideas
2. Create themes and plugins for websites
If you’ve got developer skills, and you can create beautiful website themes or plugins that provide useful functionality for website builders then you can start your business today. Replicate your work on different platforms to earn more!
- Create an app
Ever wished you had an app that did something just so? It is easier than ever to create and sell an app – although there is stiff competition on the app stores. Great user experience and marketing are key.
- Become an app tester
Do you notice those tiny little flaws when you’re using a piece of software? Maybe you are great at spotting errors, and you’re good at reporting those details – if so, you can start marketing your business!
- Become an inventor
This one is probably a slow-burner, but if you are creative and can patent a lot of different ideas, one of them might eventually net you a lot of cash!
- Offer tech support online
Are you one of those people who can fix IT issues and that has the patience to explain it to people as they fix the issue themselves, or remote into someone else’s PC to fix the issue for them? Then you can offer remote tech support to individuals and companies.
- Create extensions for web browsers
Ever used an ad-blocker on a web browser? That’s an extension – like an app for your browser. If you’ve ever thought “it would be great if…” when you were online, then you could create a business making extensions for web browsers.
- Develop software
You don’t necessarily have to have developer skills to create software – the idea, and details about the user experience is the most important thing. If your idea is a winner, you can work with agencies, or use developer platforms to get your business off the ground.
- Offer web design services
It goes without saying that every business needs a website. If you can create aesthetically pleasing websites with a great user experience, you can offer this as a service.
- Offer website testing services
Any new website needs user testing – and businesses with aging websites may need help finding bugs too. This is a meticulous job, but can be a great way to create a business if you know what you’re doing.
- Host webinars
When businesses need their webinars to run smoothly, they reach out to experts for help. If you have the know-how and you’re confident at using the systems, you can offer this as a service.
- Set up a website that requires paid membership
This is likely to be a slow burner, but if you have the ability to create a website that people will pay for membership for, then you can secure monthly income and indulge a passion at the same time.
- Start a blog
There are millions of blogs online today, and there are thousands of ways to monetise them! It’ll take some work, and cross-promotion on social media to help promote it, but this is a great way to create a business with little cash.
- Trade domain names
This one requires a bit of cash to invest, but if you can buy the sort of domain names that might suddenly become popular, then you could find yourself doubling your money or more.
Marketing business ideas
- Affiliate marketing
Can you promote other people’s products? There are loads of affiliate marketing programmes that you can earn commission from, with Amazon, eBay and Shopify being the biggest. Find out more about how it works here.
- Become a brand designer
If you can understand what a brand is aiming to become, and you can create incredible logos and brand assets using specialist design packages, then you have a business ready to go.
- Become a specialist marketer on a social media platform
If you’re a massive fan of a particular type of social media – perhaps newer social media channels like TikTok – then you can help businesses that want to get themselves seen on those platforms.
- Become an online influencer
Whether you focus on one social media channel specifically, or you operate across all the different socials, there are thousands of opportunities to create content and to earn by promoting businesses as an online influencer.
- Create a Facebook group for monetisation
Got a particular interest that you know others do too? Creating a private Facebook group, and inviting members that are into that too means that you can start to monetise it, such as with advertising and affiliate links.
- Create a YouTube channel to start earning
Ever seen a YouTube video and thought you could do better? Why not do it, and make money from it? All you need is a camera (a smartphone camera is enough to start with!), free video editing software, and an internet connection.
- Create and sell mailing lists
You might assume that because everyone has access to details like business addresses online, that there would be no demand for this – but you’d be wrong! Time is money, and very often, marketers would rather pay for a mailing list than spend hours compiling one.
- Create email newsletters for small businesses
Email marketing is often neglected in favour of staying on top of everyday tasks in small businesses – but it is so valuable! If you can create engaging email newsletters, then you can offer that as a service and get paid for it.
- Manage social media for others
Even with social media management tools, keeping up with posting and scheduling can take up time that businesses and busy individuals simply don’t have. Save them time and make yourself money.
- Offer narration or voice-over services
Whether you have a voice as smooth as Morgan Freeman’s, or you simply have a great accent, then put it to work by offering narration and voice-over services.
- Offer paid advertising services
There’s a lot to learn when it comes to paid ads, which is why so many small businesses have agencies take care of theirs. If you know about, and can manage paid ads effectively, you’re onto a winner.
Creative business ideas
- Take photos to sell as stock photography
Advertisers need stock photos when they don’t have time to go and take their own. All you need is a decent camera, and an eye for lighting, and you’re off. Upload to stock photography platforms like Shutterstock.
- Create stock video footage
Just like with stock photography, stock video footage is highly in demand. If you’ve already got B-reel recorded that you’re not using, upload it to a stock video website and start earning – and keep recording to earn even more.
- Launch a podcast
Podcasts are becoming incredibly popular, and listeners want more! If you can chat about your interest, and there isn’t an existing podcast like it, get started! You need little equipment to start with, although as your following grows you may want to invest in more sophisticated recording equipment.
- Alter vintage clothes and sell them
Create one-off designs from charity shops and thrift stores by altering dresses, tops, shirts, and skirts to reflect the latest trends – and sell them from a Shopify website.
- Sell patterns for sewing
If you’re particularly clever with a needle and thread, maybe you create or adapt patterns for yourself? If you do, you can sell them – either in paper form, or at lower cost and effort as print-at-home PDF files.
- Offer personalised cartoons
Can you create cartoons, caricatures and bespoke scenes using pen, paper, or digital ink? The demand for this type of art never ends – make it your business!
- Offer photography services
Weddings, families, pets, life events – they’re all in a day’s work for professional photographers, but there are other niches such as photographing business events too.
- Print clothing on demand
Got designs that should be seen? If so, you’ve got a potential business with very few start-up costs. Printing t-shirts, hats, and hoodies using on demand means that you don’t even need to handle stock.
- Create a 3D printing business
This one will require you actually owning a 3D printer, but if you have one, you can start creating and selling items straight away – and you can offer your creations on your website, on Etsy and on your social media.
- Create art that can be printed on demand
Don’t have space, or access to art supplies? Search online for digital art – there are many apps and ways you can be creative without needing them. The best bit? You can upload directly to print on demand services, so you don’t need to keep stock.
- Sell hand crafted goods
Knitting, sewing, crocheting, woodwork – bespoke, hand crafted items are surging in popularity. Check out Etsy for inspiration, and get to work!
- Create music for download
If you’re a musician that has access to the internet, you can release recordings for people to listen to through streaming services or through your website. It doesn’t have to be songs either – stock music tracks are in demand too!
- Create personalised stationery
Although you might assume that few people use stationery since most communication is online now, the demand for personalised notebooks, letter paper and related items continues. If you can create unique designs, you can profit by offering it using print on demand services.
Business support ideas
- Virtual assistant
Small businesses and busy individuals sometimes need assistance but don’t want to pay a full time employee. By offering virtual assistant services by the hour, you can get paid doing jobs like managing inboxes and booking appointments.
- Offer project management services
Keeping a project on track isn’t easy – which is why businesses employ project managers to plan, organise and direct their projects and get them completed on time.
- Become a telemarketer
This is an old idea, but it is a pretty stable way to create a business. Contacting leads on behalf of businesses isn’t everyone’s idea of fun, but if you’re outgoing and enjoy talking to people, this could be just the ticket.
- Become a mystery shopper
There are a number of agencies that can help you find work as a mystery shopper, and once you’ve signed up, you’ll be able to start work immediately. You might be asked to visit a store, contact by phone, email, social media or by post, and then report back on your experience.
- Become a transcriber
Even with voice-to-text technology improving all the time, there is still no replacement for an actual human when it comes to typing up transcriptions – especially in areas where the local accent isn’t recognised well by computers yet, or where a lot of people are talking at once.
- Create a consulting business
Can you identify where the issues are in a business, and offer solutions to help them run more efficiently? There’s your business!
- Set up and sell ecommerce businesses
There’s a market for starting online retail businesses and selling them on – because those initial setups are time consuming. If you can create a business with everything from email addresses, social media accounts, domain names and product sourcing, you can create a business, creating businesses!
- Do market research
Sure, all businesses can do market research, but it can be time consuming – which means that many businesses choose to outsource this type of work. Fancy carrying out surveys, tests, and holding focus groups?
- Offer a press release writing service
Writing a press release can be daunting – it may be read by thousands of people. Since language has to be flawless, and the legality of anything in the press release may need to be considered, this is a task that is often outsourced to specialists. Do you have the accuracy required?
- Offer bespoke presentation design services
PowerPoint is great, but getting presentations to look perfect and timings to flow correctly can take forever – and the same goes for other presentation software. If you can make stunning presentations, you can offer this to businesses and people that need their presentations to wow.
- Offer customer service support for businesses
Are you great at handling support calls, email requests for help and responding to direct messages? Your business can help other small businesses support their customers!
- Offer editing services
It can be really hard to edit your own writing, since you know exactly what you are saying, and your eyes skip over typos – which is why people turn to editing services for help.
- Offer event planning and support
Event planning is hard – but if you’re super organised and can manage the tiny details that makes an event perfect, then you can offer those skills to families and businesses.
- Launch a HR business
If you’ve got the right qualifications, you can create a HR business catering to the needs of small businesses that have just one or two employees.
- Offer research services
Can you find out everything there is to know about something and then pare the information back to what is directly relevant? There’s your business!
- Offer translation services
Can you speak another language fluently? All kinds of organisations need your help, including hospitals and justice services.
- Offer video editing services
It has never been easier to learn how to edit videos, but the process is time consuming – which is why many organisations work with video editors to polish their marketing videos.
- Secretarial services
Small businesses and charities might only need a secretary for a couple of hours a week – and if you can do that in person for a few different organisations, you can create a business for yourself and they get the help they need.
- Start a bookkeeping service
Even with the rise of accounting systems like QuickBooks, there are still businesses that want bookkeepers to take care of their receipts – so you can create a business offering this.
- Offer lead generation for businesses
Salespeople want to concentrate on selling to leads that are likely to be interested – and attracting those leads can be where you step in!
Teaching & tutoring business ideas
- Become a business mentor
Have you worked in business for years? There are thousands of start-ups and struggling business that could benefit from your knowledge and experience. Start with a LinkedIn profile and grow from there.
- Become a coach
Coaching means different things to different people – but if you have the ability to inspire and encourage people to achieve their goals, whether that is in business, in sport, or weight loss – then you’re all set. Social media channels are essential to build your client base.
- Share your love of fitness
When you love how you work out, why not share it with other people? If you’re an advanced yogi, a keen runner, tennis player, or watersports enthusiast, then you can share your activity on social media and start to monetise as an influencer.
- Become a language teacher
Are you bilingual, or multilingual? If so, you already have everything you need to create a new business teaching others how to speak it. Whether you offer 1:1 tuition, or conversational groups for holidaymakers, you can do so either in person or online via Skype or Zoom.
- Become a tutor
Have you got a degree in a subject that pupils and students need help with for their exams? Can you explain the curriculum so it makes sense? Or maybe you’re an expert in playing a musical instrument? You can create a business by offering tuition in those subjects – either in person, or via Skype.
- Create online courses
This one works well if you’re already a tutor, but if there are fewer people that might want to learn what you are teaching, then you can create a course and upload it to websites like Udemy, or offer it as a paid option on your website.
- Offer personal training
Ideally, you’ll have the right qualifications for this, but if you have a passion for sport and can help people get into shape quickly, you can build a successful business this way.
Service business ideas
- Become a tour guide
If you live in a particularly beautiful, historic, or area of special interest, you can start a business showing visitors around. You’ll probably want to use social media and a website to boost this business idea, and of course, you’ll need public liability insurance, but this has potential to be great seasonal fun, as well as pretty well paid.
- Become an odd-job person
There are so many people that don’t want to do (or know how to do) jobs like putting flat-pack furniture together, small painting jobs, and mending broken things in the home – why not do it for them?!
- Become an Uber driver (or set up your own taxi company)
If you’ve got your driving license and a car, you can get private hire insurance. Start driving for Uber, or set up by yourself. Don’t forget to check local authorities for the required permits.
- Child minding
In truth, this idea only works really if the stars align: you like children, you have the space to entertain them, you have the relevant qualifications, you’re registered with the appropriate authorities, and you have the insurance to cover you. If so… you’re set!
- Offer catering
While you’ll need to have the relevant hygiene certifications, there’s nothing to stop you from starting your business before you have got those sorted! You might not be able to sell your creations, but you can talk about it on camera for your social media and YouTube channel, and start to create the connections you need.
- Dog walking service
If you’re mobile, and you can handle one or more dogs on a lead at a time, then you’ve got a potential business on your hands. Social media is a great way to advertise this type of business, but don’t forget your insurance!
- Create university admissions statements
Can you help students get onto a university course by helping them to write their admissions statement? Whether you help them write it from scratch, or simply offer editing services, you can certainly create a business from this.
- Garden design
Many people don’t know what to plant in their gardens, or what grows well together. If you have that knowledge, you can make use of the garden design apps that are available. You may not even need to do any heavy lifting, if you can make connections with gardeners who will do the work for you!
- Help people with their online dating
While internet dating is easier than ever, for some people it really isn’t – and many of those people are prepared to pay to get help with their search for the love of their life!
- Create a charitable business
Like another idea on this list but want to do good with it? Why not create a charitable aspect, where you donate a portion of your profits to charity, or you donate time? It doesn’t just help those that need it, it makes you feel good, and you can shout about it in your marketing too.
- Create a CV & cover letter service
Creating CVs is tedious, and it can be really hard to make one that stands out. Job seekers need to shout about their skills on paper, and to craft great cover letters to send with their CV. Can you make a starter job sound more impressive – without bending the truth?
- Launch a travel business
COVID-19 shut the world down, but as lockdowns lift and people are travelling again, you can help them create the perfect itineraries for their trips. Know a particular country or area well? Make that your specialism.
- Create a genealogy service
Although there are services that make finding family members easy, some people don’t have the time or the patience to take this as far as they would like. If you have the investigative skills, you can create a business creating family trees for people.
- Offer financial advice
You’ll definitely need the correct qualifications and registration for this business idea – but helping people with their finances can be really rewarding.
- Offer interior design advice
Putting a beautiful home together can take years – which is why some turn to designers, to help get a house feeling like their home much more quickly.
- Start a car washing business
It might be a business favoured by kids everywhere, but washing cars is big business. If you have a bit of land, or you can travel to your clients and valet their cars at their homes, you can earn plenty of money.
- Start a cleaning business
Reliable cleaners are always in demand for homes and businesses – so if your standards of cleaning rival those of Mrs Hinch, you can start your cleaning business!
- Weekly meal planning & shopping
While meal delivery services are rising in popularity, some people prefer to choose their own food. Offer a service that creates meal plans and orders (or goes to the supermarket and delivers) the right groceries for those meals.
- Become a painter/decorator
Painting and decorating tasks are hard work around the home – which is why so many people put it off! If you’re a dab hand with a paintbrush or hanging wallpaper, you can tackle those jobs for other people, and get paid.
- Pet sitting service
If you love animals, and know how to handle all types of temperament, then you can create a business by offering a pet sitting service. You’ll need to be able to travel to people’s homes, and have insurance, but watching furry friends has the potential to be relatively lucrative.
- Start a recruitment business
Finding reliable staff can be difficult – and if you can find the best staff for a position, you can create a profitable business that way.
Business with buying and selling
- Start a business selling
Launching a retail business doesn’t need to mean a warehouse and massive outlay. Using the drop shipping model and services like Oberlo, you can set up a company selling relatively quickly and easily.
- Create a fashion boutique
You don’t need loads of money to create a fashion business. You can create an online store without having any stock by drop shipping, as we just mentioned, and since you don’t own stock, you can update your store whenever you like.
- Become a salesperson
Avon were the first at home sales business, but there are a number of companies now offer opportunities to become self-employed selling. Check out The Body Shop at Home, Tropic Skincare and Nu Skin, or if you’re so inclined, maybe even Ann Summers.
- Offer property management services
House maintenance, letting and administering periodic property checks are all part of this business idea. Find out more details here.
- Create business plans to sell
Some businesspeople want a business, but excel at the day-to-day running and scaling of a business, rather than starting one from scratch. If you’re great at the planning stages but lose interest after that, then start creating business plans to sell.
- Sell start-up businesses
Carrying on from our previous suggestion, if you can get a business off the ground and take care of the time-consuming, but super-important tasks such as securing domain names, social media accounts and so on, then you can sell budding businesses on for a profit using websites like Flippa.
- Sell revision notes
Can you create notes that just make sense? Maybe you made excellent notes for your GCSEs or A-levels – so why not sell them on and get paid for them? Don’t forget to reference your sources.
- Trade used books
While this type of business might take a while to get off the ground, if reading is your passion then there is potential to buy and sell rare copies and to make money from them. You’ll need a bit of space to store them though! s
- Write and sell books
This one will take a lot longer than just a week or two – but once you’ve written a book, you have that forever! You don’t even need a publisher, since you can upload to the Kindle or Kobo stores for people to download. You can offer your book in paperback once you have uploaded to the Kindle store. Write one, then another, and another…!
- Start buying and selling cryptocurrency
Cryptocurrency has made those that have invested in it a lot of money over the past few years. Find out more about getting started here.
- Trade stocks online
Playing the stock market has been popular for years. If you have a little to invest, you can start trading stocks online. Be sure you know what you’re doing before you jump in!
- Become a freelancer
If you have a different type of skill that you can use to help another business, without a contract, then you can start doing that job freelance immediately. There are many freelance marketplaces, including Fiverr, Upwork and PeoplePerHour, and you can offer any kind of skill on them – and your clients find you.
- Become a house sitter
This idea might not be the best paid – but you’ll certainly be able to enjoy the benefits of living in some incredible places at no cost. If you’re in an area where there are a lot of second homes, you might offer property management services, such as stocking kitchens and changing linens for holiday rental properties.
- Fill out online surveys
Alright, so this isn’t going to earn you a huge amount of money – certainly, it won’t be enough to quit your job. But if you need a bit extra, completing surveys is an easy way to make it, because you can do it when you like.
- Rent a room in your home
With the rise of websites like Airbnb, being able to rent a room in your home for short periods has never been easier. Want a longer-term tenant? Offer your room to a local college or university for visiting lecturers or graduate students.
Our final thoughts
There’s a lot of ideas in this post, and not all of them are right for everyone – but we hope you’ll have found inspiration here to start your new business, whether you pick just one idea, or several ideas that balance each other and can make your business even more of a success. All that remains for us to say is good luck!
Last Updated on July 13, 2021