Find the Right Biz for You Series (Part 5)
One statement I hear often is: “I want to start a business but I’m not sure what I want that business to be”. If you have that same feeling, you are in the right place. With these first several episodes of this podcast, I am walking you through this process of discovery to help you find the ideal small business for you.
In Episode 001, we discussed the importance of conducting a self-assessment (and how to do so). In Episode 003, I talked about the various business styles, how to generate business ideas and gave you some tools to help you determine your own ideal business. Along the way, in Episodes 002 and 004, you heard interviews with people either reinforcing the discussed concepts or sharing their own experiences. If you haven’t heard these yet, I encourage you to go back and check these episodes out.
Wouldn’t it be great to make 2017 the Year of Your New Business?
In this episode, I am providing my top 10 list of online businesses for people on the move. I created this list initially as a blog post for Sisters in Sports, an online community for wives of professional athletes and college/professional coaches. I am the wife of a college basketball coach and, in the last five years, have lived in five different homes in three different states as a result of my husband’s job. I’ve loved every (almost) minute of this adventure, but also found it took its toll on my work.
There are many other wives/partners in athletics in the same boat – maybe in jobs they couldn’t keep or having their own businesses they could not maintain. Although we hear regularly about professional athletes and big time coaches making six or seven figure incomes, the reality is these people make up a minuscule percentage of this workforce. As a result, it is still important for most partners to contribute to the household income.
As I was creating this list, I started thinking about how these businesses apply to many more people outside the athletics world. These work for anyone who is on the move – military spouses, for example – or anyone who likes to travel and wants to take his or her own business with them.
These are proven, profitable online entrepreneurial ideas that allow you to be your own boss and work on your own time.
The Top 10 Online Businesses for On-the-Move People
1. Virtual Assistant
Most virtual assistants work on a freelance basis, performing many, if not all, of the functions of an executive assistant:
• Preparing attractive presentation materials
• Formatting business correspondence, contracts, and proposals
• E-mail management
• Travel arrangements
• Managing social correspondence
This work may be performed from the comfort of your home with just a computer. Non-urgent work usually may be performed on your own schedule. If you move, it makes no difference to your clients.
You may begin developing this business immediately by:
• Reaching out to people you already know who may be in need of this assistance or who may know of someone else who could use this type of help.
• Working for someone else who runs his or her own virtual assistance service. Typically, these businesses have clients already or have inquiries coming to them regularly so they need skilled, reliable people to do the work.
• Sign up to perform work as a freelancer under an online service such as Upwork, Freelancer, or Thumbtack.
2. Graphic Designer
Are you skilled at designing or creating:
• Logos and brand identity products?
• Business and advertising products such as: brochures, business cards, postcards, website and social media banners?
• Graphic designs for clothing and merchandise, such as mugs, hats, and t-shirts?
• Book or magazine illustrations, invitations, and greeting cards?
• Labels for beverage, food, or retail packaging?
Use those skills online, from wherever you are and whenever works for you. Like virtual assistants, you may hang out your own online shingle or go to work for an already established online service such as 99 Designs or Fiverr. These provide great ways to fine-tune your skills and begin receiving testimonials that will lead to more, higher paying work.
Do you love to work with numbers, charts, and spreadsheets? Are you the person who has to balance their checkbook to the penny? Online bookkeeping may be right up your alley, especially for small business owners abhor this these types f tasks! Knowledge of accounting software such as Quickbooks, Freshbooks, Sage, and Zoho is important to have or to be able to learn quickly.
4. Website or App Design
Even if you do not already have web or app development skills, but think you would enjoy doing this type of work, there are several online programs to help you learn and get you started in business such as Skillcrush and General Assembly.
5. Online courses or eBooks
If you are an expert at something, people likely would be willing to pay to learn from you. There are several resources for learning to create these online products. My favorite is Flipped Lifestyle. You’ll learn valuable tips and resources just from reading the blog or listening to their podcast.
6. Social Media Marketing
Do you have a difficult time pulling yourself away from Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, or Instagram? Have you noticed how prevalent advertisements for businesses and organizations have become on these sites? Many small businesses and non-profits are looking for people who have the time and ability to create and execute their social media marketing campaigns.
7. Online Reselling
I recently found a treasure trove of posters and basketballs signed by famous professional athletes in our basement. These go back to the days when my husband use to run camps for these athletes and would end up with more signed products than he knew what to do with. With my husband’s OK, I posted a number of these pieces online at eBay, sold them all within two weeks, pocketing enough income to pay for our Christmas gifts and travel.
Online services such as eBay and Amazon reselling are terrific for selling gently used or collectable products. Many individuals have created a business from this. There also are apps for selling locally, similar to Craigslist, but a bit safer with a verification process. I’ve been using LetGo to great success. Facebook Marketplace is another local online resale outlet to check out. You would be amazed at the number of people who have developed their own profitable business by reselling their own goods and products they’ve found at garage or estate sales.
8. Etsy Sales
Speaking of online selling – if you have a talent for creating handmade goods from pillows to hats to candles, even furniture, Etsy is the world’s largest independent marketplace for selling your products. Visit the website to get an idea of the wide variety of products offered by people there.
9. Freelance Proofreading and Editing
Are you one of those people driven crazy by misspelled words or poor grammar when reading books, articles, or advertising materials? This may be the perfect income-generating online business for you. An excellent resource for learning the ins and outs of starting and growing this type of business is the Copywriting and Editing for Dummies book.
In fact, when researching any of these businesses, check to see if there is a related “for Dummies” guide. These books are written by top experts in their fields. The content is presented in a fun and easily digestible way.
10. Online Translation and Transcription Service
You may have lived in more than one country and learned more than one language. Have you considered using those language skills to assist others? There is a growing need for this type of work by all sizes and types of businesses, government entities and non-profit organizations. Services such as One Hour Translation and Gengo can get you up and running almost immediately as one of their translator/transcribers.
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Put this information to work for you. Check out some of these ideas if you see one or more that appeals to you.
If you would like more information about how to find your ideal small business, please help yourself to a free copy of my eBook: “Passion to Prosperity: Finding Your Ideal Side Business”. Although it was written with side businesses in mind, the process for determining your own small business is very much the same.
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