Starting your own business doesn’t mean buying retail real estate and hiring employees.
Many of the best small businesses can be run right out of your home – some don’t even require you to leave your computer chair. Many of the best online businesses can be accomplished full-time without tons of startup capital.
Not sure where to start? This article lists the top 10 best home business ideas you can launch in 2023.
1. Build an ecommerce store
Of course, building an e-commerce store is a popular way to run a new business out of your home, and for good reason. It’s easier than ever, and with many tools and platforms to choose from, you can reach your target audience no matter your niche.
Want to sell homemade arts, crafts, jewelry and other knickknacks? Etsy is perfect. Want to sell T-shirts and other apparel or other products? Build a website with web development skills, or hire a development agency to do it for you.
Whatever you choose, you have the power to run an online store and start advertising via Google PPC and social media ads. You can start a dropshipping business with little upfront capital — just an internet connection and good business sense.
From there, you can transition seamlessly into your ecommerce store, one of the best business options in the post-pandemic era.
Consider hiring a graphic design business to handle design choices and digital marketing. Your ecommerce business will only thrive if you have a good marketing strategy.
2. Start an affiliate marketing brand
If you are already a blogger and have a fan base from social media or your online store, you could also start a side hustle and potentially get some passive income at the same time. With affiliate marketing, you can post about products or services from other brands on your blogs.
These partnerships can be lucrative and require no technical labor — no need for in-depth web design or slogging through online courses to learn new skills; all you need to do is build your brand and partner with others.
Each time someone clicks on a linked product and makes a purchase, you get a cut of the profits from that sale.
Affiliate marketing is easier than ever to join, primarily through large programs like the Amazon Affiliate Program. However, while affiliate marketing is cost-effective and easy to start, generating real income from potential customers may take some time.
You’ll also need a blog and people reading it to be successful. Because of this, an affiliate marketing business is best considered a side income stream instead of a primary venture. Still, this is a great business idea for those who want to work in a home office and take advantage of low startup costs.
3. Become a virtual assistant
Have experience working as a secretary, office assistant or something similar? You can do the same work from home as a virtual assistant.
As a virtual assistant, you’ll perform bookkeeping services, organize appointment calendars and help your clients with whatever else they need. You’ll do it all from the comfort of your computer chair, using a headset and sometimes a webcam.
You can make a decent income as a virtual assistant without needing a college degree. However, you’ll charge higher rates and make more money if you have some assistant experience. Be sure to polish your resume before applying to virtual assistant jobs.
4. Become a freelancer
You may have one or more skills you learned from your primary career or college days. In that case, you can earn through gig work as a freelancer.
Freelance job boards like Upwork, Fiverr and more offer plentiful work for those who have the experiences and skills to sell.
For example, you could:
- Offer your skills with freelance writing.
- Try to make it with web development and programming.
- Try your hand at freelance graphic design.
As a freelancer, you control when you work and which clients you provide your services to. Build an extensive enough client base, and you may eventually make more money than you would at a traditional agency or business. Referrals will help you build your business venture, especially for gig workers like freelance writers.
If you’ve ever wanted to be your own boss, this could be the perfect home-based business idea. It may even become a long-term career.
5. Open your home to daycare clients
If your house has plenty of space and you like caring for kids, you can consider advertising your home as a daycare center. Daycare clients, like pairs of working parents, might be more than happy to drop off their kids so you can watch them for a fee if you have good recommendations and reviews.
Like many businesses of this type, your daycare business will take some time to get off the ground. You’ll need to start slow, such as by watching the kids of friends and family members. But once you get some positive reviews rolling in, you should be able to attract new clients from outside your social network.
A daycare facility could be perfect if you can make money without leaving your house. This small business idea is excellent for those needing a business opportunity without startup costs.
6. Monetize your love of animals with pet sitting
Similarly, you can use apps like Rover to advertise your services as a pet sitter, dog walker or animal care provider.
People love their pets, but they sometimes have to leave them behind. You can provide them with peace of mind (for a fee, of course) by offering to watch their pets or host them at your home.
In any case, a pet-sitting business is easy to start and doesn’t require much start-up cash. Usually, you just need to purchase basic supplies to help you care for your client’s pets, like leashes, food and treats.
With the right go-getter attitude and a willingness to walk, you can make a good chunk of income just by doing this.
7. Host guests with Airbnb
Maybe you’ve always wanted to be a hotel host or show off your homemaking skills. In that case, your next home business idea could be hosting Airbnb guests.
With Airbnb, you can either rent out specific rooms in your house or rent out the property entirely for short time frames, such as a few days or a week. Airbnb allows you to connect with potential guests, and it can be an incredibly profitable business model if you have a property in a prime location, close to a downtown metro area or a gorgeous rural area.
Just be aware that this home business idea requires much work. You’ll need to clean up after guests and make sure your property is welcoming to everyone who arrives.
8. Start a podcast
Those entrepreneurs with online brands are well-positioned to start a subsidiary business with podcasting.
Whether you have a personal training YouTube channel or a popular blog about entrepreneurship, podcasting is the “intellectual” medium of the modern age and one worth tapping into. When you set up a podcast, you’ll talk about topics that interest you or your target audience, then post the episodes for listening on Spotify or your own website.
As your podcast becomes more popular, you can eventually attract the attention of advertisers. In exchange for fees, you’ll insert small advertisements in the middle of your episodes, making money and delighting your target audience members simultaneously.
Starting a podcast, like affiliate marketing, takes time to build into a profitable income stream. You also need an audience already if you want your initial episodes to have listeners. If you have know-how in a successful business or niche topic, you’ll be better positioned to capture an audience, too – even if you do this part-time.
9. Offer social media management
Practically every business has a significant social media presence these days. Platforms like Facebook, Instagram and TikTok are vital for connecting with target audiences and consumers. But all that social media activity can be hard to keep track of, especially if a brand wants to post new content regularly.
You can work as a social media manager from home, monitoring, updating and organizing social media marketing materials and responding to complaints or comments. Social media managers are essential customer service and marketing team members, so you can often find work as part of a more prominent company or agency if you have the skills and resume for this role.
10. Run a cleaning service
People with large houses also usually work very demanding careers. They don’t always have the time to clean their properties. Therefore, you can fill that gap and potentially make a substantial profit by running a cleaning service.
Purchase some cleaning supplies and a van or truck, then advertise your services to homes and business owners around your area.
Eventually, you might build a cleaning service business into a larger enterprise with your employees and office. Or you can keep things small and manageable with just yourself; it’s up to you.
Hire a photography business to take good photos and hone your digital marketing skills. SEO will help you bring local clients to this type of business more quickly.
Start a home business today
As you can see, there are plenty of stellar home business ideas you can start today. Decide what you want to do, draw up a business plan and get to work.
Check out Entrepreneur’s other articles for more information about financial topics.