Coming up with a lucrative business idea is not an easy task. It’s widely believed that ideas for the most innovative small business startups are generated in a flash of inspiration, but it’s only partially true. A diligent elaboration of an existing business concept can also lead to fantastic results, providing that you are familiar with the sphere and know in which direction to develop further.
Prosperous businesses are built on good ideas, substantial investments, and a commanding knowledge of the chosen field of activity. FINOM has already provided some useful information on how to start a business and develop a working business plan - you can check it out here.
FINOM makes the lives of aspiring entrepreneurs easier by providing a wide range of financial services, including a business account, invoicing, and accounting software integration. Small businesses and freelancers can try out our free Solo plan, which allows for additional functions such as multi-banking and our own bank accounts with local IBAN. If you are a resident of Germany, you can open a FINOM account while your company is undergoing the registration process.
In this article, we will try to outline the most outstanding small business ideas that may come in handy for your next venture.
If you are self-disciplined, detail-oriented, and punctual to the minute, consider the profession of a virtual assistant. There are two options available: you can either become a personal online assistant for someone or start your own virtual assistant company.
Become a Personal Digital Assistant
Believe it or not - even today, when technology rules the world, it’s hard to find an organized person who can multitask. Such a valued skill set can definitely pave your way to success, as there is always someone willing to pay a tidy sum for administrative services. Your ability to adhere to a plan is a genuine superpower, so why not make some money out of it?
A responsible virtual assistant can easily make valuable contacts in an industry; buzz marketing will also work to your advantage. What makes this job even more appealing is that you can set up a flexible work environment for yourself as a digital assistant. That means you can manage your working hours and will never be tied to a single location. You can start your journey by searching for assistant jobs on a freelance platform (e.g., Upwork or Fiverr).
Start Up a Virtual Assistant Company
Establishing a company that offers virtual assistant services is a great business model that has already proved its relevance. Even industry giants sometimes struggle with finding administrative professionals who can help them with routine management tasks. You can make use of your top-notch organizational skills to hire people with a similar mindset - birds of a feather flock together. Here is an approximate list of duties your team of virtual assistants will have to perform:
- Answering emails
- Answering calls
- Scheduling appointments, meetings, or group calls
- Booking hotels or lecture halls
- Making travel arrangements
- Handling other administrative tasks
If you and your team cope with taking some of the weight off big bosses’ shoulders and get paid for it, you can proudly call yourself a successful entrepreneur.
Think about opening an event planning company if you are still clueless about which small business to start. Some people instantly sweep this idea aside due to the widespread belief that this type of business makes you location-dependent. Just a quick reminder: we live in the 21st century, where almost anything is possible. Today you can choose what kind of event planning service to offer to your potential customers.
Digital Event Planning
Many business people don’t fancy being confined to a particular spot, as they rightly believe it limits the possibilities of enhancing their business. Well, in this case setting up a digital company will be a smart choice. Are you a fan of planning, organizing, and making reports? Try your hand at arranging various digital events, e.g., webinars, online workshops, or hackathons. You can charge an hourly fee for your services or sell memberships - it’s up to you to decide how you want to make your money.
Local (Land-based) Event Planning
If you don’t mind putting down roots, establish contact with your local community by launching an event planning company in your area. Conduct careful research on what residents need the most right now, and don’t forget about the benefits of networking. It would be best to decide whether you want to specialize in a specific field or become a professional of all trades. The key to success is knowing your strengths, so choose a profile in which you can do your best.
Remote Event Planning
You are probably curious as to whether there is a big difference between remote and digital planning. Digital planning entails organizing online events only, while remote planning can be employed when holding such events as weddings or birthdays. Today most of the work can be done on the Internet; you can order food, flowers, accessories and give instructions to the staff online. If you are worried that some of the processes can’t be controlled remotely, you can always schedule a few appointments with your customers or employees offline.
Create Websites and Sell Your Services
Quality web development is often recognized as one of the best businesses for startups. Providing you have a sufficiently technical background, you can build websites for others or offer services like technical support for small business startups. It seems incredible, but if you are experienced and hard-working enough, you can be the only employee in your company, and the venture will still be a success.
- Distill your technical skill set and expertise, learn new programming languages and keep track of the most recent innovations - that’s the formula for success.
- Make sure prospective customers, who lack technical knowledge, can grasp the advantages of your service. Learn how to explain difficult things in a simple way.
Consider Website Flipping
Website flipping is a novel startup idea that emerged only a while ago. Some crafty developers realized that buying and adjusting existing websites that need improvements is considerably less time-consuming and more profitable than building websites from scratch. While website flipping might seem an easy, worthwhile pursuit, obviously, you should learn to code in order to perform it. The success of such a business has several prerequisites, so here are some tips you might find helpful:
- Acquire some advanced programming skills;
- Research the market well to define customer insights;
- Gain some knowledge of content marketing, design, and SEO;
- Learn more about techniques that can generate more revenue from the website;
- Earn your profit by listing the websites you’ve improved on a respective marketplace (e.g., Empire Flippers).
Are you a polyglot? Multilingual people who speak two or more languages can monetize their unique skills by starting a translation service. According to data provided by IBISWorld, the industry of translation services has experienced a considerable decline in 2020, just like many other industries did. The situation, however, changed for the better in 2021 and is projected to rebound further. The expected growth is premised on the rapidly booming tendency of digitalization, as English-speaking markets are now easier to access online for entrepreneurs from other countries. It’s high time to seize the moment!
Specialize in a Specific Genre of Translation
Subject matter experts are always in high demand. Imagine how successful your endeavor could be if you have a well-rounded understanding of, for example, psychology and can share your knowledge in several languages. Therefore, filling a specific niche in the translators’ community is a great startup idea for a business. Even if you have a few hours to spare each day, you will still be a sought-after specialist. Start looking for customers on freelance platforms and build a strong portfolio of translations from the chosen field.
Assemble a Team of Translators
If you don’t want to be an individual freelancer, consider building a team of like-minded professionals who can speak several languages, including English, fluently. United by healthy ambitions, diligence, and love for languages, your team can grow a solid customer base in no time.
Running a translation agency requires commitment and patience - just like any other business does. However, if you work hard enough and keep your clients satisfied, your business will develop swiftly, thus, allowing you to hire more translators and native speakers. Once you manage to assemble a team of dedicated and experienced people, you will finally be able to heave a sigh of relief and let your employees take some things off your plate.
Tip: In the first stage, it’s better to make an emphasis on online advertising and social media marketing; it will help you reach target audiences, thus, providing you with your first clients.
Graphic designers stand out among the multiple digital specialists present in the labor market today. This profession is not for everyone, as you clearly must possess an artistic streak in order to create visually pleasant content. What’s more, you must have a relevant skill set and good knowledge of the most popular design tools like Adobe Photoshop or CorelDRAW. However, graphic design has one huge benefit: all you need to enter this profession is a laptop, a desk, and your creative thinking.
A Quick Guide for Beginners
Don’t be discouraged if you don’t have the required skills at the moment - you can always enroll in a training course for aspiring designers and gain experience in the field. Today the market is full of different offers for every taste and budget. The tips given below will work only for those who have already learned the basics of graphic design:
- Sign up to a freelance platform to find a remote job.
- Set your own working hours and stick to the schedule.
- Choose the projects you are interested in and apply for them.
- Build a portfolio with designs you are proud of.
All businesses, from giant corporations to small local startups, avidly engage visual content, so why not use your sense of beauty to provide them with eye-catching materials? You will have to create graphic ads, posters, logos, social media posts, banners, and other promo materials. Keep practicing, make your clients’ products and services look awesome, and you can be sure that your efforts will eventually bring a well-deserved reward.
The Internet undoubtedly takes the leading role in shaping the future of any business. With that in mind, everyone understands the importance of digital professions that will definitely rule the world over the next 50 years.
Provide Digital Marketing Services
Today many modern companies can’t function properly without digital marketing services provided by experienced specialists. Another tendency worth mentioning is that more and more companies prefer outsourcing to digital marketers rather than hiring an in-house team. So, if you know a thing or two about SEO, SMM, or content marketing and enjoy working remotely, consider a business opportunity such as providing digital marketing services to small or large companies. Brands do take care of digital marketing, so you must be ready to respond to developments in the existing marketing strategies of your clients. SMM, for example, entails not only scheduling posts but also watching for comments and messages 24/7.
Become an Affiliate Marketer
If strategizing and meticulous implementation of plans is too much for you, you may also consider the profession of an affiliate marketer. However, in this case, you must possess a digital asset that shows profits, e.g., a YouTube channel with millions of views or a personal website with a good flow of traffic. When you join an affiliate network, you have a unique opportunity to turn your existing digital properties into a reliable source of passive income.
Turning your love for cleanliness into a successful venture is easier than it seems. A cleaning company is not a new idea for a startup business, but that’s for the better: it had enough time to prove its profitability.
Provide Traditional Cleaning Services
You only need a few staff members and a minimum set of supplies to set up a cleaning company in your area. You can offer your services to local landlords even if you are the only employee in the company. However, you will need to hire more people to provide janitorial services to big commercial enterprises. To get this pretty straightforward business noticed, you should do your best to assemble a team of punctual and scrupulous employees.
Spice Up Your Cleaning Business
If you want to differentiate your business from competitors, think about adding some premium services that are not offered by any cleaning company in your city. It could be floor waxing or car washing - anything (that you can really do) for a reasonable fee. By providing unique cleaning offers, you will have an advantage over more seasoned companies that often refuse to deliver services that are not present in their list.
Tip: House cleaning has a low barrier to entry, so you can start your business right away and with little effort. All you need to do is to take care of advertising - consider not only the private homeowners in your neighborhood but also small businesses in the area. Companies usually pay more for a similar amount of work.
Small businesses that involve real estate are often reported to bring in considerable profit. Many people find navigation through the housing market troublesome, complicated, and overwhelming. A real estate professional can solve this problem fast and efficiently by helping people find the house of their dreams at a price that will perfectly fit their budget.
How to Become a Good Real Estate Agent
To qualify as a real estate agent, you need to complete several months of training and pass an exam. However, in some countries (e.g., in the United States), the real estate industry is known for its constantly changing trends, so if agents want to keep their licenses, they are often obliged to take part in ongoing education programs.
- It’s your duty to check what kind of certification you require to operate in your country or city.
- Even certified real estate agents will get nowhere if they are not equipped with basic people skills. Get ready to spend a lot of time with strangers - not all people are friendly, but you must have an individual approach to every client.
- Real estate agents must have a deep knowledge of the property market, collecting valuable information on the area. You must be able to shed some light on such quality-of-life factors as nearby schools and colleges, crime rates, public transportation, hospitals, etc.
- It’s also essential to have a clue about current trends in financing and law so that you can provide your clients with relevant information on the best mortgage loan options, government-sponsored programs, and fair housing laws.
If you have a background in cooking, how about ditching your wild dreams for a food truck? It’s a good startup business idea because you don’t have to spend a lot of money, unlike with a restaurant, and you need no more than two people to run the business successfully. Sell what you personally like the most, even if the idea seems crazy. Whether it’s ice cream burgers or herring sandwiches - you can still give it a shot; people like unusual stuff, you only have to make sure the taste of your food is off the charts.
With a traditional indoor restaurant being limited to a single location, a food truck that can come in all shapes and sizes takes your food on the road; thus, it’s not tied to a certain area. You will be able to serve up your favorite food wherever you want, and the grateful clients will pay not only with money but also with a genuine smile.
Tip: Remember that a food truck is still considered a restaurant, so you will have to become familiar with food licensing in your country before you open up the business.
The pandemic has changed our lives for good. In the new reality, more people have become interested in distance education. If you like to share knowledge with others, but don’t want to become a personal mentor, consider the option of creating your own online courses.
Online courses have gained immense popularity over the past two years. Teach people out there how to be good at something you know; you have complete freedom here and can choose any field and any training method. You will be surprised to learn how many people are willing to pay substantial amounts of money to learn things online. Some of them don’t have an opportunity to attend traditional educational institutes; others simply want to learn at their own pace.
Inventing Your Own Business Concept
Now when we have presented the list of ready-made ideas for small business startups, let’s figure out how to exploit them. Aspiring entrepreneurs know only too well that finding a viable startup idea is sometimes even more challenging than attracting prospective investors. However, practice makes perfect, so with a bit of motivation, you will undoubtedly be able to carve out a beneficial business concept. If you have enough courage to test your business mindset, here are some tips for you to consider.
Employ a Brainstorming Technique
The method of brainstorming is a powerful creativity technique that can be used to generate ground-breaking ideas in a free-thinking environment. To hold a productive brainstorm, it’s crucial to take care of a few things beforehand. It won’t hurt if you answer the following questions in writing:
- What am I good at?
- What do I want to do?
- What do I want to share with the world and why?
Even if you already know the answers to these questions, it’s better not to skip the brainstorming phase. Polish your ideas, choose the most enduring and relevant ones before you proceed to the stage of bringing any concept to life. Remember that you should be extremely interested in the chosen business field, or at least feel comfortable and confident.
Combine Concepts from Different Industries
Every year it gets more difficult to generate a worthy and profitable business idea. Many people lose interest in entrepreneurship activities because they simply can’t come up with a concept to develop. If you are close to despair, try combining two ideas in one, such a technique often gives birth to something really unique, e.g., coffins with plant seeds. This concept was generated as a result of merging two different spheres - burial services and agriculture. You can do it too!
Take Your Interests into Account
Successful business owners are the image of their target client. What does this mean? In layman’s terms, these people produced goods or services they wanted to buy but were unable to find them on the market. Having your own interest is vital because if you have background knowledge on the problem you want to solve, it will be much easier for you to generate a good and viable solution. If you are passionate about something, research the respective market and its vulnerabilities.
Be a Progressive Futurist
IT is a field that develops at the speed of light and proves anything is possible. Ten years ago, one could hardly have imagined that the science of artificial intelligence could be used for fun; today, we have astonishing artwork generated by AI and various apps based on this ground-breaking technology. In case you are into software and computing, research which platforms are popular right now and put some effort into creating a unique solution. Keep in mind that implementing your inimitable idea may be rather time-consuming, but it’s certainly worth it, as you can become a market pioneer in developing the product and be the first to monetize the concept.
It would be a fundamental mistake to think that only artists have creative ideas. As a business person, you must be able to figure out how to apply something “ordinary” in an extraordinary environment. Let’s take 3D printing as an example: it was once used to create simple things, now it’s implemented in healthcare and construction projects. Open your mind to creativity, but don’t forget about common sense to make your idea viable and realistic.
Remember About Funds
When launching a small business startup, you should always keep in mind the funds you are going to spend on it. FINOM combines a business account, invoicing, and accounting software integration that allows small businesses to control funds in one place.
Good business ideas are hard prey to hunt down. However, they could be found literally anywhere: in the field of technology, nature, music, food, culture, languages, or even at your working desk. Once you train your mind to notice the smallest details and hone in your newfound abilities to analyze the world around you, the answer to the question “What can I offer?” will come by itself. If you don’t feel that your imagination is fueled with enough creativity, consider giving a chance to any activity from our comprehensive list. We wish you the best of luck!