Starting a business from home has a number of desirable benefits for the owner. It offers flexibility. It keeps overhead costs low: no commercial-space rent to pay. Depending on where you live, you might even be able to get tax write-offs when you run a business from home.
If a home business sounds ideal to you, these five ideas may help you decide on what kind of business would be right for your personal needs. They are among the simplest in the world to start:
1) Direct marketing: This is the idea of joining up with an existing company as an independent consultant/seller and selling products directly to consumers. Some of the direct-sales companies that consumers are most familiar with include Tupperware, Mary Kay, Avon, The Pampered Chef or Partylite. However, there are hundreds of direct sales companies that do business in North America, and they market almost every kind of product you can imagine.
When you think about “direct marketing,” your mind may automatically a picture door-to-door salesman trudging about neighborhoods with a sample case and knocking on doors. Direct marketing today, though, is much different. Door-to-door selling is out. Personal networking (both in person and via the Internet) is how it’s done today.
What we like best about a direct marketing as a business at home: When you sign on with a direct marketing company you get everything you need to run your business for a relatively small start-up fee.
You also get built in support, usually through a local management representative, as well as online support. All the start-up work is already done for you. All you have to do is start selling!
2) Internet marketing: This is the idea of selling something, either a product(s) or service(s) using only the Internet. Little to no personal networking or in-person selling is involved.
Internet marketing typically involves starting up Websites and making money through advertising revenue. You can also make money by selling products online, even if you don’t have actual physical products to sell. Instead, you promote someone else’s product. You don’t have to do any producing or shipping. You simply make a commission on each product or service you sell on behalf of the other person/company. This is known as “affiliate marketing.”
What we like best about Internet marketing: Although there’s a big learning curve, Internet marketing is something that anyone with a home computer can do. Plus, you can conduct 90 to 99 percent of your business without having to leave your desk.
3) Art/graphic design: The only requirement for this kind of a business is that you be artistic. If you can draw, paint or some other type of visual art, there is a market for it.
Some of the simplest and most in-demand ways that you can make money at home as an artist/designer include digital design (such as logo and Website design), creating and selling templates (Websites, newsletters), selling original works of art to companies or private individuals and offering art lessons.
What we like best about art/graphic design as a home business: Start up is easy because, if you’re an artist, you probably already have most of the equipment that you need. If you do need to purchase additional equipment, you can probably do so for just a few hundred to a thousand dollars.
4) Home maintenance: Home owners need all kinds of household chores done, and many are willing to pay someone else to do them. The most common household chores that get contracted out include housekeeping, gardening/landscaping, home maintenance and painting.
Obviously you won’t be able to mow someone’s lawn from your own living room. However, these kinds of businesses are still considered “home businesses” because you don’t need rented commercial space to make money this way. Those who want a business that’s easy to run but don’t particularly want to sit at a desk all day are the best kinds of people to do this type of work.
What we like best about a home maintenance business: Start-up costs for such a business are usually relatively low, depending on what kind of maintenance you want to offer. You may already have some or most of the equipment that you need. If not, you can purchase it for a few hundred to one thousand dollars in most cases.
5) Childcare: With a shortage of daycare spaces in many areas, particularly in cities, this kind of a business will fill a big demand. Starting a licensed home daycare will probably require some minor home modifications and the purchase of a home daycare license (some areas require both a daycare and a business license). However, in most cases you can start a home daycare for 300 to 1000 dollars.
What we like best about home daycare: It’s a relatively inexpensive home business to start. Plus, you’re investing in the lives of children, something that has dividends far beyond a simple pay check!