Best Online Business Ideas
The rise of technology and accessibility to the internet has caused online businesses to grow exponentially over the last decade.
As of January 2021, the internet’s population consists of 4.66 billion users.
Because of this, the barrier of entry to creating an online business has become considerably lower.
With such a wealth of options, you may have questions about the viability and requirements to run an online business successfully.
Despite the lower barrier of entry, creating an online business requires a considerable amount of initial work.
Some online businesses are easier to start than others, and most require little-to-no starting capital.
Yes. It is entirely possible to make money from an online business. There are numerous ways to monetize your online platforms.
Anyone can start an online business as long as they have the necessary knowledge and tools. Avenues exist for everyone.
The main distinction between the two is access to traffic:
Online businesses have superior customer reach to physical businesses since customers don’t physically visit a web platform.
Many platforms allow people with little coding knowledge to design and create their monetizable websites.
Popular niches include:
- Sports gear blogs
- Entertainment blogs
- Online pet stores
- Traveling blogs/vlogs
- Conduct thorough research on your niche
- Use a web-building platform to design your website
- Create your content
- Use SEO to improve your site’s performance
- Join affiliate programs
- Regularly publish content to increase engagement
Along with growing a platform, creating a niche website also allows you to earn passive income.
Blogging revolves around creating consistent written content around a niche theme.
With a growing audience, bloggers can join affiliate programs to promote related products and services.
- Personal finance
- Pets and animals
- Career advice
- Fashion design
- Film and TV reviews
- Identify the theme of your blog
- Choose your blogging platform
- Write and post your first blog
- Promote your blog through social media
- Continue to blog consistently to build a following
Blogging provides opportunities to invest in a creative endeavor with the potential to build an audience and make passive income.
Digital products are items that are sold without handling any physical products or purchasing any material.
These products include:
- Digital images
- CV templates
- Educational PDFs
- Research the demand for a digital product
- Create your digital product
- Choose your preferred pricing
- Publish the product on online platforms.
- Promote your product on online platforms
With digital products, you can sell items without the constraints of storage.
Furthermore, with little-to-no production costs, profit margins are often high.
You can even automate your trading process, creating a venue for passive income.
With print-on-demand, an individual can create a design on an item of clothing or kitchenware to have them printed and sold.
- Coffee mugs
- Key chains
- Office utensils
- Personal brands
- Decide on a niche
- Search Google for trends and activity on that niche
- Choose which products you would like to sell
- Create the design for the products
- Advertise the products on your available channels
This industry offers the unique ability to sell customized products without ever handling or storing them.
eCommerce is the activity of purchasing and selling products or services over the internet.
- Subscription content
- Freemium software
- White labeling
- Decide on a product or service to provide
- Research and evaluate the demand for the product or service
- Study your potential competition
- Choose your preferred platform
- Create a business plan
- Promote your business on different platforms
Unlike brick-and-mortar stores, eCommerce businesses don’t require you to pay overheads or keep physical stock.
As well as larger customer outreach, you also have complete control over your working hours.
Subscription boxes are niche-based products packaged and delivered to subscribers over a regular period.
- TV series related action figures
- Vegan snacks
- Exotic condiments
- Drawings and posters
- Choose a niche
- Choose a subscription box model (discovery or convenience)
- Create an online platform
- Create a business operating model that works for your subscription box theme
- Promote your brand
Subscription boxes provide you with the opportunity to create a growing audience and recurring revenue from your interests.
Since the subscription model works on a monthly basis, it provides an avenue of consistent and steady income.
Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) provides the opportunity to sell products on Amazon without worrying about storage or shipping requirements.
- Private labeling
- Handmade products
- Research and decide products you would like to sell
- Create a business model
- Set up an Amazon merchant account
- Create your online store
- Advertise your products on other online platforms
Amazon FBA is one of the most lucrative and accessible online businesses to start and run from little-to-no cost.
If you have extensive knowledge of a particular subject or hobby, you can create specialized courses around your expertise.
Platforms designed to support online course creation include the following:
- Research and observe the demand for your expertise
- Research which platform best suits your style of teaching
- Create a list of learning outcomes to advertise with your course
- Create a structure for your course.
- Decide on a price model
- Film and upload your course
The online education industry is said to reach up to £267 billion by 2026.
This trend indicates that the opportunity to start online courses remains readily available for the foreseeable future.
Affiliate marketing is an advertising model where individuals receive commissions from companies for promoting a product or service.
- Unattached affiliate marketing (affiliates that have no attachment to the product)
- Affiliates clearly have a relationship with the product
- Affiliates claimed to have used the product before
- Choose a platform to post your content
- Create your content
- Use SEO to optimize your platform
- Apply for an affiliate program
- Promote the product on your platform
Affiliate marketing is a low-cost advertising model for both the company and the affiliate.
It takes no capital to become an affiliate and only requires that you build your audience.
Web and App development is the process of designing and building applications for various clients.
- Front-End Developers
- Back-End Developers
- Full-Stack Developers
- Unique blogging websites
- Browser-based gaming websites
- Productivity applications
- Gaming applications
- Choose a development focus
- Use online courses to learn programming languages
- Practice making websites or applications
- Add designs to your portfolio
- Find clients on developer platforms
Website and application development is one of the most in-demand jobs on the market and will only rise in the foreseeable future.
Freelancers are self-employed individuals who provide a product or service to numerous clients.
- Graphic design
- Writing and editing
- Computer programming
- Fashion design
- Jewelry trading
- Web and app development
- Search Engine Optimization
- Choose a craft that you are interested in or good at
- Search platforms where you can provide your services
- Build a portfolio
- Reach out to clients and build a reputation
Once you’ve developed sufficient time management skills, absolute control over your time becomes the most rewarding aspect of freelancing.
Consultants are required to provide clients with information, solve problems and help the client’s business operate effectively.
- Social media consultant
- Financial consultant
- Digital marketing consultant
- Fitness and well-being consultant
- Create a platform that showcases your expertise
- Advertise your services on relevant platforms
- Reach out to potential clients through email
- Build a reputation among your clients
Becoming a consultant allows you to provide value to clients already willing to pay for your service.
You also gain the opportunity to build a reputation in a field of your passion.
This form of media allows individuals to broadcast long-form or short-form audio recordings consisting of conversations or monologues.
- General history
- Physical health
- Mental health
- Lifestyle and motivation
- Decide on podcast theme
- Consider the format of your podcast (how long will it be? Will there be more than one person?)
- Purchase necessary equipment
- Choose preferred podcasting platform
Podcasting allows you to explore and talk about topics you enjoy with potential audience growth and regular income.
Vloggers create short videos to post on platforms (generally social media) for a particular audience.
Essentially, it is blogging in video form.
- Lifestyle vlogs
- Informational vlogs
- Musical performances
- Street talent vlogs
- Decide on your vlogging content
- Purchase a video recording device
- Buy an editing software
- Create and upload your vlogs to your preferred platform
Vlogging is one of the best ways to build engagement towards an existing platform.
There is little to no cost to start; you simply need a video recording device and an internet connection.
Some entrepreneurs will invest in a website to improve it and sell it at a higher price. This process is called web flipping.
- Brokerage firms – Private platforms that connect buyers to sellers
- Closed groups and markets – Platforms including Investors Club, Empire Flippers and certain Facebook groups
- Public marketplace sites – Sites like Flippa
- Research profitable niches
- Build or buy a website
- Evaluate the site’s growth potential
- Create a strategy to generate traffic
- Optimize the website for monetization
Once you invest in a website, you will have obtained a digital asset to develop over time and create substantial profit.
How to Start an Online Business
Your niche can be anything revolving around hobbies, education, products and more.
However, to ensure success, the niche must be in demand.
You must thoroughly research your product or service before placing them on the market.
It is vital that you understand your potential audience and your competition.
You must meet the necessary legal requirements of your business to prevent future complications.
Consider these questions:
Does your business require a license to operate? Do you need to attain permits? Are there regulations specifically for your nature of business?
It is important to consider the viability of your services or products.
Consider how it compares to services and products online that are similar.
Your brand is how your audience and potential customers will recognize your business.
You will need to think about your logo design, business name, and other images and graphics that relate to your business.
Your platform will be where you will establish your online presence.
There’s an abundance of platforms to choose from, including eCommerce sites, media streaming sites, blogging platforms and web builders.
To optimize your online business, it is vital that you learn to utilize digital marketing techniques like the following:
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing
- Search Engine Optimization
- Paid Advertising
As technology grows, it has become more accessible for the average person to start their own online business.
There are now more tools than ever to aid people with little tech experience in creating platforms for their business.
With so much access to software, online platforms and a growing internet population, now is the best time to take the opportunity to start a business of your own.