26 Profitable Online Business Ideas You Can Start Today

January 18, 2022
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Do you wish to quit your tedious 9-5 job and start your own business? One of the best (and possibly easiest) options is creating an online business. However, coming up with online business ideas can be challenging.

The possibility of traveling the world, working from anywhere, and gaining financial independence while managing an online business might be enticing. But, if you don’t come up with an excellent online business idea, there’s little chance of your business succeeding.

Worry not! We’ll help you get started on your dream. 

In this article, we have mentioned several online business ideas. You can go through these options and choose anything that suits your taste and skillset. Let's get started.

Affiliate Marketer

An affiliate marketer is a person who markets products by persuading a target audience with reviews. Affiliate marketers earn commission by recommending products to others.

You may start thinking, am I a good fit for an affiliate marketer? Yes, you can be one if

  • You have basic copywriting skills, or you love leaving product reviews on e-commerce sites.
  • You have a large social media following, which you can influence.
  • You have a verified website/ blog.

Anyone who has a social influence, a blog, or an audience is fit for this role.

Do you have a blog? Do you have more than 5.000 followers on Instagram? If yes, then you should give this a go.

There are three types of affiliate marketing:

  • Involved: You will be responsible for marketing a product that you use and enjoy.
  • Related: You market a product you don't use, like placing product links of things you do not use on your blog just to earn some commission.
  • Unattached: This is your basic pay-per-click affiliate marketing, where you aren't related to the end customer in any way. You get paid when someone clicks on the link you placed on your blog.

Involved affiliate marketing is the best choice for growing influencers and bloggers because it builds a level of trust between them and the target audience.

Want to get started with affiliate marketing? You can partner with Offeo and earn a 25% commission.

Social Media Consultant

A social media consultant is responsible for a company's social media marketing. Most large companies like hiring agencies or full-time consultants for the role, but you work on a contractual basis.

Small businesses often have to handle the social media campaigns all by themselves. But sometimes, it is impossible to churn out content, come up with content plans and post it all by yourself. 

A social media consultant will handle the social media marketing for brands, small or big.

You can step into the role of social media consultant for businesses that need it. But how do you start being a social media consultant?

  • Educate yourself on the topic via online courses on social media marketing from Hubspot, Coursera, etc.
  • Create an online identity for yourself, a blog, professional social media handles.
  • Post relevant information on the topic regularly.
  • Build an audience, and become trustworthy.
  • Search for clients on Upwork, Freelancer, Fiverr, etc.

It will not be an easy process, but you will be a successful social media consultant if you work consistently, adapt, and learn. If you still don't know where to get started, check out these Successful Social Media campaign ideas.

Are you still second-guessing, wondering whether you should be a social media consultant? Well, if you are tech-savvy, love scrolling through social media apps, have a knack for video-making, and like to keep up with trends, then this is the perfect business idea for you.

Social Media Manager

social media manager

The role of a social media manager is similar to that of a social media consultant. A social media manager is also responsible for implementing content strategy on social media platforms. 

But they are primarily focused on creating and managing content rather than planning content and analyzing it.

There is not much difference between the two ideas. So, if you are fit enough to be a social media consultant, you can also be a social media manager. It is just that your responsibilities are going to change slightly.

How can you be a social media manager?

  • Start from the roots, gain some experience in the field.
  • Study social media marketing.
  • Build your online presence - create an online portfolio, LinkedIn profile, social media identity, etc.
  • Keep up with the trends on social media and follow the best people in your field.

Blogger

You may think that blogging is so 2010, but it is not. On average, a blogger earns anywhere between $100 to $10,000. That's a lot! However, do not expect money to roll straight in once you start blogging.

It will take some time to build credibility and start regularly earning from your blog. You need to post consistently on your blog. Your content should be informative, entertaining, and consistent. 

Learn more: Blog Post Ideas: The Ultimate List

Who should think about blogging?

  • Anyone with a writing flair
  • People dedicated to making an income
  • Bonus points if you have a sense of humor.

How does blogging make you money? Just blogging does not make you any money; you need to learn how to monetize it. Here are a few ways to earn money through blogging:

  • First is the tried and tested affiliate marketing that we have already mentioned.
  • You can sell your ad space to other brands looking to advertise.
  • You can sell online courses/ebooks and other digital products on your website.
  • Use Google AdSense for Pay Per Click advertising.

There are plenty of ways of earning through blogging, but first, you need to build steady traffic to your website.

Run an E-commerce store

Another great way to monetize your blog/website is to run an E-commerce store side by side. An online store is one of the most successful online business ideas because online shopping has become the new trend.

But where to start? Many entrepreneurs who want to open an online store don't know how to create one.

To open an e-commerce store, you need to

  • Find a niche,
  • Identify the products you can sell.
  • Use a Web hosting service to create your e-commerce website.
  • Market your e-commerce store on various platforms

There are two ways to run your online store; you can sell your products or do dropship.

In the first case, you have to make the products, manage the inventory and shipping. 

But with dropshipping, the production, inventory management, and shipping will be done by your supplier. It is the most straightforward online business model to follow.

Become an App Developer

app developer

The truth is, the market is crawling with apps as smartphones are nothing without apps. Therefore, if you want to get into app development, make sure you have a unique purpose for it.

To become an app developer, you do not necessarily need to code. But having basic knowledge of software design can come in handy. You can also learn primary programming languages like Python and Ruby on Rails.

If you do not know how to code, you can partner with developers to bring your idea to life. Later, you can sell it on Flippa or similar websites when the app is ready to be used.

Someone who does have the coding knowledge can easily earn by freelancing on various websites like Fiverr or Upwork.

Virtual Assistant

Because of everything that happened in 2020, the concept of remote working has become highly relevant. Companies are becoming more used to the idea of virtual meetings and work from home. So, a virtual assistant is an innovative online business idea.

You will do everything an in-office assistant does but remotely. This role is suited to people who

  • Excel at managing, scheduling, and everything in between
  • Prefers to work remotely
  • Well-versed at administrative tasks.

Becoming a virtual assistant is not all work and no play. There is a bright side to it; you get to interact with international clients, you have the flexibility to work at your time, you can work from anywhere in the world!

SEO Consultant

SEO is Search Engine optimization. Knowing the ins and outs of Google can come in handy. If you have proper SEO knowledge, you can become an SEO Consultant for businesses. It can be a side hustle as well as a full-fledged business.

To master SEO, you need to educate yourself on the subject. You can take online SEO courses provided by Yoast and Udemy to help you learn more about the topic.

However, just having information about Google Analytics isn't going to cut it. You have to use your brains and let your clients know how to use your SEO knowledge to their advantage.

A HIgher ranking means more views, and more views represent more revenue. As an SEO consultant, your job should bring more eyeballs to the site and improve search rankings.

Tutoring Business

Tutoring isn't limited to the real physical world anymore. Thanks to Google Meet, Zoom, and Skype, we can easily hold online classes. The online tutoring business can be a lucrative business idea if you’re able to hook students in.

Many people want to learn new skills or enjoy a one-on-one teaching experience. You can teach these people virtually. How to start a tutoring business?

  • Identify what subjects you are good at. It could be anything from health and fitness or even maths.
  • Craft a course.
  • Sell it on websites like Udemy, Skillshare, etc.

Tutoring is best suited for people with vast knowledge of specific subjects. If you are an expert at something, know how to teach, and run a zoom meeting, you can be an online tutor. 

Finding potential customers will be even easier if you already have an e-commerce website or a blog. 

Small business consultant

Being a consultant is not for the faint-hearted. To be a consultant in any field, you need relevant experience, even if you want to be a small business consultant.

Small businesses are run mainly by one person or small teams. It becomes hard for a small business owner to make crucial decisions without any advice.

Being a small business consultant means you will have to guide the owners to success.

  • Help them with decision making
  • Put their business on the radar through marketing
  • Advise them on building brands.

You can use LinkedIn, Instagram, and other social networks to search for small businesses that need you. It will be a tough road, but you can build a successful online business by being a small business consultant if you work hard.

Handmade craftsman

handmade craftsman

The post-modern generation may love mass-produced stuff, but there is still a section of people out there who love handmade goods. Etsy, Artfire, and Indiemade have made it easy for artisans to sell their goods.

There are plenty of things you can make and sell online. From woven sweaters to handmade pen stands, you can sell anything online. If you are good at making handmade crafts, you can sell them online through these platforms.

How to start selling online as a handmade craftsman

  • Learn a new skill (Kudos if you already know how to knit, weave or create handmade goods)
  • Set up an e-commerce store on Etsy or its alternatives.
  • Purchase the raw materials
  • Start the production
  • Promote your goods on social media
  • Attend local craft fairs

To make a profit, you need to sell goods that have less production time. You don't want to waste time and money creating products that don't sell. So make sure you follow to make to the order policy.

Web designer or web developer

There is massive scope for web developers in today's market. Web developers make everything you see on a website from scratch. So, if you are interested in creating websites, you can be a web designer.

However, you need to know to code to be a web designer. Without basic coding knowledge, you can't get started.

Many online learning websites offer coding courses like Udemy and Coursera. Make use of free online courses and learn the tricks of the trade.

Web designing is a future-proof business idea because websites are online real estate that won't be going out of fashion anytime soon. Being a web developer is going to help you earn big bucks.

Dropshipping

Difference between traditional online store vs dropshipping store

Do you want to open an e-commerce store but have no idea where to start? Many young entrepreneurs have turned towards dropshipping to build a successful online business. 

However, you need to keep in mind that the dropshipping e-commerce model is different from the traditional e-commerce model.

A dropshipping business means when the online store owner does not need to manufacture the products but depends on the supplier for inventory, shipping, and returns.

Dropshipping model is convenient for new business owners. How?

  • You do not have to keep the products in stock. The supplier does inventory management.
  • You do not have to pack and ship the products.
  • You can let the supplier handle the customer service and returns as well.

In simple words, you only curate products to showcase in your online store and take orders. The rest of the process, from packaging to shipping, is carried out by your supplier.

If you quote higher prices than the supplier, it can be a profitable online business: the larger the profit margin, the better for you.

Learn more: How To Start A Successful Dropshipping Business In 2022

Create a Podcast network

Starting a podcast network is just like creating your blog. The only difference is instead of just writing; you will also be talking and recording. It is one of the creative online business ideas that need a lot of brainstorming.

Are you someone who has a knack for writing? Do you listen to podcasts a lot, and think "I could do better than that"?

Then you should probably start a podcast network. Here is how you can create a podcast network

  1. Jot down the topics that interest you.
  2. Decide on a show theme/ format and length.
  3. Choose high-quality equipment for recording.
  4. Write down the script.
  5. Create or choose the music for the podcast.
  6. Submit your podcast to iTunes or Spotify.

Just like blogging, Podcasts take time. You won't instantly become successful. But keep at it, and you will see great results.

Upload Digital courses

Online businesses don't always mean selling physical products. As we mentioned in the previous section, you can also start a podcast. There is no limit to what you can do. Selling online courses is a great online business idea.

You can create digital courses around it and upload them if you have particular expertise. You can also use this small online business idea and build your course.

One of the best examples of people who made money with digital courses is Derek Helpern, where he makes a living out of teaching people how to sell. 

Building an online course is no easy task. Here is what you can do to get started.

  1. Choose a topic that interests you as well as your target audience.
  2. Research the topic extensively.
  3. Write down the course outline.
  4. Test out the idea with free courses and classes.
  5. Write down the course.
  6. Record it and then upload it.
  7. Promote it on various platforms.

Selling an online course is like digitalizing your expertise and monetizing it. It is one of the best online business ideas because it requires zero to minimum investment and has tremendous returns. Moreover, you build a business on something you already know.

Create a YouTube Channel

Youtube offers an incredible opportunity to start an online business. All you need is a camera, and you can get started almost immediately!

 How to start a Youtube channel?

  1. You need to log in/ sign up to Youtube to create a channel. It is free.
  2. Buy some essential production equipment like a camera, lights, and mic.
  3. Decide the type of content you will generate -music, parodies, entertaining facts, social experiments, reviews, etc.
  4. Start producing content.
Youtube channel example

With AdSense, you can start monetizing your YouTube channel. You can use Youtube ads to earn money; you can partner up with brands to advertise their products. However, just like all profitable online businesses, you need to be patient for your channel to grow.

Learn more: 29 Best YouTube Tools to Help You Conquer 2022

Technical writer

What's better than writing from the comfort of your home and getting paid for it? Whoever said writers don't make much must come from the ice age. Because in this age of social media and websites, online content has become crucial for brands.

Being a technical writer means being an SME (subject matter expert). Do you have any domain knowledge and are excellent with words that can convince people? 

If yes, then you can be a technical writer. You do not necessarily need to get a job as a technical writer, but you can be a writer who offers B2B writing services or a SAAS expert.

Technical writers are hard to come by, and that's why being one puts you at an advantage.

Become a Freelance Writer, Web Developer, or Designer

Being a freelancer has become the new job trend to try out. Earlier, being a freelancer was only an option for students and part-timers. But in recent years, freelancing is becoming the new normal.

Why freelance?

  • Freelancing gives you the flexibility to work at your hours.
  • You can quickly build a strong portfolio by freelancing because you can work for multiple clients.
  • Freelancing gives you the freedom to pick your projects.

Freelance Writer

Brands need writers to produce content for their websites, Youtube channels, and social media. Other than writing for brands, you can also do ghostwriting. 

If you have a way with words, then being a writer is a profitable business idea you can try out.

Where to begin?

  1. Start by searching for clients who may need your services on Facebook groups, Freelancer, LinkedIn, and other websites.
  2. Create a strong portfolio of your best articles and share them with prospective clients.
  3. Do not be afraid to quote your price because you know your writing's worth. However, be reasonable.

There are websites like Freelancer, Upwork, and Fiverr where you can find plenty of opportunities. Remember, few high-paying clients are better than catering to many low-paying clients who drain you.

Freelance Web Developer and Web Designer

We have already talked about being a web developer earlier in the post. A freelance web developer has a similar role but works freelance. Freelancing means you are not bound to work with one company but can work with multiple clients according to your skills and availability.

If you do not have the skills for the job, do not fret. You can quickly learn web designing and the basics of coding online. There are plenty of courses available on the internet to help you. However, if you know the basics of web design and know the subject, all you need to do is perfect your skills.

Online fitness trainer

online fitness trainer

Fitness is not just a trend right now; everyone wants to take care of their bodies from young to old. However, it isn't easy to start the journey on your own. People need external guidance and a trainer to guide them towards their goals.

Are you into fitness? Do you work out regularly? Do you think you can guide people in their fitness journey? Then yes, being a fitness trainer is the best option for you.

How do you become an online fitness trainer?

  • The best place to start is Youtube; you can share fitness/workout videos with your viewers.¬†
  • You can also use Twitch, Discord, or even Instagram.¬†

But the question remains how to earn money as an online fitness trainer? Once you have built an audience, release an app that provides exclusive content and meal plans.

Ebook Writing

While people may assume that reading is an archaic habit, it is the most sophisticated habit a person can have. Thanks to Kindle and OTT platforms, books finally get the limelight they deserve.

Anyone with a writing flair and patience can quickly write a book. Ebook writing is a great online business idea because you can start with zero investment. All you need is an idea and your brain.

Don't know what kind of ebook to write? Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Inspirational story ebook.
  • How to/ tutorial ebooks
  • Step by step guides.
  • Manuals, etc

Open an Online T-Shirt Shop

While other business ideas may be a hit and miss, opening an online t-shirt shop is always going to be a hit. Why? Because t-shirts are evergreen, they never go out of style. To open an online t-shirt shop, you need-

  • An e-commerce website for your store. (Shopify, Etsy or even sell on Amazon)
  • A supplier of high-quality T-shirts.
  • A printer
  • A graphic designer

Many successful online t-shirt businesses started from scratch, may it be Bewakoof.com or The Souled store, you can also be one of them.

Learn more: How to Start A Profitable Online T-Shirt Business in 2022

Sell Your Art Online

You can always put a price tag on your art, may it be music, video, or even literally paintings. Making a living as an artist may be unreliable, but you can scale your profits if you know where to sell.

  • You can use Shuttershock, Zapmeta, Pexels to sell your photos.
  • You can Uscreen, Wix, Vimeo to sell your videos.
  • You can sell your art at ArtPal, Online Gallery Art and ArtPlease

If you want to sell your art online, you have to be serious about it. You need to have expertise in the field and pay attention to detail.

Start a Clothing Line

A business model that may seem appealing to young entrepreneurs is the clothing business. Anyone interested in fashion can try this out. But it isn't as easy as it looks. How to start a clothing line?

  • Put your dress designs/¬† business idea into paper.
  • Set up an online store on Shopify or any e-commerce platform
  • Source your products/raw materials

If you are thinking, "But I am not a fashion design student, how am I going to bring my designs to life?" then do not worry. Thanks to print-on-demand companies and apps, designing has become more convenient.

Anyone passionate about fashion who likes to dress people up and wants to start a clothing line can try out this online business idea.

Graphic designer

graphic designer

Like fashion, another sector that has immense growth potential is graphic designing. 

Are you someone who has an eye for aesthetics? Do you like beautifying your surroundings? Do you have basic editing skills? Then you can start by taking graphic design courses.

Graphic designers are always in high demand. If you learn this skill, you can tap into the vast market. You can work as a freelance graphic designer by taking on multiple clients on various platforms like Fiverr and Upwork. 

Once you have built a robust portfolio, you can start selling your designs/ themes.

How to start an online business

Thinking about starting an online business and starting it are two different things. But if you have the urge to start an online business, these are the steps you can take to get started.

  1. Jot down your business ideas. 
  2. Do the market research. 
  3. Survey friends and ask for advice.
  4. Choose a business model that appeals to you, whether freelancing or running an e-commerce store.
  5. Do the market research and identify the target audience, study their needs.
  6. Set up a budget.
  7. Start making products/ or find suppliers and raw materials.
  8. Build a selling platform; you can use e-commerce website builders for online stores. But if you are freelancing or selling art, you need to find other specific sales platforms for your needs.
  9. Set up a safe payment method
  10. Design a marketing strategy

Setting up an online business may take some time, and it won't take off immediately. So, you need to be patient with your business. Keep putting in the efforts, be persistent, and you will see the results.

Online Business Ideas FAQs

How do you brainstorm online business ideas?

Brainstorming business ideas can be exciting. Try to think about as many ideas as possible. Make sure all of the ideas come from you (original). 

Jot down all the ideas that come to your mind, big or small; you can sort them out later. You can also sit down with a group of friends and discuss new business ideas.

What is the best online business to start?

The best online business to start is dropshipping. Why? Because it has a high-profit margin, less investment, and a higher success rate. 

You can also become a freelance graphic designer, web developer, or even start a blog other than dropshipping. However, in 2022 dropshipping is the most relevant online business to start.

What is the best online business to start from home?

The best online business to start from home will again be dropshipping. Why? You do not need to deal with inventory management, shipping, or customer care. 

All you have to do from home is receive the order and inform the supplier. Dropshipping is for you if you want minimal involvement and maximum profit.

What are some online service business ideas?

The best part of an online business idea is to help you sell products and services. You can sell a physical object as well as a service. 

Some online business ideas include consulting, teaching, management, and social media consulting services.

How do I start a small online business?

To start a small online business, find something you are good at. Start selling it. If you are great at fitness, make a health app. 

If you are good at designing clothes, start a clothing line. If you are fantastic at making handicrafts, sell them.

  1. Find something you are interested in/ choose something you are good at.
  2. Start making the products.
  3. Choose a sales platform like Etsy, Instagram, or Facebook groups and start selling!

Do I need an LLC to sell online?

You do not need an LLC to sell online. But once you have received some success, you need to form an LLC for your online business. 

It isn't a requirement, but you can form it at any point in your business journey. However, the earlier you form an LLC, the better.

Conclusion: Online business Ideas

There are plenty of opportunities and ideas to start an online business. From being an affiliate marketer to selling your art online, creating an online business, and choosing the right idea for you can be ridiculously profitable. 

Once you’ve created your business, you’re going to need to promote it on every channel your audience is in. One of the most effective ways to do that is to create scroll-stopping videos of your business and post them on social media.

However, if you don’t have much time to spare, you can use OFFEO to speed everything up. With Offeo and our social media video maker, creating videos for social media only takes three minutes!

Not just social media, we can also help you create videos for educational purposes, promos, and even advertisements.

Well? What are you waiting for? Sign up for Offeo today and experience effortless video creation tomorrow!

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