Have you noticed that a lot of stores are closed recently? That’s a rhetorical question, don’t worry.
We’re here to tell you that just because we’ve seen so many businesses close their physical stores doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ve stopped operating altogether. Business owners all over the country have come up with creative ways to keep selling their products or services – from home!
As a matter of fact, in the 5 years preceding the coronavirus outbreak, the number of people working remotely grew by 44%. People were already switching to work from home – the pandemic has just added another good incentive to do so.
Whether you’re looking for a new from-home business idea or ideas for how to operate your current business from home, you’ve come to the right place.
Keep reading for the 10 best home-based business ideas you can start immediately.
10 remote business ideas you can start now
2. Online Coaching
3. Affiliate Marketing
5. Pet Portal
6. Box Subscription Services
7. Virtual Assistant
8. Music Teacher
9. Makeup Artist
10. Content Creator
Before you start reading this list, keep in mind that most of these remote business ideas will rely quite heavily on having an ‘official’ online presence. If you aren’t sure how to go about taking your business online, take the time to learn more about it so that you can get started with your home-based business as soon as possible.
There are plenty of good reasons to become a tutor. First off, you can choose your own schedule. No need to clock in, no bosses to answer to – it’s all on you. Secondly, there’s no shortage of clients. Kids need to learn, many schools across the country are shut down for coronavirus, so it probably won’t be very difficult to find customers. Third, you actually don’t need to limit your services to children. Adults are also looking to learn new skills during this crisis as a way to broaden their employment opportunities. You can help them!
How much does it cost to start an online tutoring business?
You can start an online tutoring business basically for free. With plenty of free video chat services available (through Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Zoom, etc.), all you need is a computer, your existing skills, and a lesson plan to teach those skills to your pupils.
How to get started as an online tutor
To get started as an online tutor, choose a skill or hobby you’re already proficient at and create a lesson plan around it. Start with the basics for beginners and gradually move up in skill and complexity. As far as communication, Zoom is our favorite free video chat service here at Become. Zoom allows you to chat with multiple people at once (to hold classes), screen-share with other chat participants, use a virtual pen to make marks on your screen, share documents, and much much more.
2. Online Coaching
The coronavirus pandemic has forced many industries to shut down, including gyms and fitness centers. Which makes sense, since they’re typically enclosed areas with many people breathing and sweating … you get the point. But people still want to stay in shape, and many need someone to push them along. That’s where you can step in with an online coaching business! And even if/when gyms reopen, nobody knows if the winter will bring a second wave of COVID-19. Start your online coaching business today and start building up your client list!
How much does it cost to start an online coaching business?
If you want to get really serious about this, you can spend a few hundred dollars and buy yourself a top-notch digital camera and tripod, along with editing software – plus an assortment of weights, resistance bands, and so on. And if you already have a computer with a camera and some workout equipment, you’re off to a good start.
But you don’t even need to have the highest-quality equipment to start an online coaching business! A smartphone camera could work just fine. And as far as equipment goes, you can get a little creative and use items from around your home to substitute for plates and dumbbells. That could actually be more attractive for customers, as it would mean they also don’t need to go out and buy workout equipment to join your courses.
How to get started as an online coach
First and foremost, create a set of workout regimens, ideally for different skill levels (beginner, intermediate, hard, high-intensity) and different types of workouts (cardio, strength, endurance, etc.). Then choose a video chat service to host your sessions (Zoom, Skype, Facebook Messenger Rooms, etc.). For this business, Facebook Messenger Rooms could be a good option as you can set up a business page right on Facebook and keep everything closely connected. Set your prices, set your schedule, and start marketing your new business!
Top tip: It’s crucial to have a website for your new home-based business so that your clients will have a place to find all of your information and resources. For an online coaching business, for instance, a website would allow you to upload recorded workout videos that you place behind a paywall. The possibilities are endless.
3. Affiliate Marketing
You don’t have to be a 10 out of 10 on the creativity scale to start a home-based business. If you’re more of a people person, this is among the best from-home business ideas out there.
Affiliate marketing is one of the top remote business ideas because it allows you to quickly get started selling an already-existing product or service by making good use of your natural skills with customer communication. You’ll essentially be promoting a business that you like to other people and earning profit for sales that you make.
How much does it cost to start an affiliate marketing business?
You can get started with an affiliate marketing business for free. What you really need to invest is time and effort into building up reputability among a large audience base. Nowadays there’s a good chance that the audience will be on social media, which is a good reason for you to look at social media marketing.
Of course, if you want to build this home-based business into something bigger, you may want to invest in developing high-quality content. While improving your SEO practices will help, consider hiring a professional to help you make fun and interesting videos to promote your affiliate businesses.
How to get started as an affiliate marketer
Choose a ‘niche’ that you consider yourself an expert or enthusiast in. Find products, services, or businesses in your niche that you like and feel confident about promoting. Create a YouTube channel and start posting your reviews. Reach out to those businesses to set up an affiliate account. Start earning money!
Are you already a business owner? Is there already a retail component to your business? Then you’re in luck because you’ve got the foundation laid for this home-based business idea!
Essentially any product you were selling in your brick-and-mortar business can be sold through an online store. Providing services through eCommerce will, of course, be more limited.
How much does it cost to start an eCommerce business?
How much it costs to start an eCommerce business depends on several factors. First, are you creating your own products or will you purchase products from a supplier? Do you already have a supplier or do you need to find one?
Second, do you have an online store already or do you need to find an eCommerce website builder? If you’re just starting your online store, are you going to sign up for a basic plan or a more advanced plan? Prices can range from $12 to $300.
Top tip: There are tons of tools and services out there for website building, but you don’t have to sift through them all yourself. Try Become Online for free today and get custom-matched with the services that your business needs to start selling online quickly and easily.
How to get started with eCommerce
If you don’t have a retail business already set up, you’ll first need to decide on what it is you’ll be selling. Ideally, you’ll want to choose products that you have knowledge of and that you can advise clients on. If you’re a fashionista, you can sell clothing and apparel that your customers know will have ‘your taste’. If you’re a fish tank fanatic, you can sell high-end tank accessories and/or prepared starter-sets for beginners.
Top tip: Be sure to balance following your passion with meeting a real market demand. In other words, just because you enjoy doing something doesn’t necessarily mean people will spend their money on joining your hobby. If your goal is to make money, there needs to be a demand for the products or services you aim at providing.
5. Pet Portal
According to a TD Ameritrade survey, more than 70% of Millennials own a pet, and most Millennial dog owners expect to spend more on their dog (toys, food, insurance, veterinarian, etc.) than they will on their own medical costs over their lifetime.
In short, out of all home-based business ideas, there’s very little concern over a lack of demand for a pet portal business. People love their pets and are willing to shell out cash for them.
How much does it cost to start a pet portal business?
Similarly to other eCommerce businesses, the cost of starting a pet portal business is largely dependent on whether or not you already have an online store and suppliers. If you’re missing either of those things, you could be looking at a few hundred dollars to get started. A worthy investment when you consider the level of demand for pet supplies, particularly when so many brick-and-mortar pet stores are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
How to get a pet portal started
Set up supply lines for a wide variety of pet-related products. Those can range from toys to clothing, treats, food, supplements, natural remedies, tanks, heating lamps, and much much more (though we can’t guarantee that there are masks made specifically for pets, despite the picture below). Develop an online store so customers can make purchases. Establish a system for making deliveries, and you’re pretty much set!
Top tip: Since there are so many possible pets and products that they may need, you should look into dropshipping if a pet portal interests you. Dropshipping lets you run an eCommerce business without having to store tons of inventory. Instead, you as the dropshipper handle all aspects of the business besides the storage and delivery of the products.
6. Box Subscription Services
Of all the from-home business ideas listed here, box subscription services take a bit more creativity on your part. The idea is that you gather goods that you like and recommend and package them together. Clients can then purchase the boxes and get those goods at a discounted rate compared to what they would spend on buying each item individually.
How much does it cost to start a box subscription business?
The cost of starting a box subscription business relies on what you’re selling and whether or not you have an online store set up. If you’re making boxes of snacks from around the world like Universal Yums (we’re subscribers!), it’ll likely cost you less than if you’re making boxes of boutique skincare products.
How to get started with box subscription services
Pick an idea that will not only meet an existing customer demand but will also be fairly easy to store. Price your subscription boxes (perhaps offer different ‘levels’ of boxes to draw in those customers looking for a VIP box). Develop your online store. Market your service. Take orders, ship them out, and make that money!
Top tip: You’ll want to stay away from perishables, at least until you’ve built up your customer base to the point where demand is steady.
7. Virtual Assistant
Plenty of professionals feel that they could use a hand with getting through the more basic daily tasks so that they can focus on growing their own business. It’s for that reason that becoming a virtual assistant has made it on this list of remote business ideas.
You can set your own prices, work for several clients at once, and even arrange your own schedule – offering a high level of flexibility for those looking for home-based business ideas that they can mesh with their personal lives.
How much does it cost to start a virtual assistant business?
As long as you have administrative support skills, there’s no need to pay for education to become a virtual assistant. Plus, it won’t require much of an investment as far as equipment and software go. You’ll need a computer and a phone, and you’ll probably want to invest in a CRM (customer relationship management) software to keep your work organized. At Become, we like to use Monday.com to keep all of our teams synced up with one another. Beyond that, meeting success as a virtual assistant will be more a matter of an investment of time than of money.
How to get started as a virtual assistant
Specify your services. Will you be doing everything for one client? Or will you be providing one service (such as transcription) for several clients? Find clients, set your prices, and get to work.
8. Music Teacher
Do you play a musical instrument? Are you looking to change up your tune a bit? Consider starting a home-based business as a music teacher. You can make this your full-time profession or even fit it into your schedule as a part-time gig. Lessons can be adapted for children or adults of all different skill levels.
Top tip: You can partner up with other music teachers who may give lessons for instruments that you cannot teach by offering discounts for clients that are referenced to you.
How much does it cost to start a musical education business?
If you already play an instrument, chances are you won’t have to spend much (if anything) on equipment. From there you’ll simply need to have a computer with a camera and access to a video chat service – many of which are completely free of charge. Since this home-based business revolves around music, you may want to consider buying a high-quality microphone for your virtual lessons.
How to get started as a music teacher
First off, make sure that your customers have a way to pay you virtually. That means setting up an online store. Then, market your skills! Perhaps you can provide an arrangement of free beginner videos and put the rest behind a paywall on your website. Or post full lessons on how to play popular songs on your social media to attract customers. Once you have enough students lined up, you can arrange a schedule for individual or group lessons (individual will cost students more per hour, but group lessons will come with less one-on-one help).
9. Makeup Artist
The coronavirus crisis has hit business owners where it hurts, but this home-based business idea can help you make up for the lost time. Yes, pun intended.
All jokes aside, becoming a makeup artist is one of the most profitable remote business ideas around. You can target one or many audiences – those with big and small budgets, those looking for quick tips and those looking for more advanced tutorials, and so on.
How much does it cost to start a makeup artist business?
While other from-home business ideas don’t require a high-quality camera, this one does. The main focus of your customers (and followers in general) will be the visual aspect, so you may want to invest in a good camera (which can start under $200) as well as a ring light (the most basic can be found for $12) to provide the best quality video possible.
How to get started as a makeup artist
Build your brand by marketing yourself towards a specific audience. Are you looking to attract busy moms who are working on a budget or clients who won’t settle for anything less than the highest-quality products? Are you going to offer your services for novices who want to do their own makeup or will you offer your lessons to other aspiring makeup artists? Regardless of your answers, you’ll need to market yourself effectively to draw in clientele – use social media!
Once you’ve settled on your audience and started marketing your business, you’ll need to stock up on your products. Again, your inventory will depend on the audience you’re targeting and their budgets. Be sure to keep that in mind.
You’re now ready to open your online store. You can offer pre-recorded tutorials and/or live lessons for groups or individuals. Consider providing services specifically tailored to special events like weddings, graduation ceremonies, and so on.
10. Content Creator
Do you enjoy learning new things and relaying that info to others in a way that’s both entertaining and educational? Consider content creation for your home-based business. Every business that has an online presence is in need of a content creator, so your opportunities to find clients are virtually limitless. What you really need is to be a good writer and be able to keep that ‘spark’ in your writing as you shift focuses between different topics.
How much does it cost to start a content creator business?
As is the case with so many other home-based business ideas, you can get started without spending a dime. But you will need to spend time sharpening up on your SEO skills. Being a good writer is just the starting point – you’ll need to know how to get your clients’ websites to rank higher on web search results, and that’s where SEO is key.
Other than writing skills, you’ll need a computer and an internet connection. You may want to invest in a CRM software to keep your work organized, but it’s not entirely necessary when you’re just getting started.
How to get started as a content creator
Become an expert in your field. You can go to study at a university if you want, but that’s not what we mean. We simply mean that you need to be in-the-know about news, updates, and other important information in your industry. Then write about it in your own voice – consistently. Don’t just summarize the info, but offer your own unique and useful perspective that will spark the interest of readers and keep them coming back for more.
From there, you can grow your network, build relationships, and use your newfound reputation to find more business opportunities. You can work for multiple companies or focus your attention on one. Just don’t stop writing!
You’re home free!
Coronavirus lockdowns have forced many businesses to close down and resulted in millions of American workers claiming unemployment. Until restrictions are lifted, people need to start finding alternative ways of bringing in money. We hope that these top 10 remote business ideas will help inspire any of you that are looking to start working from home.