A new year is on the way, and at a time when most people are reevaluating their goals in life, what better time to start your dream business?
Sometimes all it takes is a little inspiration and a few good business ideas, and you’ll be on your way to launching a startup and doing meaningful work that you love.
We’ve broken down these popular work-at-home business ideas into specific niches that are sure to meet people’s needs in the coming new year. Best of all, you can start these small business ideas without having to get an investor or take out a loan.
With the new year approaching, people are looking for ways to improve their lives on all levels. Coaching is an opportunity to help people in many different areas of expertise. You might help them create a plan to get in better shape physically, mentally, spiritually, or overall get their life going on the right path.
If you’re all about exercise and good health, you might want to consider helping others reach their health and weight loss goals by becoming a health and fitness coach. Catering to clients who might not be comfortable going to a gym is an excellent way to get started. You can even teach your own classes at a venue such as a community center or an outdoor area such as a park or online via Zoom.
Some people struggle with meal planning around particular diets. If you know a lot about food and how to eat healthily, this might be a good option for you. You can work in groups or one-on-one with clients and help them with tasks such as setting nutritional goals and developing a healthy menu.
Work-Life Balance Coach
A work-life balance coach helps clients achieve overall balance in their lives. You help with things like goal setting, decision making, self care, and identifying the steps needed to transform goals into actions. Many people are looking for guidance, and it’s so valuable to have someone to bounce ideas off of. You could be that someone and earn a living by helping others.
If you’ve achieved success in business, you can teach others what you know. Sharing your knowledge and skills about business topics is a super relevant business idea right now and will only continue to grow. With so many people setting out to work for themselves and run their own businesses, business coaches are a very valuable resource. Plus, there are so many ways you can help as a business coach. You can work one-on-one with clients, host webinars with a group of people, and create courses and ebooks. The sky is the limit here!
Maybe you’ve thought about starting a blog but weren’t sure how to go about it. Blogging is a great business idea that has brought many people success while allowing them to run a business from the comfort of their homes. Blogging is hard work, but it’s also exciting! There’s always something new to learn, and if you want your blog to be a business, you should start learning from the beginning.
Believe it or not, many bloggers make a living (some make a mighty fine living!) from their blogs.
Here are a few categories that you should consider when choosing what to blog about:
Lifestyle bloggers come in many different forms. The common denominator here is that they usually talk about more than one topic. If you want to write about family, health, DIY, products, and more, then you’d likely call yourself a lifestyle blogger.
Fashion or Beauty Blog
If you have a flair for style or consider yourself a cosmetic guru, there’s never been a better time to write about fashion or beauty. It was already one of the top niches to blog about, but due to the rise of Instagram and YouTube, independent fashion and beauty influencers have gained national attention from the industry. Whether you focus on Fashion Week, everyday looks, or your skincare routine, there are tons to write about. If you love all things style and glamour, consider making a career out of fashion or beauty blogging!
Paid travel writing opportunities are plentiful, and travel blogging is a great way to earn an income and see the world! If you’ve been bit by the travel bug and are ready to take it full-time, consider starting a travel blog—the more specific your travel niche, the better. For instance, you could write about travel in a particular country, street food worldwide, or adventure tours. The sky is the limit! Ready to launch? Here’s the Ultimate Guide for Starting a Travel Blog.
A niche blog is when you’re hyper-focused on a single topic. It could be anything to do with coffee, such as places to get it, how to make it, and related products (such as coffee cups). You can also niche down even further and write only about organic coffee, or further still and write about organic coffee available in a particular part of the world. The ideas are endless; there are so many possible topics to write about!
Maybe you already have a business, but you want to work harder to get the word out about your products or services. Creating a business blog can help with that, and it might even wind up becoming another side business that generates income for you. Creating posts about your business and products and working social media can help your business get noticed online in places it wouldn’t have without a blog.
Creating a blog about blogging is very popular! Bloggers who have skills that they can teach other bloggers are killing it these days. You can create courses and ebooks and have membership sites and private Facebook groups to help bloggers learn the skills they need. Everything from writing blog posts and creating graphics to social media marketing, SEO, and monetizing your blog are topics that other bloggers need to learn. If you can show them how to replicate your success, you’ve found a fantastic way to earn a living!
Find out more about how to start a blog here.
3. Direct Sales
Direct sales sometimes get a bad rap because people sign-on without knowing much about the business or products. That, and they’re not taught how to market themselves properly. Spamming every person you’ve ever met with your business opportunity or products is not a good business practice. You have to be genuine with people and show them that you care and are not just out to make a buck from them.
That being said, direct sales businesses have helped many people have the work-at-home business of their dreams!
A few good ideas for direct sales home businesses you could join in the new year are:
Health, Wellness, and Fitness
Beauty and Makeup
You can find even more direct sales ideas here.
Make sure to do your homework before joining a direct sales business, as they all have different startup costs and requirements.
If you love creating digital designs, creating and selling printables may be your dream business idea!
What’s a printable? A printable is any digital design that you sell for customers to download and print at home. These can be anything from planners, coloring pages, fitness trackers, or a travel bucket list. If you know your way around a graphic design program, you can create printables once and sell them over and over again. Here’s how to start this perfect, passive-income side hustle!
If you love treating your pet to gourmet snacks from time to time, you may have noticed the serious lack of pup-friendly treats commercially available. This is where you come in! People love their dogs, so high-quality homemade treats can be a lucrative business if you love to bake. You can sell your treats to neighbors and friends at local markets, or if you really market yourself, you could even land on shelves! Here’s How to Start and Grow a Thriving Dog Treat Business.
As the number of online businesses and digital entrepreneurs has grown, so too has the number of people looking for help. As a virtual assistant, you can get paid to help business owners with a variety of tasks. Some popular virtual assistant services include proofreading and editing, managing social media accounts, website management, podcast or film production, internet research, calendar management, home management, and more. Consider what types of clients you’d like to work with and tailor your service offerings to that niche for the most success. On popular service is Pinterest management. Ready to get started? This course will teach you how to become a Pinterest VA Today!
If you enjoy crunching numbers and are a whiz in Excel, bookkeeping may be the dream business for you! Like virtual assistants, bookkeepers are in high demand with small business owners, bloggers, and digital entrepreneurs. Keeping up with expenses and receipts is a time-consuming task businesses of all sizes often look to outsource. While previous experience in bookkeeping is undoubtedly beneficial, you don’t necessarily need it to launch this career. There are lots of online courses that will help you get up and running.
You’d be surprised how many industries require professional proofreading services. Sure, blogs and media outlets are some of the top proofreading employers, but legal, medical, education, tech, oil and gas, and manufacturing proofreaders are all in high demand! If you have expertise in a particular industry but are ready to ditch the office, consider offering virtual proofreading services. To start working as a professional proofreader, typically, you need a degree in English or Journalism, but you may be able to substitute industry-specific experience in lieu of a writing degree. If you’re interested in proofreading but not sure where to start, check out this free course that will teach you how to get paid to proofread anywhere.
9. Voice Actor
Voice actors work on all types of projects, from TV and radio to audiobooks. Audiobooks are a massively popular way to earn money voice-over acting from home. Audiobook narrators do much more than read aloud; they also need to bring the story and characters to life. For that reason, a background in acting or theatre is helpful, but formal experience typically isn’t required to start working as a voice actor. Sound intriguing? Learn more about the voice acting industry, the necessary equipment, and how to get started in this free Intro to Voice Over mini-course.
10. Craft Seller
If you love making DIY gifts or have an artistic flair, you’ve undoubtedly wondered how to make it a full-time career. Whatever you create, you can find a market for it just about anywhere! Farmer’s markets and craft fairs are popular places to sell your wares, but Etsy is the most popular platform by far. Etsy, the original online marketplace for handmade goods, has helped millions of crafters, artists, and makers turn their hobby into a full-fledged business. If you dream of getting paid to do what you love, consider launching your own business online this year.
Whether you dream of being your own boss, doing work you have a passion for, or having the flexibility to create your own hours, there is no better day than today to start the business of your dreams! Half the challenge is just getting started. So if you’ve been waiting for a sign or keep telling yourself ‘maybe next year,’ consider this your sign! Make this year the year you start the business of your dreams.
Ready to become a successful entrepreneur? Grab our free business plan template here, and start the business of your dreams!
Orginally published December 26, 2016. Content updated November 2021.