6 Most Successful Small Business Ideas You Can Start with No Money

Buying inventory, stocking, packing and delivering requires a hardcore commitment for running an online business. But there are tons of other small business ideas which you can utilize which doesn’t involve inventory management. In fact, such ideas don’t ask you for large capital just a computer.

Small businesses are getting more traction on social media. Fact of the matter is, social media userbase has increased over the period of time. We were looking into the stats of 2018 ecommerce sales and see what we found.

social media users

Back in 2018, we discussed low investment business ideas, that covered just the dropshipping and print-on-demand business models.

Low Investment Business Ideas You Can Start Today

Online business ideas we are about to share in this blog post involve less of logistics intricacies and more of business focus. Get hands-on entrepreneurship without spending money initially.

1- Dropshipping business

Dropshipping business model involves a third party seller who stores and delivers the product on your behalf. This means you are only responsible for making sales and there is literally no handling of products.

Most say dropshipping is a modern take on old or conventional business models. However, the business idea of running a dropshipping store is not new and it was there in one form or another.

Buy a product on half or low price and sell it on double. Supplier in such cases doesn’t worry for the orders consistency as you are handling it yourself. It’s a mutual benefit.

Curating products from different suppliers with a focus on single niche is a good practice. This may help in building a business USP.

Having said that, dropshipping is also a low investment way of product testing before divulging into launching an original product.

Get a complete understanding of what is dropshipping and what's important before starting a dropshipping business.

Top 3 Things to Do Before Starting a Dropshipping Business

2- Print-on-demand products

Inventory, shipping and fulfillment is also in the hand of a third party. There is no hassle of managing inventory. In fact, it is an extended dropshipping model.

Unlike the above shared business idea, here the products are customized. Your design is printed on the products. T-shirts, phone cases, hoodies, handbags etc. with custom designs printed are some options.

If you are not a designer, you can hire one from freelancing websites such as Fiver, Upwork etc.

Use t-shirts mockup templates as in such case you don’t have to spend money on the product/design photoshoot.

There are many print-on-demand platforms available for Shopify store integration or with any other ecommerce store integration. Use them to save time and cost.

3- Online videos

Have you watched a video on YouTube lately? Obviously you did. YouTube has 1 billion users and they watch videos of all types and not just the funny ones. You can easily segregate serious channels working on how-to-do videos with maximum views.

First create a YouTube channel. Upload videos of your interest there. Activate monetization in the settings of YouTube. So that way you can enable Google short AdSense ads with the videos. For every viewed ad, you will get paid.

YouTube offers another business opportunity. That is ‘paid sponsorships’. If the YouTube channel harness enough followers and subscriptions, businesses are happy to ask for their product promotions.

Improve reach of your YouTube videos by posting them on Facebook, Twitter, blog etc. Let your circle know that you are into video business.

4- Affiliate Marketing

One of the promotional business models in ecommerce where merchants get connected with online marketers. No need for keeping the inventory or shipping products to customers.

Affiliate marketing under small business ideas is performance based where affiliates get paid when a customer performs an action. And in ecommerce industry context, this action is making an online purchase.

More than 80 percent of the affiliate programs are based on ‘pay-per-sale’.

Amazon is the first one which introduced affiliate marketing back in 1996. Qualified sale is a term which is important for understanding here.

There are certain parameters on which it is evaluated by the merchants.

1- Customer clicking on the affiliate link.

2- Purchased product into the shopping cart in a single session following the click of the customer.

3- Customer paying and receiving the product.

4- Customer keeping the product and not returning it.

Choose the Right Marketing Channel for an Ecommerce Business

Affiliate Ads

They are part of affiliate marketing and under this, an affiliate can choose variable number of channels for promotion of the products.

  • PPC ads (pay-per-click)
  • Digital banner ads
  • YouTube video ads
  • Advertorial content
  • Social media branding

Promotion of merchant’s products on all the above channels on behalf of a merchant.

5- Digital products / courses

You don’t have the physical product selling option only, there are innumerable digital products with a demand in the market. Digital products may include e-books, guides, webinars, podcasts etc. They are the easiest and you can make quick money. This is especially true if you acquire a skillset on the field you are planning to product content for.

Marketing templates or business templates are the ones used the most. Then online music, recorded interviews, how-to videos etc. are some rich digital products.

Original instrumental beats, stock photos or anything of value can be distributed with a creator’s license. A great small business idea.

6- Services business

Developers, designers, writers, photographers, fitness trainers, doctors and more are selling their services. And if the services are online, think of how much business they can generate by just tapping on to the online medium.

Appointment booking apps are now installed in our mobile phones. We don’t want to go and visit physical, rather booking an appointment online is a best-opted option a user goes for.

If you are selling services on an ecommerce platform like Shopify. You can get many book-an-appointment apps where customers can schedule their session with a consultant, doctor, fitness trainer, salon etc. You can use Freelancer or Upwork in order to reach out people for your skillset.

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Choose the Right Marketing Channel for an Ecommerce Business

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