Even though it takes money to make money, you don’t need millions to start a business. In fact, depending on which type of business you’re thinking of starting, you might not need a single dime. With so much focus now on leaving the traditional 9-to-5 rat race, startups are springing up everywhere, in every niche imaginable. And while some do require a hefty investment, others don’t. Here are five of the best businesses to start with little to no money.
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There’s never been a better time to start an e-commerce business. In fact, you can open an online shop and sell handmade products for under $20. Etsy, for example, allows crafters and budding entrepreneurs to sell their products on their platform. You can sign up for free and pay less than twenty-five cents to list each item. The has over a couple hundred million users worldwide, so once you do your keyword research and find your target audience, you can make a full-time salary on Etsy.
The drop shipping model has changed a lot over the last year. Although the premise remains the same, the way you source products has shifted. Previously, the only options drop shippers had been to source their products from China, specifically from Alibaba. And while the idea behind it was viable, so much so that Alibaba became a billion-dollar platform, the products aren’t always the best quality. Shipping and delivery times also create problems when it comes to customer satisfaction.
Now, you can source products from local manufacturers in the USA and build an online empire. All you need to do is choose a niche that’s trending, perform market research to validate your idea and start selling. If you choose this model, you will need to pay for a hosting platform. You can get started for free on Shopify and then choose a plan after 14 days. You can sell on Amazon; however, you do need to create a seller account and there is no free trial. If you go this route, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with Amazon and the fee schedule.
A lot of people are also using their skillsets to create consulting businesses. If you have a specialization, like web design or marketing, you can open a consulting firm and use social media to drive traffic to your website. Once you get your business off the ground and see real growth, you’ll need money for expansion. You can go about raising capital several ways, which includes applying for a small business loan, crowdfunding or tapping into your home equity. With a home equity loan, you can use seed money for your business as you deem necessary. Depending on the type of business, this might be the better route than getting investors involved or even a traditional bank loan. If you’re not familiar with how home equity loans work, there are plenty of online guides that explain the process.
Re-Sell on eBay
If you’ve accumulated a lot of things over the years, you can resell these products on eBay. People are always looking for household items, automotive parts and computer components online. You can start with the items you have in your home and if it takes off, you can then invest money into buying overstock and reselling online.