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Not only a new year but a new decade is just around the corner, and it’s perhaps the best moment to start a new cycle by starting a successful business. One of the following online business ideas could become your greatest adventure for 2020, and pretty soon, you’ll be coaching others on starting a business with no money or minimal investment. 

For any business, you’ll need to create a logo design, a color palette, and branded content to put together a brand with a visual identity. 

logos for online business

1. Blogger

Becoming a blogger can become a full-time job when done right, even if you have no experience in writing professionally online. 

What’s the first thing to do? Sketch a plan and learn how to set and maintain a blog. No successful blogger has really made it by improvising and faking their success on their way to the top; behind the scenes, there’s effort and deep thought along with a detailed calendar for posting.

Don’t know what to write about? Try something that will actually have an audience, pick a target, and plan your content accordingly. Focus on an idea and work on it; take a look at these steps before starting:

– Set a purpose for your blog. 

– Determine if the platform allows you to make money from blogging. 

– Settle on a topic that involves your passion, what you’re good at, and that’s profitable. 

– Choose a domain name that reflects the content you’ll be posting. Think of this as your brand, so it should be an interesting, clear, and memorable name. 

– Start setting up your blog!

There are free options to use, such as WordPress or Blogger. If you want to register a domain, though, it’ll cost you about $20 USD. Additionally, there are plans for domains and hosting, so do a little research before selecting one and choose what matches your needs.

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop.

●    Startup costs: About $70 USD for an annual hosting and domain plan. 

2. Freelance Designer

If the design is your passion, you’re a few steps from getting your dream job and becoming your own boss. When you love creating great designs, it’s pretty easy to start an online freelance business, since you can deliver files and get paid remotely.

Getting paid well for designing isn’t magic, though. You need to look for clients, and, most of all, you need to get regular customers that will guarantee a steady income.

What should you do first? Build your own website to show your work, display your portfolio, explain your rates, and get requests from remote clients. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop, design software license. 

●    Startup costs: $30-$50 USD per month for a license. 

3. Social Media Consultant

Nowadays, anyone who sells anything is looking to have an online presence. If you’ve been in the social media marketing business for a while and think you’ve got enough experience to advise about social media best practices, go for it. 

Even if you’re going solo, you should give your brand a look that potential customers can identify. Focus on getting a professional website and attractive branding, and target Instagram influencers

For this business idea, improvising doesn’t work well, so if you don’t have the knowledge yet, you may want to take an online course to know the basics of understanding social media and its metrics.

If you’re already an expert and have the ability to run campaigns on different platforms, launch your freelancing career. If it goes well, you can even hire other professionals and upgrade this service into a social media marketing agency. There are tonnes of ways to make money on social media these days. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop. 

● Startup costs: $20-$70 USD for an annual hosting and domain plan. 

4. Stock Photographer

If you’re that friend who people always turn to get great pictures but haven’t really thought about doing it for money, this could be your chance. 

The beauty of being a photographer is that you get to create art for a living. You can express your point of view about the world and get paid for it.

Currently, there are plenty of online marketplaces and photo stocks to sell your pictures, such as Envato Market, Adobe Stock, Shutterstock, and 500 px. They buy pictures from a wide range of categories: people in different life scenarios, food, cities, nature, pets, landscapes. 

If you choose to sell through one of these sites, read the terms and clauses to sell and get paid. 

●    What you need: Professional camera, internet access, laptop, editing software license. 

●    Startup costs: $3,000-$10,000 USD for a professional camera + $30-$50 USD per month for a license. 

5. Virtual Assistant

This is ideal as a side-job for people who are well-organized can keep up with a schedule, and are willing to help another business with office tasks… without getting out of their pajamas. 

Becoming a virtual assistant has all the potential to be the best home job to make good money while investing zero dollars. Depending on your experience, you can set your rates for different services and hours per week, starting out at $20 and earning up to $60 USD per hour. 

What would you do? Answer phone calls, organize your client’s email, and perhaps making arrangements for meetings, but don’t limit your tasks. Offer things you enjoy doing: proofreading, bookkeeping, customer support, or managing social media.

Decide on how you’ll charge for your services: hourly rate, project-based, retainer, or a contract for a number of hours. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop, headset. 

● Startup costs: $30-$50 USD for a headset to take phone calls. 

6. Online T-Shirt Seller

Creating t-shirt designs online is not only easy but fast. You can get tons of different designs done in one day, then you can sell them online and, believe me, they sell really well, and they sell quickly. 

Where to start? First, be aware there’s a lot of competition, so aiming for popularity and building a strong brand means almost everything. 

The following tips will be useful to get you started: 

–      Find a niche for your store. Who is actually buying your t-shirts? Be specific, the smaller your target it, the easier it would be to design for them. 

–      Set up an eCommerce shop. Choose a platform for your online store, and go over the information about payment, currencies, taxes, shipping, and the overall settings. 

–      Create your t-shirt designs. Look for a drag-and-drop editor to make this easier. You can choose from professional templates and adjust some features. 

–      Add them to your store. Explore the options for adding products, introducing new ones, and highlighting best-sellers. 

–      Print your designs. When the product starts selling online, you can either do this yourself or look for a print-on-demand partner. There are many suppliers that can print and ship for you.

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop.

Startup costs: $20-$70 USD for an annual hosting and domain plan. Additional fees for selling online. 

tshirt design mockup

7. Online Course Teacher

This one is pretty easy. You need your knowledge, decent communication skills, and internet access. Becoming an online teacher is also a fulfilling activity since you become part of an often global learning community, and you could be earning up to $100,000 USD a month. Not bad, huh? 

Do you feel your skill is too specific? It may be valuable, as well. The internet is a wide, vast place where people are looking for almost anything. You can go online and register to be a teacher on Skillshare, Udemy, Coursera, or any other online learning community that adjusts to your needs and professional background.

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop, conference cam. 

● Startup costs: $0, perhaps $80-$300 USD for a conference cam. 

8. eBook Writer

Are you a decent writer, have some spare time on your hands, and work great with deadlines? Maybe it’s time to make money with your creative skills and become an eBook writer.

The choice to make here is where to set up a profile for your freelance services, and you’ll need a website as well to detail rates and exhibit your previous work, so potential customers know if your style and topic range fit their needs. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop. 

● Startup costs: $20-$70 USD for an annual hosting and domain plan for your website.

9. Translator

If you’re more into very small online business ideas, and you’re also fluent in two or more languages, this is a gig you can land without trouble. 

● Startup costs: $0-$60 USD for an annual license for word processing software. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop. 

10. Online Thrift Store Seller

Online stores, in general, are a good idea to start an online business, but an online thrift store can be more profitable since you need a little money to get used items. The trick to succeeding in this business is to pick good items and building a really strong brand image.

Be aware this is not the cheapest option on the list, but it has some advantages: you won’t need a business license, you won’t pay rent or need any staff to help you out, and it’s extremely profitable. You’ll also need a business plan to make this store a success. 

●    What you need: Internet access, laptop, camera. 

● Startup costs: $20-$25 USD a month for running an online store. Plus, the costs of taking professional photos of each product. 

These are only a few, but there are hundreds of new ideas to take into action for 2020 and turn them into a business. Can you come up with another idea to write down for your New Year’s resolutions? Please share so we can grow this list! 

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