50 Profitable Online Business Ideas Anyone Can Start

January 21, 2016 Home Business

50 profitable online business ideas

You want to start an online business but aren’t sure which one? Here’s our take on the top 50 online business ideas we could muster.

Starting a business can be a scary prospect, especially if you’re not sure which business you’d like to get into. There are new business ideas everywhere and hundreds of ways to make money with an online business, especially if you are willing to be creative and tenacious.

Before we dive into the full list of business ideas, its worth mentioning one of the easiest ways we’ve found to make some quick side-income online – joining Swagbucks.com.

Swagbucks is a site that pays users to answer surveys, search the internet, and even watch videos. For performing these tasks, the company will reward you with real cash (well, technically not real cash – but a very real Paypal payment you can convert to cash).

Sounds too good to be true? Well, there’s good news and bad news. The good news is that its really true: you can make money surfing the web, giving your opinion, and watching videos!

The bad news is that this opportunity exists because big companies need to gather market data about their products, test their advertising, try out new TV show ideas, and gather other information to help them sell people more *stuff*. So if you’re super anti-corporate and don’t want to help perpetuate our consumeristic culture – this isn’t the right opportunity for you.

For the rest of us, Swagbucks is probably the easiest way to start making money online. Seriously, all you have to do is:

  1. Sign up for Swagbucks here (totally free, all you need is a name and an email address to get started)
  2. Confirm your account by checking your email
  3. Choose a simple task to start with – tasks range from filling out surveys to watching videos.
  4. Earn Swagbucks that you can redeem for rewards, or redeem for a cash payment.

If you want to give it a try and see how much you can make side-hustling for Swagbucks (we’ve had readers who’ve reported earning up to $2,700 a month), you can sign up for free here.

If you’ve already signed up and are earning money with Swagbucks (or you hate corporations and don’t want to take their money), then here are 50 other online business ideas that are all great opportunities to start your own web based company.

1. Web Designer

Web designers are in great demand these days. The job consists of designing websites for clients, while making certain the site is set up creatively, is functional, and presents well visually.

To succeed in the business, knowledge of web design programs and the ability to artistically and technically put to together web sites is a necessity.

2. Virtual Assistant

There are countless websites where virtual assistants can find work, and that’s why it’s an excellent online business.

Virtual assistants help clients manage their businesses and lives by assisting with appointments, email, and any other work an assistant would accomplish. The work can be performed remotely, and with a few good clients, you could have a profitable business.

3. Consultant

If you specialize in anything, put your talents to good use and become an online consultant.

Whether it’s business, law, real estate, or public relations, you can launch a website offering your consulting services to clients for a fee.

4. Graphic Designer

Graphic designers are in charge of developing visual content for websites or companies.

To be successful, you must be proficient in graphic design programs such as adobe Illustrator and Photshop and have the artistic ability to create such things as visually pleasing logos, web pages, catalogs or brochures. many graphic designers have a bachelor’s degree in fine arts.

5. Web Researcher

If you are a strong researcher, opening an online web researching business could be your thing.

Many businesses need research conducted before they launch a product and often hire researchers. In addition, companies need researchers to locate people, and others need fact checkers to ensure accurate information on their websites.

6. SEO Optimizer

Search engine optimization involves making certain that a website is ranked high in a search engine result.

The way this is accomplished is through the right keywords, links to other websites, and organization. SEO optimizers analyze sites for clients and then attempt to improve areas of the site that need fine tuning so they site will be ranked higher in search engine results.

7. Tutoring

This business requires a college degree, but there is a huge demand for tutors in all subjects online.

There are countless companies who hire tutors for grades K-12 and college students as well.
You can also choose to start up your own online tutoring company and hire others to help with various subjects.

8. Sales

Whether it’s makeup, handbags, candles, or cookware, selling online has become easier than ever.

In the past, sales like these had to be done at parties in the homes of friends, but these days, your business can be done entirely online through social media parties or from your personal website.

9. Etsy Store

If you are creative and would like to sell your creations, Etsy is the perfect place to do it.

Whether it’s shirts, costumes, hats, or arts and crafts, you can open an Etsy store and sell your stuff!

10. Data Entry

Entering data is important part of any business, and there is a demand for employees to perform this service.

As a date entry clerk, it will be your responsibility to enter information accurately into a system. Possible jobs could include entering data for medical records, financial information, and catalogs.

Data Entry

11. Ebook Writer

With the popularity of e-readers, it’s never been a better time to write an Ebook.

If you enjoy writing, choose a genre and get started! You can publish your book youtself and market it. If you are just starting out, it’s better to price your book for less and then increase the price once you build a following.

12. Accountant

If you have a degree in accounting, start up your own online accounting business.

In addition to doing taxes for clients, you could also offer consulting services for a fee.

13. Customer Service

Becoming a customer service rep online is easier than ever. There are many companies who hire remote employees to take calls from customers.

Possible jobs could include hotel booking, handling client complaints, and taking orders for products. The amount of work out there makes this a great online business to be in.

14. Blogging

The popularity of blogging has really grown in recent years, and if you like writing and can find your niche, then this could be a fun business to start.

It takes time to earn money as a blogger, but through advertising, affiliate marketing, and subscription options, there is a possibility of good income.

15. Medical Transcription

Another online business idea is in medical transcription. There are many jobs in this field available entirely online.

Medical Transcriptionists typically transcribe audio notes and records from medical professionals. The job requires knowledge of medical terminology and formal training is often needed to become employed. Fast typing skills are also a must and some basic transcribing equipment such as a foot pedal and headphones.

16. Resume Writing

If you have superior writing skills, then starting an online resume writing business could be the career you’ve been looking for.

Everyone needs to showcase their skills on a resume, and job seekers often pay professional writers to organize their qualifications in an effective way.

17. Affiliate Marketing

This is a good business to get involved in if you already have a website for another business or for personal reasons.

Basically, you choose a company that you like that has an affiliate program, apply to become an affiliate and then you link your website to theirs. Whenever a visitor or your site clicks the link and buys from them, you will get a commission. It’s easy and you do nothing!

18. Web Content Writing

When a website starts up, it needs content, and that’s where web content writers come in.

Writing web content can be in the form of articles, information about a business or anything else that the client would like covered on their website. Many work at home websites advertise jobs for web content writers of you can post your own.

19. Photo Editing

If you’re skilled with photo editing programs and have an eye when it comes to photography, think about putting your skills to use editing photos.

Whether it’s cropping, enhancing, or changing a background, there is plenty of work to be found in this field online.

20. Language Tutor

If you would like to help others learn English or another language, you could start an online language tutoring business.

Launch a website or do some advertising online explaining your services. You can do your tutoring via Skype or through other videoconferencing programs.

If you are fluent in English, tutor students who would like to improve their English. If you are fluent in another language, use your skills to help others learn another language.

Language Tutor

21. Advertising

If you have a background in advertising, put it to use online and start an advertising business.

You can help clients with all facets of ad campaigns for their businesses and offer all of your services remotely. From developing strategies to slogans, the job can encompass all of a client’s advertising needs.

22. eBay Seller

eBay can offer a great business opportunity for those looking to sell items or products online.

There are so many different categories on eBay, so you may want to specialize and sell electronics, clothes, antiques, or anything you are interested in. When a product is sold, you are responsible for packing it up and shipping it off.

23. Online Thrift Store

Whether you have your own items to sell or someone else’s, there is a market for everything online.

Simply start up a website, take photos of your items, price them to sell, and then let the business roll in. The great part of this business is that there is no cost for merchandise since all of your items will be yours or donated by others.

24. Survey Taker

Completing surveys online won’t make you rich, but it can certainly earn you some extra income each month.

The important part of taking surveys is knowing which surveys are legitimate. A good way to find legitimate surveys is through sites such as Swagbucks and SurveyMonkey.

25. Used Book Selling

Have a lot of books? You could start a used book website or become a bookseller on Amazon.

If you price the books low, plenty of business will come your way. However, that means you will need to sell a lot of books to turn a decent profit. If the books you sell are rare or out of print, you can charge more for them.

26. Search Engine Evaluator

Becoming a search engine evaluator is a possible online career if you are good at analyzing search engine results.

The job consists of ranking the results that come up when you perform a search within a search engine. There are several companies that hire search engine evaluators, but they typically require a college degree and a stringent hiring and training process.

27. T Shirt Making

Making specialty tshirts is a fun online business idea!

Start up a website and then offer various colors and styles of tshirts that can be personalized. You can also offer tshirts featuring your unique logo or different catchy sayings on them.

28. Artist

For those with an ability to create aesthetically pleasing artwork, consider starting up a website selling your art.

Whether it’s painting of photography, there are consumers who are bound to appreciate it. Post pictures of your work on your website and create a social media page for your business as well.

29. Editing

If you have the ability to read through written works and pick out all of the style errors, then an online editing business is a possible choice for you.

Clients might need you to edit a manuscript, business proposals, resumes, and other written materials. To be successful, you will need to have impeccable writing and editing skills. A degree in English or a related field is helpful as well.

30. Real Estate

Although most real estate transactions happen after buyers visit a property, there are many buyers who live in a different area and are willing to buy sight unseen.

Market yourself as a buyer’s agent who works exclusively with out of area clients and you could have a real estate business that is entirely online. All transactions, including document signing and closings can also be performed entirely online. There are tons of ways to make money in real estate.

Personal Shopper

31. Personal Shopper

With so many busy people out there, a personal shopping website is great business to start. You’ll be helping others look their best and make some money doing it.

Allow your clients to tell you what they like and what they need when it comes to clothing, shoes, or bags, and then give them several options to choose from. Clients can decide which they would like to buy and pay you a fee for your services. Of all of our online business ideas go, this one could be one of the most fun.

32. Travel Agent

It seems that all travel is arranged online in this day and age. But often, travelers need assistance planning their itineraries.

With some training and a website, you can become an online travel agent and help clients plan their dream vacations by booking flights, hotels, and tours.

33. Social Media Manager

Social media is an important function of a successful business, so it’s often necessary for companies to hire people to manage their social media accounts. If you love Twitter and Facebook and can post on demand quickly and efficiently, this might be a great online business opportunity.

Social media managers will help companies decide what and when to post on their social media pages. You will also be responsible for posting about your clients’ special events, sales, new products, and making sure the pages are free from damaging content.

33. Gift Baskets

Putting together specialty gift baskets is a great business idea since everyone loves them and they are great as birthday or special occasion presents.

Once you have a website, advertise some specialty gift baskets that you can put together for customers or let them create their own. Arrange the gift basket and then ship it off.

35. Jewelry Making

Have a knack for making jewelry? Why not start up a website and sell it online.

Creatively made pieces of jewelry are a big hit and if you have the talent, your pieces could sell for a good price. Design your website to reflect the style of your jewelry and post many pictures of your pieces.

36. Nutrition Coach

Everyone wants to be healthy these days, so offering nutrition advice online is a valuable service!

If you are trained as a dietician or in another related area, you could help clients manage their weight, eat to battle chronic illnesses and health issues, or just assist them in improving their overall nutrition.

37. Email Manager

Email is now the preferred method of communication for millions. But for busy people, there is often a lack of time to answer all of their personal and professional emails

Depending on the client, email management can consist of opening and answering personal emails, responding to general business emails, setting appointments, processing orders, and handling complaints.

38. Ghost Writing

If you’re a great writer and don’t mind helping others with their goals, ghost writing is a great online business idea for you.

Advertise your services online and include your specialties and rates. You will not be credited with the writing, but you are doing an invaluable service for someone else who wants to get their story out there but lacks the tools to do it.

39. Copywriting

Copywriting involves writing with the intention of selling something. Thus, many businesses are in need of good copywriters.

Online copywriting is an excellent business for those who are creative and can write effectively and persuasively. Copywriters might write copy for catalogs, brochures, websites, or emails. A degree in English or a related subject is preferred, but copywriters can also gain on the job experience.

40. Event Planner

Are you a natural organizer and love to throw an amazing party? An online event planner is a great career that is easy to start.

Once you launch your event planner website and obtain some clients through word of mouth, your job will be to help others plan their special occasions. You can send clients options for decorations, cakes, locations, and any other party need through web links, and then order it all for them. Your clients won’t have to do a thing!

Party Planner

41. Interview Coach

Getting a good job is the dream of all career minded people; however, some prospective employees just don’t excel in the interview portion of the hiring process.

If you are good at interviewing or have worked in a field where you interviewed others, you can help prepare job seekers for the big interview. Using Skype, you can conduct mock interviews and give clients feedback.

42. Life Coach

If you’re good at giving advice, why not help others in need and get them through their rough patches?

You can give general help to clients or you can specialize and help with relationships, parenting, or career decisions. The ability to listen and then provide constructive feedback is key to being successful.

43. Technical Writer

Many businesses need technical content written in laymen’s terms, so there is a huge market for writers who specialize in this area.

To succeed in this field, it’s important that you have a grasp of the content you are writing about so that you can adequately explain it on such places as websites, instruction manuals, or brochures.

44. Educational Videos

If you know a lot about something, post your expertise online.

Whatever your specialty- fixing cars, house cleaning tips, sewing, or anything else, you can place your videos on websites such as YouTube.

45. Digital Phot Album Creator

Creatively arranging photos in a digital album is a great business to start online. Arranging photos to music is a nice touch or including captions about each photo can enhance the final product as well.

If you have a knack for this type of work, many customers will pay you for your services rather than do it themselves.

46. Apartment Locator

When moving to a new area or looking for a new place to rent, people can be overwhelmed. That’s where an apartment locator comes in.

Launch a website that offers prospective clients assistance in locating rentals. You can offer them information about which apartment complexes are close to certain amenities, take pets, have a gym, and many other important options.

47. Logo Designer

New companies are always in need of a great logo, so this is an excellent business idea for creative minds.

The job will consist of developing logos online for clients. You will need to work closely with them to discuss their vision for the logo and then fine tune that vision with your creative flare and software.

48. Remote Technical Assistance

Are you good with computers and other electronic devices? Utilize your skills and open up an online technical assistance business.

Allow clients to chat with you through your website so that you can discern what their technical issues are and how to remedy them. You can charge a fee for your services based on the time spent and if the problem was fixed.

49. Online Cooking School

Love to cook and teaching others how? Start a website where you instruct students on the finer points of cooking.

Your website can include videos and live cooking classes where students can work alongside you in their own kitchens and ask you questions as they go. Fees for the school could be per class or on a monthly unlimited basis.

50. Personal Stylist

Do you have a flair for fashion and style? Then help someone else look their best entirely online.

From the comfort of your home, you can shop for your client, discuss clothing or accessoriy options through email or Skype, show clients how to make the most of their body type, and advise them about dressing for various events.

The previous online business ideas are easy to start and can be incrediy profitable. If starting an online business is your dream, start making it happen, and make your dream a reality!