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15 Home Business Ideas with Low Startup Costs

Making an income from a home business is now more profitable than ever. As freelancing becomes more common, you can find plenty of remote-working opportunities online.

Some home businesses can be expensive to start. Therefore, it’s important to know what affordable opportunities are out there that combine low startup costs with high revenue.

We suggest these fifteen home business ideas with low startup costs to inspire you. We’ll also give you some tips on growing your business.

1. Social media consultant

Social media consultants help public figures, companies, and organizations improve their online presence. Tasks mainly revolve around content planning and creation, and responding to users.

While keeping up with the latest trends, you’ll decide the best content strategies to use for each platform, and the best time to post.

You may offer to manage your clients’ social media and perform audits for your clients’ accounts. The more extensive your service, the more money you can charge or your time.

If you’re well-versed in social media management, this job is perfect for you.

For starting a business in social media, all you need is:

  • A laptop
  • A smartphone
  • An internet connection

Since you likely already own these, start-up costs are extremely low.

You’ll need to advertise your services on online platforms, like Google Ads and Facebook Ads, to start building up your clientele.

You can choose to start off alone or build an entire consulting firm. Once you build up to full operation you can make around $50,473 annually.

2. Blogger

When done right, blogging can be highly profitable, and be a great home business idea with low startup costs. Many people, like Ryan Robinson, started their online business by sharing their passions through their blogs.

Ryan Robinson, who started a home business and blog , email sign up page

Another example is Elsie and Emma. Their service is online courses helping people grow their social media following, learn video basics, and launch podcasts. They’re like a digital personal trainer.

Elise and Emmas website with ideas about home business' and low startup costs

If you start a business based around a blog, you can expect to earn decent money. From the comfort of your home, you can make up to $40,173 a year from your blogging website.

To start a money-making blog, you need to go beyond blog posts. You’ll need to look to affiliate marketing, sponsorships, and ad displays to generate money.

You will also need to spend time establishing an online presence to build your blog’s audience. You can do this freelance, or as part of a company.

To gain more followers, you’ll need to;

  • Make high-quality posts
  • Utilize SEO
  • Connect with other bloggers
  • Optimize your digital marketing strategy.

Once your blog gains popularity, brands will see that your blog is a lucrative space to advertise and make money. From low startup costs, this business can offer big returns.

Another important thing to keep in mind is that you need a platform to create your blog.

With Zyro’s website builder, you can utilize our drag-and-drop editor and easy-to-use templates to design an attractive blog in no time, without any hassle.

3. Graphic designer

Because brands need help with their visual marketing, graphic design has become a high-demand field. On average, freelance graphic designers make $58,614 annually.

A graphic design business mainly includes coming up with and executing design ideas for clients. Your service might include logos and clothing to designs, and advertisements.

Investing money in a good computer and a creative tablet is useful for creating designs. Since you need specialist equipment, this isn’t the most low-cost business to start, but is cheap to run.

Though having a relevant degree is not a priority, you should acquire enough experience and training to run your business. Consider taking classes to start sharpening your skills.

Don’t forget to master graphic design software, like:

Once you’re ready to launch your business, create a visual portfolio website. Share past personal projects or compose mockup design ideas.

Consider signing up on freelancing platforms like Fiverr and Upwork to search for clients. Alternatively, try creative job marketplaces like Dribbble and Behance to find work.

dribble sign up page for designers and
home business ideas with low startup costs

Finally, take advantage of Instagram. The popular photo-sharing app is a great platform to network with other creatives, partner with businesses, and build a following.

4. Translator

Since many companies are global, the need for translators is growing faster than average. If you’re multilingual, consider starting your own translation service business.

With just a laptop and a fast internet connection, you can make up to $59,670 a year. You can expect to have a higher income if you have a rare language combination.

There are many ways you can find translation jobs from home. Platforms like ProZ and Translated help business owners search for translators.

Other than that, you can promote your service through online ad platforms. This might increase your startup costs a little, but it shouldn’t be too much money in the long run.

translated sign up page for home business ideas with low startup costs

Before starting a business in translation:

  • Refresh your skills and knowledge in the languages you know
  • Try taking refresher courses
  • Practice doing your own translation projects to get started

In addition, you should pick a niche to specialize in. This will help narrow your ideas of skills you want to master and how large your target market size is.

Another tip is to get a certification. Not only will this boost your credibility, but you can also allow you to charge for your services at a higher rate.

In the US, you can register as a translator at the American Translators Association. You can do so in very little time, and can use the credibility to successfully start a business and company.

5. eCommerce seller

With almost two billion people shopping digitally, opening up an eCommerce store can be an excellent path to making money.

It’s estimated 2.14 billion people will be shopping on the web by 2021, this is a huge opportunity for making profits.

But like any business, you will need to allocate costs for certain necessities, such as making the products and promoting them on platforms.

The great thing about this home business idea is that, without a physical store, the low startup costs are obvious. You won’t need to pay for store rent and operations. You can start selling your products and services at home.

Most of your startup costs will, therefore, be for investing in a fast internet connection and making a website.

Using eCommerce platforms like:

With a company like these, you can easily sign up and sell your products in just a few steps. You can also check out competitors for new ideas for business innovations.

You might choose to have your eCommerce home business on a personal website. Use Zyro’s free website builder and begin selling your products from there.

Since Zyro is very affordable and easy to use, you can save time while keeping your startup costs low.

You’ll be able to integrate your website with Google Analytics. This tool provides important information about your site’s visitors to help optimize pages. It costs nothing to use.

As an eCommerce business seller, how much money you make will depend on many factors. These include the type of products and services, as well as the target market.

However, in this business, you can expect a salary of $58,724 a year on average.

6. Private tutor

Private tutoring can be a good home business ideas for those with knowledge in a certain subject. If that sounds like you, consider becoming a personal trainer for the mind.

There are many types of personal lessons you can offer — from music and math to foreign languages and science. Start a business in the field based on your skills and what the market needs.

Generally, your target market will be students who need help with school. However, some adults might hire you for professional or personal purposes.

Becoming a private tutor doesn’t require a certain degree. However, having one related to the subject you teach will allow you to start selling your service at higher rates.

Regardless, it’s important that you have the relevant experience and knowledge of your chosen subject.

To reach out to potential students, you can make a website for your tutoring services. This way, you can link ads to your website and drive people to find your information there.

With a website, you can also be more flexible with your pricing scheme. Depending on the teaching subject and experience, most tutors set an hourly fee between $10 to $40.

Another way to find jobs is by joining tutoring platforms like:

When choosing the right tutoring site, check their reviews. Often, they have a set of requirements you need to comply with before you can start tutoring and start your home business.

7. YouTuber

Ever since YouTube became a viable place to generate cash, people have been flocking to the video platform to test their luck.

It’s understandable to see why — with two billion active users worldwide, YouTube covers all kinds of topics. Therefore, there are many target audiences to tap into.

To be a YouTuber, you need to pick a focus topic that many people are interested in and that you enjoy.

Some popular YouTube topics include:

  • Cooking video
  • Tech review
  • Music cover
  • Virtual tour guide

Also, think of ideas to get creative with your videos. There are about 500 hours of videos uploaded per minute to the platform, which means the competition for views is very high.

Spend time learning some editing skills and invest in the right equipment to make high-quality videos. While startup costs can be low, they might rise as you invest in better gear.

Once your channel is up and running, be sure to target popular trends and set up a regular posting schedule to gain subscribers.

As your subscriber count grows, don’t forget to engage with them through the comment section and social media.

YouTubers with a strong fan base usually have a better chance of generating income from selling merchandise. Follow some successful channels for business ideas.

Most YouTubers start out making money by using Google AdSense. By displaying ads, you can monetize your channel and earn up to $18 per 1,000 views.

As your channel grows, you can look to affiliate marketing and sponsorship to gain more income. If you reach one million subscribers, you can expect to make $57,200 annually.

8. Pet sitter

If you’re an animal lover, consider starting a home pet sitting business. You can take care of other people’s pets for several hours or days while making money at the same time.

How much to charge for your service depends on the local pricing, type of pets you can care for, range of services, and your opening hours, among other things.

Your expenses will also affect the price — such as transportation between clients’ homes.

What’s more, you’ll need a pet sitter insurance to run your business. This will protect you financially in case the pet has any accidents.

On average, pet sitters set an hourly charge between $10 to $20. Meanwhile, an overnight sitting can be up to $80 per night. Charging hourly over a salary can help your income skyrocket with the right amount of business.

One thing to keep in mind is that the pet sitting business has high and low seasons, as more pet owners are likely to hire a sitter during holidays.

Therefore, it’s important to budget your expenses and craft a strong marketing strategy to get people to book your services in off-seasons.

As for the requirements, you need to:

  • Have a good knowledge of the animals you can care for
  • Be physically fit, as pet sitting can be tiring
  • Have a lot of patience with animals
  • Demonstrate a strong sense of responsibility

9. Content writer

Have a knack for writing? Try to start a freelance content writer home business.

More businesses are hiring freelancers to help with their online marketing. Usually, freelance writing will include making content for your client’s website, blogs, or social media.

Since you’ll be working with different businesses, you need to have exceptional research skills and lots of creative business ideas.

This will enable you to write articles on various topics. This will form you into a versatile writer that can craft any copy in any clients’ voice.

Also, as your job is creating content that drives organic traffic to a website, you should learn how to use SEO strategies to start using in your own marketing.

To set up this freelance writing home business ideas, you’ll need a portfolio website so that potential employers have a good idea of what you can do. This can easily be done with low startup costs, and should include:

  • A selection of your best work
  • Some information about you and how you work
  • Your contact details and rates

Link your website on online professional profiles and job boards such as Scripted, Guru, and Truelancer.

scripted homepage, a website to help copywriters start a home business ideas

The costs for a content writer is related to several factors — including the level of expertise and whether they charge per hour, project, or word.

However, you can expect an average income of $51,153 once you have a solid clientele and several years of experience.

10. Event planner

With more people celebrating parties, weddings, and office events, the event planning business is growing. Take advantage of this momentum by becoming an event planner.

As a planner, your responsibilities vary depending on the company you’re working for.

In certain cases, you might need to plan the entire occasion from the beginning to the end.

This means you have to design the concept, contact the vendors, and make sure the event runs smoothly.

Alternatively, some clients might hire you just so you can help them manage the occasion on the day of the event.

For this job, you need to have:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Good people, time and project management skills
  • A background in hospitality.

Also, consider getting a CSEP to equip yourself with the right skill set.

Not only will this allow you to network with professional planners, but it will also boost your service’s credibility.

To find clients, setting up an online presence is important.

You can create a website that displays your past events and details your services. Additionally, you can use social media platforms to document your work and market your service to businesses.

Depending on the location and type of events, you may make about $17 per hour. With a stronger reputation and more years of experience, you can expect to get higher pay.

11. Virtual assistant

A virtual assistant provides clerical services to various people — from solo entrepreneurs to large businesses. It’s an ideal home-based business for those with good organizational skills.

You can expect to do basic tasks a regular assistant does, but remotely. This might include:

  • Managing schedules
  • Writing emails
  • Handling reservations

Since you can work from anywhere, remember to account for the time zone differences if your employer is abroad.

Set up a system that works with both of you so that your working hours are appropriate for your location.

Occasionally, clients might require you to perform non-administrative tasks you have never done before, depending on the field.

For instance, you might need to dabble in bookkeeping, website management, and customer service. With that in mind, be ready in case you need to start an unfamiliar task.

An online resume can be helpful to get hired. You can craft copy to promote yourself and show off your past experience and skills that are essential to the job.

To look for virtual assistant jobs, you may go to sites like Remote.co and FlexJobs.

Generally, a virtual assistant charges per hour, and the average range is between $30 to $60. Factors such as location, special expertise, and experience affect the price rate.

Approximately, virtual assistants can make an annual income of $41,369.

12. Dating consultant

Love helping people find their perfect match? Consider becoming a dating consultant.

With dating apps becoming more popular, people need help in presenting themselves to a potential partner.

Plus, with this home business idea, the startup costs are so low they’re almost nothing.

As a dating consultant, your job is to help clients identify problems in their romantic life, develop interpersonal skills, and help build an attractive persona.

Starting this career doesn’t require specific education. Nonetheless, it would help if you have:

  • Experience in social work
  • A counseling certification
  • Life-coach training.

Such backgrounds allow you to develop the necessary skills — like communication, problem-solving, and rapport-building.

Before you start selling your services in this business, you can offer your services to family and friends first. Use this opportunity to gain feedback on what to improve.

You should also make a website for people to get to know you and book your services. Advertise it on search engines and social media to gain more visibility.

There are two ways you can charge your clients — by the hour or by session.

For entry-level consultants, it’s recommended to start charging $50 per session. Work your way up to higher prices as you gain a stronger reputation and grow your company.

The salary varies with expertise and experience, but on average, dating consultants can make $61,338 per year, making it one of the best home business ideas.

13. Tax consultant

For those who have experience in tax management, starting a company as a tax consultant could be a promising path.

As more individuals and business owners need assistance filing their taxes, the need for more tax professionals has rapidly grown over the years.

Consulting business mainly deals with giving people tax advice — such as:

  • Completing tax files
  • Helping with tax reductions
  • Ensuring clients follow the current tax law

Therefore, it’s recommended to have a degree in finance, accounting, or law first. Alternatively, try finding tax preparer courses online to start.

You can get certified to start your business. In the US, you will need to register with the IRS for a Preparer Tax Identification Number before you can offer tax advice.

Once your business is up and running, expect a starting salary of around $56,743.

14. Online survey taker

Doing surveys online won’t make you rich quick, but it can be a great option to make a steady additional income to your day job.

Depending on the number of surveys you take, you can make up to $300 per month. This is a great home business ideas with low startup costs.

What makes it a great home business and money-making opportunity is it doesn’t require specific skills and can also be done part-time.

Many companies put out surveys for marketing research purposes. You can find them on platforms like:

You can sign up on more sites to raise your income. However, keep in mind that some survey businesses might pay you in gift cards or points rather than cash.

Be careful with sites that require you to give private information. Search for reviews to prevent you from getting scammed.

15. Travel planner

Are you well-versed in traveling and love giving trip recommendations? Try becoming a travel planner.

With the tourism industry continuing to grow, today seems like the best time to start in this business.

What’s more, if you have a travel blog, offering a travel planning service can be a great way to connect with your followers and make extra income from travel businesses.

A travel planner is different from a travel agent, in that they don’t usually book anything for the clients. However, you can offer to do so at a higher price.

This job will require you to provide trip consultations — mainly regarding:

  • Accommodation
  • Transportation
  • Activity options

All these should suit your customers’ budget and interests

You may also create unique travel itineraries according to your clients’ requests.

Every planner prices their services differently. Some charge a flat fee for all clients, while some add more to the cost if a client has a special request. As a travel planner, you can pair up with your favorite travel agency to help you both get an extra commission.

The average yearly salary of a travel planner is $56,703. Your income may get higher as you become more reputable. Making your home business ideas with low startup costs, into a nice salary.

When starting out, consider catering to a niche market — such as family, couples, or solo travelers. This will make you stand out among other travel planners.

3 ways to grow your home business

Want to expand your home business ideas? Here are some ways to grow your lowcost business.

1. Creating a website to sell your products or services

Using a freelancing platform is not enough to get job opportunities. You also need a website to market your services to potential customers.

Making a website is not difficult. Thanks to the Zyro Website Builder, you can create one in no time.

Zyro has a number of templates to choose from for various types of businesses. For instance, this Pet Care template is perfect for a home pet sitting business.

pet walking company called portman

Simply join Zyro, choose a template, and customize it to your needs.

Need help with your content? Zyro’s AI content generator feature will help ease your writing process. Just answer a few questions and it will generate some text options for you.

Don’t have a logo yet? We got you covered. Take advantage of our free logo maker to create a professional logo for your business.

Zyros landing page to create a logo

All Zyro plans have reliable hosting, 24-hour support, and a free SSL certificate. If you need to remove ads, go premium with the Basic or Unleashed plans.

2. Starting an affiliate program

One of the easiest and cheapest ways to promote your home business quickly is by establishing an affiliate program.

It is a marketing tactic where businesses pay third party affiliates to promote their products or services on their platform.

An affiliate can be:

  • An influencer
  • A public figure
  • A content creator.

For example, say you work as a travel planner. To promote your business, you can ask YouTubers to create a video where they mention your services.

They can ask their subscribers to click on a link you provide in the video’s description. You can pay the affiliate every time the link is clicked.

Setting the right commission rates for your affiliates will depend on the profit margins and competition, among other factors.

Additionally, pick people that suit your niche and business to target the right market.

Also, consider joining networks like ShareASale and Commission Junction. They provide many opportunities to partner with affiliates.

On top of that, they let you track your traffic sales, which makes it easy to gather data about your income and commissions.

If you want, you can also set up a collaboration with other business owners for cross-promotion.

For example, if you’re a dating consultant, you can join forces with a relationship coach to promote each other’s services on your platforms.

3. Turning your home business into a franchise

Another way to grow your home business ideas with low cost startup costs is to turn it into a franchise.

Not only will this allow you to expand your target market, but you can also generate more revenue if the business keeps growing.

This is a great method for those who have been running their home business for a while and have made enough profits to expand.

Those with a business model that others can easily replicate can take advantage of this method.

For most people, franchising can seem quite complicated.

There are several legal steps to go through — such as:

  • Preparing a franchise disclosure document
  • Registering for a trademark
  • Establishing a franchising entity.

You should hire a lawyer and a tax preparer so that all the legal requirements can be fulfilled.

On a related note, franchising can be quite expensive. The estimated cost of establishing a franchise starts from $18,500.

Be sure that your business is profitable enough to be franchised. The products or services should cater to a large enough target market to continue making more income.

As you set everything up, don’t forget to determine an appropriate fee for franchisees to set up their operations. Most home-based franchises cost about $10,000.

Additionally, define how much ongoing royalty fees to get from your franchisees. The fee should cover your overhead costs, but generally, it can be up to 8% of the franchise’s total revenue.

Start your low-cost home business today

Our fifteen excellent home business ideas with low startup costs should give you some inspiration:

  1. Social media consultant — offer social media management and advice to clients
  2. Blogger — make money through affiliate marketing, sponsorships, and ad displays
  3. Graphic designer — create visual marketing materials for businesses
  4. Translator — provide translation services to help businesses go global
  5. eCommerce seller — sell products and services on your own online store
  6. Private tutor — offer classes to students and adults that need assistance
  7. YouTuber — make money by creating engaging and creative video content
  8. Pet sitter — set up a home pet sitting business that charges by the hour or day
  9. Content writer — help companies with their digital content marketing strategy
  10. Event planner — assist individuals and organizations managing their special occasions
  11. Virtual assistant — perform administrative tasks and more for clients
  12. Dating consultant — provide expert coaching to people with their love lives
  13. Tax consultant — get certified to offer professional tax advice
  14. Online survey taker — generate an income by doing market research surveys
  15. Travel planner — provide trip recommendations and design itineraries for clients

To get started, pick a home business idea that suits you best.

Grow your home business by making a website, starting an affiliate program, or turning your business into a franchise if possible.

With the Zyro Website Builder, you can make a website for your home business quickly and easily. Just join Zyro, choose a template, edit the content, and publish it.

Can you think of any more home business ideas with low startup costs? If so, let us know.

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