You don't have to be a big-box retailer to start an online store. Whether you sell directly to consumers or use a drop-shipping service, all you need is a website and the right e-commerce software to get started. You can sell your own products or items from niche suppliers. Alternatively, if you're crafty, you can also sell your own handcrafted creations on ebay , flipkart or similar online marketplaces.
Do you love throwing parties and organizing meetings? Start an event-planning business and turn your passion into a profitable small business. Everyone needs event planners, from individuals to organizations and corporations — and with the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics predicting 44 percent growth in the meeting, convention and event-planning industry between 2010 and 2020, there will certainly be no shortage in demand for your services. As an event planner, you will need to be resourceful and have a keen eye for detail. You will also need the patience to deal with clients' demands and the Zen to stay calm during stressful situations and unforeseen disasters.
Home-based food services
If baking or cooking is in your DNA, consider launching a home-based bakery, personal chef or catering business. You can whip up your concoctions for individuals, events, and local businesses and organizations. Not only is it a rewarding opportunity to make money doing what you love, but it's also a great way to test your culinary chops before investing in a full-fledged brick-and-mortar establishment. Keep in mind that home-based food businesses are heavily regulated, so start by figuring out the rules and regulations in your area.
Virtual assistants are all the rage. All you need to get started is a laptop and a good website. A social media presence doesn't hurt, either. If you've got a background in administrative work but want to work for yourself, this might be a perfect opportunity for you. Virtual assistants work remotely and do all the things a business owner or manager doesn't have time to do, such as open and answer emails, follow up with customers, invoice customers or pay bills. All of these tasks and more can all be done from your own home via the cloud.
Social media consultant
If you're one of those Gen Y types to whom using social media comes as naturally as breathing, you may have a career as a social media consultant . There's no doubt that social media presents an unprecedented marketing opportunity for businesses, but only if they know how to use it. If you can help existing businesses integrate social media into their other marketing campaigns, you should have no trouble making a go of it.
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