Software drives businesses today. This is a fact not lost on individuals and companies attempting to earn a profit, make a name for themselves, or simply get things done. As a result, the job outlook for software developers will be much sunnier than prospects for many other occupations—creating massive opportunities for this business idea well into  the future. In fact, it won’t take you long to find a good-paying software development project as a side business idea on sites like Upwork, Guru.com, and Freelancer. LinkedIn also recently launched their brand new freelancing platform, ProFinder which has a dedicated section just for hiring talented software developers.

Acorns works by essentially rounding up the spare change from your everyday purchases (to the nearest dollar) and then invests the difference into the stock market. If you’re clueless about how the stock market works, but still want the highest return you can possibly make on your money, this is the perfect way to start investing. You can read our full Acorns Review here.

Once you have one or two samples to show prospective clients, it's then time to find some. Sites like Freelancer and Upwork are good places to start out. But you don't need to stick to the same path taken by every other freelance writer. Use some lateral thinking to find clients. Join relevant groups on Facebook or LinkedIn. Have a look for forums dedicated to web development, digital marketing or SEO – there's almost always a “writers for hire” section you can use to find new clients.


If you like to write and have a passion or an interest that others’ share, then a blog can not only be a great creative outlet, but a way to work online. Bloggers can make money many different ways – from advertising to affiliate marketing to link selling to using it as a base to offer other goods and services, such as selling eBooks or offering a coaching or writing service. A blog can be your business in itself or it may just be the platform that you use to help sell your service. Either way this can be a profitable endeavor if you go into it with the right mindset and a plan to monetise.

Yoga is getting ever more popular, which means yoga instructors are more in demand than ever—making this another physically rewarding side business idea. Link up with a local yoga studio to teach nightly classes or offer personalized yoga in-home at a higher rate to pursue this kind of emotional and physical balance with others, during your free time while helping your bank balance, too.


Simply put, you should have a Website Disclaimer as soon as you launch your website. The very nature of the Internet means that you never know who’s going to visit your site, or whether they’ll try to come up with a reason to sue you. You are exposed to litigation from the moment you start your online business – so put a stop to it with a strong Website Disclaimer.

When many people think about selling items on Amazon, they think about setting up their own product or starting a shop. However, there are many different ways to make money on Amazon and a popular and lucrative way is through market arbitrage. Basically, you find products that you can buy for cheaper prices than what they sell for on Amazon. You then buy them, list them on Amazon and ship them off to an Amazon fulfillment centre. Amazon then handles any orders and any customer service around this. This is a great guide which explains all about what it is and how to go about it.


Online sites like Etsy and ArtFire are platforms that make it extremely easy for crafters who can produce a steady supply of quality handmade items, like crocheted blankets or unique painted glassware. Startup costs are extremely low if you purchase your materials in bulk from a craft supplier, and if you can turn around orders quickly, you'll be making a profit in no time at all. It's even possible to turn your store into a full-time gig.
The most trending businesses are; 1. Affiliate Marketing, 2. Facebook Page E-commerce, 3. Teaching online courses, 4. Social media consultant, & 5. eBook author: Publish your book online. Affiliate Marketing leads to be one of the strong and productive ways to make money online. There are a lot of online business ideas, but these five plans will be so obvious to start an online business without risk.
One of the easiest ways to make a few bucks online is affiliate marketing. An affiliate is essentially someone who receives a commission for selling products for other companies, whether it’s on their own site or through another channel like eBay. The best part is that you don’t have to develop any products yourself, just sell other people’s products.
Robert said he did an average of 4-6 of these gigs per year for a while depending on his schedule and the work involved. The best part is, he charged a flat rate that usually worked out to around $100 per hour. And remember, this was pay he was earning to advise people on the best ways to use social media tools like Facebook and Pinterest to grow their brands.
YouTube is the third largest site in the world, so there’s no surprise that video is becoming one of the main communication mediums for businesses of all types and sizes. If you have video filming or editing knowledge, it won’t take you long to build your clientele. Everything from video production workshops and video editing services to soundtrack libraries and DIY tutorials can appeal to the business world. Producing a video might be one of the most attractive online business ideas with lots of creativity and challenges.

nbn satisfaction guarantee: Available to eligible customers connecting a new nbn service with Telstra and who lets us know that they are not happy with their nbn services within 30 days of their nbn connection.  We will refund your monthly plan fee for that first month (not including usage charges) and any standard Telstra installation, connection or activation fees (not including any nbn co fees we have passed on). We will also waive early termination fees and you will not be required to return any hardware  (excluding Foxtel hardware)  that Telstra may have provided as part of your nbn plan (for example, the Telstra Business Smart modem™). Maximum of one claim per year, per person. This guarantee does not affect any other rights or remedies you may have under consumer law.

Sammi Caramela has always loved words. When she isn't working as a Business.com and Business News Daily staff writer, she's writing (and furiously editing) her first novel, reading a YA book with a third cup of coffee, or attending local pop-punk concerts. Sammi loves hearing from readers - so don't hesitate to reach out! Check out her short stories in Night Light: Haunted Tales of Terror, which is sold on Amazon.


As I’ve already covered with TeeSpring, the T-shirt retailing business is worth millions of dollars. But what if you want to do the manufacturing side of things? T-shirt printing turns out to be quite a rewarding business idea for many each year, but can quickly consume much of your side business idea time—so know what you're getting into before diving in. This multi-billion dollar industry counts big corporate factories as well as home-based part-time entrepreneurs.

It’s a great way to achieve freedom in your life. Not only does copywriting allow you to work remotely, but it also allows you to control your schedule. Plus, learning the skill itself will help you in many areas of online business (i.e. building a blog, affiliate marketing, etc. – when you can write in a compelling way, all of these become much easier!)

There you have it – a  comprehensive guide to the best online businesses to start this year. We deliberately didn't cover ideas like app development or IT support because they require specialized skills. That's why we only provided you with businesses you can start with very little money. In fact, you can even start some of them with very little knowledge.
With apps being constantly developed, competent app developers are in high demand. Again, if you have the experience or skills to create successful apps then this could be something you could end up working on as a full-time freelancer. Check out adverts for developers on Toptal, a higher paying jobs site for experienced freelancers wanting to make money online.
Corrisa, thank you for adding your thoughts on Annie’s list. I wholeheartedly agree with your points to consider and would encourage anyone looking to join a network marketing-based business to do their due diligence before signing up. As I have found in my past ventures into home based businesses, the KEY to success is to treat your business as exactly that and not a hobby or trending fad.

If you have a talent for helping people look their best, and know how to mesmerize with eyeliners and turn heads with lipsticks, consider using your beauty skills to pursue this easily profitable side business idea. For under $2000, you can start your own make-up artist business which can make for the foundation of a potentially lucrative side business idea that turns a profit largely by referrals and word-of-mouth from your happy customers.


Social media is a booming industry and is only going to continue to increase in popularity. Companies both large and small are in need of social media assistance and are often happy to have an expert manage their social media presence part-time. There are plenty of social media training courses available and getting started is easier than you’d think! Similarly, with Google being such a valuable source of traffic for website owners, starting an SEO company is something you could also consider!
Got a thing for numbers? Plenty of companies need to hire talented contractors who are good at data analysis, making this a potentially lucrative side business idea if you have the right credentials and experience. Platforms like Upwork and Digiserved are but a two of many websites that are great for freelancers with an analytical prowess, looking for extra work as a side business idea around their full-time jobs.

Fast growth usually ends badly for most businesses. Fast growth may not be manageable without the right people. Build for the future. Target small areas where you can avoid big encounters that are able to take you out of business in just a few minutes. Remember to research those ideas, make sure that the idea is feasible, and try to find a niche product with low competition and high demand, preferable something you are already familiar with. Then start implementing the idea by starting small and continue with slow and stable growth. Long term earnings are always greater than short term earnings.
If cooking is one of your personal passions, there are dozens of opportunities to turn it into a decent business venture. You can start by setting up a catering website, experimenting with pop-up food stalls and local food markets, or joining platforms that encourage cooking enthusiasts to squeeze some money out of their passion. And if you’re not camera-shy, you can teach people how to cook special meals by selling online classes. 

If you are a creative type, then you could make money online by designing and selling crafty products on Etsy. Etsy sells a range of beautiful and original items from independent suppliers. Categories range from jewelry, clothes, and accessories, to art, collectibles, and vintage. So if you have some stunning crafty creations, Etsy is the perfect platform from which to sell from.

There are many ways in which a business can develop a website and the type of web presence you create will vary from other businesses. To stand out from the growing number of businesses, you'll need to find a way to make your online presence unique. Even if your product or service isn't a one-off, try to think of an approach that will make it stand out.

When you’ve discovered the path that’s right for you, the internet is a place of unlimited opportunities to create income. Investing your resources, time and energy in the right things means that you’ll be able to reap the benefits in the future, without the high start-up costs. Remember, these are just some of the ways you might be able to earn money legally online, so do your research if you aren’t sure any of these ideas will work for you.

While Etsy is fantastic for handmade goods that you’ve already created, if you’ve got killer designs that would look good on phone cases, t-shirts, or even wall hangings, pillows, and duvets, you can sell them on Society6 without paying anything to start. Society6 lets artists upload their designs and create their own shops where they choose what products their designs can be used on. That means one design can be used to make a whole range of awesome products that are printed and shipped on demand whenever someone buys from you. With top creators making thousands every month just from selling their designs.
Matched betting is the process of basically betting against yourself so that whatever outcome occurs, you win. For example, you might place a bet that horse 2 wins a race. You also bet that any horse BUT horse 2 wins the race. If you are able to place these bets spending less money that what you can win whichever outcome occurs, then you are always going to end up ahead. This is how matched betting works. There are lots of online betting services which can help you with this. A positive on this approach to money making is that you will not have to pay tax on any earnings either.
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