Online Business Ideas for Beginners

Today, I’d like to share some online business ideas for beginners.

I’ve been making money online since 2010. Sometimes, it’s easy to forget what it was like to be a newbie. When I first got started trying to make money online I was excited about the possibilities the internet offered, but I had no idea what I was doing.

I tried to figure everything out on my own. I tried hundreds of different programs and didn’t stick with ANY of them very long. I failed miserably for several years, but I stuck with it and finally figured it out.

Looking back, I’m glad I went through the struggles because I learned a ton of valuable skills. I learned what works and what doesn’t work (at least, for me anyway).

That being said, it would have been nice to have someone to learn from, rather than reinvent the wheel and try to figure out everything on my own. That would have shortened my learning curve significantly.

Plus, rather than just chasing the money, I wish I would have followed my PASSION and INTERESTS. Truth be told, there are THOUSANDS of ways to make money online. What works for someone else might not work for you. Ultimately, you should find something you enjoy AND something that fills a legitimate NEED in the marketplace.

Online Business Ideas for Beginners

Top 7 Online Business Ideas for Beginners

What you will find below are my 7 favorite online business ideas for beginners.

# 1: YouTube Channel

If you’re not camera shy, and you like the idea of making videos, YouTube can be a VERY lucrative way to make money online. It’s one of the best online businesses for beginners, because there is a fairly short learning curve. After all, most people know how to make a video with their phone.

When it comes to turning your YouTube videos into a business, it’s quite simple. You must follow a simple process.

First and foremost, you must pick a niche. In other words, what group of people do you want to create videos for? Here are a few examples:

  • Fishing
  • RV’ing
  • Book Reviews
  • Road Trips
  • Parenting
  • Funny Videos
  • Dolls
  • Model Cars
  • Car Repairs
  • Do it Yourself Tips
  • Weight Loss

Ideally, you should create videos around one core THEME. Yes, you can have a few off topic videos from time-to-time, but the narrower the FOCUS of the videos, the better.

Video marketing is without a doubt one of the biggest reasons Ive been able to create a multiple six figure business online

The next step is to create your videos. You want your videos to be educational or entertaining. Make sure your videos revolve around one topic, are edited, and are fairly short. When it comes to making videos you want to post videos frequently, on some type of set schedule, at least once per week, and preferably, DAILY.

Next, and the most important step, is to build your audience.

Once you have a large audience, you can make a ton of money. Until you have an audience, you won’t make ANY money.

The best way to build your audience is to connect with other YouTubers and to post videos consistently. Make sure you reply to comments and interact with your followers.

The last step is to find different affiliate products to promote. This is pretty easy to do. Here are a few examples:

  1. If your theme is fishing, you can sell different fishing poles and lures.
  2. If your theme is RV’ing, you can promote different RV parts.
  3. If your theme is parenting, you can sell kids clothes, kids books, or anything kid related.

There are literally THOUSANDS of affiliate products for EVERY niche. Most people start with Google Adsense on their videos. That’s a good start, but the real money is made when you promote different affiliate products or sell your own products and services.

If making money on YouTube is something you want to explore, you should check out this book on Amazon.

Suggested Resources for YouTube:

# 2: Sell on eBay

I’ve been selling on eBay since 2003. My wife took over my original store, but you can visit my new store here. It’s been quite profitable, but a lot of hard work (like anything else).

It’s easy to get started on eBay. That’s why it is a great online business idea for beginners. You can start out by selling unwanted items that are laying around your house. Pick 20-30 items you no longer want or use, and sell those items first. That will help you learn the ropes and figure out how everything works on eBay.

Once you’ve done that, you can decide what you want to sell on eBay. I recommend you specialize and sell a certain “line” of products such as clothes, shoes, books, phones, postcards, coins, electronics, etc.

There are TONS of tutorial videos online about how to get started with eBay. That’s the best place to learn more.

Of all the online business ideas I’ve listed, eBay is the FASTEST way to make money online. I highly recommend it!

Suggested Resources for eBay:

# 3: Blogging

For someone who enjoys writing, blogging is a great online business idea for beginners. You can pick a topic or niche you have experience with or are excited about. You can start a blog about that topic.

From there you can write articles about your topic that get ranked high in the search engines. As you start to get traffic to your blog, and build up your following, you can promote different affiliate products, sell advertising, or sell your own products.

I’ve been blogging for about 13-years now. It is by no means fast or easy. I like to think of blogging as a long-term game. However, once you build up a popular blog, it’s easy to maintain.

Marketers always ask me how to make more or better content and its almost always the wrong question

Of all the methods on this list, blogging is probably the slowest UP FRONT income stream, but offers huge long-term potential.

The key to success with blogging is to write great content, build up steady traffic, and have several income streams to monetize your traffic.

One of the biggest benefits of blogging is being able to attract high quality leads- even when you’re not working. The more a lead has contact with you, the more likely you are to make a sale. If you’re putting out valuable content on a consistent basis, you’ll be surprised how much your leads will skyrocket.

Even your older blogs can get you noticed if they’re relevant and answering a question many visitors are searching for. Make sure you’re constantly updating older blogs so they continue to bring in the high-quality traffic.

Source: Hubspot

If blogging interests you, I suggest you check out the resources you see below.

Suggested Resources for Blogging:

# 4: Podcast

Podcasting is a fantastic online business idea for beginners for several compelling reasons:

  • Low Barrier to Entry: Podcasting requires minimal upfront investment. All you need is a decent microphone, recording/editing software (many free options are available), and a hosting platform for your podcast episodes. This affordability makes it accessible to beginners.
  • Creativity and Passion: Podcasting allows you to explore and share your interests and expertise. Whether you’re passionate about a niche hobby, a specific industry, or a particular topic, you can create content that resonates with your audience.
  • Broad Audience Reach: Podcasts have a global reach, and anyone with an internet connection can access them. This offers beginners the opportunity to connect with a wide and diverse audience.
  • Flexibility: You have the flexibility to create content on your own terms. You can set your own schedule, choose your topics, and control the production process. This makes it an ideal business idea for those with busy schedules or other commitments.
  • Monetization Options: While it may take time to build a substantial audience, there are various monetization options available for podcasters. These include sponsorships, advertising, merchandise sales, premium content, and crowdfunding through platforms like Patreon.
  • Networking Opportunities: Podcasting opens the door to networking with experts and influencers in your chosen field. You can invite guests to your show, participate in collaborations, and expand your professional network.
  • Educational Growth: Starting a podcast can be a great learning experience. You can improve your communication, presentation, and content creation skills while building your podcasting business.
  • Analytics and Feedback: Podcasting platforms provide valuable listener analytics and feedback, allowing you to refine your content and understand your audience better.
  • Evergreen Content: Podcast episodes continue to be available to your audience long after they are initially released. This evergreen content can generate ongoing traffic and revenue.
  • Diverse Content Formats: Podcasting isn’t limited to traditional talk shows. You can experiment with various content formats, including interviews, storytelling, panel discussions, and more, giving you creative freedom.

In conclusion, podcasting is an excellent online business idea for beginners due to its low cost, creative potential, wide-reaching audience, flexibility, and diverse monetization opportunities. With dedication, a unique voice, and a commitment to providing valuable content, podcasting can be a fulfilling and profitable venture for those looking to enter the online business world.

Your podcast content should not be about you but about solving your prospects problems

I personally prefer podcasts over videos, especially over having a YouTube channel, because you have a lot LESS competition than the video marketers do.

If podcasting sounds appealing to you, check out the book you see below.

Suggested Resources for Podcasting:

# 5: Freelancer

Becoming a freelancer is a highly appealing online business idea for beginners for several reasons. It offers the freedom to choose the type of work you want to pursue, allowing you to leverage your skills and passions. The low barrier to entry and minimal startup costs make it accessible to newcomers.

Freelancers can set their own schedules and work from virtually anywhere, offering flexibility and work-life balance. With the potential for a diverse client base and the ability to specialize in various niches, freelancers can build a rewarding and sustainable career. Moreover, the gig economy provides opportunities for beginners to gain experience and develop valuable skills while earning income independently.

Freelancers have various avenues to make money by offering their skills, expertise, and services. Here are some common ways freelancers can earn income:

  • Consulting: As a freelance consultant, you can provide expert advice and guidance to businesses and individuals in your field of expertise. This might include management consulting, business strategy, financial planning, or industry-specific advice.
  • Content Creation: Freelancers can create content in various forms, such as writing articles, blog posts, eBooks, or social media content. Content creators are in high demand, particularly in the digital marketing and content marketing sectors.
  • Graphic Design: Graphic designers can offer their services to create visual content, including logos, web graphics, advertisements, brochures, and other promotional materials.
  • Web Development: Freelance web developers can build and maintain websites for clients, ranging from simple one-page sites to complex e-commerce platforms.
  • App Development: For those with programming skills, app development is a lucrative option. You can create mobile or web applications for clients, often on a project basis.
  • Digital Marketing: Freelancers can specialize in various digital marketing aspects, such as search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, social media marketing, and email marketing.
  • Photography and Videography: If you are a skilled photographer or videographer, you can offer your services for events, weddings, corporate projects, or stock photography and videography sales.
  • Virtual Assistance: Freelance virtual assistants provide administrative, organizational, and other support services to businesses and entrepreneurs, which can include managing emails, scheduling, bookkeeping, and data entry.
  • Online Teaching and Tutoring: Freelancers can share their knowledge by offering online tutoring or teaching services, such as teaching languages, academic subjects, or specialized skills through platforms like Udemy, Teachable, or online tutoring services.
  • Social Media Management: Managing social media accounts for businesses and individuals, including creating content, scheduling posts, and engaging with the audience, is a growing niche for freelancers.
  • Copywriting: Freelance copywriters specialize in writing persuasive and engaging copy for marketing materials, advertisements, websites, and more.
  • Translation and Interpretation: Bilingual or multilingual freelancers can offer translation and interpretation services to individuals and businesses, helping bridge language gaps.
  • Voiceover and Audio Services: If you have a good voice and audio recording skills, you can offer voiceover services for commercials, podcasts, audiobooks, and more.
  • Illustration and Art: Artists and illustrators can create custom artwork, illustrations, and designs for various purposes, including book covers, marketing materials, and digital art.
  • Data Entry and Data Analysis: Freelancers with strong data skills can provide data entry, analysis, and reporting services to clients who need assistance with managing and making sense of their data.
  • Event Planning: Freelance event planners can help individuals and organizations organize and coordinate events, from weddings and parties to corporate functions and conferences.
  • Interior Design: If you have a flair for interior design, you can offer your services to clients looking to beautify their homes or offices.
  • Coaching and Personal Development: Offer coaching services in various areas such as career coaching, life coaching, health and fitness coaching, or personal development coaching.
  • E-commerce Services: Assist businesses in setting up and managing e-commerce stores, including product listings, order fulfillment, and customer service.
  • Project Management: Freelance project managers can help businesses plan, execute, and oversee projects to ensure they meet their objectives on time and within budget.

Remember that the demand for specific freelance services may vary depending on your location, expertise, and market trends. It’s essential to research your target market and identify your niche to maximize your earning potential as a freelancer.

Suggested Resources for Freelancers:

728 In general 97 of freelancers are happier than permanent employees

# 6: Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist

Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace provide a versatile platform to sell a wide range of items and make money online. Here are some popular categories of items you can sell on these platforms:

  • Furniture: Couches, tables, chairs, and other furniture items are commonly sold as people often upgrade or downsize their living spaces.
  • Electronics: Gently used or older electronics like smartphones, laptops, gaming consoles, and TVs can find interested buyers.
  • Appliances: Kitchen appliances, washing machines, and refrigerators are in demand, especially when they’re in good working condition.
  • Clothing and Accessories: Sell gently worn or new clothing, shoes, handbags, and jewelry. Vintage or designer items can be particularly valuable.
  • Home Decor: Decorative items, artwork, lamps, and rugs are often sought after for home improvement projects.
  • Toys and Baby Gear: Children’s toys, strollers, car seats, and baby equipment are frequently sold items for parents looking to save money.
  • Collectibles: Vintage and collectible items like coins, stamps, antiques, and memorabilia can have a niche market.
  • Tools and Equipment: Hand and power tools, gardening equipment, and automotive tools are popular in this category.
  • Sporting Goods: Bicycles, sports equipment, exercise machines, and outdoor gear are commonly sold for athletic and outdoor enthusiasts.
  • Books and Media: You can sell books, DVDs, CDs, vinyl records, and video games, especially if they’re in good condition and sought-after titles.
  • Musical Instruments: Guitars, keyboards, and other musical instruments can fetch a good price if they’re well-maintained.
  • Home Improvement Materials: Unused or leftover building materials, such as tiles, lumber, or plumbing fixtures, can be in demand for DIY projects.
  • Vehicles and Parts: While larger items, cars, and motorcycles can be sold on Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace can be used to sell vehicle parts and accessories.
  • Pets and Pet Supplies: You can sell pet products, as well as accessories, toys, and even adopt out pets, although adoption should be approached with caution and ethics.
  • Handmade or Crafted Items: If you’re a crafter or artist, you can sell your handmade items, such as jewelry, art, or custom crafts.
  • Vintage and Retro Items: Vintage clothing, furniture, and collectibles often attract collectors and nostalgia enthusiasts.
  • Outdoor and Camping Gear: Tents, camping equipment, fishing gear, and hiking accessories are suitable for outdoor enthusiasts.
  • Kitchenware and Cookware: Pots, pans, small appliances, and kitchen gadgets can be sold if in good condition.
  • Wedding and Event Items: Items like wedding dresses, party decor, and event supplies can be sold after their initial use.
  • Services: Some people offer services like home cleaning, photography, or handyman services on these platforms.

Remember to ensure that your listings include high-quality photos and detailed descriptions. It’s essential to price items fairly and respond promptly to potential buyers to maximize your sales. While these platforms offer great opportunities for making money, exercise caution when dealing with buyers and sellers, especially for high-value items or potentially risky transactions.

Suggested Resources for Craigslist & Marketplace:

# 7: Network Marketing

I will never provide a list of ways to make money online and NOT include network marketing. I love network marketing, am very successful at it, and build my business 100% online, just like an affiliate marketer.

The reason network marketing is one of the best online business ideas for beginners is because:

  1. Inexpensive to start.
  2. Low monthly overhead.
  3. Free training.
  4. Free systems to follow.
  5. Personal development.
  6. A successful mentor to help you free of charge.
  7. Global business opportunity.
  8. High quality products.
  9. Earn a leveraged, residual income.
  10. And many other things!

These are just a few reasons that come to mind. Network marketing is not perfect, and it has its share of critics, but I believe network marketing offers the BIGGEST POTENTIAL of all the ideas listed on this page. Learn more about the company I work with. 

Keep in mind, network marketing has changed since your grandma did it. The days of chasing everyone you know, having home parties, taking orders, and making deliveries are long gone. All you need now is a cell phone, internet connection, and email account. If I can do it, so can you!

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, these are my best online business ideas for beginners. I believe any of these online business ideas for beginners will work for you if you get started, make a plan, get to work and never look back. No, you won’t get rich overnight, but you can build up a substantial part-time business or side hustle with endless possibilities.

What are your thoughts? What business model did I leave out and should have included? Leave a comment below to share your thoughts. I look forward to hearing from you. Have a great day!

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chuck holmes


Chuck Holmes
Network Marketing Professional (since 2002)
Author, Blogger, & Entrepreneur

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