The 27 best online business ideas in 2023

Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

If you are thinking of starting an online business, this is the right time. According to forecasts, sales revenue in online businesses will amount to 6.5 trillion dollars in 2022.

This shows that the number of people who prefer to shop online is constantly increasing. This is an excellent opportunity to open more eCommerce businesses.

Table of Contents
Why start an online business?
The best online business ideas to start
1. Become a freelancer
2. Start a blog
3. Self-publish an eBook
4. Launch an online store
5. Start a Dropshipping Business
6. Resell Used Items
7. Sell handicrafts
8. Sell prints
9. Launch a subscription box
10. Start a consulting business
11. Do affiliate marketing
12. Resell Websites
13. Buy and sell domain names
14. Design WordPress Themes
15. Develop apps
16. Offer Social Media Marketing services
17. Work as an SEO consultant
18. Become a virtual assistant
19. Launch a Data Entry service
20. Offer transcription services
21. Create online courses
22. Give private lessons online
23. Create a podcast
24. Launch a YouTube channel
25. Write guest posts
26. Write resumes and cover letters
27. Become a Technical Writer
Which of these online businesses is the best for you?

How long does it take to start making money online?
How much money can I earn?
How much time a day should I dedicate to my online business?
Will I need to hire employees?
Why start an online business?
These are some of the reasons why people decide to start online businesses:

1.Become a freelancer

As the freelance market has become more competitive, you have to come up with a unique service to differentiate yourself. One way to do this is to define your ideal customers, as freelance writer Elise Dopson, who focuses on B2B and SaaS companies, does.

2.start a blog

Estimated income: $100-$10,000 per month, depending on the blog’s operating expenses and monetization channels.
Requirements: Writing skills, content marketing and SEO.
Creating a blog is one of the most profitable online business ideas on this list. Many entrepreneurs with six-figure incomes,

like Pat Flynn, they started by writing a blog about their skills and knowledge for a small audience.

Smart Passive Income Home Page
But creating a successful blog is about more than just sharing your thoughts on a topic. When starting, remember to focus on the following elements:

Content quality. The more valuable information you offer your audience, the more likely they are to become loyal readers. Not to mention that the blog will have a better chance of ranking better in search engines.
Traffic volume. Bloggers with a high volume of visitors are often more likely to attract potential business partners and sell their own products or services.
Monetization options. Diversifying the sources to generate income on the blog will make it easier to obtain the maximum benefits. Standard methods include affiliate marketing, Google ads, and sponsored content.

Photo by Yannick Pulver on Unsplash

3. Self-publish an eBook

Estimated revenue: Depending on the platform, you can earn between 35% and 75% of royalties for each eBook sold. Keep in mind that production costs for the book can range from $100 to $6,000.
Requirements: Creative writing skills
Thanks to the Internet, becoming an author no longer requires submitting a manuscript to a publisher. It is now possible to sell eBooks using a personal website or self-publishing sites, such as Amazon KDP.

If you’re a blogger, eBooks are great for bringing together the content you already have into one comprehensive guide. That’s what Elna Cain does with her long articles. To add more value to the product, she inserts some printable worksheets.

However, self-publishing sites offer the advantage of a pre-acquired audience, although you won’t be able to claim the full earnings from the eBook. This is why many writers create a site as an additional monetization channel to increase their income.

4. Launch an online store

Estimated revenue: $1,000-$100,000 per year, depending on the size of the market, as well as the eCommerce store and operating expenses.
Requirements: knowledge of business management, digital marketing and site maintenance.
Creating an online store is one of the most profitable online business ideas you can try. With the right strategy, you could be the next person to launch a multi-million dollar brand.

The products and services that can be offered are endless. To ensure sales success, you can check what are the trends of the moment.

Or, try to tap into a micro-niche. It may have little traffic at first, but it also means low competition and considerable growth potential.

A prime example of a successful micro-niche is Neuro, a caffeinated gum and mint candy company. The founders created the product as a healthier alternative to energy drinks and coffee.

Neuro landing page, micro niche online business
In addition to displaying the products on your eCommerce site, you can sell on social networks like Facebook or Instagram. Diversifying your sales channels can broaden your audience reach, which can lead to increased revenue.

5. Start a Drops hipping Business

Estimated income: between $200 and $3,000 per month. Revenues may vary depending on the online store and the size of the market.
Requirements: business management skills, digital marketing and site maintenance.
Drop shipping is one of the best online business ideas if you want to earn money from home. In this business model, you partner with a vendor to sell their products on your platform. The supplier is responsible for storing and shipping the items, while the seller is focused on marketing the products to customers.

By not having to deal with inventory management, the initial capital is usually much less. The average cost of creating a drop shipping site is $150, which includes a web hosting service, a domain name, and a listing on a supplier directory, such as Al dropship.

Ali Dropship Wholesale Drop shipping Site Home Page
Of course, keep in mind that it will not be possible to see the quality of the product or control the shipping process in real-time. To avoid any issues, we recommend that you research providers first before working with them.

6. Resell Used Items

Estimated income: between $50 and $5,000 per month. The cost of products can range from $0 to $1,000 per item.
Requirements: business administration and negotiation skills.
If you’re looking for an affordable online business idea, consider reselling second-hand items to make a profit:

Look for good quality unused items around your house.
buy item Buy cheap or free used books at thrift stores, flea markets, or websites like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace.
Once you have the items to sell, calculate their market value to determine a fair price. One way to do this is to find out how much similar products of similar quality sell for.

In some cases, it may be necessary to repair or recycle the item to increase its value. Therefore, it can help to have some basic crafting skills, although it is not a prerequisite.

For more small business-turned-big inspiration, visit Flea Market Flipper. This site offers a complete course on how to turn product sales into a full-time job.

7. Sell handicrafts

Estimated income: According to Recruiter, the average income within this industry is more than $30,000 per year.
Requirements: craft or craft skills.
The Internet has made it easy for artisans to turn their work into a profitable business.

Unlike merchants who partner with vendors, artisans have the advantage of selling unique products that customers can’t find anywhere else. Because of this, it is possible to charge higher prices for handicrafts.

If you need examples of successful artists selling their work online, check out Bridget Bodenham’s e-commerce store.

Bridget Bodenham Crafts website home page
Another way to sell handmade products online is by using Etsy. With over 60 million buyers, this platform can make it easy to find your ideal customers. Of course, be prepared to compete for the attention of users with other merchants.

8. Sell prints

Estimated revenue: Sellers typically charge 10–20% of the total cost of production to price each print.
Requirements: Visual artistic skills, such as photography, graphic design, or fine art.
Selling prints is one of the best online business ideas for visual artists. In addition to earning money, it offers fans the chance to exhibit your work in their homes.

One of the easiest ways to sell prints is to create an online store and hire a print-on-demand service like Printful. This option allows you to do more artwork and focus on promoting the business while taking care of execution and shipping.

Some companies also sell full-size digital files of their prints, such as A Beautiful Mess. In this way, customers can take care of the printing and framing themselves.

9. Launch a subscription box

Estimated Income: According to Starter Story reports, income can range from $6,000 to over $400,000 per month.
Requirements: knowledge of business management, digital marketing and website maintenance.
A subscription box service is a business model that delivers a package of products periodically to customers, like Dollar Shave Club.

These services have gained more ground in recent years. Reports reveal that 54% of online shoppers subscribe to at least one subscription box service, usually for reasons like personalized experience and convenience.

The main advantage of running a subscription box service is that the merchant can generate recurring income and foster a long-term relationship with customers. Now, to be successful in this online business you need a product that people are willing to pay for repeatedly.

A good example is Butcher Box. This subscription service offers several types of meat, a staple for many households. The brand uses its organic sourcing as a unique selling point to offer customers more value when purchasing their product.

10. Start a consulting business

Estimated earnings: $60 to $400+ per hour, depending on industry and skills.
Requirements: knowledge and experience in a specific field.
This is another great online business idea for people who have advanced knowledge in a certain field. The job here is to help people solve their company’s problems, whether they are related to marketing, operations or human resources.

The challenge of building a consulting business is finding clients, especially when you’re just starting out. If you want a large prospect pool, consultant Kate Bagoy recommends focusing on LinkedIn lead generation and personalized emails for the first six months.

Home page of Kate Bagoy, online business consultant

11. Do affiliate marketing

Estimated income: between 300 and $10,000 per day, depending on the affiliate program and the niche.
Requirements: content marketing skills.
Affiliate marketing is one of the most affordable online business ideas to start. What you will have to do is:

Promote the products or services of a brand through your content
Include affiliate links to redirect users to the affiliated eCommerce store
Typically, the promoter receives a commission each time someone clicks on the link and makes a purchase.

One way to start this online business is to create a blog focused on recommending products. An excellent example is Baby Gear Lab, a site dedicated to essential baby products.

12. Resell Websites

Estimated income: between $10,000 and $100,000 per year.
Requirements: knowledge of web development, web design, SEO and digital marketing.
Website reselling is a slower money-generating scheme compared to other ideas on the list. However, like Yaro Starak, many entrepreneurs manage to generate hundreds of thousands of dollars with this business model.

The process often starts with buying underperforming sites or potential online businesses. Sites like Flippa sell and auction off loads of them for one low price.

Once the deal is done, start working on website improvements. In general, you have to increase the value of the website by adjusting its SEO structure, improving its functionality and looking for the most effective monetization methods to earn money.

The website must generate a significant amount of traffic and revenue before being listed for sale. Buyers are often willing to pay much more for a site that shows good profitability.

To price the site, calculate your annual revenue and multiply the total by two or three. For example, if an online store earns $1,200 a year, the price can range from $2,400 to $3,600.

13. Buy and sell domain names

Estimated revenue: $1,000-$10,000 per domain.
Requirements: knowledge of digital marketing.
With the right strategy, buying and selling domain names can be one of the best profitable online business ideas. Domains can sell for millions of dollars, especially if they are in high demand.

Unfortunately, domains with these criteria are often not available. For this reason, many resellers tend to target names with local keywords, such as, which tends to have less competition.

To get started, look for affordable domains on a domain checker or on auction sites like Sedo. Consider buying multiple names at once to increase sales opportunities.

The next step is to search for buyers, which can be done by creating a landing page on the domain name or sending proposals by email to potential interested parties.

14. Design WordPress Themes

Estimated revenue: $5-$200 or more for each theme sold.
Requirements: In addition to knowledge of web design and front-end development, it is good to be familiar with CMS like WordPress.
Selling website themes is a great online business for web designers looking to earn some extra money. As more people launch their own sites, the demand for attractive and easy-to-use pre-built designs also increases.

To increase the value of a theme, consider including regular updates and technical support in the package. Another option is to offer a custom theme service. Online businesses are often willing to pay thousands of dollars for a unique design.

You can sell the theme on your own website or publish it on a marketplace, like TemplateMonster. This last option offers greater exposure, although it charges sales commissions.

15. Develop apps

Estimated earnings: According to Code mentor, the median wage is $61-$80 per hour.
Requirements: knowledge of app development, UI/UX design and product management.
If you have an idea that can be well translated into a mobile app, consider this business idea. Today, people turn to apps to solve a variety of problems, from increasing productivity to staying focused.

Those with no app development experience can look into online learning platforms, such as Treehouse. It is also possible to use software like Appy Pie to become an app developer without any programming knowledge.

Some of the ways to earn money as an app developer

These include displaying ads and including in-app purchases. It is also possible to sell the app on marketplaces like Flippa.

16. Offer Social Media Marketing services

Estimated earnings: $15-$80 an hour, depending on skills and years of experience.
Requirements: content marketing skills and being on top of social media trends.
This is a great online business idea for those with a strong social media presence. Many small businesses need a marketing expert to reach social media users, especially if they are targeting a younger group.

The job is to take advantage of all available social media marketing techniques to increase brand visibility, build a following, and encourage audience engagement. These techniques can include content creation, social listening, and influencer marketing.

In addition to using your own social media profile, you can create a portfolio website or blog to advertise your services, like Nadine from The Social Shells does.

17. Work as an SEO consultant

Estimated earnings: According to Ahrefs, the median rate is $68 per hour.
Requirements: Knowledge of on-page, off-page, and technical search engine optimization.
SEO has become one of the most important success factors for online businesses. It is not only a cost-effective way to build brand awareness but also to generate high-quality traffic.

SEO consultants advise clients on how to optimize their websites for search engines. Since the job market is competitive, consider choosing a specialization or customer segment to target. This can make you the go-to person for specific services.

Finally, remember to be aware of the latest updates to the Google search algorithm to offer the latest and most relevant information to your customers.

18. Become a virtual assistant

Estimated Earnings: Indeed reports that the median wage is $19 per hour in the United States.
Requirements: knowledge of administration and digital marketing.
A virtual assistant is a person who helps business owners or entrepreneurs with administrative tasks, such as scheduling appointments and answering questions.

In some cases, virtual assistants also offer marketing assistance, such as writing email newsletters and managing social media accounts. According to The Penny Hoarder, this skill set can increase your rate by as much as $60 per hour.

To start a business as a virtual assistant, search for jobs on portals like Fiverr and Upwork. Also, you can create a website to market your services, such as Virtual Nina Creative.

Homepage of Virtual Nina Creative, virtual assistance online business

19. Launch a Data Entry service

Estimated income: Starting at $14 an hour.
Requirements: An average typing speed of 60 to 90 words per minute and a good command of data processing software.
Data Entry is a great online business idea for those looking for a side or part-time job. Many businesses need professionals to document information from various sources, such as daily sales reports or meeting notes, in an organized digital format.

The faster and more accurate your typing work, the higher your hourly rate can be. Therefore, it is convenient to do some online practice courses before creating a business in this field. Websites like Keybr are good places to do this.

Also, it might be a good idea to invest in a number pad to increase your typing speed.

20. Offer transcription services

Estimated income: Starting at $5 an hour.
Requirements: Good listening skills, writing speed, and command of data processing software.
This online business idea is similar to the previous option. The difference is that you will specialize in transcribing audio files to text documents.

In addition to typing speed and accuracy, the niche you choose can affect the number of earnings. Medical transcriptionists generally have the highest pay, averaging $26 per hour. If you want to aim for this rate, prepare yourself and familiarize yourself with the sector.

To find transcription jobs, check out Rev and TranscribeMe.

21. Create online courses

Estimated income: between $1,000 and $50,000 per month, depending on production costs, the online course platform, and the number of students.
Requirements: Teaching skills and subject matter experience.
This is one of the best online businesses for those who love to share their knowledge with others.

22. Give private lessons online

Estimated Earnings: Median wage is $17 per hour.
Requirements: Experience in a school subject or standardized test, as well as teaching skills.
Starting an online tutoring business is another great option for those with teaching experience. With distance learning the new normal, many parents need help with their children’s education.

Sites like Skooli are great for finding tutoring jobs. Its integrated user base will make it easy to connect with students looking for your services.

After you get a sizable group of clients, create a website featuring your tutoring business. If you need some inspiration, this BMAT Crash Course site is a great example.

23. Create a podcast

Estimated income: $500 to $10,000+ per month, depending on monetization channels and the number of downloads. Production can cost as low as $80 for audio equipment, recording software, and hosting included.
Requirements: communication skills, audio editing and management of social networks.
Podcasts have become a popular method of content consumption, especially among the younger generations. Therefore, many people take this opportunity to start a podcasting business.

To set your podcast apart from the rest, consider targeting a micro-niche. One example is The Pen Addict, which focuses on pen-related issues. Although its scope seems limited, this program has managed to attract a loyal group of enthusiasts.

The Pen Addict home page
Create a site to host your podcasts, then upload them to Spotify or Apple Music. Don’t forget to establish a social media presence to reach potential listeners.

Beginning podcasters often make money through affiliate marketing. Once your audience grows, you can create a Patreon page to raise funds, or you can join an ad network like Midroll.

24. Launch a YouTube channel

Estimated income: $5,000 a month is the average salary for a YouTuber with one million subscribers.
Requirements: communication skills, video editing and management of social networks.
With the rise of YouTubers, video content creation has become a viable option for starting an online business. Some channels have managed to create a six-figure revenue business model from this video-sharing platform.

There are numerous types of video content to create, many of which can be done at home. For example, product reviews, reactions, software tutorials or cooking recipes.

If you decide to become a YouTuber, you should focus on getting 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of viewing in the first few months. In this way, you will be able to access the Youtube Partner Program. Only then will it be possible to earn money from the channel using AdSense.

If you want to make a full-time income with less than a million subscribers, you can try doing it through Patreon crowdfunding, affiliate marketing, or sponsored content.

25. Write guest posts

Estimated earnings: $5 to $2,000 per blog post, depending on length and quality.
Requirements: knowledge of writing, content marketing and SEO.
This internet business idea is great for those who want to make money writing online without creating their own blog site.

The task is to submit articles to a blog that accepts and pays guest writers. In many cases, the website owner may ask you to write the article using their name instead of yours.

Many websites are open to the publication of guest articles. It is best to choose ones that use a style and niche that you are familiar with to make the writing process easier.

Photo by Nick Morrison on Unsplash

26. Write resumes and cover letters

Estimated income: $50-$300 per resume.
Requirements: In addition to writing and personal branding skills, you will need

Be familiar with the recruitment process and the applicant tracking system.
Now that the job market is increasingly competitive, people need someone to write the perfect resume for them.

That’s where you come in. This online business idea consists of writing resumes and cover letters for clients looking for a new job. The key is to make your application effective and increase your chances of getting the job.

27. Become a Technical Writer

Estimated revenue: between $400 and $2,500 per project.
Requirements: writing, communication, and research skills.
Technical writing is primarily concerned with making industry-specific ideas easier for the target audience to understand. The texts you write will generally be user guides, technical documents, and manuals.

Becoming a technical writer is one of the top profitable online businesses on the list as the demand for these professionals is growing faster than usual. Many companies need a technical writer for documentation, internal communication and marketing.

Once chosen, all that remains is to create a website. With Hostinger, your online business will be in good hands. Good luck!

Get a modern and fully responsive website without writing a single line of code.


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