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.
Provide chat support to the nation’s leading food delivery app service to help diners with late deliveries or missing food items via Chat. All you need to do in three simple steps: 1) Receive chat from diner describing an issue they are having with food delivery. 2) Make a 60-second call to the restaurant to determine next steps. 3) Return back to the diner on chat to resolve their issue. Almost every contact will require this process of a back and forth between contact utilities. Must be capable of handling three concurrent chats at once, excel at multi-tasking and use of multiple systems at once, excellent typing skills, and great with the written word.
The process of gathering information and writing a business plan helps the entrepreneur take an objective, critical look at the business idea and its chances for success. A home-based business may be related to an individual's previous occupation, but may also be based upon a hobby or the discovery of a unique business opportunity. In any case, the idea should be evaluated with an eye toward market potential and competition. Once the business is up and running, the business plan sets forth goals and standards for management and serves as an operational tool to measure progress. Although there are many ways to start a home-based business—including "moonlighting" while employed full-time, working part-time for an employer and part-time at home, and just taking the plunge—planning is important to all of them.
But once you’re in your home office—alone, every day—you might start to miss that collegial camaraderie. Since the UPS incident, I’ve reached out more to colleagues via IM and will post cute pics of my new puppy for my colleagues to see on Yammer. And when we’re on deadline, we even (gasp!) talk on the phone. It’s helped tremendously to make the disconnect not feel so severe. It’s a good balance between having peace and quiet when you need it and much-needed interaction with others, too.
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Maybe you're not very good with computers, or don't want to sit behind a desk? Well, here's a side business idea that has more of a physical component to it. If you also like working with others,  then becoming an on-call mover will likely fit the bill. When someone's moving, they always need a helping hand (or three). You can provide that service and make some cash with this side business idea. Whether it's helping someone who's moving apartments or linking up with a local mover who needs an extra set of hands, working as a mover can be a pretty good gig.

Blooms Today hires home-based customer service and sales in all U.S. states, except for the following: Texas, California, and Florida. Average home-based sales reps make $15 per hour, with top performers earning an average of $24 per hour. All training is provided online. From the company: "Our Independent Sales Representatives are very important to our … Read More
Employed techies planning to earn some extra side income can leverage their software and hardware skills by offering home-based computer repair services as a business idea that engages their passion. If this rings a bell, you can start with a modest one-man tech team before envisioning a scaled-up operation as massive as Geek Squad. Remember, you can provide home service locally as a starting point to this business idea, as well as offer remote support through online messaging and video calling services before making your way into a retail setting.
From $0 to $120,000 in monthly sales, Beardbrand.com is as incredible a story as they come. This is a company that lives and breathes the brand they’ve created, selling beard care products, beard grooming kits and other beard related propaganda. The owner of Beardbrand.com says it’s his growth of such a unique, strong brand that’s made him so successful.
Using your skills for profit is a common trend with all of the best side business ideas. If you're an expert at something, there's likely an audience of people online who would be willing to pay to become an expert in your field—just like you. If you want to take your skills and turn them into an online course that teaches others how to get the same results you've achieved in your life, career, or business, start with How to Create an Awesome Online Course on Udemy, where instructor Miguel Hernandez covers how he makes over $90,000/yr teaching online. You'll learn from more than 8 hours of video instruction.
Vitacost is hiring home-based digital (email and chat) customer service agents in Florida. You must have a minimum of one year of customer service experience. You must also live within 80 miles of Boca Raton because you will need to attend two weeks of paid training prior to beginning work from home. From the company: "The Digital Customer Service … Read More

Yet another common problem encountered by home-based business people is frequent distractions that reduce productivity. In fact, distractions are everywhere for people who work from home. When faced with a difficult work task, it sometimes seems far preferable to run the vacuum, clean out a closet, walk the dog, have a snack, take a nap, raid the refrigerator, pull some weeds in the garden, or do any of the myriad other things that need doing around a normal household. In addition, people who work from home lack the motivation that peer pressure can provide in a regular office. They also face spouses and children who demand time and attention, as well as friends and neighbors who call to chat or stop by to ask favors.
ClickWorker is an online platform where you can get paid for writing, translating, researching and collecting data. To get started, create an account, fill out your profile, complete a qualification assessment, then bid on jobs. Payments are made by SEPA bank account transfers, and via PayPal once your account reaches $1.00, and your tax information has been completed. ClickWorker’s clients include Groupon, Tennis Point, Honda, PayPal among others.

If you don’t mind parading yourself around in public places as a side business idea, and enjoy a little attention, then working as a human billboard can pay a surprising amount of dividends. Renting out your beard, for example can earn you as much as $5 a day while having a brand logo tattooed on your shaven head for five years could pay as much as $7,000—though this type of earning opportunity is admittedly rare. This business idea is definitely not for the faint of heart, and is a little extreme for me, but nonetheless it's been done as a side hustle for many people. You can start by holding a placard or wearing a sandwich board. If you think this is a good side business idea, you can go all the way and turn it into a full on small business idea with enough hard work—plus you won't have to deal with all the issues other more complex businesses have to constantly think about (like reducing churn).

If you have something you're skilled at and very passionate about, you can turn that winning combination into offering your services with one-on-one online coaching as a solid side business idea. Just be sure to implement your own opportunity management system so you don't get caught up working with clients that you can't measurably help. Elmira Strange will give you a step-by-step plan for putting your skills and experience to work by developing an online coaching business—even as a side business idea in the time around your full-time job—so be sure to check out her course on Udemy for a jump start on this side business idea.


Use the best keywords. When searching online job boards, don’t use the phrases “work from home” or “work at home” because those are commonly used by scammers. There are about 70 scam jobs for every one legitimate, work-from-home job, so use phrases like “remote job,” “telecommuting job,” and “virtual job” to steer clear of scams and find real, professional opportunities.
Not to mention, reducing or eliminating that grinding daily commute--something 70% of people said would reduce their overall stress levels in the 2017 Super Survey on flexible and remote work. People also think working remotely would reduce interruptions from colleagues (76%), eliminate distractions (76%), and minimize their exposure to office politics (69%). It’s clear that professionals could reap a lot of benefits if they worked from home--but only if they do it well.
Expertise is another matter, but remember that writing can take many forms—from resumes to news articles to marketing materials and even thank-you notes. (You can even write for businesstown.com, although that gig doesn’t pay … yet.) There’s probably some form of writing you’re qualified to do. Plus, if you’re good enough with grammar and punctuation, companies will pay you to be a freelance editor. One friend made good money editing posts on a popular travel site.
We don’t manufacture as much in America as we used to, but the phrase “American made” still means a lot to some people. Artisanal items are also popular, making now a great time to start a furniture-making business. This might not be the easiest idea to start from scratch, but if you already own the equipment you need, you can start producing pieces to sell at fairs and online on sites such as Etsy.

Not to mention, reducing or eliminating that grinding daily commute--something 70% of people said would reduce their overall stress levels in the 2017 Super Survey on flexible and remote work. People also think working remotely would reduce interruptions from colleagues (76%), eliminate distractions (76%), and minimize their exposure to office politics (69%). It’s clear that professionals could reap a lot of benefits if they worked from home--but only if they do it well.
Sseko – Run your own ethical fashion business with Sseko! You'll fall in love with the amazing handcrafted and on-trend products. Sseko Designs uses fashion to create opportunity for women globally. We provide employment and scholarship opportunities to women in Uganda who are working to pursue their dreams and overcome poverty. We do this through a financially self-sustaining model, one that also enables us to create opportunity for women in the U.S. to earn an income: The Sseko Fellows Program. As a Sseko Fellow, you get to share the Sseko story and sell beautiful products of the highest quality. You’ll become an integral part of making dreams come true for women in Uganda while you simultaneously earn an income for yourself! We've got a vibrant community of women ready to welcome and mentor you as you get started… and every step of the way!
Build up a following on your Instagram account and you could quickly be approached by major brands, gear companies, and other relevant businesses that sell products or services related to the type of content you share on Instagram—creating multiple potential side business ideas that'll come to you. If you have the right marketing skills and hundreds of thousands of followers, you can easily charge anywhere between $500 to $5,000 per post (or more)—which makes for a very profitable side business idea. Check out this fashion Instagrammer on ThePennyHoarder, making a significant income from brand sponsorships. Once you get some traction, to cut down on the amount of time you spend uploading images, you can make your entire workflow more efficient by posting photos from your Mac or PC.
Everyone (even kids and retirees) need to have some level of technical know-how to stay competitive and appreciate the marvels of the digital age. Just observe how learning sites like Codecademy, Treehouse, and Udacity continue to grow and you’ll understand the urgency of getting computer training for our generation (thus making it a great business idea to train others if you already have the skills). If you’re a techie, you can cash in on this need by offering lessons and tutorials within your neighborhood or across cyberspace through portals like YouTube or Udemy as a side business idea. You can even set up your own tutorial site with an interface for online payments.
If you’re a fitness buff and have the right combination of charisma and business sense, working as a part-time personal trainer as a side business idea can be both physically and financially rewarding. Once you build up a reputation and client base for yourself, it could easily turn into a full-time endeavor for you. Check out these tips to a successful personal training business by the American Fitness Professionals and this interview with several fitness blog owners who are making a living online, from MonetizePros. Finally, I'd recommend checking out this resource if you want to take this business idea seriously and get started with a business plan for your personal fitness trainer business today.
Used-car salesmen unfortunately have some nasty stereotypes to live down, but you don’t need a tacky blazer or a fast-talking sales pitch to make money buying and reselling cars. People throw away perfectly good (or certainly good enough) cars all the time for all sorts of trivial issues. If you know a little something about servicing a car and can make one shine for a Craigslist ad, you could take advantage of massive opportunities to buy used cars and resell them for major profit.

Yet there are plenty of companies you’ve probably never heard of, too. Appen, which tops the list, develops high-quality training data for machine learning and artificial intelligence; not surprisingly, they’re hiring web search evaluators and a slew of linguists in lesser known languages like Sudanese Arabic and Xhosa. BCD Travel, the Dutch managed travel provider, is hiring remotely for their customer service, business development and travel consultant roles. Three universities—Grand Canyon, Western Governors and Walden—make the list as well. To say there’s an abundance of work from home jobs available out there would be an understatement. For most people, there are more than they could ever imagine.


If you’re a fitness buff and have the right combination of charisma and business sense, working as a part-time personal trainer as a side business idea can be both physically and financially rewarding. Once you build up a reputation and client base for yourself, it could easily turn into a full-time endeavor for you. Check out these tips to a successful personal training business by the American Fitness Professionals and this interview with several fitness blog owners who are making a living online, from MonetizePros. Finally, I'd recommend checking out this resource if you want to take this business idea seriously and get started with a business plan for your personal fitness trainer business today.
For many years, the IRS has followed a very strict interpretation of "principal place of business," which prevented some self-employed persons—such as an accountant who maintained a home office but also spent a great deal of time visiting clients—from claiming the deduction. But in July 1997, responding to the concerns of small business advocates, the U.S. Congress passed a tax bill that redefined an individual's "principal place of business" to include a home office that meets the following two criteria: 1) it is used to conduct the management or administrative activities of a business; and 2) it is the only place in which the small business owner conducts those management or administrative activities. When this change became effective on January 1, 1999, it was expected to enable many home-based business owners who also perform services outside of their homes to claim the home office deduction.
The concept of home-based business, as opposed to the previous terminology of "cottage industry", first appeared in 1978. The phrase was coined by Marion Behr, the originator of a study to find out what businesses women throughout America were carrying on in their homes. The preview edition of Enterprising Women[3] wrote about the search to gather information pertaining to home workers throughout the nation. Numerous magazines[4][5] and organizations helped to disseminate information regarding the study. Ultimately 40,000 letters were received, many indicating the problems the respondents experienced while carrying on businesses from their homes.
This is a perfect business idea for trained accountants who would like to work from home, although it is not necessary to be a Certified Public Accountant in order to become a freelance bookkeeper—it’s just necessary to have the background knowledge that bookkeeping courses at any community college can offer. This kind of freelance work is especially helpful for small businesses that do not need or cannot afford a fulltime bookkeeper, making it possible for you to have full time work through several smaller clients. Median salary: $34,000.
While remote workers can be found in a number of different industries, it’s more prevalent in the tech-sphere. It could be due to the nature of most tech jobs—especially jobs for developers and programmers—that require a strong attention to detail and long hours of focus. Working from home can reduce the amount of distractions these workers face, allowing them to get more done during work hours.
If you have a way with words and know how to make the keyword-friendly, beautifully designed, SEO-optimized landing pages, why not charge other companies for your services and turn it into a money-making side business idea? Even a short landing page is worth a couple hundred bucks in most cases, and so much more if you know how to pitch your prospects well. If you want to get started with your business idea of becoming a landing page specialist or freelance copywriter, check out Len Smith and Sean Kaye's awesome course on Udemy, Copywriting Secrets: How to Write Copy That Sells.
I recently started working in network marketing with a natural hair care line. It has transformed my life, by giving me my confidence back. I was losing my hair and I didn’t know what to do. I’d been to the Dr and told it wasn’t a thyroid issue, but they couldn’t tell me what WAS causing it. My good friend introduced me to these amazing products, that in a matter of months changed my life. My husband is now using the products for his “gaining face” (not receding hairline) issue. Lol.
I am a 36 year old single mom of a 5 year old son I have custody of and 2 daughters who are 13 and 11 that I get most weekends. I live with and care for my disabled mother in a wheelchair, and have since 2011, since I care for her and my son it’s very hard to get a job outside the home. My income is very limited and I have got scammed a lot of times on the WAH jobs that charge you a fee and don’t really work. If anyone can give me info on REAL and legitimate home jobs that do not charge a fee please email me info and help me out. cindy0579@yahoo.com
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AirTreks is a travel agency that offers international and multi-stop tickets for travel. AirTreks provides training, but requires prospective employees to have traveled to five or more countries. AirTreks Travel Agents use Amadeus GDS. Job Search Tip: Work-from-home Travel Agent positions are often listed as “Travel Planner”. Starting pay is $2,000+commission.
Auberge Resorts is hiring work at home reservations agents on the East Coast of the U.S. These are full-time home-based positions. All work at home reservations agents must be willing to work a flexible schedule, to include some nights, weekends. and holidays. From the company: "The reservations sales associate will be responsible for exceptional … Read More
Calling All Teachers – Earn Up to $22/Hr. Teaching English Online – If you’re looking for a side gig with good hourly rates, these companies are actively hiring. All involve teaching English to Chinese children online. Set your own hours, materials provided: HAWO — $18 per 45-min. lesson, $100 sign-on bonus. Education First — $12-$19/hr. VIPKID — $14-$22/hr. Interview Tip — The video interview with each company is key.
Hi , thanks for the tipsI never thought to use a number of those Jobs. I find that the best way for me is to complete surveys. I have been doing this for about a year now for about an hour each day and i’m making about $350-$500 each month, which isn’t bad considering it’s just meant to be some additional income. I find that this site works the best for those of you that are interested paymentforsurveys.blogspot.com
Anyone can sell goods on Amazon, provided you have products to sell (or buy low, then resell). If you’re the type to hit all the local garage sales each weekend, there’s all sorts of valuable things that can be resold online as a side business idea. If you want to step your Amazon selling game up, check out this detailed guide to Amazon and eBay retail arbitrage on Entrepreneur featuring an interview with Julie Becker and several drop-shippers who've grown this home based business idea from side business idea into a lucrative money-maker.
Obviously some of these small business ideas have more earning potential than others, but what they all share in common are relatively low barriers to entry and the flexibility to work at them for a limited amount of time per week. I also tried to focus on side business ideas that have some sort of online component to them, since that's what I love most.
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It’s a common answer when you ask people why they like to work from home. Most will respond that their flexible work environment relieves the amount of stress in their lives and gives them a healthier work-life balance. Today, our offices are constantly on, it isn't the same as it was decades ago, when you left the office and work actually ended. Today, most of us can work at any hour wherever we are located, so it makes sense that the line is starting to blur between work and life. But it stands to reason that working from home can help redefine—or at the very least, rebalance—that line.
Hi. I am a 35 year old woman with extreme social phobia and anxiety. I have been working forever as a retail manager. I have great customer service skills and can type fairly well. I have been on short term disability for almost a year and it is going to be ending. I have no idea what I’m going to do, or how I will be able to pay my bills. I need a way to support myself by working at home without any of the scams or gimmicks. If there is anyone out there that could help me or knows of something, PLEASE let me know.
Tutoring. My friend Jenny tapped into a high-income community and used her teaching background to earn $40/hour helping with homework. The real money came when she bundled three kids together for group homework sessions, charging each family $25/hr. That’s $75 for an hour of work that can be done while your baby naps. Or, while you pay a teenager $10 to watch the baby in another room. This is one of those work at home jobs for moms that can be both financially beneficial and persoanlly rewarding as you help children learn.

User Testing hires people to test out websites. Each assignment pays $10/$15 for 20 minutes of work. To become a tester – submit your email address and apply. Testers must take a sample test before receiving any assignments. This gig is open to the US and International residents alike who can receive payments via PayPal. Each test takes about 15 – 20 minutes.

It sounds too good to be true—getting paid to represent your favorite brands at events across the nation. But, if you have a friendly and outgoing personality (a growing social media following helps too), you can forge a potentially paid relationship as a brand ambassador with companies who want to reach other people within your community with this  side business idea. As a Brand Ambassador, you do anything from demoing the latest technology, to passing out free swag at music festivals, to going on nationwide tours, to pumping people up as a mascot, and more. Depending upon the gig, you can expect to earn anywhere from $18-$100/hr. You can get started as early as this weekend by joining the Brand Ambassador Facebook group for your nearest major city (e.g. join the "Brand Ambassadors of Seattle" group if you live in/near Seattle). Once you've been approved to the group, you'll get access to daily job postings from big brands and agencies with opportunities in your area. All you need to do is submit your resume and headshot to apply. For a step-by-step guide on how to get hired for the best gigs and the highest pay rates, I recommend checking out The Brand Ambassador Blueprint.
Competition to get into top universities is as tough as it has ever been, so nervous parents are willing to pay handsomely for tutoring for their kids. You need an area of expertise—math, and specifically SAT math preparation, is always a favorite—but almost any subject will work. If you know how to market yourself locally, you can take advantage of parental paranoia and make money by tutoring right in your own home, or at a local library or coffee shop. Just make sure to do your homework on your local market in order to set prices and know which areas of expertise are most desired by parents in your area.
Welocalize works with global companies in a variety of specialized industries such as technology, consumer satisfaction, manufacturing, learning and education, legal, travel and hospitality, finance, oil and gas, and life sciences to translate their website and content into local languages. Hourly contractors earn between $23-$43 hourly, depending on their area of specialty, language, and availability.
Your success in working from home might depend on the type of work you do, as discovered in a study by University of Illinois. The study found that telecommuters performed as well as their in-office co-workers. Phil Cicioria, Business & Law Editor at University of Illinois says, “According to the study, telecommuters want to be seen as “good citizens” of the company in order to justify their flexible work arrangements.”
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One way to get started might be to focus on children’s parities, which can be a bit simpler and less stressful to plan than adult get-togethers. Go further into specialization by following kid trends and offering superhero or Frozen parties. Remember that you’ll be competing not just with other party planners but with local restaurants and facilities, so excellent networking skills and a personal touch to your services will be important.

- Work-from-home mothers and fathers share some perks with stay-home moms and dads, in that they have greater freedom to pick up sick kids from school (the joys of parenting!) and generally have an advantage in being able to prioritize family needs, from doctor appointments, to school plays, to everything in between (provided their employer does, indeed, enable this sort of flexibility).
If you don't find what you're looking for there, here's a list of the 45 best places you can learn to code for free. Once you command a knowledge of HTML, Ruby, Python, Javascript, or CSS, you can start a freelance business as a side business idea to build your portfolio while you still hold onto your full-time job. Listen to my podcast interview with Laurence Bradford about her journey to become a freelance web developer, too. And over time, you'll build more relationships, have more experience and eventually take this side business idea over to becoming a full-time source of income.
Great list Whitney! Another great option is Amazon FBA (Fulfillment By Amazon) There are apps (like Profit Bandit) that will allow you to scan the barcodes of clearance items at local stores and know instantly if the item can be sold for a profit on Amazon. The beauty of FBA is you simply ship all of the items at once to Amazon and they handle picking, packing and shipping your items when they sell so you can get back to being a mom 🙂 I know three people that make a legitimate six-figure income doing this from home.
I’m looking for people to join my team with Advocare! It’s a great opportunity to get healthy (especially as the New Year approaches!) and make some additional money! I make a couple hundred dollars extra each month and save on my own orders! I feel so strongly about the program I’m willing to pay people’s start up costs! Email me with “advocare” in the subject line if you’re interested!
Not everything is just a Google search away. Media organizations hire fact checkers to make sure that items in stories are accurate and that sources quoted really exist. Other organizations need people to find statistics and other data for presentations and reports. There are plenty of opportunities online to get started researching at home. Just be prepared to get into some really esoteric topics that will take you way beyond Wikipedia.
Great article, thanks. I’m a Mom of 4, now a hands-on Nanna. Pretty hard to get things done when your kids are small. When my oldest was being bullied at school I was a single Mom and desperately needed money to pay for an alternative private school. So I became an ethical dog breeder. Twenty seven years on I’m still doing it and reckon it beats most other options out there hands down.

Freelancing — I mentioned contracting as a virtual assistant for a multi-VA firm above, but you can also these services – and others – directly to clients. Freelance jobs include things like web design, bookkeeping, social media management, and being a virtual assistant. Even if you don’t think you have marketable skills, all it takes is a conversation with someone about what you know how to do, and you’ve got the potential for a freelance business. Plus, you can always deep-dive into something that interests you (Facebook ads, landing page design, marketing on Pinterest, podcast production, and more) and specialize in that area.
Work at home transferring data from one source to another. Most of these companies do not require past experience, although with few exceptions the pay may not be enough to consider it a stable income. Before you begin applying to any of the companies below (many of which sadly are almost never hiring), you might want to read the post I wrote about data entry jobs from home. It explains what your expectations should be prior to pursuing a career in this industry.
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