The Best Small Business Ideas for Women and How to Start

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SMALL BUSINESS IDEAS FOR WOMENWomen have proven time and time again that they have the strength and resilience to break through barriers and compete in industries that were once male-dominated.

The idea that men are the breadwinners while women are the homemakers has been shattered by the rise in women entrepreneurship.

However, while some women are thriving in the sea of business, there are others, sitting on the shore and wanting so badly to take a swim.

But…. how can you be sure you won’t drown?

The hardest part of starting your own business is actually starting. I’ve curated these simple business ideas that you can start today to make money from home.

A home business gives you flexibility and freedom to work at times that are convenient for you and your family while allowing you to profit from your passion. If you find you aren’t passionate about any of these ideas, then choose the one you think will be the easiest to start given your situation, location, and connections. You may find that you’ll grow to absolutely love it once you delve in.

If not… well at least you made some money along the way.


Blogging 

I wholeheartedly suggest blogging for any woman who wants to get her feet wet with a small business. The journey to growing your blog is rewarding and you’ll find yourself meeting a whole community of other women doing the same thing.

These are people who you can not only learn from but build friendships with as well.

There is no blogger that started out knowing everything.

Most bloggers learn along the way, from reading other blogs, trial and error experiments, getting involved in communities (both online and off), and even from their readers.

The best thing about starting a blog is that it’s your platform that you can grow into many other opportunities. As your readership grows, new opportunities will arise from people who find they are willing to pay for your skills.

If you don’t know where to start, some great women who meta-blog (blog about blogging) are:

mariah coz

Mariah Coz of Femtrepreneur

She’s one of my favorites. She offers a 1k course that helps bloggers get their first 1,000 subscribers in 60 days or less that’s received great reviews. She also teaches how you can leverage that to create signature courses, as well as use webinars to generate income.

She provides helpful tips and strategies on:

  • building a profitable blog
  • growing your email list
  • using webinars to bring in massive amounts of income at one time
  • getting passive income to work for you

Halley Gray of Evolve and Succeed

Meet the queen of making blogging fun. I don’t know if she’s an alcoholic in real life, but she put a fun twist on webinars by hosting Drunk Webinars which was wildly successful.

Her blog is great for learning new + creative marketing strategies that will help to grow your blog.

Maya Elious of MayaElious.com

Maya is a great resource for learning how to cultivate your personal brand. Just by visiting her website, you get a feel of who she is.

The teal color scheme + the Colgate smile let you know she’s definitely a vibrant character whose got the gift of inspiration.

Once you get started, there are other blogs to help you with blow growth, content marketing, metrics, gaining traffic, and SEO, but these ladies will help you to stand out with personality.

Other blogs that I’ve found to be uncomparably helpful:

ProBlogger

Copyblogger

BoostBlogTraffic

Quick Sprout


Personal Shopper

Not to be confused with mystery shopping, a personal shopper is the perfect small business idea if you’ve got fab style.

You’re thinking that only people like the Kardashian clan and movie stars hire personal shoppers, right?

Well let’s look at your everyday, average people who would also hire a personal shopper:

Parents who are too busy to try to find time for shopping.

People who don’t know where to find good deals on clothes.

People who know what they like but have no clue how to put different pieces together to show off their best assets.

Old elderly people who value comfort, but don’t want to sacrifice style.

Businessmen bachelors who are so submerged in work, they have no clue what to buy if it isn’t a suit… yeah, they need you.

What do you naturally have an eye for? Start by taking high quality photos of yourself and of friends/family you’ve styled. Be creative (and simple) with your background and use relevant hashtags on social media to help people find out about you.

The best social media platform to get started on if you want to become a personal shopper is Instagram & Pinterest.

You can also use Polyvore to put together different looks to start with so people can get an idea of your specific sense of fashion.

The great thing about this is you can start locally in your hometown. Setup a shopping trip with some of your friends and convince them to let you pick out their clothes. Take some nice photos of them for their facebook/

Take some nice (aim for professional) photos of them for their Facebook/Instagram and give them a couple of your business cards. When people compliment them on their clothing, they’ll naturally start talking about your amazing business.


Crafts

You’re no Molly the Maid, Mary Sue homemaker, but if you’re naturally artsy + crafty, there are many ways to turn that into a profitable small business online. Don’t believe me? Read this article  about how a $0.30 investment became a $5,00 return in just 4 months using Etsy.

If you’re new to online marketing, Etsy is a marketplace where people can sell their unique crafts for a percentage of the sales.

If you don’t have a ton of money for supplies, here is a list of easy items you can make. These are definitely unique and cheap ideas to draw inspiration from.

If selling online isn’t for you, you can sell jewelry to local boutiques, then larger stores, building a reputation for your brand. Once you’ve established a consumer base, use some of that money (and the connections) you made along the way to open your own local boutique.

You can attend tradeshows to get orders for your jewelry, network with other people in the industry, and start the process of becoming a household name.

Another great idea is partnering up with local photographers and models to put on a charity fashion show.


Freelance Writer 

If blogging sounded great to you (because you love to write), but you don’t think you have the time to manage a blog right now, then you may want to consider becoming a freelancer.

Trying to sell your skills on websites like Odesk and Elance is not a good idea for a sustainable business model (pay is lower than low) but it can get you started with building a portfolio so you can approach larger publications.

Magazines (both online and off), blogs, and businesses are always hiring freelance writers. With the constant flow of information, they need to keep up so they hire help.

You should definitely still have at least one social media profile + a website for people who love your work to easily find you. It should have all the relevant information to reach you, an explanation of what you do, and places your work has been featured.


YouTube

If you’re a mom, you should definitely consider making a children’s YouTube channel. According to the Guardian, 4 out of 5 of the top YouTube channels are for kids.

My son spends a large amount of time watching a kid his age named Ryan on Youtube. All Ryan does is play with his different toys and visit local amusement parks. He has over 1 million subscribers and that check you see can all but guarantee he’s getting paid AND getting free stuff all the time.

ryans toy review

If you don’t have kids or would rather not pimp them out on YouTube, you can always start a YouTube channel based on something you love doing or talking about.

To start getting paid, you only need about 1,000 subscribers.

The best way to turn YouTube into a small business is to make sure you have a focused theme about something people are interested in. Putting out consistent, well-edited videos will have you racking up subscribers in no time.

Another important factor is the thumbnails that you use. Xay Li has a YouTube show with over 2,000 subscribers.

She’s given up the goods on how to make custom thumbnails to attract viewers.

If you don’t know how to edit your videos, look at other videos for inspiration and ask Professor Google to teach you! There are many free or cheap software you can use to make the process easier until you start making money.

People are aesthetically inclined, so pick a place in your house that serves as an interesting backdrop.


Virtual Assistant

Are you good at multi-tasking? Building a reputation as an efficient virtual assistant is not only a profitable side business, but you only need a few clients at a time to be successful.

While going into an office and working a 9 to 4 is dreary, stressful, and kind of annoying, doing these same tasks at home can be fun and challenging.

As long as you make your deadlines, you can pace yourself and work when you want. Plus, you can learn a ton of new skills along the way.

Once you’ve gotten your first few clients, attracting new business is easy. Everyone, and I do mean everyone either brags or complains about their virtual assistants.

It’s a trendy market, and finding an efficient, creative, and talented VA is something people are proud of. They talk about you on their blogs, they mention you to their entrepreneur friends, and they recommend you to their peers.

Once you’ve gotten your first clients and you do an extraordinary job of it, you’ll probably never have to go looking for another client again. As a matter of fact, you’ll probably be turning people down for lack of time!

If you find that you’re exceptionally fantastic at being a VA, consider starting your own Virtual Assistant hub where you personally hire and train your own assistants to keep up with the overwhelming (but flattering) requests.


Personal Trainer

People either want to lose weight, or get in shape and they’re definitely willing to pay for some help. If you don’t feel comfortable doing one on one coaching sessions, then you can organize a group session locally once a week and charge people to attend.

All you need to invest in is a pair of high-quality sneakers and some attractive fitness clothing.

You don’t even need a gym, you can have these meetups in the park. Start a Facebook page and add members of your community to it. Make sure you take lots of pictures and tag the people in your group to get the word out.

Start with your friends and tell them to bring their friends.

You know what’s great about hosting local group fitness sessions? You don’t have to be super fit. Most people are willing to pay just to get a workout in while having the opportunity to socialize with new people.

Be a good host, and research new, fun, and exciting workouts to share! You can create T-shirts for members of your group or customized wristbands.

However, if you are extremely fit, then a more lucrative route would be to sell fitness dvds or kindle books with comprehensive workouts that people can use to get in shape.


Recipe Book

Depending on your cooking skills, there are two ways to approach this idea to guarantee success.

Either make a recipe book for people who don’t know how to cook or for people who absolutely love to cook.

A step by step book with detailed instructions for cooking delicious meals with seductive meal photos is fantastic for people who have no idea where to start in the kitchen but are passionate about learning.

The reason I suggested a recipe book is because these books practically market themselves on Amazon. Invest (or create your own) eye catching, mouth watering cover and write an irresistible description of your book.

Ask bloggers for reviews, do collaborations with fitness and lifestyle bloggers. The marketing opportunities are endless.

On the other hand, if you’re experienced in the kitchen, write a book for people who simply want unique ideas. Focus on meals that are different and have an attractive presentation.

Create your own personalized recipes and include testimonials on the page from the people who’ve eaten your meal.

Nice excuse to throw a dinner party!

Whoever you’re cooking for, have them describe the taste as detailed as possible and include those descriptions in your book below the recipe.

You can call the section “Described As:” or “This is what it tastes like:”

Again, pictures are the key here. You should also set up a Pinterest account and pin a combination of your meals and delicious meals you found online. By putting the link to your book in the bio, this is a great way to drive traffic to your sales page.

Likewise, adding your Pinterest account to the first page of your book is a good way to drive traffic to your Pinterest.


Click. Click. Click. FLASH

Everybody with a camera is a photographer now, so how will you make any money?

I can tell you how you won’t make money. Taking pictures of everything; people, dogs, sunsets, shoes, your backyard.

Think about places you go often, or places that are easily accessible from your house. Find a theme for your pictures. Ok… I’ve lost you haven’t I?

I can show you better than I could tell you. Check out these instagram accounts:

Lavicvic

Sarah Palmer

Senatori

Wild Idea

Macenzo

Ok, now if your portfolio were a theme on Instagram, what kind of photos would you take?

If you’ve read other articles about making money from home, then you already know you can sell stock pictures. But, that’s not quite a business is it? Nah, more like passive income.

Instead, why don’t you create a coffee table book of your photos and sell that?

Look at this photo book, which is a bestseller on Blurb.com. It’s a book filled with pictures from an apartment building and quotes from the people that live there! Simple + unique = profitable.

Again, if selling online isn’t your speed, you can still market yourself locally.

Identify the most popular local publications (if your city only has newspapers, focus on a general section like Lifestyle).bGet a few of their copies and look at the pictures inside.

Start taking photos that have the same “feel” but from a unique perspective. Once you’ve taken about 20 images, hunt down the editors and find a way to sit down with them.

Present your images and show them how it would work with the publication. Then, let them know the prices.

I think the best way to turn this method into a business is to offer them a monthly fee where every month you give them a new batch and they can choose a certain number of photos from the batch to use exclusively.

This ensures that you’re building a relationship them that may prove valuable later on, and whatever they don’t choose, you can always sell as a stock photo.

Another way to turn photography into a small business is to create and sell calendars with your images.

This list started out as 17 business ideas, but I decided it was better to have a shorter list with complete information to get you started, rather than a long list of ideas and no indication on what to do with it.

Which of these ideas have you had experience with? Let me know in the comments below!

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About the author

Nia

NiaSweetz is the founder of SipBlack- the new digital destination for creative souls to monetize their passion. She's a diversified entrepreneur with a soft spot for innovators who desire to create a lane of their own. With extensive experience in different industries, she's committed to turning your side hustle into a sustainable business.

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