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© 2016 Small Business California

Tracey Clayton
Dec 17, 2018

Affordable Businesses You Can Start with Little or no Money


Starting a business is a difficult task on its own. What's more, you need a hefty investment to start a business properly. But what happens when you want to start a business, but you have little or even no money at all? It's simple really, you consider starting an affordable business. Affordable businesses require little to no investment on your part but they can easily become quite profitable with the right idea and the right approach.


In most cases, affordable businesses are home-based companies or freelancing jobs you can do online. However, just because it's affordable to start such a company, it doesn't mean it will be easy to run it. Like any other business, affordable ones require time, effort and dedication, among other things, to succeed. What's more, you'll also need to conduct research and test out your ideas before you decide to proceed. That being said, here are a few affordable businesses you can start with little or no money.




Nowadays, blogging can easily turn from a hobby into a profitable career. Starting a blog requires almost no investment at all. However, you'll have to dedicate yourself to your blog and invest a lot of effort into it. Find a niche you'd want to write and talk about and commit to it. It will take some time to attract your audience and make a name for yourself in the blogging world, but in the end, it's quite well worth it.


You can earn money from your blogging via affiliate marketing, displaying advertisements, membership programs and so on. What's more, you can eventually become an influencer earning income from sponsorships and from endorsing other businesses. You might have to invest a little to promote yourself and perhaps even launch a marketing campaign before you turn your blog into a profitable income.



Another affordable business opportunity you should consider is franchising. From an investment point of view, franchising only requires you to purchase a franchising business. In other words, you buy yourself into a developed business model without having to invest in building your own business from the ground up.


The price of purchasing a franchise varies based on the brand or trademark it belongs to, otherwise known as a franchisor. That's why it's important to understand exactly what franchisee vs franchisor is about. Basically, you're provided with funds, staff, consumers and pretty much everything else when you buy a franchise. All you have to do is run the business efficiently, in order for your franchise to become successful.




Virtual assistant

If you have the skills and the patience to organize other people's chaos, you can easily profit from that. A virtual assistant business requires little investment on your part. Basically, you're providing a service to others, which means that aside from marketing and perhaps a few licenses or permits, you don't need to spend money on staff, office, manufacturing facilities or anything similar.


What you do is assist businesses or their owners with their daily tasks, such as answering phone calls, scheduling meetings, sorting through emails and so on. Many startups and small businesses don't have the funds for in-house staff, so they often outsource mundane task management to virtual assistants. This is a good example of an affordable home-based business that can easily grow into a profitable company.


Freelancing opportunities

Many entrepreneurs decide to opt for freelancing opportunities. Being self-employed isn't so different from running a business only there are far fewer expenses involved. Nowadays, the online world provides countless opportunities for freelance entrepreneurs to capitalize on their skills and build long resumes, as well as establish good reputations for themselves.


From freelance copywriting, editorial services and tutoring to design, development and marketing, everything can be provided to those in need over the Internet. After some time in the freelancing world, you can decide to start your own service-based company. In other words, clients will look for your services specifically instead of you having to bid for jobs over freelancing platforms.



Ecommerce business

Another perk of the Internet is that you start a business online. When compared to a traditional retail store, an ecommerce business requires less funds to start. Instead, you have to think of a product consumers are willing to buy and open up an ecommerce store on your website. In terms of investment, developing and designing a website costs considerably less than building, purchasing or renting and equipping a physical store.

What's more, you don't need any employees, you just need to negotiate a deal for your logistics plan, and your store can run 24/7. However, since the online market is quite crowded and competitive, you'll have to invest a bit more in marketing. Reaching your customers is crucial for ecommerce business success and every investment you make into making that happen will eventually yield a considerable return on investment (ROI).


Starting a business doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg. There are countless affordable business opportunities you can explore when you lack the resources to start a business regularly. The important thing is to choose something you're familiar with and something that will help you have a profitable career.

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  • Tracey Clayton
    Nov 5

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  • Marie Nieves
    Oct 22

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  • Tracey Clayton
    Oct 22

    One of the hardest tasks business owners face is keeping up with larger competitors. Instead of sweating over what large corporations do and how it’s going to affect your business, try thinking about your advantages. Your business is an important part of the local community which also makes it more personal and allows it to offer a more personal experience. But is there something you can do to connect with the local community at a higher level? Listed below are some of the best ways to get involved. Volunteer regularly No matter how busy you and your staff members are, finding time to volunteer for a local charity is something you simply have to do. Not only that it’s a great way to provide help to those in need but it also gets you positive brand exposure, which is exactly what you’re after. Moreover, volunteering can help you connect with individuals and other organizations in the community. If you decide to get your whole team involved, volunteering can also serve as a great team-building exercise. Make it a habit of browsing the web for local charities and organizations that could use your help. Sponsor local events Sponsoring an event is a perfect approach for businesses looking to get involved in the local community. The key is to connect with a local event that people can associate positively with your brand and add depth to it. Luckily, most cities, even small ones, usually have festivals and other types of events that people get excited about. Even if you don’t give a speech at the event, just having the host mention your business and finding the right spots to showcase your logo and signage can do wonders for your business. Instead of spending money on sponsoring, think of other ways how you can contribute to the event, be it a product, service or venue. Help preserve the environment Individuals and organizations across the world are looking for new ways how they can help preserve the environment and your business shouldn’t be an exception. Going green can even reduce your expenses while allowing you to contribute to saving the planet. You can start by switching to LED bulbs and starting to recycle. In case you’re based in a popular tourist location, you can help deal with waste and litter to attract more visitors. Just take a look at the difference made by Jack Brown Invest Islands in Lombok, Indonesia. Market your business as green and you can be assured the local community will appreciate your efforts. Connect with other business owners Getting involved in the local community is sometimes easier than it seems. There are so many other small businesses in your area and connecting with them can help your business on so many levels. For example, if you and another business owner believe you could use some extra exposure, why not start a co-marketing campaign? You can even join forces and host a local event that’ll attract thousands. You’ll also be happy to hear that meeting other business owners in your area is now easier than ever. For example, just take a look at how to use LinkedIn properly and connecting with other local companies will be a breeze. Become a community board member Depending on the place you’re based in, there might be some relevant community boards you can become a member of. No matter what kind of board we’re talking about, this is a perfect chance to give your brand exposure and meet other business owners and professionals. Not to mention that you’ll be helping the community as well and if you get it right, people will start to notice your business even more. If you’re struggling to find a board you should opt for, think about whether there are any specific councils for small businesses or those operating in a certain part of the city you’re based in. Final thoughts Opt for any of these five ways and there should be nothing stopping your business from becoming a valuable and relevant part of the local community. Just bear in mind that connecting with a local community isn’t a substitute for offering quality products or services and treating your customers with politeness.