New Business Ideas

What kind of business is right for you? We lay out the top new business ideas for different personalities and situations.

Home based business ideas: Low-cost, low-risk

Some kinds of legitimate businesses are easy to start on a small budget. A consultant, for example, is anyone who knows how to do something better than others, and has the gumption to market himself—as well as $14 for a box of business cards. Similarly, a professional organizer needs a talent for decluttering, a couple of classified ads (or even better, free word-of-mouth), and not much else.

In general, service business ideas offer a nice mix of low buy-in and immediate returns. If you want to test the waters in an area you love, but aren’t sure you want to invest your retirement savings in your new business idea, consider the following:

  • Consulting
  • Professional organizer
  • Petsitter
  • Arts and crafts maker/seller
  • Photographer
  • Tutor
  • Handyman

Read more about home based business ideas here

Internet business ideas: High-tech, high reward

Successful small business startups often start with the existing skills of the founder, turned to a new business idea. If you already have a talent for design, finding bargains, doing research, or connecting people with each other, you may be able to take those skills online to create a new internet business.

Remember, the key to success is not usually having a new idea, but implementing it well, getting customers, and wowing them so that they come back for more and recommend you to others. If you’re willing to learn the basics of html, search engine optimization (SEO), website marketing, and online sales, the following internet business ideas might be for you:

  • Website designer
  • eBay retailer
  • Researcher
  • Recruiting

Check out these resources on running an online business

Small business ideas, big dreams

Sometimes a new business idea can come from a long-held dream to turn a fun hobby into a profitable life’s work. However, most of these small businesses require significant time, energy, and initial investment to begin, so think carefully about your commitment and do your research before you start.

  • Restaurant or caterer
  • Retail storefront
  • Home daycare

Read more about starting a restaurant

Read sample plans for retail and online stores

Read sample plans for day care services and children’s products

New business idea articles

The best business for you is one you love, and are prepared to make a major commitment to. Many small business owners describe starting a new business as more demanding than having a new baby—you have to be prepared to give it your full energy, time, and attention at any time of the day or night. The following articles give you tips on choosing the best business idea for you:

Business Ideas Guide
This guide will help you find a great idea for your interests, and determining if it’s a good idea for a business.

How Do You Know If Your Business Idea Is Any Good?

Here, you’ll learn how to determine if your new idea is actually a good business move.

Business Startup Strategy
Strategy is useless without execution. In this article, you’ll learn why how you execute your business strategy matters—an important topic for startups.

Articles for implementing your new business idea

Do I Need a Business Plan?

Know Your Industry Before You Start Your Business

The Complete Guide to Choosing Your Business Structure

How to Fund Your Business

Sara Prentice-ManelaSara Prentice-Manela

Sara Prentice-Manela is a technical writer with experience creating systems for effectively conveying complex ideas, from face-to-face teaching to help systems, infographics, blogs, and videos.