3 Businesses Anyone Could Start for $0

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Having your own business can have many challenges, but if you are doing something you truly believe in, and you are passionate about it, you will be able to get past the obstacles. Whether you want to start a side project or are looking to go full time, my hope is that this list can guide you along your journey. Businesses are built on money and skills. To start off, if you don’t have money, use the skills you have to startup.

Below, Ben Jones has highlighted 3 businesses anyone can start for $0.

1. Consulting/Tutoring

If there is something you are really good at, and if the thing you’re good at is something that other people want to be good at than you have a market to sell your skills. The great part about teaching a skill or offering advice is that it doesn’t take any money to start.  Below are some simple steps on how you can get started.

Firstly: Figure out what skill or skills you are able to teach, once you have decided you’ll need to find your first set of customers and bring in some revenue.

Secondly: Find your first customers in friends or family, strong business connections and their referrals. They’ll know your skills already so marketing doesn’t cost anything but your time and persistence. Contact schools or small businesses as well to see if you are able to market your services there, or offer friends a percentage to act as salespeople.

Lastly: Once you start making some revenue reinvest that money into things that will help to grow your business. If you want to grow big – start investing in a website, marketing materials, promo videos, online courses and the like, if it’s just a side hustle – business cards, or some flyers will probably do.

Caution: Beware – many people are trying to be consultants or tutors. It’s a crowded market so personal referrals really do matter. Make sure you provide great service and don’t rely too much on external marketing but instead use direct marketing and referrals to begin to build your reputation. Know that when starting out business may be slow, but you have to keep at it, otherwise, you won’t catch on in the market.

2. Baking, Making or Creating!

If you are good at cooking or baking, or if you know how to make a certain product than you might be able to get started without capital by selling your products via a pre-sale, or by getting paid in advance for your products.

Firstly: What are you able to make? Is there something you have made before that you are well known for? Is it something you could easily sell at cost to build up a reputation? Once you find your product move to step 2.

Secondly: If you make the item yourself, chances are selling to friends and family would be a good place to start. For baking, local bake sales might be a good place to show off your products at almost no cost to you, and you can often sell items on consignment or hustle your way to a free space to sell at a local market (especially if you are a young entrepreneur).

Lastly: As you grow you’ll have some capital to invest in products and marketing, helping you to sell to more people (like impulse buyers) and invest in reaching wider audiences.

Caution: Beware of anyone trying to sell you a formula to build this type of business. The successful ones tend to grow organically with genuine customers, liking good products, don’t fake it!

PS: Take a look at business models like dropshipping.

3. Brokering

People always need someone to help them navigate confusing or complex systems, if you have the skills you can charge a fee for your expertise.

Firstly: Find out what you can broker. Now how to get rid of stuff online? Can you negotiate really well? Do you know how to maximize frequent flyer mile value?  People will happily give you a fee if you can make their lives easier. Plus for them, even with your fee, they will be saving money, time, effort or all of the above.

Secondly: Start out by offering a very small fee or even no fee to build a clientele. Find your first clients by looking for friends or family who need help, or looking online for people asking for help with a certain task. Then explain what you do and what you’ll offer. From there (assuming you do a good job) ask for referrals and build out your network of contacts.

Lastly: As you grow you might be able to make bigger margins by purchasing things and reselling instead of just taking a commission, you will also want to invest in marketing and technology to help your growth. How far you go all depends on how large you want to scale the enterprise.

PS: Some things you can start brokering right away – others might require a long and complicated licensing process, research this first.

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