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20 lucrative businesses to start without investment [+1 golden tip]

If you dream of starting out your own business but have no money to do so, don’t worry! In this post, we chose 20 lucrative businesses that need no investment - and one must-read tip at the end.

Ana Codeglia

08/07/2017 | By Ana Codeglia

What will we see in this post

More and more people have been looking for alternative jobs to reach some important goal: making more money, having more time with their family, becoming their own boss, working from home, among many others. The good news is that there are many different lucrative business options to start out. However, not all people can make big investments to accomplish their goal, can they?

If you are one of these people and have no money to start out your own business from scratch, keep calm. In this text, we’ll show you business ideas that can be very profitable without the need for saving tons of money before you even take your first steps.

Check out the options we’ve selected and our advice for you to succeed in the journey you choose, according to your profile, goals, and skills. Remember, we’ll show you how to take the first steps, and if you put effort into it, you can keep on growing. And keep on reading because at the end of the text we’ll let you in on a must-read golden tip!

The 10 best lucrative business to start out with no money

1. Purchase and sale of used clothes

Selling used clothes is probably one of the most common lucrative business and one of the easiest to start, especially for people who want a way of getting extra cash without a big initial investment.

Besides, it is a good option for those who wish to contribute to a consumer culture that is better for the environment.

How does it work?

Basically, the person who dedicates to this line of work buy used clothes – but well-maintained ones of good quality – to sell them to other people for a higher price than the one she has paid (at the same time a price that is worth to the buyer.)

The pieces can be sold in different ways: one option is having a small store, if you have the space in your home or somewhere else. However, if this is not your case, you can also do house calls, starting with your friends, family members, and co-workers, for example.

Another interesting option is online sales, on websites dedicated to this kind of market, such as eBay and SnobSwap.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should have the following characteristics:

  • A liking for fashion and knowledge about current trends, so you can choose the best pieces for your buyer persona;
  • Skill for sales, such as: knowing how to deal, hold promotions, and promote your products;
  • Outgoing personality: if you don’t like talking to people all this much, maybe you’re not cut out for this job.

How to start?

To start, you need to find people who will sell you the clothes. To do so, you can adopt these strategies:

  • Create flyers advertising products to buy;
  • Look for items on specialized websites, such as the ones we’ve mentioned above;
  • Talk to people you know and tell them about your business;
  • Talk about these needs on social media and mobile apps.

In some cases, you can even make a deal with the persona and pay her her share after you make the sale. Then, you won’t need to invest any money to get started.

The next step is to promote your products the way you see fit, like on social media or specialized websites. If you want useful advice, we recommend our text on how to sell on Instagram.

Bit by bit, you’ll start to get a loyal audience and it will be easier to find customers who are interested in your pieces.

2. Booking rooms

This is one of the simplest lucrative businesses and one that requires little previous knowledge. However, not everyone can work with this because, obviously, you need to have a free room in your house to be able to rent. If this is your case, it can be a good option for you!

How does it work?

If you have a free room in your house or apartment, you can rent it to students, foreigners who are in an exchange program, or if you live near a touristic place, you can also host travelers.

To promote the room, it’s possible to use social media, for example, or specialized websites, such as Airbnb, Roomlala, and Uniplaces (in Europe.)

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work you should have the following characteristics:

  • Ability to deal with people from different cultures;
  • Knowledge of your city to provide your guests with useful recommendation;
  • Domestic skills – if you want to offer services such as cleaning or breakfast and you don’t want to hire other people to do it.

How to start?

To start, you need to be sure the room you’re putting up for booking is in appropriate shape to receive your future clients. Some topics you need to consider are:

  • Quality of the bed and other pieces of furniture in the room;
  • Lights, power sockets, and electronic devices, such as TV and phone in good condition;
  • Cleanliness of items such as sheets, curtains, and towels.

Then, you need to start promoting your room. Always pay attention to your safety. Come up with criteria to approve or disapprove online requests from people who wish to book your room.

3. Pet Sitting

Pet sitters have become increasingly more popular, since people are spending lots of time traveling, including family trips. So, there’s great search for skilled professionals able to look after their pets while their owners aren’t home.

This is one of the most popular profitable businesses in the last few years, and it has great potential.

How does it work?

Pet sitters are responsible for the pets while their owners aren’t home. Some of the most common activities are: feeding and providing water to the animals, walking, playing, giving medicine, and bathing them.

The idea is that the pet receives as good care as their owners would provide, instead of being lonely or in cages. You can do this job at your own place or at the customer’s house.

Currently, there are websites where people can register to be a dog sitter, such as Holidog and DogBuddy (in Europe).

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this job, you should have the following:

  • A love for pets;
  • Experience in taking care of animals;
  • Good physical shape.

How to start?

To start, you need to promote your work. You can do this on social media, flyers, blogs, face-to-face, specialized websites, etc. Be creative!

4. Wedding planner

Planning a wedding is no easy task. Couples who decide for a wedding need to pay attention to different details and must be in touch with different suppliers, such as photographers, decorators, stylists, chefs, patisserie, barmen, musicians, and much more.

That’s why more and more people decide to hire a wedding planner, who takes care of all stages of the event and ensures this day is just like the couple has always dreamt of, without the need for them to stress out about this process.

How does it work?

Wedding planners need to meet with the couple to understand their needs, the kind of wedding they want, and how much money they’re willing to spend on it. From then, they decide how the ceremony will go, what the party will be like, considering the programming and the professionals to be hired.

Besides organizing the entire event, wedding planners need to get in touch with suppliers, check contracts, follow the couple to technical visits, among others.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this job, you should have:

  • Great organizational skills and knowledge in finance management;
  • Good investigative skill;
  • An out-of-the-box mindset for problem-solving.  

How to start?

To get started, you need some kind of experience. There are several events, workshops, and meetings that you can attend in order to be introduced to people that work in this universe and learn more about the job of a wedding planner.

Besides, taking part in online forums and visiting websites and blogs about the topic is an excellent idea for those who want to be more knowledgeable about the topic.

5. In-home personal chef

If there’s something everybody wants nowadays is a combination of quality and practicality. Many people don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen cooking fancy dishes neither do they want to eat less sophisticated options, especially when they invite their friends, family or a date over to their houses.

So, one of the most interesting lucrative business nowadays is the in-home personal chef. If you are skilled in the kitchen, a good choice is offering your personal chef services for house events.

How does it work?

The personal chef is responsible for coming up with a menu, buying the ingredients for the dish chosen by the client, go to her house, prepare and serve the meal, besides cleaning up the kitchen after the job.

They are professionals usually sought after for different occasions, such as a gathering with friends, romantic dinners, family reunion, and work meetings

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this job, you should have the following:

  • Deep knowledge about gastronomy;
  • Good organizational skills and responsibility.

How to start?

If you don’t know much about food, we recommend you take a good course. If you are already extremely talented, you can start by offering your services for people you already know.

If you feel comfortable to start working, you can register on websites where people look for in-house chefs, such as Hire a Chef and Take a Chef (in Europe).

6. Children’s Party Entertainer

This is one of the best lucrative business for people who want to have an extra job on the weekends. If you’re a fun person and you like kids, this can be a great business opportunity for you.

How does it work?

The main objective of children’s party entertainers is to entertain the kids at birthday parties and other kinds of celebrations, such as family reunions and Bar and Bat Mitzvahs.

To do so, they can suggest different activities, such as telling stories, do magic tricks, dress up as a clown, do stand up comedy, propose different games, and sing songs.

You can render this service at your client’s house, or in parks, schools, beauty parlors, and restaurants.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should:

  • Be creative, fun, caring, and loving;
  • Know about games, magic, stories, motivation songs, and any other material you decide to use.

How to start?

To start in this business, you need to gain experience. One choice is to start out by working for free for people you know, such as your family and friends. Another good option is to work for a bigger and more experienced company before starting your own business.

After you have the necessary experience, you may need to purchase some items, such as costumes and puppets, which will be used for your presentations, or games. Besides, just like in every other situation, you need to promote your work and start bringing in clients.

7. Personal financial advisor

The personal financial advisor is one of the few lucrative business with low competition in the market, and that’s why it could be a great opportunity for people who have an eye for business and math.

How does it work?

The advisors work so that the savings of their client is well-invested, having high-profitability margins. Besides, investment managers can help their clients pay lower taxes and recommend the best products related to banks and investments impartially.

They give advice so the clients take better decisions concerning the use of their money and help them reach their goals by providing a personalized and specialized planning.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should:

  • Be knowledgeable about finances, investments, and some legal areas, especially with formal education;
  • Be knowledgeable about spreadsheet tools, such as Excel.

How to start?

Before you start working with this, you need to become an expert in the area, with traditional courses or online ones. If you already have the necessary studies, you can start by promoting your service to people you know and use the Internet to reach more potential clients.

8. Writing a blog

Creating a blog has been one of the most promising lucrative business in the past few years, because more and more people have been looking for online information, and this means that the online audience does not stop growing. Besides, online businesses are great for people who want to work from home.

There are many ways to make money from a blog, such as: offering online consultancy, use Google Adsense, promote products as an Affiliate, among other options.

How does it work?

Bloggers are knowledgeable people with great passion for a specific market niche, such as beauty and fashion, cooking, sports, movies, trips, finances, and lots of others. There are countless possibilities for a blogger!

People who write a blog aim to promote useful and interesting information to their readers. Therefore, the content needs to be able to help or entertain everybody who visits the page, becoming something valuable to them.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should:

  • Be creative and investigative;
  • Reading habit and good writing;
  • Basic knowledge of informatics.

How to start?

To start as a blogger, you don’t need any initial investment! If this idea attracts you, we have a special gift for you: our complete guide on how to make money from a blog. We hope you like it!                                              

9. Product Affiliation

Affiliation is one of the most profitable business there is if you want to make sales without having your own product. One of the biggest advantages is that you can work from home and make your own hours, plus, affiliation is scalable. We’ll tell you more nest!

How does it work?

Affiliates are people who promote other people’s products and get commissions every time someone makes a sale thanks to their work. In order to do so, you can use different strategies, especially on the Internet.

Some ways you can use to promote the products are: social media, blog, paid ads, email marketing, among others.  

For example: if you have a blog and you write about healthy eating habits, you can promote an e-book about easy low-calorie recipes on some of your posts. Therefore, you’ll get a commission every time a buyer got to the product through the link you shared.

This kind of business is scalable because, with only one action, such as linking to the e-book from your blog, you can reach thousands of people and keep on making money from it throughout the time.

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should:

How to start?

To start, you need to be a part of an Affiliate Program, which will connect you to the Producer. On Hotmart’s case, for example, you have access to a wide range of digital products from different niches and you can choose the one that fits better with your personality to promote. Click here to understand how it works!

10. Digital Producer

Being a digital Producer is at the top of the list of profitable businesses with the best cost-benefit ratio. This is why with little to no investment, it is possible to have huge profits since this is also a scalable business, just like being an Affiliate.

Plus, another advantage of this model is that it is possible to work with what you really like since  anything you like can become a digital product! If you love cooking, for example, how about writing an ebook with your favorite recipes? If you play the guitar, why not record lessons teaching how to play it and creating an online course?

The possibilities are countless and besides working with what you really like, you get to help other people reach their goals. Meaning that you can really make a difference in someone else’s life. Another plus side is that digital products allow your business to get to all four corners of the world, which increases the possibility of success and allows you to get even further.

How does it work?

Digital products are those in digital format, distributed online. There are different kinds of digital products but the most common ones are online courses and e-books.

In the case of online courses, for example, the main responsibility of these professionals are:

What skills do you need?

To succeed in this line of work, you should:

  • Be passionate or knowledgeable about something that might interest other people.
  • Be creative, organized, and responsible;
  • Have basic knowledge on informatics.

How to start?

To start, make a list of everything you love doing and more than that, know how to do well. Think of everything you know and how it could help other people. Would it be possible to create an online course or write an ebook with your skills? Probably the answer will be “yes”!

After you decide the best option for you, it comes the time to start planning your course or ebook and then start working on your content. Only then can you actually start creating and promoting your product.

10 extra ideas of lucrative businesses that need no investment

  • Personal organizer;
  • Baby sitter;
  • Washing and ironing clothes;
  • Purchase of personal items;
  • Cleaning houses;
  • Mentorship;
  • Freelance writing;
  • Revision of texts;
  • Mary Kay or Avon consultant
  • Starting a YouTube channel.

Some important advice

No matter which lucrative business you choose, you will always need to take 5 important things into consideration:

Do market research

After you decide your market, the first step you need to take is carrying out research. Find out everything you can about the topic: how much people charge for it, who is your competition is, what is already being done, and where you can innovate, for example. This will allow you to better organize and plan your business.

Define your persona

Another important topic is defining a persona. What kind of people will buy your products or services? Will they be men or women? How old? What are their interests and characteristics? This will allow you to direct all your strategies to a specific, customized persona, increasing your possibilities of success.

Decide your promotion strategies

How will you promote your products or services? Will you use social media? Will you use flyers? What strategies will you use to call your persona’s attention? You need to plan everything with a lot of detail because your success will depend on this. To help you get inspired here is our post with 5 tips to promote digital products.

Have financial control of your business

A common mistake among people who decide to start a business is forgetting to have a financial control of their business. This can lead to many problems, both financial and in the work structure. So, be sure to periodically control all your expenses and profits by using a spreadsheet or an online app of your preference.

Love what you do

This is our most important tip. Every profitable business we’ve selected are excellent options, however, they’ll only work if you love what you do. Be sure to choose something you’re passionate about because it is the best way to ensure will succeed!