Since the start of the pandemic, e-commerce sales have been much higher than they were in the past. However, as you may have heard many times, the pandemic didn’t create this trend — it merely accelerated it as it was already in motion. In other words, there is little reason to think that e-commerce won’t be an enormous source of revenue for years to come.
That’s great news for aspiring entrepreneurs and freelancers, as e-commerce businesses are often easy to start and can have very little overhead. Of course, your costs can be higher if you sell physical products, but with some of the following ideas, even physical goods may not require much capital.
More importantly, all these ideas are businesses you can start from home tomorrow. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll immediately start making thousands of dollars, though. It may take months, or even years, to get to that point. Still, you can start some of these ideas on the side and build them over time. Here are eight e-commerce businesses that could lead to major success.
Online courses are a great business idea because the upfront costs are minimal, yet some of the most popular courses sell for hundreds of dollars. This one is much easier to start if you are already an expert on a topic that is valuable.
If you aren’t already an expert, think about knowledge and skills that will help other entrepreneurs make more money. Once you have built your course, it’s mostly just a matter of promotion and perhaps some periodic updates.
Like online courses, e-books are essentially just another medium for imparting your knowledge and skills. If you have a topic that doesn’t necessitate showing your screen — or you are just better at expressing yourself via text — eBooks are another option.
E-books usually don’t sell for as much as online courses, but you can create several of them and sell them via your online store. In many cases, it’s as simple as creating a PDF. Of course, they should contain valuable information if want people to pay for them.
Printables are another digital product you can sell via your online store. They come in many forms, such as organizers, calendars, greeting cards and budget printables. If you can put a unique spin on any of these products that makes people want to buy them, you might have a viable e-commerce business. You can sell them via your own store or use a marketplace such as Etsy.
Printables are easy to start, and there isn’t much risk. You can also use free tools such as Canva to create them. So even if your first idea (or five) doesn’t sell, you can keep testing until you come up with one that people love.
People are increasingly interested in natural products these days, whether it’s due to climate change or just wanting to reduce the impact on their local communities. While the idea is broad, natural products might include cleaning, beauty, and hygienic products. Think bamboo toothbrushes and soap that does away with plastic packaging. If you can create these products using natural materials, you might be able to sell them online.
If by chance you already have a high-quality camera, you can turn it into a money-making machine. Millions of people are creating content every day, and they need images to bring that content to life. Hence, you can capture interesting shots and sell them to stock photo sites. Other photographers go a different route and build a business taking photos at events, such as weddings.
Flipping products can be a fun and interesting way to make money online, and there are different ways you can go about it. Some people find underpriced items at thrift stores and flea markets and turn around and sell them right away. Others find products like furniture that have “good bones” so they can revamp and resell them for a profit via their store. Get creative and use your skills for this e-commerce idea.
One of the struggles with running an online store is having a place to store physical products, and that’s not to mention the cost of purchasing your own inventory upfront. Dropshipping is one potential solution to these problems that has risen to popularity in recent years.
With dropshipping, instead of holding and selling your own inventory, you purchase it from a third party, such as a wholesaler. You simply act as a middleman and fulfill orders as they come in.
Online coaching is more of a service than a product. However, you can create coaching packages that you sell via your online store or use your less expensive physical products to advertise them.
Of course, with coaching, it’s important to have expertise in your field and build a reputation for yourself. So, you shouldn’t expect to be an overnight success as a coach, but it is something you can start right away. Make sure you ask for testimonials along the way, as word of mouth and social promotion are critically important in this line of business.
More From GOBankingRates