What does it take to start an online business? In most cases, you will only need a computer and internet connection.
Think about it! For ecommerce, it doesn’t matter where you live or what your native language is. You can work all day long or for just a couple of hours. Experience is desirable, but you don’t have to be in the board of directors of a multinational corporation. And what’s more important, you can start online business with no money!
Today there are lots of free tools for different types of ecommerce business as well as cheap solutions that even a regular person can afford. Although you might still have to invest some budget, it’s a far cry from opening a brick-and-mortar store or an insurance agency.
Here are three popular ecommerce business ideas you might be interested in.
Let’s assume you want to start an online shop. Ok, you can build a web store on WordPress – a free and easy content management system. You can promote the store on social media and send goods to any city around the world. Sounds profitable, but things will quickly get complicated.
One of the biggest problems you’ll face is the inventory issue. You’ll have to buy products beforehand and store them in a warehouse or at home before selling them to customers. In this model, you never know whether you’ve got enough goods or more than you can handle. Eventually you’ll end up unable to sell the leftovers. Not the best model if you want to start online business with no money.
Dropshipping offers a different approach. Whenever a customer visits your online store, he or she can get the full information on any product there and buy it. But you don’t have it in stock! Instead, you order the given product from your supplier, and the latter sends it directly to the client.
The profit comes from the difference between the supplier’s prices and your own. The most important benefit of this scheme is the fact that you don’t have to risk your investments. You don’t buy goods until you get an actual order from a customer.
If finding suppliers seems difficult, you can dropship products from AliExpress, eBay, Amazon, Etsy or another retail platform. Many manufacturers there are happy to work with dropshipping stores since it helps them attract more clients. And it doesn’t really matter that someone sells their goods for a higher price as long as they get their own share of profit.
- Requires little investment to start
- No need to pay for storage
- No risk of being unable to sell inventory
- The market is very competitive
- Wrong niche may result in failure no matter what you do
There’s nothing better than the opportunity to express your thoughts and feelings, share your ideas and experience, or tell people about your passion. Except for the opportunity to do it for money!
Blogging isn’t just a hobby or entertainment. It’s become a cultural phenomenon of great scale. People read bloggers instead of newscast; they watch bloggers instead of TV shows and learn from them instead of reading books. So creating a blog can be a good way to start online business with no money.
Today anyone can start a blog or a YouTube channel for free. If you’re not Ok with free blogging sites, you can buy hosting and create your own page which will not cost you a lot of money. Other investments depend on whether your write or post videos.
The most important thing about blogging is that you have to post original content. Nobody wants to read or watch copies. Instead you should offer something new and highly demanded. It can be movie or video game reviews, art tutoring, popular science articles, etc. In fact, anything will do as long as you offer people something they want or do it better (funnier, clearer) than other bloggers.
So how do you make money on blogging?
- Pay-per-click advertising. Every time a visitor clicks on a banner on your blog, you get a few scents. The advertising should be related to the theme of your blog, of course.
- Affiliate marketing. This method is similar to pay-per-click, except that you get paid not for clicks but for purchases. If somebody buys a product from an online shop after coming there via your affiliate link (placed on a blog), you get a reward.
- In some cases, you can be offered money for advertising a certain product or brand.
- Yes, some bloggers get most of their money directly from their audience.
- Almost no investment needed
- Can combine passion with money source
- No profit until you get a large audience
- Posts will take longer than you may think
- Finding an original niche is hard
Selling information products
You typically need physical goods to make money on commerce. But in order to start online business with no money, you can sell information products, i.e. any kind of text broadly defined.
This notion can include the following products:
- It doesn’t have to be fiction. People are willing to buy guides, instructions and other stuff as well.
- Audio: interviews, courses.
- Video: webinars, tutorials.
The list goes on. All these products are information, so people actually buy access to it, or a copy. The latter means that you can sell as many copies as possible, so the margin can become very impressive. Furthermore, once the initial work is finished, the income from this source becomes passive.
On the other hand, a business built around information products requires a lot of time and efforts focused on creating unique content and promoting it on different platforms.
- Can become the source of passive income
- Can bring profit pretty quickly
- Requires talent, knowledge and efforts
- May require initial investment
What to choose
When it comes to choosing between these and other options, it is very important to follow your passion. It may sound naïve, but look at it from another angle. While trying to start online business with no money, you will probably have to keep your regular job. So doing something you enjoy is much easier. Besides, true passion has high chances of attracting audience.