Many of us dream of starting a home-based business — and for good reason. By starting a home-based business of our own, we can take advantage of home office tax deductions, flexible working hours, and more freedom in our personal and professional lives. Plus, we can spend more time at home with our loved ones and avoid a long commute to and from the office.
If you’ve been dreaming of using your professional skills and experiences to build a home-based business that allows you to work and live on your own terms, it’s time to make your dreams a reality. For some tips on turning your career skills and interests into a profitable home-based business, read on!
Explore Home-Based Business Ideas
Unless you already have a home-based business idea in mind, you’ll need to explore your different options and choose a profitable idea that best fits your lifestyle, skills, experience, and passions. Depending on your career skills, interests, and professional background, a few types of home-based businesses include:
- Graphic design.
- Freelance writing and editing.
- Accounting, bookkeeping, and financial planning.
- Cleaning services.
- Dog walking and pet sitting.
- Event planning.
- Personal training.
- Web and app development.
Create a Business Plan
To turn your business idea into a profitable home-based career, you’ll need to kick things off by creating a business plan that walks you through every stage in the process. A well-written plan will help you to get your business off the ground, manage your day-to-day responsibilities, and secure the funding you need to purchase inventory, equipment, supplies, and anything else you’ll need to start your business.
While the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has several templates on its website, a good business plan will typically include an executive summary, company description, marketing strategy, and a description of the products and services you plan to offer. Additionally, it should describe your business structure — whether you choose to operate as a limited liability company (LLC), sole proprietorship, or partnership.
Adapt Your Business Plan During COVID-19
Amid the coronavirus crisis, there are a few other things you’ll need to keep in mind as you get your home-based business up and running. For example, you’ll need to think about how the pandemic could impact your revenue streams and how you conduct business with your customers. As such, it’s important to adapt your business plan to meet the changing needs of your target market — and prepare for several pandemic-related scenarios, such as a year or longer of social distancing.
As you adapt your business plan and start a home-based business during COVID-19, it’s worth considering these innovative ideas for generating revenue:
- Building a website or e-commerce store to meet changing consumer demands.
- Showcasing your products through social media, short video content, and live broadcasts.
- Investing in digital marketing strategies such as search engine optimization (SEO) and regularly posted blog content.
- Offering free delivery on products sold to local customers.
Follow Local Rules and Regulations
When starting a home-based business, you’ll also need to make sure that you’re complying with any local rules and regulations that may be in place. These rules and regulations vary by state and industry, but you’ll typically need to comply with local zoning laws, apply for a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN), and obtain the permits and licenses you’ll need to conduct business out of your home. Depending on where you live, you may also need a home occupation permit.
Run a Successful Home-Based Business
Once you’ve created a plan for your home-based business, complied with local rules and regulations, and adapted your business plan and marketing strategy during COVID-19, it’ll be time to apply for funding, build your workspace, and get your business up and running. Starting a home-based business can be a long and tedious process, but the benefits of working for yourself will be well worth it!