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20 Best Remote Business Ideas to Start in 2020

Thanks to the internet, anyone can become a remote online business owner. It’s a great job opportunity for those who prefer flexible work hours and full control over their income.

Not to mention, it’s more resistant to sudden outbreaks — like the COVID-19 crisis.

In this article, we’ll provide the best 20 remote business ideas you can start this year.

1. Affiliate Marketing

First on the list is one of the most popular remote business ideas. With affiliate marketing, you can make money from promoting other people’s products or services.

It’s a go-to monetization channel for many online content creators. Tons of companies love to have their products recommended by influencers since word-of-mouth remains an effective marketing strategy.

If you love reviewing items, affiliate marketing is a great idea to start. Many people have built this business by making a website based on a particular niche — from headphones, dog food, to mattresses.

How you get paid depends on the company. Oftentimes you’ll receive a commission every time someone purchases a product or clicks on the affiliate link on your platform.

To get started, join affiliate programs like Hostinger Affiliates, Amazon or ShareASale. You’ll find hundreds of items to review and feature on your website. Be sure to pick products that suit your niche and audience.

hostinger affiliate program homepage

2. Blogging

Today, blogging remains a profitable business. It’s a great way to make money online by sharing your knowledge and interests.

However, you need to have the right strategies in order to make a steady income.

The key to a successful blog is choosing the right niche. Not only should it suit your expertise and passion, but it should also have a sizeable audience. Your blog is guaranteed to have traffic if there are people searching for it in the first place.

Furthermore, the niche should have business potential. A blog’s main income streams rely on various monetization options. This includes affiliate marketing, providing ad space, making sponsored content, selling merchandise, courses and other goods.

Once you have set up a blogging site, start writing articles. Make sure they provide useful content for your audience. Also, learn some digital marketing tactics to optimize your blog and drive more traffic.

If you need help, expert bloggers like Sue Dunlevie have courses you can use to grow your website. Or, follow the tips from this article as a guide.

successful blogging homepage

3. Content Creator on Patreon

Want to be an online content creator? Consider joining Patreon. It’s a crowdfunding platform that many have used to get financial support from people who like your work.

patreon homepage

With Patreon, you can offer fans several membership options at different price points to choose from. In exchange for earning a monthly income, you will provide exclusive content for your fans — from behind-the-scenes footage to online courses.

Many creators have resorted to Patreon to make a sustainable living, like Humans of New York and Markus Magnusson. Not to mention, they use it to build a fanbase and connect it.

To use the platform, sign up for a creator plan. Patreon will cut some fees when you start making a profit. In return, you will get features like coaching and analytics to help you run your business.

4. Selling Artisanal Goods Online

Have a knack for making handmade products? Try selling them.

People are usually more willing to pay if you have one-of-a-kind products. Thus, you can set a higher price for your goods than the average market.

To maximize costs and profits, set up shop at home and buy materials in bulk. Additionally, make sure to have the right target audience in mind when designing your product.

Need some ideas on how to market your goods? Look for small craft businesses online for inspiration —  like Bario Neal. This store, in particular, thrives by catering to sustainability enthusiasts.

Nowadays, sites like Etsy, eBay, and even Instagram can help launch any small business in no time. However, if you want full control over your operations, consider starting your own online store. This way, you’ll have authority over your brand and won’t get any third-party charges.

If you’ve never run a business before, look for online courses in platforms like Udemy to help you.

5. Flipping Items on eBay

With thrifting becoming a trend, now is a good time to start flipping used items and selling them. Not to mention, there are always people looking for a great bargain.

This business requires low startup costs. To get started, you can go to online flea markets or auction sites to find good deals on old items. This could be anything from furniture, clothing, to toys.

ebay homepageThough there are thousands of ecommerce sites to choose from, eBay remains the go-to marketplace for used items. Take advantage of the platform’s popularity if you want to make money quickly.

You can also use their auction model if you have a rare item — like a vintage record player or an old video game console. These can make up to hundreds of dollars if you attract a crowd of collectors.

If you have made a recurring revenue stream, try making extra income by creating an online course to share your knowledge. Flea Market Flipper is a good example of a successful flipping business that does this.

6. Amazon FBA

If you want to become an Amazon seller, enroll in Fulfillment by Amazon. It’s a program where you can have the ecommerce giant manage your inventory, shipping, and customer service.

It’s a great solution for new business owners who want an easy process in setting up their operations.

Nonetheless, note that you will have to pay for fulfillment and storage fees to join FBA. However, the total costs can be more affordable compared to handling these aspects yourself in the long-run.

7. Dropshipping Business

Dropshipping is one of the best remote business ideas if you want to make money online from home. Unlike a typical online store, you can run an ecommerce site without the fuss of making products or managing stocks.

Instead, you will partner with wholesalers to have their products labeled under your brand. When someone makes a purchase, you will inform the company to ship their order to the customer.

With that, dropshipping is an affordable online business to start. To set up shop, you only need a website, a laptop, and access to wholesale supplier directories like SaleHoo and AliDropship.

ali dropship business idea from home

Since most dropshipping stores sell similar products, make sure to set your brand apart from the competition. Businesses do this by narrowing their niche. For instance, Mooshe Socks sticks to only selling cute socks.

8. YouTuber

With YouTube being one of the most-watched platforms on the internet, becoming a video creator can be highly profitable if done right.

With over two billion users, there are many niche markets you can tap into — as long as it has an audience and business potential. From vlogs, video game streaming, to music covers — the choice is endless.

How much revenue you get will depend on your monetization channels. Most YouTubers make money through affiliate marketing, sponsorships, merchandise, and Google AdSense. Some also offer speaking engagements and online courses, like Jay Shetty.

To start your YouTube career, you will need to learn some editing skills and buy good video-making equipment.

Other than that, focus on building your subscriber base. Companies usually look to partner with influencers with a large and loyal following.

9. Podcaster

Podcasting is on the rise and it’s one of the most promising remote business ideas on this list. The US alone garners over 140 million podcast listeners, and more businesses are partnering with podcasters to advertise their products.

Like other content creating gigs, picking the right niche is important. If you go with a popular topic, be sure to make your podcast stand out among the competition.

Or, choose something specific and timely. At times like these, you can make a program all about social distancing or staying safe from the COVID-19 virus.

Podcasters make money through affiliate marketing and sponsored content. However, those who have a large listener count can join podcast advertising networks like Midroll.

If you want to start podcasting, invest in an excellent audio equipment and editing program, like Adobe Audition.

There are two ways you can publish your podcast — by joining a podcast hosting platform or creating your own website. The latter choice would present you with more control over your brand and monetization.

Once your podcast episodes are ready, publish them and add them to Spotify and Apple.

10. Online Coaching

Have special expertise to share? Start a coaching business. As an online coach, you can find clients from around the world.

Some popular topics to cover are nutrition, self-development, spirituality, dating, business, and more. To set your services apart, consider choosing a specialization in the subject of your choice.

For instance, Kate Bagoy sticks to providing business coaching programs for freelancers and consultants.

kate bagoy online business consultationTo provide your services, set up private video calls or send video courses to your customers.

Additionally, consider making a free ebook or starting an email subscription service so that potential clients can get ideas on how your lessons can help them.

11. Web Development

Web developers are an in-demand workforce that many companies need today. Tons of businesses and entrepreneurs hire them to get their online presence up and running.

Compared to other ideas on the list, this business has a steeper learning curve. You will need to be proficient in various programming languages — from JavaScript to Python. Not to mention, you have to understand website maintenance and search engine optimization strategies.

Platforms like Codecademy and Treehouse can help you get started. There are also websites that provide coding lessons for free.

Once you have enough skills, create a portfolio for your web development projects. A website like Matt Farley’s is a great one to check out if you need some inspiration.

12. App Development

Apps are still in high-demand, so no wonder its development can be a great remote business idea.

Think of unique apps like Flush. It’s a toilet finder that lets you know if there are restrooms nearby in case you need them.

Nowadays, having coding skills is not a necessity for app development. Software like AppyPie and AppSheet enable anyone without a technical background to design mobile apps. However, it would help to get familiar with user-friendly mobile experience and interface designs.

To get people downloading your product, make it free on the app market. You can provide in-app premium features and ad spaces to make money.

13. Video Game Development

As the video game industry is growing rapidly, why not make money by creating your own games?

Like app development, there are tons of software that lets you make video games without having programming knowledge — like Unity and GameMaker: Studio.

A great video game should have excellent gameplay and a challenge that gets more difficult with each level. It’d also help to include a compelling story.

You can make simple games like Dots or a more complex one like Clash of Clans.

Today, most game creators generate revenue by making their product free while also providing in-app purchases. You can create an in-game market where players can access premium features to help achieve their goals.

When your game is ready, put them up on platforms like Play Store, App Store, or Steam.

14. Virtual Assistant

A virtual assistant does everything an assistant can do but online. It’s one of the most popular remote business ideas.

In other words, the main job description would be to perform clerical tasks from clients — such as replying to emails, scheduling appointments, automating spreadsheets, and so on.

Nonetheless, many virtual assistants specialize in certain areas and markets. For instance, Miranda Hassen focuses her services on digital marketing for creative entrepreneurs.

With that, there is almost no limit to what a virtual assistant can do for businesses. Some clients might ask you to manage their online store, social media, website, and more. Therefore, if you’re looking for a job with various learning opportunities, this could be the perfect gig for you.

To get started, make an online resume and list it on job marketplaces like Upwork. Having a website can boost your professionalism and make you stand out to potential clients.

Upwork is one of the best freelance platforms today.

15. Graphic Designer

Have a talent in art and design? Consider pursuing a freelance graphic design career.

As tons of companies need help with creating visual branding materials, there is always a need for graphic design services. You will create works from logos, social media posts, infographics, and more.

You don’t need a degree to start this business. However, you should polish your skills first. Try enrolling in an online course or reading graphic design books. Also, invest in a good computer, drawing tablet, and graphic design software like Adobe Creative Cloud.

Since the job market is quite competitive, make sure to have an outstanding visual portfolio. There are many examples you can find online — like this one by Rafael Kfouri.

rafael kfouri graphic design home business ideasTo find freelance design gigs, head to websites like Dribbble and Behance. When you have no clients, consider creating an online store to sell your own original work.

16. Online Teacher (Video Courses)

For those with experience and expertise in a certain subject, becoming an online teacher can bring you a livable income.

There are various topics you can teach — from academic subjects like math to extracurricular lessons like music.

If you want, try tutoring for a standardized test in your country. Many parents are willing to pay good money to have someone help their children prepare for these exams.

Alternatively, you can provide English tutoring if you’re a native speaker. Companies like EF give people from the US and UK the opportunity to teach international students.

Sites like Teachable and Udemy have made it easier to work with students from anywhere in the world. They are great platforms to start if you’re new to online teaching.

Once you have grown your clientele, you can make a website for your courses. This way, you’ll have more flexibility over your teaching methods and monetization.

17. Selling Info-Products

Info-Products are digital materials that provide useful content for customers. The types can range from ebooks, webinars, and membership sites among others. It’s another great remote business idea with low startup costs.

Similar to online coaching, this business idea is recommended for those with special expertise. You can create info-products for various topics — from practicing zen habits to getting a job in investment banking.

If you want to make your product profitable, make sure it caters to a problem many people face.

Additionally, you’ll need a strong landing page that can convert visitors to customers — like Fizzle’s.

fizzle homepage online courses

18. Amazon Kindle Writer

Love writing? Try self-publishing a book on Amazon KDP. It is one of the best remote business ideas for those who enjoy putting their thoughts on paper.

As a self-published author, you can retain rights over your work and list the book’s price however you want. What’s more, uploading your book to Amazon is an easy and straightforward process, so you can start making money online in no time.

However, note that Amazon cuts a portion of your royalties. So be sure to choose the royalty option that suits your needs.

Once your book is released, promote it through online ads and social media. Create a landing page that conveys why your book is worth reading, like this one by Tim Ferriss.

If you want your work to get more exposure, consider joining the KDP Select program. You’ll get access to more promotional tools, but you need to make your book exclusive only at Kindle.

19. Online Ad Manager

As digital ads play a major role in a business’s success, many businesses have begun to tap into them. Nonetheless, not many know how to take advantage of these ads.

This is where you come in. As an online ad manager, you will handle your clients’ advertising needs across different platforms — like Google, Facebook, and Instagram.

In addition to marketing skills, you need to have knowledge of PPC bidding strategies, ad pricing models, and analytics.

You can create a business website for your management services. Feature it on social media accounts, ads, and job boards like Workable to gain clients.

If you have developed a strong reputation, start offering professional consulting and speaking engagements — like Kirk Williams from Zato Marketing.

20. Website and Domain Flipping

If you have business and web development knowledge, consider flipping websites and domains for a living. What you’ll do is search for undervalued websites and domains, purchase them, tweak them, and sell them back.

Many people are more interested in purchasing well-established sites than creating their own. This is because setting up domain authority and backlinks can take time and effort.

What’s more, great domain names are hard to come by. If you purchase one that has business potential, someone could be willing to pay a high price to buy it from you.

To get started, head to marketplaces like Empire Flippers and Flippa to find websites. Make sure the ones you want to purchase are not banned, sketchy or filled with viruses.

flippa homepage for website flipping

During the flipping process, focus on the website’s user experience and design. Also, follow search engine optimization practices. A website with a great search engine rank can sell fast.

How to Choose the Best Small Business for a Beginner

If you’ve never started a business, picking the right idea could be a daunting task. Here are some factors to consider to guide your choice:

  • Expertise. In most cases, you will need to spend time learning new skills to run the business. Consider how much time to invest before you can start your operations.
  • Investment and profitability. Some businesses take longer than others to start making income. Calculate how much startup costs you need to put in and how long until the money starts rolling in.
  • Stability and scalability. Not all businesses can stand the test of time. Make sure to come up with a long-term plan so that your business can grow and survive, especially during times like an outbreak.
  • Your interests. Think whether you’d still be passionate about running the business in the long-run.

How to Build a Website For a Home Business?

To ensure the success of your remote business idea, you need a website. It is an essential tool in building a brand and raising awareness about your company.

By optimizing SEO and using social media marketing, your site will have traffic in no time. And, of course, high traffic means more conversions!

Building a website isn’t hard, nor does it have to be expensive.

Start off by picking out a hosting plan and a domain name. We recommend to start with the Shared Hosting plans – they’re affordable and will accommodate a growing website well. If the need arises, you can upgrade to a more advanced hosting option.

hostinger shared hosting plans for remote business

When it comes to domain names, you should try and keep it simple, memorable and easy to type. Use our domain checker to see if the domain name of your choice is available.

hostinger domain checker

When you take care of the technicalities, start building your site. We highly recommend WordPress as your CMS (Content Management System). It offers thousands of plugins and themes to customize your site. On top of that, there are thousands of amazing tutorials, communities, videos, and forums to help you if you ever run into any trouble.

To start, use the auto-installer located in the hPanel. Once you install WordPress and create an account, you’ll be able to reach its Admin Dashboard.

From there, start customizing the layout of your site, uploading content and engaging with your audience.

Check out our collection of WordPress tutorials to help you with the process.

Conclusion

The internet has made it possible to create your own online business from home. They are great to start if you need extra income during times of crisis, like the COVID-19 outbreak.

To recap, here are some 20 best remote business ideas to start in 2020:

  • Affiliate marketing — earn a commission by promoting products from companies.
  • Blogging — share your knowledge and interests with readers and get paid through affiliate marketing, sponsored content, selling merchandise, and more.
  • Content creator on Patreon — set up a Patreon site for fans to financially support your content.
  • Selling artisanal goods online — start an online store to sell handmade goods.
  • Flipping items on eBay — purchase used items and sell them back on eBay for a profit.
  • Amazon FBA — become an Amazon seller and join the FBA program to have them manage your stock, shipping, and customer service.
  • Dropshipping business — partner with a wholesaler to have their products labeled under your brand and sell them at your eCommerce store.
  • YouTuber — start a career as a video content creator and get paid through Google AdSense, affiliate marketing, and merchandise, and more.
  • Podcaster — create a podcast and make money from sponsorships and advertising networks.
  • Online coaching — create a lesson plan to share your expertise through video conference calls or courses.
  • Web development — learn coding skills and site maintenance to start a career in this high-demand field.
  • App development — if you have no programming experience, use development software to make your profitable app ideas a reality.
  • Video game development — create free-to-play video games and make money by providing in-game purchases for players.
  • Virtual assistant — perform clerical tasks and other duties as assigned by clients.
  • Graphic designer — make visual branding materials for businesses and entrepreneurs.
  • Online teacher — tutor students from anywhere in the world on academic or extracurricular subjects.
  • Selling info-products — create an ebook, membership site, webinars, or other digital products that sell useful content for customers.
  • Amazon Kindle writer — self-publish your own writing with Amazon.
  • Online ad manager — handle clients’ digital ads on Google, Facebook, Instagram, and so on.
  • Website and domain flipping — buy websites, improve them, and sell them to interested businesses.

We hope this article has helped you in deciding which remote business ideas to start in 2020. Best of luck.

The Author

Author

Maisha Rachmat / @maisharachmat

Maisha is a Digital Content Writer at Hostinger. A believer in the power of internet and technology, she aims to help others navigate their way through the world wide web. She spends her free time reading and cooking.

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