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Self Starter: Profitable Low-Cost Business Ideas




Nowadays, many people are looking to start their own businesses and work for themselves. However, if your budget is tight, you may be looking into starting something low-cost but with massive potential. Here are a few ideas for you.

eBay Seller

eBay has evolved into a platform that many use as a storefront for their business. Gone are the days when it was just for secondhand goods; now, you can use it to sell almost anything.

Whether it be a wholesale packaging store, trading cards, or simply selling secondhand furniture or clothing, you get at a great rate. It costs nothing to start an eBay account, and you can earn huge profits. 

Digital Products

If you have a skill or knowledge of a specific niche, you can monetize this by turning it into a book, online course, or tutorial. The best thing about this is that it eliminates the need to print anything physical, and posting it online on a website or in an online store is almost always free.

For example, Amazon has a service where you can send your eBook, which will be posted on their Kindle store. While this may take time to gain traction, once you gain a small audience, you can start growing your name, and your wallet as an author.


With the internet, you can work for almost anyone in almost any field. Freelancing is not only a great way to make money, but all you need is a laptop and an internet connection, and you can start a freelancing company. 

You can freelance as a copywriter, software developer, bookkeeper, and various other jobs. There are also plenty of platforms that you can sign up to that will get you in contact with individuals or businesses looking for your services.

Pet Sitting/Dog Walking/Housesitting 

Pet and housesitting may sound like teenagers’ first job, but when done well, it can quickly turn into a steady stream of income. Not only is it almost completely free for you to do, but besides possible transport costs, you can also make a fair bit of money. 


Many people struggle to find time to walk their pets enough, and others don’t want to leave them alone for extended periods. You can easily build a network of pets you look after at very affordable rates. 

Taxi Service 

While not very low-cost if you don’t already own a vehicle, a taxi service is another brilliant way to make money. With costs usually just covering fuel and cleaning your vehicle, your overheads can be incredibly low. 

While competing with the likes of Uber may sound daunting, you would be able to charge any rate you wish, as you are working for yourself, and you may be able to charge considerably less than an established taxi company. 

Concierge Service

Many people don’t always have time to get their shopping done, return clothing that doesn’t fit, mailing packages, or any other small task that can take up a lot of time. Therefore, a “concierge” service of sorts could be just what they need. 

You can be the person who gets all these jobs done for people and charge per hour or per task. You may have a slow start, but after a while, you could easily find yourself with a few dozen clients that you help on a day-to-day basis. 

Etsy Store Owner

While an eBay store owner sells things they have found or bought, if you have arts and crafts experience, whether it be making clothes or painting, you can start an Etsy store instead. 

Etsy is the perfect place to sell your handmade items, and is completely free to join and start a storefront. If you are better at creating things online, you can also do things such as graphics, imagery for clothing, designs for 3D printed goods, etc. 

Graphic Design

Speaking of graphic design, you don’t need to be a professional artist to make money in the field. Many companies don’t always need a world-class graphic designer for the job, but they often want someone who will do the work so they don’t have to. 


With this in mind, there are plenty of graphic design platforms, such as Canva and Adobe Illustrator, that will allow you to create everything from a newsletter to a simple logo. This service is also ideal for smaller businesses with tight budgets, as you can charge less and potentially get consistent work from them. 

Furniture Restorer

Finally, restoring old furniture is another fantastic way to earn money. Secondhand furniture can often be bought for a fraction of its original price, and some people give it away for free if you are willing to pick it up.

Your investment is also small; a few paint brushes, varnish, paint, a hammer, some nails, etc, aren’t expensive at all, and will be everything you need to turn an old, worn table or chair  into something that someone will happily buy from you. Plus, you can learn how to fix or reupholster items with tutorials you can find on YouTube, expanding your skills even further. 

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