If you are looking to start a business on the side, the best way is to get into a freelance business which is basically offering services to people who need it and are willing to pay for it.
Why service business?
It is easy and quick to get started, compared to product business. For product businesses, you need to spend a lot of time and effort creating the products first before you start selling the product.
And here is the best part.
There is almost zero upfront cost for service business. And, as soon as you find a profitable business idea and craft your offer, you can start looking for paying clients.
So, how do you find an idea?
There are 2 ways to go about doing this:
- Sell a skill/expertise you have
- Sell someone else’s skills/expertise
(1) Sell A Skill You Have
As you might have known already, one of the most common ways of selling service is selling a skill which you already have.
What skills do you have that are sell-able? It could be anything at all. Maybe you know a few different languages.
You could provide language classes over Skype or you can provide one-on-one private lessons and charge even more.
Languages will always be in demand.
For example, I have a friend who teaches Japanese in Australia. She has built up a business in just a few months and makes $20,000 every single month!
She is doing what she loves and is making a great living from it. There is no better way than doing what you love and getting paid to do it!
Now, let me show you where you can start to get some business ideas from.
You can start from examining your own life and things that you do regularly. For instance, you can look at the following areas: your skills, your strength, your interests, books/magazines you read and etc.
Ask yourself the following questions:
What skills do I have?
What am I good at?
What advice do my friends always come to me for?
What can I teach people?
What can I help people with?
Next, what I want you to do is to list down your answers. For each answer, I need you to think of a potential service that you can offer. Your service should always tie into a benefit that your client will care about.
Remember that the goal here is to get as many ideas as possible. So, you just write down whatever idea that comes to your mind without dismissing or rejecting it.
This is because even if you might feel it is a silly idea at first, it could be a profitable business idea. For example, there are actually people who make money renting chicken to those who are interested in urban farming.
To validate your business idea, one of the easiest ways is to see if there are already other people doing the same thing. If there is, that is a very good sign because it means there is demand.
(2) Sell Someone Else’s Skills
Now, what if you do not have any sell-able skills or you’re not confident of selling your skills as a service?
Do not worry, because you can always sell someone else’s skills.
Selling someone else’s skills is very lucrative and scalable.
Why is it better than selling your own skills?
Because you leverage on other people’s time!
Let me give you a scenario:
For example, one day your neighbor goes to you and tells you that he will be going away for a couple of hours in the evening and asks whether you would be able to look after their 3 year old kid for a couple of hours for $200.
You think to yourself “Sure, why not? It’s easy money.”
So, your neighbor gives you the $200 and goes off.
Then suddenly you remember that you had already made plans to go somewhere at night and will not be able to take care of your neighbor’s 3 year old kid.
But you do not want to give up the $200!
So, what you do is you call your good and reliable buddy up and ask him if he would like to look after a 3 year old for a couple of hours for $100.
Outcome: You made $100 and did not have to babysit the 3 year old.
If you were to babysit the children yourself, you could only babysit one of those children and pocket $200.
But what if you got 5 friends to help babysit for you and you paid them $100 each?
You would get $500 and not even have to babysit one child!
In fact, you could even be out watching a movie or doing something else and pocket the $500!
That’s the power of leveraging other people’s time!
Below is a system that anyone can use to start a freelance business by selling other people’s skills:
Step 1: Identify a service that is evergreen and always in-demand(I have compiled a list of services at the end of the post)
Step 2: Find people who are willing to buy from you
Step 3: Get someone else to do the laborious work. Yes! You don’t even have to do the work yourself and all you do is wait for the work to be done and pass it to the client!
Step 4: Sit back, relax and collect the profits!
You could even be working in your full-time job and still be pocketing that extra income as someone else is carrying out the service that you sold, for you!