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10 Small Business Ideas You Could Get Started on Today

Kirsten Atkins

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Just a girl with a million and one business ideas, that all have killer branding and cute names. That was always my favorite part... that's why for the past 8 years, I've been designing brands and websites for other creatives and small business owners.

But I always knew there needed to be an easier and more affordable way to get a new business idea off the ground... that's why In A Day Co was born. 

I'm Kirsten

Deciding to start a business is such an exciting feeling! I’m so happy you’ve landed here– you’re obviously ready to do something different. You’re just maybe not sure what yet, and that’s okay. That’s why I’ve put together this list of 10 small business ideas you could get started on today.

As someone who has had a million and one business ideas throughout her life, I’m happy to share some of them with you! My favorite part is always the beginning– starting the business, creating ideal client profiles and the brand heart, designing the brand identity, making a website; these are the pieces I love to create. That’s why I’ve been helping others with those pieces of their business for the last 8 years.

Before we dive into the list, here are a few things to keep in mind:

What skills or hobbies do you already have?

  • Can you turn your hobby into a business? If you need to start making money right away, it’ll be easiest to utilize the skills you already have.

Are you willing to take courses, trainings or research to try something new?

  • If you are, be sure to set aside time each week to learn, practice and grow in this new profession. When I decided I wanted to start designing, I would do an Adobe Illustrator Youtube tutorial every Friday, so I could keep improving my skills and get faster.

How much time do you have before you need to start making money?

  • Some businesses will take a little longer to get off the ground then others, especially if you are just learning the industry too. If you need to start making money  (like this week!!) stick with something you’re already good at, have background knowledge in, or already do as a hobby.

Okay now let’s get into it: here are 10 creative small business ideas you could start today. Under each idea, I’ve also listed an action item for you to do today (because actionable steps are how to make it happen) and came up with promotional idea to help you get it off the ground!

Small Business Ideas you could get started on today:

1. Pop-up Flower Bar or Florist

I absolutely love this one– it’s one of the ideas I’ve had for myself in the past. If you are good at arrangements, maybe a florist is the way to go! However, if you just love flowers, a pop-up flower bar could be a great option (and one that requires very little arrangement skill). You could even expand to a flower truck in the future.

Start with something simple like this tiered flower display stand with buckets. Fill each bucket with a different type of flower or greenery, have a portable sidewalk sign with instructions and pricing and find a local wholesale floral shop or order from stems in bulk from Sam’s Club or Costco. Here’s some inspiration:

Images sourced via Pinterest. Follow us on Pinterest and get more flower pop-up shop inspiration on our Pinterest Board here!

What to do today to get started:

Research local wholesale flower shops, and maybe even go visit one to get inspired and excited for your new business.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Reach out to local coffee shops and ask if you can do a pop-up in front of, or in, their shop. It’s the perfect place for a floral bar pop-up. Get a morning coffee with a “you-pick” bouquet of flowers, who wouldn’t want that!

2. Front Porch Bakery

I’ve been seeing this a lot on Instagram, and I think it’s such a great idea! Baked goods falls under cottage foods, so you’re legally allowed to sell them from your home kitchen, which saves drastically on start up costs. Be sure to check with your state and local laws to make sure this is the case for you!

If you love to bake, whether it’s sourdough or cookies, this could be a great options for you. Start with just a few really good items and expand from there.

Images sourced via Pinterest. Follow us on Pinterest and get more flower pop-up shop inspiration on our Pinterest Board here!

What to do today to get started:

Reach out to friends and family and ask them what their favorite baked good you’ve made was and what they would pay for it.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

If you are going to do a front porch setup, reach out to a couple micro-influencers in your area who want to support a new local business (and are happy to get paid in baked goods ;)). Have them make a reel or a few stories of going to pick up their baked goods from your front porch pick up station to help get the word out! You could also post in local Facebook groups– I know those types of post always get so much support in my local community.

3. Bookkeeper

There are so many small businesses, online businesses, etc., and they all need a bookkeeper! If you’re organized, enjoy numbers and are detailed oriented– this might just be the perfect fit for you.

A certification or degree is not required, but it may help you stand out from the crowd.

What to do today to get started:

Intuit offers a free training on bookkeeping. I challenge you to get through the entire first lesson today.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Reach out to people you already know who run a small business and may need a bookkeeper. Offer them a trial period, or give them 2 months “free” when they hire you for the year!

4. Pinterest Manager

Everybody wants to be, claims to be, or recommends being a social media manager. It is a very diluted market at this point, but I believe there is a gap in the market when it comes to Pinterest marketing. Becoming a Pinterest manager will allow you to be creative, set your own hours and has little to no start-up cost.

What to do today to get started:

If this interests you, but you don’t know much about using Pinterest as a business tool, I challenge you to take this free, one hour Pinterest Marketing quick-start course put on by Tailwind (our favorite Pinterest scheduling platform!).

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

This can be a huge referral based business. Offer 2-3 people you know who run a small business and could benefit from Pinterest a free profile set-up or optimization with new or updated pin graphics. Give yourself 2 weeks to get their profiles in tip top shape, then pitch them a monthly management package. If you do a good job, the referrals should start coming in!

5. Charcuterie Board or Grazing Table Business

Charcuterie board businesses are booming right now. I actually did this on the side for awhile as a creative outlet and to get away from screens for a bit– ha!

Some states require you to work out of a commercial kitchen for this, so be sure to check your states laws.

These images are all from when I did charcuterie boards! Follow us on Pinterest and get more flower pop-up shop inspiration on our Pinterest Board here!

What to do today to get started:

Research you states laws for this type of food service. If you are required to have a commercial kitchen, check for shared kitchens in your local area.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

When I launched my charcuterie side business, I put together 10 charcuterie boxes and dropped them off to local food influencers. I didn’t ask them to post or anything, I just asked if I could give them a free box! Most everyone did end up posting, the biggest even did an in-feed post which I was so grateful for! It helped me get a good amount of followers right off the bat and resulted in several first orders.

6. Real Estate Agent

Okay, so this one is going to take you a few months at minimum to get off the ground, but it is a great career option! In Florida, the average person can get their license in 2-5 months. It’s important in this business to come up with ways to set yourself apart.

What to do today to get started:

Research how to get a realtors license in your state, and enroll in the program.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

I designed a brand for a new real estate agent a couple years ago, and during our brainstorm session she talked about being really excited to sell to single women buying their first home. I thought that would be so smart, and a way to stand out– choose a specific ideal client like that and speak directly to them in your marketing.

Most other industries niche down, but I rarely see realtors do this. It could be a great way to stand out from the sea of real estate agents! Just do some research to make sure the ideal client you choose is actually buying homes.

7. Photographer

This is another great business to be in, but it’s also another business where you have to find ways to stand out and market yourself effectively. If you find yourself always being the one people ask to take photos, or you already photograph something as a hobby, this is might be the business for you.

There are so many online courses for photographers, just try not to get lost in the noise. Focus on practicing– shooting, editing and perfecting your style. This doesn’t just have to be shooting people either! If the thought of shooting a wedding makes you want to throw up, think food photography, nature or even pet portraits.

What to do today to get started:

Do you have a camera you can start with? If not, research the best camera for new photographers and purchase it or make a savings plan and start saving!

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Find a local event (that’s relevant to your target audience) and offer to take free photos for the event. Bring business cards to hand out to people. It would even be cute to bring an instax camera alongside your real camera for instant gratification. Attach their photo to your business card, and tell them to email you for the real picture!

8. Host Workshops / Events

Do you love being around people and sharing your passion and knowledge? Consider hosting workshops or events locally and virtually! Think cocktail classes, cheeseboard classes, floral workshops– literally any business on this list you could be an educator in instead and host workshops and events.

If you’re going to do this, make sure you’re an expert in the field!

What to do today to get started:

Research local venues and type up a potential workshop itinerary to get inspired and excited.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Team up with a local business to host your first event! Be sure to bring business cards and let everyone know that you’re available to hire at the end.

9. Turn Your Hobby into a Shop

Do you spend your spare time crafting? Turn your creations into an online store! Starting on Etsy is the easiest way to get started, and then you can grow from there.

Images sourced via Pinterest. Follow us on Pinterest and get more flower pop-up shop inspiration on our Pinterest Board here!

What to do today to get started:

Sign up for an Etsy account and get your first 40 listings free.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Experiment with Etsy Advertising! Watch a few Youtube tutorials, commit to an ad budget and give it try! Give it a week or so, and then revisit your ad to see how it is performing.

10. Virtual Assistant

With so many people working from home and starting online businesses, there is no need shortage for virtual assistants. This is an easy industry to break into, and grow fast in. Think about what you are good at and start there. So many people need help with tasks like email management, scheduling, etc.

Fun fact! I actually freelanced right out of college and marketed myself as a “virtual assistant.” I learned how to do so much during this time because I would say yes to almost any task! I created my own website for my virtual assistant business, and then clients started asking me to design their sites, which is how I ended up in the web design business!

What to do today to get started:

Look at this list of virtual assistant tasks, mark down a few that you could be good at or that interest you and create a portfolio based on those tasks in Canva.

How to get it off the ground (promotional idea):

Start applying to as many jobs as you can find with the portfolio you made. Look in Facebook groups, on indeed and on upwork and start getting some experience under your belt while you start your brand and build your business.

Bonus: Start a blog (or a business above with a blog!)

I didn’t include this in the main list because it takes quite a bit of time to start making a good income from a blog. You will be doing a lot of “free” work up front before you ever start to see income from ads or partnerships. However, a blog is a great companion to any of the businesses listed above and a great way to market your business! Yes, even in 2024– you’re here reading this, aren’t you?

Next steps:

Did you of the businesses above resonate with you? Be sure to complete the action item today, so you can get the ball rolling. And then start brainstorming! Anyone who knows me would tell you that I’m the person they would go to for a good brainstorming session about their new idea. If you want help brainstorming your new business (even if it’s not on this list!), creating an action list and coming up with creative marketing and launch ideas so you can start making money as soon as possible, book a Brand Brainstorm session with me here:

In this 60 minute brainstorm session, we will go over your idea, and then bounce ideas back and fourth. I’ll help you come up with creative ideas for marketing, a next steps list to get your business off the ground ASAP and fun ways you can share your new business (and generate new leads) right away! This is a causal and fun conversation that will help get the wheels turning so you can create big things– Book your session!

To read: How to choose the perfect name for your new business

Cheers to you and your future business!

10 small business ideas you could get started on today!