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Online businesses have been around practically since the advent of the Internet. After all, where else can you earn income and feel fulfilled by your work while working from home? The web has always been a space for entrepreneurs to set up shop in a way that’s convenient and affordable.

Over time, although digital business is still flourishing, the landscape has changed. As the Internet gains more capabilities and gets more complex, so do the opportunities for setting up an online company.

Here are 10 types of businesses taking off right now that you can get involved in to earn some extra income.

10 Types of Digital Businesses Taking Off Right Now

  1. Affiliate Marketing

  2. Selling Crafts Online

  3. Drop Shipping

  4. Web Design

  5. Social Media Consulting

  6. Bridal Concierge

  7. Selling Industry Expertise

  8. Selling DIY Patterns and Designs

  9. Becoming a Virtual Assistant

  10. Domain Dealing

Four people holding speech bubble signs. Reviews and comments can help build the authority of your side hustle online, and is a common factor in businesses taking off.

1. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is getting increasingly popular nowadays. The industry is projected to grow to $6.8 billion by 2021, making it ripe with opportunities for digital entrepreneurs.

In this industry, you promote a different company’s product or service on your blog, and you receive a commission on any sale that happens through your website’s link. All you need is a blog or other online platform for written content. The larger your readership, the more money you can earn.

If you’re interested in diving into affiliate marketing, you can start right here at Selz. For anyone you refer to Selz, who signs up using your magic link, you’ll be paid 200% of their monthly plan price!

2. Selling Crafts Online

If you have an artistic side and make crafts, you can earn some income by selling them in stores, farmer’s markets, and, of course, on an online store. Profit from your skills by setting up an online store and doing some marketing through your in-person and online networks.

digital businesses

What’s great about this strategy is instead of having to go to a brick-and-mortar storefront to sell your items, you can do it from home; this will free up valuable time to perfect your craftsmanship and generate more products. In fact, 97% of Etsy shop owners run their business from home.

3. Drop Shipping

Similar to affiliate marketing, setting up a drop shipping enterprise is a great way to capitalize on the fact that online shopping increased by 45% in 2016 alone. As demand increases for online products, more people are starting to become drop shippers to meet that demand and turn a profit.

digital businesses
Photo via Smart Insights

Basically, drop shipping involves you putting up another business’s products – anything from clothing to cleaning products – on your website. When a customer buys a product from you, you pay the other company for the product at a price slightly lower than what the customer paid you. The other company then ships it directly to the client. This is an easy way to build up revenue over time.

4. Web Design

77% of web design agencies believe that poor website design is the main weakness for businesses. With practically every company needing a website to get customers, the demand for web designers is at an all-time high. Since small businesses often can’t afford to hire web design agencies, you can gather clients and help them with their web design needs.

If you’re interested in working with a web design agency for your own online store, or are considering starting your own web design agency, check out our agency spotlight on Inspace Creative.

5. Social Media Consulting

With 96% of small businesses using social media marketing, this is a great opportunity to set up a business helping them with it. Many small companies handle their own social media marketing but can get overwhelmed with all of the responsibilities associated with running a business – which means their social media presence can fall by the wayside.

As a social media consultant, you can help small businesses determine the best strategies to attract their target audience on social media platforms.

6. Bridal Concierge

digital businesses

The wedding industry is booming – the average cost of an American wedding is over $30,000. As weddings get more lavish and expensive, they also get more complex. You can help happy couples plan their big day as an online bridal concierge.

If you have strong organizational skills and a passion for weddings, as a bridal concierge you can help couples with the nitty gritty wedding details like organizing vendors and schedules.

7. Selling Industry Expertise

One of your most valuable assets with businesses taking off right now is your knowledge. Have it work for you by selling your expertise online. Whether it’s teaching a language, training people in marketing, or practically anything else, you can turn a steady profit by educating others.

This strategy has a lot of potential. For instance, Code Academy, which trains people in coding, recently got a $30 million investment.

There are several ways to do this: You can create webinars, e-books, newsletters, or a combination of these. Create your product, market it through email campaigns and social media, and get teaching.

8. Selling DIY Patterns and Designs

Similar to selling your expertise, creating and selling patterns and designs for sewing is one of a handful of businesses taking off right now, and is surprisingly lucrative endeavor. Liberty Jane Clothing, for instance, makes $50,000 a month doing exactly this type of work.

You can make and sell blueprints, prefabricated sewing kits, construction designs, and sewing patterns to help your customers create something on their own. By marketing your business through YouTube sewing lessons, email marketing, and social media, you can quickly gather a loyal following.

9. Becoming a Virtual Assistant

digital businesses
Photo via udemy

For every $1 billion invested in the United States, $122 million is wasted due to subpar project performance. This has created a need for virtual assistants and task managers, who assist businesses with tasks like blogger outreach, market research, and writing email responses.

If you have strong organizational skills and can carry out tasks efficiently, you can sign up for tasks you want to complete on a website like TaskRabbit, start building a client base, then go into business on your own.

10. Domain Dealing

Finally, entering the world of domain real estate can be a great side business. Develop a portfolio of different domains to spread your risk, and sell them for higher prices to turn a profit. The average portfolio turnover rate is between 1% and 2%, so make sure your portfolio is large and diverse to make regular sales.

With the rapid development of online business dealings, it’s getting easier and more lucrative to set up one of these businesses taking off and start selling online today. No matter what you’re selling, physical products or services, setting up an online store is a great way to get your name out there.

Start a free 14-day trial of Selz today and get your store set up in 5 simple steps!

What are some other ways you can earn money online?

About the author

Ashish Verma

Ashish Verma

​AJ Agrawal is a growth marketing consultant for startup and publicly traded companies. He is the Founder of Verma Media, a leading growth marketing agency in San Francisco that focuses on partnering with disruptive technology companies including IBM and Shopify. AJ has written about the marketing strategies he has used to help companies 10x their growth in Forbes, Fast Company, Fortune, Inc. Magazine, Entrepreneur, The Huffington Post and over a dozen more outlets.

8 comments

  1. Dan Marsh

    Wow, I didn’t realize there were all of these different types of businesses. Helpful post, thanks for sharing.

    1. Hanna Whirty

      We hope you found the post useful Dan! Thanks for reading.

  2. Denise P

    Great read, thanks for this awesome list. Always lookign for more ideas

    1. Hanna Whirty

      Thanks for reading, Denise!

    1. Hanna Whirty

      We’re glad you enjoyed it! Thank you for reading!

  3. Can Pamungkas

    Thanks for sharing a great post, it’s really useful.
    I did the first point before (affiliate marketing with CB), but not anymore.

    1. Selz

      Bryce Patterson

      Great to hear you found this post helpful! Thanks for checking us out and commenting!

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