How to start online business with no money

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If you’re looking at “how to start an online business with no money?” You’re in the right spot! Here, we’ll discuss how in today’s digital world, you can start an online business even if you don’t have a lot of money.

Here are the initial steps to help you get started, along with 15 online business ideas that require little to no upfront investment.

Initial Steps on How to Start Online Business with No Money

Identify a Niche

Research to find a gap in the market or a unique angle to approach a common product or service.
Consider your passions, hobbies, and skills. An online business will be more rewarding if you’re genuinely interested in it.

Create a plan for your business.

Company Description: A brief overview of your business, explaining what it does and its legal structure.

Market Research: Information about your target customers, like their age, location, and preferences. Also, how do you compare to competitors?

Products and Services: What you’re selling and why people would want to buy it.

Marketing Strategy: How you plan to promote your business, whether through social media, ads, or emails.

Logistics and Operations Plan: How you’ll get your product or service to customers, whether through suppliers, logistics companies, or in-house production.

Financial Plan: Details on how you’ll make and spend money, including expenses, income projections, and cash flow.

Select a Business Name

The next step in starting your business is picking a name. It should be catchy, easy to remember, and not already in use. You can use a free business name generator if you’re stuck.

Keep in mind that this name will stick with your business, so choose one you like and use it as your business grows.

Once you have a name, make sure to grab online stuff that matches it.

Related: How to Buy a Business with No Money

Create a website

Starting a business used to be free, but now it’s a good idea to invest in an online store. Your website is like your business’s home on the internet, where you can tell people about what you sell.

Offer a valuable product or service

To offer a valuable product or service, you must provide something that fulfills a need or desire in your target audience. This could be a physical product, a digital service, expert advice, entertainment, or any solution that improves their lives. The key is understanding your audience’s pain points and delivering a solution that addresses those pain points effectively. By consistently delivering value, you build trust and loyalty, which are essential for a successful online business.

Advance purchase

Starting a business is like experimenting. Some ideas will succeed, while others won’t. To reduce risk, you can try preorders.

Preordering means getting paid before making the product. It gives you money to start making things, gets people excited, and makes them feel special. People like being the first to try something new.

Get money to help your business grow

If you don’t have money to start a business, you’ll probably need to invest a lot of time and effort or get help from a support network. And, eventually, you’ll likely need money to grow your business.

Loans are an option when your business succeeds. You need to show you can pay it back.

Ask friends and family to invest in your startup. They might want more money back later or a small part of your business.

Related: 25 Small Business Ideas (High Profit in Low Capital)

15 Online Business Ideas with No Money to Get You Started

1. Social media ad management 

Start by learning about social media ads online for free. Make a good online profile to show your skills. First, offer your help for free to get experience. Talk to small businesses that need social media ads. Use free tools to plan and post for your clients.


Choose platforms based on your target audience. Facebook and Instagram for broad reach, LinkedIn for B2B, and TikTok for younger demographics.

When you make money, use some of it for ads and better tools. This will help your online ad business grow.

2. Help Businesses Thrive as a Consultant


Make a free website and social media pages to share what you know. Meet people online, provide free advice to build trust, and later charge for your help once you have customers. Use your earnings to make your business bigger. It might take time and effort, but you can create a thriving online consulting business without spending money at the start.

 3. Start a Dropshipping store

Want to start an online business without making, storing, or shipping stuff? Try dropshipping.

Here’s how it works: You get your products from makers. When a customer buys something, you tell the maker, and they ship it to the customer. You don’t have to keep stuff in stock. Easy

Take a look at all the websites where you can do dropshipping.

4. Sell Digital Products

Develop digital products like eBooks, online courses, printables, or templates. If you’re passionate about fitness, create a free blog about home workouts and offer a free eBook with workout plans as a lead magnet. Use free tools like Canva for design or Google Docs for content creation. Use free email marketing tools like Mailchimp. Partner with others in your niche for cross-promotion or collaborations to expand your reach.

5. Craft and Sell Handmade Products

Want to start a small business? Try selling things you make online, like art, crafts, jewelry, skincare, or woodworking. Use websites like Etsy. You can also make a subscription box to earn steady money. This can help you grow your business without needing outside money.

Craft and sell handmade products on online marketplaces like Etsy, Amazon Handmade, or at local craft fairs and shops.

6. Become an affiliate marketer

When you tell your online followers about a product you like using a unique link, many stores will give you a bit of money from the sale. You just need a website, blog, or social media page. Amazon and Shopify have programs for this.

how-to-start-online-business-with-no-moneyFor example, if you’re good at photography, people who like your work value your advice on which cameras to buy. Turn that advice into special links, and you can make some money without doing much. Just don’t bother your readers with stuff they don’t care about, and always tell them when you’re getting paid for it.

Become an affiliate marketer by joining affiliate programs offered by companies or through affiliate networks like Amazon Associates.

7. Kickstart Your Custom T-Shirt Printing Online Business

Print-on-demand is like a special kind of dropshipping. You have fantastic designs that can go on stuff like shirts, mugs, or bags.

When someone buys from your website, you tell a company to make it. They print it and send it straight to your buyer. You don’t need to store anything.

Begin a custom t-shirt business on Printify for a seamless launch.

8. Offer Paid Online Courses

Many folks sell courses online without websites. You can sell on social media by building an audience. It’s an easy way to make money online. Avoid surveys and ad-clicking sites for lasting income.

Share your expertise through guides, courses, or e-books. It takes time, but it builds a strong online business.

9. Online Dating Coach

Make a blog or YouTube channel with helpful dating advice. You can use free tools like Zoom or Skype for coaching sessions. When you make money, invest it in a good website and marketing to reach more people. For instance, Sarah began a YouTube channel giving dating advice.

When she had lots of viewers, she started charging for coaching sessions. That’s how you can start a dating coaching business without much money.

10. Remote Video Editing Services

Starting an online video editing business for free is doable. Learn editing from online tutorials, build a portfolio by helping friends, and use free software like DaVinci Resolve.

Showcase your work on a website or social media. Network on LinkedIn or freelance sites, offer competitive rates and reinvest your earnings for growth.

11. online pet-sitting business

To launch an online pet-sitting business with no money, focus on building skills and a reputation first. Volunteer at local animal shelters or offer your services to neighbors. Create a professional online presence through free social media and pet care forums. As you gain experience and clients, reinvest your earnings to grow your business.

12. Freelance Market Research

To start a no-cost freelance market research business, first, figure out what you’re good at. Then, make a professional online profile to show your skills. Begin by helping people for free or at a low cost to build a good reputation. Use websites like Upwork or Fiverr to find clients.


Focus on a specific area you like, like food, and help local restaurants or bloggers. Share your work on social media to get noticed. As you gain experience and trust, you can charge more for your services. That’s how you start a freelance market research business without spending much money.

13. Start Podcasts

Podcasts are getting popular, and Spotify is spending a lot of money on them. There are so many podcasts out there, that it can be overwhelming if you make a podcast about something specific that you and your friends like, more people might listen.

There are online tools like ZenCastr and Riverside FM that make it simple to make good-quality podcasts. They take care of the tricky microphone stuff and fix the sound after you record.

14. App Testing

Starting an online business as an app tester without spending any money is possible by becoming a freelance app tester. First, create a specialized profile about yourself on websites like Upwork or Fiverr. Then, reach out to people who develop apps, whether they are games or useful phone applications, and offer to assist them in ensuring the functionality of their apps.

As you assist more app developers, they will provide positive feedback about your work. Once you have accumulated some favorable reviews and built a portfolio, you can begin charging for your services.

15. SaaS (Software as a Service)

SaaS (Software as a Service) is a cloud-based software distribution model where applications are hosted and accessed online, not locally.

To start an online business with no money for your SaaS idea, begin by researching your target audience and their needs. Create a basic version of your software using free tools and collaborate with others who can help you. Use social media and content marketing to attract users.

Offer a free version of your SaaS to get people interested, and once you have some users, think about ways to make money, like offering a premium version.

Top Tips on How to start online business with no money

  • Focus on solving a specific problem or niche to stand out and attract customers to your online business.
  • Leverage your skills, start small, and use free online tools and platforms to kickstart your no-money online business.
  • Build a strong online presence by consistently creating valuable content and engaging with your target audience.
  • Collaborate with influencers or complementary businesses to expand your reach and gain exposure for your online venture.

Summary of How to start an online business with no money

Starting an online business with no money requires creativity. Begin by offering a service or skill you possess, use free platforms for a website, and leverage social media for marketing. Gradually reinvest profits to grow your venture. Hustle and determination are key!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) About How to start online business with no money

How can I start my own business online for free?

1. Choose a niche.
2. Create a website or use a free platform.
3. Offer a valuable product or service.
4. Promote on social media.
5. Monetize through ads, affiliate marketing, or selling products/services.

Read More: 25 Small Business Ideas (High Profit in Low Capital)

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