The Best Low-Cost Business Ideas for Students
BY SYLVIA KOHL
Want to earn some extra cash to support yourself throughout college and acquire experience on the way? If so, why not start your own business? If so many students find time and energy to drudge away at part-time (and sometimes even full-time) jobs while in college, is running your own small business all that different? One thing is certain – in terms of money, experience and just plain fun, it can be much more attractive than working for somebody. Here are a few interesting ideas for you to try. They don’t require much startup budget and won’t take up all your time:
1. Residential Cleaning Service
You can start your own cleaning business by just posting an ad online. It may start a little slow, but once you get a couple of clients and demonstrate that you can be trusted, new customers will begin cropping up through referrals alone. Cleaning service is all about trust, and no amount of advertising will replace personal referrals from those who are grateful to you. In time, you can recruit other students to join you, turning this into a full-fledged business. If you don’t believe it can be done, check out Student Maid – currently among the biggest independently owned cleaning services in Florida, it was started by a single person exactly the way we’ve described.
2. Dropshipping Store
Drop shipping is an arrangement in which you are responsible for sales, and the third party (a store or a manufacturer) stores the inventory and ships products to the client. In its simplest form, it works like this: you start an online store, but when somebody buys something, it is the supplier who fulfills the order. The only things you have to do is ensure that sales keep flowing and do your own customer service. You may deal with a single supplier or sell different groups of products aimed at different categories of clients. Stuff you can sell this way varies from mattresses to jewelry and from clothing to perfume, so don’t limit your fantasy.
3. Making Chatbots
Chatbot industry has reached the point when almost any business worth anything either needs one or believes it does. This means that demand currently is almost unlimited, and anybody willing to work in this field can find clients if he asks for a reasonable price. What to do if you don’t have any programming experience? In fact, you don’t need it. You can successfully build chatbots with zero knowledge of coding – all you have to do is read how they work, choose a platform and start working.
4. Selling Digital Products of Courses
The good thing about digital products is that once they are created, you don’t have to spend nearly as much time on them as on any other type of work. What can you sell? Anything you know a lot about. Digital products are usually based on personal knowledge or talents. If you have any skill or hobby, you can teach somebody or tell somebody about, and you can potentially create a sellable product out of it.
If you are currently in college, you are likely to know more about some academic subjects than most people do. Even if you don’t consider your level of knowledge to be anything special, remember that there are always those who struggle with the things you believe to be easy. There are a lot of opportunities to advertise your services in college, so why not try it? There will always be a demand for good tutors.
Starting your own independent business, even if it is very small, can be incredibly rewarding. It will also give you the necessary experience that can be used later – and the earlier you start out, the better.
Sylvia Kohl is an IT teacher with more than 8 years of professional experience. Her main spheres of interest are e-education and she convinced that learning process doesn’t stop after years in school and university.