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16 Fast Money Business Ideas

Written by:

Edited by:

Reviewed by: Daniel Javor

Published on August 26, 2022

Updated on November 23, 2022

16 Fast Money Business Ideas

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16 Fast Money Business Ideas

Need money fast? Some types of businesses can be launched in a matter of days and almost immediately start providing some income. These include a food truck or shaved ice cart, getting into copywriting, proofreading, graphic design or virtual assistant work, or starting a social media or SEO consulting business. 

Even if you need money quickly, it’s best to take the time to prepare for launch, create a strong business plan and marketing campaign and ensure your business can stand the test of time.

Check out our list of fantastic fast money business ideas below.

1. Blog

Blog

In the podcast era, you might have thought that blogs had gone out of style. You would be wrong. More than 2 million blog posts go online every day, and after years of steady growth, the US is home to about 32 million blogs. Substack, the blog and newsletter platform, recently passed one million subscribers. As a result, there is real opportunity for a bold entrepreneur looking to start a blog business and join this massive market, even part-time.

It requires minimal investment. All you really need is a reliable computer and decent wifi. The major hurdle is coming up with a concept, an objective or mission for your blog business. You might choose generating funds to feed hungry children or delivering crucial news to the people of your city or state. Once you’ve found your niche, you’ll need to reach out across your network, LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and beyond, looking for all those who write on related subjects and asking them to get on board. You could offer discounts, incentives, or rewards to sweeten the deal. 

Once a couple of accomplished bloggers sign on, the paid advertisements will start rolling in and you’ll be on the road to success in the blogging business.

2. Travel Agency

How to start a travel agency business

If you love to travel and are always planning your next trip, starting a travel agency might be the perfect career choice. It’s a great way to share your love and knowledge of travel, and it can be very lucrative. US travel agencies are rebounding strongly from the pandemic and expect a 38% increase in revenue in 2022. Looking ahead, the market is expected to grow steadily through 2026.  

If you have the resources, starting a travel agency business can be a breeze. But first, you need to identify your target market. Will you focus on domestic or international travel? A lot of Americans go on short trips for vacation or business purposes, providing an opportunity for travel agencies to earn money. Arranging tours and outings for international visitors is also possible now that the US has eased travel requirements. Once you find your niche and draw up a business plan, you should work on establishing your brand and promoting it to find clients.

3. Copywriting

How to start a copywriting business

Can you whip up a compelling article under time constraints? If so, you may want to consider starting a copywriting business. Copywriting can be a lucrative and rewarding career, and it’s an ideal business for entrepreneurs who are creative and have a strong command of the English language. Demand for copywriters is high as their services are considered essential in marketing and advertising. More than 15,000 job openings for writers, including copywriters, are expected each year through 2030 in the US. 

The biggest barrier to entry is finding clients, but it shouldn’t be that difficult. Consider building your personal brand on social media by using captivating headers with great text and visuals, regularly sharing content, and keeping your posts positive and engaging. If you want to work with more than one client at a time, start by building your client list and your portfolio before taking on new projects. With a bit of creativity and hard work, you can build a successful copywriting business.

4. Digital Marketing

How to start a digital marketing agency

With many people staying at home and working remotely because of the pandemic, companies have also gone online and undertaken digital marketing initiatives to keep their target markets engaged. Global digital marketing is booming right now, and expected to more than double to $786 billion by 2026.

If you’re looking to start your own digital marketing business, you’re in luck. There has never been a better time to do it. Just catch up on the latest industry trends and know the steps in setting up a business. Keep in mind that since this is a relatively new industry, there are no concrete guidelines for success, but some insights into how other companies grew their own businesses can be helpful. Read and learn everything you can about the business before uploading your first social media post or your first digital ad. Once you’ve done that, you should be able to get the hang of digital marketing!

5. Event Planning

How to start an event planning business

The biggest events — weddings, reunions, graduation parties — are moments that people never forget. You can help create powerful memories for countless people with your own event planning business. As the pandemic recedes, the industry is growing fast and now worth $3 billion in the US alone, so the opportunity is real. If you enjoy organizing and planning, this could be the perfect venture for you — and now’s a great time to do it. 

More and more people are looking to plan long-delayed major events, from weddings to reunions to memorials and more. You can grab a piece of this growing market with a bit of training, confidence and organizational skills. Starting an event planning business requires little investment, and event planners often make 15-20 percent of the total cost. So just imagine how good you’ll feel working from home while planning a $100,000 wedding reception!

6. Virtual Assistant

How to start a virtual assistant business

The job didn’t even exist 20 years ago, but now, thanks to new technologies and the sharp increase in remote work during the pandemic, the virtual assistant industry is booming. After years of strong growth, the market is expected to be worth more than $4 billion by 2025. That means now is a fantastic time to start your own virtual assistant business, even part-time.  

To be clear, we’re talking about a human, not a digital or AI-powered, assistant, who provides administrative, technical, and creative services to clients remotely, via the internet. If you have a strong business skillset, you can get started with a minimal investment and run the company out of your own home while serving clients anywhere in the world. You could also add more skills over time, increasing your revenue streams and the rates you’re able to charge. 

With hard work and a bit of luck, you’ll soon be helping businesses run more smoothly and efficiently while making good money for yourself.

7. Food Truck

How to start a food truck business

Who doesn’t love food trucks? They seem to be everywhere these days, at parks and street fairs, music festivals, beaches, private parties and community events. Industry revenue in the US tripled in the years before the pandemic, and now food trucks are coming back strong as the pandemic recedes. As a result, now’s a great time to start your own food truck and provide your community with delicious meals while grabbing a share of this growing market. 

The first step, of course, will be settling on a menu. The possibilities are endless, from burritos to barbecue, from burgers to sausages, and from smoothies and milkshakes to pad thai and pizza. You could even go seasonal and offer frozen desserts in summer and gourmet soups in winter, and be able to draw a crowd year-round. The next major hurdle will be acquiring the necessary licenses and permits, which are absolutely crucial for any food-related business. 

Last but not least, you will need the food truck itself. It’s sure to be a significant investment, but you might be able to find a reasonably priced used truck to keep costs low. With a little luck, soon enough you’ll be up and running and making a nice return on that investment.

8. SEO Consulting

SEO Consulting

If you know just want to do to drive web traffic, you might consider starting your own SEO consulting business. SEO, or search engine optimization, is a booming field with a huge need for professionals with strong skills. SEO and internet marketing consultants in the US earned around $55 billion in 2022. As more businesses seek help building their online presence, SEO consulting is expected to surge 5% per year through 2027. 

Before you jump into it, though, you should be aware of the market looks like and how SEO professionals are finding success. The services performed by an SEO consultant include web marketing, keyword strategy, web analytics, content strategy planning, and link building. You can start showing prospective clients what you can do by promoting your own website. With a creative digital marketing strategy, you should be able to get your business up and running.

9. Web Design

How to start a web design business

Do you know of any legit business that doesn’t have a website? That’s right — in today’s digital world, businesses need to have a decent website if they expect to be taken seriously. That’s why web design is a $40 billion industry that’s seeing steady growth as the number of new US businesses hits record highs. All those new companies will need websites, which means right now is a great time to start your own web design business and design a bright future. 

First, if you’re not already an established graphic designer, you will need a bit of training. But there are many helpful options out there, including online educational platforms that offer subscriptions that allow you to take as many classes as you want. Alternatively, many universities offer affordable website design certification courses. Once that’s sorted, the next crucial step will be building your own website, which has to be fantastic or nobody will trust your skills. 

With some quality social media marketing, you should be able to rope in a client or two. Impress them and you’ll be on the road to design success.

10. Proofreading

How to Start a Proofreading Business

Do you have an eagle eye for grammar, spelling and punctuation errors? If so, starting a proofreading business could be perfect for you. With the rising popularity of content marketing, demand for proofreading services has increased. Close to 8,000 proofreaders and copy editors are employed in the US and demand for proofreading services is expected to increase at least 6% annually through 2029. 

A proofreading business can be a great way to make money from home. Proofreaders do the final quality check just before a manuscript or any text is published. Your potential clients include publishing houses, newspapers and magazines, and other businesses that outsource proofreading of business documents, marketing collaterals, manuscripts, academic papers, and other content. You will need to establish a strong online presence and brush up on your networking skills to find these clients and ensure the success of your proofreading business.

11. Social Media Management

Social Media

Social media is among the world’s fastest-growing industries, with stunning 25% annual growth predicted through 2026. By then it will be nearly a trillion dollar industry, which means that now is a great time to get in on the action and ride this wave.

Starting a social media business can be as simple as starting a blog about the media industry on LinkedIn or as complex as creating a fully-fledged Instagram business with lots of people using your content and products. With any social media business, the marketing will be absolutely crucial.

The primary goal will be to connect with your target audience on the relevant platform. This means that before you even get started, you should do some research and experimentation to decide which platform and its user profile best fits you and your interests. From there, you’ll just need to find your niche to start building a respected brand.

12. Bookkeeping

Bookkeeping

You probably think bookkeepers and accountants do largely the same work, and in some areas their work does overlap. But for the most part, bookkeepers perform the minute recording of day-to-day financial transactions, while accountants use bookkeepers’ data to create financial statements and review a company’s financial standing. The work of bookkeepers is, in fact, crucial to financial stability, which is why the US is home to 1.5 million bookkeepers and a growing $55 billion industry. 

If you’re hard working and good with numbers, you could start your own bookkeeping business and grab a share of that market while helping countless companies keep better track of their financials. What’s more, you could work from home to start, and market your services to clients around the world. 

Keep in mind that you will need to become a certified bookkeeper, which requires a good deal of training and experience. But once you’ve cleared that hurdle and begun building a reputation through great service, you’ll be well on your way to success.

13. Furniture Store

How to start a furniture store business

Who doesn’t love comfortable, appealing furniture? These days, when most of us are spending more and more time at home, it’s no surprise that the furniture industry is seeing strong, steady growth. A furniture business is a great way to earn a living because you get to work with your hands and be creative and build products that help people live in a more comfortable home. 

But it’s not an easy business to get into. It takes a great deal of time and determination, as well as a good amount of money, to determine your offerings and prices, produce and buy inventory and rent out a quality space. You also need to have an eye for detail and a high level of patience because customers rarely buy a bed set or dresser on a whim. 

But if you do everything right, you may find your products in demand sooner than expected! You could also refurbish and refinish aged and antique pieces, which often go for very high prices. There’s a lot of opportunity in furniture for the sharp entrepreneur.

14. Graphic Design

How to start a graphic design business

Strong graphic design is a crucial element of nearly every business’s branding and marketing strategy, which is why it’s always in great demand. After years of steady growth, the US graphic design industry is worth nearly $14 billion and offers real opportunity for the bold entrepreneur. You could start your own graphic design business from home and work with clients around the world, generating good money and turning your creative passion into a successful career. 

You will, however, need to have a strong creative streak and some skill and experience with graphic design software and tools. If you don’t have a related degree, you could brush up on your graphic design skills by taking courses at an online platform like Udemy. Next, it’s a good idea to research the market, see what sort of graphic design is trending lately, and keep an eye out for a market gap that might fit your skillset. 

Understanding and clarifying what you will offer, which businesses you are targeting and how you’ll stand out from the competition will be crucial elements to your success.

15. Hot Dog Cart

How to start a hot dog cart

In summertime, Americans consume more than 800 hot dogs per second. That’s a lot of dogs! Even so, the market is expected to continue to grow as more Americans show a preference for high-protein foods and manufacturers offer more enticing reduced-fat and vegan options. If you’re looking for a new venture, consider a hot dog cart. 

Setting up this business may look easy, but you will have to comply with permit and license requirements, acquire the necessary equipment, find suppliers, and decide on your product line. Competition will be tough as there are countless hot dog carts across the country so it’s to your advantage to find a good location with high foot traffic and promote your business aggressively.

Once you’ve established your brand, customers should be lining up to buy your hot dogs. What are you waiting for? Get yourself a cart and take a bite out of this huge market.

16. Shaved Ice Business

How to start a shaved ice business

What’s more refreshing than shaved ice on a hot summer’s day? Not much, which is why snow cones and shaved ice have been gaining in popularity in recent years and are now making a major splash. They’re sold in parks, along the street and at big events, and popular among all ages. Considering there’s always demand for it, starting a shaved ice business can be financially rewarding. 

Before you get started, you need to understand that competition is tough. Snow cones have leveled up from being sold in stalls and are now being offered in restaurants and bars. Many versions have also been introduced, some with local ingredients while others contain a splash of liquor. To compete you’ll need to innovate and come up with unique, appealing flavors. If you play your cards right, your shaved ice business can provide a steady income.