You might be limited to a strict budget when you want to start a business, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have any options. It is possible to start a business with very little money, if you have the right combination of skills, work ethic, and marketing know-how.
Follow these simple guidelines to start a business when you have little to no money. Learn how to make money today.
1. Make something.
Yes, making something does take an initial cost in supplies, but oftentimes, these products can be sold for many times over their actual cost. What you decide to make is up to you, but there are several places you can sell your handmade options online:
Etsy is one of the largest online markets for almost anything homemade, from jewelry to wooden toys for kids.
eBay is one of the biggest online ecommerce marketplaces in the world, and its streamlined store options, easy checkout through Paypal, and customizable listing options make it a great choice for selling items.
Olx is one of the Philippines’ biggest buy and sell Website. You can upload and post free online classified ads of your products here.
2. Resell something.
If you don’t want to make anything (or you don’t consider yourself a creative person), many business owners have grown large businesses just by reselling products that have already been made. This can be done through a variety of ways or channels:
Drop shipping: Set up an online store and partner with drop-shipping companies that will do all the order fulfillment for you. Online ecommerce platform Shopify has a great drop shipping guide.
Thrift stores and garage sales: If you know where to look, you can find items at thrift stores, antique shops, flea markets and garage sales and resell them online or in your local community for more than you purchased them for.
3. Sell your services.
One way to start a business with little to no startup capital is to sell your services, instead of a physical product. There’s a huge variety of services you can offer, depending on your background and interests.
Some will require advanced degrees, such as accounting, while others require little more than a working knowledge of how it’s done (such as babysitting, lawn mowing or personal assistance).
Because you are selling your services, you will need a branding plan to make sure your name and company gets in front of the people who may need the service. Some places that are free for promoting your services include Fiverr, Craigslist, Upwork, Taskrabbit and Skillshare.
It’s also useful to have a website to show examples of your work, list your experience, and blog about your industry to draw visitors.
4. Barter to get what you need.
Unfortunately, it’s extremely hard to start a business without any type of funds at all. Even creating a freelance-writing business utilizing Upwork and a free Wordpress or Wix website will still require a computer to work on as well as Internet. However, there are ways to get supplies you need for starting your business without money.
For instance, if you find yourself in need of a used laptop, try to barter for it. Build a new website for a used electronics supplier, or offer babysitting services to your neighbor for their old Macbook.
5. Utilize low-cost services.
As mentioned previously, you can use sites to advertise your products and services on, but you can also use these platforms to build up your own company. Sort by reviews and look at past examples to find a service provider that matches your style.
This is a great way to get branding materials, printed items or other needed items without much cost. And for additional savings, be sure to look for coupon codes on sites such as RetailMeNot before checking out at any online retailer!
Starting a business requires ingenuity and a passion for what you are doing. Once you find yourself doing something you enjoy, you will be more likely to find ways to make it all come together.
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This article originally appeared on Entrepreneur.com. Minor edits have been done by the Entrepreneur.com.ph editor.