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8 Ideas For Profitable Online-Only Businesses


With more people than ever before working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some keen entrepreneurs are looking for ways to make money online without needing heavy investment in a new business venture.

The truth is, starting any new business is hard work. However, creating an online business is a lot easier than launching a bricks-and-mortar retail concern. With that in mind, here are some examples of profitable online-only businesses for you to consider:

1. Dropshipping.

One of the easiest yet profitable online businesses you could start is dropshipping. In a nutshell, the concept involves selling products online, and when taking orders, buying those products from a dropshipping company that will send the orders directly to your customers.

You don’t need to hold any physical inventory, and the dropshipping company takes care of all the shipping and logistics requirements. What’s more, dropshipping firms like Spocket.co offer “white label” solutions, so your customers don’t see any details from your dropshipper.

2. Translations.

It’s no secret there’s a big global demand for translation services. Each day, millions of businesses and individuals want documents and other texts translated from one language to another. Some clients might even be government departments or non-profit organizations.

One profitable online business you could set up is a translation service. You could create an innovative online portal where your clients can upload their documents, you translate them, and then provide links to new online documents with the converted content.

It doesn’t even matter if you’re only fluent in the English language because you can outsource the translation work to a third party and make a profit without really doing anything.

3. App Development.

Are you a keen coder and love nothing better than to create all kinds of excellent applications? If so, it’s worth considering a new venture where you offer mobile app development services.

You can offer an online-only service, and you don’t even need to have physical meetings with your clients as all communications can get done electronically or via Zoom meetings. 

The app development market is very lucrative, and many brands are keen to develop dedicated apps for their businesses. You don’t need to worry about taking on too much work, as you can outsource some projects to third parties if required.

4. Event Ticket Sales.

Virtually all event and venue promoters realize that the best way of selling tickets to any event is by offering an online ordering service. The trouble is, conventional ticket sales platforms are often slow, especially when accessed by millions of people simultaneously.

You can take advantage of that fact by building an event ticket sales platform like TicketsOnSale.com that is always fast to load and where transactions are always smooth and secure.

It’s easier than you think to create a lightning-fast website, and by investing in the right hosting technology for your event ticket sales site, you can soon develop an almost passive revenue stream.

5. Become a YouTube Star.

It might shock you to learn that most of today’s popular YouTube channel operators earn a significant income from the video content they create. YouTube provides an easy-to-use and manage platform where you can monetize your videos.

If you can create engaging viral videos and have good ideas for cross-promoting your videos on other social networks, you can soon start reaping the financial rewards of your efforts. 

Plus, you can even sell merchandise or private subscriptions via your channel to boost your revenue stream. It’s a highly viable online business idea and one that you can operate in your own time.

6. Graphic Design.

Another lucrative online business idea is graphic design. Each year, billions of people worldwide require graphic design and illustration services for various reasons, from creating a new brand logo to designing artwork for children’s books.

If you’re creative and have the right computer equipment and graphic design software at your disposal, you can easily create an online graphic design business. Plus, you can market your services to specific niche markets.

Good graphic designers are often hard to find in today’s online marketplace. However, if you create a positive reputation for your graphic design services, you’ll find much of your revenue is from existing clients.

7. Packaged Goods.

Consumers often want to purchase collections of items or “kits” to solve problems they are experiencing. The trouble is, consumers have to spend a lot of time researching what it is they want and finding out the hard way whether groups of items work well together or not.

You can offer a unique online service to consumers where you package two or more products together and sell them in kit form. Doing so makes it easier for people to make a buying decision, and they feel they will save time and money by spending money with you.

The package goods or solutions you offer can be for any niche market. For example, you could provide motherboard bundles for PC users who want a quick and easy solution to upgrade their outdated computers.

8. Affiliate Marketing.

Some people want to start a passive business they can run alongside their day jobs. If that sounds like you, one thing you could consider is affiliate marketing. In a nutshell, affiliate marketing is where you promote something and get paid a commission on any sale referrals.

One of the easiest routes to affiliate marketing is setting up a website or blog and promoting specific products and services on it. When your site visitors click or tap affiliate links to external sites, they can buy the items you recommended or featured on your site.

Once you set up your website or blog, you don’t need to do much work other than occasionally creating new content that you think will attract specific audiences to buy the products and services you promote.


The above isn’t an exhaustive list of profitable online businesses, but it’s a subset of the ones that are straightforward to set up and have proven results with other entrepreneurs.