One-Person Business Ideas. Hello, Solopreneurs!

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One-Person Business Ideas. Hello, Solopreneurs!

You know the feeling — you've felt it many times, and you find yourself thinking about it every time you have a quiet moment. Your mind drifts to thoughts of one-person business ideas. Your eyes do that thing where they just zone out for a while, staring into the abyss. That same statement rolls around inside your brain and it just won't go away:

"I could do it better."

Perhaps you could. But like many before you, you know that the only way to prove that you can do it better is by starting your own business where you control the quality and the processes that will ultimately make it better than the last person who has done it.

Don't worry, we get it. All you need are some solid solopreneur ideas to get you started!

Incfile | Start a Business Guide

How Do I Start a Small One-Person Business?

Let's say you have a few one-person business ideas. Where do you start? This is a big question and one that countless would-be solopreneurs have asked time and time again. After all, the idea of going from employee to entrepreneur is highly coveted by many! But the answer is somewhat involved and depends on the type of business you wish to operate.

Should you operate as a solopreneur or a sole proprietor? Do you want to be fully remote or have a brick-and-mortar location to serve a specific community? Do you want to deal in products or services? If products…are they digital products or physical items?

Understanding the one-person business ideas you have in mind is the first step toward getting the ball rolling, and you'll need to consider a few options in order to determine the right angle.

how-to-start-a-solopreneur-business

What Business Can I Do Alone?

If you're the type who wants to make all of the decisions and truly curate your own entrepreneurial destiny, then you'll need some doable and proven one-person business ideas to spark the fire. So, here you go! Here are 30 solopreneur ideas that you can do on your own:

(Note: We've included approximate earnings ranges based on research and our own industry knowledge, but actual earnings will be different for everyone)

1. Freelance Writing Business

If you love to write and have a knack for arranging words into beautiful and actionable copy, you can create an entire business by writing content, email marketing campaigns, direct response, white papers, ad copy, technical manuals and more. This is the business of writing words that sell things.

Approximate Earnings: $100K-$250K/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote

2. Nostalgia Cocktail Mixers

Who doesn’t love a good dose of nostalgia alongside a well-crafted cocktail? Dive into the world of classic cocktail flavors and mixers and watch the magic happen. The best part? You don’t need to sell alcohol to make it big!

Approximate Earnings: $100K-$500K/year

Best Location(s): Anywhere alcohol is sold — so, almost everywhere

3. Luxury Branding

If you’ve got the eye for detail and the know-how of full-package holistic branding, then this solopreneur endeavor is for you! Providing quality and complete branding services to a seemingly endless stream of clients will have you set up for years to come.

Approximate Earnings: $200K+/year

Best Location(s): Anywhere — really. Branding can be done remotely, so choose a place that works best for you.

4. Automation Software

Are you a software developer? If so, we highly recommend developing an application that can help customers automate something in their life. If you can remove the need for a certain task that takes up precious time, there’s no question of success — you’ll have it.

Approximate Earnings: $200K-$3M+/year

Best Location(s): Tech cities such as Denver, Seattle and Phoenix

5. Sustainability Products

Millennials and Gen Z are increasingly environmentally conscious and like to purchase things that have a smaller environmental impact. By selling sustainable, eco-friendly products (either online or in a brick/mortar establishment), you can leverage success while caring for the planet.

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$200K/year

Best Location(s): Phoenix, Honolulu, Portland

6. Online Education and Coaching

If you have valuable, life-altering knowledge that you can share with the world, now is the time to do it! More and more people are leaning towards finding better education from online teachers and coaches. 

Approximate Earnings: $100K-$600K/year

Best Location(s): Anywhere, depending on your language abilities

7. Marketing Services

Nearly every business needs a solid marketing strategy, making the business of marketing highly lucrative. If you can generate leads and bring businesses a steady stream of customers, they’ll continue to pay over and over again.

Approximate Earnings: $150K-$750K/year

Best Location(s): Big cities such as New York, Chicago, Phoenix and Seattle

8. Web Development Services

Every business needs a website, and some of them need really advanced sites that have built-in automation, widgets, membership areas, ecommerce and more. Did you know many larger companies like Dropbox pay anywhere from $20,000 to $50,000 for their websites? Branching out from small local businesses can really jumpstart your earnings if you have the chops.

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$250K+/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote

9. Subscription Box Business

Every day more and more customers are paying for convenience delivered right to their door. Take advantage of the world of dropshipping and procure a custom subscription box for a niche market that provides an average profit margin of 40-60 percent.

Approximate Earnings: $100K-$250K+/year

Best Location(s): Bigger cities with on-demand delivery capacity

10. Domain Name Flippers

Yes, you can make flipping domain names your full-time job. It’s simple and with a little strategy and patience, you could be purchasing some lucrative domains that sell for an average of $2,000-$5,000 per name.

Approximate Earnings: $100K-$250K+/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote 

11. Selling Stickers

Did you know something as simple as selling stickers can earn you a six-figure income? Neither did we, but many are doing it. Most stickers sell for between $3-$5 — figure out what your cost per sticker is, and then it’s simply a numbers game. Order in bulk, and you could pay as low as 50 cents per sticker.

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$100K+/year

Best Location(s): Everywhere — who doesn’t love stickers?

12. Social Media Management Services

In case you hadn’t noticed, the entire world has become a digitally social place and businesses are jumping at every opportunity to show up on social media platforms. If you’re skilled at creating content, posting and interacting with customers, social media management is just the thing for you!

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$100K+/year

Best Location(s): San Francisco, Chicago, New York

13. Online Fitness Training

Providing custom fitness solutions no longer means you need to deliver in person, and with the wide range of potential clients, you don’t need to worry about competition. Certain fitness programs work better for different people, and the way you approach fitness might just be the right solution for your customers.

Approximate Earnings: $70K-$120K+/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote

14. Natural Skincare Products

Consumers are becoming increasingly mindful about the products that they’re putting in and on their bodies. This directly influences the type of skincare products they purchase and more and more are opting for natural and organic skincare solutions. Overall the global skincare industry is expected to hit $200 billion by 2026.

Approximate Earnings: $70K-$100K+/year

Best Location(s): New York, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Orlando

15. Influencer Marketing

This is one of those one-person business ideas that requires some existing clout, but if you've built a social media following on a platform such as Instagram or TikTok, you can earn a substantial solopreneur income simply by promoting other businesses. Ranging from micro to macro and beyond, influencer marketing produces an average ROI of 5:1 for your customers (that's $5 earned for every $1 they pay you!).

Approximate Earnings: $2,000-$20,000+ per promotion (you can do them as often as you want!)

Best Location(s): 100% remote

16. Personalized Beauty Products

Most consumers and buyers will probably agree — there’s nothing quite like receiving personalized products that were specially crafted for YOU. From personal shampoo companies to custom foundation companies and custom perfume companies, the opportunity to break into this multi-billion-dollar industry is endless. Most of these companies utilize the power of quizzes and consistent variables to formulate products that are genuinely unique to each customer, making them feel as special as they really are.

Approximate Earnings: $150K-$250K/year

Best Location(s): San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Chicago

17. Clothing/Fashion Subscription

Where do you go to shop when you really hate shopping? This question continues to crop up, and you might just have the solution. Create a business where members can input their measurements and receive customized outfits delivered regularly on a subscription basis, and you’ll have a lineup out the door (figuratively, of course).

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$100K+/year

Best Location(s): Bigger cities with on-demand delivery capacity

18. Handcrafted Soap (White Label)

The handcrafted soap industry has been booming for a while, and you too could operate a squeaky clean business by providing white label soap products to larger retailers — or sell your own branded soaps and create a massive following! Everybody needs soap, and more than ever, many are searching for more sustainably produced options that use natural ingredients.

Approximate Earnings: $60K-$120K/year

Best Location(s): Remote, as long as you can ship to a broad area

19. Soy/Coconut Wax Candle Business

Just about everyone loves candles — there’s no denying it — but no one really likes the ones that fill your home with soot. Stick with clean-burning waxes made from soy or coconut, and you’ll definitely succeed in this industry. Give customers the added bonus of customization, and you’ll be one of the best.

Approximate Earnings: $60K-$150K+/year

Best Location(s): Remote, as long as you can ship to a broad area

20. Custom Balloon Installations

Do you love decorating for parties, weddings and events but can’t get enough of them? Try making a career out of it! It’s not uncommon for companies to offer custom balloon installations such as fabulous arches and epic sculptures for special events. If you're creative, the opportunities for innovation are absolutely endless.

Approximate Earnings: $80K-$160K+/year

Best Location(s): New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Orlando

21. Graphic Design

Designing signs, graphics, vehicle wraps, store displays, flyers, brochures, business cards and more can earn you a decent income, especially if you're able to offer custom solutions for your clients. Wrap your own vehicle for some exposure and show the world what you're capable of!

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$150K+/year

Best Location(s): Larger cities have the advantage of more businesses, but even smaller towns have signage and graphic needs.

22. Book Illustration

Who does all of the pictures and designs for books? Illustrators! If you have a keen eye for creative inspiration, you can put your stylus to work by connecting with publishers and authors who want to adorn their pages with emotion and set the scene for boundless imagination.

Approximate Earnings: $60K-$140K+/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote

23. Landscaping and Yard Maintenance

It’s definitely a classic service, but it’s one that many people are willing to pay for. Most of us work hard all day and the last thing we want to do when we get home is more work. Offer customers access to year-round services such as lawn and garden maintenance as well as snow removal to keep the cash coming in.

Approximate Earnings: $60K-$120K+/year

Best Location(s): Colorado, Arizona, Florida, Hawaii

24. Garden/Small Farm/Homestead Coaching

Yup, it's a thing. For those looking to grow their own indoor/outdoor gardens or start a homestead, a coach to teach the steps of beginning and maintaining their gardens/homesteads is a worthy investment that helps them succeed. You can create training programs and even masterclass options for serious homesteaders!

Approximate Earnings: $80K-$200K+/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote

25. Accounting and Bookkeeping Services

If you're great at keeping records (and particularly if you have qualifications or education pertaining to accounting), you could start up a bookkeeping service for small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Additionally, you could purchase and offer software that enables your clients to scan and submit everything digitally so that you remain entirely remote.

Approximate Earnings: $120K-$250K+/year

Best Location(s): Remote if you like, or you could keep an office to meet with clients directly if there's non-digital paperwork involved.

26. Professional House-Sitting

House sitting is a bit of an unknown as far as one-person business ideas are concerned, but it is very much a viable solopreneur business. Those who travel frequently or for long periods and wish to ensure their home is kept safe and secure will pay appropriately for someone to keep house in their absence.

Approximate Earnings: $75K-$120K/year

Best Location(s): Higher-priced homes in New York, Florida, California, Texas and other such metropolises are more likely to require sitting while their owners are abroad.

27. Music Production

Mastering, remastering and producing new music is a job that many forget exists, but every song you hear has a music producer behind it. If you have the skills, equipment and software to create unique sounds, this could be one of the better solopreneur ideas for you.

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$130K+/year

Best Location(s): Remote, though cities such as New York, Nashville, Austin and Los Angeles are where many producers find their clientele.

28. Dance Studio

You don't have to be a dancer or dance instructor to own a dance studio and provide space to aspiring dancers. If there is a need in your local area, renting a space, providing some large mirrors, bars, sound systems and other elements and opening it up for instructors to rent is definitely a viable solopreneur venture.

Approximate Earnings: $100/hour per room

Best Location(s): Larger metropolitan areas such as New York, Las Vegas, Chicago and more

29. Travel Blogging/Vlogging

If you love to travel and tell others about your travels, you might have what it takes to be a travel blogger or vlogger. Capture surreal photos and videos of your escapades and work with travel companies, hotels and resorts to encourage more tourism for chosen areas around the world.

Approximate Earnings: $80K-$200K/year

Best Location(s): 100% remote from tourist destinations around the globe

30. Pet Clothing

There's a much larger market for it than you'd think! According to research by Fortune Business Insights, the pet clothing industry market size was over $5 BILLION in 2020! If you're good with a sewing machine and have a small pup by your side to try things on, you could establish yourself in this not-so-niche market with unique prints and accessories for beloved furry friends.

Approximate Earnings: $50K-$250K+/year (with crazy potential)

Best Location(s): 100% remote, but you'll need to be able to ship across the U.S. and potentially beyond

Solopreneur Pro Tips

  1. Utilize project management software to organize and delegate tasks within your business. This will streamline your processes and make it easier to stay ahead of the work.
  2. Don't skimp on branding! Dedicating a budget for marketing and branding will help you reach customers who truly appreciate and value your business.
  3. Unless your business is accounting, outsource your accounting and bookkeeping needs. You'll thank yourself later!

Getting Solopreneur Business Support

In business, going it alone can be fun, challenging, exciting and yes…stressful, but it is a highly rewarding experience that you'll never forget one way or the other. And even though you want to run the show yourself, it's essential to have a support system in place to help you navigate some of the tough stuff as you progress.

Your friends, family, spouse or others can be good resources for this support, and so can Incfile. Whether you've picked one of the one-person business ideas above or have something different in mind, Incfile can help you turn your solopreneur spark into a legitimate business that can operate for years to come.

Download our Start a Business Guide today to learn how you can get the process moving and turn those one-person business ideas into your own wonderful and successful reality.

Inspired? Download Our Complete Guide to Starting a Business With All the Tips You Need.

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