This article is part of a larger series on Starting a Business.
A “mompreneur” is someone who takes on two jobs—as a mother and as a business owner. Many mompreneurs want to start a business that provides flexibility, and that can be done from home, like with an Etsy shop. Others want to start a business with minimal costs, such as a blogging site or iPhone photography.
Before becoming a mompreneur, you’ll want to register the business as a legal entity with the state in which it will do business. This will protect your personal finances if a lawsuit ever occurs against the business. Incfile is an online legal service that assists business owners in registering their business. Submit your information to IncFile, and it will handle the state paperwork. Register your business today using IncFile for free plus the cost of state fees.
Here are the top 14 business ideas for mompreneurs in 2020.
1. Local Digital Marketing Manager
Managing online marketing for local businesses is a great idea for mompreneurs because it’s flexible and doesn’t require a certification or formal education. For a small business to effectively do digital marketing, it needs an employee or a freelancer to come into the business to take photos and videos. Customers are craving authenticity. Authenticity can only be given by someone who can be physically present within the business, not in another city or state.
For example, Stories on social media are very popular, and they generally require an authenticity that can only be created in a business. Additionally, many small business owners are not great at finding time to take quality photos—they are too busy operating their business. That’s where you can come in as a digital marketer. It’s easy to visit the business during the day while the kids are at school. Take photos and videos, make social media posts, update the website, and send out marketing-related emails for the small business.
The cost to start a digital marketing business is minimal at less than $500. You’ll need physical marketing materials, such as business cards. You should also have your own personal website. A semi-professional headshot would add a nice touch to your personal website and social media pages—like LinkedIn. You can earn anywhere from $18 to more than $50 an hour as a digital marketing manager.
“For an online marketing business, you don’t need a lot of money to start. You need an online presence, such as a simple website or landing page and a social media platform or two. You should have a portfolio that you can showcase.
“In addition, having a way to accept payments and an email marketing service will be critical. Once you start to work with your clients and understand who you serve, you can upgrade your website, expand your marketing efforts, and start using paid advertising.”
—Karen Grill, Business Coach for Mompreneurs, Second Act Moms
2. Offer Freelance Services Online
An alternative to doing local marketing is selling services online to a worldwide market. This doesn’t have to be social media-related. It could also be coding, customer service, accounting, writing, and translation. Websites like Upwork and Fiverr connect freelancers with potential clients.
The costs to start a freelancing business are minimal. However, we recommend that you create a website for credibility. Many potential clients will find your profile on a freelancing website and then visit your personal website to learn more about your background and to determine if you’re a legitimate freelancer. DreamHost is a great beginner option to create a low-cost website for less than $5 per month.
A pro tip for becoming a freelancer is to create a video promoting your services. This will immediately separate you from 90% of the competition in your niche. If you have one of the latest smartphone models, you can create a decent quality video to present to potential clients. Try to record the video in one take, so no editing is required.
3. Launch an Online Course
If you have knowledge in a topic that others want to learn about, consider teaching them with an online course. Additionally, your online course can be mom-related. For example, Taking Cara Babies is a seven-figure brand that sells online courses specifically for helping parents get their babies to sleep.
There are a few different directions you can take when creating an online course. The easiest option is to create a course on the online platform Udemy.com. Udemy is free to use, and it promotes your course to its millions of students who frequent the site. The downside of Udemy is that the courses are low cost, about $20 per sale. Course creators only keep 50% on a sale. Udemy is also more geared toward learning a specific skill, such as coding or photo editing.
Another option is to use a platform like Teachable, which provides the course creator with the tools to create their own course. A downside with using Teachable is that the course creator has to direct interested potential customers to the website to purchase the course.
A huge benefit of using Teachable is that you can set whatever price for the course you would like. The basic Teachable plan costs $39 a month. However, most course creators choose the $99 per month plan, which provides additional features like course theme customization, quizzes, and a course completion certificate.
“There are many moms who have online course businesses about rather peculiar subjects, such as dog agility training, autism therapy, and growing herbs. These businesses are making a lot of money. For instance, the dog training course made the owner more than a million dollars with a single launch.”
—Cynthia Brown, Founder & Editor-in-Chief, Only Top Reviews
4. Become a Virtual Coach
A virtual coach is someone who meets with clients via video and helps them improve themselves in a particular area, such as life, career, business, wellness, or nutrition. The virtual coach meets regularly with their clients, often weekly or monthly.
The income potential varies depending on experience, demand, and the type of area in which you’re coaching. As an example, new coaches starting out in nutrition can charge anywhere from $40 to $75 an hour. As they become more experienced, they charge up to $175 an hour.
Advancements in technology make being a virtual coach more appealing. Zoom, a video conferencing software, provides free and unlimited one-to-one meetings. Concerning videoing yourself, many laptops come with a built-in camera, or you can use your smartphone camera. Our only purchase recommendation is to purchase a mic, which can cost up to $100. Don’t purchase the cheapest mic available; the sound quality will be poor.
5. Sell Your Creations on Etsy
Selling on Etsy is a great low-cost and flexible option for a mompreneur. A benefit of selling items on Etsy is that you don’t have to build an online store on your own website. Instead, you’ll use Etsy’s platform to create a well-organized store. Once your store is set up, you can build a follower base within Etsy, and they will be notified when you list new items.
Etsy is also a great way to test if an item will sell or not quickly. For example, if you notice that 200 people viewed your new item and none purchased, you may want to tweak the item or create something different.
The cost to get started is low. In addition to the cost of your item, Etsy charges a flat rate of 20 cents per item, plus a 3% transaction fee when your item sells. Additionally, if you want to have your items receive more exposure on Etsy, you can pay a monthly advertising fee. How much money you make on Etsy depending on the type of product you’re creating. Several of the top-performing Etsy stores have made millions of dollars each.
“If you are crafty, you can put up your beautiful creations on Etsy. Startup costs are minimal and will be the supplies you need. By selling on Etsy, you get great exposure and only pay some selling fees after you sell the item. Make sure you share your creations and process on other social platforms like Instagram and Facebook.”
—Vicky Lashenkno, Show Host, Mompreneur Show
6. Resell Items on eBay
Another flexible business idea is reselling items on eBay. Many mompreneurs visit garage sales and flea markets on the weekend to find low-priced items and sell them for a markup on eBay. It’s often easier to sell online than at a garage sale because you’re exposing the items to a worldwide market. We recommend learning an industry well like toys or musical instruments so that you can recognize a good deal and know that it will sell online.
Learning how to sell on eBay is a great way to make extra money with your old household items as well. Kids outgrow toys quickly, and eBay is a great place to resell them. The cost to sell on eBay varies depending on the item being sold. However, typically, it’s about 10% of the final sale price.
7. iPhone Photographer
Many people are calling the most recent iPhone more of a “smart camera” than “smartphone.” This is because of the advanced camera technology that is now included in smartphones. The cost for a new iPhone 11 ranges from $699 to $1,249. Additionally, you could opt for a no-interest, 24-month phone plan, which can cost between $29 to $52 per month.
Consider learning how to use all the technical camera features of the iPhone and be a photographer. This may look unprofessional because a paying customer may expect a large camera, so your work will have to speak for itself.
A great market to target as an iPhone photographer is small businesses. Typically, they cannot afford a professional photographer and don’t have the time and skills to take quality photos themselves. It would be an easy sell to offer to take photos on your iPhone for an affordable price. Earn anywhere from $20 to $100 an hour as an iPhone photographer.
8. Virtual Assistant
A virtual assistant (VA) is someone who assists busy professionals with online tasks, such as reading and replying to email, answering customer service emails, appointment scheduling, and making travel arrangements. These are all tasks that can be done at home and while the kids are napping or sleeping.
The costs you may incur to become a VA are a computer and internet access. We recommend that you create a website to separate yourself from the competition. On that website, you’ll want to list your skills and include testimonials from people who you’ve done similar VA tasks for in the past. Earn anywhere from $12 to $25 an hour as a virtual assistant. Upwork is a great website to find VA work where you can open your skills up to professionals all around the world.
“Every stay-at-home mom has what it takes to become a virtual assistant. Moms know how to keep things organized, manage other people’s lives, and still find a way to put out the multiple fires that come our way. So, why not put the skills of being a mom to help someone else grow or run their business? As a virtual assistant, you have the flexibility of when and/or where you work. Once you find a “routine” that works for you, nothing in the world can stop you from being peaceful and productive all at the same time.”
—Ebone Campbell, Owner, PurposedPreneur
9. Consult Clients
If you gained industry experience before becoming a mom, consider consulting people or businesses who need your expertise. For example, if you worked in the restaurant industry and understand how to operate a restaurant successfully, consider selling consulting services to soon-to-be restaurant owners or those looking to improve their restaurant’s efficiencies.
A big challenge of becoming a paid consultant is finding customers. Many successful consultants have industry connections and network to find clients. If you’re starting with a small network, consider creating content to position yourself as an expert.
One hack to becoming an expert is to write a book. The book doesn’t have to be lengthy—100 pages are enough. You can publish it yourself through self-publishing a website like Kindle Direct Publishing, which publishes an e-book for free. Other options to position yourself as an expert are to create a YouTube channel on which you can provide free advice or build a social media presence on a website like LinkedIn.
Regardless of what self-promotion path you take, you need a website to establish credibility fully. Consider building a WordPress website with DreamHost, which walks you step-by-step through getting a website up and running. You can earn from $75 to more than $200 an hour as a consultant.
10. Personal Training
If you’re into fitness, consider personal training. This is a great low-cost business idea for moms. You may want to specialize in pregnancy training or postnatal training to appeal directly to a specific client base. You can start personal training in public areas, such as parks or at the beach. If there aren’t quality public areas at which you can train, consider renting out space in a local gym.
The cost to become a personal trainer is minimal. Equipment can cost less than $100, and general liability insurance will be around $400 per year. Earn anywhere from $20 to more than $50 an hour as a personal trainer.
11. Become a Mom Blogger
Moms love to learn from other moms. If you like to write, consider blogging about your experiences as a mom. This is a terrific way to connect with other moms and build an online audience. To connect with an online audience quickly, we recommend blogging in a niche, such as cooking for kids, parenting, or reviewing kid-related products.
There are several ways to make money as a mommy blogger. The easiest way is to place ads on your website, like Google AdSense. Another way to make money is by recommending products and becoming an affiliate. A third way you can make money blogging is by selling your own products, such as an online course (see number three above).
“One of the best mompreneur business options that has the lowest barrier or entry is blogging. With a blog, you can share your passion, connect with like-minded readers all across the world, help others, and make money from home. With hard work and dedication, you will be able to grow your blog to a comfortable full-time income.
“Starting a blog is very inexpensive. The only investment that you need to make up front is for a domain name and hosting. If you want to do it as cheap as possible, you can start a blog for $50 to $100 easily.”
—McKinzie Bean, Blogger, Moms Make Cents
12. Online Influencer for Parents
Social media has provided an opportunity for parents to connect with other parents easily. If you don’t like to write and don’t see yourself blogging, consider creating videos to reach parents on YouTube. You can also create microcontent on Instagram to reach other mothers. Facebook groups are also popular for people with similar interests to connect and talk with each other.
There are several ways to make money as an online influencer. When you grow a following online, and that following trusts your recommendations, brands will pay you to promote products or services to that following. Additionally, you can become an affiliate for a product and receive a commission for every sale that comes through your unique link.
13. Residential Home Cleaning
If cleaning brings you joy, cleaning and tidying up homes is a great job to do while the kids are at school. During the day time, many clients work, and it’s easy to clean their homes. Residential home cleaning is a business in which one helpful client can fill up your schedule quickly by recommending you to their neighbors and friends. Once you have more clients than you can handle, consider hiring your first employee.
To get started with residential cleaning, you need to purchase the cleaning materials, which can cost less than $300. Additionally, you may want flyers and business cards to hand out at networking events and to give to clients. You should be able to purchase these for less than $200. As a residential cleaner, you can earn $25 to $50 per hour.
14. Sell Homemade Goodies
Selling homemade goodies is a superb job for a mompreneur because you can create them while your baby is napping or sleeping. Additionally, you can test out the products on your family and friends for immediate feedback and sell your goodies at farmers’ markets on the weekends. Also, make relationships with local vendors like restaurants and delis to increase sales.
If you’re too busy to attend events, consider setting up an online store where local customers can purchase your goodies and ship orders to them. Use a website like Shopify that has built-in ecommerce features you can use to sell your items online. The cost to use the Shopify platform is $29 per month.
Once your website is up and running, promote it with online marketing. Social media is a great way to essentially have your own reality show as a baker and as a mom. If you can entertain fans online, you can also sell your goodies to them.
“A great starting point for finding a side hustle or career for stay-at-home moms is to identify what you think you excel at and then cross-reference that belief with your family and friends. As we all know, we often don’t sugarcoat our thoughts among families as we would in the general public.
“You can make your own goodies, like homemade peanut butter, for instance. Ask for feedback from your friends and family as it can help you identify what you’re doing right and what you’re doing wrong.”
—Erika Peterson, Founder, Nerdy Nuts
Being a mom is a full-time job by itself. However, there have never been more home-based business ideas for moms to take advantage of. Technology advancements allow anyone to sell products and services to a worldwide audience. Additionally, potential customers are becoming more comfortable purchasing items and doing business online. Start small with your mompreneur business, and you can potentially grow it into a full-time business.
Before taking on any clients or customers, you need to register your mompreneur business as a legal business entity. This will protect your family’s financial assets if a lawsuit ever occurs against the business. Incfile is an online legal service that helps business owners register their business with the state. Get your business registered with IncFile for free plus state fees.