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The COVID-19 pandemic has forced many of us who’d usually be in an office environment to perform our regular jobs from home. For some, the ability to skip the commute, have more autonomy over their working hours, and spend more time with family or pursuing hobbies has been a revelation.
Many of these people are reluctant to return to their former work lives and have realised just how effectively and productively they can work from home. Whether they’re looking for an opportunity to convert their current profession into a home-based business or want to step away from corporate life to pursue a completely different career path, interest in running a business from home has surged.
Today’s technology supports us to work remotely, and many home business ideas can be launched with a minimum of capital – often just an internet connection and a computer.
If you’re considering starting a home business, read on for some pros and cons and a list of home business ideas that are relatively easy to set up.
What are some pros and cons of running a home-based business?
Using your home as your work HQ certainly offers some benefits – but there are also some less-than-positive aspects of running a business from home. Before you make the leap, consider these pros and cons of running a home-based business.
- Be your own boss
- Work flexible hours
- Spend less time commuting to work
- Enjoy low overhead costs compared to renting offsite space
- Benefit from potential tax deductions
- You won’t be paid for sick days or annual leave
- You’ll wear many hats – from IT support to accounting and customer service
- Your income usually isn’t guaranteed
- Many people find it easy to get distracted by non-work activities
- Working from home can be lonely
What are some ideas for potential home businesses?
1. Ecommerce store owner
Australians are shopping online more than ever before – and Square makes it easy to start selling online and grab a piece of the ecommerce pie. Our site builder helps you design and launch a free ecommerce website with a minimum of hassle.
2. Event planner
If you love party planning, a career as an online events planner could be perfect. You could specialise in kids’ birthdays, weddings or corporate events, or work with a handful of events venue to support them with their functions.
3. Interior designer
While interior designers have historically worked onsite, the rise of virtual working means that people are more prepared to work with experts remotely. As an interior designer working virtually, you’ll help clients create beautiful spaces that reflect their family and lifestyle via video – which means you can work from anywhere and with clients in any location.
4. Virtual assistant
Becoming a virtual assistant is a great choice if you’re someone who’s organised, can multi-task, and has excellent attention to detail. Virtual assistants offer a broad range of administrative services like data entry, calendar management, research, bookkeeping, social media management and customer support.
5. Home-based beauty salon
Whether your expertise is hairdressing, lashes or tanning, there’s plenty of scope to run your beauty business from home. Square solutions for Beauty businesses make it easy to run all aspects of your at-home salon – from online booking with Square Appointments to payment processing and inventory management.
6. Graphic designer
If you have an eye for design and experience with tools like Photoshop and Illustrator, you could launch a home-based business as a freelance graphic designer. Specialise in websites, social media assets or product packaging, or you could partner with a handful of companies and look after all their graphic design needs.
7. Social media manager
If you’re a social media pro, a career as a freelance social media manager could be an ideal opportunity to leverage and build on these skills. Choose your schedule, your clients, and the projects you work on. Again, you can choose to specialise by platform, marketing yourself as an Instagram or Facebook expert, or support a bunch of brands across their social channels.
8. Remote bookkeeper
Cloud accounting software like Xero and MYOB means that bookkeeping services are increasingly performed online. If you’re an accountant or bookkeeper who’d like to work from home, you can access your clients’ financial information in real-time using these platforms from anywhere in the world. You must be a registered BAS agent if you’re providing BAS and GST support.
9. App developer
With more than 3 million apps on Google Play and 2 million in the Apple App Store, app development is a lucrative job that can be done from anywhere. As a home-based app developer, you could create your own apps, contract to clients who need a specific app built, or do both.
If you’re a natural wordsmith with an internet connection, you could become an at-home copywriter. Copywriters write all sorts of content – from blogs to brochures, website copy, media releases, product packaging and more. Most copywriters specialise by industry sector or channel.
11. Translation service
If you’re fluent in more than one language and can translate from one language to another, working as a home-based translator could be an excellent fit for your skills. As a translator, you could help clients translate content from articles and other documents to websites, instruction manuals and more.
Running a business from home has several advantages – but it’s not all long lunches and working in your pyjamas. The best home business for you will depend on your skills and interests, your lifestyle, and what you’re looking to achieve by launching a home business – whether that’s world domination or simply a job that gives you better work-life balance.