If you’re looking for a high-profit small business idea that takes zero experience, then selling print-on-demand through Etsy or Amazon is a great option. Let me introduce you to some of the best small business ideas that shoppers are searching for.
Thousands of hungry buyers search for products on Amazon and Etsy every single day. In this post, I teach you how to “piggy back” off these high-traffic searches and create a lucrative business model that lets you design, post, sit back, and let the sales roll in.
Below, I go over 5+ of the best low-cost business ideas with high profit that you can build. I also provide loads of helpful resources to make the process as easy as possible.
Let’s dive in and take a look at the small business ideas list…
Create a business selling a variety of print-on-demand products
Print-on-demand (POD) is a business model that allows you to create and sell custom-designed products without the need for inventory or big upfront expenses. If you’re a member of LHS, you’re likely familiar with the POD world. POD is one of the best small business ideas you can pursue. It’s also the best business to start with little money.
A few of the benefits of creating a POD business include the following:
Low startup costs
Unlike traditional retail businesses that require significant capital for inventory, a POD business requires minimal upfront investment.
No inventory worries
With POD, you don’t need to worry about storing, managing, or disposing of unsold products. Items are produced only when customers place orders.
Tons of creativity
If you have a knack for art and design, POD lets you bring your ideas to life on a wide range of products, including…
- coffee mugs
- shot glasses
- tote bags
- and tons more!
As your POD business grows, you can easily expand your product offerings and reach a broader audience.
When starting a print-on-demand business, you can cast a wide net, offering lots of different products in a variety of niches, or specific topics (e.g. dogs, sports, occupations, etc.). Or you can drill down and create a POD business with a specialized focus (e.g. a store that only sells products featuring designs about cats).
(I talk more about the second type further down.)
Use my master lists to create tons of new designs for your best small business ideas.
If you choose to cast a wide net, this is what I like to call the “throwing spaghetti at the wall” approach. You create a bunch of different designs and you put them on a bunch of different products to sell.
To help with this type of small business, you can check out my master lists. I use these to quickly create hundreds of new designs based on one design template.
The lists include a total of 21 unique categories. The categories are…
- Countries & Nationalities
- Dog Breeds
- Mixed Dog Breeds
- Cat Breeds
- Horse Breeds
- Reptiles & Amphibians
- Rabbit Breeds
- Mythological/Legendary Creatures
- Celestial Objects (Astronomy)
- World Leaders
These master lists can improve the flow of the design-creation process for your POD business. Just pick a category, create a design template, and plug in all the different items included in that category.
For example, if you create a design that mentions a specific hobby, such as SCUBA diving, you can use the hobbies list to find other hobbies to plug into the same design template.
Say the original design template was the following: “I love SCUBA diving.” You can take that same template — “I love _____” — and insert into it pretty much any other hobby on the list:
- “I love collecting stamps.”
- “I love knitting.”
- “I love cooking.”
- et cetera
Sell print-on-demand products on Amazon
My favorite platforms to sell my products are Amazon and Etsy. Using these two platforms is one of the best small business ideas you can have. I’ll talk about selling on Amazon first then dive into Etsy.
To sell POD products on Amazon, you need to sign up for an Amazon Seller Central account.
From there, follow the steps detailed in this guide from Amazon called “How to start selling on Amazon.” It walks you through the process of creating an online store step by step.
When you get the part about naming your Amazon store, try to come up with a name that’s universally appealing and easy to remember since you’re selling a variety of products. Some examples might include…
“Custom Creations Corner”
“All Occasion Creations”
To learn more tips about how to sell a variety of print-on-demand products on Amazon, check out these helpful resources:
Sell print-on-demand products on Etsy
To create an Etsy shop, visit Etsy’s website (www.etsy.com) and click “Register” to create an account.
Then, click here to access my post…
It goes everything everything you need to know about setting up a successful Etsy shop.
When it comes to giving your Etsy shop a name, try to do the same as what I talked about with your Amazon store. Create a name that’s catchy but not overly specific. Here are some more examples:
“Gifts Unleashed Studio”
“Gifts To Cherish”
“Printed Joy Emporium”
“Custom Printed Treasures”
To learn more about selling a variety of POD products on Etsy, click the links below:
Start one or more niche-specific POD small businesses
Above, I talked about the best small business ideas for starting a non-niche-specific print-on-demand business. Here, I’m going to dive into starting a niche-specific POD small business.
A niche-specific POD business focuses on one particular design topic instead of “throwing spaghetti at the wall.” For example, a niche-specific POD business might exclusively sell products featuring designs about dogs. This is a good niche because it’s specific without being too specific. There are tons of different dog breeds so you can still cast a wide net within your niche, and you aren’t too limited with your design options.
Here are some tips for coming up with a winning niche for your small business:
Think about what you’re passionate about.
One of the easiest ways to come up with a great niche is to think about your passions and interests. What topics do you find interesting? What makes you smile or laugh? For example…
- Arts and crafts
Think about things you’re passionate about and how you could turn those passions into products and designs.
Look at what’s trending,
Another great strategy is to research the current trends in the market. Look for products that are in demand but not oversaturated. This can help you identify potential gaps in the market that your shop could fill.
Consider your target audience.
In other words, think about who your potential customers are. Consider factors like age, gender, interests, and lifestyle. Understanding who your audience is helps you tailor your products more effectively.
Sell niche-specific print-on-demand products on Amazon.
Both Amazon and Etsy are great platforms to use to sell niche-specific print-on-demand products as well.
To get started on Amazon, you follow the same steps as before. But this time, when naming your store, think of a name that specifically pertains to your chosen niche. For example, if your niche is dogs, your shop name could be…
“Dog Gifts Here”
“We Love Dog Gifts”
For niche-specific stores, it’s a good idea to research keywords related to your niche. So you can have those ready to add to your products’ titles, descriptions, et cetera. Some great keyword-research tools include the following:
You can also use Amazon’s search bar to quickly find relevant keywords.
Sell niche-specific print-on-demand products on Etsy
The same advice applies to a niche-specific Etsy shop as it does to a niche-specific Amazon store. One extra keyword tool you can use to find good keywords specifically for Etsy is Erank. Plus, you can use Etsy’s search bar:
Set up a product-specific POD store (e.g. candles or ornaments)
In addition to setting up a niche-specific POD store, you can also create a product-specific store. This type of small business sells exclusively one type of product with a variety of different designs. For example, you could create a store that sells nothing but candles or Christmas ornaments.
You can create this type of POD store on both Amazon and Etsy, and you’d go about doing that the same way as previously discussed.
Creating a product-specific small business has several advantages:
By concentrating on a specific product or product category, you can cater to a targeted audience interested in that particular item. This focus helps you better understand your customers’ needs and preferences, making it easier to create designs that resonate with them.
With a product-specific online business, you can optimize your storefront for specific keywords related to that product. This will make it easier for potential customers to find your store through searches.
In some cases, product-specific stores have less competition compared to stores that sell a range of products. This can make it easier for your store to rank higher in search results and gain visibility.
If you’d like to create a product-specific store that focuses on either candles or Christmas ornaments, you can check out my courses:
Create a small business selling AI-generated stickers
Stickers are a super fun product. They present a unique business idea, and AI makes their creation super easy. If you’re unfamiliar with AI, it stands for artificial intelligence and refers to the simulation of human intelligence in computer systems or machines. AI encompasses a range of technologies and techniques that enable machines to perform tasks that typically require human intelligence. And this includes sticker creation.
You can use an AI tool like Midjourney to create your stickers. With Midjourney, you can create images based on text prompts in a matter of seconds. Then, you can sell these AI-generated stickers in your small business.
To learn more about how to use Midjourney to create a profitable print on demand sticker business, check out my Low Hanging AI bootcamp.
Build a small business selling printable, downloadable items
So far, I’ve only covered physical print-on-demand products. But another one of the best small business ideas is selling printable, downloadable items. Printable items include things like the following:
- printable art
- planners and organizers
- educational resources
- digital invitations
- downloadable greeting cards
I recently made a post going over 50 insanely good digital products. You can check it out here.
You can create a printable shop on Etsy. And you would build that shop the same way you would build a shop selling physical items. You would just want your shop’s name to reflect something about the digital nature of your items. You also want to be very clear in your products’ descriptions that customers are getting digital items ONLY; there is no physical product. They have to print the items themselves.
To create printable downloadable items, I highly recommend using Canva. It’s super easy to use, very intuitive, and it has a free version. You can learn more about the process of selling printable items here. Additionally, you can check out my course Printable Profits.
…Do you want to get started selling mugs on Etsy and Amazon with ZERO design skills or experience needed? If so, watch my free webinar today and learn how you can create your very own passive income business at home: Here’s the link: https://rachelrofe.com/StartLHSTraining
I hope you find this post useful, especially if you’ve ever thought, “I want to start a business but have no ideas.” If you have any other suggestions for the best small business ideas, leave a comment below!
If you loved this post, check out five articles related to the best small business ideas by clicking the links below:
- How to set up your Etsy account and start earning sales fast
- Everything you need to win at selling print-on-demand with Etsy and Amazon
- 12 Hacks to help you sell more Amazon print-on-demand products
- How to get more sales on Amazon (even if you’ve had a slow start)
- Everything you need to win at selling print-on-demand with Etsy and Amazon