ExecutiveChronicles | Businesses you may start in college | Use the following business ideas to help you find your passion, match your interests to your work and achieve your career goals:
Tutoring can offer plenty of business opportunities, especially if you tutor specialty subjects and technical concepts. For instance, your tutoring business might focus on academic support in elementary school subjects or technical topics, depending on your knowledge and expertise with the subject. Remember that it’s more about teaching than doing homework for money, but you can go with options you like more. Here are several more ideas for a tutoring business:
- Core academic subjects in different levels
- Foreign languages at varying fluency levels
- Technical concepts like computer programming, software development or building databases in Oracle
- Specialized subjects like nursing electives, certification courses and test preparation
Coaching businesses provide support services to others in a variety of fields. You can work with small business teams as a professional coach or with individuals in a specific niche. As a coaching professional, you’ll help your clients set goals, develop action plans and use strategies that help them accomplish their objectives. Here are some examples of coaching business ideas to consider:
- Health and fitness, nutrition and dietetics coaching
- Career and professional coaching, skill development and professional improvement
- Business and leadership coaching, strategic planning, management and performance
Design can span a range of fields, from technology to textiles, so if you have a passion for creating visual work, a small business in design can be a successful career. Additionally, starting a small business in this field can also help you choose your major or another educational path. Here are several business ideas in design:
- Web design for both individual entrepreneurs and businesses
- Software development and design for clients, developing your own software products and custom applications
- Graphic design to create logos, website graphics and other visual design applications for businesses and brands
- Clothing and fashion design with innovative approaches like sustainable textile development and designing with renewable materials
- Interior design, drafting and design technology, interior architecture or industrial and product design
4. Grant writing
Grant writing is a highly specialized niche of writing where businesses and organizations work with a professional writer to create a proposal for a grant. Writing grant applications requires detailed explanations of how businesses will use grant funds and measure growth and progress toward goals. If you start this type of business, you’ll need expert knowledge of the grant application process, appropriate grant-awarding institutions and other niche-specific information to serve your clients. Consider some of the sectors you can offer grant writing services in:
- Grant writing for small businesses and startups applying for government funding
- Public and private educational institutions applying for academic and extracurricular funding
- Nonprofit organizations seeking grants for continuing and growing operations
A service-based business can allow you to meet diverse clients in your everyday work and build valuable skills you can transfer between career fields. Here are some ideas for service-based businesses you can start part-time while you’re still in college:
- Cleaning services for residential homes, office buildings and other properties
- Delivery services for meals, errands, laundry pickup and groceries
- Virtual assistant services for helping professionals organize and maintain files, records and appointment schedules
- Cooking, baking and catering services or personal chef services
- Cosmetology services for hair styling and nail care
- Pet grooming, pet sitting and dog walking services
- Landscaping, yard clean up and maintenance services
6. Social media marketing
Social media marketing helps businesses and entrepreneurs get their offerings in front of their desired audiences. Consider social media marketing if you’re experienced with the platforms your target customers use. You can provide social media management, create shareable content, measure audience engagement and develop strategies to help your clients achieve goals. Specializing your business in social media can also support your education if you plan to major in marketing or business.
7. Content marketing
Content marketing is another field that can support your development in business and marketing, and content marketing is another business idea that you can start right from your dorm room. If you’re passionate about creating content for readers online, consider blogging, writing ebooks, copywriting and other forms of writing to promote a product or service. As you grow your business, you can find more opportunities to create content for popular brands.
8. Editing and proofreading
If you have a deep knowledge of written communication, grammar and writing mechanics, an editing and proofreading business is another idea you can build. Focus your services on various media, like editing and proofreading college papers and reports, resumes and cover letters, blog articles, journals and other written materials. This business route may be of special appeal to those studying the language arts.
Consultants provide industry-specific expertise and advice to businesses and organizations for making improvements to business operations. Consultants guide businesses and individuals through setting goals, creating actionable plans and accomplishing objectives. If you start a consulting business, you can work with individuals and small organizations and develop your career in a specialized niche like college prep, professional and career consultation and even IT or technical consultation if you’re experienced in technical applications.
An e-commerce business is another option that’s easy to start from your dorm room or home office. With the variety of niches you can sell in, there are plenty of opportunities to create one or more e-commerce stores with unique brand offerings. Reselling items, drop shipping, selling your handmade items or selling supplies are a few examples of e-commerce offerings you can bring to your online business.