Up and Coming Themes in the Small Business World


            Is half of the year over already?  It seems like just yesterday we were making New Year’s resolutions and recovering from the holidays!  Pretty soon it’ll be one of the busiest times of the year for consumers: fall.  Kicking off the new season with a new product or sale is a great way to get a jump start, and it’s never too early to start gearing up for your next big plan to grow your business.  Here are some hot business ideas that are really taking off right now.  If you already have a business, taking some cues from these businesses is beneficial for you to keep up with what’s drawing in consumers.  If you don’t already have a business but are considering starting one, maybe one of these ideas will spark your creative engine!


            1. Internet Instruction.  As people have continued to get busier and electronics have divided our attention in more ways, multitasking has become king.  Now, it’s not unusual for someone to be texting, talking on the phone, and working on the computer all at the same time.  All the while, the internet has been growing as a resource for all types of knowledge.  People look up almost everything on the internet, to the point where Google is an accepted verb.  One way to capitalise on the prevalence of multitasking and the internet is to provide “internet instruction.”  It could be anything from short Webinar to individual consulting to prolonged courses.  Any particular skill you have that you think other people will be interested in is a good place to start.  The benefit is two-fold, internet instruction allows people to learn whatever it is at their leisure and it costs you very little to start the business. 


            2. Online Assistant.  Similar to internet instruction, an online assistant interacts with people virtually but in a different capacity.  Most people don’t have personal assistants but yet almost everyone wishes they had one at one time or another.  An online assistant can provide the help needed without being around all the time, freeing up both you and your customer for other tasks.  Some typical jobs of an online assistant could be making travel arrangements, editing and/or translating writings, arranging party details, or even attending to children’s secondary school or college applications.  Again here, the use of the internet makes things infinitely easier when an e-mail sent off to an online assistant results in last minute travel plans made easy or 200 chairs delivered to a company function the next day.  The bonus here is the more work you to do, the better it gets for you.  People will always run into new tasks for which they need an extra set of hands to take care of the details and the relationships you build up with anyone you contact (ex. delivery companies) will allow you to give better information and deals.


            3. Freelancing.  One of the best ways to beat a down economy is by doing freelancing work.  Companies of all sizes are unwilling to take on new full-time employees at a time when steady business is uncertain but as the economy picks back up, more work will need to be done.  Freelancing is a great way to take advantage of these contract openings that can even last for months at a time.  The most jobs are located in the industries of graphic design, web design, and search engine optimization but almost any industry could use a little freelancing help.  The great thing about it too is that it offers you flexibility to continue looking for permanent positions or even while you start your own business, while providing a paycheck.  Freelancing also gives you the opportunity to further your resume and job experience while a permanent job is harder to come by.


            The business world and consumer climate are always changing tastes and preferences.  To help keep you current, these are some up and coming business trends that can be incorporated into your current business or a future endeavour.  Remember, it’s never too early to start planning your next great business strategy!      


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