Posted on: December 1, 2020 |

The COVID-19 pandemic has many people working from home, or looking for ways to start working from home. If you’ve been laid off or unemployed for part of 2020, you may have wondered how you can start a business as well. Working from home is generally safer, and can help to reduce the spread of illness. Starting a business gives you more control and autonomy. Finding ways to work from home and start a business can give you all of these benefits. There are many ways to go about this. Here are a few.

13 Ways to Work From Home and Start a Business Safely in 2020

There are many ways to leverage your time, skills, passions and resources into a business. As with any business, it will take some time to grow, improve your skills, and learn how to manage. This might include creating a particular product, using a skill, or providing a service. Let’s take a closer look at the ways to work from home and start a business safely during COVID-19.

1. Vending Machine Owner

Vending machine sales have increased in 2020 as more customers prefer to reduce interpersonal contact. Many vending machines also provide a staple, like food or water, or an inexpensive luxury, like candies or chocolates, so this type of business also tends to keep steady sales during a recession. You can get started with this type of business with relatively low upfront costs, and you won’t need any special skills.

Social distance and market stability are both important to safety. Learn more about starting a recession-proof business.

2. Personal Chef

You don’t need to be a five-star chef or even have restaurant experience to be a personal chef. Many people look for a chef simply because they don’t have time to cook and clean up afterwards. To maintain social distancing, you can even cook at home, package your meals, and drop them off. You’ll want to pay close attention to local food safety regulations, and make sure you’re staying within the rules.

3. Home or Office Cleaner

Just like a personal chef, many people might also look for a home or office cleaner to help them save time. To maintain social distancing, it’s ideal to clean while the homeowner or office staff aren’t in the building. Some people might be uncomfortable with the situation, so you might encourage them to use home or office cameras, or even provide your own to put their mind at ease. You might also use a checklist to show everything you’ve done and demonstrate keen attention to detail.

4. Dog Walker or Caretaker

When pet owners have to go into work, go out of town, or they simply can’t take care of their pet at the time, they may need a bit of help. A number of websites, like Rover and Care.com can connect you with pet owners looking for dog walkers, pet sitters, or pet groomers. If you enjoy working with all types of animals and you have patience and experience, this can be an ideal way to mostly work from home and start a business.

5. Landscaper or Groundskeeper

If you have a green thumb and you like being outside, landscaping and groundskeeping may be a good business for you. Since you’ll be mostly working outside by yourself or with another worker, this is a good way to reduce your chances of contracting COVID-19. Some people may simply need assistance with regular maintenance, like lawn mowing and weeding. Others might be looking for garden redesigns, tree removal or bigger overhauls.

6. Artist

Art can encompass many things. Maybe you’re a talented oil painter, photographer, comic book artist, sculpture artist, or something completely different. Hone in on marketplaces focused on your artwork. Use hashtags and social media to spotlight your artwork to your audience. Showcase what makes your artwork unique, and emphasize the elements that your audience particularly enjoys. Consider offering commissions as well as selling your original pieces. Make your commission prices clear, and don’t take less than what your time and skill are worth.

7. Crafts

Just like artwork, crafts can encompass a wide variety of products. Maybe you’re talented at knitting or crocheting, tie-dye, handmade jewelry, candle-making, or something different. This can be a good way to work from home and start a business, but it’s also competitive. Consider how you can make your crafts stand out. Do you have a particular style or aesthetic? Maybe you use recycled or cruelty-free materials? Or maybe you put your cultural roots or heritage into your work. Be authentic and target a particular audience, instead of trying to appeal to everyone.

8. Bookkeeper

If you’re good with numbers and you have a high attention to detail, bookkeeping may be a good business for you. Maybe you’ve kept books for a business in the past, or you’ve taken some business or accounting courses. Many small and medium-sized businesses could use your help and your skillset.

9. Editor

Photo editing, music editing, copy editing, video editing—anything created also needs some editing. If you’re proficient in editing software and you know how to add the finishing touches to a product, showcase your skills as an editor.

10. Virtual Assistant

There are many names for this job. Maybe you’ve been an office manager, personal assistant, office assistant or secretary in the past. Or maybe you don’t have experience, but you have exceptional organizational skills, a pleasant phone manner, and the ability to multitask. With these skills, you can work from home and start your own business as a virtual assistant serving different offices or businesses

11. Tutor or Teacher

More kids and adults are learning from home than ever before. If you enjoy teaching others, you can explain concepts patiently, and you can construct courses and coursework, teaching or tutoring can be a good business for you. Consider knowledge that you have or something you’re good at. Teaching and tutoring goes beyond traditional courses like biology or calculus. You might teach a language you’re proficient in or a special skill that you have. Or you might teach a class on sales, marketing, creativity, or even interpersonal skills.

12. Social Media Manager

If you know how to gather followers, generate online interactions, and use different social media platforms effectively, you can work from home and start a business as a social media manager or influencer. As a social media manager, you’ll create and pitch content to a business, and manage comments, messages and interactions. As an influencer, you’ll use your own platform to sell or endorse a product.

13. Health Expert

Are you passionate about fitness and healthy eating? Or, do you have experience in rehabilitative medicine, medical weight loss, or personal training? Many people are struggling to eat healthy and stay in shape now more than ever. Your skills and experience may be perfect as an online nutritionist, personal trainer, or fitness coach. To be an effective teacher and coach, you’ll want to combine instructional videos, written checklists and ebooks, and one-on-one video chat sessions.

There are all types of ways to leverage your skills, work from home and start a business during COVID-19. To get started, first consider your skills and passions. It will be easier to start a business doing something you enjoy or something you’re good at. Then, consider your resources, including upfront investment money, technology, space, equipment and time. Finally, consider your target market—who needs and values your services or products most? Why? With this information, you’ll be able to start and position your new business most effectively.