In these times, it's becoming increasingly difficult to get by or make ends meet with just one source of income. Thus, more and more people are investigating the possibilities of, and indeed, the idea of, starting their own extra-income businesses. Most of these part-time endeavors are started and operated from the comforts and privacy of these people's homes.
Most of these people are making the extra money they need - some have wisely and carefully built these extra income efforts into full-time, very profitable businesses - while some are just keeping busy, having fun, and enjoying life as never before. The important thing is that they are doing something other than wait for the government to give them a handout, to improve their lot in life - and you can do it too!
The fields of online products and services (information products, eBooks etc) mail order selling, multi-level marketing, and in-home party sales have never been more popular. If any of these kinds of extra-income-producing ideas appeal to you, then for sure, you owe it to yourself to check them out. But, these aren't the only fields of endeavor you can start and operate from home with little or no investment and learn as you go. An hour or so searching on Google will give you countless ideas.
The first thing you must do however, is some basic market research. Find out for yourself, first-hand, just how many people there are - particularly in your local area - who are interested in your proposed product or service, and would be willing to stand in line to pay money for it. This is known as defining your market and pin-pointing your customers. If after checking around, talking about your idea with a whole lot of people over a period of one to three months, you get the idea that these people would be paying customers, then your next effort should be directed toward the detailing of your business plan. The more precise and detailed you write out such a plan - covering all the bases relating to how you'll do everything that needs to be done, and when - the easier it's going to be for you to attain success. Such a plan should show your start-up investment needs, your advertising plan, your production costs as well as procedures, your sales program, and how your time will be allocated. To often, enthusiastic and ambitious entrepreneurs jump in on an extra project and suddenly find that the costs are beyond their abilities, and the time requirements more than they can meet. It pays to lay it all out on paper before you get involved, and the more detailed you can see everything before you start, the better your chances of success.
Assuming you've got your market targeted - you know who your customers are going to be and how you're going to reach them with your product or service offer; and you've got all your cost as well as time requirements itemized - the next thing is to set your plan in motion and start making money.
Here is the most important secret of all, relating to starting and building a profitable home-based business - Regardless of what kind of business you start, you must have the capital and the available time to sustain your business through the first six months of operation on the basis of not taking in any money. Most importantly, you must not count on receiving of spending any money coming in from your business, on yourself or for your bills, during those first six months. Any and all the income from your business during those first six months should be reinvested in your business in order for it to grow and reach your planned first year potential for it.
Best of luck!