1.The Business of Helping Businesses
d 2017 be the year you launch your own business? If you’re considering becoming an entrepreneur, business-to-business (B2B) services might be right up your alley. Just like consumers, businesses require goods and services every day. Whether its media services, consulting, or tech implementation, many companies simply don’t have the in-house support to get these things done. That’s where B2B services come in, and operating in one of these spaces can pay big dividends. Here are 20 B2B ideas to consider for 2017.
Are you tech savvy? Well, many companies are not. As technology becomes more and more integral to small business, whether its simply a video surveillance system or the more high-tech implementation of things like machine-learning systems, your technological experience can pay off big time.
3.Hosting networking events.
A great side-hustle can be organizing and hosting networking events for other professionals in a given industry. Bringing people together under one roof is a great way to spur new business opportunities, and creating and facilitating these co-mingling spaces is a service that is in high demand among professionals. So, are you a social butterfly? Do you excel at throwing parties? Put those skills to work and host a series of B2B meet-ups! Entrepreneurs will often even pay you to display their products at the event.
4.Press release service.
Got a background in writing? Use your skills to help other businesses get publicity by starting a press release writing service. Market your services to small businesses that don’t have or can’t afford dedicated in-house publicists and offer to write press releases as needed. Make sure you research going rates for your industry and area so that you’re charging fairly, and take the time to develop a strong portfolio of your work — you’ll need this in order to impress prospective clients and grow your business.
More and more people seem to be shopping online lately, so it’s no surprise that many people are starting e-commerce businesses or adding an e-commerce component to their existing companies. If e-commerce is one of your skills or specialties, you can become an e-commerce consultant and offer other businesses advice and guidance on improving their websites, taking product photos, writing product copy, managing check-outs and customer mailing lists, and more.
Have a knack for planning parties and events? Consider starting a business to help other businesses plan and manage their company events. Events can include company holiday parties, galas, fundraisers, launch parties and more. If you can, try to team up with other local businesses like different venues, caterers, florists and more to offer discounts on rentals and services. It’s also a good idea to take photos of the events you plan and to create a portfolio to show to future customers.
7.Virtual assistant service.
As companies grow, it can be harder and harder to keep track of administrative duties. Virtual assistant (VA) services are a great way for businesses to lighten the load without hiring a full-time, in-house employee. If you enjoy doing administrative work, you can let other businesses outsource some of their tasks to you. And if you have experience in a certain field or niche, you can leverage that to find companies in need of your specific expertise.
You’ll need some extra space at home if you want to run this business out of your house, but with a well-organized basement or garage space, you can do it. E-commerce is a huge business, and it’s an especially appealing one for small business owners who can’t afford to rent a retail space. The problem, of course, is that packing and shipping all those orders can be a real hassle. Many e-commerce companies would like to outsource this function to a third party who can keep the inventory in stock and ship orders as they come in. There are not many companies that offer this service to small retailers, so you could be filling a huge gap in the B2B market.
Most small businesses don’t have an on-staff accountant, so the task of record keeping often falls to the business owner. A highly organized, trustworthy bookkeeper can really alleviate the stress of sorting through receipts and tax returns. You’ll most likely only need to put in one or two days a month for each client, depending on how many sales and expenses they have. Knowledge of QuickBooks is a plus, but not necessarily a requirement for this business.
Are you an expert on living green? Help other business owners make their offices more environmentally friendly by starting an eco-consulting service. These consultants evaluate homes and offices, and offer solutions to make them more environmentally friendly. This could mean advising a switch to energy-efficient appliances or simply implementing a recycling program. Become a certified eco-consultant to boost your credibility with potential clients.
Content is king on the web. Businesses use it to engage with customers and it helps their search engine rankings, too. But, what business owner has time to write a new blog post every day? A Web content company need only have one good writer (you) and a few good relationships with local small businesses. If it works out, you can add employees later.
12.Socially responsible public relations.
There are lots of PR firms out there, but as businesses become more specialized, so do their public relations needs. Socially responsible, fair trade, organic, local, B Corps and other kinds of businesses with a socially responsible bent need public relations firms that will market their story to a whole different audience and deliver a different kind of message. A PR firm that specializes in that kind of work will attract clients who know they need a specialist.
13.Business plan writer.
There are multitudes of budding entrepreneurs out there all struggling to write a business plan. The problem is that many just don’t have the experience necessary to put the document together. An entrepreneur with a background in business and good writing skills could start small and attract a few clients at a time.
14.Find your business idea.
Ready to figure out what business idea is best for you? Try our Business Idea Generator. Answer 21 “yes” or “no” questions and we’ll tell you the top five business ideas that might work for you. Click here to get started. Don’t worry, it will open in a new window and you won’t lose your place in this countdown.
15.Niche Web design.
Every company needs a website, right? But, finding a Web designer that understands their particular business, their customers and their competition isn’t as easy as one would think. Building a Web design business that focuses on one niche will help you corner the market in one or two particular industries.
Apps, apps and more apps. That’s all small businesses hear about. The fact is, though, that most truly small businesses have no idea how to create or deploy an app. There are lots of companies out there willing to do it for them, but most are probably out of their price range. A startup that can afford to offer the service for less would surely find a niche market.
Safety is another area that few small companies can afford to staff full-time. Yet, small businesses are forced to comply with increasingly complex and onerous safety regulations. A workplace safety consultant could provide his or her expertise without being on the payroll on a full-time basis.
18.Residential management company.
Ask anyone who owns a rental property and they’ll tell you it’s a lot of work. Unfortunately, the recession has turned a lot of homeowners who couldn’t sell their houses into unwitting landlords with no experience dealing with tenants or maintaining a rental property. If you are good with people and can manage difficult situations, a property management company would be a great way to get your feet wet in owning your own business.
19.Trade staffing agency.
There are all types of staffing agencies out there, but ask any contractor you know and you’ll find out it’s hard to find skilled trade laborers. While traditional headhunters generally focus on white-collar jobs, an employment agency that focused on building a database of qualified trade candidates would likely have lots of business.
20.Human resources outsourcing.
Most smaller companies don’t have the funds for a full-time human resources person, nor do they have time to wade through all the rules, regulations and insurance issues themselves. If you’ve got a background in HR, you could start working as a freelance HR person tomorrow.
Ever notice how your phone bill seems to creep up ever so slowly and before you know it, you’re paying $50 more a month than you agreed to? So does everyone else. The problem is, few people have time to go over their bills with a fine-tooth comb and call and argue with the provider. A cost cutter does this for businesses and can help them save thousands. Cost cutters need an eye for detail and a good sales pitch. Once you’ve proven your worth to a client, word of mouth will spread quickly.
Self-published books are all the rage among businesses trying to promote themselves online. But, really, how many small business owners are qualified to write an engaging book? That’s where your ghostwriting business comes in. Downloaded content will only continue to grow and so, therefore, will the need for people to write all those books.