6 Figure Business Ideas You Can Start TODAY

6 Figure Business Ideas You Can Start TODAY

Here’s how my first service business started…

Young Doug wants a CD player, then starts his first service business. Look at that thick mane of hair.

When I was 12 years old, I wanted a CD player so I asked my dad if I could get one.

“How will you buy the CDs if you get a player?” my dad asked.

“I don’t know,” I said.

My dad said, “Well come up with a plan, and we’ll see about getting a CD player.”

That night I sketched out some plans to cut grass around the neighborhood. I knew how to cut grass and people had lawns to cut.

My plan wasn’t good, but it was a plan, and at $20 per lawn I could cut ten lawns and make about $200.

The next day I walked up the street, pushing the family lawn mower, and starting ringing doorbells asking people if they needed their grass cut.

It was sloppy marketing, not targeted, and all my assumptions were wrong. Fast forward a few months, and I was passing out flyers and getting referrals from my existing customers.

I made tens of thousands of dollars over the years in middle and high school doing yard work and odd jobs.

If you want to make money faster, especially on the side, keep reading.

The Downside of Affiliate Marketing

I love affiliate marketing because it’s pretty much hands off once established, especially if you’re getting organic traffic from Google.

But it will take some time to build up your revenue if you’re getting traffic from Google. The first six months can be slow and may feel like you’re making progress like a turtle crossing a street.

So if you want to make money online faster, a service based business is a sure fire way to make it happen.

I’ll tell you about 7 ideas for services that you can get started with today. (Just like 12 year old Doug but with less manual labor…)

And they all have the potential to be 6 figure businesses, too.

Why don’t I go after these business ideas if they are so good?

  1. Limited time: I can only work on so many things, and I’ve found that if I work on fewer things at a time, I’m less stressed out.
  2. I like to spend time on mostly non-client work. I enjoy working on others things, not with clients. My personality is — hmmm, how do I say this diplomatically? Clients can beat you up, and you’re there to serve them, so you should work to keep them happy. So my personality is great for non-client work, so I don’t have to suppress my preferences.
  3. A service business requires a team to scale. I used to manage and build teams at my corporate job. It was fine, but I like the lone wolf approach with a lean team. Any of these ideas will work, and if you look to the future of what success is, you’ll probably need several people and some managers on the team. That’s fine, but I’d rather not have a team.

Examples

For each of the ideas, I’ll point out some examples of the business model. So you’ll see how other people do it in a real-life model.

Hitting $100k

I’ll also include some rough math for a price point and the number of customers you’d need to hit $100,000 of annual revenue. It’s going to be a wild ass guess with uninformed assumptions or mildly informed information.

And that’s how starting a business will be — make decisions with incomplete information. Over and over again.

When you see the estimates for the number of customers, you’ll understand my point above about needing a team. It’s a lot of work to provide value worth $100,000 per year.

Other Ideas

I’ll tell you about ways to come up with other ideas if these don’t match up with your skill set.

Doing the work

At the end, I’ll mention the general approach you can take if you’d like to outsource the work and service as the project manager, marketer, and account manager.


** Disclaimer: Some links on this page are affiliate links, so I get a commission if you make a purchase. If you do, thanks! It doesn’t cost anything extra but helps support my effort to create helpful content.

Content Service

People struggle to publish enough content if they write it themselves.

Other people struggle to hire freelance writers and work with them effectively.

If you can serve as a project manager and hire a team of writers, then you’ll be able to find and manage your team via Upwork.

You can use templates here for finding and testing good writers. You can read how I built a content team here, step by step.

Want to go deeper and stand out from the crowd?

FOCUS on a market, and I recommend a premium market where quality matters. This can also help build some Expertise, Authority, and Trust for the site.

  • Fitness related content where you only hire certified trainers.
  • Heath related content where you only hire Registered Nurses or Family Nurse Practitioner. See more certifications here.
  • Outdoor related content where you only hire special forces veterans or national park rangers.

You get the idea, and you can be a market of one if you niche down and offer something that no other service can offer. It will be harder to find the writers, but definitely possible, and because of the credentials, expertise, and qualifications, you’ll be able to charge a much higher rate.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

Charge an average of $350 per month for the content service, and you need about 24 customers total.

Most services have multiple packages so some customers may want the cheapest option and others the most expensive.

Guest Posting Service

People struggle to build links for their sites. The gold standard is white hat guest posting, and it’s especially difficult when you are getting started with niche or authority sites.

I bet many people reading this post have struggled with outreach — maybe even thinking that no blogger would accept a guest post from you. I felt exactly the same way until I tried and it was less scary than I expected.

There are a lot of moving pieces in a guest posting campaign. You have the option of taking a shotgun approach — blasting out dozens of emails every day — or a surgical approach — taking time to build a relationship with a blogger before pitching them.

You can hire outreach managers to do the heavy lifting of sending emails. However, my most successful campaigns were not skilled SEOs with preconceived notations about how to get guest posts. They were writers and content managers that finished a content sprint and were interested in doing different work.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

Let’s assume each customer will be a repeat buyer and will buy 10 guest posts throughout a year.

If you charge about $200 on average per guest post, then you need to have 50 customers to hit  $100k.

Migrate to HTTPS

I get questions about using SSL for sites so that the little padlock shows up next to your URL. You may see this as migrating from http to https.

For a skilled admin, this is a fast process that has exact steps. It probably only takes a couple of hours to do, probably less.

To an inexperienced website owner, it’s a minefield of confusion with consequences that can kill your Google rankings and traffic.

I managed to migrate 2 of my sites without impacting the rankings at all and not trashing the whole site. Thank you ManageWP backups and restores! The first time took about 6 hours, but the second migration only took about two hours after I knew the pitfalls to avoid.

You can figure out the process, so you know it well, then find sites that aren’t using SSL.

Reminder: If you try this out, you should know what you’re doing and make a backup of the site so you can restore everything if needed.

Examples

There weren’t many services that I could find focused solely on migration to SSL, but check out all the results on Fiverr.

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

This is a faster job normally, and you could complete a couple per day. However, that means you can’t charge as much per job.

You could charge $100 per job, but you’d need to have 84 customers each month.

So I highly recommend upselling other work like the next idea…

Improve Site Speed

Site speed is a factor for Google ranking and a clear way to improve the user experience for your site. It’s a simple business model where you can find sites, test their speed, then reach out to the business or webmaster to let them know you can improve the site speed.

Side Idea: Most of the time upgrading the hosting can speed up the site. You can recommend a new hosting company and earn an affiliate commission. Unsure of the idea? Check out a couple of companies that solely focus on site speed — the have hosting recommendations on the navigation menu.

Here is an example from WP Speed Fix.

Reminder: If you try this out, you should know what you’re doing and make a backup of the site so you can restore everything if needed.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

If the average customer paid about $230, then you’d need to have about 37 customers each month.

But you could stand to make about $50-$100 more for each customer if you earned an affiliate commission. On the low end, you could make six figures with about 30 customers per month.

Keyword Research

Here’s another business need where I get emails each week asking if I can do keyword research. A lot of people ask about Keyword Golden Ratio research packages specifically.

And I have absolutely no interest in doing that for people. Zero.

I give the KGR Calculator Sheet right here for people for free. But some people have a little trouble finding keywords.

One downside with this business model is how you deal with reselling the same keywords over and over again. It’s unethical in my opinion and one of the main reasons I don’t even look at this business.

Some companies, like Humanproof Designs, have a good protocol — they resell some packages a certain number of times and tell you upfront. They mainly deal with custom packages which are one of a kind.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

If each customer order paid about $150, then you’d need about 56 orders per month.

You’d need a good way to find the keywords and sort through all the data, but that’s how you’d be able to offer so much value.

Podcast Editing

This a one of those “scratch-your-own-itch” situations. (Aside: I basically scratch all of my own itches. I do love a back scratch, though…)

Everyone seems to have a podcast these days. Even my wife and I yielded to the pull to publish a podcast — please check it out Survive The 9 to 5. My wife took up the editing to learn how to do it, but there are many services that do this work for you.

With more and more podcasts coming online, it’s a great industry that’s growing. You can get started with free software, like Garageband or Audacity.

Want to add more value? Include show notes, links, and show art for each episode. For someone that wants to focus on the podcast and production side, that can save a couple of hours of work.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

Most companies have a monthly package, so that’s what I recommend ideally. If each customer averaged about $600 per month, then you’d be able to hit six figures with 14 customers.

Video Editing

Another “itch-your-scratch” idea…

YouTube is also exploding with content. People want to get started on YouTube, but they know editing can be a beast.

I spent many hours doing horrible editing work for my YouTube Channel. Then I hired a far more qualified editor, and my life got better. She’s a grad student studying filmmaking and knows how to edit well.

If you can bring some expertise to the table as a video editor, then you can help someone get started on YouTube. Additionally, if you put together a description for YouTube, you could charge even more.

Home Movie Editing

My friends and family have been impressed with my vacation videos that I publish as VLOGs on YouTube. It’s great when I tell them that I have a trusty editor to put it all together for me. I compile all the content, and she edits the whole mess in a day!

You could target people that want to share their home movies but don’t have the time. I have so many friends with a lot more money than time, but they don’t know how to hire a freelance video editor. If you could make it easier for them, then you could charge a premium.

Examples

Clients and Rates to Hit SIX Figures in Revenue

Like the podcast editing, you could charge a monthly retainer. If the average customer paid $700 per month, then you’d need just 12 customers.

If you tried to edit home movies, then you could put together a similar package or charge by the length of the raw video on a project basis.


Want Other Ideas?

These ideas are just the tip of the iceberg — ideas that are directly related to Affiliate Marketing and Niche Sites.

But you can head over to Upwork and Fiverr, then start browsing the categories to see what people are buying. You should be able to find a service that you have some skills with already.

The Gory Details

All these business ideas can be nurtured to a 6-Figure business, but not overnight.

The concepts and ideas are simple.

It’s all about the execution, not the complexity of the idea.

It’s not about having a new, novel idea. If you have a new idea, then it means you need to educate people on the idea.

I can’t get too deep into the gory details, but I should emphasize that you should get started slowly.

Don’t worry about figuring out how to scale until you need to. So that means don’t try to automate your process until you have an effective way to do things.

Remember these three tips:

  1. Start small. If you don’t have a platform, then develop your chops on a marketplace like Upwork and Fiverr. You can leverage your connections to get started.
  2. It will be harder than you expect.
  3. It will take longer than you think.

Outsourcing The Work

I mentioned that if you want to scale a service business, you’ll probably need to have a significant team.

Even starting from scratch, you could outsource most to all of the work. You’d need to handle the other work (marketing, hiring, managing, communicating with everyone), but you could outsource the work.

Here are two approaches to start:

  1. Recommended: You could sell the work, then do the work yourself as you’re getting started. It will give you first-hand experience in the process which is very important to understand how to optimize and improve the process. Then, hire freelancers to help you fulfill the work. Some of the jobs, like speeding up a WP site may require you to work with dozens of clients per month, so you have to have a team.
  2. You sell the work, then hire a freelancer to do the work. You could hire someone from Fiverr to do the actual work. The major downside is that you don’t have the understanding to improve the process effectively. This would be a good choice if you’re not skilled in the service (like speeding up the load time of a WP site), but you’re good at selling.

Over to YOU

Leave a comment and let me know:

  1. If you’re interested in starting a service business. If so, when are you going to go for it!
  2. If you’re like me and prefer not working on a service-based business.
  3. And if you have questions, ask away!

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