We come across two groups of people when it comes to starting a business or a side hustle.
Firstly, some want to start a business or side hustle and have no ideas at all.
Secondly, some have too many ideas and don't know how to choose just one idea to focus on.
Which camp do you fit into? 🤔
For this post, we're going to give you practical answers for what to do if you fall into either scenario.
Let's start with the first one.
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I Want To Start a Business But Have No Ideas
Here are the tips we'd recommend if you want to start a business but have no ideas.
Tip 1: Decide your areas of interest
The first thing you need to do is to begin with your area of passion.
A passion is something that you are interested in. Simple.
What interests do you have? I normally say aim to write down about five passions or different things you're interested in.
e.g. Your interests (or passion) could be vegan food, baking bread, running, watching movies, personal finances, etc.
Tip 2: Figure out what you're good at
Next is talent. Here are the key questions:
- What are you good at?
- In your day job, what skills do you use?
- What skills do you use outside your day job?
Make a list 📝 of them by answering the questions above. Aim for at least five talents or skills that you have.
e.g. Your skills could be teaching, writing, coding, painting, social media.
Tip 3: Combine areas of passion and talent
It's time to combine your areas of interests with things that you're good at.
For example, I'm passionate about baking, but I'm good at using social media.
In my mind, a good starting point would be to bake and share the final baked goods on the social media.
This will create interest as people have an obsession with baking in this country.
If you can take people along the journey of baking, you can build an audience.
This could then lead to monetisation through brand sponsorships or even creating niche baking courses.
Another example is if you have a passion for vegan food and you have a talent for writing.
This could lead you to starting a blog in the food niche.
In fact, this is similar to how we start The Humble Penny, except I had no talent for writing lol.
I just wanted to do it to discover my creativity. Feel free to join our free blogging course here to learn.
Tip 4: Assess your ideas for demand
There is no point in coming up with a business or side hustle idea that no one is willing to pay you for because there is no demand for it.
So it's great to assess what you want to do for demand using easily accessible tools online.
For example, Google Trends is great for seeing how often people search for specific keywords related to a business idea you want to explore.
But the key thing I want to share with you is the sweet spot of choosing an idea at the intersection of passion, talent and demand.
If you've done this exercise and are stuck and can't find an idea, choose one from our list of 50 best side hustle ideas that can make you £1,000 or $1,000 per month.
Tip 5: Validate your business idea
To show your idea has potential for success, you next need to validate it.
One way of doing it is to create a mini version of whatever you're going to offer and see if people will pay you for it.
For example, if you were going to start a business baking cakes and teaching people how to do it, you can validate your idea by seeing if anyone will pay you for your cakes.
It could be that you baked for birthdays or special events to see if anyone would book you.
Another example is that if you're going to start a side hustle offering coaching services, you could create a waitlist for your services to see if anyone would sign up when you promote it.
To demonstration validation of your idea, you want a strong expression of interest or payment from a number of people.
Ideally, these people should not be your friends or family members.
Recommended: Free tool to create a waitlist
I Have Too Many Ideas And Can't Choose One
If you're that person who has too many ideas 😅 and can't choose one, here are five questions to walk through.
The answers to these questions will help you to narrow in on your business or side hustle idea and choose one.
Let's say that you have three ideas that you're struggling to choose one from:
- Idea 1: Baking
- Idea 2: Blogging
- Idea 3: Coaching
You're asking yourself, “how do I choose which idea to go with?”.
Here is how to do it. Our goal is to determine which idea will give you the most number of yes's.
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Question 1: How much money do you want?
So the first question is, how much money do you want to make from doing this thing?
Let's just say you want to make £3,000 or $3,000 per month.
For Idea one, can baking cakes make you £3000 / $3000 a month?
If the answer is no, be realistic and move on to the next idea.
Can starting a blog do it for you? It can definitely but it will take time to get there.
So we can maybe call that a, yes.
Can coach and do this? Absolutely. Great!
So you're now down to two potential ideas – Blogging and Coaching.
Question 2: How much effort do you want to put in?
Next question, how much effort do you want to put into the side hustles?
This is based on what you want to do, not what's required. Big distinction.
The effort you want to put it could be low, medium, or high effort.
Let's say you think to yourself:
“hmm, I just want to make the money with medium effort at most.”
Pose this question towards the side hustle ideas.
Can medium effort help you make the side hustle successful?
Yes, probably for baking. But it failed on the potential to make you the money you want.
Can medium effort help you make your blogging successful?
Yes, it can take only a couple of hours a week, maybe up to two to five hours.
Can medium effort help you make your coaching business successful as a side hustle? Yes.
We are aiming for what will give you the most amount of “Yes's” to try and hone in on an idea.
Question 3: How much time do you have available?
Your answer here could be I've only got two or three hours
a day a week.
The question then is, will two to three hours per week help you make baking a success?
The answer is no, it's not going to do it.
Will two hours a week that you've got available, make blogging successful?
No, because you probably need one to two hours per day to have one good-written blog post.
So that should make you start to question yourself further.
You might say “If I'm going to make this happen, I'm going to need more hours”.
Will, two hours a week help you with your coaching? Potentially.
See where we're going with this?
Question 4: Do you want it to become a full-time business?
This is a very important question. Do you want your cake idea to become a full business? Maybe not.
You probably like baking, but do you want to sit in the kitchen, baking the cake and taking customer customers orders? Maybe not.
Do you fancy the idea of making passive income? Your blogging will take a lot of effort.
But one day, it could become a business if you take it seriously, get help and learn it properly.
Yes, it might be what you want. Or perhaps not. You decide.
Next is, do you want to one day run a coaching practice?
Do you want to one day maybe earn income from group coaching which can be very lucrative?
The answer here may be, yes, given the low effort to income potential.
Question 5: Will you enjoy doing it?
This final question is by far the most important and most people ignore it in their quest to make more money.
Coaching could make you a lot of money but will you enjoy it? Yes or no?
Blogging can make you a lot of money but will you enjoy it? Yes or no?
Same for baking.
You can see what we've done there.
Although these scenarios are hypothetical, the answers you give will be based on the ideas you're considering for yourself.
Repeat the same five questions for your shortlist of ideas and tally up which idea gave you the most, yes, responses.
The goal is to get to choose one idea and then start the work of making it a reality 😀.
Hopefully, my approach has helped to get you to narrow in on the idea that's best suited to you.
There's so much more I could share with you about starting and making something of your business or side hustle.
Often think the best way in addition to doing all these things is to talk to somebody or have conversations with other people who are also on a similar journey.
Find a suitable community or even find someone you trust, like a good friend who you might be able to run some of your ideas through and help you answer the questions.
If you want to run your ideas by me for example, feel free to drop me a comment at the end of the post.
Alternatively, feel free to chat with me face-to-face by joining our membership community.
It's a space for people who aren't just thinking of side hustles or business ideas but taking steps to make them a reality.
We have these conversations every day at our 5 am Club, fortnightly at coaching calls, we'll have them daily in our private community and monthly in our masterminds.
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I'd love to hear from you in the comments, what are you currently struggling with when it comes to your side hustle? Choosing an idea? Monetising an idea? Comment below 🙂