How to Start a Business With Little Money in 2022

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How to Start a Business With Little Money in 2022

Jun 29, 2022
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About two in three people see no chance of personal finances this year. With inflation surging, gas prices skyrocketing, and belts tightening, people can struggle with getting the capital necessary to start a business. But if you are like many aspiring entrepreneurs, you still feel that drive.

Below, you’ll find a list of five business ideas you can start with almost no money. 

Five ways to start a business with little money

If you want to start a business with no money, below are five options you can start today:

  • Becoming an Amazon seller

  • Creating handmade items to sell

  • Becoming an event planner (organizer)

  • Offering house cleaning services

  • Becoming an online affiliate 

People who have less money will have to put in extra time. Many of these ways of making money can turn into long-term businesses.

Selling on Amazon

If you want to know how to sell something on Amazon, it’s easier than you might think. You don’t need a business, and individual selling plans are free. You just have to pay $0.99 when the item sells.

Two selling techniques you can use for low money are dropshipping and online arbitrage. Dropshipping is when you allow another company to handle fulfillment. Dropshipping is when you buy products from online stores to resell at a markup. 

In both cases, you don’t have to worry about high investment requirements and managing extensive inventories. You can also use analysis tools to find products with high-profit potential using online tools like AMZScout.

Amazon sellers make much money by trading their time instead of cash. You’ll find that to be a common theme for these business ideas. 

Selling Handmade Items

Globally, handicrafts (or handmade items) account for almost $700 billion annually. Much of this earnings potential comes from tourist towns. 

Regardless, handmade items are an excellent example of trading in effort when you don’t have money. The materials for many of these products are incredibly inexpensive as well.

For example, let’s say you wanted to get into leatherworking. Bonded leather (commonly used for small bags) costs up to $120 for something about the size of a briefcase. Many of these briefcases sell for several hundred dollars. 

Your returns could be intense if you have a talent in any craftwork. Here are a few examples of work you could pursue:

  • Handmade jewelry 

  • Handmade soap

  • Custom art

  • Candlemaking

  • Knitting 

  • Upholstery (furniture renovation)

The point is to find something you love doing and share it with the world. If you don’t have that yet, explore your options. 

Also, be sure to value your time on this. Set a per-cost rate that respects the hours you put into your stuff. Don’t tolerate people who want to undercut your profits. 

Becoming an Event Organizer

Event organizers (or planners) are highly motivated, organized individuals who weaponize this skill for profit. Good planners handle everything from county fairs to music festivals. 

Organizers have deep connections across multiple fronts to get things done. Often, you don’t work with your money; you work with someone else’s. 

Because organization and communication skills are always in demand, event organizers can make good money. You can start small by planning events for your local community group. Be sure to add these small events to your portfolio.

A degree will help bolster your ability to get a job in this field if you want. However, those who want to start a business with little money might find college hard to justify. 

You can overcome the lack of a college education by offering your services to existing event organizers. You can get on-the-job training by working with current organizers and taking on more responsibilities. Experience can help you overcome many obstacles.

House Cleaning Services

Houses always get dirty. Becoming a self-employed housekeeper will be in demand regardless of what city you go to. 

Your first clients as a house cleaning service can often be your friends and family. You can get some initial income to invest in your business through them. You can also ask to borrow their supplies (in exchange for a slight discount). 

Initial cleaning equipment purchases can be pretty cheap. Brooms, mops, and dusters often won’t cost more than $20 (for all of them). You’ll eventually be able to use these initial earnings to buy more equipment. 

Some of the more expensive equipment pieces include industrial vacuums and carpet shampooers. You can overcome these limitations by specializing in cleaning hardwood floors. You’ll want to educate yourself on the cleaning industry's best practices. 

Beginner-level marketing activities can also help you get off the ground. Social media pages are free, and business cards are cheap. If you do an excellent job with initial clients, use them for referrals to new homes.

Become an Affiliate 

An affiliate marketer is someone who sells products or services offered by other people. The most popular method to do so is through a blog, but there are numerous ways to advertise your affiliate program. 

The most successful affiliates present themselves as an expert in a field. Many affiliates focus on blogs, but there are several who use video or audio platforms to spread their wisdom. For example, Vacuum Wars compares different vacuums on their YouTube Channel. 

To become an affiliate, start by selecting a good affiliate program. Here are a few places you can do this:

  • ClickBank

  • The Amazon Affiliate Program

  • Fiverr

  • Elementor

  • BlueHost

  • GetResponse

There are many affiliate programs out there. However, you’ll want to pick your affiliate program based on a specific niche. 

A niche allows you to gather a target audience who trusts what you have to say. If you are an expert in weight loss, you don’t want to discuss fashion in the next blog. Keep this in mind when selecting the best affiliate niche. 


It’s 2022, and there is no reason for you not to pursue your dreams. Even if you have little (or no) money, you can replace that lack of capital investment with time investment. Hopefully, this guide gave you some ideas about where to start. Best of luck with your future business!

The opinions expressed in our published works are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the National Association for the Self-Employed or its members.

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