Written by Sara Von Remus
New Year’s resolutions are hard. They are one of the few times a year that we share with others our expectations of ourselves, in an attempt to hold ourselves accountable for our ambitions. So this year, we’re going to help you.
Do you have a skill like photography, upholstery, pet grooming, or floral arranging? Many people successfully run these businesses in South Boston, mostly through word of mouth or through participation in local fairs and showcases.
However, there’s a world of opportunity out there for growing a small business beyond the 02127 – and it’s not as daunting as you may think. Below, we’ll share four ways you can start or grow a small business this year – and reach more customers in 2018!
Thumbtack provides a comprehensive, easy-to-use platform that allows you to showcase a portfolio of your work, regardless of the service you have to offer. They offer hundreds of profiles specific to best demonstrating your desired service. The service works by allowing users to submit requests for jobs, outlining the location, budget, and timeline. You are then given the option to bid on the job using Thumbtack credits (and they offer a new member discount). Bids vary in price depending on the payout of the job. In Massachusetts specifically, Thumbtack lists House Cleaning, Personal Training, Local Moving and Dog Training as services in highest demand.
Fiverr began as a platform that allowed users to offer a service for just $5 – but it’s evolved over the last year. The service now looks similar to Thumbtack, but allows users to offer a very specific service and set the price themselves outright, with no bidding process. Users will then contact you when they have interest in your “gig”. Examples of services offered include “I will create quality illustrations for your projects” or “I will draw a Christmas portrait of your pet.” Signing up and getting started is easy only takes a few minutes.
Drive for Lyft or Uber
These may seem obvious, but if you’re comfortable with the idea and your car is in reasonably good shape, they are an easy way to make money. An Earnest.com study reports that the average Lyft driver makes $377 per month, while the average Uber driver makes $364. In Boston, Uber drivers make above the national average per trip – but you probably weren’t surprised by that.
Poshmark, which functions like an online consignment store, is a clean, legitimate platform designed to help you be successful in cleaning out your closet. When you sign up for a profile, you are able to upload photos of items in your wardrobe, both new and used. Users can ask you questions about an item, and you can securely accept payment via the website. The Gray Asparagus details what makes a successful Poshmark profile, and how you can boost sales to make it a profitable use of your time.
Are you your own boss? We’d love to hear your tips and tricks (or maybe they’re a secret). Either way – best of luck to all of our local entrepreneurs in 2018!
Sara von Remus is a Southie transfer originally from CA with a passion for writing, cats, and raucous Irish music. She can be found most often at Murphy’s Law, usually after getting off work as a Hostess at the Broadway.