The 48 Best Business Ideas In Costa Rica [2024]

Updated: June 21st, 2022

Interested in starting a business in Costa Rica in 2024?

We put together 48 of the best businesses you can start in Costa Rica today.

In this list of ideas, you can find:

  • Home-based businesses to start in Costa Rica
  • Profitable online business ideas
  • Unique business opportunities for Costa Rica
  • Low investment business ideas (under $5k to start)
  • Easy businesses you can start in Costa Rica today

For each business idea, we’ll show you real-world examples, revenue expectations for each idea, + a step-by-step on how to start your small business in Costa Rica.

Here's the full list:

1. Start a moving service business

Moving service businesses pack, load, transport, unpack, clean, and carefully arrange items at the new location.

The demand for moving services is high among businesses, office owners, and residential customers.

As the owner of a moving truck business, your responsibility is to find potential customers (people who are moving home or office), hire a number of packers depending on the scope of work, and transport the items safely to the new location.

How much you can make: $1,500/month

How I Started A $1.5K/Month Side Business Helping People Relocate To Costa Rica

Send Me South helps people relocate to Costa Rica by providing customized services for residency and property purchasing, with clients from all over the world, counting the United States of America, Canada, England, Jordan, UAE, Belgium, and Spain.

About
Marcia started Send me South over 12 years ago
Revenue
Marcia grew the business to $1.5K/month
Read by 3,294 founders

2. Start an online advertising agency

An online advertising agency helps businesses promote their products or services on the internet.

To start this business on a budget, first learn the basics of digital marketing through free online resources.

Create a professional website and set up profiles on social media platforms to showcase your skills.

Build a portfolio by working on mock campaigns or offering discounted services to friends and family, and gradually market your services to attract clients.

With dedication, you can grow your agency over time.

How much you can make: $2,797 — $1,250,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $2,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 45 days (?)

How I Started A $120K/Month Online Course For Social Media Marketing Agencies

Iman Gadzhi made over $1.2M in profit within two years with his social media marketing agency and education company, where he teaches entrepreneurs how to start and scale a profitable SMMA, with over 45 of his students making over six figures with their SMMA, and over 300 students having quit their regular jobs.

About
Iman started Grow Your Agency almost 7 years ago
Revenue
Iman grew the business to $120K/month
Read by 14,390 founders

3. Start a real estate business

Are you a qualified architect with a broad range of knowledge in the real estate field? Starting a real estate business can be a profitable venture.

Real estate involves purchasing, selling, managing, or investing in land and buildings.

To become a successful real estate business owner, you must have finely honed visual awareness and a strong understanding of various building materials and structures.

How much you can make: $5,000 — $1,500,000/month

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

How I Started A $500K/Month Real Estate Investment Business

This case study is about T. C. Lewis & Co, a real estate investment and management firm that successfully diversified their approach to include sales, development, remodeling, and construction, with property management being the key to investor doors and organic growth.

About
T. started T. C. Lewis & Co. Real Estate over 18 years ago
Revenue
T. grew the business to $500K/month
Read by 11,414 founders

4. Start a web design & online marketing business

If you know about website design and marketing concepts then starting your own web design and online marketing business could be the perfect opportunity for you to do so.

The online marketing industry is the second largest industry in the United States and continues to grow. The online marketing industry is massive. It is estimated to grow by 30% annually, reaching $400B in the next four years.

How much you can make: $6,000 — $800,000/month

How I Started A $10K/Month Business Selling DIY Web Design And Marketing Courses

How Shannon Mattern built a DIY web design training business from scratch that now generates $10k/month in revenue through affiliate commissions and courses, without outside investment or debt.

About
Shannon started Web Designer Academy over 9 years ago
Revenue
Shannon grew the business to $42K/month
Costs
It cost Shannon $500 to start the business
Read by 20,080 founders

5. Start an affiliate marketing business

Are you looking for a side hustle to pay you a passive income? Affiliate marketing is one of those side hustles that will pay you well over the long term. It is a way to earn money online by promoting other companies' products and services. You will be paid a commission for each sale you make as an affiliate marketer.

To get started, learn how to find the right product and brand to partner with. For example, you may prefer becoming an affiliate marketer for an eCommerce store, partnering with a manufacturer, and marketing their products for a commission.

How much you can make: $500 — $773,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 55 days (?)

How I Built A $3.5K/Month Authority Site With A Full Time Job

Bar Games 101 is an authority website about classic bar games with over 200K monthly visitors and revenue over $4,000 for the month of August, achieved through consistent publishing of researched articles and outsourcing by the founder.

About
Patrick started AFH Media LLC about 9 years ago
Revenue
Patrick grew the business to $/month
Read by 30,160 founders

6. Start a freelancer platform

Freelancer platform is a place where people come with skills and services to offer and people come who need those skills and services. So we can say freelancer platforms are a marketplace for sellers and buyers of services and skills.

The freelancing industry is growing rapidly and it's becoming a popular career option for people who are "non-traditional" employees. The global Freelance Platforms market size is expected to reach $6.7B by the year 2025. While working on a full-time job, freelancers simultaneously work on a freelance career. The platforms available online help them to increase their business by attracting new clients.

With all of the businesses looking for help on their websites, it would be a good idea to start a freelancer platform. Freelance platforms do well because people have jobs that need to be done and businesses have the resources to pay for the job at hand.

How much you can make: $3,000 — $5,000,000/month

How long does it take to build: 80 days (?)

We Bootstrapped A Tech Talent Platform To $1.2M Sales In Our First Year

CloudDevs, a tech talent platform that sources and vets freelance tech talent and matches them with companies, has achieved $1 million in GMV in its first year, plans to achieve 100% growth year on year, and focuses on customer loyalty through its Net Promoter Score metric.

About
Rifzan started CloudDevs about 4 years ago
Revenue
Rifzan grew the business to $100K/month
Costs
It cost Rifzan $2500 to start the business
Read by 16,364 founders

7. Start a podcast

The podcast business involves creating and producing audio content that people can listen to online.

It’s a popular form of entertainment and information-sharing.

To start a podcast business on a budget, you'll need a few key steps.

First, choose a niche or topic that you're passionate about and that has an audience.

Next, get basic recording equipment like a microphone and headphones.

Then, find a free or affordable hosting platform to publish your episodes.

Finally, promote your podcast through social media, online communities, and word of mouth to build an audience and potentially attract sponsors or advertisers.

How much you can make: $400 — $1,020,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $2,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 2 hours/week

How I Started A Successful Podcast Production Company

A successful podcast production company that grew from one client making $15/hour to a team of 10 contractors producing over 30 shows per week with revenue of over $10k/mo, primarily through referrals and with a focus on providing high personal touch and being picky about working only with clients who are a good fit.

About
Jeremy started Counterweight Creative almost 8 years ago
Revenue
Jeremy grew the business to $16K/month
Read by 17,703 founders

8. Start an online video editing business

Video editors manage camera footage, dialogue, sound effects, graphics, and special effects to produce the final film or video product. To become an online video editor, you must have media production and communication knowledge and the ability to work with others.

To start a video editing business, you can outsource video editing skills from an experienced professional. Your role will be to pick video footage from the customers and upload them for the video editor to do the magic.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $208,000/month

How long does it take to build: 145 days (?)

How We Developed A $6K/Month Online Video Editing Software

VEED.IO, a London-based start-up co-founded by Sabba and her partner, offers a simple online video editing platform using batch job cloud architecture to help social media managers across the world auto subtitle, filter, rotate videos and much more, earning the company $5,300 MRR and the founders Ramen profitability within just a year of starting.

About
Sabba started VEED over 5 years ago
Revenue
Sabba grew the business to $6K/month
Read by 11,828 founders

9. Start a blog

In recent years, blogging has become a highly sought-after & lucrative Business. This location-independent business is a creative outlet to reach a broader audience and even work at any time. According to Optinmonster’s list of blogging statistics and facts:

  • Blogs have been rated as the 5th most trustworthy source of gathering online information.
  • 77% of internet users read blogs.
  • Each month, approximately 409 million people view more than 20 billion pages.

Originally blogging started as an online journal, but today it is a highly profitable career option. Many people are choosing blogging as their full-time career and are earning their bread and butter from this profession.

If you want to start blogging as a side hustle or as a full-time profession, choose a niche you will enjoy writing about and have a content strategy ready. Then, create a mailing list, and decide on a good blog posting routine to keep your audience engaged.

How much you can make: $200 — $160,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 37 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

How This 28-Year-Old Couple Quit Their Jobs And Make $20K/Month Running A Blog

Learn how one couple created a successful personal finance blog, The Savvy Couple, that now makes over $20,000 per month and has sold thousands of digital workbooks and courses, by focusing on purposeful content and optimizing their ROI with efficient time management.

About
Kelan started The Savvy Couple over 7 years ago
Revenue
Kelan grew the business to $20K/month
Costs
It cost Kelan $500 to start the business
Read by 27,348 founders

10. Start a mobile photography business

Want to start your own photography business? You're not alone. With the rise of social media and photo-sharing, blogging, and online retailing, it's never been easier to start making money behind your camera.

There are photographers shooting weddings, creating images for ad campaigns, freelancing for magazines, touring the world, taking photographs of destinations — the list is endless!

To start mobile photography in Costa Rica, research the target audience and determine which specialization area is more lucrative. Invest in high-quality, professional cameras, lenses, and a computer with professional software photo-editing software.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $500,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $5,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 200 days (?)

Embracing the Experience Economy with a $300K/mo Photo Booth Startup

Photobooth Supply Co. offers a profitable business opportunity through their sleek and portable photo booths, with up to 97% satisfaction rate and a focus on customer experience, in a fast-growing event industry where photo booths are exploding.

About
Brandon started Photobooth Supply Co. about 11 years ago
Revenue
Brandon grew the business to $500K/month
Read by 15,249 founders

11. Start a travel agency

Are you a passionate traveler with entrepreneurial skills? Then starting a travel agency can be a great career choice for you.

As a travel agency, you'll be responsible for linking travelers to providers of all the travel and tourism-related services such as accommodation, transportation, sightseeing, tour guides, local adventure, etc.

Starting an online travel agency is a lot easier than you might think. You'll need to perform market research, get a few necessary certifications (such as your IATA number), study competition, build a website, and do proper marketing.

To maximize earnings, negotiate discounts from the industry service providers, and charge travelers within the market rate.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $114,200,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

How I Started A $2K/Month Side Hustle Selling Vacations

Marissa Daniels runs a successful travel agency, Spread Your Wings Travel, that hit $100,000 in sales within a year of launch and provides payment plan options for its all-inclusive vacations, and she hopes to help 100 families supplement their income through the business.

About
Marissa started Spread Your Wings Travel Agency about 5 years ago
Revenue
Marissa grew the business to $7K/month
Costs
It cost Marissa $200 to start the business
Read by 17,168 founders

12. Create an online course

An online course business involves creating and selling digital classes teaching specialized skills or knowledge to subscribed students.

As an entrepreneurial course creator, you identify educational gaps around topics you have expertise in and develop engaging video lessons and supplementary materials.

With flexibility around self-paced or cohort-based structures, building a student base provides passive income potential.

For founders who enjoy information-sharing, launching an online course platform presents a lucrative way to monetize your instructional talents with small startup costs by serving eager lifelong learners seeking convenient access to emerging subjects.

How much you can make: $350 — $3,735,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,850 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

How This 28-Year-Old Couple Quit Their Jobs And Make $20K/Month Running A Blog

Learn how one couple created a successful personal finance blog, The Savvy Couple, that now makes over $20,000 per month and has sold thousands of digital workbooks and courses, by focusing on purposeful content and optimizing their ROI with efficient time management.

About
Kelan started The Savvy Couple over 7 years ago
Revenue
Kelan grew the business to $20K/month
Costs
It cost Kelan $500 to start the business
Read by 27,348 founders

13. Start a consulting business

Consulting businesses are booming, more so than ever before, and seeing year-over-year growth. With an accumulated value of about $250B, the global consulting industry is one of the biggest markets within the professional services sector.

If you want to start your own consulting business with valuable insights from industry experts, reading about their entrepreneurial journey will help you decide how you should go about it.

How much you can make: $100 — $2,500,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

How I Started A $45K/Month Cybersecurity Consulting Firm For Startups

Cybersecurity consulting firm Eden Data, launched in March 2020, scaled to four team members and generated over $45k MRR without large startup costs through their unique Virtual CISO offering, which outsources cybersecurity and compliance needs for a flat monthly price, rather than charging by the hour or for long-term commitments.

About
Taylor started Eden Data about 4 years ago
Revenue
Taylor grew the business to $230K/month
Read by 34,577 founders

14. Start a content writing company

Content writing involves writing, editing, and publishing content in a digital format. Examples of content include a blog post, product description, and podcast script—eBooks, press releases, or landing page content.

Becoming a content writer allows you to work as your boss. Therefore, you choose whatever working schedule suits you and take a manageable workload. Moreover, content writing helps you develop essential skills you may not obtain from regular writing.

Content writing is a highly-on-demand service, as companies compete for the online audience who often begin their shopping journey by searching for relevant and educative content online. Therefore, a content writing company is an excellent source of passive income.

To start a content writing company in Costa Rica, research the market and choose a suitable niche. Sketch a proper business plan and create a website. Hire a pool of talented writers and leverage modern technology to streamline operations.

How much you can make: $1,000 — $250,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $550 (?)

How long does it take to build: 30 days (?)

How Dani Mancini Transformed Her Freelance Gigs Into A SaaS Business

Scribly.io, a subscription-based copywriting service providing high quality content that helps businesses scale at roughly 50% of the cost of hiring in-house, created by Dani, a first-time entrepreneur who started with just a few hundred dollars worth of projects and with the help of three other writers; as of last month, Scribly.io topped $14K monthly revenue.

About
Dani started Scribly over 5 years ago
Revenue
Dani grew the business to $37K/month
Read by 12,578 founders

15. Start a SEO agency

An SEO agency is a company that provides search engine optimization services to businesses. The function of an SEO agency is to help businesses rank higher in search engines through organic or paid means.

SEO is a rapidly growing industry, with experts across all aspects of the field already making six-figure incomes and expecting to see these earnings grow dramatically over the next few years. Getting into SEO today, before it gets too saturated, will allow you to establish a strong base in a new career, with an excellent chance for success.

It’s easier than ever to start your SEO agency in Costa Rica. The tools are there, and the competition isn’t as stiff as it used to be. If you’re considering starting an SEO or digital marketing agency, it might be a good idea to learn how other digital agencies succeed.

How much you can make: $1,000 — $1,800,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

How I Started An SEO Agency For Lawyers Generating $3.6M/Year

Rankings.io is a hyper-focused SEO agency that helps elite personal injury law firms dominate first page rankings and was ranked #858 in the Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing companies in America for 2018, with a current revenue just under $300,000 per month, with plans for a record-breaking year.

About
Chris started Rankings.io about 11 years ago
Revenue
Chris grew the business to $700K/month
Read by 36,803 founders

16. Start a language translation service

Language translation services bridge the linguistic barriers, helping businesses reach a wider audience outside of a single language. A language translation job is an opportunity to cover a wide range of topics and meet people from different cultures.

To become a language translator in Costa Rica, master a second language and earn some experience so you become fluent in the second language.

How much you can make: $40,000 — $550,000/month

How long does it take to build: 70 days (?)

Buying A Translation Company And Growing It To $4M/Year

DEMAN Translations grew from 6 employees and 1.5 million euros in turnover in 2015 to 17 team members and 3.5 million euros in sales in 2020 after acquiring 12 other translation agencies, with a goal to reach 6 million euros this year and 10 million euros in 2022.

About
Cédric started DEMAN Übersetzungen almost 9 years ago
Revenue
Cédric grew the business to $550K/month
Costs
It cost Cédric $1250000 to start the business
Read by 7,774 founders

17. Start a voice over service

Voiceover artist is an auditory performer who uses their voice in scripted presentations. The role of a voiceover artist is only to be heard but not to be seen.

Working as a voiceover artist is an opportunity to choose the projects you enjoy engaging in. The role of a voiceover artist is also fun and can help you meet new people.

To become a voiceover artist in Costa Rica, start practicing aloud reading so you familiarize yourself with your sound. Then, create your recording studio where you can practice your voiceover skills. It would help if you had a quality microphone, professional recording software, a computer, and soundproofing materials.

How much you can make: $400 — $60,000/month

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

How I Started A $40K/Month Multilingual Voice Over Agency And Marketplace

Voice Crafters, a multilingual voice-over agency and marketplace founded by Mony Raanan, doubled their revenue to over $765,000 in 2022 with a bottom line of around 30% after transitioning to an online marketplace and carefully vetting their network of over 1,000 professional voice actors in more than 80 languages.

About
Mony started Voice Crafters over 15 years ago
Revenue
Mony grew the business to $60K/month
Costs
It cost Mony $50000 to start the business
Read by 6,133 founders

18. Start a travel agency

Are you a passionate traveler with entrepreneurial skills? Then starting a travel agency can be a great career choice for you.

As a travel agency, you'll be responsible for linking travelers to providers of all the travel and tourism-related services such as accommodation, transportation, sightseeing, tour guides, local adventure, etc.

Starting an online travel agency is a lot easier than you might think. You'll need to perform market research, get a few necessary certifications (such as your IATA number), study competition, build a website, and do proper marketing.

To maximize earnings, negotiate discounts from the industry service providers, and charge travelers within the market rate.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $114,200,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

How I Started A $2K/Month Side Hustle Selling Vacations

Marissa Daniels runs a successful travel agency, Spread Your Wings Travel, that hit $100,000 in sales within a year of launch and provides payment plan options for its all-inclusive vacations, and she hopes to help 100 families supplement their income through the business.

About
Marissa started Spread Your Wings Travel Agency about 5 years ago
Revenue
Marissa grew the business to $7K/month
Costs
It cost Marissa $200 to start the business
Read by 17,168 founders

19. Become a mobile personal trainer

Do you love helping people through their fitness journey? If you want a great side hustle to earn extra income, consider becoming a personal trainer.

The fitness trainer side hustle can be an adamant industry to earn good money. However, once you develop a reputation as a good trainer, you can get more clients through referrals. You need to register for the certification course to start offering personal trainer services in Costa Rica.

To attract your first clients, consider online advertising, and seek referrals from every customer.

How much you can make: $600 — $8,333,333/month

How long does it take to build: 532 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 4 hours/week

How I Started A $60K/Month Personal Training Company

Live Fit, a personal training company founded in 2011, grew from earning $80,000 in their first year with two trainers to earning over $760,000 in 2019 with 12 trainers and two locations, thanks to a focus on building trusting relationships and providing a variety of services to clients.

About
Chris started Live Fit about 13 years ago
Revenue
Chris grew the business to $60K/month
Costs
It cost Chris $50000 to start the business
Read by 8,029 founders

20. Start a mobile app development business

Mobile app development is the process of creating software applications that run on mobile devices. These apps can be used for a variety of purposes, including games, productivity, and social networking.

Starting a mobile app development business is a great way to enter the world of software development. This type of company is growing in popularity as businesses are looking for ways to reach their customers through mobile apps.

To start a mobile app development company, you need to have strong technical skills and be able to develop high-quality software. You should also have a good understanding of how to market and sell mobile apps

How much you can make: $7,500 — $2,333,333/month

How much does it cost to start: $7,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

How We Started A $82K/Month Custom iOS And Android Apps Development Agency

"We started a custom iOS and Android app development consultancy that now makes nearly seven-figures a year by landing clients like Great Clips and the USA CUP after building successful concept apps."

About
Rob started The Jed Mahonis Group about 12 years ago
Revenue
Rob grew the business to $80K/month
Costs
It cost Rob $500 to start the business
Read by 10,238 founders

21. Start a dropshipping business

Dropshipping is a business model where you sell products to customers without holding inventory.

Instead, when a customer makes a purchase, you buy the product from a third-party supplier, who then ships it directly to the customer.

To start a dropshipping business on a budget, choose a niche or category of products you want to sell.

Next, set up an online store using platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce. Then, find reliable suppliers from platforms like AliExpress, list their products on your store, and focus on marketing and customer service to grow your business.

Remember to carefully manage your expenses and monitor your profit margins to ensure profitability.

How much you can make: $6,000 — $3,000,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $6,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 10 hours/week

How I Started A $100K/Month Business Mentoring Dropshipping Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneur Kamil Sattar has developed multiple six-figure drop shipping businesses, and his company, e-commerce mentoring, specializes in helping others create their own successful companies, with favorite platforms including using Shopify and apps such as Loox reviews and SMSBump.

About
Kamil started E-commerce Mentoring about 7 years ago
Revenue
Kamil grew the business to $100K/month
Costs
It cost Kamil $1000 to start the business
Read by 24,319 founders

22. Build an analytics tool

Analytics tools are software or apps that help people to make data-driven decisions. They do this by providing users with the ability to access, visualize, and analyze the data.

If you have strong technical skills, then this could be a profitable business idea for you.

QlikView is one of the best Self-Service Business Intelligence, Data Visualization, and Data Analytics tool. In 2022, QlikView generates $750M in revenue.

With the rise of big data, more companies are realizing the importance of data and are looking for ways to make use of it.

Building an analytics tool is a great business idea because it's a tool that can be used by businesses of all sizes. Small businesses can use it to make better decisions about their operations, while larger businesses can use it to track and improve their performance.

How much you can make: $20 — $1,666,666/month

How much does it cost to start: $6,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

How Our Privacy Friendly Web Analytics Tool Reached $4K/Month Without Paid Ads

Plausible Analytics, a privacy-friendly web analytics tool, reached $4,557 MRR and 743 paying subscribers by focusing on content marketing and engaging relevant communities, rather than paid advertising, while positioning itself as a lightweight, cookie-free and affordable alternative to Google Analytics.

About
Marko started Plausible Analytics over 5 years ago
Revenue
Marko grew the business to $100K/month
Read by 9,655 founders

23. Start a home equipment business

There are some cool things about the home equipment industry that make it an appealing business. Starting a home equipment business isn't easy. To do it properly, you need the right tools and equipment. Starting a home equipment business will definitely improve your financial outlook but you need lots of capital to start one.

Having a successful home equipment business is largely dependent upon the training and experience of the owner. Starting a home equipment business can be ideal for people who want to start a business but don't want the hassle of managing a physical location.

How much you can make: $10,000 — $65,000/month

How long does it take to build: 650 days (?)

How This $65K/Month Step To Improve Car Roof Access Was One Of The Largest Shark Tank On-Air Deals

Moki Doorstep, a vehicle rooftop assistance step, raised $110,000 in sales and sold 3,000 units during their month-long Kickstarter campaign and licensed their product after immediate interest from a larger company, with their product now available in major retailers like REI, Dicks Sporting Goods, Pep-boys, and Duluth Trading Post.

About
Zachary started Moki Doorstep over 6 years ago
Revenue
Zachary grew the business to $65K/month
Read by 20,020 founders

24. Become a software developer

A software developer is a person who creates computer programs. They design, test, and oversee the creation of software for a variety of purposes including businesses, personal use, or social networking.

If you have strong technical skills and experience in programming, you can start a software development business. You should also have a good understanding of how the software works.

The average salary for software developers is $110,140. The best-paid 25 percent earn an annual income of up to 140K dollars while the lowest-paid workers make just under 84K dollars.

The recent trends in software development are moving towards mobile apps and cloud-based solutions. Businesses are providing a variety of programming languages and tools to create software that meets the client's needs.

Starting a software development company is the perfect way to explore in this exciting industry. This type of business is growing in popularity as businesses are looking for ways to offer their customers a convenient way to access their data and applications.

How much you can make: $1,700 — $465,583,333/month

How long does it take to build: 180 days (?)

How We Started A $350K/Month Business Developing Software Tools For Ecommerce Brands

SkyVerge, a software company, has grown rapidly with revenue of $350,000 per month, over 100,000 eCommerce customers, and a globally distributed team of 30 people, all through starting with consulting projects and building focused and solutions-based products, acquiring small products from other developers, and focusing largely on content marketing and providing excellent customer support.

About
Max started SkyVerge, Inc. about 11 years ago
Revenue
Max grew the business to $350K/month
Read by 35,853 founders

25. Become a virtual assistant

Virtual assistants support businesses, teams, or individuals by performing administrative tasks remotely. As businesses these days tend to outsource their tasks, the demand for virtual assistants is growing rapidly.

Becoming a virtual assistant is flexible, as you can choose a work schedule and location at your convenience. Many virtual assistants in Costa Rica have a dedicated home office where they work in a quiet and distraction-free environment.

To become a virtual assistant, identify a niche you like and undertake any training. Then, figure out how much to charge your customers and create an online presence where you can apply for jobs. As a virtual assistant, you can define your work schedule depending on your availability.

How much you can make: $1,000 — $1,000,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

On Starting A Business Training Virtual Assistants

Filipino Virtual Assistance by FVA Business Consultancy, founded by Julmar Grace Locsin, offers online and offline training to empower marketers, enable businesses, and equip freelancers which has trained 25,000 students from their 31 courses, has 16 coaches assigned from different territories, and fifteen in the FVA team for global digital leadership that will impact the world through digitalization, one life at a time.

Revenue
Julmar grew the business to $1K/month
Costs
It cost Julmar $500 to start the business
Read by 7,701 founders

26. Become a proofreader

Proofreading business is a service that helps customers review their written work and ensure it is ready for publication. Typically, a proofreader corrects grammatical errors and provides the written piece meets any relevant style guide.

As a proofreader, you can work online, allowing you to choose what time to work.

If you plan to start a professional proofreading business in Costa Rica, make sure you possess the following skills:

  • Have an excellent grasp of grammar
  • Ability to correct mistakenly capitalized words
  • Familiarity with the proper use of capitalization
  • Use spell-checkers to flag misspelled words

Proofreading is a great way to enhance content quality. With the increased use of written content marketing to reach a broader market, the demand for professional proofreaders has grown tremendously. Professional proofreaders earn an average of $12/hr. And $30/hr.

Therefore, consider proofreading as a business if you are looking for a great side hustle idea or simply looking for ways to increase your income.

How much you can make: $2,000/month

How I Added $2,000 To My Monthly Income Proofreading Blog Posts

A proofreader was able to build a consistent income of ~$2,000 per month from scratch with zero experience in the field, no expenses, and barely any upfront costs by targeting bloggers and content creators who want their content to be copy edited and proofread.

About
Lenny started The Blog Proofreader almost 8 years ago
Revenue
Lenny grew the business to $2K/month
Read by 14,273 founders

27. Start a telecommunications business

The telecommunication business involves the development, ownership, or operation of one or more telephone, telecommunications or information systems. Typically, telecom companies provide infrastructure to enable clients to transmit voice, video, and data.

To start a telecommunication business, you need telecommunication skills.

How much you can make: $430,000/month

How long does it take to build: 251 days (?)

How I Built A Wireless Carrier Company At 28 And Grew It To $430K/Monthly Revenue

This case study is about how Chaymeriyia Moncrief launched Tesix Wireless Network, a prepaid wireless carrier with around 7,000 mobile subscribers and an average monthly revenue of $430,000 from mobile subscriptions, box sells, and activations kits, targeting young adults and millennials who want lower phone services, zero fees, no contracts, and zero limits on their data by leveraging influencers, raising funds, and building an online presence.

About
Chaymeriyia started Tesix Wireless Network over 5 years ago
Revenue
Chaymeriyia grew the business to $430K/month
Costs
It cost Chaymeriyia $125000 to start the business
Read by 2,607 founders

28. Start a stock video business

Stock video is pre-filmed footage that can be purchased and used in various projects and films. Like stock photos, copyrighted stock videos cannot be used without permission and licensing from the rightful owner.

Businesses and filmmakers use licensed stock footage as they save money and hours, they would need to create original footage. Starting a stock video suitable for use in commercials and entertainment can be a great venture.

How much you can make: $10,000/month

How long does it take to build: 197 days (?)

I Built A $120K/Year Stock Animation And GIF Images Side Hustle

VideoPlasty, an affordable and easy-to-use platform for buying pre-made stock animation elements and GIF images, has attracted over 600,000 visitors since its launch, with over $100k in revenue in 2020 alone, thanks to free organic traffic from YouTube tutorials and optimized SEO.

About
Eduard started VideoPlasty over 7 years ago
Revenue
Eduard grew the business to $10K/month
Costs
It cost Eduard $50000 to start the business
Read by 3,576 founders

29. Start a social media management business

Similar to virtual assistants, social media managers offer various services, including but not limited to:

  • Developing a marketing strategy based on clients’ goals
  • Setting up social media accounts
  • Posting on behalf of their clients
  • Coming up with strategies for increasing client’s social media following
  • Marketing analysis.

To become a social media manager, know the various platforms and understand how they work so you can develop strategies that help clients reach their goals.

The beauty of working as a social media manager is that you can define your work schedule and choose what niches to work on.

How much you can make: $20,000 — $166,667/month

How much does it cost to start: $251 (?)

How long does it take to build: 3 days (?)

How I Started A $7.5K/Month Social Media Consulting And Training Business

A social media manager turned entrepreneur created a program that has brought in almost $100,000 in one year, designed to teach women how to run successful social media businesses in less than 30 days.  

About
Amanda started Social Media Manager Society over 3 years ago
Revenue
Amanda grew the business to $20K/month
Read by 6,665 founders

30. Start a content marketing agency

Content is the currency of the digital world. Today, more and more businesses need to work with writers and content marketers. If you want to get into these kinds of jobs, you should start a writers' or content marketing agency.

Worldwide content marketing industry revenue was estimated at roughly $66B in 2021. The source projected that it would increase to $76B in 2022 and that it would continue growing over the further years to reach $137B in 2026.

Content marketing will continue to grow in significance with the increased use of digital channels. Therefore, the demand for content marketers is projected to grow by 27% over the next few years.

How much you can make: $500 — $741,666/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,500 (?)

How long does it take to build: 45 days (?)

How I Started A $80K/Month Content Writing Business

How David Tile turned a freelance writing gig into an $80k/month business, discussing lessons learned through managing growing demands and maintaining a remote team operation.

About
David started Article-Writing Co about 13 years ago
Revenue
David grew the business to $125K/month
Read by 23,677 founders

31. Start a restaurant

If you love cooking and are passionate about entrepreneurship, starting a restaurant can be a fun and lucrative business.

To get started, choose a great location, and hire an excellent support team. You will need a chef to inspect the food and line cooks, waiters, and waitresses to serve the customers. No matter the restaurant type, you need great culinary and business skills to make your dream come true.

If you plan to open a restaurant in Costa Rica, gain insight from consumer preferences and focus on serving modern consumers what they need.

How much you can make: $48,333 — $61,650,000/month

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

Starting A $1.5M Healthy Meals Delivery Business

One Life Meals is a Toronto-based healthy meal delivery service that made 14,500 meals per month and generated $130k in monthly sales in 2018 through their one-on-one consultation, lean protein and seasonal veggies-based meals, and their focus on the client experience.

About
Andrei started One Life Meals over 11 years ago
Revenue
Andrei grew the business to $130K/month
Read by 20,386 founders

32. Start a virtual call center business

Do you enjoy helping people and talking on the phone? If you want a business that provides flexibility regarding working location and time, consider starting a virtual call center business.

A virtual call center can be a lucrative low capital and a work-from-home business. Here is a list of what you need to start a virtual call center business:

  • Select a specialty area/niche
  • Buy computers and call center software
  • Find clients
  • Focus on growing your business

When starting a virtual call center business, some clients may require you to use their defined call center software.

How much does it cost to start: $5,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 365 days (?)

33. Start a healthy food processing business

With the growing preference for healthy and functional food, starting a healthy food processing plant can be rewarding.

The advancements in the food processing industry, innovation in processing technology, and continuous growth in demand for processed food are some excellent reasons to consider opening a healthy food processing business.

To start a healthy food processing plant, find out a market gap, and research the demand. Understand customers changing tastes and focus on offering the best throughout.

How much you can make: $52,944/month

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

How I Healed My Injury With Bone Broth And Bootstrapped A $540K/Year Business

Bluebird Provisions Bone Broth is North America's fastest-growing bone broth brand, doing 49,000 per month and growing 50% YoY, with 5000% growth in customer base since starting, thanks to an SEO-focused strategy, email marketing, referrals, and Amazon.

About
Connor started Bluebird Provisions about 5 years ago
Revenue
Connor grew the business to $52.9K/month
Costs
It cost Connor $30000 to start the business
Read by 3,282 founders

34. Start a hotels business

If you are considering starting a hotel, then it is time to implement your plan. There are five key elements to understand if you want to succeed in this industry: location, size, budget, experience, and market demand.

Here are some tips to consider before forming a hotel:

  • Name your business
  • Decide on a marketing strategy
  • Start by renting out a room in your home.
  • Hire a business capital broker
  • Try Airbnb
  • Make a marketing plan
  • Offer complementary services

How much you can make: $15,000/month

How long does it take to build: 325 days (?)

I Created A $120K/Year Skincare Brand For Black Women Recommended By Beyoncé

SKNMUSE, a premium beauty brand dedicated to elevating the beauty experience for Black Women, has a 40% customer retention rate, achieved a 169% increase in revenue, and made $30,000 in Q1 alone.

About
Ezinne started SKNMUSE almost 4 years ago
Revenue
Ezinne grew the business to $15K/month
Costs
It cost Ezinne $1000 to start the business
Read by 3,246 founders

35. Start a pool business

How much you can make: $50,000 — $1,100,000/month

I Make $13.2M/Year Selling Concrete Countertops For DIY'ers

Concrete Countertop Solutions, a small but dedicated team that has grown from an idea to over $12M in revenue in 10 years, has succeeded by expanding into the swimming pool industry and investing in advertising, with their instructional videos and targeted social media campaigns contributing to their accelerated growth.

About
Ed started Concrete Countertop Solutions over 14 years ago
Revenue
Ed grew the business to $1.1M/month
Read by 5,722 founders

36. Start an internet privacy app

Internet privacy apps enable users to search the internet without worrying about getting tracked online.

Alarming cases of data breaches like Cambridge Analytica and Equifax, internet users are keen on protecting their privacy online.

To stay safe, internet users are using privacy applications, a trend that is creating business opportunities for entrepreneurs looking for the best App based business ideas.

To build an internet privacy application, research the most popular websites based on the user search frequency.

Then, build an application that is easy to use and fast so that the search results display almost instantly. Remember to add more features to the application to give the users a broader experience, increase interaction and keep the application engaged.

Before launching the beta version, please test it out and give users enough time to provide feedback. Market and launch the application.

How much you can make: $100 — $83,333/month

How long does it take to build: 272 days (?)

On Developing And Launching A Privacy-Focused App As A Solo Founder

Snap Search, an Android app that allows online searches without being tracked for data and privacy concerns created by founder Rajat from Bangalore, gained over 9,000 searches within the first two months of launch without any marketing costs and is planning for the development of an iOS version and expansion for additional payment methods.

About
Rajat started Snap Search almost 5 years ago
Revenue
Rajat grew the business to $100/month
Read by 5,764 founders

37. Start a seafood sales business

Starting a frozen food business specializing in seafood is a fantastic business venture.

The global demand for aquatic foods will double in the next few years.

Finfish, pelagic fish, cods, salmonids, crabs, shrimp, krill, prawns, and lobster are among the highly in-demand sea foods.

To start your frozen fish products business, conduct market research to understand the current industry trends. Focus on how each vendor performs and find out the highly in-demand products.

Then, decide to source your frozen seafood from suppliers, or you will do the food processing. Analyze the costs of both options to determine the most optimal. Finally, apply for the food handling permits and licenses, and begin marketing your frozen goods business.

How much you can make: $300,000/month

Cameron's Seafood: $175K Per Month Selling Maryland Crabs

Cameron's Seafood, the largest Maryland seafood company in the world, has leveraged an existing family-owned seafood business to ship Maryland Crabs and crab cakes to customers in all 50 states, making over $200,000 in July 2018 with an expected $2.4 million in first-year revenue without venture capital.

About
Cameron started Cameron's Seafood over 6 years ago
Revenue
Cameron grew the business to $300K/month
Read by 11,393 founders

38. Become an Uber driver

Becoming an uber driver can be a great way to earn additional income while still keeping a flexible schedule.

To become an uber drive, there are a few requirements:

  • Meet the minimum age to drive in your city
  • Have at least 1 year of driving experience in the U.S
  • Have an eligible 4-door vehicle
  • Have the proper documents and identification
  • Complete a screening online (reviews driving history, record, and criminal history).

To learn more about the requirements in your city, check out this page.

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

39. Become an author

Becoming an author is an exciting journey that involves creating and publishing written works, such as books, novels, or articles that reflect one’s ideas, stories, or expertise.

You can establish yourself through traditional publishing routes or self-publishing, utilizing your literary skills to connect with readers and potentially earn revenue from book sales.

Traditional publishing involves submitting a manuscript to a publishing house or literary agent who will review and decide if it is suitable for publication.

On the other hand, self-publishing gives authors complete control over the publishing process, allowing them to publish their work independently and market it on their own.

You can generate income through book sales, royalties, and opportunities such as speaking engagements or workshops.

How much you can make: $200 — $9,259,259/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 75 days (?)

How I Generate $10K/Month As An Indie Writer

This case study follows full-time thriller and action-adventure author Nick Thacker who earns between $10k to $20k per month from writing, predominantly through Amazon Kindle Unlimited sales, and goes in-depth into his self-publishing strategy which maximizes sales and minimizes costs, such as developing a mailing list and utilizing print-on-demand services.

About
Nick started Conundrum Publishing over 7 years ago
Revenue
Nick grew the business to $20K/month
Read by 9,742 founders

40. Start a youtube channel

For anyone looking to start a successful YouTube channel, there are plenty of YouTube channel success stories that can be used as inspiration and encouragement. In addition, YouTube has an established monetization system and boasts incredible popularity, making it a potential platform for revenue generation.

In this article, we'll look at different approaches you can use to help promote your channel and grow your viewers. While there's no quick and easy way to success, you can take these tips to build your own YouTube Channel Success story. If you love content creation, you can capitalize on YouTube's popularity to earn extra income.

If you want to join the Youtube partner program to monetize your channel, you will need to reach a minimum of 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 watch hours in the previous 12 months.

How much you can make: $800 — $4,500,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $750 (?)

How long does it take to build: 90 days (?)

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

How This Couple Makes $5K/Month Generating Content About Ways To Make Money Online

Learn how this entrepreneurial couple made $5-7k a month by helping others find legitimate work from home jobs and creative ways to make money online through their blog and YouTube channel, as well as offering two flagship products designed to help beginner freelancers and new bloggers accelerate growth.

About
Chhavi started Mrs Daaku Studio almost 6 years ago
Revenue
Chhavi grew the business to $5K/month
Costs
It cost Chhavi $500 to start the business
Read by 13,574 founders

41. Start an online retail store

Starting an online retail store is straightforward. All you need is a computer, a domain, and a web hosting service. Then, determine a niche for your online store, and conduct product research before listing products.

You can start your online store based on a drop shipping business model or list your self-made products in your online store.

How much you can make: $5,000 — $62,500,000/month

How long does it take to build: 51 days (?)

How I Turned A $5K Investment Into A $7.2M Apparel Brand

This case study follows the story of a successful online business that has made 7.2 million dollars in sales since 2012, with profits of around 30-45%, and the founders share insights on lessons learned and tools used.

About
Jonathan started On Cloud Faith almost 2 years ago
Revenue
Jonathan grew the business to $5K/month
Costs
It cost Jonathan $5000 to start the business
Read by 8,009 founders

42. Start a mobile veterinary service

A mobile veterinary service is just what it sounds like, your pet receives veterinary care in a car. A mobile unit is much cheaper than building a clinic.

As the number of pet owners is growing, there is also an increase in the number of pets that require check-ups and emergency services. If you are looking for a relatively low investment way to start a business, then starting a mobile veterinary service might be the right business for you.

How much you can make: $580,000 — $649,999,999/month

How We Started A Mobile Veterinary Service Serving Our Community

A mobile veterinarian built her business HousePaws on a community-based marketing approach, which helped her take the team from just herself to over 100 employees and more than 7 million dollars in revenue in less than 10 years.

About
Lisa started housepaws about 14 years ago
Revenue
Lisa grew the business to $580K/month
Read by 5,440 founders

43. Start a costume rental business

Costume rental businesses are one of the newest and fastest-growing industries. These businesses can be found in almost every city, town, and state across the United States. Although these costume rental businesses range in size, they all have one thing in common: they are a great businesses to own.

Costumes are not an everyday use but there are a lot of situations where people want to wear their favorite costumes for a given occasion. It's like people want to eat candy, salad, plates of seafood, and meat every once in a while. The same holds true for costumes and party rentals. A costume rental business also means no sewing and less stress.

44. Start a restaurant

If you love cooking and are passionate about entrepreneurship, starting a restaurant can be a fun and lucrative business.

To get started, choose a great location, and hire an excellent support team. You will need a chef to inspect the food and line cooks, waiters, and waitresses to serve the customers. No matter the restaurant type, you need great culinary and business skills to make your dream come true.

If you plan to open a restaurant in Costa Rica, gain insight from consumer preferences and focus on serving modern consumers what they need.

How much you can make: $48,333 — $61,650,000/month

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

Starting A $1.5M Healthy Meals Delivery Business

One Life Meals is a Toronto-based healthy meal delivery service that made 14,500 meals per month and generated $130k in monthly sales in 2018 through their one-on-one consultation, lean protein and seasonal veggies-based meals, and their focus on the client experience.

About
Andrei started One Life Meals over 11 years ago
Revenue
Andrei grew the business to $130K/month
Read by 20,386 founders

45. Start an e-book writing business

An eBook business is profitable and flexible, letting you start a business from anywhere, while it is a low-cost business that is easy to start. You can make a living self-publishing and selling eBooks online as long as you are ready to invest your time and money in it.

Anyone can start an eBooks business! Just choose a niche that interests the target audience, and ensure in-depth research.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $62,500/month

How much does it cost to start: $67 (?)

How long does it take to build: 120 days (?)

How We Started A $514K/Year Content Curation Agency With Just $35 [From India]

Content-Whale, a content curation agency, has achieved a Rs. 4 crore ($514k/year) turnover 4-5 years after being started with just Rs. 2500 ($35), and has a pool of more than 500 writers, aiming to become a market leader in the global content market.

About
Vaibhav started Content-Whale Private Limited almost 7 years ago
Revenue
Vaibhav grew the business to $62.5K/month
Costs
It cost Vaibhav $35 to start the business
Read by 5,106 founders

46. Start an email marketing business

Email marketing is a popular and effective way for businesses to reach their target audience and promote their products or services.

With the rise of the internet and the increasing use of email as a communication tool, starting an email marketing business can be a lucrative and rewarding venture.

An email marketing business involves creating and sending marketing emails to a list of subscribers. The emails can be newsletters, promotional messages, or other types of content designed to engage and convert the recipient into a customer. The business owner is responsible for building and maintaining the email list, creating the content, and sending the emails using specialized software.

To start an email marketing business, you must have a strong understanding of marketing principles and a good grasp of best practices. This includes creating compelling subject lines, segmenting your email list, and analyzing your campaigns’ results. You will also need to be proficient in email marketing software like Mailchimp or Constant Contact.

To run a successful email marketing business, you must clearly understand your target audience and what they are interested in. This will help you create relevant and engaging content that resonates with your subscribers and encourages them to take action. A solid call to action in your emails is crucial, whether it’s visiting your website, making a purchase, or signing up for a newsletter. Starting an email marketing business requires marketing skills, expertise, and a willingness to learn and improve continuously. The right strategies and tools can be a rewarding and successful way to reach your target audience and grow your business.

How much you can make: $1,500 — $8,333,333/month

How much does it cost to start: $1,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 60 days (?)

How I Started A $55K/Month Email Marketing Agency Specialized in Ecommerce

Boundless Labs is an email marketing agency for eCommerce brands that has generated over $25 million in email attributable revenue for their clients since launching 18 months ago and currently makes around $90K per month, with plans to reach $100K per month by the end of January 2020 through client referrals, strong relationships, and hard work.

About
Chase started Boundless Labs almost 6 years ago
Revenue
Chase grew the business to $8.3M/month
Read by 11,799 founders

47. Start a grocery store

A grocery store sells a wide variety of food products, fresh or packaged, and other household & personal care items. The grocery store industry is the largest retail channel that makes $682 billion in the United States.

To start a basic grocery store, you can expect to spend a minimum of $50,000. Ideally, the bigger expense would be the rent, equipment, labor cost, cash registers/POS systems, and software. Some of these are recurring monthly fees. However, the location, size of the store, competitors, and local customers will significantly impact the business. A new grocer should sell more items for a lower price to make a more significant profit.

A new grocer can also save costs by buying the items from local distributors. The distributor is the middleman between the manufacturer and the grocery store selling it. Once the store cost and location are decided, the next step is to obtain a seller license. In most states, a grocer's license is required to run a grocery store.

Thus an average grocery store has a profit margin of 3% to 5%. The profit rates depend on the store's location, size, and popularity. On average, a small to medium grocery store can make a profit of up to $300,000 annually if all the profit factors are considered.

Another way to make your business more profitable is to diversify your store and add amenities like a coffee shop or stocking up the front of the store with magazines, batteries, etc., as these items can cross a margin of up to 70%. As a rule of thumb, offering lower prices on higher purchases will ultimately win more customers and increase profitability.

48. Start a webinar hosting business

Are you an app builder looking for a profitable business? Consider building a webinar hosting platform.

Businesses host webinars as a tool for helping them convert leads into paying customers.

Therefore, starting your webinar hosting service could be a profitable business venture.

To attract customers, focus on building a robust webinar hosting service that provides the users with all features they need to host an interactive webinar. A webinar hosting service should offer custom solutions and support for all technical issues.

How much you can make: $2,000 — $897,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $4,000 (?)

How long does it take to build: 183 days (?)

How I Turned My Teenage Hobby Into A Profitable Static Web Hosting Service

Tiiny.Host is a web hosting company that's doubled its monthly recurring revenue every three months, amassing 40,000+ users by providing an easy-to-use hosting and file sharing solution, and built up its brand through SEO.

About
Elston started tiiny.host almost 5 years ago
Revenue
Elston grew the business to $2K/month
Costs
It cost Elston $100 to start the business
Read by 4,729 founders

meet the author
Pat Walls

I'm Pat Walls and I created Starter Story - a website dedicated to helping people start businesses. We interview entrepreneurs from around the world about how they started and grew their businesses.