The 36 Best Home-Based Businesses To Start In North Dakota [2021]

The 36 Best Home-Based Businesses To Start In North Dakota [2021]

Interested in starting a business in North Dakota in 2021?

We put together 36 of the best businesses you can start in North Dakota today.

For each business idea, we’ll show you real-world examples of how you can start your profitable, home-based small business in North Dakota.

Here's the full list:

1. Start a finance blog ($90K/year)

Alexis Schroeder from Colorado, USA started FITnancials over 8 years ago, a finance blog.

  • Location: Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $7,500/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

Hey! My name’s Alexis and I run a personal finance blog called Fitnancials. I teach millennial women how to manage their money, save & invest more, and earn extra money with side hustles.

I actually started my business back in 2013 as a fun hobby. Fitnancials was originally a health and fitness blog (as well as personal finance), but I ended up ditching the health portion altogether because it no longer resonated with me anymore. I wanted to be hyper-focused on finances.

I had zero intention of creating any income from Fitnancials. It was purely a passion project where I shared tips and tricks with my friends and family (because people were always asking me for weight loss tips since I had lost 60 pounds).

how-i-started-a-7-5k-month-blog-about-personal-finances

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Alexis Schroeder, on starting FITnancials ($7,500/month) full story ➜

2. Start a backpack line ($198K/year)

Kelly Belknap from Denver, Colorado, USA started Adventurist Backpack Co. over 3 years ago, a backpack line.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $16,500/ month
  • Starting Costs: $7,000
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0

My name is Kelly Belknap, and I co-founded Adventurist Backpack Co. along with my wife Matilda Sandstrom.

We design minimalist backpacks for travel, and for every backpack purchased, 25 meals are provided to families in need across the U.S. (We do this through our partner Feeding America, providing meals to over 200 food banks across the country.)

Our flagship product is our Adventurist Classic backpack, which is made as a daypack for travelers, hikers, students, and everyday use. It’s padded front/back for electronics and completely weather-resistant for any adventure - and also fits perfectly underneath the seat of an airplane. We have the Adventurist Classic available in 6 colors, and have 2 new designs on the way which will be available on our website starting at the end of August.

how-this-husband-wife-duo-started-a-backpack-brand-that-gives-back

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Kelly Belknap, on starting Adventurist Backpack Co. ($16,500/month) full story ➜

3. Become an it consultant ($25.2K/year)

Dan Khadem from Denver, Colorado, USA started Access Database Support over 9 years ago, an IT consultant.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $2,100/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

My everyone. My name is Dan Khadem. I’m from Denver, Colorado and have a wife and 2 kids. I might have the most interesting or unique story because I have two very opposite things going on in my life. For my first business, I started a database consulting service for small and medium-sized organizations. This is using my technical skills and is very much using the Type A side of my personality. On the other end of the spectrum I do commercial acting and modeling. This is essentially for advertising in the form of print ads and commercials.

I’ll start with my database consulting business since that’s what I started with and what I’ve been doing longer. I essentially help organizations manage and declutter their data. My full-time day job is a database programmer in medical research so I’ve taken this skillset and applied it towards helping small and medium-sized businesses and organizations tackle a data problem that is holding their business back.

Typically it’s an organization that is struggling with managing their data and need some help moving from disorganized spreadsheets to a clean and efficient database program. Other times it’s a business that needs a custom program to automate or support a task like managing their human resources, their clients or some sort of maintenance schedule that they need to run their business.

how-a-database-consultant-became-a-commercial-model

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Dan Khadem, on starting Access Database Support ($2,100/month) full story ➜

4. Start a motorcycle parts business ($7.2M/year)

Justin Pflanz from Lincoln, Nebraska, USA started TAB Performance over 17 years ago, a motorcycle parts business.

  • Location: Lincoln, Nebraska, USA
  • Revenue: $600,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 9

Our names are Justin and Casey and we are two brothers who have spent the last 10 years building and growing an aftermarket motorcycle exhaust and accessory business. Our main product is exhaust, but have been able to expand our business by adding several complimentary branded products as well as kitting package deals that might include non competing complementary products made by other companies. If someone needs another product to enhance or use the product you make, you might as well offer it to your customer to create a more complete and pleasant shopping experience for your customer base.

We have grown a little over double every year for the past 4 years and are using that income to reinvest into new products and new capabilities for our company. Just this year we were able to purchase new equipment to allow us the ability to manufacture many complex parts ourselves which cuts down on cost and enhances our ability to be agile and adapt to new products quickly.

how-we-added-200k-worth-of-manufacturing-equipment-and-added-new-employees

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Justin Pflanz, on starting TAB Performance ($600,000/month) full story ➜

5. Develop a seo software ($2.64M/year)

Todd Hooper from Boulder, CO, USA started Prerender.io over 7 years ago, a seo software.

  • Location: Boulder, CO, USA
  • Revenue: $220,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 4

My name is Todd Hooper, and I’m a software engineer. I founded Prerender.io in 2014. Prerender.io allows search engines to crawl SEO-friendly versions of React, Angular, and Javascript websites.

As a solo founder and employee, I bootstrapped Prerender.io from zero to $2.5 million in ARR over 5 years!

how-i-bootstrapped-my-saas-company-to-2-5m-year-in-5-years-as-a-solo-founder

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Todd Hooper, on starting Prerender.io ($220,000/month) full story ➜

6. Start a transcription service business ($1.2M/year)

Ben Walker from Denver, CO, USA started Transcription Outsourcing almost 11 years ago, a transcription service business.

  • Location: Denver, CO, USA
  • Revenue: $100,000/ month
  • Starting Costs: $150,000
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 4

My name is Ben Walker and I am the CEO and Founder of Transcription Outsourcing, LLC in Denver, Colorado.

We provide guaranteed transcription services to the medical, legal, law enforcement, financial, academic, and general business industries. This means we work with doctors, lawyers, law enforcement agencies, wealth management companies, universities, authors, podcasts, and even insurance companies to help them run their offices better.

Transcription Outsourcing was awarded the NASPO ValuePoint ($16 billion in annual sales from 65 contracts) transcription services contract three years ago, over 26 other companies, and haven’t looked back since.

how-we-started-a-100k-month-company-that-provides-transcription-services

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Ben Walker, on starting Transcription Outsourcing ($100,000/month) full story ➜

7. Start a sporting goods store ($90K/year)

Kyler Russell from Midwest, Kansas, USA started Comfy Cup LLC over 4 years ago, a sporting goods store.

  • Location: Midwest, Kansas, USA
  • Revenue: $7,500/ month
  • Starting Costs: $25,000
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2

My name is Kyler, I am the inventor and co-founder of the Comfy Cup. I am currently 12-years old, but I was 8-years old when I came up with the idea to create a more comfortable athletic cup for boys.

I was frustrated by the protective athletic cup my baseball coach required boys on my team to wear. It was hard and uncomfortable. I would fidget with it in the batter’s box, on the field, and in the dugout. It was a constant interference from focusing on the game. I tried a variety of athletic cups available in sporting goods stores and online, but couldn’t find a better solution.

Instead of whining about it, my parents challenged me to come up with a solution. And now, I hit a homerun! Comfy Cup is changing the game for youth boy athletes. My simple invention has grown into a successful business venture for me and my family. Comfy Cup is now available on Amazon and The Grommet and in my local Scheels sporting goods store.

how-a-12-year-old-started-a-100k-athletic-cup-product

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Kyler Russell, on starting Comfy Cup LLC ($7,500/month) full story ➜

8. Start a marketing agency ($1.2M/year)

Travis Richardson from Denver, Colorado, USA started Impressions Agency almost 8 years ago, a marketing agency.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $100,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 20

From Honeymoon to Prosperous Company

I’m Travis Richardson. My wife Charisa and I started our company Impressions Agency in 2013--an online digital marketing agency. At that time we were living in Costa Rica on the beach. Our end goal then was to pay our bills of $800 per month (dreaming big :)) while living the Pura Vida lifestyle. My hidden motive was to turn our Costarican experience into an indefinite honeymoon. At that time we had been married for 6 months.

how-we-started-a-100k-month-marketing-agency-during-our-honeymoon-in-costa-rica

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Travis Richardson, on starting Impressions Agency ($100,000/month) full story ➜

9. Start a crime scene cleanup business ($33.6M/year)

Nick-Anthony Zamucen from Greenwood Village, Colorado, USA started Bio-One about 13 years ago, a crime scene cleanup business.

  • Location: Greenwood Village, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $2,800,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 7

Hello readers, this is Nick-Anthony Zamucen again. I have created four franchised organizations, working on the fifth as I type this. I have sold two of those organizations to private equity companies for an 8x multiple and frankly, after the second sale, I don’t have to work another day in my life, but how boring would that be?

The reason for living is giving and creation and I love to do both. Plus, I enjoy showing aspiring Entrepreneurs actually how to be successful and not become Wantrepreneurs. Success breeds success.

how-we-grew-to-127-locations-and-got-featured-on-a-tv-show

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Nick-Anthony Zamucen, on starting Bio-One ($2,800,000/month) full story ➜

10. Start a music licensing business ($2.52M/year)

Aaron Green from Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA started Easy Song Licensing almost 16 years ago, a music licensing business.

  • Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  • Revenue: $210,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 6

Hello! This is Aaron Green, Vice President and co-founder of EasySongLicensing.com. We are a 3rd party music licensing agent, specializing in music clearance for any type of permission, for any type of use; kind of like your one-stop music nerd Swiss Army Knife!

Our work involves helping indie artists, record labels, online aggregators (such as CD Baby), filmmakers, studios, video production companies, entertainment lawyers and corporate clients with all their music licensing needs by brokering music clearance deals with music publishers and record labels. These types of permissions include:

  • Mechanical song licensing (re-recorded cover versions of copyrighted material for audio-only releases)
  • Video synchronization (commercial/advertisements/branding/TV/film/DVD/Video-On-Demand/internet streaming/public display, etc.; any video or visual use of copyrighted material)
  • Master rights (use of an original master sound recording)
  • Theatrical rights (live stage/musicals/dramas)
  • and Print licensing (digital and physical print publications, sheet music arrangements)

how-we-bootstrapped-a-music-licensing-business-to-2-5m-year

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Aaron Green, on starting Easy Song Licensing ($210,000/month) full story ➜

11. Start a shoe brand ($18M/year)

Steven Sashen from Broomfield, Colorado, USA started Xero Shoes over 11 years ago, a shoe brand.

  • Location: Broomfield, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $1,500,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 44

Hi, I’m Steven Sashen and I’m the co-founder (with my wife, Lena Phoenix) and CEO of Xero Shoes.

Xero Shoes are addictively comfortable, lightweight, minimalist, casual and performance shoes and sandals that people in 97 countries wear for everything from a walk on the beach to a mountain hike to running a 256k ultra marathon across Madagascar.

Everything we do is based on what’s natural.

xero-shoes-growing-a-shoe-brand-to-460k-month

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Steven Sashen, on starting Xero Shoes ($1,500,000/month) full story ➜

12. Start a drinkware brand

Jon Fox from Boulder, Colorado, USA started EcoVessel over 10 years ago, a drinkware brand.

  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • Starting Costs: $15,000
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 11

I grew up in a family where both of my parents started their own businesses, so I have had an interest in being an entrepreneur since I was fairly young. My brothers developed the same interests and one of them teaches entrepreneurship at an International University in Barcelona, and I have a twin brother that chef and founder of multiple restaurants in San Francisco.

To be successful, you can never stop innovating and trying out new ideas.

I studied Business with an emphasis in Marketing in college and got started in my career in technology sales in Arizona and then in the Bay Area. After working in technology for several years, I decided that I wanted to have a larger impact on people’s lives and do something that would help people, so I started an alternative health wellness center, called Whole Body Balance, in Boulder, Colorado. From there I got interested in designing and developing products and started a company that manufactured and sold water filtration systems.

on-starting-an-insulated-drinkware-brand-and-growing-sales-100

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Jon Fox, on starting EcoVessel (/month) full story ➜

13. Start a financial advisor business

AJ Stockwell from Omaha, Nebraska, USA started Climb CFO over 2 years ago, a financial advisor business.

  • Location: Omaha, Nebraska, USA
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

I started college as an engineering major at Arizona State University. I always had an entrepreneurial spirit and quickly realized engineering (especially biomedical engineering) isn’t a quick path to starting a company. Switching to the business school, I wanted to choose a major that was more technical and academic compared to the topics I believed made more sense to learn in “real life,” such as marketing or management. So I chose accounting – “the language of business,” as Warren Buffett calls it.

Researching keyword traffic for interest in your product would be a completely free way to start validating your idea before putting too much time or money into it.

Just a year after switching my major, I saw an opportunity to learn QuickBooks and see if any small businesses around Tempe needed help with their bookkeeping. I spoke with one business owner I knew and looked up to, and he agreed to let me handle a small aspect of his bookkeeping. I was off to the races. I started cold-calling local businesses and responding to Craigslist ads, and that’s how I got my first few clients.

on-building-a-6-figure-outsourced-cfo-firm

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AJ Stockwell, on starting Climb CFO (/month) full story ➜

14. Start a fitness facility ($240K/year)

Paul Dickey and Alec Abend from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada started Hexbox Fitness almost 2 years ago, a fitness facility.

  • Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • Revenue: $20,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 7

Hello! Our names are Alec Abend and Paul Dickey, Co-Founders of Hexbox Fitness. We are a state of the art, upscale Fitness Facility. The combination of our own branded class and 24 hour Member access has created our own unique model carving out our own lane within the ever growing Fitness Industry.

Our HXBX® Class combines HR Technology, community, and a strength and conditioning based program; in a game structured format to give our Members the best and most fun workouts they’ve experienced. With an emphasis on building lean muscle, all while improving cardiovascular endurance.

On top of being a community driven facility, our members get the convenience of 24 hour access to come in and use the equipment any time, any day. We currently have 1 location in the Monterey, CA area, and are working on locking in a few franchise and licensing deals to expand.

how-we-started-a-20k-month-fitness-facility

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Paul Dickey and Alec Abend, on starting Hexbox Fitness ($20,000/month) full story ➜

15. Start a food tour company ($420K/year)

Jessica Baumgart from Denver, Colorado, USA started Delicious Denver Food Tours over 3 years ago, a food tour company.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $35,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

Hi, I’m Jessica Baumgart, and in 2017 I founded Delicious Denver Food Tours to connect Denver locals and visitors to my city’s amazing food scene.

Many people don’t know what a food tour is, although they are the fastest growing sector in tourism. Food tours are walking (sometimes driving or biking) city tours that feature local restaurants, dishes and chefs.

how-i-started-a-wildly-successful-food-tour-business

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Jessica Baumgart, on starting Delicious Denver Food Tours ($35,000/month) full story ➜

16. Start a shipping company ($240K/year)

Dvir Edri from Denver, CO, USA started Car Shipping Calculator over 10 years ago, a shipping company.

  • Location: Denver, CO, USA
  • Revenue: $20,000/ month
  • Starting Costs: $100,000
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 7

Hi! I’m Dvir and I run Nationwide Auto Transportation. NAT is an auto shipping broker, which means that we connect consumers in need of car shipping services with truckers who transport vehicles across the United States.

Since the inception of our company 12 years ago, we have served more than 50,000 customers - many multiple times. We ship approximately 4,000 vehicles per month.

Transporting the Batmobile

how-i-started-a-20k-month-auto-shipping-broker-business

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Dvir Edri, on starting Car Shipping Calculator ($20,000/month) full story ➜

17. Start a fashion business ($43.2K/year)

Garret "Buddy" Lamp from Holstein, Iowa, USA started Knee Deep Limited LLC ago, a fashion business.

  • Location: Holstein, Iowa, USA
  • Revenue: $3,600/ month
  • Starting Costs: $80,000
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0

What’s going on! I am Garret “Buddy” Lamp, and I am a co-founder with Taylor “Earl” Nees of our start-up, Muff Waders. Muff Waders is an epic product that Earl came up with about 3 years ago, and we just began selling in September 2019.

Muff Waders are the first-ever bibs for work AND play. The bibs have many different features that allow you to keep your drinks close while working outdoors or being the life of the party. Made with strong and tough material, these bibs are built to withstand the rugged elements of mother nature.

The main feature is the insulated six-pack cooler located on the chest that holds 12 oz. cans and bottles. Along with that, there are two pockets located on the side of the leg that can hold 1/5 of liquor, a bottle of wine, etc. nice and snug. A Muff Mug (magnetic coozie) located at the top of the Muff Waders that attaches to the metal bottle opener. People love using this feature so they can go hands-free. On the inside of the bibs, you'll find a hidden/concealed pocket to keep your valuable possessions close and safe.

how-we-designed-and-launched-the-first-ever-bibs-for-work-and-play

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Garret "Buddy" Lamp, on starting Knee Deep Limited LLC ($3,600/month) full story ➜

18. Start a marketing agency ($1.2M/year)

Kenn Kelly from Denver, Colorado, USA started Never Settle almost 9 years ago, a marketing agency.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $100,000/ month
  • Founders: 3
  • Employees: 15

Hello, I’m Kenn Kelly and co-found Never Settle with two dear friends Andrew Lundquist and Shaul Hagen. Never Settle is a Digital Agency where relationships with our customers come first - after all, they are everything in our business. Although small, we’ve been globally recognized as a leader in mobile, website & marketing solutions.

Our clients range from small mom and pop businesses to enterprises. Our flagship product is eCommerce development. Whether helping a business sell products for the first time online or helping a company manage online sales + in-store purchases + Amazon from one unified inventory and reporting system, we’ve completed a very diverse set of work inside the eCommerce ecosystem. While we technically do a lot of eCommerce, marketing, and web development - really what we’re experts in, is helping our customers build bigger stories.

We’re huge fans of ‘lean methodology’ and that’s one of the things that sets us apart. We’re the first to help clients reduce their overall budget while coming up with creative ways to leverage what’s needed at that moment to create the maximum impact. Because we’re in it for the long haul, we’re not focused on getting the most out of our clients, but rather we’re focused on building a long-lasting mutually beneficial relationship. From that starting position, everything else falls in line.

how-i-left-silicon-valley-and-started-a-100k-month-digital-agency

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Kenn Kelly, on starting Never Settle ($100,000/month) full story ➜

19. Start an education products business ($12K/year)

Alex Bricker from Fort Collins, Colorado, USA started ESL With Purpose over 3 years ago, an education products business.

  • Location: Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $1,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

My name’s Alex and I started ESL With Purpose, LLC. Our mission is to see millions of English learners change their lives through English skills.

Our flagship products are the Phrase It™ cards and Phrase It™ dice. I currently make between $600-$1,000/month, depending on inventory flow and availability of profit reinvestment.

I started with 0 sales a day in 2017 and now average 2-3 sales per day. In 2019, I started an online course to teach English called Learn American English Online: English on the Street. I designed this to help more students plus increase cash flow to keep my inventory cycles going.

how-i-started-a-side-hustle-making-an-extra-1000-month

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Alex Bricker, on starting ESL With Purpose ($1,000/month) full story ➜

20. Start a dog clothing line

Tyson Walters from Irvine, California, USA started Shed Defeder over 4 years ago, a dog clothing line.

  • Location: Irvine, California, USA
  • Starting Costs: $50,000
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 2

I’m Tyson Walters, the founder and CEO of Shed Defender. The company officially launched in October 2016, but I came up with the idea about 6 years ago and spent a few years testing out fabrics and designs so it’s been a long road to get to where we are today.

The only product we sell right now is the flagship product - the Shed Defender, which is a versatile onesie that contains pet hair and dander, reduces anxiety and can replace the medical cone for dogs with hotspots, skin conditions, allergies, surgical sites and more. We have nine different sizes so we are able to fit dogs from about 5 lbs. up to 200 lbs.

To date, we’ve sold over 30,000 units and generated over $1.7 million in sales. In 2019 were expected to continue growing and have some exciting new products in the works!

the-shed-defender-70k-per-month-selling-onesies-for-dogs

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Tyson Walters, on starting Shed Defeder (/month) full story ➜

21. Start an athletic clothing line ($180K/year)

Paul Dickey from Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada started Spuds almost 4 years ago, an athletic clothing line.

  • Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • Revenue: $15,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

Hi, my name is Paul Dickey, I'm 23 years old, and I am the founder of Spuds, a men’s performance apparel company currently based out of the Monterey, California area.

We started our life out by first being funded through our Kickstarter campaign this past Summer 2017. Our vision as a company is to create performance apparel built for everywhere, not just at the gym or for running.

Whether you are going out to dinner, a family gathering, for a hike, a run, or even to the gym, our pieces of clothing combine performance fabrics, intelligent details, modern technologies, and a classic design. Men don’t really have the “yoga leggings for women”, a single article of clothing that can look good and perform well depending on how you dress them. We are aiming to change that.

raising-15-000-for-a-cross-functional-pair-of-shorts

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Paul Dickey, on starting Spuds ($15,000/month) full story ➜

22. Become a nutritionist ($24K/year)

Haley Hughes from Greeley, Colorado, USA started RDRx Nutrition over 7 years ago, a nutritionist.

  • Location: Greeley, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $2,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

I’m Haley Hughes, owner of RDRx Nutrition where I provide individualized nutritional counseling. I am a Registered Dietitian, Certified Diabetes Educator, CrossFit Level 1 Coach, as well as an avid athlete and adventurer. I am measuring progress this year by being able to have a better work-life balance.

This year I was able to increase my rates by over 100% which has been an incredible way to provide higher quality service and prevent mental fatigue and burnout.

how-adding-virtual-counseling-sessions-increased-our-revenue

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Haley Hughes, on starting RDRx Nutrition ($2,000/month) full story ➜

23. Start an online advertising agency ($15M/year)

Joel Cox from Denver, Colorado, USA started Strategus over 6 years ago, an online advertising agency.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $1,250,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 21

I’m Joel Cox, co-founder and executive vice president of strategy and innovation for Strategus, an advertising technology startup founded in Denver in 2014. The company pioneered the first programmatic OTT/CTV (Over-The-Top digital streaming over Connected Television) advertising campaign the following year.

The Strategus Managed Services Platform produces real-time automated ad campaigns that instantly deliver custom, audience-targeted messages to CTVs and other internet-connected devices. With a wide variety of brand and agency customers, our growth has been phenomenal, with revenues of $14.8 million in 2019. We’ve been on the Inc. 5000 three years running due to our geometric sales increases.

how-we-started-the-first-programmatic-ott-ctv-advertising-company

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Joel Cox, on starting Strategus ($1,250,000/month) full story ➜

24. Start a newsletter publishing business ($7.98M/year)

Matthew Paulson from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA started MarketBeat over 10 years ago, a newsletter publishing business.

  • Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota, USA
  • Revenue: $665,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 6

I am an entrepreneur, a private equity investor, and an author based out of Sioux Falls, South Dakota. My business, MarketBeat, is a financial media and marketing business that publishes stock market news, data, and research tools for individual stock investors. Our company publishes a free daily stock newsletter, which just surpassed 2 million active subscribers. We also ended 2020 at $14.3 million in total revenue, which was up 85% compared to 2019.

MarketBeat’s growth story and my story have been documented in my book, The Ten Year Turnaround. In the book, I talk about how I grew MarketBeat from nothing and how that has informed me as an investor, a business owner, and as a leader. I also periodically write about the business lessons I’ve picked up on over the years on my personal blog.

Here’s a photo of me at our new office:

marketbeat-update-how-we-increased-revenue-from-8m-to-14m-year

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Matthew Paulson, on starting MarketBeat ($665,000/month) full story ➜

25. Start a watch brand ($72K/year)

Steve Christensen from Alberta, Canada started NOVO watch over 5 years ago, a watch brand.

  • Location: Alberta, Canada
  • Revenue: $6,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

Hi! My name is Steve Christensen and I handmake watches using reclaimed materials such as military tanks and train tracks at Novo Watch. I consider myself a horologist so my profession ends in -ist and my mom thinks I made it.

Our flagship product is BY FAR our Coalbanks collection watch. They’re timepieces made using train tracks made between the years of 1882 - 1885! Originally they were made in Wales or the UK and shipped to my hometown of Lethbridge to be used at Mine #8 where they facilitated the transportation of coal to build our city.

It is an iconic place to many people and it’s where we found our original traction. It even made the National news in Canada, which was wild. We completely sold out of our first limited 15 piece editions immediately and had our first-ever $16,000 day!

steve-christensen-is-building-watches-from-old-train-tracks

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Steve Christensen, on starting NOVO watch ($6,000/month) full story ➜

26. Start a handmade paper goods business ($13.2K/year)

Abigail Butler from Denver, Colorado, USA started Chirps & Cricket Design Studio about 6 years ago, a handmade paper goods business.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $1,100/ month
  • Starting Costs: $500
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

Hello again! My name is Abigail Butler and I am the owner and sole designer at Chirps & Cricket Design Studio, located here in Denver, Colorado. Chirps & Cricket is a design studio that specializes in Bespoke Wedding Stationery, Graphic Design and Illustration, and Handmade Paper Goods.

Currently, my design services are heavily rooted in custom illustrations, wedding invitations, and marketing materials, including brochures, branding, and email/digital marketing. My clients typically range in variety (which I love!) from soon-to-be-married couples, small business owners, to commercial real estate brokers.

I am currently making a little over $1k/month on average. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, that amount has fluctuated over this past summer, with some months being significantly higher, and some months being a bit under that amount. However I am happy to report that not only has my average monthly income increased since this time last year, but there also seems to be a much more consistent influx of new projects every month (even despite Covid)! This includes projects coming in from repeat clients as well as new clients.

how-i-gained-new-projects-and-designed-more-products

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Abigail Butler, on starting Chirps & Cricket Design Studio ($1,100/month) full story ➜

27. Start a leather business ($132K/year)

Brad Gadd from Alberta, Canada started The Populess Company over 8 years ago, a leather business.

  • Location: Alberta, Canada
  • Revenue: $11,000/ month
  • Founders: 3
  • Employees: 0

My name is Brad Gadd I am the owner and operator of The Populess Co. Handcrafted Leather Goods and Apparel.

We sell handmade leather goods, mostly daily carry/wear items like Wallets, Belts, Notebooks covers, Fobs and accessories and have a line of apparel as well. We love to work with other creatives to showcase and deliver their authenticity to collaborate on our products. Our customers are people that understand and appreciate simple quality and timeless design. We are a very small company that has been organically growing year after year.

We recently just did a project with a talented Tattoo artist that tattooed leather for us and we crafted various wallets out of each piece. We love working with talented authentic creatives to showcase their work and tell their story.

starting-a-handcrafted-leather-brand

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Brad Gadd, on starting The Populess Company ($11,000/month) full story ➜

28. Start a resume writing service ($24K/year)

Alex Benjamin from United States started Recruiter Written almost 3 years ago, a resume writing service.

  • Location: United States
  • Revenue: $2,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

Hi everyone! My name is Alex Benjamin, founder of Recruiter Written. We are a resume and LinkedIn profile writing service that provides our clients with an extraordinary advantage in the job market.

As a recruiter with 13 years of experience selling candidates to hiring managers, Recruiter Written combines staffing industry best practices, keyword optimization, and a collaborative approach to create a compelling story that highlights our client’s value in the job market.

In addition, we now offer services for one-on-one job search coaching (covering topics from search and application strategies to interview preparation to offer negotiation) as well and employer services, such as job description writing, phone interview forms, and reference check questionnaires.

how-i-started-a-profitable-resume-writing-side-project

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Alex Benjamin, on starting Recruiter Written ($2,000/month) full story ➜

29. Start an electronics store ($48K/year)

Jeff Olson from Denver, Colorado, USA started LEVDisplay over 3 years ago, an electronics store.

  • Location: Denver, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $4,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

Hi, my name is Jeff and I live in Denver, CO. I started LEVdisplay last year after becoming fascinated with levitating magnets.

I am currently selling 30 units/month with 50% margin and ramping up to sell 100/month during the holidays.

starting-an-amazon-business-as-a-bartender

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Jeff Olson, on starting LEVDisplay ($4,000/month) full story ➜

30. Start an iphone app

Chelsea Rhoads from Boulder, Colorado, USA started pup•eeze almost 5 years ago, an iPhone app.

  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • Starting Costs: $250,000
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 3

My name is Chelsea Rhoads and I am the CEO/Co-Founder of pup-eeze, the smartest device on four legs. pup-eeze is a wellness tracker for dogs that tracks activity, monitors location and automates our dog’s lives by connecting them with hundreds of smart home devices giving ourselves and our dogs the ability to monitor, maintain and change the environment of the home if we’re concerned about separation anxiety or well-being.

We’ve built out a consumer-facing application for dog owners to monitor their pets’ data, visualize trends and send alerts when necessary. We’re focusing on the happy dog by creating an adjustable ecosystem for the dog’s environment.

We’ve had great success speaking with and testing the wellness tracker among those who love their dogs and love technology. We thought, “we bring our dogs on every other journey with us, why not include them in the technology journey as well?” With the overwhelming support from the technology community we were able to strategically partner with an emerging leader in the IoT enterprise solution field; Fathym.

how-i-created-and-launched-a-fitbit-for-dogs

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Chelsea Rhoads, on starting pup•eeze ($0/month) full story ➜

31. Start a skin care line ($24K/year)

Danna Norek from COPLEY started Aura Sensory about 9 years ago, a skin care line.

  • Location: COPLEY
  • Revenue: $2,000/ month
  • Starting Costs: $4,000
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

Hello, my name is Danna Norek and I am the founder of Aura Sensory. I am a company of one, supported enthusiastically by my husband who lends the occasional genius business idea. My company offers a growing line of safer, high-quality, effective skin, and hair care products that are universally affordable.

My flagship product is Natural Shine Enhancing Shampoo, followed closely by Nourish & Hydrate Face Cream. These two products have been around since almost day one, have attracted the most repeat customers, and continue to be strong performers, and attract the most significant volume of glowing reviews and unwavering customer loyalty.

how-i-left-my-job-to-start-a-2k-month-skin-and-hair-care-brand

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Danna Norek, on starting Aura Sensory ($2,000/month) full story ➜

32. Start a maternity store ($18K/year)

Kate Johnson from Greeley, Colorado, USA started Tula Fit about 3 years ago, a maternity store.

  • Location: Greeley, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $1,500/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0

Hi! My name is Kate Johnson! I am a CrossFit and Pregnancy and Postpartum Athleticism Coach in beautiful northern Colorado. I’m also a mom to two adventurous little boys!

In 2018, I started my personal training business TulaFit, to fill a much-needed gap for women. It’s my mission to help educate and empower pregnant and postpartum women with the mindset and movement strategies that support long term strength and function to handle everyday mom life and get them back to the activities they love.

I offer in-person and remote consultations, programming, workshops, and coaching services. I work 5-10 hours a week in my business but have been able to reach hundreds of women by hosting workshops, working virtually, podcasts, and utilizing social media platforms like Instagram.

how-i-started-a-business-helping-mums-get-in-shape-during-and-after-pregnancy

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Kate Johnson, on starting Tula Fit ($1,500/month) full story ➜

33. Start a social media marketing service ($600K/year)

David Schlais from Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA started Vital Traffic Labs over 4 years ago, a social media marketing service.

  • Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  • Revenue: $50,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0

Hey Starter Story! Thanks for having me back! I am the founder of Vital Traffic Labs, an agency that uses social media to help clients grow their businesses! I am also passionate about helping other aspiring entrepreneurs leave their 9-5 jobs and start businesses that they can run from anywhere in the world.

We have helped hundreds of entrepreneurs achieve this through our program, TheSMMABlueprint.com! We have been able to scale our business to over USD 50,000 per month and have helped countless others achieve a 6-figure, location independent/laptop lifestyle.

how-we-grew-our-partnership-network-and-scaled-the-business-to-50k-month

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David Schlais, on starting Vital Traffic Labs ($50,000/month) full story ➜

34. Start a payment app ($720K/year)

Ryan Scherf from Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA started Payment for Stripe about 6 years ago, a payment app.

  • Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA
  • Revenue: $60,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1

I’m Ryan Scherf, the founder of payment.co (@payment), an app built on top of the Stripe payment gateway for creating card-present charges. Payment is available on iOS and Android, and allows customers who have created online stores to easily collect payments in person, in the same account, with no barriers or card readers required.

The app launched in January 2015, and since has grown to process over $70M in volume annually. The app collects a 1% service fee on every single charge.

how-i-created-a-60k-month-app-that-collects-in-person-payments-through-stripe

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Ryan Scherf, on starting Payment for Stripe ($60,000/month) full story ➜

35. Develop a mac app ($2.4M/year)

Matt Ronge from Minneapolis, MN, USA started Astropad over 7 years ago, a mac app.

  • Location: Minneapolis, MN, USA
  • Revenue: $200,000/ month
  • Starting Costs: $10,000
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 16

My name is Matt Ronge and I’m Cofounder and CEO at Astropad. At Astropad, we make software and hardware tools for creative people. Our two main products are Astropad Studio and Luna Display.

Astropad Studio is an app that mirrors your Mac on to your iPad, turning it into a high-end drawing tablet. We’re incredibly proud that Astropad Studio is used by tens of thousands of creative professionals and companies like Pixar, DC Comics, Disney, Nintendo, Twitter, and even Star Wars!

Our second product, Luna Display is a small hardware dongle that turns the iPad or another Mac into a wireless second display. You plug the Luna device into your Mac and then install the app on the device you’d like to use as your 2nd monitor, and you’re all set!

how-we-created-our-200k-month-ipad-and-mac-apps-and-tools-for-creatives

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Matt Ronge, on starting Astropad ($200,000/month) full story ➜

36. Start an online food business ($2.1M/year)

Scott Unkefer from Boulder, Colorado, USA started Just Panela LLC almost 6 years ago, an online food business.

  • Location: Boulder, Colorado, USA
  • Revenue: $175,000/ month
  • Founders: 3
  • Employees: 10

Hello, I’m Scott Unkefer - I started Just Panela, now, about 7 years ago. We purchase (from our partner farm), package, and export (from Colombia) and Import (now too) United States, Canada, and Asia, and Australia our 1lb, 5lb, bulk ingredient, and individual serving size sachets of ‘panela’ cane sugar. Panela is 100% unprocessed, unrefined, artisanal, and certified organic sugarcane.

Our core competency and primary market is retail/ customer (I hate the word ‘consumer’) packaging of Panela. It is by far the hardest ‘powder’ type substance on the planet to package due to its characteristics. Our motto is “terrible for machine consumption, great for human consumption”. As it is by far the healthiest form of sugar cane on the planet as it is 100% unprocessed, unrefined, and organic.

Flagship product? As an ingredient, it’s really a question of “flagship application” as far as what food and beverages it’s best in. The current answer is this, but the funniest part about Just Panela® is that we have end users innovating with it and telling us what they want to do with it all the time:

how-the-pandemic-increased-our-sales-by-200

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Scott Unkefer, on starting Just Panela LLC ($175,000/month) full story ➜

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