15 Productivity-Related Business Ideas You Can Start Today

15 Productivity-Related Business Ideas You Can Start Today

Let's face it - one way or another, everyone wants to be more productive.

So, where do most people turn to? Tools and software to make them more productive (or at least feel more productive).

Businesses like Trello, Monday.com and Hubspot are all wildly successful - and more businesses like these are coming into the market every day.

If you have a passion for productivity and are looking to start a business, we put together 15 different productivity-related business ideas you can start today.

Here they are:

1. Start a podcast ($5.03K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$419 — $1,020,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$4,868
Time To Revenue
90 days
Time Commitment Per Week
Min. 2 hours/week
Skills
Interests
Business model

Darren Reighard from Carlisle started Cars of Carlisle over 4 years ago, a podcast.

  • Revenue: $419/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Carlisle

Case Study

In the winter of 2018, I ran into a friend as we were clearing snow from our cars. As we began to catch up in the parking lot that bitterly cold morning, he explained that he had been successful with a podcast about his Amazon and eBay seller business. As we both live in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, the epicenter of automotive car shows and car parts swap meets, he knew that I was a car aficionado. Sagely, my friend identified a need -- that our hometown was without an automotive podcast. However, he admitted he did not have the time, interest, or knowledge. This is where the cartoon light bulb came on for me!

It is critically important for me to build strong relationships and loyalties with our listenership.

With my mass communications degree and love of production and writing, the natural path was for me to “take the wheel” and create a virtual product to fill this niche and market gap. At that time, I was busy and satisfied working 45+ workweeks in the same corporate management position that I still happily hold today; however, this new passion creatively fueled me.

how-i-created-a-profitable-podcast-for-car-enthusiasts

2. Start a team collaboration app ($12M/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$3,000 — $1,000,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$25,000
Time To Revenue
360 days
Skills

Michael Hollauf from Vienna, Austria started Meister over 15 years ago, a team collaboration app.

  • Revenue: $1,000,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 85
  • Location: Vienna, Austria

Case Study

It all started about 15 years ago when I worked together with my co-founder Till at another tech company. I was based in London at the time, Till was in New York and later Munich. We both loved IT but had grown a bit bored with our jobs, so we decided to start our own business. The first business was an outsourcing company, where we did web projects for other companies with a Romanian development team. This was good fun but hard work and tough to grow.

At that time the news was that Google had just acquired a company called Writely and turned their product into what is now Google Docs, which we started using almost immediately to collaborate on projects at work. We were also using MindManager, at the time the only serious mind mapping software, to brainstorm product ideas and also to conduct and organize customer meetings. MindManager was a standard OS-dependent program that had to be installed locally and licensed for about $300, which made it very hard to share our mind maps with anybody else, as they would have had to buy the software as well. Also, you couldn't collaborate at all, which is something quite important for a brainstorming tool.

If your product isn’t sticky, no amount of content marketing will offset your user churn.

how-our-team-collaboration-apps-generate-600k-month

3. Start an email automation platform ($420K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$3,500 — $400,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$14,620
Time To Revenue
360 days
Skills

Arthur Backouche from Sydney, New South Wales, Australia started COLDINBOX over 2 years ago, a email automation platform.

  • Revenue: $35,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Case Study

I recently got my diploma in computer sciences and had the opportunity to move to Australia.

When I arrived in Sydney with $1,000 in my pocket, I spent 3 weeks looking every single day for a new job in growth/digital marketing.

It was a real challenge to engage with all the startups' CEOs in Sydney, and ask if they’re hiring for one reason: It’s a repetitive process.

how-we-launched-a-35k-month-tool-to-send-bulk-linkedin-messages

4. Start a time tracking app ($2.22M/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$350 — $500,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$29,210
Time To Revenue
330 days
Skills
Business model
Work from home

Dean A. Logan from New Jersey, USA started Labor Sync about 13 years ago, a time tracking app.

  • Revenue: $185,000/ month
  • Founders: 3
  • Employees: 12
  • Location: New Jersey, USA

Case Study

As a roofer and family business owner for 17 years, I faced the ongoing struggle of keeping track of my employees, job order costing, processing payroll and ultimately losing money due to the mismanagement of time.

As an end-user, I knew I needed a product that could streamline these processes but couldn’t find a single product on the market that met the needs of my company. At that point, I realized that if I am struggling with these problems, surely plenty of other business owners with a largely mobile workforce are facing the same issue. Thus, Labor Sync began!

My father and I partnered with IT guru Joe Burger and beta tested within our own roofing company, Complete Roof Systems (CRS), to see how this technology could help us save both time and money. Joe had his own company and was a tenant of one of our roofing clients, she introduced me to Joe and we immediately hit it off.

how-i-launched-a-185k-month-employee-time-gps-tracking-app

5. Create an online course ($60K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$350 — $3,735,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$4,297
Time To Revenue
150 days
Skills

Lidiya Kesarovska from The Netherlands started Let's Reach Success over 9 years ago, a online course.

  • Revenue: $5,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: The Netherlands

Case Study

Back in 2013, I had already discovered my passion - personal development - and had realized writing is the best way to express myself. So I combined these and started a self-improvement blog.

Starting the blog was the best decision and not giving up on it over the years (even when no traffic or money was coming in) was what helped me move forward.

It was first just a hobby and I knew nothing about blogging. Over the years, after publishing a ton of content, gaining traffic, learning about SEO, email marketing, social media, and all the ways to monetize a blog, it became a real business.

how-i-created-a-5k-month-online-course-about-blogging

6. Start a crm business ($1.92M/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$5,000 — $2,100,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$229,166
Skills

Lars Helgeson from San Diego, California, USA started GreenRope over 14 years ago, a CRM business.

  • Revenue: $160,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 15
  • Location: San Diego, California, USA

Case Study

After being honorably discharged from the US Air Force, I struck out on my own to build a different kind of software company. One that focused on providing real, long-term value to customers. I taught myself how to write code and worked day and night for 3 years to build the first version of our email marketing software.

In 2008, I realized that we could better serve our customers by taking a broader, more holistic view of business management. We worked with hundreds of our customers to come up with solutions to real problems they were having every day and found out that most of those problems had to do with managing information. Most businesses have disparate departments, software, and data, and the integration of that data is often an afterthought. GreenRope solves this with a single, unified platform that sales, marketing, customer service, and operations staff log in to.

When we started with GreenRope, we focused on the core CRM, email, and website elements of running a business. Then, we expanded into project management, customer service, and a few other functions common to many businesses. The last part was building automation, scoring, and predictive analytics since we were able to gather data from all of the other parts of the business’s operations.

on-starting-a-160k-month-crm-automations-company-after-a-us-air-force-career

7. Create a calendar sync tool ($2.12M/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$1,500 — $177,000/month
Skills

Andrew Rogoff from London, England, United Kingdom started Resource Guru over 11 years ago, a calendar sync tool.

  • Revenue: $177,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 12
  • Location: London, England, United Kingdom

Case Study

My cofounder, Percy, and I decided to build it while we were working in marketing agencies where we experienced the headaches of resource scheduling. In almost every agency we worked in, people were using ugly spreadsheets to schedule their teams.

Starting out wasn’t easy. We had to figure out how to survive without our existing jobs and neither of us had any savings. I realized that, if I became a freelancer, I could earn more money in 7 months than I normally made in a year.

I’m from an entrepreneurial family. Both my grandfather and my father ran their own businesses and I was really keen to follow suit. There’s something about watching company profits going into other people’s hands when I’m working my ass off that I find really hard to take. So, when Percy made the suggestion to start our own company, it was an immediate “yes”.

how-we-built-a-resource-scheduling-app-to-2-1m-arr

8. Start a planner brand ($270K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$6,000 — $50,000/month
Average Initial Investment
$10,000
Skills

Jess Yasuda from Hobart, Tasmania, Australia started Planner Peace about 7 years ago, a planner brand.

  • Revenue: $22,541/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Hobart, Tasmania, Australia

Case Study

When I started Chasing Planner Peace I was a mum of two very small children, working part-time in a job for the government. I found my job extremely unrewarding and boring and had a little avenue for creativity. I never dreamed that starting an Etsy store would lead to growing a company that could become a full-time career. I had always had it drummed into me to find a secure job and stick with it - don’t take risks!

After my second child was born I became interested in using a paper planner as a hobby. There’s actually quite a big community of people (mostly women) who combine organization and creativity and love using their planners as a memory-keeping, scrapbooking tool using stickers and washi tape to decorate.

I loved the idea of using Filofax type planners where you could really customize your planner by adding in what “inserts” (refill pages) you wanted. I would download printable inserts off Etsy for calendar pages, meal planning, etc. but I could never find a layout that really worked for me. I would also waste huge amounts of time, money and printer ink trying to print out the printable inserts - as every file was a different format.

how-i-started-a-12k-month-selling-productivity-planners-online

9. Start a task management software ($48K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$700 — $4,000/month
Skills

Examples of a successful task management software:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a task management software:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a task management software ➜

Case Study

Hello, I am Shyamal Parikh and I am the founder of SmartTask. SmartTask is a project management tool that aims to make people 3x more productive by helping them prioritize their tasks, distributing work amongst team members, and tracking sales using CRM.

We currently are at $4K MRR and received $300K in seed funding this year in April.

i-bootstrapped-my-48k-year-project-management-software-from-india

10. Start a time management/productivity coaching business

Examples of a successful time management/productivity coaching business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a time management/productivity coaching business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a time management/productivity coaching business ➜

article

11. Become a youtube personality

How Much Can You Make?
$3,055 — $4,500,000/month
Skills

Examples of a successful youtube personality:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a youtube personality:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a youtube personality ➜

Case Study
  • Zoella has a total net worth of more than $5 million as of January 2021.
  • She earned this fortune by uploading her YouTube videos and has almost a billion views.
  • She has 10.8 millions of subscribers on YouTube.
  • Her popularity made her appear in several advertisements and has also appeared on television.

article

Read the full story on influencermatchmaker.co.uk ➜

12. Start a project management tool ($252K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$3,000 — $1,200,000/month
Skills

Examples of a successful project management tool:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a project management tool:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a project management tool ➜

Case Study

My name is Lars Helgeson and I am the founder of GreenRope, a CRM and marketing automation platform. Our company started in 2000 as an email marketing SaaS and in 2008 decided to focus on the challenges that businesses face in managing sales, marketing, customer service, and operations.

GreenRope has over 1,000 customers in over 20 countries, ranging from startups to universities and municipalities.

on-starting-a-160k-month-crm-automations-company-after-a-us-air-force-career

13. Create a goal setting app

Examples of a successful goal setting app:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a goal setting app:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a goal setting app ➜

article

14. Start an online calendar business ($600K/year)

How Much Can You Make?
$50,000/month
Skills

Examples of a successful online calendar business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a online calendar business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting an online calendar business ➜

Case Study

I am Ilya Nevolin, Co-founder and Partner at Spurwing. I started Spurwing with my Co-founders Cavan and Erica, in February 2020. Spurwing provides a Scheduling API to develop time management solutions. In addition, we also offer a free, open-source marketplace with several widgets and apps that make business operations easier for our clients.

Our focus is apparent. We do not directly compete with solutions like Calendly or Google Calendar. Instead, we target software developers, engineers, managers, and CTOs. Our tool is a savior for early-stage startups. They can quickly adapt and integrate Spurwing into their products or services without any technical hassles.

how-we-developed-a-50k-month-scheduling-api

15. Start a to do list business

Examples of a successful to do list business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a to do list business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

Learn more about starting a to do list business ➜

article

Pat Walls,  Founder of Starter Story
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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.