24 Unique Business Ideas That Will Make You Money [2023]

Updated: July 24th, 2023

Looking for a business idea that will set you apart from the competition?

We put together a list of the most profitable unique business ideas that anyone can start today!

Some of these are pretty weird and crazy business ideas, but that is actually what makes them successful.

If you're looking to do something original, then this list is for you.

Here's the list:

1. Start a dog walking business

Are you a dog lover? If so, you can turn your passion for animals into a profitable side hustle that allows you to earn extra income for your mortgage, a vacation, or paying off student loans.

As a dog walker, sitter, or boarder, you can earn an average annual income of between $10,000 and $30,000 by offering your services to dog owners in need of a caregiver for their furry friends.

To get started, register on a credible dog-walking app and create a compelling profile that showcases your experience, skills, and love for dogs.

With your dedication and expertise, you can help dog owners ensure their pets receive the care and attention they need while building a thriving business that fulfills your passion for animals.

How much you can make: $8,000 β€” $54,000/month

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

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

Time commitment per week: Min. 2 hours/week

How I Started A $54K/Month Pet Sitting And Dog Walking Business

Furry Fellas Pet Service LLC is a successful pet sitting and dog walking business that brings in over half a million dollars in sales per year, boasts 3,500-4,000 social media followers, employs 42 individuals and has been voted in the top 3 pet sitting/dog walking companies in the RI/MA area for eight years in a row.

About
Melodi started Furry Fellas Pet Service LLC over 17 years ago
Revenue
Melodi grew the business to $54K/month
Costs
It cost Melodi $500 to start the business

2. Create a board game ($4.5K/month)

Creating your own board game can be fun, challenging, and rewarding. Games are an integral part of our culture and are played by people from all walks of life.

You can create a board game from scratch with basic programming knowledge or several hours of practice. Board games are easy to manufacture, can be made from home, and can become top-rated and profitable businesses.

How much you can make: $1,500 β€” $30,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $300 (?)

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

Time commitment per week: Min. 10 hours/week

3. Invent a hangover cure ($105K/month)

56% of drinkers have experienced a hangover! That's a lot of people dealing with headaches, nausea and general lethargy. The good news is that there is an entire industry devoted to curing hangovers.

How much you can make: $1,000 β€” $200,000/month

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

4. Create an online course

Online course businesses are one of the fastest-growing online business models. Creating an online course is an awesome way to generate extra income because it allows you to monetize the knowledge you already have. More people are taking online courses every day, and the COVID pandemic has accelerated that, with some online learning platforms having seen 15-fold growth in the number of users.

Another advantage is that these new platforms are so easy to use for instructors that you don't have to worry at all about the tech side of the business. You just need to focus on creating exciting content that is informational & engaging at the same time.

Starting an online course allows you to eliminate some of the huge costs associated with setting up a physical training facility, and it's a great way to reach as many people as possible.

How much you can make: $350 β€” $3,735,000/month

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

How long does it take to build: 88 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

5. Start a city maps business

The city maps business involves creating and selling customized maps of cities, neighborhoods, or specific areas.

The city maps can be used for decorative purposes, navigation aids, or as unique gifts.

To start this business on a budget, you can begin by researching and selecting popular cities or areas to create maps for.

Next, design the maps using graphic design software or outsource the design work if needed.

Finally, consider selling the maps online through platforms like Etsy, your own website, or at local markets and events.

How much you can make: $200 β€” $416,666/month

How much does it cost to start: $2,600 (?)

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

How Two Brothers Started A $3.5K/Month Side Hustle Sells Custom Maps

How a pair of engineering students co-founded Mapsery, a unique custom map poster business, and grew it into a $3.5k/month side hustle with a 25% profit margin in just over two years, despite facing increasing competition in the map poster niche.

About
Love started Mapsery about 6 years ago
Revenue
Love grew the business to $3.5K/month

6. Start an axe throwing business

Throwing axes is a great way to relieve stress, bond with friends and coworkers, and even make some money.

Axe throwing is a new and exciting activity that is growing in popularity, especially for corporate or business events.

How much you can make: $60,000 β€” $80,000/month

How We Started A $1M Axe-Throwing Party Business

Forged Axe Throwing is a successful axe throwing venue that teaches people the art of axe throwing while hosting tournaments, generating $960k of revenue per year and hosting over 30k people in their venue in a year.

About
James started Forged Axe Throwing almost 7 years ago
Revenue
James grew the business to $60K/month

7. Become a professional cuddler

Imagine being a professional cuddler for a living. Getting paid to snuggle your clients may sound strange, but this type of service has been in high demand over the last few years.

Think of 'snugglers' as a more personal therapist. They get paid for many services: hugging their clients, listening to their problems, coaching them, comforting & reducing stress, cooking and eating meals together and more.

How much you can make: $1,500 β€” $8,800/month

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

How I Make A Living Professionally Cuddling With People

Professional cuddler, Sam Varnerin, developed her successful one-to-one cuddle service, Snuggle with Sam, as a result of recognising the universal human need for connection and touch, which also led to her opening Sam’s Snuggle School, a course for aspiring professional cuddlers.

About
Samantha started Snuggle with Sam about 7 years ago
Revenue
Samantha grew the business to $8.8K/month

8. Create tiny homes ($295K/month)

People love living in small spaces. They're affordable and easy to maintain. Starting a tiny house-building business is a great way to help people and make money. You need to be licensed and insured to work in the state you live in, and you will also need a business license. Additionally, you will also have to research how much it costs to build a tiny house as well as what materials are needed for the project.

Tiny houses are becoming increasingly popular, offering a unique opportunity for you to get involved in the construction industry. The tiny homes industry is expected to grow to 3.57B by 2026.

How much you can make: $295,000 β€” $10,000,000/month

How long does it take to build: 700 days (?)

9. Build treehouses ($63.5K/month)

Tree houses are fun escape places for both young and adults alike. The kids use the tree houses for fun, play, and hiding, while the adults love spending their free time relaxing and enjoying the cool breeze on tree tops. Plus, this tree house concept is becoming quite popular in the hospitality industry as well.

Therefore, starting a tree house construction business could be a lucrative business opportunity. To build a tree house, you need unique design and architectural skills. A custom treehouse business can be a fun, challenging, and rewarding way to make money.

How much you can make: $63,500/month

How long does it take to build: 395 days (?)

10. Start a cat cafe business

The only thing that can make a local cafe better is cats. Grab a cup of coffee and snuggle a cat at the same time. Recently, cat cafes have been popping up around the country. Some of these cafes are independent operators, while others work with local humane societies to get cats adopted.

Create a network of cat cafes where people can interact and play with cats. Once established, a cat cafe business can increase its revenue by hosting events. Events often draw lots of people in, and a business can charge more for each person because there's a special event taking place.

You might consider the following options for your cat cafe business:

  • Adoptions: This type of cat cafe has cats that can be adopted. Some cat cafes specialize in rescued cats while others specialize in pedigree cats. These cat cafes can also have a combination of both.
  • Permanent residents: This type of cat cafe has several resident cats on the premises. Similar to the adoption cafes, these can be cats that have been rescued or pedigree cats, or both.
  • Full-service dining: This type of cat cafe has a full menu of food and beverages for its customers and sometimes for its cats as well.
  • Themed cafe: This type of cat cafe is designed around a specific theme. Garden themes and whimsical themes are quite popular.

11. Start a glamping business

Glamping is the ultimate in eco-chic these days. A glamorous twist on camping, glamping feels more like a 5-star hotel and less like roughing it.

You could turn your backyard into a campground that earns money every day.

12. Start a sensory deprivation tank business

Experience total isolation and float your way into blissful serenity. The sensory deprivation tank business has been growing, 20-25% as of a few years ago.

As our lives become more chaotic and stressful, people will continue to look for ways to destress, and float tanks might be one way that they pull out their wallets.

13. Start a pet hotel business

Starting your own pet hotel business is not as difficult as you might think. With the right knowledge and hard work, you can achieve a lot in the pet industry.

A pet hotel is a place where people bring their cats and dogs for short-term boarding. It's a business that provides pet-sitting services in which customers can board their pets while they're out of town, or while they're at work.

Over 60M households own dogs or cats in the United States. What happens when they leave town or go on vacation? Pet boarding is a lucrative industry that can be served locally in any state or city across the world.

14. Start a cat treats brand

How much you can make: $30,000/month

How I Built A Successful Company Selling Cat Treats Online

Cat Sushi went from repackaging tuna flakes to creating a unique pet treat brand by leveraging their connections to the pet industry and focusing on a beautiful design that set them apart from their competition.

About
Spyq started Cat Sushi over 8 years ago
Revenue
Spyq grew the business to $30K/month

15. Start a puppet fabric store

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

Growing To $9,000/month Selling Hard-To-Find Puppet Fabric

Puppet Pelts founder Laurie Nickerson explains how she started her company by filling a void in the market, grew it primarily organically through word of mouth to become a leader in puppet skin textile manufacturing, and is currently expanding her product line to include unique shags and colors.

About
Laurie started Puppet Pelts almost 11 years ago
Revenue
Laurie grew the business to $10K/month

16. Start a weighted blankets brand

Are you looking for a unique business idea to help people feel calm and relaxed? A weighted blanket brand might be the perfect fit for you!

Weighted blankets are a popular therapeutic tool that uses deep pressure touch to provide comfort and security. They can be especially helpful for individuals with anxiety, ADHD, or sensory processing disorders.

Starting a weighted blanket brand requires research and planning, but it can be fulfilling and profitable. First, you’ll need to decide on the type of blankets you want to offer. Options include different sizes, weights, and materials such as cotton, Minky, or fleece. You’ll also need to choose a reliable supplier and determine your pricing strategy.

Next, you’ll need to consider your marketing and sales strategy. This could involve setting up an online store, attending trade shows, or partnering with retailers. You’ll also want a solid social media presence to connect with potential customers.

Finally, don’t forget about customer service! Providing excellent service and support to your customers will help you stand out in the market and build a loyal customer base.

Starting a weighted blanket brand requires dedication and hard work, but it can be a rewarding and lucrative business idea. If you’re passionate about helping people feel more comfortable and relaxed, this could be the perfect opportunity for you!

How much you can make: $21 β€” $416,000/month

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

How I Started A $100K/Month Business Selling Weighted Blankets From Bali

Baloo Living, a Bali-based wellness company founded in 2018, saw incredible success in its first year, reaching six and seven-figure sales figures within just three and 12 months respectively by offering a high-quality, thoughtfully-designed weighted blanket.

About
Elizabeth started Baloo Living about 6 years ago
Revenue
Elizabeth grew the business to $416K/month
Costs
It cost Elizabeth $20000 to start the business

17. Start a golf simulators business

Everyone wants to believe they can be as good as a pro when they step up to a tee. A golf simulator is one way to keep practicing and building golf skills. Golf simulators have exploded in popularity over the past decade, making them a profitable business venture.

Golf simulators allow one to practice and play virtual golf on courses 24/7, indoors or outdoors. The simulators record player's real-time metrics showing how one is doing and highlighting areas that need improvement. The golf simulators market overview report shows projected growth of 8.3% over the next few years. Therefore, the golf simulators have great market potential.

To start a golf simulator business, research the options available from different golf simulators and their features. Find a good location for your golf simulators, research the target audience and develop projections.

How much you can make: $25,000 β€” $500,000/month

How I Built A $500K/Month Golf Simulator Business

Australian startup founder Igor built a virtual golf empire selling affordable golf simulators for personal and commercial use, leading to the growth of his e-commerce platform and establishment of an event hire business, all through the power of online networking.

About
Igor started 24/7 Golf over 7 years ago
Revenue
Igor grew the business to $500K/month

18. Start a respirator mask business

How much you can make: $90,000/month

Starting A $90K/Month Respirator Mask Business

In this case study, Michael details:

  • Start: Bought the business for the cost of a car
  • First customers: Focused on a very specific niche, pet groomers
  • Growth: 70% of the sales come from Amazon

Don’t let the naysayers bother you.

19. Start a flight tours business

Starting a flight tour company can provide a great opportunity for aspiring entrepreneurs to turn their passion for aviation into a profitable business.

By offering customized flight experiences and scenic air tours, you can cater to the growing demand in the aerial sightseeing market.

The flight tours business allows you to set your own schedule and provide clients with unique aerial perspectives of beautiful destinations across the country.

With low barriers to entry and strong demand, launching a flight tour company lets you combine your love for flying with the freedom and rewards of entrepreneurship.

How much you can make: $30,000 β€” $1,500,000/month

How long does it take to build: 210 days (?)

How Corey Rust Started A Profitable Flight Tours Business

Envi Adventures, a Troutdale, Oregon-based air tour business, grew from making $7,000 in a month in its first year to over $30,000 a month in its second year, using Instagram and influencer marketing to create an interactive, personalized experience for guests.

About
Corey started Envi Adventures over 6 years ago
Revenue
Corey grew the business to $38K/month
Costs
It cost Corey $300 to start the business

20. Start a hammock brand

Over the past few years, the demand for hammocks has shot up.

The global hammock market is projected to reach $639 million in the next few years.

The demand for hammocks is growing among campers and outdoor enthusiasts due to the ease of installation and use. Hammocks are lightweight and ideal for carrying around when going for outdoor backpacking and hiking trips.

With hammocks' popularity rising, starting a hammock line today can be profitable. To start your hammock business, research the market to find out who uses hammocks more. You can be a hammock maker, a wholesaler, or a retailer.

Register your business and apply for the certificates you need to run a successful venture.

How much you can make: $240 β€” $80,000/month

How much does it cost to start: $49 (?)

On Starting A Handmade Mexican Travel Hammocks Business

Maca founder Ben started a direct-to-consumer handmade Mexican travel hammock business from scratch, generating sales through partnerships with Vanlife and RV communities and utilizing product reviews to build social proof and customer trust.

About
Ben started Maca over 6 years ago
Revenue
Ben grew the business to $240/month

21. Start a discount travel website

Discount travel websites help travelers save on the cost of travel. Besides, discount travel websites help hotels and travel agents achieve full booking and highlight promotions.

More people search for discount offers on travel websites. Thus, starting your discount travel website can be a lucrative business opportunity.

How much you can make: $70,000 β€” $1,500,000/month

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

How I Started A $140K/Month Flights And Holidays Deals Newsletter

I Know The Pilot founder Garth Adams shares how he grew his airfare and accommodation deals newsletter from a simple WordPress site to over 780,000 email subscribers, 110,000 app users, and 550,000 Facebook fans on a 100% free business model, and how he's pivoted domestically during the Covid-19 pandemic.

About
Garth started I Know The Pilot over 7 years ago
Revenue
Garth grew the business to $70K/month
Costs
It cost Garth $1500 to start the business

22. Start a knife sharpening service

Every household has a bunch of knives in it. All those households have dull knives that may need sharpening to serve the owners well. Therefore, there is already a market for your knife sharpening business. To start the business, drive down the road, knock and ask the homeowners if their knives need sharpening.

How much you can make: $1,500 β€” $200,000/month

How We Started A $200K/Month Mail Knife Sharpening Service

Knife Aid, a mail-in knife sharpening service, has seen a steady increase in sales month over month since launching in early 2019 and is now trading at $250,000 per month largely due to the service being "something every American home is in need of," gaining huge PR boosts, and offering a unique supply-and-repair service that requires very low investment.

About
Marc started Knife Aid over 4 years ago
Revenue
Marc grew the business to $200K/month

23. Start a food truck

Food trucks are a highly profitable business that offers customers a variety of meal options out of a mobile truck. This basically operates inside a large vehicle equipped with kitchen and food products. Starting a food truck is a dream for many people, but it's more challenging than it looks. To make it work, you need the ideal location and menu.

To start a food truck business in a particular city, it is mandatory to check what kind of food trucks are already operating, identify a gap, and bring in some new experiences. Then, with the right plan and the right approach, you can be on your way to starting your own food truck empire.

How much you can make: $29,166 β€” $61,650,000/month

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

Time commitment per week: Min. 5 hours/week

How I Took Food Trucks Corporate And Built A $18M Business

Food Fleet grew over 160% in just one year and managed over 20 million in sales for its clients, securing multiple contracts with the likes of Sodexo, Levy Restaurants and more, due to its understanding of catering client needs and its advanced turnkey and design services.

About
Jeffrey started Food Fleet almost 12 years ago
Revenue
Jeffrey grew the business to $1.5M/month

24. Become an interior designer

Interior designing involves making indoor spaces safe, functional, and beautiful by determining space requirements and selecting essential & decorative items such as colors, lighting, and materials.

The global luxury interior design market is growing at a CAGR of 9.0%. The growth metrics show there is great potential for entrepreneurs targeting households.

If you are starting a luxury interior design business, focus on style and specialty. Add valuables with creative professions, such as interior design, so you stand out from the rest. Ensure you hire the right people and hone the brand identity.

How much you can make: $100,000 β€” $415,000/month

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

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

How We (Mother And Daughter) Started A $1M/Year Boutique Design Firm

Mother and daughter duo turn passion for antiques and design into a boutique design firm with over $1 million in annual revenue and hundreds of trophy projects, showcasing the importance of grit, determination, and passion in building a successful business.

About
Annemarie started diSalvo Interiors almost 27 years ago
Revenue
Annemarie grew the business to $110K/month

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.