13 Freelance Business Ideas for Aspiring Entrepreneurs in 2024

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The Top Freelance Business Ideas of 2024

Want to be your own boss, but not sure if any of your freelance business ideas will take off?

All of us full-time freelancers know the feeling.

When you’re a beginner, it can be seriously nerve-wracking to dive into a new full-time career or even just start a side job.

But with elbow grease and patience (and financial know-how), all of you aspiring entrepreneurs can make your business dreams a reality.

These days, many different types of work can be done remotely and online, so you won’t need to change your whole lifestyle for a new gig.

If you’re in need of a little inspiration to spark your own journey to self-employment, we’ve made a list of 13 freelance business ideas to provide you with a starting point.

But the possibilities are endless — you might get inspired to come up with something totally new.

Writer

I freelance write and edit full-time, so I might be a little biased, but I view writing as one of the most freelance-friendly careers out there.

You don’t need much besides your laptop, internet connection, and word processor of choice, so you can work anywhere at any time.

Countless clients are in dire need of well-written content for product listings, blog posts, technical manuals, and much more.

If you have a solid writing resume and portfolio (bonus points for additional certifications), you can find gigs on many different websites.

Video Editor

Those of you who have video editing software and know how to use it can often find freelance work fairly easily.

You can create anything from videos for a new YouTuber to safety presentations for corporations — there are countless unexpected opportunities out there.

Video editing software isn’t free, of course, so you might want to do some research and confirm your interest in the field before you decide to make the investment.

But on the upside, if you need help to get started, many open online courses can teach you the ropes.

Social Media Manager

It may sound as easy as posting a few photos to Instagram or videos to TikTok, but being a social media manager is much more than that.

You might be responsible for creating new ad campaigns, monitoring traffic, and, above all, producing a near-constant stream of content.

With that in mind, it’s not surprising that social media managers are in high demand.

Many companies hire remotely for this role, so if you’re skilled at all of the above and you’re searching for a new part- or full-time contract, you likely won’t have to look for very long.

Product Photography

Before you think, “I can do this on my iPhone!” you should know what it entails.

Product photographers need camera equipment that shoots high-res pics, plus a studio space (even if it’s small) and lighting.

Then there’s everything in post, like editing and quality control.

Of course, this will all incur some significant up-front costs.

But if you consider yourself a talented photographer and you have some fun, creative staging ideas for different products, get to work on creating a portfolio and seek out brands who may want to work with you.

Web Designer

In the internet era, just about everyone needs a well-designed website — even us freelancers.

Basically, web designers are in charge of making sure a website functions well and looks good, which means understanding both visual appeal and the technology used to create it.

Talented web designers with coding and HTML skills are highly sought after, and you can find dozens of different gigs posted on the internet.

If you have trouble landing web design jobs, though, consider beefing up your toolbox by taking online courses and certifications.

Travel Agent

Yes, it’s still possible to find work as a travel agent.

Even in the age of Google Flights and Booking.com, many travelers do want a dedicated, experienced professional to plan their itinerary, reserve their tickets, and book their lodging for a stress-free vacation.

To that end, many travel companies and even private individuals will hire freelance travel agents.

You’ll have to put in some good, old-fashioned customer service, but hey, you may get to visit some dream destinations for discounted rates (or for free) as part of your job.

Virtual Assistant

A virtual assistant is something of a catch-all job.

There are virtual assistants who are in charge of financial planning, who help organize files and arrange schedules, who make and manage phone calls (including fielding those pesky customer service requests).

Being a virtual assistant often means wearing multiple hats.

So, if you’re good at different administrative tasks, someone may pay you to help them with said tasks.

You don’t typically need specific training for these jobs, but you should at least have strong digital skills.

Data Analyst

Responsible for compiling and inspecting data to find useful information, data analysts are paid some of the highest rates of any remote workers.

Granted, most of those rates apply to full-time employees or contractors — part-time data analysis work can be scarce.

At a minimum, data analysts need to know their way around common data visualization tools, programming languages, and statistics.

That may sound like a lot, but if you already have one or more of these down, you can take courses on the others to round out your skillset.

Graphic Designer

Just about every company and publication needs graphic designers to create fresh logos, work up ad campaigns, lay out informational materials, and much more.

If you’ve seen an impressive online visual recently, chances are, a graphic designer had a hand in making it.

Graphic designers typically work by hand and on computer software like Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to craft these visuals.

Those programs don’t come cheap, but fresh ideas are at the heart of graphic design and creative types often thrive in this career path.

Landscape Architect

This one is a bit more niche, but it goes to show that there’s a market for everything — even remote landscape architecture.

I’ve seen not one, but two friends find online work in this field (pun intended), so the demand does exist, as long as you know where to look.

You’ll need more than design inspo to succeed, though.

Horticultural knowledge will help you create designs that not only look good, but also meld with your clients’ local landscapes (drought-friendly yards in California, for example).

Strong communication is also crucial.

AI Trainer

Whether we like it or not, there’s now a huge demand for people to help train artificial intelligence.

Basically, when users put in requests, trainers evaluate the AI’s response for accuracy, comprehensibility, and sensitivity, and give feedback for it to use in the future.

Some AI training roles require coding and data analysis, while others only focus on the nuances and grammar of AI text, so you’ll have to be picky while job hunting.

Oh, and per a friend who does this full time, you may have to read some… interesting requests and responses.

Arts & Crafts Instructor

Artists are increasingly making and selling online classes as an alternative to peddling handmade goods on the internet, though the two usually go hand in hand.

You can either build up your own following and reputation, or provide courses through a paid site like Teachable.

As with all kinds of online instruction, you’ll need a decent video setup to make this one work (nobody wants to watch a blurry tutorial).

You should also do plenty of research to see what other instructors offer, and determine which unique skills you can teach in contrast.

Personal Trainer

Believe it or not, there is a sizable and growing demand for remote personal trainers.

Some fitness companies hire full-time or contract trainers, but you can also start your own online personal training biz with the right combination of skills, persistence, and marketing.

This makes for a great side gig — a friend of mine has a full-time job and creates tailored workout plans for clients during her off hours.

You’ll need certifications or degrees to be taken seriously, but some can be acquired online if you already have fitness experience.

Conclusion

Starting a freelance business is about more than just good ideas, of course.

But these 13 potential side hustles should provide at least a little inspiration for freelancing beginners and aspiring entrepreneurs who want to test the waters of self-employment.

Even if you’re just looking for a remote, online side hustle rather than a career change, you can create numerous different opportunities for yourself.

Emphasis on “create” — starting your own freelance business won’t be easy, but the rewards may be well worth the effort.

For those who are still on the fence, go back to the drawing board.

Take some time to brainstorm not only business concepts, but also ways to sustain and, better yet, grow your business over time.

Once you’re confident in your game plan, you’re ready to take the plunge.


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