“A list of best business ideas for couples? But I thought starting a business with my significant other was a bad idea?”
Whether you’ve been dating for 6 months or have been married for 30 years, it all boils down to whether or not your partner is as committed to the business idea as you are. If either you or your partner doesn’t truly believe in the business model that’s being presented, then starting a business together will indeed be a bad idea.
Here are a couple of tips and business ideas for couples for starting a business with your significant other.
Find a niche where your passions align. If a compromise needs to be made, then make it so that both of you are giving a little. It’s important to find that middle ground.
As a couple starting a business, you need to have the same interests, goals, and objectives. Find something that the both of you can enjoy. Doing otherwise is a recipe for disaster and can lead to resentment, unhappiness, and feeling undervalued.
Why start a business that’s going to make either of you miserable?
Learn to compartmentalize work issues from personal issues. The last thing you want when working together is entangling your business issues with your personal issues, which guarantees failure for your business. I’ve learned three important things working with my wife over the last few years:
Now that we’ve gotten some of the mindset logistics out of the way, let’s dig into the fun stuff. Here are the 7 best business ideas for couples to start, whether it be a side hustle or full-time venture.
We can all agree that buying stuff online and having it delivered to your doorstep is very convenient. Even though you’re paying slightly more, you appreciate the value of not having to leave your home or interrupt your day with a trip to the store.
You’re not the only one.
People are willing to pay a little extra for the sake of convenience. This is what makes e-commerce so powerful and successful.
In its simplest form, e-commerce is the sale of physical products online, but it can also describe any kind of commercial transaction that is facilitated through the internet. While businesses like Amazon and eBay are the most popular and biggest examples of successful e-commerce companies, there are other revenue models in the e-commerce industry. In fact, here are the most recent trends in the e-commerce industry.
Dropshipping is the simplest form of e-commerce. You act as the middleman, connecting the supplier to the consumer, and never handle the product because the supplier directly ships the product to the consumer. Dropshipping eliminates the need for managing inventory and warehouse stock, which results in a low overhead cost.
Websites like Shopify.com and AliExpress.com are the go-to platforms for establishing a dropshipping business. For a small fee, you can quickly set up your own online shop and get started. Another option that’s beginning to take root these days is setting up shop on Facebook and using Facebook Ads to drive traffic to a business page.
Although the outrageously low overhead cost is the major advantage to dropshipping, it’s contrasted by the low profit margins. Since the products people purchase are individually bought by you and not in bulk, you won’t get the absolute rock-bottom prices from the supplier – you’ll only skim the top of the wholesaler’s profits.
Another disadvantage to dropshipping is that if the product quality is lower than expected, or there is a problem with the order, YOU’LL be held responsible, not the supplier.
If you want to explore the idea of creating a dropshipping business further, read this article on How to Make Money Dropshipping Using AliExpress and Shopify.
Wholesaling and warehousing is the opposite of dropshipping and takes a more traditional approach to e-commerce. With this model, you purchase products in bulk to get the lowest price available, store the products in a warehouse, and sell them individually at a mark-up.
This is a time-tested and a proven method to earn a steady stream of income. However, it should go without saying that wholesaling and warehousing will require a large amount of start-up capital and time investment.
Responsibilities will include:
You may consider selling products per unit in addition to the traditional wholesale model to potentially earn a higher profit margin.
Remember: when starting a wholesaling and warehousing business, volume is key.
This business model provides ongoing services or products on a regular basis in exchange for regular payments from the customer. The subscription type of business model has a relatively reliable income stream. It easily encourages customers to purchase additional subscriptions or spread the word about your service.
Generally, there are three main types of e-commerce subscription services:
Starting an e-commerce business may seem challenging, but don’t forget that you’ll have your partner by your side. Through properly dividing labor and responsibilities between the two of you, the individual workload will be greatly reduced.
If you think blogging is dead, think again. Lately, the number of bloggers who are earning five-figure monthly incomes are multiplying. Although this is no easy feat, it’s definitely not impossible. Given the right mindset and guidance, you too can earn a substantial income from blogging. Working with your partner will make things more manageable over time.
Starting a blog in a definitive niche presents a lot of opportunities for an income stream. Starting a food business or e-commerce business? Offering freelance services? Start a blog in tandem — it’ll help your income grow exponentially.
One of the common mistakes that’s made when starting a blog is using a free platform like Wix, Blogger, etc. Here are several disadvantages to using a free platform:
Even though costs are nonexistent with a free website platform in the beginning, there’s a high likelihood that you won’t earn anything during the lifespan of your blog.
Starting a blog doesn’t have to be expensive, though. In a recent article I wrote titled “How Much Does it Really Cost to Start a Blog?” I concluded that starting a blog business only needs to cost ~$70 in the first year. This is made possible by our partnership with Bluehost (affiliate link) which allows you to get started with the absolutely lowest prices available.
If you’re planning to start a blog, check out our comprehensive and in-depth guide that tackles the 8 Essential Steps to Start a Blog Business and Make Money.
Offering your services online is a great way to make money, especially if you have the appropriate skill set. Since you’re just starting out, the profit margins won’t be that big — yet. For that reason, it’s best to treat freelance services as a side business for the time being.
Depending on the skills you and your partner possess, there are a ton of freelance opportunities available on UpWork, Fiverr, Cloudpeeps, etc. A blog promoting your freelance services can also greatly multiply your income margins.
If you LOVE writing, why not make money from it?
Freelance copywriters write blogs, FAQs, and pages for websites. As a freelance copywriter, you’ll write for businesses and help them promote and market their brand or services.
How is this a good avenue for a couple, though?
Having a second person edit and proofread content is an advantage in any writing venture. One person can be in charge of writing while the other person takes care of edits. Perhaps both partners could write and edit each other’s works – a perfect recipe for success! Having either you or your partner fill the role of editor would be greatly beneficial to your business.
Although hourly wages at the start may be on the low end, creating an attractive writing portfolio and branding yourself as an expert has the potential to secure an income significantly higher than your full-time job.
Graphic design gets easier when working with a partner. If either of you has a formal background in graphic design, it will definitely come in handy! If you don’t have the foundation yet but have the passion to learn, it’s relatively easy to study the basics of graphic design through online courses. The tools you’ll mainly use are Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, and/or Adobe Illustrator.
The way to approach working with a partner here is by communicating ideas with each other. Take on different projects individually, but work as a team. Your insights will forever be valuable to each other, especially if both of you are proficient in graphic design.
There is a demand for graphic designers in every corner of the urban world. If you ever get the chance, check in with local businesses in your area to see if they’re in the market for a graphic designer who can design posters, banners, flyers, or other marketing materials.
A lot of companies require a social media presence because it’s the main driving factor for their traffic. The retail and travel industries rely heavily on social media, but the people who benefit the most from social media are the influencers who require a big presence for their success.
If you’re familiar with managing social media pages, you know that it’s not as easy as it seems. As a social media manager, these are some of the tasks you’ll be doing on behalf of your clients:
All these tasks will contribute to the company’s ultimate goal of increasing the number of followers. As you can see, there are quite a lot of responsibilities and it can get overwhelming. Working with your significant other allows for the opportunity to divvy up some of those responsibilities according to each of your strengths. This ensures that everything will move as smoothly as oil.
Social media management is best considered as a part-time venture in the beginning, but its promise begins to show once you’ve built a brand. Once you start handling big companies, then joining forces with your partner will definitely help with the workload.
If either you or your partner is an expert in a specific subject matter, then creating an online course may be a viable option. Yes, creating an online course is definitely a daunting task – but working with a partner will lighten the load. Both you and your significant other should cover topics you’re each knowledgeable about. If both of you work on the same topic, it’s important to hear each other out and provide valuable insight and input to help make the course even stronger.
If you decide to go down this path, remember: it’s important to create a course about a topic you’re an expert in or have a vast knowledge-base in. People will be looking to find value in your course, and you WILL have to provide it. If people pay for your product, you better deliver.
With that being said, the following are the three biggest challenges I faced when creating my online course, challenges that would have been more manageable if I’d had a partner.
The number of topics that you’ll cover when creating an online course is overwhelming – trust me. Organizing a course in the most logical, step-by-step format that gives your members the value that makes your product worth purchasing is one of the biggest difficulties I faced when creating my course.
Your course needs to be set up so that members can progress easily and in the correct order. It needs to ensure that they go from where they started to where your course promises to take them.
Another challenge you may face is filling in ALL the gaps and teaching down to the absolute finest detail (including necessary examples to explain highly complex ideas). This is where even the best product publishers often fail – it leaves their clients/members feeling lost & stranded. Remember that people tend to lose interest and abandon a course if it gets too complex. Teach what’s necessary, but don’t venture too far into the weeds. Create a new course to cover more details if necessary. After all, the more courses you offer, the more streams of revenue you could have.
Once you start making sales, customer service and educational support become a big thorn in your side if you’re unprepared. That’s why it’s important to build an infrastructure for supporting the course from the beginning.
Refunds, chargebacks, and angry customers will make up a small percentage of sales for even the best product publishers. It can really spike stress levels and be difficult to handle these situations when you’re getting started, but a good customer support system helps mitigate these issues when they arise.
It’s noteworthy that nothing described above is considered part of the “technical setup.” Although challenging, it’s FAR from the most challenging aspect of being a product publisher. For anyone who wants to create and preserve a strong reputation in any industry for the long-term, are important components to flesh out from the get-go.
House-flipping is the act of buying a worn-down home or property for a low price and remodeling it with the intention of selling it for a profit. If you and your partner’s interests include decorating, construction and architecture, the world of house flipping might suit you both.
There are a few things to consider before starting a house-flipping business, though.
Buying a property is never cheap, used or not. House flipping requires huge start-up capital and a lot of effort due to renovations. It may turn a hefty profit, but there’s always the risk of losing a lot of money.
This business venture is suitable for couples who can comfortably invest $15,000 to $500,000 (USD) in start-up capital.
How much cash are you working with? How much can you afford for the initial investments?
Real estate investors categorize properties into 4 classifications:
Each property classification projects a different risk and return because the properties are graded according to a combination of geographical and physical factors.
It’s important to study the properties in each class carefully and decide what suits you and your partner best. Class B or C properties may be the best place to get started if you want to get the most value and profit from your investment. Properties within these classes pose low-risk and have less liabilities than Class D properties.
If you and your partner have something you’re really passionate and skilled about and feel that creating an online course would be too overwhelming for the both of you, consider offering your services with one-on-one online coaching instead. It’s one of the most reliable side businesses that leverage both of your skill sets.
If you and your partner have been married for many years, marriage coaching could be a great option, especially if you have the desire to help new couples achieve their long-term relationship and life goals. There are many young couples who are seeking help with restoring confidence in their relationship. Wouldn’t it feel rewarding if you were guiding them to success in terms of their marriage?
This business idea for couples is not only about the skill of being a coach, but also about building a community from the help you’re offering and trust you’re building with your members. Creating the space for that community can be as simple as setting up a private Facebook group.
The food industry can be the perfect option for couples who are wanting to start a business together. There’s plenty of opportunities: manage a restaurant, start a catering business, or even start a food truck. When running a restaurant, for example, one person could handle all the kitchen affairs while the other could take charge of everything to do with the front of the house.
Regardless of which business you establish, the crucial factor that affects success in the food industry is reputation. A blemished reputation is hard to bounce back from, especially if you’re trying to bring in new customers. That’s why integrity is crucial – you’ll need to learn how to address customer service issues quickly.
The most important step to starting any business is having a solid business plan. It needs to be feasible and efficient. The following are questions you and your partner should ask when fleshing out a business plan:
These are just a few concepts to keep in mind when coming up with a business plan – there are a lot more to consider when you actually sit down and map it out (a quick google search can give you an idea of what else you and your partner deem important to add to your business plan). You will both have to dedicate time and resources to come up with a solid plan.
Venture into starting a food blog or creating meal boxes that can be ordered online to add more streams of revenue once your business takes off.
Don’t be surprised if there are a lot of permits and licenses that need to be complied with — including applicable health and safety codes, as well as other food service regulations. You’re dealing with products that people consume, after all.
Food service licenses vary depending on the type of food business you launch. For example, a food truck will require a different food service license than a restaurant because of its mobility.
Once you’re up and running, it’s extremely crucial to follow existing food service health and safety practices. Take every precaution to ensure that your employees are properly trained to follow all the mandated food service laws.
There are definitely other business ideas for couples out there, but deciding what to pursue all boils down to what your collective expertise and knowledge are. It’s important that you and your significant other both fully believe in the business model you wish to pursue. With that said, here’s a summary of the 7 best business ideas for couples:
When I started working with my wife, I was afraid that I would introduce a new element into our marriage. I didn’t want her to feel like she wasn’t my equal because my skillset and contribution to the business technically make me “the boss.”
It’s imperative to divide the tasks to cater to each of your strengths because then you won’t have to worry about managing each other. Creating a structure that establishes each of you as equals prevents a power dynamic. The more you can respect that balance, the easier it’ll be to work together. The more you violate that, the more it’s going to take a toll.
Starting a business together will require you to handle difficult conversations well. A conversation about contracts is a good example of a difficult business partnership conversation. How you handle this conversation will reflect how future conversations about your business may go.
I highly recommend you get the conversation about contracts (if you choose to protect yourselves in that way) out of the way as soon as possible. It will be an elephant in the room and will nag at you both until it’s discussed. While it can become an emotionally charged conversation, it’s important to work out a contract before you get years down the road and wish you had established those parameters from day one.
Just like in any relationship, the number one factor in a successful partnership is communication. So…
Sit down and talk about it.
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