The number of female entrepreneurs is growing rapidly. In fact, in 2021, 49% of new businesses were started by women, up from 28% in 2019, according to a survey by HR services company Gusto. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, in 2020, 21.4% of all U.S. businesses were owned by women, and those businesses employed 10.9 million employees.
Those are staggering numbers and represent how women are advancing in an area that has long been dominated by men.
If you are considering joining the ranks of female entrepreneurs, this article has you covered with some great businesses to start in 2023.
Criteria for Selecting a Business
The type of business you start depends on what’s important to you and your goals, but there are a few factors that you might want to take into consideration.
You should do some research on the types of businesses you’re interested in to see the size of the market and whether it’s growing or declining. You don’t want to get into a market that’s on its way to being obsolete. You can easily find that kind of information online.
Low Startup Costs
Startup costs are often an issue, but there are many types of businesses that you can start for very little, particularly if you’re interested in a home-based business. There are also financing options, such as SBA loans, that can help you get the capital you need to get started.
Women are often trying to juggle work and family, so you may want to choose a business that allows you to work flexible hours or to work at home. It will help you to maintain a work-life balance that doesn’t keep you from missing out on personal or family time.
Top Businesses for 2023
We’ve identified ten businesses that are great for women entrepreneurs to start in 2023.
Ecommerce was already booming before the pandemic, but now it’s literally exploding! In 2021, global ecommerce sales grew to more than $5.2 trillion – yes trillion. Ecommerce also offers literally thousands of options in terms of what you can sell and where. You can essentially pick any product that interests you and that has a large target market and sell it from your own website or on sites like Amazon or Shopify.
If you’re crafty, you could even make your own products and sell them on Etsy.
If you’re going to buy products from a manufacturer to resell, you can even eliminate the need to purchase and hold inventory by finding a manufacturer that offers dropshipping. Dropshipping means that when you get an order from a customer, you then place the order with the manufacturer, and they ship the product directly to your customer.
You can also run an ecommerce business all from the comfort of your own home!
Social Media Management
If you have experience with social media and social media marketing, you could start a social media management business. You’d be managing the social media accounts of businesses by posting and running ads for them. Part of this would be helping the businesses to develop an overall social media strategy based on their industry type and target market.
Typically, social media management companies charge between $50 and $100, so once you build up your clientele, you’ll be making a fair amount of money. The social media management market was valued at more than $14 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow to over $41 billion by 2026, so you’d also be getting in on the action of a hot market.
You could run your business fully online, so you’d have potential customers all over the country.
If you have a particular skill like writing or graphic design, you could become a freelancer. The number of freelancers is growing rapidly, with more than 70 million people in the U.S. freelancing in 2023. How much you make depends on your particular skill, and could range anywhere from $20 to $100 per hour.
Many online sites, such as Upwork, have continuous freelance gig postings, and also allow you to post your profile and experience so that people can invite you to apply for their gigs.
Freelancing gives you much flexibility. You can choose which jobs to take, set your own rates, and work on your own time.
More and more people are turning to online classes to enhance their skills and knowledge. Revenue from online education is projected to exceed $166 billion in 2023, and continue to grow at nearly 10% per year for the foreseeable future.
There are several online sites that allow you to post your own course curriculum and charge a fee to students, so if you have a particular area of specialty, you could create your own courses and design them any way that you choose.
Most of these courses are self-study, so once your curriculum is created and posted, you’ll have to do little but answer questions and give feedback on assignments.
If you have business or technology experience, you could start a consulting company, helping businesses improve various functions and processes such as management, operations, or cybersecurity. Management consulting in particular is a huge industry, valued at nearly $330 billion in 2023.
Consulting often requires in-person work, so you’d have to network with local business owners and market locally to find clients. The rate you can charge depends on the type of consulting that you do, but the average rate is $100 per hour and can be even higher, depending on your experience and the complexity of the work that you do.
Are you that person whose closets look like something out of a magazine? It takes true skill to make that happen, and it’s a skill that many people don’t have, which is where you could come in. You could organize anything from closets to basements to garages, and make $50 an hour or more.
You can even get a professional organizers certification from the National Association of Productivity & Organizing Professionals to give you more credibility. Doing so could also help you to justify commanding a higher hourly rate.
The ranks of women in technology is growing, which offers a world of opportunity if you have technology experience or want to continue your education. App development is just one of many technology business options that are available.
You have a few options – you could create your own app to monetize, or you can have a business creating apps for other entrepreneurs who have app ideas but no technology experience.
The world these days is driven by apps, so you’d be jumping on a fast-moving train, with the mobile app industry projected to grow by more than 13% per year through 2030.
It’s a digital world, with a growing number of people finding companies and products online, which makes digital marketing big business. Globally, $616 billion was spent on digital advertising in 2022, so clearly digital marketers are in demand.
Starting a digital marketing agency takes experience in the field, but you should have no trouble finding clients, with most companies doing at least some of their marketing digitally. Digital marketing agencies can command up to $500 per hour, or monthly rates of $10,000 or more.
A digital marketing agency is also a business that has unlimited potential for growth.
Okay, a laundromat doesn’t sound very glamorous, but investing in a laundromat can bring in a significant amount of passive income because you’d rarely have to be there. It’s a $6 billion industry in the U.S. and the average laundromat makes about $500 a day. Not bad for a passive income!
It will take an investment and could cost anywhere from $50,000 to $100,000 or more to get started, but no experience is required and you could just consider it a side gig while you pursue another business venture.
It’s surprisingly easy to become a real estate agent or broker. You can often just take online classes for about six to eight weeks, pass the test in your state, and get your license. You’ll have to spend some time and money to market yourself, but you can make 2% to 7% of the purchase price of each home that you sell.
Alternatively, you could start a real estate investing company and buy homes either to flip or to rent. Rental properties are another way to make a good passive income, particularly if you hire a management company to take care of your units and deal with tenants for you.
Follow Your Passion
While these business ideas are all great, it’s often your best bet to follow your passion and do something that you love. You need to be happy, and the money you’ll make is just a bonus. Some of the best businesses started as hobbies, so if you consider what you really like to do, it may help you come up with an idea.
Entrepreneurship can be extremely rewarding, particularly for women who want to be in control of their own destinies and not have to answer to anyone. Don’t be afraid to go for it and follow your entrepreneurial dreams. Whatever business you choose, if you do your homework and work hard, you can be successful.