Starting a Home-Based Business
5 Tips for Seniors
A home-based business empowers and elevates seniors interested in earning extra income during retirement. Many seniors think starting a home-based business is complex and stressful — and it can be — but there are also many benefits. With resources on everything from wellness to entertainment, Gracefully Greying can guide you through the basics of starting a business in retirement. Here are five tips.
Find your niche.
Some seniors get their business started by taking a hobby, craft, or passion to the next level. Others use their professional expertise to carve a name as a consultant or contractor. Whatever your business idea, the best way to make it work is to find a niche, filling a need or role that not many people or companies can. For example, use your knowledge of markets and sales to launch a profitable e-commerce business that leads to passive income.
Life coach and Gracefully Greying contributor Lori Eber says that it can be tempting to let inertia guide us through life and business. By following her own niche, she started a thriving business by combining her profession and passion — and you can certainly take a leaf out of her book.
Sharpen your business know-how by learning skills online.
Many colleges and universities give seniors discounts to help them earn a degree or build new skills. In addition, there are also tuition assistance programs for people over 65. On top of that, more and more colleges provide online instruction, so you can earn a degree or certification or take a few business courses without even leaving your home.
Focus on earning a degree in an area of business, like accounting, marketing, or business ethics. These can benefit your bottom line, no matter what industry you’re in.
Use small business financial resources.
To grow or support a business idea, research small business loans and grants that are specifically designed for senior-owned businesses. Entrepreneur reminds us to look to banks, credit cards, private lenders, or investors to help finance your business ventures.
Don’t let money add to any stress or anxiety that can pile up in your golden years. So research the opportunities available to seniors to help offset some of your startup costs — you’d be surprised what’s out there to help you launch your business idea without incurring debt.
Market yourself to your audience.
According to Qualtrics, 97 percent of people shop online, even if they plan on making their final purchase in person. Small businesses need to engage customers online. Put some extra thought into your website — making sure it is user-friendly, informative, and optimized to help people find you in a Google search.
Focus on your social media presence, too. No matter how uninterested in Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat you may be, you might need to have an active presence on some of them. Fortunately, you can hire freelancers who can manage that business aspect for you.
Design a distraction-free home office.
When setting up a home-based business during retirement, it is important to have distinct lines between work and play. Design a home office that promotes work-life balance by being separate and apart from the rest of the home. Next, think about necessities: Do you have wifi access, enough storage, or a restroom close by? These may sound irrelevant — and maybe they will be, at first. But as your business grows, you will want to have answers to these questions pretty quick.
Gracefully Greying knows there are many ways for seniors to feel empowered, from launching a business to financial planning. Check out the site for available resources that can guide you through the detailed legal, financial, and even mental health aspects of starting a business at this stage in your life.
-Gracefully Greying contributing writer Hazel Bridges, agingwellness.org