At first glance, stay-at-home moms and home-based businesses look like a match made in heaven.
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But while some home businesses work well for moms, others prove to be incompatible with the demands of parenting. To avoid disaster, you need to identify a business concept capable of balancing your entrepreneurial ambitions with your responsibilities in the home.
Stay-at-home moms face a unique set of challenges when it comes to launching a business at home. While other business owners can afford the luxury of shaping their life around their business, moms are forced to find a way to shape their business around their busy lives. Although reconciling business and family demands can be difficult, with a little ingenuity it is possible to find a business that can be adapted to fit your schedule and lifestyle.
Many moms find that a consulting business is a natural fit with their interests and abilities, especially if the career field they left routinely hires independent contractors. Some consulting relationships can be just as demanding as a full-time career. However, with an increasing number of women pursuing motherhood after achieving success in their careers, employers are becoming more open to allowing consultant moms to do most of their work from home.
The internet provides a ready-made resource for moms who are interested in launching a business from home. If you already own a computer start up costs are low, and internet businesses give you the freedom to work around your schedule. But moms who choose an internet-based business concept need to be prepared to enter a highly competitive business environment. The number of moms who choose online businesses is so high that you need to be on the top of your game to succeed.
Before the internet, network marketing opportunities were the most popular business option for stay-at-home moms. Even now, they continue to be popular because they are so successful, with nearly $20 billion in annual sales. The key is to find a company and a line of products that interests you since your passion will be the driving force behind your bottom line. Also, relationship-based selling and sales "parties" are part of the deal, so if you aren't comfortable introducing a business element into your personal relationships, this is probably not the right kind of business for you.
Third-party business opportunities are essentially resale business models in which you purchase products or equipment from a third-party in order to operate your business. The initial investment for these types of businesses tends to be higher than other home-based businesses. For example, a snack vending machine business requires an initial investment of machines and supplies before you make your first dollar. Some third-party businesses have also proven themselves to be less than reputable, so it is imperative to do your research and decide whether the potential profits are worth the upfront investment.