Are you looking for website ideas to launch a side business in the new year?
There are tons of opportunities online with profitable website ideas that you can easily transform into a sustainable side income.
In this article, we’ll share the best website ideas to launch this year. We’ll also show you how to easily get started without a big investment.
What You Need to Put Website Ideas into Action
It is a common myth that you need to be tech-savvy or a programmer to start a website. This was probably true in the 90s, but these days you don’t need any special skills to build a website.
Here is what you actually need to make a website:
- A domain name. This will be your website’s address on the internet, e.g. wpbeginner.com).
- Web hosting account. This will be your website’s home and where you’ll store all your website files
- A website builder. We recommend using WordPress.org which is the best website builder powering more than 39% of all websites on the internet.
We recommend using Bluehost to make your website. They are one of the biggest hosting companies in the world and are officially recommended by WordPress.
They are offering WPBeginner users a generous 60% off discount on hosting with a free domain name and free SSL certificate. Basically, you can launch a website for $2.75 per month.
→ Click Here to Claim This Exclusive Bluehost Offer ←
They automatically install WordPress for you, and you can quickly start working on your website idea with in minutes. If you need more help, then follow the steps in our WordPress installation guide to set up your website.
That being said, let’s take a look at some of the most profitable website ideas to launch this year and turn them into a viable business.
Here is a quick list of website ideas that we’ll talk about. You can jump to the one that you find interesting or read as you scroll along.
1. Start a Personal Website / Blog
Blogs are a popular website idea that has been around for some time and still going strong. Entrepreneurs like Darren Rowse, John Lee Dumas, and Pat Flynn all started as bloggers and are now making six-figure incomes.
Our company’s CEO, Syed Balkhi, started this blog that led him to build an eight-figure business (see: WPBeginner income).
Launching a blog is pretty easy, and it can be on any topic that you are passionate about. The benefit of starting a blog is that you can later use it as a platform to launch many other website ideas.
There are also a ton of monetization options that make blogging a profitable website idea. You can use programs like Google AdSense to display ads, promote affiliate products, sell direct advertisements, or you can even sell your own products to your readers such as online courses, eBooks, etc.
Need help? See our step by step how to start a blog tutorial where we walk you through every step of the way.
If you need expert help, then we also offer a free WordPress blog setup service where one of our WordPress experts will set up your blog for you.
2. Build an Online Store
Another booming website idea is to build an eCommerce store. A lot of folks think that it is probably too technical to get started, which is not exactly true.
You can easily start selling things online with WooCommerce. It is the world’s most popular eCommerce platform that runs on top of WordPress.
It is super easy to use and allows you to sell any type of digital, virtual, or physical products that need shipping. You can easily accept online payments using PayPal, Stripe, or many other payment services.
For step by step instructions, you can follow our beginner’s guide on how to start an online store.
Need ideas on what to sell on your store? See our tutorial on how to source products to sell online.
3. Make a Membership Website
Another popular website idea that is getting a lot of momentum is to create a membership-based website.
Basically, you restrict access to some content on your website that is only available for paid members. This could be an online course, members-only forums, audio or video content, or anything else.
The easiest way to do this is by using MemberPress. It is a WordPress membership plugin that helps you create subscriptions, restrict access, and sell membership plans on your website.
For details, follow our tutorial on how to make a membership website with step by step instructions.
4. Sell Online Courses
Creating and selling online courses is another popular website idea that is growing really fast.
This growing website niche is fueled by the modern gig economy where people need to learn new skills to find new jobs, improve existing skillsets, or just learn something new as a hobby.
MemberPress is the best WordPress LMS plugin that allows you to easily create and sell online courses on your website.
5. Create a Dropshipping Website
Dropshipping is another growing website idea that you can launch without much investment. A dropshipping store is an online store where you sell products, but they are shipped directly by the vendor.
This saves you from the hassle of managing and storing stuff, keeping up inventory, and shipping things. It also allows you to sell a wide-variety of products.
For more details, see our step by step guide on how to create a dropshipping business for beginners.
6. Make an Affiliate Website
One of the most popular website ideas is to start an affiliate website.
Affiliate marketing is a referral arrangement in which an online retailer (advertiser) pays you a commission when users purchase their product from your referral link.
This is a massive industry which means you can make a niche affiliate website and start building upon it. You can find affiliate programs in nearly every industry.
For example: you can create a website that’s focused entirely on reviewing all the newest women’s handbags, new internet routers, new smartphones, etc.
When users make a purchase based on your recommendation, you get a referral fee.
For a more in-depth discussion, see our beginner’s guide to affiliate marketing which has step by step instructions for new affiliate marketers.
7. Launch a Fashion Blog
Fashion and lifestyle is another profitable website idea that has a ton of potential. There are a lot of fashion bloggers and influencers making six-figure incomes.
You can make money through display ads, affiliate marketing, Instagram partnerships with brands, and more.
With WordPress, you can add all the tools you need to grow your brand. You can use connect your Instagram feed, Youtube videos, find fashion website themes, use advertising plugins, and more.
For details, see our tutorial on how to start a fashion blog and promote it the right way.
8. Start a Travel Website
Making a travel blog is another great website idea that is easy to implement and build upon.
You can be an experienced traveler, vlogger, or marketer promoting different tourist destinations. You can monetize using display ads, travel partnerships, earning perks, and more.
Influential travel bloggers are using their travel blogs to launch different products and making significant passive income.
For more on this, don’t forget to check out our article on how to make a travel website using WordPress.
9. Make a Food / Recipes Website
Food and recipe websites are already a popular website idea with plenty of room for new websites.
You can easily start a blog or website, share recipes, discuss food, health, or other related topics. Most recipe websites make money through ads, affiliate marketing, and by selling membership subscriptions.
WordPress comes with plugins that allow you to easily write recipes in SEO friendly format. For details, you can follow our tutorial on how to create a food website and make money online.
10. Start a Podcast Website
Podcasting is another popular website idea that you can launch. It is a fast-growing niche with tons of monetization options.
A podcast is an episodic series of audio files that users can subscribe to download and listen to.
Successful podcasters are making significant money online through sponsorships, advertisements, selling products, and more. It does require a little bit of hardware and some practice with recording and uploading files.
We have a comprehensive guide on starting a podcast website with step by step instructions.
We also have a list of the best podcast hosting platforms to help you succeed.
11. Start a Job Hunt Website
Another popular website idea is to create a job hunt website. It is easy to monetize, and you make money based on user-generated content.
Basically, a job board website allows companies to post job listings and facilitate job seekers by browsing and searching for jobs.
There are WordPress plugins that help you quickly create a job search engine. You can even accept online payments from employers to post listings.
For details, see our guide on how to create a job board in WordPress.
12. Make a Coupons Website
A coupons website helps customers find coupons and deals for their favorite products.
It connects businesses to the customers and provides them tools to locate deals and discounts. It is monetized by affiliate links, partnerships, and display ads.
You can totally automate your website and allow businesses to submit deals directly. This allows you to make money online with user-generated content.
For more details, see our guide on how to create a coupon site in WordPress.
13. Create an Online Marketplace
Many successful marketers use ideas that involve user-generated content to make money. Creating an online marketplace website is one such website idea that you can easily replicate.
A marketplace website is where you provide an eCommerce platform for others to sell their products. You get a cut on each transaction made on your website while the sellers manage the shipping and fulfillment.
For more details, see our article on creating an online marketplace website with detailed instructions.
14. Start a Restaurant Website
Making a restaurant website is an idea specific to people in the restaurant and food industry. Making a restaurant website allows you to accept table reservations and even accept online orders for food delivery.
With WordPress, you can use tools like WPForms to accept bookings and food delivery orders. It also gives you access to many professionally designed restaurant templates that you can customize to your own needs.
Making a restaurant website also helps you easily promote your business, reach new customers, and strengthen your brand image.
15. Build a Reviews Website
Most users look at online reviews before making a buying decision. This makes a reviews website a really lucrative website idea.
A reviews website could rely on both user-generated and original content. You can make money using display ads, affiliate marketing, sponsorships, and more.
We have an article on how to create a niche reviews website with step by step instructions.
16. Make a Photography Website
Another exciting website idea is to launch a photography website. This could be a blog about photography itself, or it could be a place to showcase and sell your own photos.
You can also create a marketplace like Shutterstock where users can sell or buy photographs, illustrations, and other graphic design items.
For more information, take a look at our article on how to make a photography website in WordPress.
17. Launch a Portfolio Website
A great website idea is to make a portfolio website. If you are an artist, photographer, musician, or videographer, then a portfolio website helps you showcase your work and find new opportunities.
However, you don’t need to be an artist to make a portfolio website. The same idea can be used by any kind of professional like writers, web designers, developers, fashion models, and more.
You can use portfolio plugins to showcase your work or choose from these beautiful portfolio themes to get started.
18. Start an Online Food Delivery Website
The online food delivery business is booming and it could be a profitable website idea with a little bit of investment.
You can find local restaurants and create a website that showcases these restaurants and allows customers to order food online. You can then pass the order to the restaurant and they deliver the food.
You can use WPForms to collect food delivery orders. Upon form submission, you can show users a page with estimated delivery time and a phone number to the restaurant.
19. Sell Handicrafts Online
Want to sell your homemade items on the internet? It is really easy to do and could be the beginning of a successful business idea.
You can start an online store using WooCommerce, which is super-easy to set up. Unlike other platforms, WooCommerce doesn’t take a cut out of each transaction you make which is really important for home-based business.
For details, see our guide on how to make an Etsy like store in WordPress.
20. Start a Pets Store / Community
Making an online pets store is another easy to start website idea. It is such a massive industry that you can find many untapped niche ideas catering to specific customers.
You can sell anything on your pet store using WooCommerce. You can also use MemberPress to build a members-only community that generates even more revenue for your business.
21. Start a News Website
If you are into current affairs and politics, then creating a news website could be the money making idea you are looking for.
You can start a news website and monetize it using display ads and by selling membership subscriptions. Many traditional newspapers are already putting their content behind paywalls and monetizing.
You can start small with few articles per week and then build upon that. You can even invite guest authors, start a podcast, and sell merchandise to make a sustainable business.
With local newspapers struggling, there’s a high demand for hyper-local niche news website, and we believe this will be a huge trend going into 2021 and beyond.
We hope this article helped you find the best website idea to launch in the new year. Once you have launched your website, you can see our tips on how to increase your website traffic, and our guide on the best WordPress plugins to grow your online business.
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