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As employment opportunities are eroding fast, and wheels of economy are coming down to a deadly crunch, more and more people are joining the jobless brigade. They terribly miss their offices, heaps of papers and colleagues. Without all this, they cannot imagine being gainfully employed. To most, this means the end of the world. A few undaunted and creative ones take this as an unprecedented opportunity to turn a dream into reality and becoming self employed. Which group do you belong to?

Technology today—the cell phone, internet and cloud computing—has made a home-based business as workable and profitable as any regular business but without most running expenses such as office rent, big utility bills and operating cost. We see the bright side of the picture as the number of start-up firms grows steadily and virtual offices open up everywhere. The business is becoming web-based as Skype lets you talk to your business contacts, and employees as well as customers based anywhere in the world.

Many web design companies based in the western hemisphere depend on less expensive workforce in countries like India and Pakistan. Some of the employees may be going to local offices equipped with all the required hardware and software but many professionals stay at home and never need to come to office. Work has become more flexible and less exerting. The disadvantages may be: the staff working in isolation and connectivity tools may create their own problems; but they can be taken care of without much ado. Any business, from local and foreign trade to consultation and executive offices can work in this manner.

You don’t even have to step out of your home to start your business. Call a vendor on phone and tell them to set up the hardware equipped with the requisite software at your place. If you need more software, you can get even that online.

Your letterhead and other office stationery you can design yourself if you can, or get them designed online. Take your time browsing for any stuff for which you can find a ready market and be the bridge between the buyer and seller, making money in the process. The start may be slow but the business will grow just like any other business, maybe even faster as the response time at both supply end and demand end is short. Try using sources like eBay, Amazon Auctions and Craigslist.

If you wish to do a service business, you can be a virtual assistant performing word processing or bookkeeping or become an interior designer or gardening consultant. You can be a tutor or trainer after having prepared courseware for yourself and selling it online; you can even re-sell books and courses.

A technically proficient person can provide computer services either hardware or software or both, networking and web designing. Become a subcontractor or consultant for smaller companies. If you have managed a business for several years and lost it for some reason, you can work as an online consultant for someone else who desires to establish their own business. The best home business idea is the one that fits your passions, interests, abilities and needs. Match your resources with the perfect business idea to begin a new business.

It is always a good idea to separate fact from fiction at the start of a home-based company.

Launching a virtual business is simple and easy

It may look too easy to start a virtual business but it is not as easy to become a millionaire overnight as you might think. Remember: building a business from scratch may be a slow and tedious process. You have to learn the ropes through acquiring authentic information and considerable trial and error.

It costs almost nothing to launch a virtual business

It might be true if you are offering a service. But when selling a product, you have to invest in materials and supplies. Even services such as catering require special equipment you have to procure in advance.

You can make money while sleeping

It is not possible until you have established your company’s reputation that sells itself. You get to this point through years of hard work.

In just a few weeks your virtual business can become a success

Like any other business, you need to make the right decisions at the right moment and work hard to succeed. And it may take years. A single mistake might land you in losing everything. Think creative and work hard in the beginning to multiply your chances of success.