How To Turn Your Favourite Hobby Into a Profitable Small Business

There are many ways a business idea can evolve. One of the most common scenarios we see at SBBC is the kind of person who’s looking to turn their hobby into a business.

Oftentimes, people start making things like crafts, jewellery, or cakes to give to friends and family as gifts, never with the intention of selling them. Of course, their friends and family, so thrilled with their gifts, say, “Have you ever thought about selling these? I know so many people who’d buy them.”

While some just brush off the suggestion, others may begin to wonder, “Can I really do this? Will my products actually sell? Where do I even start?” The answer is simple. First, you need to evaluate your business idea.

How to Evaluate Your Business Idea

Evaluating your business idea means determining if there’s a market for your products, how much money you need to start up and run the business, and who your competitors are.

A great tool to use is the Evaluate Your Business Idea checklist. It covers 20 points crucial to understanding your business and industry as a whole. Topics include:

  • Creating a customer profile
  • How your product or service will solve a problem for your customer
  • Defining how and where you’re going to sell to customers in your area
  • Who your competitors are and what price they charge
  • Pricing and costing of your product
  • Identifying industry trends that can help or hamper your business
  • Government laws and licensing that apply to your business
  • Marketing and sales strategies
  • Resources to help your business grow

Getting the Help and Education You Need

After going through the checklist, you’ll be prepared to create your business plan and have a better understanding of what starting a business involves.

Remember, you don’t have to go at it alone. There are many tools and resources available to guide you along the way. SBBC has numerous seminars, toolkits, advisory services, and more, that will help you at every stage of your business journey.

There Are Other Options

Tom Kelley, best-selling author of Creative Confidence, The Art of Innovation as well as a partner at the renowned design and innovation consultancy IDEO, once said, “Fail often so you can succeed sooner.” And it’s true. One of the greatest traits of successful entrepreneurs is their ability to dust themselves off and try again.

If at the end of the process, your business idea does not seem viable, why not consider a different way to monetize your hobby? For example:

  • Teach others how to do what you love by providing education or training in the area.
  • Create an online store selling key accessories for others who share the same hobby.
  • Write about your hobby for magazines or for a blog.
  • Appraise, repair, or fix items that are related to what you love.

A hobby is an important part of a business idea as it gives you a window into what you naturally love and value. This will only make it more likely that you enjoy and succeed in your business and career.

There can be a huge amount of joy in creating income from something you might happily do for free. There are also practical benefits. You’ll likely already have many of the skills, experiences, and personal connections needed for success. Now, you just need the tools and resources to make it profitable – that’s where we can help.

Small Business BC is Here to Help

SBBC is a non-profit resource centre for BC-based small businesses. Whatever your idea of success is, we’re here to provide holistic support and resources at every step of the journey. Check out our range of business webinars, on-demand E-Learning Education, our Talk to an Expert Advisories, or browse our business articles.