As we fast-approach a new decade, more and more people are looking for ways to become self-employed and use their spare time to supplement their income in order to provide extra financial security in an uncertain world. Despite the pandemic, that has been unfolding, there are still plenty of established ideas and new trends that are likely to dominate the part-time business landscape in 2023. In this article, we’ll provide a comprehensive overview of some of the most popular – and potentially most lucrative – small part-time businesses you may want to consider launching next year.

Freelance Graphic Design

We start with a classic – freelance graphic design. As our lives become increasingly reliant on the interwebs, so too do our need for beautiful user interface designs and unique logos that facilitate communication with customers. Furthermore, with the rise of printed media such as brochures, flyers and business cards, the demand for graphic designers has never been higher. That’s why freelancers and independent contractors remain in high demand when it comes to graphic design projects.

Essentially, there are two main options when it comes to launching your freelance graphic design business. The first, and most popular, involves building your own online portfolio and web presence and marketing your services. Alternatively, you can sign up for a freelancing network such as Upwork and start taking on projects from clients around the world.

The most important thing to remember when setting up as an independent graphic designer is that quality beats quantity. You should be looking to develop a signature style or niche for yourself in order to stand out from the crowd and attract high-value projects.

Pet Sitting and Walking

If you’re an animal lover and like the thought of getting paid to look after furry friends, then pet sitting and walking may well be the part-time business for you. It’s relatively easy to set up as a pet sitter or walker: all you need is some basic business know-how and an understanding of the ins and outs of the industry. There are a variety of options open to you when it comes to charging for services. For example, you could charge a flat rate for an agreed amount of time (day, week, month), or you could charge per hour, depending on the level of service requested.

Once you have your pricing structure in place, the next step is to market your services. There are several options open to you within this regard, such as setting up a website and/or utilizing a freelancing platform such as Rover or PetSitters. You should also look to connect with local pet businesses and clinics in order to drum up more business.


Teaching is a noble profession and undeniably a great way to share your knowledge and expertise with others. What’s more, it’s also a great way to supplement your income in your spare time. With the rise of online learning and virtual classrooms, there has never been more opportunity available to those looking to become tutors, such as:

  • Teaching in schools and educational institutions
  • Offering private one-on-one tuition sessions
  • Providing revision classes to those preparing for specific exams
  • Tutoring for university and college courses
  • Teaching foreign languages
  • Providing software or digital technology tuition

Again, there are numerous options for marketing and advertising your services, ranging from print and outdoor advertising to using social media and freelancing networks. It’s also a good idea to connect with local schools and universities to inquire about potential teaching positions that may be available.

Event Photography

Event photography is a perennial part-time option, and one which continues to be popular with budding entrepreneurs the world over. Everyone loves experiencing the magic of an event, and what better way to capture that than through photography. Of course, you’ll need to invest in the right equipment before getting started, with even the most basic camera set-ups costing several hundred dollars.

Once you’re equipped with the basic gear, it’s a good idea to take some courses to help better understand topics such as composition, lighting, and post-editing techniques. With the right skill set in place, you’ll be able to start offering your services for functions such as weddings, corporate events, sports matches, and other celebratory and social occasions.

It’s a good idea to build a portfolio of past work and use this to market and advertise your services. You could also look to partner with an event planning business to tie in some regular or frequent work.

Virtual Assistant

The role of the virtual assistant (VA) is one that has been gaining popularity for some time, and shows no sign of stopping anytime soon. A VA can be hired as a part-time, flexible worker, and tasked with managing the day-to-day activities of a business, such as customer inquiries, paperwork, data entry, invoicing, and more.

Essentially, it’s a great way to earn a side income while enjoying the freedom and flexibility associated with working from home and setting your own hours. And if you have prior experience in customer service and admin, you could be up and running in no time.

As with the other businesses mentioned, you’ll need to invest in and familiarize yourself with the right software, such as online invoicing, data management, and project management tools. You should also build up your virtual network of contacts and create a portfolio of your services and past customer reviews in order to attract more clients.


In summary, the global business landscape is changing and becoming increasingly reliant on freelance and part-time business opportunities in order to generate supplementary income. Fortunately, the digital age has provided us with a plethora of options to choose from, whether it’s digital services such as graphic design and virtual assistant work, or more physical roles such as pet sitting and event photography.

Whichever path you decide to follow, the above five small part-time business ideas are likely to be popular choices next year and beyond. Good luck in your chosen venture!

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