[This is part of the Side Business Series: From Extra Income to Full-Time Business]

When I picked up my Investor’s Business Daily today, I read the following news: service sector growth slows, job gains weak, layoffs rise, concerns economy is slowing. This is enough to make anyone depressed.

Many people read these bad economic forecasts and abandon their dreams of starting new businesses because they mistakenly believe that their business success is tied to the overall success of the economy. Don’t fall for this wealth crippling excuse.

As I continue through this Side Business Series, I am going to highlight some common excuses that prevent us from starting our own businesses. The first excuse I want to tackle is, “I can’t make money in this bad economy.”

Most side businesses are not dramatically affected by the economy at large. And, to the extent they are, this shouldn’t stop you from starting your own business. Many people make money in a bad economy. This can be you.

Here are some reasons why you should start a business in a bad economy.

7 Reasons Why You Can Make Money in a Bad Economy

  1. Side Business Success is Rarely Tied to the Economy – Except for the 20% of Americans who are out of work right now, the bad economy doesn’t have that huge of an impact on our daily lives. Sure we aren’t seeing the raises we want, but when you step back and look at your life, it’s probably not that much different than it was during the boom times. Please don’t think that I am be callous to those who are suffering terribly. I know there are too many who are suffering. But, if you aren’t one of them, realize that. Be thankful, help your neighbors, and make your dreams happen.
  2. People Are Still Spending Money – While people may be spending less money, they are still spending it. You just need them to spend a little with you.
  3. You Don’t Need Thousands of Customers – Most side businesses are not dependent on attracting thousands and thousands of customers. In fact, many small businesses are profitable with only a handful or two of customers. Again, step back and be realistic about how many customers you need to attract. Then, go out and find them.
  4. You Don’t Need a Lot of Money – Many people are lamenting that banks aren’t lending. But, you don’t need to borrow money to start a side business. Find a low cost business idea. Bootstrap baby!
  5. Take Advantage of Cheap Labor – Wow, that is harsh Fred! No it’s not. Hiring people who need jobs is a good thing. The fact that you can hire them for less money does not diminish the fact that you are giving them more money than they were otherwise earning.
  6. Competition is Less - Since everyone else thinks that you can’t start a business in a bad economy, your competition will be less. Being the contrarian is often the best winning strategy.
  7. Be Ready for the Economic Recovery - If your business is dependent on the economy, then use the bad economy to get it ready for the eventual recovery. You can lay the foundation for your success now.

Business success is often a choice. Choose to ignore the bad economic news around you, and instead start to make money in a bad economy.

[Photo by Kalexanderson]