Removalists, handyman services and builders are among the fastest growing home-based businesses this year, with newly released data showing micro and small businesses in these sectors surging ahead in the third quarter of 2013.
The report was compiled from over 35,000 job requests made through online home-based business marketplace Oneflare.
The fastest growing industry was the building trade, with requests for builders, concreters, plasterers and glaziers, booming by 360%.
Removalist companies took out the top spot for most job requests, with 40% growth since quarter two.
Requests also increased for carpet cleaners (44.9%), plumbers (21.65%), handymen (102.78%) and gardeners (42.51%).
One of the biggest demand drops was for financial services, such as accountants and bookkeepers, which saw a drop of 175% after the end of the financial year rush. Demand also dropped for cleaners by 27.5%, but it’s still the second most sought after industry.
Oneflare co-founder and chief executive Marcus Lim told StartupSmart the major challenge for home-based businesses was following up leads and closing sales.
“The particular challenge for home-based micro businesses is how they actually sell themselves. Many are excellent at what they do, but they may not be the best sales people and that’s where they can fall short,” Lim says.
A start-up themselves, Oneflare sends leads to small businesses, who then bid for the jobs.
Lim says the key to competing in a field of similar businesses with a minimal marketing budget is to focus on building trust.
“Communication is really key. Focus on setting and meeting their expectations, especially around price, when and how the job will get done,” Lim says, adding businesses with a strong online presence stand out.
“Building an online reputation with reviews and testimonials so potential customers can check you out easily is important.”
This article first appeared on StartupSmart.