No money to start your own business? Read this

2. If you have a skill, sell it

Even if you manage to get steep discounts, selling products can require money. You need to get inventory as well as pay for packaging and shipping,

Starting with selling services is a far more cost-effective way to get started—it only requires your time and your skills. It also gives you the opportunity to establish credibility and form relationships with customers before you invest too much.

While websites like Craigslist may be an obvious place to look for work, there are a variety of online platforms where you can find freelance jobs and build up a clientele.

3. Become a Jack of all trades

When your aim is to keep startup costs as low as possible, you’re going to need to do most things yourself—which requires a high degree of resourcefulness.

You won’t be able to avoid tasks and pass them off to someone else. Dig into as many free resources you can find to tackle this uncharted territory.

Whether it’s building your own website or streamlining an accounting system, video tutorials, how-to articles, and in-depth online courses can provide you the knowledge you need to accomplish much on your own.

4. Trade your skills

Know their limits and recognize when something is beyond the scope of what you can master on your own.

If you don’t have the budget to pay for professional photos or draft your promotional copy, trade your skills to get what you need for no or low cost.

For example, a mechanic can exchange free oil changes or tune-ups to that local web developer in exchange for getting their shop’s website established.

Not everybody will be willing to trade work but don’t hesitate to negotiate to trade your skills rather than handing over cash.

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