43 Most Profitable Service-Based Businesses – 3 Major Challenges That Service Businesses Have

May 6, 2024

most profitable service-based business

The most profitable service-based businesses are: 

  1. Local lead generation
  2. Home cleaning services
  3. Graphic design services
  4. Software development services
  5. Life coaching services
  6. Pet care
  7. Event planning and management 
  8. Accounting and tax services
  9. Delivery services
  10. Monthly subscriptions 

A service-based business is a type of enterprise that offers intangible products to customers instead of physical goods. The focus of such businesses is on delivering expertise, skills, knowledge, or experiences. As JimmySL_ said in a Reddit post, it is about monetizing the skills you already have. He said it’s the easiest way to start a side business. DigitalRevRo added that you need to look for some unmet needs, specialize in that industry, and then build a business around it.

Profitability in service-based businesses hinges on several key factors, such as, delivering high-quality services, effective cost management, strategic pricing, and many more. However, this type of business also has challenges. This includes ensuring consistent service quality, employee recruitment and retention, and incorporating technology without losing personalization.

In this article, we will cover the 43 most profitable service-based businesses today. Also, we’ll look at 3 challenges in dealing with this type of business, factors affecting its profitability, and effective marketing strategies. Lastly, we’ll talk about another profitable business you can start in 2024.

43 Most Profitable Service-Based Businesses

1. Local Lead Generation

Local lead generation is a profitable service-based business with a huge growth potential. It involves offering your expertise in marketing and lead generation to other businesses. It targets local markets through SEO, online presence, and strategic marketing to convert them to sales. This could involve a retainer, pay-per-lead, or performance-based pricing. Local lead generation is a good source of long-term passive income.

This business model offers 85%-90% profit margins. You can start with approximately $500 only for domain, hosting, and SEO tools. Once your site is ranking, it has low overhead and upkeep costs. Local lead generation sites can earn between $500 to $2000+ per month. For example, grandrapidstree.com is a local lead generation website created in 2014 and has been earning $2000/month since. You can repeat ranking and renting a website like this in as many localities as you want. 

Home Service Business

Home business services in the United States alone generated $99.449 billion in revenue by 2022. This is according to iPropertyManagement. IBIS World also said that the US property management sector employed over 877,995 people in 2022. 

2. Home Cleaning Services

Home cleaning services include window cleaning, vacuuming, floor care, and many more. Business Hue mentioned that U.S. cleaning business owners earn between $50,000-$60,000 yearly, with top earners earning up to $110,000. This translates to $26-$32 per hour, working 160 hours weekly.

Thimble also said that residential cleaning costs $36,000 to $100,000 annually. This is from cleaning 25-30 homes monthly and charging between $100-$300 per job. Moreover, the average deep cleaning hourly rate ranges from $50 to $65. This showed that the cleaning business idea will continue to provide a steady income to service providers. For example, Edwin from X(formerly twitter) said that he earns over $6K for 3 months in business with no paid ads.

3. Rental Property Management

Rental property management includes tenant screening, maintenance, rent collection, and more! Fifty-one percent of property owners choose to have property managers. On average, property management companies charge from 8%-12% of the rent. For example, if the rent is $1,000, then one can expect to pay roughly $80-$120 per month to a property manager. Other managers ask for a flat monthly fee and extra fees for other tasks, such as marketing and maintenance.

IBIS World said that the U.S. alone has over 877,995 workers in the property management industry. According to iPropertyManagement , property managers in the U.S. earn $40,000-$80,000 annually. This can go higher, ranging from  $90,317 to $119,679 with high-end properties. Short-term rental platforms like Airbnb have opened new avenues for property managers.

4. Self-St1orage

Self-storage is a growing industry where people rent container units in a warehouse or garage to secure their belongings. There are over 170,000 people employed in the industry, according to the Self Storage Association. According to the S&P Global Market Intelligence, the average occupancy rate for self-storage is 96.5%.

The self-storage industry has an average profit margin of 41%. The industry has reached a national average cost of $110 per month for unit rentals. Other industry drivers include the rise of digital platforms and low maintenance and operating costs.

5. Landscaping Services

Landscaping services include changing and beautifying areas to create aesthetically functional spaces. This includes planting, designing, and installing gardens. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, over 891,620 people worked in the landscaping business.

The average hourly wage is $21.23 and the average annual wage is $44,160. Additionally, there are over 1,281,600 landscaping and groundskeeping jobs in the U.S. alone. Home Advisor reported that most landscaping service companies charge an hourly rate of $50-$100. DynaSpace reported that a net profit margin for landscaping services per job is between 5% to 20%

Tigran Gertz says that he runs a $5M landscaping business in California. A year ago, he landed a $150,000 landscaping job that took 20 days to complete. He said he needs to downsize his crew because of excessive labor costs. Gertz stresses the importance of tracking job expenses to ensure profitability. This includes labor, taxes, and fuel costs.

6. Home Renovation

Home renovation services include home remodeling and home renovating. The National Association of Home Builders said that remodeling companies have an average gross profit margin of 24.9% in 2021. On average, old homeowners spend $18,000 on remodeling, while new homeowners spend over $30,000. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, carpenters earn an average of $23.20/hour and electricians for $28.87/hour.

iPropertyManagement has identified the most popular home improvement projects and products. For example, 71% of renovations use paint while 55% use light fixtures. By specializing in these home improvements, you can achieve great financial benefits. You can capitalize on the significant investments homeowners are making in their properties.

7. Handyperson

A handyperson can handle varied tasks that homeowners may not have the time, tools, or expertise to do themselves. These tasks include:

  • repairs and maintenance
  • plumbing
  • electrical repairs
  • HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning)
  • painting
  • carpentry
  • and many more.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said that a handyperson earns about $29,220 to $68,930 per year, averaging $44,980. They can charge between $50 and $80 per hour. Or, they can also charge a flat fee of between  $150 to $600 per job. Sharpsheets also said that, on average, a handyperson business can generate $540,000 in gross revenue annually. 

The Handyman from YouTube (512K subscribers) posted a day-in-the-life narrative of how he easily earns $1000 in one day. This is from repairing various household items, such as a smoke detector and a garbage disposal. He also does some fence post repair, light fixture installation, and capping off a sprinkler line for an inspection.

8. Construction and House Painting

The construction and house painting industry is a vital component of home and property services. House Grail reported that the average pay for professional painters is $21 per hour. This rate can vary based on experience, the complexity of the project, and geographical location. It can range from $1,000 to $7,500 for interior painting and $2,500 to $8,000 for exterior painting. 

The painting industry projects a 5% growth in employment from 2020 to 2030. This presents opportunities for new entrants into the market. A painting business can earn from 12%-30% profit margin, according to Klappenberger and Son. There's also a rising demand for eco-friendly paint options. Such as the low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) and zero-VOC paints. They are less harmful to the environment. Forbes said that 82% of consumers seek brands that prioritize sustainability.

Tim Oliphant started a painting business that later generated $3,000 per week. He recommends effective marketing strategies and competitive pricing to attract clients. Tim also emphasized the importance of delivering quality workmanship and managing expenses efficiently. 

 9. Home Staging Services

Home staging is making the home appealing to potential buyers, selling the property more swiftly, and for a higher price. Given the competitive nature of the real estate market, home staging remains a profitable and valuable service. Ruby Home said that 48% of realtors stage homes to sell faster. Staging increases the offered values by 1-5%. For example, Lisa Vaisvila helped stage a home that got sold in just 3 days.

The average staging cost is $1,776/month, but for vacant luxury homes, the average is $6,800/month. Home Advisor says that home sellers usually pay between $749-2,820 for staging their homes. Moreover, consultation for staging advice costs $150-$600. 

Design and Creative Services

Design and creative service is a professional service aimed at delivering creative solutions to businesses and individuals. This niche includes: 

  •  graphic design
  •  branding
  • web design
  • interior design
  • multimedia production
  • advertising
  • and many more. 

With the digital era in full swing, these services have become crucial for standing out in a crowded marketplace. 

10. Graphic Design Services

Graphic design services are a dynamic and growing industry. These services can include: 

  • creating a brand’s identity (such as logos and branding materials)

  • designing web pages, user interfaces, and print materials (such as brochures, flyers, and reports)

  • and visual content for digital marketing (such as social media graphics and online ads).

Source: One Hour Professor 

According to Recruiter, the average annual salary for graphic designers is approximately $58,370. This can range from $31,720 to $93,440, depending on experience. ZipRecruiter says that for top graphic designers, the salary can go as high as $157,000. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expected graphic designer's employment to increase by 3% in 2031. Over 23,000 designer jobs are available every year. 

11. Personal Styling and Wardrobe Consulting

Personal styling and wardrobe consulting industry is growing, and it is appropriate for those with fashion skills and creativity. Step By Step Business said that the personal styling business has a potential revenue of $52,000 - $156,000 annually.

It takes 3 months to start a personal styling business. The asking rate for personal styling is between $50-$100 per hour. However, you may also ask for a flat rate per session. By offering personalized services, you can charge premium prices and enhance profitability. 

Lauren Messiah is a personal stylist and co-founder of the Fashion School of Style. Lauren said that there are over 28,000 personal stylists and shoppers in the US, making it a $762 million market. This contributes to the increasing demand for professional styling advice. She also said that styling offers flexible schedules and potential for high income.

12. Photographer and Videographer

The photography and videography business can operate in different niches, such as drone photography and wedding photography. Experienced photographers and videographers may charge for other jobs. Such as workshops, online courses, and personal training sessions.

The growth of social media, content marketing, and e-commerce have amplified the demand of this industry. Offering related services, such as editing, can also provide additional revenue streams. According to Statista, it has a projected market volume of $18.41 billion by 2027. According to ZipRecruiter the average annual pay for these services in the United States is $63,930. Freelance photographers usually earn around $130, 079 annually. 

Technology and Digital Services

Technology and digital services provide specialized digital solutions to specific industries. It aims to offer services that enhance efficiency, productivity, and innovation for its clients. This sector has shown remarkable growth over the years. The global digital transformation market reached a value of $521.5 billion in 2021. Grand View Research predicts that the sector will experience a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 22.1% from 2022 to 2030.

This is driven by technological advancements. Such as software development, artificial intelligence (AI), cloud computing, cybersecurity, and digital marketing. Businesses continue to digitize operations and consumers increasingly engage with digital platforms. 

13. Software Development

Software development is designing, developing, testing, and maintaining software products. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that there will be a 25% growth in demand for software developers from 2022 to 2032. 

The median wage for software developers was $127,260 annually in 2022. There are over 153,000 openings in the U.S. for software developers each year. According to Radix, software development projects typically cost from $3,000 to $150,000. For large-scale and more complex software, the cost can go as high as $1,000,000. In a Reddit post, Randommook gives a breakdown of software developer's salary depending on experience. FAANG stands for giants such as  Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix, and Google.

14. Digital Marketing Agency

A digital marketing agency specializes in marketing products, services, and brands digitally. Services can include search engine optimization (SEO), content and social media marketing, and many more. WebFX said that for average entrepreneurs, digital marketing may cost around $51–$10,000 per month. Demoda mentioned that companies spend around 10%-14% of their budget on marketing.

Digital marketing plays a crucial role in driving the e-commerce sector. On average, small to medium-sized digital agencies in the U.S. can generate revenue ranging from $100,000 to over $1 million annually. Profit margins for digital marketing agencies can range between 10% to 20%, depending on the efficiency of operations and the cost of acquiring clients.

15. Digital Marketing

Digital marketing involves the targeted marketing of products or services using digital technologies. It enhances online presence, engages with their audience, and drives conversions and sales.  

Search Engine Journal said that LinkedIn listed digital marketers among the top 10 in-demand jobs. There are over 860, 000 related job openings annually. ZipRecruiter said that the average annual income for digital marketing is $77,381 a year. Top digital marketing executives and those owning digital marketing agencies can earn more. This often exceeds $100,000 per year. In a Reddit post, user named rankeey says that freelance digital marketers earn from $30-$150 per hour.

16. Online Courses

Online courses deliver structured educational programs via the Internet. Platforms like Coursera, Udemy, and LinkedIn Learning democratized access to education. Now, anyone from anywhere can create an online course and start earning. This industry offers a huge income potential and multiple income streams. 

This can include:

  • course fees

  • subscriptions

  • corporate training contracts

  • affiliate marketing

  • complementary products or services

  • and selling educational products. 

For instance, on platforms like Udemy, top instructors can make over $100,000 annually. While on more niche platforms or through personal branding, earnings can be significantly higher.

Gillian Perkins is a 7-figure online course creator. Her approach emphasizes delivering value, engaging customers, and using strategic sales tactics to create a successful online course that sells. By focusing on results and customer satisfaction, you can build a profitable course business even with a small audience and earn over $100K. 

17. Virtual Assistant Services

Virtual assistant services offer administrative, technical, or creative assistance to businesses or individuals remotely. Virtual assistants (VA) use internet-based communication tools to deliver a wide range of services. This includes email management, scheduling, content creation, and many more. 

As of recent data from ZipRecruiter, the average annual income for VA is $50,749 or higher for those with unique niche skills. VAs can typically charge anywhere from $10 to $50 per hour. VAs require minimal investment to start. Primarily needing a reliable internet connection and a functional workspace, you can work anywhere in the world. Brittany and her husband are about to achieve their dream of moving to Spain by working remotely as virtual assistants.

18. Freelance Social Media Consultant

A freelance social media consultant creates, curates, and manages published content across social media. Their role includes strategizing social media campaigns and engaging with the audience. They also analyze performance metrics and many more. 

According to Glassdoor, social media managers can earn between $53K - $97K per year. Platforms like Facebook and TikTok are increasingly integrating e-commerce features. This opens additional revenue streams for social media managers with the right skills. Wendylovemedia posted in X that the income potential for social media manager has never been greater. 

19. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a strategy where a business rewards affiliates for each visitor or customer brought. While income varies among affiliates, top performers can earn upwards of $150,000 a year. Some affiliates even reach seven-figure incomes.

Affiliates have the flexibility to choose from a wide range of products or services to promote. Moreover, affiliates can start with a low initial investment. You only need a platform (like a blog, social media account, or website) to promote products.

A YouTuber named Buildapreneur said that he started with no knowledge of affiliate marketing. He has surpassed $3,000,000 in commissions from just one product that he has promoted over the years. Content creation and system automation helped him achieve $1,000,000 in commissions in under 2 years. Lastly, he said that affiliate marketing has transformed his  life.

20. Web and Mobile App Development

Web and mobile app development is creating applications that operate over the internet or on mobile devices. The web and mobile app development industry has witnessed exponential growth over the past decade. The increasing penetration of smartphones and internet usage fueled this growth.

Freelance web and mobile app developers can earn anywhere from $50 to $150 per hour. Agencies charge clients based on the project's scope. The prices range from $20,000 for simple apps to over $100,000 for more complex applications. The average salary for web developers and digital interface designers in the U.S. was about $77,200 per year in 2021.

Personal and Professional Development

Personal and professional development business focuses on aiding individuals or groups in enhancing their skills, knowledge, and competencies in both their personal lives and professional careers. The goal is to empower clients to achieve their full potential. It can enhance their performance in the workplace and improve their overall quality of life.

21. Life Coaching Services

Life coaching is an action-oriented service to help individuals achieve their life goals. Coaches work with clients to identify their goals. This includes career advancement, improved personal relationships, better health habits, and many more. Coaches can deliver it through one-on-one sessions, group coaching, workshops, and online programs. This industry has seen remarkable growth over the years. 

Life coaches in North America can expect an average annual income of $62,500, according to the Health Coach Institute. According to Luisa Zhou, the average cost of a coaching session can range from $244 - $1,000. Other drivers of profitability include growing public interest, diverse offerings, adaptability to online platforms, and many more.

22. Personal Chef

A personal chef is someone who prepares meals for clients at home or for special events. These clients often look for customized meals that meet specific dietary needs. Step-by-Step Business said that a personal chef could earn around $62,000 - $250,000 in revenue annually.

There is an increasing demand for customized meals tailored to individual dietary needs. Such as vegan, vegetarian, and meals catering to specific health conditions. The rise in health consciousness and chronic diseases also prompts more individuals to seek personalized meals.

Michael Oh, a private chef from Atlanta, Georgia, faced a layoff from his corporate job during the pandemic. Embracing his passion for cooking, he transitioned to full-time culinary work. Currently, he caters around 4 parties per week, generating up to $14,000 monthly. Despite lacking professional experience in the field, he doubled his income by pursuing what he loves.

23. Academic Tutoring

Academic tutoring is a personalized educational service. It aims to enhance student’s performance in school and other aspects of their life. They often provide assistance with homework and projects and preparation for examinations. 

According to TutorCruncher, a group session can cost between $25 - $125 per hour. One-on-one tutors can charge between $15 to $75. Larger and well-established tutoring centers usually charge between $150-$200 monthly. Tutors specializing in STEM subjects or standardized test preparation can command higher rates. In a Reddit post, BluProfessor owns a tutoring company and charges $75-$200 per hour. 

24. Consulting Business

A consulting business offers expert advice to organizations and individuals in a specific field. This includes management, marketing, finance, IT, or human resources. 

The average income for consultants varies depending on the specialty, experience, and location. For example, a management consultant earns around $87,000 annually, according to the U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Consultants with specialized knowledge or skills in high-demand areas, such as  cybersecurity, can ask for higher fees. 

Sabri Suby is a consultant who grew his digital marketing agency to $10M in 4 years. He says that the nature of the consulting services and the pricing affect  earning. Consultants may charge clients based on an hourly rate, which can range from $20 to $1,500. They can also base their charges on the specific project they work on or charge a retainer fee for recurring consulting services.

25. Language Translation Services

Language translation is a service aimed at facilitating communication across different languages. It enables anyone to communicate with partners, clients, and audiences worldwide. Translation services can include:

  • document translation

  • website localization

  • software localization

  • oral interpretation

  • and many more.

On average, freelance translators can earn between $30,000 and $80,000 annually. Specialized translators or those working in high-demand languages may earn more. Translation agencies can generate revenue up to millions of dollars annually. Other reasons it remained profitable include the rise of digital content and global e-commerce.

26. Customer Support Services

Customer support services refer to the help and advice provided to customers. This can be before, during, and after they buy and use products or services. The role of customer support includes:

  • answering customer inquiries

  • resolving issues

  • providing technical support

  • and many more.

It is a continuously growing industry, according to Statista.Customer support services have expanded beyond traditional call centers. It can include email support, live chat, social media engagement, and self-service knowledge bases. Glassdoor reports that the average salary for a customer service representative in the U.S. is between $30,000 to $50,000 annually.

Health and Wellness

Health and wellness services enhance the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of individuals. This includes:

  • fitness classes

  • yoga

  • meditation

  • nutrition counseling

  • spa treatments

  • mental health services

  • and many more!

The goal is to have a balanced lifestyle, improve health outcomes, and foster a sense of well-being. According to Statista, this industry will reach around $7 trillion by the year 2025. 

27. Pet Care

Pet Care is a service designed to meet the diverse needs of pets. This includes grooming, training, boarding, pet sitting, walking, and health care. Grand View Research reported that this industry was worth $24.92 billion in 2022, and still growing. 

According to Forbes, 66% of U.S. households own a pet, which translates to 86.9 million homes. Dogs and cats top the list of pets, with 65.1 million and 46.5 million households owning them, according to Default. American Pet Product Association, Inc. reported that the annual expenditure on pets in the U.S. has increased over the years. Estimates project that sales in the United States will reach $150.6 billion. Pet owners spend this money on pet food and treats, vet care, supplies, and other services.

28. Beauty Salon

A beauty salon is a service that provides a wide range of hair, skin, and nail care services. Grand View Research reported that the beauty salon industry reached a value of $155.6 billion in 2022. Haircare services, such as haircuts and coloring, are the most in-demand.

Offering a wide range of services attracts a broader client base. From hair care and coloring to advanced beauty procedures and massages. Trafft reported that the average annual wage in the hair salon industry was $38,910. They reported the mean hourly pay for hair salons as $18.71.

29. Personal Training Services

Personal training services help improve the health fitness levels and well-being of an individual. This is through personalized exercise programs and lifestyle coaching. Trainers create tailored workout plans according to fitness level, health, and personal goals. Trainers can deliver these services in various settings. Including gyms, clients' homes, outdoor spaces, or virtually. 

This industry remains a profitable service-based business. It has a growing demand and high earning potential. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected the industry’s growth rate to be 14% from 2022 to 2032. In 2023, over 329,00 personal training jobs are available. The median annual wage for fitness trainers and instructors in 2022 was approximately $45,380.

30. Fitness Coaching

Fitness coaching services are about guiding clients towards being healthy and fit. This can include weight loss, strength training, endurance building, or general wellness. Fitness coaches usually develop customized exercise programs. However, they also provide nutritional advice and offer motivational support. Their goal is to help clients lead healthier lifestyles. 

According to Fortune Business Insights, in North America alone,  this industry shows continued growth. The annual pay for fitness instructors in 2022 is over $45,380. However, income can vary based on location, certifications, and the setting they work. Successful fitness coaches have multiple revenue streams. This includes one-on-one coaching, group classes, online courses, and workshops. Other coaches engage in product sales related to fitness and wellness.

31. Senior Care

Senior care services aim to meet the daily needs of older adults. This includes services such as:

  • assisted living facilities
  • home care services
  • nursing homes
  • adult day care centers
  • and many more. 

Grand View Research predicts that the global elderly care services market will be worth $390.24 billion by 2023.

According to Gitnux, the population of 65 and older in the US will be over 77 million in 2034. This demographic shift underscores the increasing need for senior care services. The cost of senior care varies by the services offered. For example, Senior Living said that the cost of Adult Day Health Care services is around $1,603 monthly. While Independent Living Services range between $1,500 to $4,000 per month.

Event and Leisure Services

Event and leisure services involve meticulous planning, coordination, and execution of events. It can range from small gatherings to large festivals. It can include end-to-end management of events. Including concept development, logistics, venue selection, budgeting, marketing, and on-site coordination.

32. Event Planning and Management

Event planning and management services conceptualize, organize, and execute events. This can include:

  • corporate meetings
  • conferences
  • weddings
  • trade shows
  • social gatherings
  • virtual events
  • concerts
  • and many more. 

The Custom Market Insights reported that the global events industry market size was $1,190.4 billion in 2022. It can reach $1,752.9 billion by 2032, based on estimates. Event planners in the United States can expect an average annual income of $57,905. However, there are some variations based on experience, location, and specialization. Top earners in the field, particularly those who own their event planning businesses, can earn well into six figures.

33. Food Truck

A food truck business offers a unique dining experience to customers by serving a variety of cuisines from a customized vehicle. It is a popular choice for entrepreneurs and chefs who wish to enter the food service industry. This also has lower upfront costs compared to traditional brick-and-mortar restaurants. 

According to IBIS World, the food truck industry will continue to grow over the next five years. They reported that the market value for this industry was around $2.2 billion in 2023. There are over 47,033 food truck businesses in the U.S. alone, with over 54,552 employees. Toast reported that successful food trucks in major cities can generate between $20,000 to $50,000 in sales per month during their active seasons. Profit margins for food trucks typically range from 7% to 8% and reach as high as 15%. 

34. Cycling Businesses

A cycling business can include:

  • bicycle retail and repair shops
  • cycling tour companies
  • bike rental services
  • fitness centers that offer cycling classes
  • and many more.

The profit margins for bicycle retail can vary widely, but successful shops can achieve gross margins of 36% to 42%. For repair services, the margins can be even higher because of lower overhead costs and the specialized skill required. Sharp Sheets reported that the average revenue for a bike shop is $985,000 per year. In addition, the National Bicycle Dealers Association also reported 49.7% and 43% profit margin for bike-related goods. This includes sales of sportswear and clothing.

Business and Financial Services

Business and financial services offer strategic advice on finance, investment, and management. These companies focus on:

  • consulting

  • financial planning

  • asset management

  • market analysis

  • risk assessment

  • and many more.

The primary aim is to help clients maximize their financial performance and strategic positioning in the market.

35. Accounting and Tax Services

Accounting and tax services include managing the financial records, tax obligations, and financial health of businesses and individuals. Firms offering these services typically provide :

  • bookkeeping
  • financial reporting
  • tax preparation and planning
  • audit assistance
  • financial advisory services
  • and many more. 

According to Allied Market Research, the global market for accounting services was over $628.4 billion in 2022. They also expect the industry to reach $1.5 trillion by 2032, with a growth rate of 9.2% from 2023 to 2032. The Business Research Company also said that the tax preparation services segment alone can generate $13.12 billion in 2024. Accountants and auditors in the United States have a median annual wage of approximately $78,000. There are over 1,538,400 jobs available in 2022. 

36. Bookkeeping Services

Bookkeeping services are a systematic recording, organizing, and maintaining of financial transactions for businesses. This includes tracking purchases, sales, receipts, and payments. Bookkeepers also ensure accurate financial record-keeping required by law and necessary for financial analysis and business planning.

According to IBIS World, the market size for the bookkeeping & payroll services industry was $70 billion in 2023, with an increase rate of 3%. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said that the annual median wage for these services was $45, 860 in May 2022. ZipRecruiter also reported that, on average, the hourly rate for bookkeepers ranges from $20- $32.

Logistics and Transportation

Logistics and transportation services include: 

  • warehousing

  • inventory management

  • transportation (via road, rail, air, and sea)

  • freight forwarding,

  • courier services

  • and many more. 

Logistics and transportation services ensure the timely, efficient, and cost-effective delivery of products. Companies offering these services play a vital role in connecting markets. They support businesses to meet consumer demands.

37. Delivery Services

Delivery services can range from traditional mail delivery to more modern approaches. Such as drone deliveries, food delivery, international deliveries, and same-day courier services. With the rise of e-commerce, delivery services have become integral to the global supply chain. This industry has seen exponential growth, fueled by the surge in online shopping. 

According to Statista, the global courier market size was worth around $375.5 billion in 2020. With projections to reach over $400 billion in the next few years to come. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has identified 930,620 employees under the couriers and express delivery services. They have an average annual wage of $54,760. However, small-scale local delivery services might earn differently compared to large logistics companies.

38. Automotive Repair Services

Automotive repair services can range from basic maintenance tasks, such as oil changes and tire rotations, to more complex repairs involving engines, transmissions, and electrical systems. The industry caters to the essential need for vehicle maintenance and repair. It can also include diagnostics and air conditioning repair, bodywork, and paint jobs. 

According to Global Market Insights, this industry was worth $825 billion in 2023. IBIS World reported that the auto mechanics industry generated $81.7 billion in revenue in 2023. For individual mechanics and technicians, the median annual wage was approximately $46,970 in 2022. Financial Holdings said that the average labor cost of repair shops ranges from 36% to 44% of the job price. Climb the Ladder reported that auto repair owners can earn from $45,380 and $113,643 annually.

39. Car Detailing

Car detailing services involve thorough cleaning, restoration, and finishing of a vehicle. Grand View Research Reported that the global market for car detailing services was $37.91 billion in 2022. It has an annual growth rate of 5.5% from 2023 to 2030. This business remains profitable because of the surge in car ownership worldwide. 

The income potential in car detailing varies based on location, services offered, and client base. However, Guide to Detailing said that, on average,  a single person detailing business earns as much as $90,000 per year. Mobile Tech RX reports that the average cost for these services is $160 per job, amounting to $124, 000 a year.

Wayne, a car detailer, emphasizes the importance of providing quality service and networking to attract new clients. Wayne's earnings fluctuate based on the number and type of jobs he completes, but he remains optimistic and focused on growing his business. He mentions earning $875 by the end of the day.

40. Vehicle Maintenance

Vehicle maintenance services focus on the upkeep, repair, and servicing of vehicles. It ensures they operate efficiently and safely. This sector caters to a range of vehicles. Including passenger cars, commercial vehicles, and electric and hybrid vehicles. These advancements create new opportunities for anyone in the vehicle maintenance sector. 

According to Global Market Insights Inc., this industry reached a valuation of $825 billion in 2023. With expectations to grow at a CAGR of over 10.2% from 2024 to 2032. These services have an annual income average of $46,970, or $22.58 per hour. 

Retail and Product-Based Services

Retail and product-based services aim to create a holistic shopping experience. It caters to the customer's needs, preferences, and convenience. It operates at the intersection of traditional retail and customer service. By offering tangible products alongside personalized services to enhance customer satisfaction and loyalty.

41. Monthly Subscriptions

Monthly subscription services provide customers with recurring value and convenience. While companies benefit from steady revenue streams and enhanced customer engagement. Popular examples of these services are giants like Netflix and Amazon Web Services. This industry will continue its rapid growth. Now is the time for entrepreneurs and established companies to include subscription services. 

The global subscription e-commerce market will grow to  $2419.69 billion by 2028, according to Globe Newswire. While, Sell Course Online is more hopeful, stating that it will grow at an 18% rate, reaching $1.5 trillion by 2025. WCNC’s data shows that people spend $62 - $300 on monthly subscriptions. The demand for subscriptions across various categories remains high. This is because 98% of consumers subscribe to at least one streaming service.

42. Amazon Fulfillment

Amazon Fulfillment Services, or Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), stores sellers' products in fulfillment centers. When a customer places an order, Amazon takes care of the packing, shipping, returns, and refunds. This gives sellers access to Amazon’s vast customer base across the globe. Making it possible to expand business internationally with ease.

Income for sellers using FBA varies depending on product type, pricing, competition, and scale. Jungle Scout posted that 13% of Amazon FBA sellers’ earnings range from $1250 to $2500 monthly net profit. While 22% earn $2500 to $6250 monthly. This translates to roughly $3500 average net profit per month. Profit margins for Amazon FBA also vary, with 68% having profit margins higher than 10% and 36% higher than 20%. James Walli recommends exploring Amazon FBA wholesale to earn more. 

43. Coffee Business

The coffee business represents a growing segment of the global beverage industry. This can include coffee shops, cafes, coffee bars, retail coffee shops, drive-thru, coffee carts and trucks, and many more. It has widespread consumer base and diverse market opportunities.

The coffee industry is massive. According to Statista, the coffee market will be $94.7 billion in 2024, with an annual growth rate of 4.37%. Coffee Affections posted that in 2022, Americans spent $270 on coffee annually. Moreover, 62% of Americans drink coffee every day, averaging three cups daily. Toast said that small to medium-sized shops make between $60,000-$160,000 per year. 

A YouTuber called Coffee Business Basics shared that you need to understand financial metrics to succeed.  Rather than solely focusing on cost-cutting measures, successful cafes prioritize increasing sales by consistently delivering quality products and service. He also emphasizes running a profitable cafe requires effort and attention to detail. Lastly, he says that successful cafes earned over 5% net profit.

3 Major Challenges That Service-Based Businesses Have

1. Ensuring Consistent Service Quality

In service-based businesses, ensuring consistent service quality is crucial. This is to keep customers and increase profits. However, this can be a difficult feat to achieve. Unlike physical products, service quality can vary depending on who delivers the service, when, and how. Moreover, customer’s perceptions of quality are highly subjective. Their expectations, experiences, and even their mood can influence it at the time of the service.

To mitigate this challenge, you need to ensure that every employee understands the company's standards. They also need to be equipped to deliver high-quality service consistently. This means that comprehensive and ongoing training is often required.

2. Employee Recruitment and Retention

Service-based industries often have challenging employee recruitment and retention. With the high employee turnover rates, recruitment and training can be costly and disruptive. Moreover, high turnover can lead to inconsistency in service delivery and can affect team morale.

To address these challenges, find employees who have the skills and fit well with the company culture. Keeping employees motivated and engaged is also a challenge compared to product-based businesses. Thus, it is important to create a positive work environment. Provide growth opportunities and reward exceptional service to keep your best employees. 

3. Incorporating Technology Without Losing Personalization

Incorporating technology without losing personalization in service-based business is an enormous problem. Technology streamlines operations, improves efficiency, and enhances the customer experience. However, over-reliance on technology can lead to a loss of personal touch, which is often a key factor in service-based businesses. 

According to The Business Journal, 80% prefer customer service coming from an actual human rather than a system. As a service provider, you need to find the right balance. Use technology to improve service delivery while maintaining a personal connection with customers. Use technology to augment rather than replace personal interactions.

What Factors Make a Service-Based Business Profitable?

  • Low overhead costs: Service businesses often require less capital investment compared to businesses that produce physical goods. They may not need large manufacturing plants or warehouses, leading to lower overhead costs.
  • Scalability: Many service businesses can scale relatively easily without significant increases in costs. For example, a software consulting firm can take on more clients without needing to significantly expand its physical infrastructure.
  • High margins: Services typically have high-profit margins since they often require expertise. Once the initial investment in skills or infrastructure is made, the cost of delivering the service can be relatively low.
  • Repeat business: Service-based businesses often rely on repeat customers or long-term contracts, providing a steady stream of revenue. Building strong relationships with clients can lead to loyalty and ongoing business.
  • Flexibility: Service businesses can adapt quickly to changes in the market or client demands. They can easily pivot their offerings or adjust their pricing strategies to capitalize on new opportunities.
  • Low inventory costs: Unlike businesses that sell physical products, service-based businesses typically don't have to manage inventory. This eliminates the costs associated with purchasing, storing, and managing inventory.
  • Value of expertise: Service businesses often trade on the expertise and knowledge of their employees. Clients are willing to pay a premium for specialized skills or knowledge that can solve their problems or fulfill their needs.
  • Global reach: With advancements in technology, many service businesses can operate globally without the need for physical presence in multiple locations. This expands their potential market and revenue streams.
  • Scalability of labor: Service businesses can easily adjust their labor force to match demand. They can hire additional staff during peak periods and scale back during slower times, minimizing labor costs.
  • Diverse revenue streams: Service businesses can offer a variety of services to diversify their revenue streams. For example, a marketing agency may offer services such as branding, digital marketing, and content creation, allowing them to generate income from multiple sources.

What Are Effective Marketing Strategies for Service-Based Businesses?

  • Strong brand identity development: Your brand's messaging should articulate what you do and for whom you do it. Highlight what makes your service unique or superior to competitors. Use professional visual identity (logo, color scheme, etc.) across all materials and channels. 
  • Content marketing: Share valuable content that addresses the needs of your target audience. Blogs, whitepapers, eBooks, and videos.
  • Opnline presence optimization: This can help increase visibility when potential clients are searching for related services. Targeting local SEO can be effective for businesses serving specific geographic areas. Also, ensure your website is mobile-friendly since the majority use their phones. 
  • Social media marketing: This helps in building a community around your brand.
  • Social proof: Share customer reviews, testimonials, and user-generated content to enhance credibility.
  • Personalization: Send personalized messages, updates, and offers to your clients and prospects.
  • Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System: This helps improve customer service. It keeps track of customer interactions, preferences, and feedback.
  • Partnership: Network and partner with other businesses that offer complementary services. This helps you reach new audiences and add value to your existing clients. Take part in community events, sponsorships, and local organizations. This is to increase your visibility and foster goodwill in your local area.
  • High-quality service: Providing outstanding service is the best marketing strategy. Satisfied clients are more likely to refer others to your business, acting as brand ambassadors.
  • Loyalty programs: Create loyalty programs or incentives for repeat customers and referrals. This is a good way to encourage ongoing engagement and new customer acquisition.
  • Paid advertising: Paid online advertising (such as PPC, and social media ads) can be highly effective if targeted correctly. You may also try influencer marketing to reach customer.

Why Local Lead Gen Biz Is Another Profitable Service-Based Business You Can Start In 2024?

Local lead generation biz is another profitable business you can start in 2024. This is because it presents a unique opportunity for new and seasoned entrepreneurs. Service-based businesses capitalize on the skills of the provider to deliver high-quality service.  Local lead generation capitalizes on the growing demand for high-quality leads. It aims to bring these leads and increase the customer base of certain businesses locally.


Local lead generation uses local SEO and targeted digital marketing strategies to gain leads that convert to sales. Around 46% of all Google searches look for local information (Go Gulf). Over 72% of consumers who did a local search visited a store within five miles (HubSpot Marketing Statistics). This shows that the potential for local lead generation to drive business is immense. Once a lead generation system is in place, you can start earning $500-$2000 monthly, with 85%-90% profit margins. This can come from an optimized website promoting a service-based business in certain areas. 

Service-based businesses need to invest in marketing and sales efforts to attract and keep customers. This can be very costly and time-consuming in the long run. If you want to contribute to the growth of service-based business, try local lead generation. It can provide you with a steady stream of potential customers. This symbiotic relationship can also boost the local economy. In addition, it also establishes lead generation as an indispensable part of the service industry.  

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Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses

Ippei.com is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

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