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A Wide Variety Of Popular Online Businesses

May 26, 2008
Each year thousands of online businesses are started; some of them are successful while others go belly up. It can be difficult to predict with 100 percent accuracy which ones will succeed and which ones will fail, but there are certain trends that can predict which popular businesses will continue to be successful in the future for the most part.

One of the most popular businesses on the Internet is anything related to online security. Recent headlines relating to identity theft, security breaches at the highest levels of government and hacking problems have heightened consumer awareness of the need for proper security for all online transactions. Today's online businesses spend billions of dollars on companies that specialize in third party security, including encryption services, site surveillance, data backup, secure database storage, secure server transactions and much more. With identity thieves and hackers always improving their techniques, online security will continue to fit an essential need.

Gourmet foods and regional foods are two blossoming favorites that can now be purchased online and shipped to almost anywhere in the world. An increasingly mobile society is turning to the comforts of the foods of home, whether that be Southern, Cajun, French or anything else. Online businesses such as specialty bakeries, chocolate shops and gourmet cheese shops are meeting the need. Also popular are herbal teas, specialty coffees and small wineries and microbreweries.

With more and more professionals working from home, there is an increased need for virtual assistants. These are an interesting combination of personal assistant and executive secretary that can do anything from scheduling appointments to preparing complex documents, all while being in a remote location. In fact, most virtual assistants work for several employers at once. All that is needed is a high-powered organizer program, a good software package, high-speed modem, VoIP, headset and an office space in your home where there are no distractions. Many virtual assistants juggle the workload and schedules of five or more clients flawlessly. Since telecommuting is on the rise, the need will only increase.

Blame it on the many popular home improvement and home decorating television programs that have proliferated across networks, today's consumers are remodeling and redecorating like never before. Home decor is one of the most popular businesses online. Shoppers love the amazing selection of furniture and outdoor accessories that can be found when they shop online. There are many online stores that specialize in items like high-end fixtures or garden fountains, affordable art reproductions or leather furniture. It means that today's home owners can decorate their homes in styles that are uniquely their own without choosing between driving all over the country to shop or limiting themselves to a small, local selection of furnishings.

It's only natural that the increase in popular online businesses would spawn an increase in the need for designers to put together the websites. Shoppers today are savvy; they expect sophisticated websites that have professional content and graphics. Gone are the days of do-it-yourself sites built from kits. To compete in a marketplace that's heavy with competition you have to look reliable, venerable and cutting edge - and web designers can give you that look.

Booking reservations online is one of the greatest innovations in convenience for online customers there is, and the popularity of online travel sites backs this up. In fact, travel sites are growing in popularity at astronomical rates. The most popular by far are those that serve multiple purposes: booking airfare, hotel reservations and a car rental, for instance. Consumers also like to compare airfares between multiple carriers and negotiate for the best rates. The most recent entries into the online travel business are sites that not only allow you to compare the airfare and hotel accommodations, but suggest various package deals for entire vacations, complete with itineraries, suggested activities, etc. These popular online businesses are changing the face of the travel industry for good.

Diets, Exercise and Vitamins are all aspects of the Health and Fitness industry. This is one incredibly popular online business sector that has a dual personality. Many businesses start up fast and furious, quickly making lots of money, but fade fast because problems with unsubstantiated or overstated claims. For those who are selling a proven system or a medically sound formula, a healthy or fitness related product can quickly turn into a successful and profitable web-based business. For those who try to turn too quick a profit by trading on customers' dreams of a miracle cure, the result can be a disaster with a multitude of legal woes.

The most popular business online may not be the one that's the best fit for you. Take into consideration what you're passionate about and what you're knowledgeable about as well as what customers are interested in. After all, the only business success you need to be concerned about is your own.
About the Author
Andy West is a writer for The Buff and Blue and SMO-Auto Pilot .
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