4 popular home based business opportunities in Malaysia

7 min read
Elijah Charbonneau

Are you looking to be your own boss and start your own business? Perhaps you are seeking a change of pace or a new source of income. No matter what your reason, now is a great time to start your own home-based business in Malaysia. Doing so will let you ditch the commute and offer far more flexibility than having a job. Starting a home-based or online business can also be a genuinely rewarding process. As you build a small business, you’ll be able to see the results of your efforts pay off.

 If you’re wondering, can you run a business from home in Malaysia? The answer is yes!

Thanks to the internet, it’s easier than ever to start successful home-based or online businesses in Malaysia. Moreover, the increase in demand for online shopping and freelance specialists fuels the rise of home businesses. Which type of venture you start is only limited by your interests and skill set. In this list, we’ll cover four of the most popular types of home-based business ideas you can start. The best part is launching your new venture from the comfort of your home with these potentially profitable small business ideas!

#1 - Consider a home-based freelancing business

Any list of ideas for home-based or online businesses should include freelancing. This is because freelancing can be one of the easiest ways to start earning an income from home. Often all you need is a computer with internet and the ability to perform a needed service. In terms of what kind of freelancing services you can offer, the range of possibilities is vast. Everything from customer support, data entry, graphic design, marketing, or legal work is possible. It just depends on which skills and experience you have.

To get started, begin looking through the most popular freelancing platforms like Upwork to see what’s in demand. You’ll also see what type of work local freelancers are providing and how much they are charging.

Many top Malaysian freelancers on Upwork earn between USD to USD per hour.

Given that there are little to no startup costs or risks to get started, this is a great option for a home-based, online businesses in Malaysia!

home-based freelancing business
Photo by Michael Burrows from Pexels

To be successful as a freelancer, you’ll want to build a professional portfolio website to show potential clients just what you can do. Then work to build your history of positive reviews on the platform. In terms of home-based or online business ideas in Malaysia, freelancing is a great option to consider first.

Related: How do I create a digital portfolio?

#2 - Start a home-based professional services business

Do you have a skill or professional degree and would like to create a more traditional business compared to freelancing? If that is the case, you should consider a professional services home-based business. Examples of this can include your own accounting practice, web design agency, or digital marketing firm. The difference between this and freelancing is that you’ll be forming your own company and potentially use a trade name.

Editor’s note: For instructions on how to register your own home-based business with the Malaysian government, check out this article

There are many reasons to consider professional services home-based business ideas. For instance, you can say goodbye to commutes for good. You’ll also always have the freedom to work on the projects and with clients that you choose. As you grow your operation, you’ll be able to hire an employee or two to assist in your operation. This, without expensive overhead costs associated with a commercial office lease.

As with any venture, you’ll need to market your service online and potentially offline. Therefore, a professional website and social media profiles should be deemed essential. For help with everything from registering your domain to building out your website, we recommend GoDaddy. They even offer marketing tools to help get the word out about your new home-based or online business in Malaysia!

#3 - Start a home-based food business in Malaysia

We all know that Malaysians take pride in the diversity and quality of food here. If you have a great recipe and the required skills,  you should definitely look into setting up a home-based business to sell your food! Whether you’re dishing out tasty nasi lemak or your father’s secret rojak recipe, there will surely be customers nearby to purchase.

home-based food business in Malaysia
Photo by Angela Roma from Pexels

Wondering how to start a home-based food business in Malaysia? It is pretty straightforward to get started, but keep in mind there are some important rules to follow. For starters, head over to the Ministry of Health Malaysia’s Food Safety and Quality Division. There you will learn everything required to properly set up your home-based food business in Malaysia.

Among the requirements will be to register your small business with SSM (The Companies Commission of Malaysia). You’ll also need to register your premises with FoSIM (Food Safety Information System of Malaysia). To obtain approval, your business will need to meet FoSIM's list of requirements. These include having all of your food handlers receive food safety training and a typhoid vaccine. Your premises will also receive an inspection to verify compliance.

Once your home business is approved, you can get to work selling your delicious goods. But don’t forget to get exposure for your new venture. To do that, start telling friends and family, and also spreading the word via social media. Launching a simple but professional website will also let any potential customers know important information about your food operation.

Related: How to start a business in Malaysia

#4 - Launch an online store in Malaysia

It’s no secret that Malaysians love to shop online. And since online shopping is increasing every year, now is a great time to start selling physical products with an online business Malaysia. In terms of a home-based business, selling either physical or digital products are both great options. If your online business sells physical products, you can buy items in bulk then pack and ship them from home. Or, consider dropshipping, which is when a supplier ships the products directly to your customers. This online business option saves you from ever having to stock any inventory yourself. For reference, selling to the public is considered a B2C company, which means business-to-consumer.

Sell physical products in Malaysia on platforms like Shopee. Or, build your own store using WordPress or GoDaddy’s E-Store

Editor’s note: Looking for a fast and powerful online store builder? GoDaddy’s E-Store has everything you need!  

The alternative to selling physical products with your online business in Malaysia is to sell your own digital products. Digital products are anything for sale that can be viewed or downloaded online. For example, you can create an online business to sell ebooks, online courses, stock photography, or WordPress website templates. Either way, a B2C company

Related: Sell PDFs, videos and other digital content on your website

Concluding the best home-based business in Malaysia ideas

As you can see, there are many different ways to start a home-based or online business in Malaysia. To recap our list of small business ideas, we mentioned freelancing, professional services provider, food business, and selling online. To choose a path that’s right for you, look to your experience and where your interests lie. Whatever business ideas you go with, look to GoDaddy as your source for everything from domains, website hosting, and even digital marketing. Here’s to your success with whichever home-based or online business in Malaysia you create!

Editor’s note: Got questions about putting your idea online? Get instant answers on GoDaddy Asia Facebook Messenger now.