As baby boomers retire and most millennials become college educated, the blue collar industry experiences an increasing shortage of workers. So if you are looking for a good rewarding job, you may want to consider starting a blue collar business.
Though the blue collar industry was often stigmatized, especially in the Pre-Covid era, there are many beneficial careers to pursue in the field. The industry noted a job vacancy increase from 2,626,637 in 2021 to 10,542,820 in 2022.
Wages for blue collar jobs are also booming as a result of shortage of workers and demographic factors. Without a doubt, this might be your best chance to take advantage of this growth.
This article outlines the best blue-collar businesses to start in 2023 and beyond. Whether you’re a skilled tradesperson or just starting, our guide will provide the information you need to become a successful blue-collar entrepreneur.
What is a Blue Collar Business?
A blue-collar business typically refers to a company that provides goods or services that involve manual labor or skilled trade. These businesses may include painting, building construction, landscaping, automotive repairing, plumbing, and similar trades that require physical exertion.
“Blue-collar” comes from the traditional blue work shirts often worn by manual laborers. Blue-collar workers typically have specialized skills and training but may not require a college degree. These businesses may employ a mix of full-time, part-time, and contract workers. And they may be owned by individuals or corporations.
15 Best Blue Collar Businesses to Start In 2023 [And Beyond]
- Parking Lot Cleanup
- Landscaping and Lawn Care
- Gutter Cleaning
- Snow Removal
- Dog Walking
- Window Washing
- Furniture Flipping
- Pet Waste Removal
- Mobile Detailing
- Carpet Cleaning
- Pool Maintenance
- Pest Control
- Moving Service
- RV and Camper Rentals
1. Parking Lot Cleanup
The parking lot cleaning industry is relatively stable and resilient to economic downturns. As long as there are parking lots, there will always be a need for cleaning and maintenance services.
Consequently, you need to learn how to build strong relationships with property owners and managers if you will succeed. I’m sure you don’t want to fail. It’s important that you’re responsive to clients’ needs and provide excellent customer service.
Keep in mind that you’d need some specialized equipment such as pressure washers, blowers, and vacuum trucks.
2. Landscaping and Lawn Care
Landscaping and lawn care services are always in high demand. People would always want to maintain their properties and create attractive outdoor spaces.
The landscape industry was worth $105.1 billion in 2021, according to IBIS World Landscaping Services. And about 40% of Americans that own lawns hire professionals to cater to them. This shows how profitable this venture can be.
Another beautiful thing about this job option is that they have relatively low start-up costs compared to many other businesses.
Equipment such as lawnmowers and leaf blowers are relatively inexpensive and you can purchase used ones, while many other supplies, such as mulch and fertilizer, can be obtained from local suppliers.
You’d normally generate recurring revenue from regular customers who require ongoing maintenance services. And you can also generate additional revenue by offering additional services such as tree trimming, irrigation system installation, and hardscaping.
3. Gutter Cleaning
Every gutter needs to be cleaned regularly to prevent clogs and damage to the home. While this is true, did you know that many homeowners do not have the time, tools, or expertise to do it themselves? Many, on the other hand, do not want to go through the hassle of cleaning it.
Hence, there is a high demand for professional gutter cleaning services. Thankfully, starting a gutter cleaning business requires relatively low start-up costs. The main equipment you need is a ladder, gloves, and a scoop or trowel. As the business grows, you can add other equipment, such as a pressure washer or gutter vacuum.
While cleaning gutters, you can identify other problems with the home’s exterior, such as roof damage or improperly installed gutters. This provides an opportunity to upsell additional services, such as roof repair or gutter replacement.
4. Snow Removal
Snow removal services are in high demand in areas with heavy snowfall. Since it’s a seasonal business, it allows for a predictable revenue stream.
Your success as a snow removal business depends on the amount of snowfall in your area. It’s important to be prepared for sudden weather changes and have a backup plan in case of unexpected fluctuations.
You may require additional employees during peak season. So you must have a plan for hiring, training and managing these seasonal employees. Here’s a list of the best hiring apps for small businesses.
5. Dog Walking
Dog walking is one of the blue-collar business ideas that doesn’t require formal education or extensive training. Hence, it’s accessible to a wide range of individuals who enjoy working with animals and being outdoors.
Pet ownership continues to increase, with many pet owners having busy schedules that make it difficult to provide their pets with the exercise they need. This hurdle creates a demand for dog walking services, making it a profitable business opportunity.
Moreover, the dog walking business has relatively low start-up costs and minimal overhead expenses. You can also scale up easily by adding new clients, expanding service areas, or adding additional services such as pet sitting or dog training.
6. Window Washing
Window washing is always in demand, as commercial and residential buildings require regular cleaning of their windows for aesthetic and functional reasons. Moreover, window washing is a service that requires repeat business, as windows become dirty and require regular cleaning.
However, safety is paramount in the window washing business, as it involves working at heights and handling potentially dangerous equipment. It is essential you have proper safety protocols in place and train your employees, if any, to follow them.
7. Furniture Flipping
Did you know that furniture flipping is another means to earn extra income in 2023? In 2022, Furniture listings increased by over 40 percent on Facebook.
Most people always look for new and unique furniture to add to their homes? This pattern is especially true for vintage and antique furniture with a classic, timeless appeal. In turn, they seek the professional help of furniture flippers.
To be successful in this business, you need to find high-quality furniture that can be restored and resold for a profit. This means you need to have an eye for detail and be able to identify good deals at thrift stores, garage sales, and estate sales.
Also, consider specializing in a particular niche, such as vintage pieces, mid-century modern furniture, or rustic farmhouse-style pieces.
As construction of new buildings increases, the demand for painting services is expected to increase. Additionally, the increasing demand for sustainable practices in startups and the construction industry has created more opportunities for eco-friendly painting services.
You can offer various services beyond interior and exterior painting. Other revenue streams could include wallpaper removal, wood staining, and decorative painting.
Another thing that makes painting a profitable blue collar business is the flexibility to accommodate customer needs. Flexible schedules allow for a better work-life balance and can attract more customers who need painting services outside of regular business hours.
9. Pet Waste Removal
Pet waste removal is a service many pet owners require but often don’t have the time or desire to do it themselves.
This business requires attention to detail, as small amounts of waste left behind can create health hazards for pets and their owners. You must be diligent in your work and ensure that you leave the customer’s property clean and free of pet waste.
10. Mobile Detailing
When people buy vehicles, they are likely to seek out professional detailing services to keep them looking their best. Detailers can offer various services, such as exterior and interior cleaning, waxing, polishing, and more, tailored to the customer’s preferences.
As the name implies, mobile detailing requires a high level of attention to detail to ensure that each vehicle is cleaned thoroughly and looks like new. You must be meticulous in your work and ensure that no spots are missed or overlooked.
You also need to have the right equipment and supplies to deliver high-quality mobile detailing services. These supplies may include cleaning products, towels, pressure washers, buffers, and more.
11. Carpet Cleaning
With more people owning homes and businesses, the demand for carpet cleaning services continues to grow. Moreover, people are so busy with other things that they prefer to outsource cleaning services.
The industry has seen significant technological advancements, such as the use of eco-friendly and biodegradable cleaning solutions and advanced equipment that can clean carpets more efficiently and effectively.
These opportunities make the carpet cleaning business one of the best blue collar business ideas in 2023 and beyond. The carpet cleaning industry is subject to health and safety regulations to protect employees and customers. It’s essential to comply with these regulations to avoid fines and other penalties.
12. Pool Maintenance
Pool maintenance is a low-cost way to earn money. And it is a service customers will be willing to pay for because proper pool maintenance requires specialized knowledge and expertise, so most pool owners wouldn’t be able to do the work themselves even if they wanted to.
While pool maintenance is a year-round service, there is a significant increase in demand during the summer months. You can expect to earn higher revenue during peak season and make up for slower periods in the off-season.
13. Pest Control
The demand for pest control services is consistently high due to the prevalence of pests in both residential and commercial settings. Pests can cause property damage and pose health risks, making pest control a valuable service that customers are willing to pay for.
Pest control businesses are subject to regulations related to the use of pesticides and other chemicals. Compliance with regulations ensures that pest control services are safe and effective, giving customers confidence in the service and allowing businesses to operate legally.
14. Moving Service
Moving is a common and essential task for many individuals and businesses. This blue collar business typically involves packing, loading, transporting, unloading, and unpacking belongings, and storage and cleaning services. To implement this business idea, you must have a solid plan and effective logistics to ensure minimal damage to belongings.
Ensuring the safety and security of customers’ belongings is crucial to building trust and maintaining a good reputation. Quality assurance measures, such as thorough inventory checks and damage prevention protocols, can help ensure that moves are completed with the utmost care and attention to detail.
Generally, careful cost management, effective pricing strategies, and identifying additional revenue streams, such as storage or cleaning services, can help increase revenue and profitability.
15. RV and Camper Rentals
Camping has become a popular pastime for many people, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic. As more people become interested in camping, there is a growing demand for RV and camper rentals.
RV and camper rentals offer flexibility for people who want to explore new destinations without having to purchase and maintain their own RV or camper. It is a cost-effective and convenient option for campers who aren’t ready to commit to a long-term investment.
When not in use, RVs and campers require adequate storage and parking. Rental companies should have a secure storage facility and a plan for managing the logistics of moving vehicles between the storage facility and rental locations.
How to Start a Blue Collar Business in 2023
1. Choose a business idea: Consider your skills, experience, and interests when choosing a business idea. Research potential markets and identify opportunities for growth and profitability.
2. Conduct market research: Conduct market research to identify your target customers, understand their needs, and determine how your business can best serve them. This will help you develop a solid business plan and marketing strategy.
3. Create a business plan: Develop a comprehensive business plan that outlines your business goals, strategies, and financial projections. A well-written business plan can help secure financing and guide your decision-making process.
4. Register your business: Register your business with the appropriate local, state, and federal agencies. This may include obtaining a business license, tax ID number, and any necessary permits.
5. Secure financing: Determine the financing needed to start and operate your business. This may include loans, grants, or personal savings. Consider working with a financial advisor or accountant to help manage your finances.
6. Set up your business operations: Set up your business operations, including securing a location, purchasing equipment and supplies, and hiring staff. Develop standard operating procedures to ensure consistency and efficiency in your business processes.
7. Develop a marketing strategy: Develop a marketing strategy to promote your business and attract clients. Consider using social media, online advertising, and local networking events to connect with potential clients. It’s also important that you share pictures and videos of your services or goods on your marketing platforms to attract more customers.
This is because visuals are more effective in marketing than mere words. Hence, ensure that your videos and pictures look professional. On the bright side, you don’t necessarily have to break the bank to access the highest image and video editing apps. You can create and edit your videos using these free video editing apps on your Chromebook. You can also edit your photos using some free DIY product photography apps.
8. Launch your business: Once you have completed the previous steps, you are ready to launch your business. Monitor your business operations and financial performance regularly, and make adjustments as needed to ensure that you are meeting your business goals and maximizing profitability.
Optimize Your Blue Collar Business With Innovative Tools
Optimizing your blue-collar business with innovative tools can help you streamline your operations, increase efficiency, and improve customer satisfaction. For example, scheduling apps can help you assign jobs to your employees, while customer communication apps can help you stay in touch with your customers and send them updates about their jobs.
Digital invoicing and payment systems like Bill.com can help you streamline your billing process and reduce paperwork. This way, you can get paid faster and improve your cash flow. CRM software can help you manage your customer relationships and improve customer satisfaction.
Finally, inventory management software can help you track your inventory levels, automate reordering, and reduce waste. This tool can help you save time and money and improve your bottom line.
Adopting these innovative software can help you optimize your blue-collar business and stay ahead of the competition. However, you must evaluate each tool and consider how it fits into your business processes and goals.