The Resource page is a customized list of the tools and websites I highly recommend for creating new business ideas, testing the ideas, and creating strategies to get funded and launch.
I have tested every recommendation on this page, and some of these were made by myself personally, free for you. I recommend these tools, products, and resources to help you with your journey to breakthrough business ideas, as I know they have played a huge part in mine!
Some of the links below are affiliate links, which means that if you choose to make a purchase, I will earn a commission. This commission comes at no additional cost to you. Please do not spend any money on these products unless you feel you need them or that they will help you achieve your goals.
Top Recommended Side Business Resources
The Start-up Idea Matrix
The start-up idea matrix is a wonderful tool developed by Eric Stormberg, an entrepreneur and investor. As we both are huge believers in finding an idea you will want to run with for five to ten years, Eric wanted to bring some visualization to this process. Creating this dynamic and detailed spreadsheet, he did just that. By seeing where the gaps are in each industry can be extremely helpful, which is why it made it here to my resource page. The format can also be applied to single industries.
Lean Business Model Canvas
This is an essential tool for evaluating any business idea that you think of. It can be a great tool to assess if you should keep moving forward with those ideas, or what assumptions you will need to test. This tool will also help you create the desired business model for your idea by adjusting the important parameters of your business.
If you need some business idea inspiration from companies around the world that are raising their first seed rounds or other series rounds, Angel.co is a great website to check out. Sometimes alls you need is to see what is getting funding in the areas you’re interested in for your own gears to get spinning.
Springwise is another great website to find inspirations for business ideas. They discover and release information about new startups around the world. Many of them are discovering and implementing innovative ways to solve problems. A very interesting resource if you need to see what kind of companies people are starting.
Want to learn more about successful and failed startups outside of Business Idea Insight? Check out Failory. They have a great resource where you can read stories from both entrepreneurs that have succeed and failed, learning from both ends of the spectrum. There are some great business ideas discussed too.
Starter Story is similar to Failory, however, they mainly focus on new started and how they got started. It is based on user-submissions, so some of the content is not the highest quality, but you can find some new and unique companies popping-up that many inspire you.
My Favourite Books
One of my favourite books about bringing value into peoples lives, and how the other laws of compensation, influence, authenticity, and receptivity all tie into each other. The authors Bob and John did a great job of combining these five laws into a full circle picture, that other writers do not touch on. This book will help you so much if you are struggling with solving the problem at hand for your business idea.
Strength Finder 2.0
This book is perfect if you are looking to find business ideas from your strengths, or even just discover what your hidden talents are. Tom Rath gives you the tools and pieces of the puzzle to help you find these strengths, so you can put them to use and quit being frustrated with how you are applying your skills now. I still reference this book when I apply my strengths to business ideas.
Born For This
Born For This by Chris Guillebeau is a wonderful book that I think compliments Go-Giver and Strength Finder 2.0 very well. Chris talks about utilizing the joy, money, and flow equation to find the work in your life that tricks you into thinking “how am I actually getting paid for this”. Strongly recommend this book if you find yourself questioning your happiness with work.
The Lean Startup
This book is a must-read for any aspiring entrepreneur! If you are young, you probably don’t have a lot of money to spend on building a startup. This book will teach you innovative techniques that will help you manage your ideas, strategy, and metrics so you know you are headed in the right direction. Finally, an affordable way of operating a business.
The $100 Startup
From the author of the previously mentioned “Born for This”. If you are concerned about the amount of investment you will be making into your business idea, this book is a must read! Chris talks about ways that you can start a business for $100 to $1,000 and reach a level of income of over $60,000 a year. You’ll quickly learn the skills to employ the mindset shift of thinking of low investment business ideas. The foundations that Chris discusses complements the skills we encourage at Business Idea Insight.
Recording your ideas
Having a notebook to record your ideas is essential to thinking of bigger and better ideas. Stepping away from a screen can be the best time for inspiration to strike, and you need a place to record these inspirations!
Shower paper and pen
I don’t know about you, but I get a lot of my business ideas, and other ideas in the shower. Maybe it is having time away from technology that helps. Regardless, I used to always lose track of my ideas and now I don’t with my waterproof pen and paper that fits in my shower!
Dropbox is one of my favourite tools I use to store my notes taken offline from my computer or phone. Having it automatically synced to save makes sure none of my inspirations are lost.
This is a great place to submit business ideas to get feedback for free. Once you submit your idea, other users can upvote or downvote your idea, so you can guage whether others think it is a good idea too. Definitely worth submitting your idea to if you’re curious.
Another great tool for getting feedback on your business ideas is Survey Monkey. You can use this free tool to create surveys and send them to people that may be interested. It’s a great way to get feedback from people within your network.
If you’ve got some money and are looking for a tool to get personalized, this is not a bad route. Personally, I haven’t tried it, but it can work well if you know your demographic and want custom feedback from potential buyers.
Another great way to get insights from real people is through Google Surveys. More cost-effective than Userinput.io, you can ask your target audience questions around the product idea you have, the pricing strategy or business model. Again, this is another paid solution I have not tried, but have heard amazing things.
Idea Check is similar to user input, where you can select the country and demographic of your target audience, submit your idea and get results from a certain number of respondents per price point. However, this service claims they will pur your idea into a questionnaire that is scientifically valid. Again, this is another paid solution I have not tried, but have heard good things.
Podcasts and Shows about Business Ideas
Masters of Scale
The Masters of Scale podcast is a great show by the co-founder of LinkedIn, Reid Hoffman. He interviews other amazing entrepreneurs about aspects around business ideas and how these people become successful. If you need an episode to get started with, I highly recommend the one on killing your business ideas.
How I Built This
Another great podcast to listen to when your in the business idea phases of entrepreneurship is How I Built This by NPR. This is a very professional podcast that has some of the highest caliber entrepreneurs come and discuss how they thought of, developed and launched their big startups. Founders from Airbnb, Uber, and others share their priceless insights.
If you prefer to listen to stories rather than interviews, StartUp does an amazing job at creating podcast series that dive into the workings of many different kinds of startups in the USA.
Shark Tank is a TV show where entrepreneurs get the opportunity to pitch their businesses in front of a panel made up of amazing entrepreneurs like Kevin O’Leary, Mark Cuban, and Lori Greiner. This is a great show to watch if you want some idea inspiration or want to learn how to better pitch your business ideas to potential investors.