No Business Is Too Dumb to Become Successful. Here Are 10 Seemingly Dumb Businesses That Made a Fortune.
You don’t need to be the next Elon Musk to make a fortune… all you need are dumb ideas and enough people to buy into the dumb idea and you’re set to make a million dollars from those dumb business ideas as you’ll soon find out.
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The Million Dollar Homepage
One of the most insane million dollar business ideas belonged to Alex Tew, who created this homepage in 2005 to help fund his university education.
The page consisted of a million pixels arranged in a 1000 × 1000-pixel grid. The aim of the site was to sell 1 million pixels at $1 / pixel. Each purchaser would provide tiny images to be displayed in the pixel and a URL, so anyone scrolling the site could hover their cursor over a pixel and it would take you to the requested link.
In the end, Tew made $1,037,100 gross profit off his crazy pixel idea and all it cost him was $50. As he said, “it was the get-rich-quick scheme that actually worked.”
He netted around $700k after taxes. He had highs and lows thereafter, but what made him get back on track was the development of the website, donothingfor2minutes.com, to help mental burnout while online. In 2012, he launched a better meditation App called Calm which won Apple’s 2017 App of the Year with revenue estimated at around $37 million.
Before we had Quora, and about the same time Reddit was created, there was an interesting way of making an anonymous confession, and it had nothing to do with asking for forgiveness.
Frank Warren is the founder of the PostSecret Project, a blog site that has had 820 million views where people could share their secrets and read the secrets of others.
It was 2005 and Warren approached people in various parts of Washington, asking them to write down their deepest, darkest secrets on postcards he handed out. The only thing he requested was that the entry was 100% true.
He received so many postcards in the mail that he decided to create a blog to make it easier for people to access and from there, he has released several books.
New secrets are posted every Sunday, and he makes his money through public speaking and book sales, and what started out as what many might think a completely dumb idea, turned out to be one of the best, not dumb at all, million dollar business ideas.
I Do, Now I Don’t
Aluxers, sh*t happens… and sometimes you get engaged thinking this is my happily ever after, and next minute you’re trying to pawn your engagement ring, or you’re listing your wedding dress on Craigslist with the allure of “only worn once.”
Not one to miss an opportunity, Josh Opperman was left fiance’less after just 3 months of being engaged. All he had left from the relationship was the engagement that cost him $10,000. He took the ring back to the jeweller he bought it from, and they only offered him $3,500.
This inspired him to start, “I do, Now I Don’t.” The website allows people to sell their engagement rings online, and purchasers can get pretty much brand-new rings for much less than they’d pay at the jewellery store new.
The site has been a huge success, and Opperman has been featured on The Today Show, CNN, Fox News and The New York Times.
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If we have got you thinking about engagement rings, don’t forget to check out this article, See How the Engagement Ring has evolved in the Last Century!
Billy-Bob Teeth Inc.
During a time when we spend so much money on dental health, it’s ironic that Jonah White would make a fortune from selling fake, horrible looking hillbilly teeth. This seems like the dumbest idea out of all other dumb million dollar ideas.
We don’t usually kiss and tell, but it was Austin Powers that really put Billy-Bob Teeth on the map.
White got the idea in 1994, when he saw a Southern Illinois University dental student named Rich Bailey sporting a set of fakes he had made up in the lab, that slipped on like a gum guard. The crowds loved it, and next thing you know, the pair are making and selling thousands of crazy looking teeth.
Rich eventually left, to become an actual dentist, but Billy-Bob Teeth continued to thrive and still does. More than 20 million sets of teeth have been sold, netting White roughly $50 million!
Flat D Pads
Aluxers, this is one of those ideas that you wish you had thought of yourself… or perhaps you did, but thought nobody would buy into it, because it does seem a little dumb.
This “dumb” business idea is worth a lot of money. You may not be world’s smelliest farter, or you may be one that relishes in your fragrance, regardless – there is a time and a place to let it go.
So, if you’ve had a hefty lunch of a cauliflower based pizza with artichokes, garlic and cheese… you’ll soon realize the money-making power of fart trapping pads for underwear.
This joint business venture by Brian Conant and Frank Morosky not only provided a solution for flatulence, but also odors from “gastric bypass side effect odors, ostomy smells, irritable bowel syndrome, lactose intolerance, celiac, crohn’s, female vaginal odors, feminine hygiene odor, rectum odor, colon reconstruction issues, chemotherapy and other anal odors,” as described on their website, flat-d.com.
Aluxers, we’re not sure what the rules are regarding pet poop in your area, but in most places it’s required that you pick up after your dog.
However, it seems that is not always the case and it worked to the advantage of Matthew Osborne. He was working cr*ppy jobs and making sh*tty money, when he came upon the idea of picking up poop. As he says on his website, “Pet Butler has been #1 in the “#2” business, providing the best in “pooper scooper service” and sanitation with professional service to 1,000’s of clients across North America.”
His business has been going since 1988 and has expanded in several areas, including pet sitting, dog walking, pet shuttle service, dog potty training and more. You can even open your franchise! It just goes to show, that unlike smart million dollar business ideas, even a sh*t idea can make you money.
In our video, “10 People Who Got Rich from Stupid Products,” we included 10 must-see products that made clever people stupid rich from stupid products, so be sure to check it out.
The trend seems to continue growing, so don’t delay your own stupid idea, Aluxers.
Take for example this one – the Potato Parcel. You can send a personalized potato in the mail and it will cost you $14.99.
Alex Craig, a 24-year-old University of North Texas alum came up with the idea in 2015. Since being featured on Shark Tank, the business has taken off making Craig a very wealthy man.
You can now order a Potato Birthday Bundle, a Potato postcard, Potato Love Bear Bundle and a Potato Pal.
Taters gonna Tate…
I Wear Your Shirt
If you love tees-shirts and you love money, then you’ll love this idea, out of all the dumb million dollar business ideas, that Jason Zook had in 2018 that combined his 2 favourite things.
He went for an entire year wearing a different tee every day, and would of course, let the world wide web know about it. It took him just over 4-years, and he made more than $1 million!
This enterprising guy also sold his last name a few times. In 2012, he auctioned off the rights to his last name and received $45,000 and ended up being called Jason HeadsetDotCom. He did it again in 2013 and became Jason SurfrApp, grossing $50,000 and eventually went to Zook – no money involved – as it was his great, grandfather’s surname.
In our video, 15 Things That Will Become A Luxury, we spoke about air. There we explained the product as “a bottle filled with air, setting you back 80-pounds for a 580ml jar.”
It started with Moses Lam and Troy Paquette filling a Ziploc bag with fresh air and selling it on eBay. A bidding war started with their 2nd bag, and it sold for 99-pounds.
They’re now exporting to China, Vietnam, and India, and were in talks with Vietnam, Korea, Iran, Greece and Mexico.
The guys are earning over $300,000 a year selling their 2 air varieties, Banff and Lake Louise, and say that sales in those particular areas are also great because it makes a welcome change for tourists who would usually buy a key chain or cap.
Flavoured air is in the pipeline, but for now, you can choose from their 2 varieties and purchase a bottle with mask for $32 giving you 160-one second puffs.
Ship Snow, Yo
Shovelling snow is hard work, but it’s all worth it if you can sell the stuff. That’s exactly what Kyle and Jess Waring did.
Ron Mott from NBC Nightly News said, “There’s no business-like Kyle Waring’s snow business,” Brad Tuttle, TIME Magazine said, “Brilliant Guy in Massachusetts is selling snow” and Savannah Guthrie from the Today show called it, “An ingenious idea.”
Their website states they they’ve shipped over 10,000 lbs of Snow to 42 different states!
You can buyt 20+ pounds of snow, a Snowman kit and 50+ pounds Blizzard in a box.
The snow is sent overnight, so regardless of where you are in the US, you’ll have your snow by the next morning and that’s “Snow Joke.” Turning it to be one of the best million dollar business ideas.
Aluxers, have you purchased any of these products or used any of these services? We’ve love to hear about your experience!