Business Overview

A virtual assistant (VA) provides remote services to busy professionals who need someone to support their business, cause, or special event. The duties of a VA can include anything from answering emails to performing web development for a new website. VAs usually establish a specialty to help distinguish themselves in a somewhat flooded market.

Who is this business right for?

People who are organized, attentive, and responsible will do well in this position. VAs need to do more than just take directions, they’ll also need to be proactive without stepping on their client’s toes.

What happens during a typical day at a virtual assistant business?

The day for a VA will be highly dependent on their clients and niche. However, a typical day can include any or all of the following:

  • Managing emails
  • Scheduling appointments
  • Researching information
  • Posting/campaigning on social media
  • Writing/editing/transcribing
  • Tracking/shipping packages
  • Coordinating travel plans

What is the target market?

There are plenty of professionals who want an assistant without having to pay a full-time employee (with benefits). The target market for VAs generally includes people in the blogging, real estate, and ecommerce industries. However, special event coordinators, entertainment professionals, or nonprofit leaders may also use a VA on a temporary basis. VAs may also assist general marketers in a variety of businesses with social media needs.

How does a virtual assistant business make money?

VAs may charge clients money for their time. They may do so either per hour or per task, depending on the scope of work.

What is the growth potential for a virtual assistant business?

This is a growing niche as businesses look for ways to cut their staff to just the bare essentials. In fact, some put total industry estimates at close to $8 billion by the early 2020s. However, because the job can be done remotely, clients are often looking for VAs in other countries who may be willing to do the same tasks for mere pennies. For VAs looking to make this their full-time profession, they’ll need to look for every potential opportunity to prove their worth. For a VA to stand out, they need to provide services that can’t easily be found elsewhere.