The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau: Book Review & SummaryThe $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau: Book Review & Summary

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau: Book Review & Summary

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Updated: 20/12/2022


Creating a successful business normally requires massive capital and a comprehensive business plan, which allow you to scale up your business and be able to attract a number of investors.

I have read ” The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau”, the author explains some of the interesting facts that anyone can earn extra money by building a profitable business, at a limited cost.

By following up on some of the arguments from the author, it indicates it’s possible that you can build a successful business that enables you to make extra money. Some side hustle ideas in the book do make a 6 and 7 figures income, which means those entrepreneurs have already quit their job and are solely focused on growing the business into the next stage.

In this article, we will take review and summary of ” The $100 Startup”, which is going to break down into four main aspects. Hopefully, you may find it helpful in terms of improving general knowledge and getting more motivated to achieve what you want.


1. The challenge Thought of The $100 Startup: Side hustle ideas 

2. How to make money by giving people what they want?

3. Creating a page business plan to start a business

4. Scale up your business

5. Chris Guillebeau books

Key Points

  • Chris Guillebeau is an entrepreneur, popular author, and traveler, who run multiple businesses and travel around the world to inspire people.
  • The author highlights the importance of a skill set, passion, and a positive mindset in creating a successful business.
  • For micro-business ideas, the author explains you only need a one-page business plan to start a business.


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1. The challenge Thought of The $100 Startup: Side hustle ideas 

Chris Guillebeau is best known as an author, who wrote the New York Times bestseller book: ” The $100 Startup”. Besides this bestselling book, he has also participated in publishing other popular books, which are 100 Side Hustles, and The Money Tree. Those books received a higher ratings from readers from all over the world.

Following his success as an author, Chris Guillebeau is a great entrepreneur, speaker, and blogger, who run multiple entrepreneurship businesses, which are a travel blog and podcast about side hustle ideas.

The author argues in the book, you don’t need to have huge capital to build a start-up business. Instead, he urges us to think of easy ways to create a micro business as a side hustle, which you could consider a home-based business.

With a limited budget, you could make a list of what you can deliver value to customers, which enables you to find a great way how to make your dream come true. In particular, the author highlights the importance of taking action, where you could start any business with a limited budget, and do it on your own at the beginning to save cost.

You can scale up your side hustle once it reaches a certain milestone in terms of increasing revenue, customer, and product lines. Hence, this challenge though is one of the most important aspects of this book.

Related reading: Entrepreneurs: Checklist for Starting A New Business


2. How to make money by giving people what they want?

The first and foremost important aspect of this book is the author explains thoroughly the 6 criteria of building a microbusiness, which normally requires only one person as a founder to build a profitable start-up business.

Indeed, some of the key aspects in the 6 criteria include limited cost, making a certain amount of money in a year, and “following your passion model”. I won’t mention every single one of them here as I let you further dive deeper into the detail of this aspect of the book. Notes, the 6 criteria are created based on the responses of more than 1500 entrepreneurs, who have experience in the business.

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Use this link to purchase the book on Amazon


Chris Guillebeau gives a stunning explanation about the ” follow your passion model“, where you determine your skill and talent based on your passion. Without the need of customers, your passion will become useless because you are not delivering value to them in accordance with their needs and expectations.

For this reason, the author urges us to examine the importance of delivering value to customers by using our skills and talent. In other words, a successful start-up business will need to help others solve their current problems and create value for society.

As per your preference, here is the magic formula in ” The $100 Startup”.

“Passion or skill + usefulness= success” 

Importantly, the writer also mentions the term ” give people fish” as it means you find out what your customer really wants and you need to take time to figure out how to deliver value to them. It’s the only way your business can connect with customers in a sustainable way.

Related reading: Book Review & Summary: Principles of Life and Work by Ray Dalio


3. Creating a one-page business plan to start a business

Instead of writing a comprehensive business plan with multiple pages, the author reasons for a microbusiness, you only need a one-page business plan to meet the need of your customers and adapt to the changing environment.

Any great business plan will become meaningless if there is no further action to start building on your business. The writer strongly emphasizes the need to take any action on whatever business plan you have, it’s because he argues without taking action, a great business plan is just an idea, nothing more than that.

For this reason, the one-page business plan will cover product, customer preferences, price, and payment channel, as well as a marketing strategy, just to name a few, which help you to get an overall on how to deliver value to your customers.

In addition, the one-page business plan also contains a reflection and review of current challenges and obstacles, which allow you to find the best alternative way to overcome those issues.


4. Scale up your business

Last but not least, at this stage, your business has already expanded like a tree growing up to a higher level in terms of revenue, traffic, and size of the business.

For this reason, the author explains in the book that you may find a solid and trusting partner to form a partnership that may help the business to scale up commercially. In this case, you will share the responsibility and accountability with your partner regarding the business matter, which help to reduce your workload and stress level on you.

In particular, the most efficient way of forming a partnership is to go through a joint venture, which allows you both to divide the capital based on the initial agreement. One of the great benefits of reading this book is the author provides a one-page partnership agreement as an example that you may some significant aspects of your business partnership agreement 


5. Chris Guillebeau books

The following is a list of books that talk about side hustle ideas, which allow you to make money online and offline. Other entrepreneurs who make a living based on building passive income ideas, the author mentions in one of those great books.

  • 100 Side Hustles: The author compiled 100 real-life success stories of startup businesses, most of the businesses are still in existence
  • The Money Tree: A Story About Finding the Fortune in Your Own Backyard.
  • Side Hustles: Chris Guillebeau explains step by step on to build a successful start-up business as a side hustle.


By Jiro Nguyen. 

The content is only based on the author’s personal opinion. It is for informational purposes only, and it does not rely on as a comprehensive or a substitute for professional advice.



What best book talks about side hustle ideas?

The $100 Startup by Chris Guillebeau is one of the best books that teaches you how to create a different side hustle ideas. The author highlights the step by step to starting a business with minimal capital and allows you to make money online and offline.

What are main concepts behind The $100 Startup?

The main concept of The $100 Startup are to show you how to set up a business with limited capital. The book also contains some valuable information regarding techniques and methods on how to increase sale revenue and bring more customers to your business.

Is The $100 Startup teaches you on how to make money online?

The book main purpose is to teach you the effective way to set up a business and how to manage its efficiently. Indeed, you will learn methods on how to make money online by reading other successful stories the author interviewed.

By Jiro Nguyen

Jiro Nguyen is a highly driven and skilled business management professional with an MBA in economics and management. He is also the founder of Moreover, he has a passion for writing and over 4 years of copywriting experience.

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