I know a few people who make money online. Not sure what your refering to not being able to make money"online", but there is a lot of different ways to make money online. Ebay, website distribution, surveys (although you don't make a lot of money, and it's not a sufficent amount of income, but you can make some change and get prizes). So I'd have to disagree with you on they being all scams. Regardless of how much you make, if you make even a very small amount, you still made money. But if it's not enough to support your family, then it's not a sufficient amount. It still can't be considered a scam.
Now to answer your question, my opinion for the best business to start up is the most economical way that gives you the same income opportunity as a traditional store front business, but costs less money to start, less overhead, and easier to run. that is a home based business. Their are plenty of different options to go through on home based business. Many different industries to take a look at. I've had my own home based business that well supports our family and is also a major funding source for non-profit organizations. We do online selling as well as direct person to person selling with the worlds largest Telecommunications service provider. We offer services that people use every day and pay for anyway, but at a lower cost now. Services such as local and long distance telephone services for residential and businesses, Internet (dial up and DSL), VOIP, digital, video phones as well as cell phones and plans through all the major wireless providers like Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, Alltel, Nextell, T-mobile etc. A lot of money to be made in this industry. How many people do you know, or do you know of around the world, that uses one or more of these services? You make a percentage off these services every single month they pay their bills simply from helping them one time before, saving them money and making money at the same time. It's a world wide industry and you can pretty much do it anywhere and it's very simple to do. It also makes you feel great when you saved someone 70% on a service that they already have, or were able to offer them a cell phone cheaper then anyone and put them on a plan that makes them happy.
This isn't the only type of home based business either. There are tons of different things that consist of products and services. You just need to find the one that best suites you. If you'd like some more ideas, I've created a blog on home based businesses on my 360 page. Things from the health industry (vitamins, supplements energy drinks etc), candle industry, kitchen, travel, child daycare centers etc etc etc. There are over half a dozen different businesses to look at. You can either start a business on your own (which costs an arm and a leg) or partner up with a corporation that is already well established and make the same amount of income as you would starting your own business and not have the over head costs and headaches to deal with. Your more then welcome to take a look at the blog for a few ideas.
Home based business owner for over six years