Are you thinking of starting your own business? But, do you feel totally perplexed and directionless as to where to start from?
Deciding to start your own company seems very daunting if you’ve never done it before. But, if you have a business idea that you are eager to start your new journey with, then you are on the right track of your entrepreneurial journey.
Forbes Advisor India researched more than 150 ideas and selected the 25 most successful small business ideas that can help you find success..
25 Most Successful Small Business Ideas
1. SEO Consultant
SEO consultant offers search engine optimization services. This is one of the most trending businesses which can surely be started on a small-scale basis. In today’s world, there is a rat race amongst all the companies and big personalities, who wish to be visible online more often than others. Here, SEO experts come into the picture who know best how to bring more organic traffic to your website with the most up-to-date tools and strategies.
SEO businesses are generally quite profitable as the search engines are ever-evolving, and thus there is a lot of demand for SEO consultants. So, if you are an SEO expert, you can easily set up your own business, rather than working for a company or agency. All you need is to invest in marketing, education and business organization in order to reap profits from the business.
2. Cryptocurrency Consultant
Cryptocurrency consultant is a professional who advises their clients to make successful and compliant-based cryptocurrency transactions and practices across accounting and tax functions. As a crypto expert, they safeguard their clients from any illegal and unethical crypto practices.
Crypto consulting business is gaining immense demand worldwide as there are only few people who know about this newly emerged market so well and on the demand side, there are huge corporates, HNIs, celebrities who not only want to invest in digital currency and make healthy profits but also wants to create their own blockchains and non-fungible tokens. That’s why there is a huge demand for crypto consultants who are well-equipped with great knowledge of Bitcoin, blockchain, crypto market practices, etc.
To become a self-employed cryptocurrency consultant, one needs to have a background in finance or technology, hands-on experience by working under experts, and good 8-10 years of experience in crypto consulting business along with a cryptocurrency certification.
3. Venture Capitalist (VC)
One can really start very small and build their own venture capital firm. You can start as an angel investor or can also partner with someone starting a venture capital firm. A venture capitalist, who is popularly known as a VC is an investor who helps and advises a new company in the process of expanding or provides the capital needed for a startup venture. Many paths can lead you to become an independent venture capitalist. Either you have a good experience of investment banking or have been a highly- skilled financial advisor or equity research analyst.
As a self-employed venture capitalist, you can either invest a large part of your funds into your new business or can partner with someone holding the same expertise. To start with, the new venture capitalists should stick to investing in companies which operate in familiar industries. Also, make your decisions based on deep-dive research. And gradually if you become successful and build a reputation, which in turn, will lead to lucrative and higher-profile deals.
4. Small Wealth and Asset Management Company
Independent boutique wealth and asset management firms are gaining edge over the large ones because of their flexibility and agility. You can definitely start a smaller firm if you have a great finance background with some strong network. Being a small firm, you can outsource the other administrative tasks such as IT, human resources, legal/compliance, accounting and focus more time on your clients and building relationships.
Wealth and asset management is an investment advisory service which includes other financial services to cater to the needs of high net worth and affluent clients. An independent and self-employed wealth management advisor is a professional who has the financial expertise to handle an affluent client’s wealth holistically, for one set fee.
5. Personal Finance Youtuber
Everyone earns money but only a few know how to manage their own money. If you have an expertise over personal finance which includes, investing, insurance, retirement, then you can surely start your own YouTube channel and make videos geared towards investors or the beginners looking to learn the basics of investing as well as personal finance skills and thus helps in building wealth. You need to follow these steps while launching your own channel, such as:
- Design a tactical YouTube SEO strategy.
- Keep posting updated investment and finance related videos.
- Make a strategy to have more and more subscribers to your channel.
- Link YouTube page to other social media accounts such as Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram.
6. Online Teaching Classes
The online teaching business and EdTech industry is booming especially after the Covid-19 pandemic situation. So, if at all you are planning to kickstart your online teaching academy, do not hesitate. It is definitely the right time to start, as the online learner base is growing exponentially. Here are some tips that will surely help you to launch your own online academy:
- Pick up an interesting course topic such as taxation, accounting, coding, robotics or any based on your knowledge and expertise.
- Create powerful and engaging course content with the help of attractive background and graphics.
- Learn the technicalities of running an educational website.
- Determine the pricing of the particular course.
- Choose the digital payment gateway.
- Plan the schedule much in advance.
- Use promotional and marketing strategies for your online academy.
- Invest in sophisticated and updated technical hardware and software equipment such as webcam, video camera, selfie ring lights, classroom backgrounds, editing software, etc.
7. Preschool and Daycare Owner
With more and more working population, pre-schools and daycare facilities have become a mushrooming business in India. Preschools have a record of minting a high yielded income and thus, it is considered as one of the lucrative businesses to invest in. All you need is a proper and strong business plan and registration and licenses in place.
If you are a woman and want to invest in a pre-school, then you have several banks and institutions which provide loans at discounted rates and with relaxed loan repayment schemes too. Apart from loan requirements, right location and infrastructure also becomes very important to run business for longer duration.
Do not forget to enter into a long-term lease agreement so that the investment in terms of infrastructure and business development does not get mixed up.
8. App Developer
Well! we are all aware that this is indeed a mobile age, where everything happens via smartphone applications. Whether you want to order food, book theater tickets or hotel reservations, purchase groceries, apparels, or name anything which can be available to you via app. Broadly, there are basically two kinds of mobile applications: utility apps and gaming apps.
With this increasing demand, there is a huge scope for app developers also, who hold an expertise in designing, building and managing mobile applications. App development can be a good business idea, as it has robust earning potential, strong career outlook and multiple opportunities to work with cutting-edge technology. One can easily start their own app development business of designing mobile applications by pursuing related certifications and also by diversifying their coding skills.
Crowdfunding has been considered as one of the most viable investment choices for new-age startups, and emerging business ventures. In simple terms, Crowdfunding happens when a ‘crowd’ funds a project or business, rather than just one or two major investors. Crowdfunding can be related to different segments such as donation, equity, real estate or reward-based.
However, in order to run a successful crowdfunding business, one needs to have good sales and marketing skills to capture the large number of investment backers and convince them in a way that they will invest in your project. The main benefit of crowdfunding business is that it has minimum financial risk and it can be started with a really small budget.
10. Digital Marketing Manager
Digital marketing services are in huge demand and it plays an important role in branding and advertising of the company’s image. If you have a knack for SEO, content marketing, blogs advertising, pay-per-click ads, social media management, you can easily start your small-scale business from an office or even from work from home. Many companies prefer to outsource these services rather than to establish an in-house team.
So, if you like to direct and implement the marketing plans meticulously, digital marketing is the right business for you.
11. Cloud Mining
Cloud mining is a remote mining computerized process which validates transactions of coins done on the blockchain. It is initiated by the cryptocurrency mining hosts who participate in the process in order to earn or gain some returns from the mining process. It is perfect as a small business idea, as it is a very accessible, shared power processing system which facilitates miners to mine crypto coins without establishing any costs for the hardware and its maintenance.
The biggest advantage of cloud mining is that it can be installed anywhere across the globe, where the miner can easily access online with a regular internet connection. So, if you are planning to mine cryptocurrency by yourself, all you need to focus on, equipment and electricity costs before investing in the cloud mining process.
Cloud mining revenues are impressive and their rate is progressively increasing. At the same time, there are certain projects which facilitate mining crypto coins with little or no investment at all.
12. Car-detailing Specialist
If you are an auto enthusiast or wish to start your own business in the automobile sector, then car detailing business is just apt for you. Car-detailing is not when your car just goes through a car wash, but it focuses more on the pristine conditions of your car while doing a thorough detail. Detailing just not only keeps your car clean, but it also protects a car’s exterior and interior which further helps in extending the life of a vehicle and also maintains its maximum resale value.
Well, to start a car detailing business in India is still not that easy as this type of service is still new and complicated, however you can follow these below steps to make your business shine:
- Get specific certification of professional car detailing course
- Find an apt location and also check for proper water and electricity connection.
- Invest in required tools and equipment.
- Show your great work on multiple social media platforms.
- Explore the franchise options and look for an established and reputable brand to kickstart your own car-detailing business.
And, always remember that having new customers can cost more than retaining existing customers. Most car detailing sales come from existing customers who keep coming back to you. So, focus on providing good service to the customer.
13. Home Bakery Business
If you love baking delicious cake, cookies and more and you may not have the resources or the time to start your own retail bakery, then home-based bakery business is just apt for you. With a home-based setup you can easily be your own boss, and work from home, rather than renting out an expensive store and hiring a team of employees.
All you need to do is plan an attractive menu, invest in bakery equipment, purchase supplies such as flour, sugar, butter, eggs and promote your venture to the best on the social media platforms. An attractive visual social media platform such as Instagram is a superb place to share images of your beautiful cookies and cakes. The home bakery business can be started with little investment and can be expanded as per the business’s growing needs.
14. Freelance Coder
Coding is not only a rewarding and lucrative career option but also contributes to the growth of organizations, worldwide. A freelance coder is an individual who performs the designing and development requirements of clients on a contractual basis, through their coding skills. A freelance coder is self-employed and thus they have the full independence of selecting the companies, work domain, project type, based on their own preferences. It is to be noted that there are many coding companies mushrooming in India, but to set your business apart, one must have competencies and skills such as the ability to negotiate, solid network, the ability to meet deadlines and offer timely quality services.
If one is planning to start their coding business, then they will require at least two employees who are skilled in administrative as well as coding tasks. Always hire staff who understand the coding business well.
Starting your own podcast can be so much fun, appealing and also lucrative. Depending on your likes, preference and goals, you can start a podcast and earn money. Focus on building the image of your podcast by naming it strongly, design your cover art and also choose striking audio sounds or background music which adds vibe to your podcast and helps you gain more subscribers. Also create a proper website or RSS feed for hosting your podcast online. Pick your format and also the hosting style. The format can be educational, storytelling, and conversational. You can host your own podcast or can have multiple hosts which adds variety. These are the various equipment that one need to start their own podcast:
- Audio mixer
- Microphone stand
- Pop filter
- Digital recorder
- Condenser microphone
- Sound recording and reproduction
16. Toy Library Owner
Toy libraries can be small, casual or even event-specific. Toy library is a fun business which can be easily started from your home or a small rented out space. These libraries can have either open or closed collections. In an open collection, all the toys are displayed and the children feel, touch and then can choose what they want right from the shelf. However, in a closed collection, children or parents can look at images of toys through social media pages or websites and then decide what they would like to borrow.
Apart from space, you will also require a low-tech inventory system to track what is being borrowed and who is borrowing. If your toy library is small and informal, you can easily manage or be able to run it on your own. But if you have a big set-up, it will require more manpower to handle things perfectly.
To be successful in this business, promote your library through various social media platforms, WhatsApp groups and via flyers and posters which can be distributed to nearby localities, pre-schools and daycare facilities.
17. Telehealth and Virtual Medical Services
Just like fintech, there is one more segment which is also rapidly growing is healthtech. Telehealth and virtual medical services which are an integral part of health tech have really picked up especially after Covid-19 pandemic. These services are now just not restricted to video calls or video meetings of physicians and patients but also offering fully remote care services from appointment to prescriptions to medications and also the follow-ups, from one single platform.
Definitely, this can be one of the best and lucrative business opportunities for small-scale entrepreneurs and start-ups. However, whichever telehealth services you wish to launch, be extra careful and cautious with the regulations and compliance. Research more on telemedicine laws and then create a realistic business plan by factoring in all the expenses. Also, while launching a telehealth company, you need someone who can be partnered as a technology solution provider. There is also a huge range of criteria which should be taken into consideration while opting for a telehealth software which provides data security, tech support, and easy documentation.
So, before putting money into a telehealth business, pick-up the right platform, carefully consider the pricing strategy, and build your business model beforehand.
18. Pet Grooming Business
The pet business in India is still at a nascent stage as compared to the west countries, but growing rapidly and only getting bigger and better. If you are fond of pets and have huge attraction towards animals, then you can definitely start a pet grooming business. To start this business, you need to initially invest in rent, related products and equipment, electricity and water, and groomer salaries. The services which can be offered to pet animals like dogs and cats like spa, haircut and other grooming stuff as per their breeds and types.
19. Influencer Marketer
If you have already worked in this stream of influencer marketing and have gathered enough contacts, then you can surely start your own agency on a small-scale basis. Nowadays, influencer marketer solely focuses on marketing with social media stars who have huge followers on different social media accounts. This can be done via specially designed tools and platforms which helps to find social media celebrities and track their collaboration.
Start with fewer clients first and then you can expand your client base over the years. Focus on competitive pricing, unique offerings and work on niche sectors, for which you already have the expertise as your hands-on experience will always win over the theory.
20. Drop Shipping Business
Are you excited to start an online business, but at the same time not sure how to begin with? Then, you can surely think about drop shipping, as you do not have to get into manufacturing or production stuff here. Drop shipping is a kind of online retail business where there is no physical store that stocks the products, therefore you as an online seller (act as a middleman) do not have to stock the product directly or have to store it in warehouses.
Five main steps of drop shipping process:
1. The customer places an order with a drop shipping retailer.
2. The retailer processes the order and passes it to the wholesaler.
3. The wholesaler receives the order from the retailer.
4. The wholesaler ships the order.
5. The customer receives the order.
Drop shipping is a low-risk business model which requires less upfront capital investment and less overhead costs as compared to other online modes in India. It is also regarded as one of the most rewarded business models as you are not liable for the manufacturing or shipping costs of the product and thus one can start making money from every sale they make.
21. 3D Printing Designer
The 3D printing business is apt for those tech enthusiasts who have a vision to design real-life things into 3D versions. You can have more success if you are an engineer and also are proficient at retooling, refining and offering ways to improve upon a design. The 3D printing business can be started for different industries such as eyeglasses, toys, jewelry, home décor, spare parts, smartphone cases and also for forensic evidence.
To start or make your 3D printing business in India more money-spinning, you need to not only understand the requirements of setting up this business, but also the capital-intensive machinery and 3D printer cost along with its rules and regulations.
To boost such industries, the Union Government of India has come up with various schemes where the entrepreneurs or business owners can avail loans with a low rate of interest.
22. Food Truck
Food trucks are one of the most viable options for those aspiring entrepreneurs who have a passion for cooking but have limited resources to have their own restaurant or café. The overhead and maintenance expenses of a food truck is quite low and this business can be started with very less initial investment.
However, permissions and locality rules play a very important role in setting up a food truck in a particular area.
23. Car Share/Pool Services
The car share market has gained immense popularity in recent years especially in metro and tier-1 cities of India. They basically connect riders who are ready to share their car to pool with people who need a drop to a certain location.
There are certainly some big names that dominate this market, but still there is room for more, if one comes up with a good business idea. Apart from choosing a quirky and catchy name, the look and feel of the app should also be very unique and customer-friendly. To start with, select the niche and the most nearby location and provide extra innovative features that incentivize riders. Have the easiest sign-up and registration feature with easy payment options.
To gain rider’s satisfaction, offer round-the-clock phone, email, or chat support to deal with any kind of customer service grievances.
24. Domain Name Specialist
There is always a demand and huge scope for domain name specialists. As for most businesses, one always needs a strong domain name to add some sense of professionalism and expertise to their official website.
You can easily start as a domain name specialist or as a consultant to many firms and companies, if you have a deep understanding of types of domain names and their marketplaces, domain names registration process, costing and SEO to secure site traffic. Thus, you can assist these firms with your expertise and help them to have a unique online address that further helps them to make their brand more visible and thus attract more customers.
25. Fitness Consultant
Personal fitness training business is a low-cost and a highly lucrative business idea if you yourself are a fitness enthusiastic person. Nowadays, a lot many people, irrespective of their age, wish to have a healthy regime under coach service or proper guidance. Whether it is pilates, yoga, hot yoga, zumba, aerobics or personalized nutrition tips, all these services are easily available, if one hires a fitness consultant to themselves.
Do not forget to put an Instagram feed with fitness inspirational quotes, exercise videos, and healthy snack ideas, as beyond personal coaching services, it is also a common way for fitness experts to build their brands in our digital world and earn money.
Tips For Starting A Small-Scale Business
Starting something on your own might be daunting as well as overwhelming . It not only requires hard work, but also the right strategy, proper management tools and guidelines which have to be implemented timely. Although, every business idea requires different approach but, Forbes Advisor India has identified a few basic steps or guidelines that any entrepreneur can follow while starting their own venture:
- Pick up a realistic business idea and always select your niche target market.
- Scrutinize and evaluate the current market situations.
- Develop your business plan.
- Weigh your finances and accordingly raise money, if needed.
- Determine the regulatory and legal business implications.
- Register your business and acquire appropriate licenses beforehand.
- Do not forget to select the appropriate business-based insurance policies
- Hire manpower and build your team, as per your needs.
- Promote and advertise your business.
Business ideas are the key driving force for setting up a firm. It is the main reason behind the successful operations of every enterprise. The idea does not always need to be rare, different or unique, but it must have the potential to capture a huge part of its target market.
So never hesitate to keep throwing your business ideas to your friends, family and relatives, until you recognize your perfect idea which not only fulfills your passion but also makes great financial sense.