Business Ideas: 310 Types of Small Businesses to Start

August 8, 2019 5:25 PM — Posted by anaheimsigns — Posted at Anaheim Signs ,Sign Company ,Sign Design ,Sign Installation ,Sign Manufacture ,Sign Shop

by Janet Attard

Last Updated: Aug 8, 2019
Looking for business ideas for starting your own small business? Here is a list of 329 business startup ideas plus tips on how to choose the best type of business for you, personally, to start. 

Business ideas
Image source: Photospin

Are you looking for small business startup ideas? Do you want to start your own business, but aren’t sure what kind of business to start? Maybe you’re tired of working for a boss who makes every workday stressful. Perhaps you are convinced you can make more on your own than you can working for someone else — or you just want to bring in a little extra money to pay for a few luxuries in life. Perhaps you’ve been laid off and haven’t been able to find a new job. Or it could be that your family really needs two incomes but you don’t want your kids to be latchkey kids.

Whatever your reason for wanting to start your own business, running the show can be personally and financially rewarding–if you come up with the right business idea.

What kind of business idea is the RIGHT idea to start? How do you find real business opportunities and avoid scams? What would be an easy startup business? The answer is as individual as you are. But in general, to be a good fit, and have a chance to be profitable, the business you select should meet these criteria:

  • It is something you know how to do and can do well.
  • It is something you LIKE to do and wouldn’t mind doing day after day.
  • It is something with a broad enough appeal to sell on a steady basis.
  • It can be sold at a price that will cover all of your expenses and overhead plus return a healthy profit.
  • You have or can raise sufficient funds to get the business started and keep it running until it becomes a profitable venture.

RELATED: Where to find a business idea that’s right for you

If you haven’t yet found your entrepreneurial niche, perhaps you’ll spot a business that sounds promising (based on the criteria just mentioned) in the list of business ideas below. Some can be started as home-based business, others really can’t. Some require you to be an expert in a particular task or industry. Others are in fields that can more easily be learned. 

Many can be turned into full-time businesses, but some are ideal primarily for moonlighting or as add-on income streams in an existing business. All are viable ways to make money, if you know the business and become good at marketing.

Free Business Startup Checklist

Starting a business can be overwhelming! Use this free
Business Startup Checklist
to make sure you don’t miss any important steps. This downloadable Word document lists the steps you need to take to get your business up and running, and includes space for you to note your own comments and deadlines. You can get the checklist free when you subscribe to the free Business Know-How Newsletter.


Request your free Business Startup Checklist

The list below is not all-inclusive. There are many, many other ways to start a business. (If you know of anything you think we should add to our list use our site feedback form to let us know.)

To help you find ideas that match your skills and interests, we’ve grouped the business ideas into a number of categories. Under some of the types of businesses (Artist, for instance) we’ve mentioned particular products or services that might be offered either as the main business or as one of the business’ offerings. Once you find a business idea you think you’d like to start, check out our how to start a business guide to find out how to get ready to launch the business.

329 Business Ideas

Here are the main categories. Click on the links to go directly to that section of the list of business startup ideas.

Art
Automotive
Business and Consumer Services
Crafts
Computer & Internet
Consulting Services
Editorial, Graphic Arts, Publishing
Entertainment
Miscellaneous
Planning and Organizing
Retail and Commercial
Sales

Art

Paint and sell original works of art
Sculptor
Draw caricatures
Graphic designer 
Draw original artwork for  presentations
Book illustrator
Paint wall murals
Hand paint designs on furniture, and decorative items
Create animated videos for businesses
Sell hand-painted or handmade holiday ornaments
Art instructor
Art broker

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Automotive

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Business and Consumer Services

Advertising specialty sales
Administrative support services
Appliance repair
Bed and Breakfast Inn
Bicycle repair
Balloon decorating service
Boat excursions and tours
Business plan writer
Cabinet maker
Car Detailing
Carpet and upholstery cleaning
Catering
Chemical testing
Child Care Service
Chimney sweep
Cleaning Service
Clown
Coin dealer
Collectibles dealer
Collections service
Concrete construction and repair
Cook
Cosmetologist
Crafts instructor
Currency auctions
Dance instructor
Daycare for adults
Dental claims processing
Dog walking service
Dog obedience training
Dog / yard cleanup
Drive for ride-hailing service
Elderly companion
Electrician
Employment agency
Environmental cleanup service
Errand service
Executive recruiter
Financial planner
Fishing boat rides
Flea market seller
Food delivery service
Formal wear rental service (male or female)
Food truck
Framing service (picture frames)
Furniture reupholstering
Genealogist
Grant writer
Hair Salon
Handiman service
Home  or office organization services
Home attendant service
Home design service
Home staging service
Home healthcare service
Home inspector
Housekeeper
Outsourced HR services
HVAC installation & service
Inventory control service
Janitorial service
Junk removal services

Landscaping
Laundry service
Lawn cutting
Lawnmower and motor repair
Lead generation service
Limousine service
Loan consultant
Locksmith
Magician
Mailing service
Market research
Marketing agency
Masonry & Paving for homeowners
Medical Claims Billing Service
Medical transcription
Moving company
Music teacher – private lessons
Nail salon
Novelty T-shirt sales
Nutritional supplement sales
Nutritionist
Paddleboard lessons
Painter
Personal fitness trainer
Personal concierge
Personal chef
Pet sitting
Pet walking
Pet grooming
Pet waste cleanup
Pest control service
Plumber
Pool cleaning service
Portrait and wedding photographer
Private investigator
Property Management
Power washing service
Public relations agency
Public speaker
Remodeling service
Reupholster furniture
Seminar producer
Screen printing
Shopping service
Shuttle service
Sightseeing tours
Small business consultant
Swimming pool installation
Swimming pool maintenance
Reseacher
Tailor
Tax preparation
Telemarketing service
Telephone service reseller
Tool rental
Travel agency
Tree trimming and removal
Tutor
TV installation
Veterinarian
Water taxi service
Window cleaning
Yard cleanup

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Computer & Internet

App developer
Affiliate marketer
Blogger
Computer consulting
Computer backup service
Computer repair
Computer programming
Computer training
Data recovery service
Digital Forensics Specialist
Document scanning service
Email/marketing & newsletter services
Game developer
Internet marketing agency
Software developer
IT services provider
Podcaster
Search engine optimization
Search engine marketing
Social media marketing & management
Social Media Influencer
Warehouse automation systems
Web site development
Web site hosting
Website designer
Web database developer
Web content provider
Web content marketing service 

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Consulting Services

Agricultural consultant
Air quality consultant
Business improvement consultant
Coach (personal or business) or mentor
Computer Consultant
Construction management consultant
Diversity consultant
Engineering consultant
Environmental consultant
Expert witness
Failure analysis / evaluation
Fitness consultant
Franchise consultant
Health & wellness consultant
Healthcare consultant
Human resources consultant
Image consultant
International consultant
Internet marketing consultant

Labor relations consultant
Social media consultant
IT consultant
Marketing consultant
Medical office consultant
Product development consultant
Proposal consultant (government contracts)
Proposal consultant (grants)
Retail consultant
Risk management consultant
Safety consultant
Sales consultant
Security consultant
Skincare consultant
Total quality management consultant
Training consultant
Utility auditing consultant
Wedding consultant
Yoga instructor

RELATED: Starting a Consulting Business

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Crafts

Arts and crafts instructor
Calligrapher
Custom designed T-shirts
Custom designed jewelry
Custom-designed dried or silk flower arrangements
Decorative pillows
Design and sell craft patterns 
Design and sell handmade jewelry
Handmade dolls and childrens’ toys
Handmade candles
Handmade pottery
Handmade soaps
Handmade knitted goods
Leather belts
Quilts
Crafts supply sales
Wood crafts

RELATED: How to Get Started Selling on Etsy

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Editorial, Graphic Arts, Publishing

Advertising agency
Advertising copywriter
Audio editing
Audio transcription
Audiobook narrator
Blogger
Book cover designer
Cartoonist
Columnist
Commercial photographer
Computer animation
Editor
Ebook design & production
Ghost writer / ghost blogger
Graphic artist
Book indexer
Internet Publisher
Literary agent
Multimedia presentation creation
Newsletter production for clients
Nonfiction writer
Novelist
Proofreader
Publicist
Subscription newsletter
Translator
Video animator
Video editing
Videographer
Write book jacket blurbs
Write Publicity Releases

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Entertainment

Agent
Ballet studio
Band leader
Comedian
Dance company
Dancer
DJ
Escape Rooms Musician
One-man band
Producer
Singer
Song writer

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Miscellaneous

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Office Services

Business Support Service
Bookkeeping
Commercial art
Legal transcription
Mailing list management
Medical transcription
Resume writing
Translation service
Virtual assistant

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Planning and Organizing

Business plan writing
Business turnarounds
Professional organizer
Event Planning Service
Meeting planning
Party planning
Show promoting

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Retail and Commercial

Antique dealer
Collectibles shop
Bar/Club
Used book store or online seller
Bakery
Bicycle sales
Bicycle repairs
Bodega
Boutique owner
Chemicals
Chinese food take-out service
Clothing Store
Coffee shop owner
College food delivery service
Delicatessen
eBay Business
Fishing supplies
Gift basket Service
Gift shop
Homemade foods
Janitorial supplies
Jewelry store
Pizza parlor
Posters
Restaurant

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Sales

Business broker
Manufacturer’s sales representative
Network marketing business
Real estate sales & rentals
Telemarketing service
Sales coach or trainer
Direct selling
Printer toner recharging
Sales training

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Copyright 2018 Janet Attard. All rights reserved.

About the author:
Janet Attard is the founder of the award-winning  Business Know-How small business web site and information resource. Janet is also the author of The Home Office And Small Business Answer Book and of Business Know-How: An Operational Guide For Home-Based and Micro-Sized Businesses with Limited Budgets.  Follow Janet on Twitter and on LinkedIn

 

 

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