What are some creative small business ideas that most people would not think of starting and where you won’t face rigid competition? Better yet, which of those small business ideas can you start with a relatively small investment? We have a few interesting ideas that might get you thinking about something you might want to start up in 2018.
Most of these small business ideas can be implemented in small towns – they’re not just for large metropolitan areas. You can implement variations of these business models in your town and see the results you get. Since they take very little capital to get started, they do not carry the same level of risk as many other types of small businesses.
- Rent A Bicycle Business
The “rent a bicycle” business model is one of the easiest businesses to start because all you need is a small brick and mortar store where you can display the bicycles and service your customers. If your city is in a fairly warm climate and attracts a lot of tourists, this can generate year-round revenue. If the biking infrastructure is well-developed in your city (most cities in the country are putting in more bike lanes and paths), this model could be especially lucrative. It is also a big plus if you live near hiking trails or similar scenic routes that attract a lot of tourists.
If you invest in mountain bikes, you can charge higher rates and bill customers on an hourly basis. Consider setting up a website and marketing to people in your area to raise awareness (unless your location is already heavily trafficked and you don’t need to do marketing). This is one of the most creative small business ideas and relatively low-risk because your investment can be as low as five figures, and you may be able to recover your initial investment within a matter of months. As soon as you are cash-flow positive, you can start thinking about expanding your services to sell bikes for large manufacturers and/or opening more locations across your state.
- Coffee Making Business
Coffee is always in demand, and if you’re passionate about brewing coffee, you can start a coffee shop in your town and even offer delivery services similar to a pizza shop. Coffee is always profitable because it’s the most consumed drink in the country. In addition, major chains like Starbucks and Caribou have conditioned consumers to pay very high prices for a cup of coffee. You could start this type of business just doing delivery out of your home, undersell the big players, and still have very profitable margins. Later, when you have the capital to invest, you can rent a small shop with some tables for people to come in and enjoy their coffee. Once you reach this point, you will be well on your way to building a lucrative business.
- Cookie Selling Business
Similar to coffee, cookies are loved by almost everyone, and this is one of those businesses that can be started by teenagers/young adults or older adults. If you are interested in baking cookies, you can open your own shop or even start selling cookies out of your home. It is not too hard to bake cookies, and if you have a “secret” family recipe that everybody loves, it might turn out more profitable than you imagine. If you have more capital to invest, there are also some cookie franchises you could become affiliated with.
- Gift Hamper Business
If you can create a business that specializes in the sale of hampers, you can benefit from a lot of seasonal market uptick because people exchange these all the time during Christmas/New Years and they purchase a lot for their extended families/business partners/customers, etc. There are many periods throughout the year where people purchase gifts (usually in large quantities), and if you can become the premier service in your area during those periods, you’ll make enough money to support yourself for the rest of the year. This is also one of those creative small business ideas that can be started by young adults – as long as they are creative about their packages and know how to source out individual products.
- Photography Business
If you have exceptional photography skills (or you have a friend or family member who does), you can start a profitable photography business. Some shy away from this business model because everyone has a camera in their pocket these days. That is true, but people still want professional photos for events such as weddings, birthday parties, and school pictures. One of the best aspects of this business is that all you need to get started is a camera, laptop, photo editing software and a website to promote your service. Photography businesses can be started by young adults too, and as you grow your business, you can also affiliate with large camera makers such as Canon and Nikon to sell cameras in your area.
These are just a handful of small business ideas to get your creative juices flowing. There are numerous additional creative business ideas you could come up with to get into the entrepreneurial game. And if you are in the U.S., experts forecast strong economic growth for 2018, so this may be the ideal time to get into business for yourself.
If you want to be in business for yourself and you’re not necessarily the creative type, a franchise business might be more suitable for you. Franchisors cost more to become affiliated with, but they also allow you to represent an established brand name and give you a proven business model. They also provide strong support, because when you become a franchise owner, their reputation depends on your success, so they have a vested interest in helping you succeed.