Good Business Ideas that Require a Low Investment

Low Cost Business IdeasWhat are some good business ideas with a low investment? Can you really get started in a viable business with a small investment? Most of the Fortune 500 companies today were started on a low investment. In fact, if you start out small, you will be forced to put in the work necessary to build your business, rather than using money to solve your problems. Sometimes, having a lot of startup capital can give you an excuse to spend money on things that will not grow your business. But when you are on a budget, you tend to focus on the tasks that really matter.

I picked out a few good business ideas with a low investment – each is applicable to individuals of all ages, but some will require more specialized skills. The important thing that they have in common, however, is that they require little or no start-up capital.

Vehicle Modifying Shop

Car repair shops are great if you have that skillset, and there are automotive franchises you can get into if you have the money to invest. But if you are on a limited budget, there is money to be made in “pimp my ride” type creative shops that can enhance the appeal of a vehicle. If you like to tinker with cars, this business model could be a good fit. Modifications apply not only to cars, but to smaller vehicles as well, and even non-motorized vehicles such as bikes, rollerblades, skateboards, etc. If you specialize in one of these, you could become the premier modification shop in your community, and this could bring you a lot of revenue to branch out and become bigger.

Internet Retail/E-Commerce

Out of all great business ideas with a low investment, E-commerce is one of the most attractive, because it can be run entirely out of your home office. You will not need much to get started, just enough to set up your online store and run some Facebook promotional campaigns to kick-start your business. You don’t even need to start with paid advertising if you don’t have the capital; there are plenty of ways to promote your E-commerce site for free.

If you have valuables to sell or you have a unique drop-ship method to sell a certain product at a higher markup than the market average, selling your product online can be very lucrative. You could start with a simple eBay or Shopify store and connect it to a payment processor and get paid whenever you make a sale. You can sell items like clothing, pet treats/food, comics, vintage tapes, and sports equipment. There are many “niches” to explore – for instance, rare coins for collectors.

Ice Block Making

Okay, I know what you’re thinking – ice block making? Really? True, this business is seasonal and would definitely work better if you live in a warmer climate such as Florida. That said, this is an interesting small business idea, especially for young adults and teenagers who want to gain business experience with no start-up investment. The only requirement for starting an ice block selling business is to purchase a machine that will make the ice and find a small space to set up shop. Your garage should do just fine, but make sure to check your local laws to ensure you are not in violation of any commercial zoning codes. For the right person in the right climate, this is one of the cheapest and easiest business ideas with a low investment.


Photography is a great low investment business idea for those with a passion for pictures. All you need to get started is some quality camera equipment, which these days, you can probably obtain for around $1000 or so. If you can niche yourself out and provide services that are not generic – such as wedding photography, you’ll be able to charge higher rates because you specialize in weddings exclusively. You’re also not restricted to working within your community because you could sell your work on photography websites such as iStock and Getty Images where people purchase professional images.

There is also the possibility to offer a range of graphic design services for weddings and other events, such as invitation cards, greeting cards, Christmas cards, etc. These usually thrive during Christmas season, Easter and Valentine’s Day but they’re also in-demand for birthdays year-round. If you can offer special bundle packages and better prices than your competitors, this can be a very profitable business model.

There are countless good business ideas that require a low investment and can produce an extra income fairly quickly. With most of these types of businesses, you will need more hustle in the beginning to make up for the small investment. Once you have cash flow, however, you can reinvest some of it and quickly expand your services.

If you have some cash to start with, or you can obtain cash from a family member, friend, or financier, another potential route is to consider a low-cost franchise opportunity. There are several franchises that require less than $50,000, or even less than $25,000 to get started. This allows you to get the benefits of an established franchise brand and proven business model, without the high costs typically associated with industries such as fast food.


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