Most Successful Small Business Ideas

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When starting a small business, the strength of your business idea is as important as how you approach your new life in business. Successful small business ideas are often small in scope, focused on addressing a few needs in the local market while being ready to adapt to new business opportunities. However, no business idea will be as successful as the one that you yourself are personally interested in; enjoying your work will allow you to persevere during tough times.

What Business Do You Want?

You have an enormous amount of freedom when considering what type of small business opportunity you wish to pursue. With low overhead costs, especially those of home-based businesses, a business doesn't need to earn millions just to turn a profit, although it will likely take a few years before it can provide a full-time income by itself. Be honest with yourself about your talents, but if you pick a business idea which you don't enjoy than you'll never be able to devote the extra hours needed to make the business thrive.

Service-based Business

Many successful small business ideas manifest themselves as service-based businesses that offer a service to clients, which they cannot perform on their own, whether it be a lack of time or physical inability. Individuals with personal expertise in some area, such as energy efficiency or interior decor, can make a living as an independent consultant. Cleaning and landscaping services also prove to be successful, especially in affluent areas with an aging population.

Goods and Retail

The production of goods or retail sale of wholesale brand name products can also be a lucrative small business idea. In contrast to service-based businesses, retail can reach customers who are from geographically diverse areas, especially when online sales are involved. The retail sale of products from brand name wholesalers requires a little more paperwork as the business owner will have to set up seller's accounts through individual wholesalers. If you have a craft or hobby making any sort of items, such as boondoggles or pipes, search online to see what sort of market exists for those goods.

Niche Markets

Successful small businesses cater to markets that may be small but are devoted to the goods or services produced by those businesses. Often, small businesses have to focus on a dedicated niche that can often seem unconventional. Business ideas that have been successful run the gamut from the resale of seminar materials, to uploading a client's CD collection onto music players, to the retail sale of butterflies. You may be able to identify further niche possibilities, or future trends, by reading trade journals and business publications within your industry.


Small businesses often go out of business and sometimes even go bankrupt. When this happens, it's a setback, but many business owners have picked themselves up from a shoddy financial standing to later build profitable businesses. Patience and perseverance are two qualities that are crucial when attempting to go into business for yourself. Even if your initial business fails, you may identify a different type of niche market which you could fill.