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Small Business ideas

Requested in Business by IdeaDude (1,350 points)

8 Ideas

+2 votes
Give away a free t-shirt advertising your small business when a customer makes a big purchase. Can display your location and slogan. If you give customers 5% off when they wear it when making a purchase that will encourage them to wear it that much more.
Shared by LWBaum (5,620 points)

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+1 vote
When starting out, do your homework to avoid the unfortunate fate of so many small businesses out there. Many customers prefer to spend their money  at locally-owned establishments, funneling it back into the community. Hair and tanning salons can be profitable ventures as well as bookstores selling used books. A kiosk may be a good opportunity to see if you can make a go out of your business. You can sell anything from purses to hot dogs at a kiosk. There are even outdoor mobile units that sell snow cones, pizza or barbeque. Just make sure you know what restrictions or ordinances are in effect in your town before you jump in feet first.
Shared by a contributor
0 votes
One way some are finding great success is by starting their own business selling their homemade crafts. Bow businesses are particularly in demand as hair bows are fairly expensive yet easily lost and damaged. For a very small investment of just a few hundred dollars, one can acquire the materials needed to get started. Find some models, then post pictures to a social networking web site. Don't forget to advertise, both formally and through word of mouth.
Shared by IdeaDude (1,350 points)
0 votes
Dog Walking Service

If you like going on walks and love dogs you can just combine the two. Great benefit to your health and provides a much-needed service for busy pet owners and some much-needed exercise for their dogs. You actually don’t need much skill or experience to start one. But you do need some equipment like multi-lead dog walking collars and multi-dog leashes but these are a relatively inexpensive startup cost. That type of equipment allows you to walk 3 - 5 dogs at a time without the problem of leads being entangled. This makes dog walking even more convenient and profitable.

You can offer a dog walking service in the morning and/or the evening. You can keep flexible times initially and base it around your personal commitments and other jobs. As your business grows you can change to more fixed time slots. The good thing is you don't have to walk miles and miles (about a mile usually does the trick) but you have to take into account the dog collection and drop off – ideally you would collect the dogs from the owners' houses and drop them off there so it's best to limit your business to your immediate local vicinity. Above all though you must be reliable. You have to be prepared to walk dogs in good weather and bad – snow, ice and storms. This will ensure your charges always get their exercise.

Tips: Give a "gift guide" on dog care tips to each dog owner who hires you. This can be a simple sheet (of colored paper) folded in the middle and printed on both sides with tips. Don't forget to print your contact details and a description of the service on the guide too.

Effective marketing/advertising will be the key to your success. Print attractive flyers/pamphlets on good quality colored paper and stick them on bulletin boards at kennels and veterinary clinics. Distribute your pamphlets at dog shows, pet stores, and other dog care facilities. Tell your friends too. Stock your customers and friends with enough pamphlets so they can hand some over to other dog owners and spread the word. Get on social media and spread the word that there's a new dog walking service in town. Start a website or blog outlining dog care tips and use it to spread the word about your service You can start it as a part-time job initially. But you can take it further later and start a dog daycare facility too (a full-time gig). So you can operate a walking service in the morning and evenings and a dog daycare facility during the day. You can also start employing other dog walkers and then take on more of a coordination role yourself. That'll grow your business while you become less "hands on."
Shared by Andy (300 points)
edited by Andy
0 votes
Wedding Speech Writer

For the bride and groom there's no doubt that the wedding day is (hopefully!) one of the best days of their lives. But for the best man (and often for the father of the bride and the groom himself) it can be a day of huge stress and intricate planning, a day which of course is brought to a head by the wedding speeches. And if you're not used to public speaking the speeches can be a terrifying experience.

Generally it's the male guest speakers of the day that have the most to worry about – the bride’s father, Best Man, and of course don't forget the groom himself, quaking in their shiniest shoes at the prospect of making probably one of the most frightening speeches they will ever have to make. These days it's also much more common for other members of the bridal party – the bride and one of the bridesmaids – to also make some sort of speech. Whoever it is, more often than not speech making will not be something they have done before and they'll have to make it witty and entertaining, striking a balance with just the right degree of sentimentality and pathos. Their time has come to take center stage, dive in, and entertain the wedding party with a bang, or (in the worst-case scenario) belly flop with little more than a pop. After hours of writing and agonizing over what to say, how to deliver their speech, and probably the hardest hurdle of all being confident it is humorous enough.

The truth is, in the majority of cases, guest speakers would gladly pay somebody to lighten this onus, albeit a privileged one, and welcome the prospects of having the speech written for them on one hand, or at the very least partially ghostwritten by somebody who knows how to put a speech like that together. It's definitely an honor to stand up in front of family and guests, and deliver a heartfelt and personal speech in honor of the bride and groom. But it can be an embarrassing situation for the speaker, as well as the guests, if the speech doesn't have the effect or impact intended.

That's where you can step in and offer your services by becoming a wedding speech writer providing a valuable service that's in demand, not to mention saving a few red faces along the way. You can offer your services locally or online by having an outline of the "perfect" wedding speech as a framework and then interspersing the framework with more personal snippets relevant to the happy couple and their families. Your services can be extended to all the speeches during the day so you're providing a complete package. Next time you go to a wedding or hear about one of your friends getting married give this business idea some thought as to whether it's the right type of business for you and whether you could make it work.
Shared by Andy (300 points)
0 votes
Some of my small biz favorites... a business checking resumes for lies and false claims. Or start a cake decorating business or you can be an online freelance writer.
Shared by a contributor
0 votes
Children's Party Planner

If you don't have a great deal of startup money for your business then one option is going to people’s houses to do your work. If you love organizing things, get along well with people (children and adults) and have a talent for entertaining why not start a business as a planner for children's parties?

And there's certainly demand for it.

Many families these days have a number of children and both parents work full-time. This along with the desire of the parents to give their child the best and with the likelihood of a competitive streak to keep up with the Jones’ you can see that there's definitely a need for this service.

For proof you just need to look at TV programs like "My Super Sweet Sixteen." If you can get in on that sort of competitive birthday party circuit then you can really cash in.

On the other side of the fence there's the fact that getting ready for a child's birthday party can be a hectic time and many parents resort to taking the children to a fast food joint for the party instead of having the traditional kids party.

For the same price (maybe even less to be really competitive until you become known) you can offer them a much nicer party with a clown or magician and games in a more traditional style.

You have a couple of options for running your business... Do it all yourself (in which case get ready to don a clown or magicians outfit because you're up on stage) but the better option which is more viable in the long term is to actually do the planning yourself and hire specialists for the entertainment and decorations (and catering if you need it).

You then become a coordinator of specialist party services.

This way you can offer a whole range of parties – from bouncy castles to magicians, "makeover" parties to scavenger hunts.

Make sure you advertise your services locally. Make flyers and advertise in the local paper, local directories offline and online, and make a simple website highlighting your services.
Shared by Andy (300 points)
0 votes
"Nap centers" where parents can leave their kids for a short time for their morning or afternoon nap under the supervison of responsible child minders.
Shared by thinkagain (7,340 points)

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