Starting your own business is everyone’s dream. However, most budding entrepreneurs see their dreams nipped in the bud due to a paucity of funds for investment or profitable business ideas.
Should you possess some special skills, you can definitely start your own small business with low investment. While some such small business ideas can be operated from your home, you may need to lease small premises in other cases.
Funding small business: Generally, small businesses begin with whatever little capital you may have. Community organizations and cooperative credit societies also offer loans on very soft terms. You may consider procuring a loan to fund your small business idea.
Plan well for success: Remember, failing to plan is planning to fail. Therefore, plan your business well in advance before launch. Study the market for the product or service you plan to offer.
Further, acquaint yourself well with your prospective competitors and their offerings. Talk to people you trust and seek advice if necessary. Additionally, build a database of your prospective customers before launch.
Most Successful Small Business Ideas in India in 2023
Once you have completed the above homework, you are almost set to open your small business with low investment. Here are 50 new & creative small business ideas with low investment that we recommend to start in 2023.
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This is a very hot and new business idea in India. You can start your own e-commerce business without any significant investment and without stocking any product.
The great thing about dropshipping is that you don't need to purchase any product unless you get an order from a customer.
Here are the steps you need to start a dropshipping business:
- Find a supplier like AliExpress, IndiaMart, etc., and tie up with them.
- Create an ecommerce website and list what you want to sell from these suppliers.
- Promote your website through Facebook and other online marketing channels.
- Receive orders.
- Place an order with the supplier and ask them to deliver the product to the customer's address.
- Make profits.
Your profit will be the margin between the supplier and selling prices. You can sell as high as three times the price of the supplier.
You can read this excellent dropshipping guide to understand dropshipping.
3. Digital Marketing
This is a trending business in India right now, and there are unlimited opportunities in digital marketing.
You can start a digital marketing agency. You can do a freelance business; you can launch your own start-up. You can even promote different products through digital marketing and make money.
But, you need to have excellent digital marketing skills before you start any business in digital marketing. You can learn digital marketing online or join a training center.
It isn't easy to find good digital marketing training institutes in India. Most of the people who provide training are not skilled themselves.
Read this article on how to choose a digital marketing course.
I have more than ten years of experience in digital marketing, and I provide free digital marketing training in Hindi on my YouTube channel. I have thousands of positive comments on my channel that prove the quality of this channel.
4. Network Marketing
Network marketing, also known as Multi Level Marketing, is an excellent small business. However, you must tie up with well-reputed brands offering great products.
A search on the Internet will reveal some major brands whose products are always in demand.
Thanks to rising medical inflation, people nowadays look for unconventional health and nutritional products and supplements, as well as skincare and beauty products.
You can grow your network marketing business by promoting its products to your friend's circle. You can also promote it online by creating a website.
5. Babysitting/ Childcare
This is a small business for women that can launch from home or small premises. The investment required for opening a babysitting and childcare service is very minimal.
All you need to invest in a few toys, cribs, and mattresses.
Add a few packets of disposable diapers, antiseptic lotions, and a first aid box as well. Nowadays, babysitting and childcare facilities are in very high demand due to the rise in the number of working couples.
6. Small Online Business Ideas
There are various small business ideas that can be done online from home or the office. You can start many such ideas without investment.
7. Mobile Garage(Small Business for Men)
Everyone has seen cars, scooters, and motorbikes break down in the middle of busy roads. These vehicles' unfortunate owners usually face a dilemma about where to get repairs. For such eventualities, you can offer a mobile garage.
For this business with low investment, you will require a car, a mobile phone, and all the tools required to repair a stalled vehicle. All you need to do is, rush to the place where the vehicle is parked to perform repairs.
8. Aquariums & fish
This is a small business idea you can enter with low investment and also from your home. For this trade, you need to buy a few aquariums of various sizes and different kinds of fish that are popular as pets.
You can also breed fish by keeping special tanks.
Additionally, selling air pumps, fish food, and decorative stuff for aquariums will net you more profits. Aquariums are also popular as gift items. However, you need to be well-versed in handling various species of fish.
9. Nursery & Garden Requirements
Once again, this is a great small business idea with low investment. Due to increased awareness about the environment, many people now maintain small plants and shrubs in their apartments and offices.
You can open this business from your home. Additionally, you can sell packets of fertilizers, seeds, and other garden requirements.
10. Jams, Pickles & Sauces
As people become increasingly conscious about their health, the demand for healthier, non-commercial jams, pickles, sauces, and ketchup is rising.
Moreover, consumers nowadays are wary of consuming foodstuff that contains chemicals of any sort. Given this scenario, you can manufacture jams, pickles, sauces, and ketchup with traditional recipes that are chemical free.
11. Stamps & Coins
Surprisingly, this lucrative business is almost non-existent in India. Stamp and coin collectors look for the latest issues from around the world.
A few simple steps are all you need to enter this low investment, high returns small business.
Register yourself with postal departments of various countries by paying them a small advance for buying the latest stamps. For coins, there are special government-run bureaus abroad.
They will send you the latest stamps and coins which are sold at a good premium to collectors.
12. Pet Care
Understandably, people love their pets. However, they cannot take their pets along while traveling for holiday or business. Hence, people look for services to care for their pets while away.
I have not seen any major startups for pet care. It's something incredible if you can launch a start-up on pet care business. You may consider this a great business if you are well-versed in handling pets. Again, this is a small business that requires low investment.
13. Fragrant Candles(Creative Business Idea)
Let your creativity and sense of fragrances run wild. Making candles is fairly easy. Fragrant oils are readily available. With some training and experience, you can make fragrant candles of all shapes, sizes, and colors.
Nowadays, such candles are becoming increasingly popular for meditation and relaxation purposes.
14. Cakes & Bakes
Armed with a good oven, you can open a low-investment business making cakes, muffins, cookies, and other bakery items
This small business has huge potential since consumers always look for new, better tastes at economical rates. You will, however, require excellent skills in preparing these baked delicacies.
15. Ice Cubes
Understandably, this is a complex business. Especially since ice cubes sold in the market must conform to specifications prescribed by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
However, with proper equipment, clean water, and proper packaging, you can enter this lucrative market of selling ice cubes in bulk to restaurants and bars and retail to consumers.
You will require FSSAI certification for your ice cubes.
16. Travel Services
Offering travel and related services can see you make instant profits. Tie-up with long-distance bus services offers online reservations of rail tickets and reserve hotels at various destinations for clients.
You can also add local sightseeing and other requirements for your customers. You can either collaborate with a major travel agent or enter into deals with service providers and get commissions for every reservation you make.
17. Start an Ethnic Food Store
Should you be well acquainted with the palates of various communities of India, you can open a small ethnic food store with low investment.
All you need to do is procure products with a long shelf life from suppliers in those regions and sell them to your target communities.
18. Medical Sample Collection
This is another rapidly growing, low-investment small business idea in India. It simply means you collect blood, stool, urine, and sputum samples from patients, from their homes.
These samples are for delivery to pathological labs that will test them and issue medical reports.
The reports have to be home delivered to the customer. You will require a vehicle, equipment to store the bio-hazardous material, and skills in extracting blood samples.
You will need agreements with pathological labs before entering into this business.
19. Antique Furniture Restoration
Nobody wants to part with antique furniture. Simply because they have sentimental values attached. Restoring or repairing damaged antique furniture is one business you can look at if you have a sense of aesthetics and the required skills.
You can also hire craftsmen to do the restoration at the premises of your customer. Restoring antique furniture is very intricate, and you will require excellent workers.
20. CCTV & Surveillance
Increasingly, people are becoming security conscious. They want to protect their families and themselves against theft, rape, and other crime.
Consequently, more and more people are installing CCTV and surveillance cameras in their homes and offices. This is a low investment and high returns small business idea.
21. Party Services
People hold parties for various reasons. They are held yearly to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and other special occasions. With this low-investment business, you can offer various services.
These include venue decoration, conducting games, mascot appearance, and buying and packing return gifts, among others.
22. Address Verification Service
Banks, credit card issuers, and mobile phone companies often require physical verification of addresses provided by customers. They do so to prevent fraud and defaults.
This is a low-investment business that is again in demand nowadays. However, you will require a vehicle and might require manpower to visit the customer addresses provided by banks and other service providers.
23. Make Religious Items
India has a massive market for items required by followers of various faiths. These include pictures of deities, incense sticks, cotton wicks for lamps, candles, prayer beads, and other minor paraphernalia.
Making these at home or at a small premise requires low investment. There is no dearth of customers for such stuff.
24. Postal Labeling and Sorting
India Post requires all bulk mail to be labeled with addresses and sorted according to the Postal Index Number (PIN) code. Banks, companies listed on the stock market, and bulk mailers look for small businesses that can provide this service.
Especially since they do not need to employ staff for the purpose. You will require a vehicle and some manpower to enter this low-investment small business.
25. Walking Tours
For those who reside in cities and towns with several tourist attractions, walking tours are a great low-investment business.
Foreigners and domestic visitors want to get a first-hand feel of the city by walking on the streets, mingling with locals, and experiencing the sights and sounds of the place.
You will have to hire buses to take your tourists to a particular area where they will walk and visit attractions.
26. Imported Products
Indians returning home after a foreign tour tends to buy stuff they can sell locally. They do so to defray the costs of their foreign trip.
Products they sell include fragrances, cosmetics, cigarettes, liquor, chocolates, food items, and T-shirts. The craze for foreign goods in India ensures a good market for your wares.
27. Soya Products
Nowadays, an increasing number of people are going vegan. Soya products such as soya milk, tofu (soya curds), soya flour, and soya chunks provide a great alternative to meat.
Manufacturing Soya products is fairly easy, provided you have the required equipment. It is also a low-investment small business. You can get a small loan to start this micro industry.
28. Unique Ice Creams
Some years ago, people would have balked at the idea of ice cream made with tomato or capsicum. However, such unique ice creams are trending nowadays.
Unfortunately, manufacturers of such rare ice creams are few despite the huge market. If you are daring enough, enter this low-investment business of unique ice creams.
29. Used Laptops
Considered a luxury some years ago, laptops are ubiquitous now. Shopping trends indicate people sell their used laptops and buy those with the latest features and higher configurations.
Despite this, there exists a huge market for used laptops. Buying, refurbishing, and selling such used laptops is a low investment, high returns business you can consider.
30. Sign Boards
Generally, there are two types of signboards used by businesses and shops: Painted and Neon. Every small business and commercial establishment requires signboards.
The demand is for creative yet low-cost signboards that aptly advertise the business. Making and supplying signboards of all types, according to the business owner's specifications, is a business in demand throughout the year.
31. Manpower Supply
Every business requires more manpower almost on a daily basis. This is especially true with restaurants where staff attrition rates are relatively high.
Waiters and cooks leave at short notice or merely abandon work. This puts the business owner at great inconvenience.
Occasionally, households also require manpower to clean the home. With some ingenuity and low investment, you can help restaurants overcome their manpower problems and earn a handsome income almost daily.
32. Stationery Supply
Schools, colleges, and other educational institutions and businesses require bulk stationery. These include customized letterheads, business cards, envelopes, invoice books, receipt books, and others.
You can enter into this evergreen business with little investment and some contacts. You will need agreements with printing presses and a few samples to enter this profitable venture.
33. Digitizing Audio and Video
Millions of people across India possess audio and video tapes of their favorite music and movies, recordings of special occasions, and other stuff. However, audio and video cassette players are now rare.
Nowadays, DVDs and digital forms of music storage are popular. If you possess older type record players, audio and video cassette players, you can enter into this business of digitizing old recordings.
You will need to invest in equipment that allows you to copy audio and video in the older formats to the latest ones.
34. Gardening Services
Individuals and housing societies owning gardens generally cannot attend to their favorite and sometimes expensive plants, trees, and lawns.
Therefore, they look for small businesses that can perform the required task.
You will need to invest in some gardening equipment and hire manpower to enter into this small business, which is also round-the-year in demand.
35. Glamour Photography
Undoubtedly, every male and female want to appear glamorous. Glamorous pictures are used for several purposes: To apply for jobs as models, actors, actresses, cabin crew with airlines, or for matrimony.
For those with an eye for photography, taking glamorous pictures is a great business to open with a small investment.
You will have to buy a professional camera and related equipment. Taking pictures can be done at the residence of the customer or at public places. Alternatively, you can hire a studio by the hour if needed.
36. Caregiver Service
Indisposed senior citizens and people in hospitals require caregivers. Especially since their kin is busy at work or unable to attend to their needs. Caregiver services are fast gaining momentum in India.
Understandably, you will require some manpower to provide such a service. Several unemployed women and men are interested in working as caregivers for businesses that offer the service.
37. Computerized Horoscopes
Understandably, this is one of the most common low-investment businesses in India. All it requires is a computer with the required software, a printer, and fancy paper to print the horoscope.
However, in a land of superstitions, computerized horoscopes continue to remain in high demand. The reason is simple: People do not rely on results from only one computer.
They want multiple horoscopes from different sources.
38. Corporate Gifts
India has a rich culture of corporate gifting. It continues around the year. Corporate gifts include pens, wallets, mugs, and a wide range of stuff given to staff and business associates.
Usually, these items are printed with the company’s name and logo. With adequate samples and contacts, you too can open this business with low investment.
You will need a wide range of products and their samples to display to clients.
39. Packing Services
Small and medium businesses generally do not have a separate department for packing their products. They hire individuals- who can often be unreliable.
Or, they outsource the job to small businesses that can pack their stuff with care while adhering to deadlines.
To enter this business, you will require adequate packing material such as cartons, strapping machines and cutters, and manpower.
40. Homemade Chocolates
You can enter into this highly profitable small business with some chocolate-making skills and little investment. Homemade chocolates are sold by almost every major pastry shop and gift store.
They are in high demand since their taste differs from bulk manufactured varieties commonly available in the market.
Several companies order homemade chocolates to send as gifts to their business associates. Such chocolates are in great demand during festive and wedding seasons too.
41. Name Plates
A common system worldwide is to affix one’s nameplate outside a house or apartment door. Moreover, people also install large names outside buildings, villas, and bungalows.
They prefer artistically designed nameplates or simple ones. Making these nameplates is a low investment small business that anyone can easily begin.
The demand for these nameplates is round-the-year, and you can make decent profits from your venture.
42. Wedding Gowns
Earlier, wedding gowns were the mainstay of the Christian community. However, over the years, the concept of wedding gowns has become popular among people of other faiths too.
Bollywood movies have also contributed immensely to popularizing wedding gowns.
For men and women who are adept at fashion designing, making wedding gowns is an excellent, low investment and high returns small business idea.
You can also offer other fashion wear to ensure income around the year.
43. Chips and Wafers
Chips and wafers are consumed almost everywhere: cinema halls, schools, homes, bars, buses, and on trains. The list is endless. Manufacturing chips and wafers with potato, raw banana, jackfruit, tapioca, and other starchy roots is pretty easy.
The equipment required is not expensive. However, you need to ensure a proper supply of raw materials and good packaging. Generally, shops and bars order such chips and wafers in bulk.
44. Idli and Dosa Batter(Best Small Business Idea in India)
The mainstay of south Indian communities, Idli and Dosa, is now popular across India. However, not everyone can prepare the batter required for making these dishes.
It requires a proper blend of rice and cereals.
The batter must also be fermented to the right degree to ensure it gives great-tasting Idli and Dosa.
Packaged Idli and Dosa batter is fast becoming popular, with most stores stocking several packets for their customers. Setting up a batter manufacturing unit from home or a small premise is fairly inexpensive.
45. Air Conditioner Maintenance
Nowadays, air conditioners are essential for several households and most offices. Hence, there is an ever-increasing demand for small businesses that can offer excellent maintenance of these expensive appliances.
Trends nowadays indicates that people are willing to sign annual contracts for the maintenance of their air conditioners.
All you need is some essential equipment required to service air conditioners and skilled manpower who can perform the tasks. Acquiring skills in the maintenance and repair of air conditioners- especially window and split types- is fairly easy.
46. Renting Scooters and Motorcycles
Tourists, salesmen, and small business owners look to hire scooters and motorcycles while visiting a town or city.
Renting such a two-wheeler saves them precious time and offers ease of commuting. You can open a scooter and motorcycle rental business with a small investment.
You need not rush into buying a fleet of vehicles. A couple of two-wheelers will suffice to begin with. However, you will need to get proper licensing, insurance, and permits before renting out these vehicles on a short-term basis.
47. Employee Background Checks
With most places in India witnessing high labor migration, several companies now resort to employee background checks. This means they verify information provided by a jobseeker through an external agency.
Checks include verification of work experience and educational qualifications. This is a relatively simple and low-investment business to open.
You will need a database of companies that require employee background checks, computers, and landline telephones to open this small business idea.
48. Handicrafts(Creative Small Business Idea in India)
An excellent low-investment small business, anyone can start buying and selling handicrafts. Generally, handicrafts are made in rural areas.
However, glitzy showrooms charge exorbitant rates for the stuff, which they usually procure relatively cheap.
You, too, can enter this huge market by buying handicrafts from different regions near you and selling them at reasonable rates.
Once again, the handicraft market is always high because they are also given away as gifts or used for home and office décor.
49. Skin and Beauty Treatment(Small Business Idea for Men and Women)
Increasingly men are becoming beauty conscious. Opening a small business offering skin and beauty services is an excellent small investment option for men and women skilled in providing skin and beauty treatment.
You can design your therapies for glowing skin, anti-aging, and facelifts.
This business can also be opened from home, provided you have ample space and privacy for clients. Offering herbal and natural therapies will help you stay ahead of the competition.
50. Mushroom Harvesting
Mushrooms are considered a delicacy and fetch fairly high prices in the market. They are very nutritious as food.
Hence, governments of various Indian states provide subsidies and facilities to people who can harvest mushrooms. This is a great low-investment small business idea.
You will need to set up a greenhouse with a controlled temperature to get the right crop. Mushroom spores are readily available from state-run cooperatives and agricultural shops. Bulk customers for mushrooms are easy to find.
51. Mobile Phone Repair/ Accessories/ Recharge
India will have nearly 800 million smartphone users by the end of 2022. Further, this figure will grow exponentially as more brands and cheaper variants enter the market.
Consequently, the demand for outlets and persons who offer repairs of mobile phones is expected to increase manifold. You can also sell accessories and credit recharge.
52. Meal Service (Tiffin)
One of the best small business ideas for women. Nowadays, the demand for home and workplace delivery of meals has increased vastly. If you launch a start-up around this concept, you are definitely going to get successful in 2023.
You can launch your small business with low investment right from your kitchen by preparing fresh, wholesome meals and supplying them to offices and homes.
We have already covered such business ideas here. You can check the best suitable for you from the list of 160 business ideas.
Extra: Broken Glass
Strange as it may sound, a massive market exists for broken glass. Millions of glass bottles that cannot be recycled, as discarded daily in India.
Shards of broken glass are used in building compound walls of bungalows. They deter robbers from scaling the compound wall to gain access to the bungalow.
Glass shards also prevent reptiles like snakes from slithering over the compound wall. A word of caution: Dealing with broken glass can be hazardous and has to be done with extreme care.
Extra: Apiary & Honey
Here is one great small business idea with low investment, provided you have a garden or open plot of land. Setting up an apiary to breed honeybees is inexpensive.
You will also require some essential equipment to extract honey from honeycombs. Homemade honey fetches a great price.
Royal Jelly, produced for the queen bee, commands a high price in the market from individuals and medical companies.
Remember, having ample capital to invest in a small business of your choice is not enough. You also require the necessary skills to ensure its proper functioning.
Before entering any venture, it is advisable to know licensing procedures and other legalities.
It is better to legitimize your business since it can help you get loans and subsidies in the future. It will also protect you against any lawsuits.