Some of the most profitable small businesses may surprise you. You'll find various ideas below, from home improvement to health care, but they all have one thing in common—earning potential.
Based on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's list of in-demand businesses and the fastest growing industries according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are small business ideas with high hopes of growth over the next decade.
Fitness or physical therapy services
The pandemic seems to have permanently changed the fitness landscape. More than ever, people are exercising at home and finding wellness inspiration online. This is why at-home fitness equipment, programs, and mobile therapy are in high demand.
If you already have credentials, now is a great time to put them to work for you by starting a fitness coaching business or offering mobile physical therapy sessions. If you are interested in fitness but haven't pursued any official certifications, this may be a wise time to invest in training that allows you to offer these services. Though we all hope the pandemic will be over soon, the at-home fitness trend looks to be here to stay.
The job outlook for fitness trainers and instructors is growing faster than average, with an expected 15% increase from 2019 to 2029. Physical therapists can expect job opportunities to grow 18% within that same timeframe.
It should be no surprise that technical services are the fastest-growing industries. The outlook for software developers looks promising, with an expected growth of 22% by 2029. App development is a niche that continues to grow, as it's projected that there will be four billion-plus mobile device users by 2023. Launch your business to help build and update apps for clients big and small.
If you're without a background in programming, consider taking online courses to build your skill set. The most popular languages for app development include JAVA, Kotlin, Objective-C, Swift, C#, and Python.
Online consulting services
Once you've mastered your field, work with other businesses to solve complex problems as a consultant. You could help in various areas, like building their social media presence, managing finances, or optimizing internal resources. The job outlook for management analysts is 11% growth by 2029, much faster than the national average.
Whether your background is in HR, finance, marketing, or operations, put your expertise to use by opening a consulting firm.
Dropshipping is a retail practice that involves shipping products to customers through third-party vendors. This means you never store or handle the products. In turn, dropshipping requires less capital to get started than traditional retail methods.
From 2019 to 2025, the global dropshipping market size is expected to grow by 28.8%. What's causing this massive expansion? With the rise of online shopping and e-commerce, more product sales happen through online stores without inventory.
Before starting a dropshipping business, test your product to ensure the quality so that you can confidently promote it.
Home improvement services
As house prices continue to rise across the United States, fewer people choose to move. Instead, they may decide to renovate and upgrade their current homes. People are also spending more time at home due to the pandemic—giving them more reason and motivation to improve their personal space.
Many people hire professionals to help with their improvement projects from new flooring to updating bathrooms. Considering your skills as an electrician, plumber, or general handyman, consider beginning a home improvement business in your area. According to BLS data, construction occupations are expected to grow 4% from 2019 to 2029. This includes carpenters, floor installers, drywall installers, electricians, roofers, and painters.
With more people working remotely and the global expansion of e-commerce, the need for cybersecurity solutions has skyrocketed. Firms that help companies plan and implement security measures for IT systems, devices, and networks will be increasingly in demand. Your small business could play a big role in helping to reduce data breaches and cyberattacks.
The BLS predicts that the need for information security analysts will increase 31% by 2029—much faster than the national average.
Event planning and virtual event planning
According to 2020 industry data, the global virtual events market is expected to grow 23.2% between 2020 and 2027. The BLS projects the job growth for convention, meeting, and event planners to be 8% between 2019-2029.
From charity fundraisers to conferences, event planning and virtual events are here to stay. Those seeking assistance with planning include corporations, educational institutions, non-profits, and associations.
Virtual events go beyond setting up a Zoom invite. They can involve video conferences, live streaming, broadcasting, trade shows, job fairs, and sales meetings. As a virtual event planner, you'll help arrange logistics, set the agenda, build enthusiasm, and drive marketing. You'll bring the event to life, even when it's virtual.
You don't need a specific degree or certification to plan events. You can offer your services through a small business if you're organized, creative, and dedicated to making an event a success.
Commercial cleaning services
According to the BLS, employment growth for building cleaning workers is expected to rise 4.8% and a whopping 9.6% for cleaning supervisors from 2019 to 2029.
Companies want to maintain clean, hygienic spaces during and after the pandemic. From restrooms to office space to classrooms, cleaning often is outsourced. With a commercial cleaning business, you can operate as a sole person with little startup costs and add team members as you grow.
Following the mass transition to online learning during the pandemic, there is an overwhelming demand for online tutoring. Research shows that the private tutoring market will grow globally 8.4% by 2027.
Starting a virtual tutoring business requires little equipment, and you may already have the skills to get started. Whether you're skilled at math or can play the piano, you can teach people new skills, all from the comfort of your home. Some common online tutoring subjects include preparing for college entrance exams, teaching a foreign language, and offering individualized help to students with special needs.
Start with what you know
The first step to forming a new small business is starting with your skillset. Consider your background and interests to find opportunities to build on, like turning your coding skills into an app prototype or using a piece of refinished furniture to launch a home goods store. Find a profitable small business idea by combining market opportunities and your unique skillsets. Check out our infographic below for more inspiration.