Have you ever thought about launching a business in a small town? Probably, it seems to you like the worst possible idea. However, it is the biggest mistake many people make. The local community of small towns also needs new grocery stores, cleaning services, coffee shops, etc. Still don’t know how to launch a business in a rural area? This article is right for you! It provides the readers with the best 25 small-town business ideas in 2023 and presents the most effective startup financing options.
Startup Financing Options
Small business financing is the most important issue for all entrepreneurs. Launching your own company involves huge expenses, so choosing the right financing option is crucial. Below, you can see the main ways to finance your small business.
Personal loans from banks are an excellent way to finance your business. They typically come with interest rates of 2,49%, which is significantly less than other types of loans. However, it is often complicated to obtain money this way. Unlike other financing options, banks require borrowers to have a good credit score to get approval.
While traditional loans often require a hard credit check and a good credit history, there are various alternatives for people with bad credit. Numerous online lenders approve bad credit borrowers and allow them to get the money on the same or the next business day. For example, 15M Finance connects its clients with reputable online lenders enabling them to obtain cash within 24 hours. However, be prepared that this borrowing option is one of the most expensive ones.
Credit Union Loans
Borrowing money from a credit union is an excellent business financing idea. Credit unions often have lower credit score requirements than banks and lower interest rates than online lenders. However, you must be a member of the financial institution to be able to apply for loans.
A small-business grant is the cheapest but the most difficult financing option for your startup. Different nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and corporations offer startup funding without needing to repay the money. However, getting such financing is often complicated and requires much effort.
25 Best Businesses to Start in a Small Town
Despite many biases, small towns are often excellent places to implement different business ideas. Below, you can see the main small-town businesses that thrive.
#1. Coffee Shop & Bar
Launching a coffee shop is one of the best small-town business ideas you can implement. People worldwide drink coffee, so opening a coffee shop is always a perfect option. While people typically drink coffee in the first part of the day, you can increase your income from the business by transforming your coffee shop into a bar in the evening.
Do you want to get extra profits for your coffee shop in the evening or at night? Start serving alcohol! It helps attract customers not only in the daytime and makes your business more successful. However, you need to choose the right design that suits coffee shops and bars to successfully implement this small-town business idea.
#2. Lawn and Gardening Service
Small-town residents typically have a lot of grass, trees, and bushes in their gardens. Therefore, the launch of lawn and gardening services has a significant chance of becoming a successful business in small towns.
One of the main advantages of such local businesses is their predictability and stability. Once you find customers, they are likely to continue using your service if it maintains high quality.
Furthermore, this idea suits low-income people, as purchasing the necessary equipment costs up to $500.
Opening a cafe or a restaurant is a profitable small-town business option if you have sufficient capital and are not afraid of competition. Analyze the market of your town and open your own unique restaurant. It is vital to pay attention to other cafes in your city, as it would be pointless to open a fifth Italian restaurant if there are no establishments with good Chinese cuisine in your town.
#4. Food Truck Business
Renting a food truck may be an excellent alternative if you don’t have sufficient capital to open a restaurant. Food trucks allow you to drive your workplace to different locations and earn money by selling food at various local events, such as festivals, concerts, and markets.
#5. Ice Cream Shop
Ice cream shops are the best business for small towns in the summer. While ice cream is one of the most often bought products this season, launching your ice cream shop may bring you a good income.
#6. Local Grocery Store
Opening local grocery stores is one of the best small-town business ideas you can implement in 2023. People always need places to buy food, detergents, and household supplies, so a grocery store is a business everyone needs.
When opening a store, it is essential to attract clients, as people tend to choose known brands instead of newly appeared ones. Therefore, you can focus on the quality of your products and cooperate with local farmers to provide your clients with the freshest meat, fruits, and vegetables.
People from different parts of the Earth love good wine and cheese. Therefore, if you are going to run your own small business, a wine or cheese shop is an excellent small or large-town business idea.
#7. Hair Salon / Barber Shop
What business does every small town need? A good hair salon! If the beauty industry is your passion and you enjoy styling people’s hair, opening a hair salon or a barber shop may be an excellent small-town business opportunity.
Small towns tend to lack hairdressers and other beauty specialists, so opening your salon or barber shop can bring you profit even in a small community of rural areas.
#8. Real Estate Business
Opening a real estate agency is a perfect business idea for a megapolis and a small town. People buy and sell properties worldwide daily, so being a real estate company business owner is a promising idea.
#9. Computer Services and Phone Repair
Technical problems regularly occur, so the demand for people capable of solving these issues is always high. Therefore, computer or phone repair may be an idea for a lucrative business.
#10. Cleaning Service
Cleaning services are becoming increasingly popular worldwide, allowing people to use the services of smaller and larger companies. However, small towns often still lack them, making running a cleaning service company in your small town a great idea.
#11. Clothing Boutique
Buying even basic clothing necessities in small towns is complicated, making people drive to other, larger cities to find the right clothes. Therefore, opening your small-town shop can benefit both you and your town’s residents.
#12. Local Flower Shop
Flowers are one of the most popular gifts for any occasion, making opening a flower shop a great option for megapolises and small towns. Furthermore, it is a fairly inexpensive business idea compared to other small-town business options, like opening a restaurant.
The costs of launching a florist business range from $10,000 to $50,000, while the cost of running a car wash company starts from $40,000 and can reach $300,000. Therefore, if flowers are your passion and you can’t invest too much in your business, opening a local flower shop may be an excellent solution.
#13. Thrift Store
While buying new clothes is not affordable for everyone, a thrift shop is an excellent alternative. Opening a physical or online thrift store may benefit any small town, as it helps people find alternative buying options for their budget.
#14. Car Wash or Gas Station
An own auto is a “must-have” for most Americans due to the underdeveloped public transport system in the country. However, buying a vehicle is not enough, as it is necessary to maintain its good appearance. Therefore, opening a local car wash will be beneficial for small-town residents. A good idea is to open a gas station with additional services, operating side by side with a car wash.
#15. Home Improvement Business
A home improvement business is an excellent idea for a small-town business, allowing you to earn on things you can do well. A self-repair of the house is often complicated for individuals, so using home improvement services is becoming increasingly common.
So, you can earn on remodeling, modernizing, and repairing people’s houses.
#17. Electronics Dealership
The demand for electronics is always huge, so it is one of the most necessary areas for the local community of any city. Today, the commercial drone market is especially popular in the industry, predicted to grow significantly in the near future.
#18. Pet Grooming
Another inexpensive idea for a business in small towns is pet grooming. Americans love their pets and want them to look neat and tidy, so the demand for pet groomers is always high. Furthermore, they can work from home, making this option more convenient and attractive.
#19. Bed and Breakfast
A bed and breakfast, or B&B, is a small hotel or private house offering overnight accommodation with breakfast. Bed and breakfast owners typically live in the place they rent, sharing their homes with travelers.
If you want to help tourists enjoy your hometown and earn money simultaneously, a bed and breakfast is a great idea for a low-maintenance local business!
#20. Healthy Food Business
If you are interested in the food and beverage industry, opening a health food store or specialty food shop may be a successful small-town business idea. It is essential to analyze your town’s market to choose the right business idea.
#21. Tutoring Business
While school education is often insufficient for students, they often need additional classes. Therefore, becoming a tutor is always a great business idea for small and big cities. If you are an expert in a specific subject, like math or chemistry, you can earn money by sharing your knowledge with students.
#22. Hardware Store
Opening a hardware shop is an especially solid business idea for small towns. Stuff breaks, and people always need tools to fix it. However, small towns often lack specialized stores for such purposes, making opening hardware stores actual. Provide your clients with excellent customer service, sell all the necessary equipment, and enjoy the numerous business opportunities the store brings you.
#23. Fitness Business
Whether you live in a megapolis or a small town, the boutique fitness trend is everywhere. Now, people actively care about their health, so opening a gym may be an excellent idea for a small business.
#24. Bowling Alley
While opening a bowling alley is an expensive investment, it can bring its owner a great income and become the center of a town’s social life. If you decide to launch a bowling alley, calculate your costs, including food and drinks, as they can increase your income significantly.
# 25 Bookstore
Larger retail book stores like Barnes & Noble and Books-A-Million are seeing a slight resurgence. While these larger retailers are unlikely to open in small towns, local entrepreneurs have an opportunity to take advantage of the public’s renewed interest in book retailers.