Starting a business in a small town has its upsides. Firstly, smaller capital and lower overhead is required to start business. And secondly, it’s easier to organize a business in a small town where people know each other. It is a known fact that the economy of rural areas is not as buoyant as urban areas yet, some die hard individuals are still running profitable businesses from such rural areas.

Also, urban areas do offer better infrastructure and equipment than what you would see in rural areas. Rural areas are known to have their own restrictions, and if you carefully look, they also have a lot of advantages than urban areas. It is these advantages you need to focus on, be satisfied with the available ones within you and then make the most out of them.

There are some businesses that can be started only in rural areas; agriculture for example is one instance. Knowing how to start a business in a rural setting is useless if you don’t have a good business idea. So whatever you decide on, make sure you give it enough thought and effort.

25 Best Small Business Ideas for Small Towns, Villages and Rural Areas

1. Production of Organic Produce

Producing and selling fruits and vegetables that are free from chemicals can be lucrative if done the right way. This is because more and more people are becoming informed health wise. And they are now aware of the health risks of taking foods that are not free of pesticides and chemical fertilizers.

So, you can start a local farming business which adopts strictly organic methods to cultivate vegetables, fruits, sauces, and local delicacies. Your business would be a big hit, as people would come from far and near to buy your “safe” products.

For this type of business, you can opt to sell produce that are officially labeled organic or still organic with no label. Some people forgo the official label due to the large amount of paperwork involved. Also, the regulations might be too strict or taxing for a start-up company.

2. Construction

If you have good knowledge of carpentry and woodwork, then this is the ideal venture to pursue. In rural areas, farmers and homeowners might not have the skills needed to put up structures (e.g. barns, chicken coops, etc) that they need for residential or business purposes. Thus, starting a small construction company might be the best business option.

3. Cleaning Company

Large farms or ranches might need extra pairs of hands in tidying up their quarters. Therefore, a small cleaning company might be able to offer their weekly or monthly services. As a smart entrepreneur, you should know that services based business are conscious of the fact that continued patronage is needed, so it is best to offer ‘packaged contracts’ wherein a discount is given if they sign up for a contracted amount of period (e.g. six months).

4. Family Salon

Opening a family salon is a great option for people who are charming, gorgeous and creative. People who live in rural areas might not have access to this kind of professional service, so this is a potential niche to exploit.

5. Selling Fresh Eggs

Eggs from grass-fed chickens are now starting to be sought after by groceries and specialty shops. Starting a poultry business or rearing does not require a lot of land. However, state laws need to be checked to see if the requirements are to be met without difficulty.

6. Vending Buffalo Milk

One of the best producers of milk around is a buffalo. Under the right care and treatment, high quality milk can successfully be obtained. If you are skilled in raising, breeding, and milking buffaloes, the you can start this business on your own or with a couple of farmhands. For those who are not, you can opt to hire skilled farmhands to do all the work instead.

7. Chili pepper Farming

For those with good farming skills, farming options are the obvious choices for start-up businesses. All you need is a small greenhouse to accommodate the bags and pots where chili is normally grown. Add a lot of sunlight and fertile soil and you can make a lot of money selling quality chili to groceries, shops, and neighbors.

8. Tea Gardening

Tea gardening is a simple yet lucrative option for people who are passionate about tea. You do not need a big tract of land for planting tea shrubs; in fact, you can even opt to grow it in their balconies or planters. For this choice, the soil needs to be fully drained and sandy.

9. Coffee Bean Farming

If you are passionate about coffee, then you are halfway there. The only thing you need is to know how to start a coffee bean farming business and you are good to go. The only requirements are polythene bags, a shady area, coffee seeds, and a business license.

10. Bonsai Tree Farming

There is a growing niche for selling bonsai trees in the market today. Before embarking on this venture, however, you need to have patience, bonsai planting skills, and a green thumb.

11. Vegetable garden farm

You can consider agriculture as a big opportunity. You can start producing the vegetables you think will best grow. It is always better to begin with two, and then as you double your chances of making profit, you can now increase the level of your production. You are required to consult an expert before concluding the feasibility of that option.

12. Camping site

You can start a camping site that is well equipped with tents and other necessary things that makes it look complete. Advertise this even in the urban newspapers and you will see people trooping to your camping site. Kids and students are always looking out for faraway camping spots and this can be exactly what they want. And if you still have shop instead of land, you can still begin to sell camping material there; a lot of groups that came for camping near rural areas will find it helpful.

13. Writing studio

If you have a creative mind and you are good at writing interesting and beautiful stories, then you can write about life in the rural areas because rural areas have serene surroundings that is quiet ambiance which cannot be found in urban areas.

You do not have to become a professional writer to be a good writer. All that is required of you is innovation and ability to encourage, educate and excite people in your stories. Immediately you get the hang of it, you can begin to freelance on large scale and even start hiring people to work for you.

14. Become a local goods Retailer

You can start retailing merchandise in rural environment because many small businesses do experience difficulty in selling enough merchandise to have wholesale pricing. Retailing local sourced merchandise can serve as an attractive and encouraging shopping experience for tourists vocational in rural areas.

15. Tour operator

You can capitalize on harried tourists by offering local information, transportation options, guides to local festivities and sources for local merchandise.

16. Broadband internet provider

This business idea might sound too risky and capital intensive but it is doable and potentially rewarding. You can establish an internet service provider in your area if they are experiencing slow internet connection. This internet service provider is sometimes known as an ISP. You can start small by reselling services from major data carriers.

17. Sell global products

Most businesses in a small community focus on locally made products. However, there’s always a market for global products, too. If you can dare to disrupt the status quo by offering global products for sale in your small community, you will make more profit than you ever imagined.

18. Sell fixed items

Most of the time, people throw away their gadgets and appliances when they get broken or pick up minor faults. If you are very good at fixing things, you can make a fortune by collecting and fixing such items, and then selling them to those who need them but cannot afford the cost of new ones. This business opens two income doors; fixing broken things and selling things you have fixed.

19. Local clothing

People in living in small communities love to distinguish themselves with their traditional styles of fashion. For this reason, you may have a hard time selling outlandish clothing. But if you dance to the tune of the people by making their kind of clothes, you will make lots of profit. You don’t have to be the maker. You can find one or two tailors in the community and negotiate with them. They produce, and you sell.

20. Local jewelry

If you have an artistic talent that can enable you to turn local items into fascinating jewelry, then why not start a jewelry making business? If your neighborhood is rich in pottery, shells, driftwood, beads, or rocks, you can turn these items into beautiful pieces of jewelry such as earrings, necklaces, bracelets, pendants, and so on.

21. Share your knowledge

If you are good at something, then you can build a business around your knowledge. You could be a sports trainer, a part-time teacher, a business coach, a music instructor, and so on. If you really know your stuff and you can successfully impart the knowledge on others, then you will make lots of profit.

22. Bakery

Every town loves a bakery. You can start one and offer fresh baked bread, cakes, cookies and pastries, and so on. Having a good knowledge of baking would be a good advantage. But if you are not good at it, you can hire hands that are gifted in the art. There’s always a market for baked foods. So, you will never lose.

23. Florist

People buy flowers for special occasions; from the happy ones like birthdays and weddings to the sad ones like funerals and in memorial services. So, if you can start a business that sells flowers for all occasions, events, and holidays, you will make lots of money.

24. Laundry services

Everyone loves his or her clothes clean. So, a laundry business would be a great idea for entrepreneurs living in small towns. It’s a recession proof business, since people need to clean their clothes at all times. And it’s a very profitable business as well. All you need to start is a washing machine, pressing iron, and drier.

25. Gym

No matter how rural your community may be, there’s always going to be individuals who know the benefits of exercise and staying fit. And such individuals would readily patronize a local gym. The trick here is that you should set up a gym that suits local interest. For instance, if your town comprises Yoga lovers, then include a Yoga studio in your gym.

26. Start a Firewood Delivery Business

So, you can see now that there are many businesses you can start and be successful at even when you live in a small town. The most important thing you should do is to carefully identify your area of interest. You may also need some expert advice to set your business rolling.

In conclusion, i want you to know that there are so many lucrative businesses you can start small in rural areas and yet make it big and interesting. Staying in a rural area is no reason why you will not be able to succeed if you want to. All you just need is a determined mindset and a good business strategy.

Ajaero Tony Martins