9 Great Small Town Side Business Ideas

Many would-be entrepreneurs assume that they need to live in a big city to strike it rich. Nothing could be further from the truth and recent studies back this up. In many cases, a small town can be the perfect place to launch your next enterprise. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Niche Apparel

Regardless of whether or not your hometown is a tourist hot spot, selling apparel with a regional flavor can be quite profitable. Start off by printing up t-shirts and sweatshirts emblazoned with your town’s name along with a logo. Use local idioms and inside jokes to boost the cool factor of your products.

Car Wash

Unlike developed urban areas, small towns feature a lot of dirt roads. That in turn leads to a lot of filthy cars. A fixed or mobile car wash doesn’t require much investment capital to get started and you’ll never want for business. A mobile detailing service is another smart move.

Local Guided Tours

No matter where you live, there are bound to be natural or historical points of interest worth checking out. Though they may seem old hat to you, they’re likely to be appealing to visitors. Leading tour groups around town by car or bike can make for an extremely profitable side business.

Pedicab Taxi Service

If you’d like to get a little exercise while you’re making money, a pedicab taxi service is the business for you. During the summer, vacationers will no doubt account for the bulk of your customers. During the rest of the year, weekend revelers out on the town will keep you busy.

Bed and Breakfast

City dwellers love nothing more than going to the country for a weekend and enjoying life at a slower pace. Your home can be a major money maker if you’re willing to play host to vacationers. Delivering an intimate lodging experience isn’t tough if you’ve got a house with personality.

Recreational Rentals

A rental business geared towards visitors to your little hamlet is a smart way to capitalize on seasonal tourism. Whether it’s bicycles, canoes, ice skates or ski equipment, there are dozens of ways to create a thriving rental enterprise. If you have a camp or cottage to rent, all the better.

Specialty Organic Farm

Regardless of your location or climate, there’s an agricultural niche waiting to be exploited in your town. If you adopt an organic model, your produce will net much higher prices. Pick something that’s highly specific to your region and sell it locally. You can expand to sales in other areas of the country later.

Antique Store

Small towns tend to be treasure troves of forgotten gear from bygone eras. With an antique store, you can pick up these old gems cheaply and sell them to visitors passing through. If you’d like to really boost your profits, use online auction sites like eBay to get the best prices.

Export a Specialty

Just about every small town has a local specialty that sets it apart. Whether it’s a food or some sort of craft, what you find blasé is often novel to others. You can make a bundle by shipping your hometown specialty to customers across the country or around the world.

Getting Off the Ground

As incubators for new businesses, small towns have many advantages. Since they tend to be cheaper across the board, input costs are minimized. Small towns also offer fewer distractions for those that need to focus. If you’ve got the necessary vision and drive, any idea can thrive in your small town.

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