small business ideas 2021
Photo by Artem Beliaikin from Pexels

Yes, it is possible to start a business that could one day become a multinational company without breaking the bank. All you need is the right small business idea to ignite your enterprising nature. Small businesses are great because they require little to no capital and do not usually need a physical base or office.

If you’ve ever wished to stop working under someone, here is a guide with over 40 small business ideas and plans to get you on your way to becoming your own boss and owning your own business.

Fashion Designing

With a little capital to purchase the necessary equipment, you can commence this lucrative small business but only if you already have some knowledge in tailoring. If that is not the case, you can start by becoming an apprentice to a good tailor with the goal of establishing your own business.

You can distinguish yourself from the roadside tailors by having a brand name, adhering to a strict timetable for each work you are to handle, providing a variety of well-illustrated styles for your clients’ perusal, making home deliveries and investing in a customised label for your brand. All these take very little to achieve in terms of finance but require unwavering dedication.


Every now and then, people go searching for handymen who can fix their sink or unclog their pipes. If you have the knowledge and the knack for fixing such things, you can open a plumbing business; this small business could see you making a whole load of cash in a very short time. You can print out handbills and distribute to inform people about your business. You can also put your business on SOCIAL MEDIA where it can get to a large number of people around you.


Never underestimate the work of your hands. Anyone who has done a DIY paintjob can appreciate the work of a professional painter. If you have the necessary skills or are willing to learn, you will find this small business a very profitable enterprise. Having a catalogue of designs for the client to choose from, billing reasonably, as well as, using only quality materials can widen your clientele and ensure their loyalty and patronage.


Furniture making is a small business idea you will likely never regret considering. Schools, homes, offices and what have you, often need chairs, tables, stools, bedframes and the likes; as such, carpentry remains an extremely buoyant business. Put some creative flair into your furniture designs, it will set you apart from the bunch of roadside carpenters and attract important customers.

Home Lesson Teacher

Offer your services as a private tutor, all you need is some patience and a good knowledge of the subjects you want to teach – you can gain teaching experience as you go. A lot of money can be made putting young and old students through in their academic work. You can also help those who are looking to sit for national and international examinations come off with flying colours.

Solar Panel Installation

Solar panels have become hot cakes as can be seen by the number of roofs they appear. Get in on the action by acquiring the knowledge needed to create your own installation business. Do not rely on just word of mouth to publicise your business, take it online via social media by posting pictures and text about what you do.

Hair Dressing

Ever in demand, hair dressers make a lot of money from making people beautiful. The mobility of your service and your sensitivity to individual customer needs will further increase your clientele.

Barbing Services

Similarly, barber shop services are often sought after by men and women looking for a neat professional trim. Although you can offer home services, you will need a salon where customers can come to have a haircut. However, if you are good at the job, you will make more than enough to cover the rent and other expenses incurred for the comfort of customers.

Graphic Designer

In today’s world where everyone is invested in taking their business online and therefore needs attractive designs for their social media, blogs, websites and what have you, the graphic designer has never been more important. Your knowledge of the principle of designs – colours, shapes and fonts will help you produce great projects that will keep the client happy and satisfied.

Fitness Instructor

The perfect body is a commodity everyone wants; it is therefore not surprising that fitness instructors are in great demand. As a fitness instructor, you can help clients achieve their desired shape and weight through exercise and healthy living. This small business idea is quite remunerative.

Freelance Writing

Be it for the Internet or otherwise, good writing is widely clamoured for. There are a good number of jobs you can get as a freelance writer that can fetch you some cool cash. Aside from commissions, you can also write magazine articles, blog posts, news articles, short stories, poetry, etc. and submit to paying markets. Inklancers is a great platform to sell your writing services.

CV Writing

New job seekers are ever on the lookout for a professional curriculum vitae writer who will write or touch up their new CVs in such a way that they will find good jobs easily. Ensure that the price of your service is reasonable so as to attract clients.


As a photographer, you can earn money from covering events like marriages, funerals and birthday parties. You can as well run a photo studio where clients can have photo shoot sessions. Also, you can create visual art with the camera and sell these online. Creating a social media account where you post your photographs will help publicize what you do.

Personal Cook

Many people, especially those from the working-class, do not have the time to prepare the meals they want to eat. You can offer your services to such people by creating handbills, posters and social media posts. To succeed in this small business, you must keep detailed notes of your clients’ dish specifications. 

Snack Making

This small business idea is very profitable. You can make snacks like meat pies, eggrolls and buns, and distribute to small shop owners in good quantities. You can also make branded chin-chins, chips and peanuts to sell, do however ensure that these branded snacks can last for several days without losing its quality.

Domestic Cleaner

If you are up for it, you can offer cleaning services to professionals and such others who are looking for such. This service requires patience and fastidiousness. It can also be an opportunity to meet people looking for other services you can offer.

Makeup Artist

Everyone wants to be beautiful, it is therefore not surprising that makeup artists are one of the most sought after. Good makeup artists are however a dime a dozen but your ability to be quick, mobile, flexible and reliable will single you out from the pack.

Interior Designing

If you have an eye for good furniture and a great sense of modern style and colour composition, you should try your hand in interior designing. Ensure you document every project you undertake for future references. Also, have an active online presence on social media platforms like Instagram.

Event Planning

Event planning involves organisational prowess, attentiveness to details, good communication skills and an imaginative power. You can specialise in one kind of event, like weddings or birthdays, or ply your trade in every kind of event.


Be responsible for delivering the Item 7 every guest tries to patiently wait for at events. You will require a team to successfully cater an event and will have to work with the event planner, if there is any, to ensure everything goes smoothly. Just remember that an event is not considered successful except the food served is great.

Day Care Service

You can offer your services to working class parents with young children. This is a very important business which requires attentiveness, safety consciousness and trustworthiness. You will have to get a safe and appropriate space for the kids in your care as well as the necessary permits to operate.  

Voiceover Artist

If you possess an attractive voice and know how to enunciate your words with punch and emotion, you should consider doing voiceovers for a living. You can work with broadcast stations, advertising companies and the likes to bring their scripts to life.

Audio and Video Editing

If you are patient and determined enough to learn the ropes of audio and video editing, this small business can earn you huge amounts of money. Many business people from different walks of life are now in the market for quality audio-visual promotional content and are willing to pay a lot of money to get the best.


Whichever way you look at it, cakes – be it birthday cakes, wedding cakes, etc. – and confectioneries like cupcakes are in perpetual demand. You can bake visually appealing cakes and confectioneries and share pictures of these on your social media to attract customers from far and near.     

Property Manager

You can help manage properties like commercial and residential buildings on behalf of people who live abroad or in distant places. You can also oversee building projects and connect potential buyers with people looking to sell properties.

Jewellery Maker

If you can design necklaces, earring, bangles and what not using materials such as beads, gold and silver chains, you should consider opening a small business as a jewellery maker. You could operate right out of the social media page where you share pictures of your craft.

Disc Jockey

With the added benefit of the cool factor and having lots of fun, the disc jockey can make a lot of money providing well curated music for events. As a disc jockey, you can liven up the event with great music or set the tone with every selection you make.

Club Hype Man

Hype men are people who, using their voice and mannerism, get people excited about something in clubs or concerts. They are professional praise singers with charisma who can amp up any event or gathering.

Dance Instructor

Dance instructors can operate from dance studios or offer mobile services where they go to the client to teach well-choreographed dances in a variety of genres.


There is a paying market for keyboard accompanists, especially in places of worship. Your versatility and adroitness in playing the musical instrument will keep your clients happy and satisfied.


It is no longer news that blogging can make you serious money. With dedication, good communicative ability and the knowledge of best blogging practices, you could attract enough regular traffic to start monetising your blog.

Music Teaching

Music is an important part of our lives; everyone and their mother wishes they knew how to sing or play a musical instrument. You can share the theoretical and practical knowledge of music you know for good money.


Painting, sculpting, moulding and just generally creating art is a process that requires a lot of patience and dedication. While a few artists get their big break early on in their career, many others have to wait longer. In any case, when art rewards, it rewards greatly.


It is time you stopped losing friends and started making money from your fixation with correct grammar. Offer your services as a proof-reader, it will require patience to do the necessary research and crosschecking, not to mention, attentiveness to details, however minute.

Delivery Services

A good knowledge of the city you live in and a fast means of transport are the major things you need to start a successful delivery business.

Thrift Shop Vendor

The selling of second hand clothes and household items can prove to be a very lucrative business. Good pricing and a quality stock will certainly attract patronage.

Smartphone Repair

From the veranda of your house, and with the knowledge of how smartphone generally works and a few instruments, you can start your phone repair business. Ensure you use quality parts for your repairs otherwise you will be met with many unhappy customers.

EBook Publishing

Books in EPUB and PDF formats have become very popular and money can be made from the publishing of such. Wattpad and Okadabooks are useful platforms for those looking to publish eBooks.


This is a great small business idea for those looking to start a business with very little capital. Dropshipping offers so many advantages over regular buying and selling and with the advances being made with online shopping; the sky is the limit for those involved in this business.

Car Tracking Installation

The rise in car theft brought about a new business idea. Car trackers ensure that you can trace the GPS location of your car wherever it may be. People who deal in car trackers and their installation make a lot of money from it.

Perfume Making

Perfume oils and sprays are hot cakes today because everyone wants to smell good. Branding your products can differentiate you from every Tom, Dick and Harry involved in the perfume business.

Face Mask Making

The making of facemask in today’s world is no doubt a great business idea. Do ensure you are making use of good materials that can protect customers who buy your masks. Interestingly, anyone can start this business, even as a temporary enterprise.

These small business ideas have the potentials of becoming large corporation but it takes creativity and dedication to actualise.

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