40 Small Town Business ideas That Will Thrive For Sure

Do you live in a small village or town? Have you been thinking of starting your own business? Do you want to know the most successful small town business ideas?

Before diving into the list, I’ll tell you that it’s good to know that you’ve decided to follow your entrepreneurial dreams.

No doubt, most of the businesses thrive in big cities, but there are many businesses that work properly in small towns or villages too.

Hence, you have a good chance of bringing your business vision into existence. The best part is that you’ll have to face lower competition and would need a little investment.

Small Town Business Ideas

These are the small-town business ideas that every community needs:

1. Pet Grooming Business

Many people in the United States keep pets. In 1988, 56% of people owned a pet. In 2016, the number has increased to 65%.

Now, the industry has become a $60 billion industry in the U.S states alone and it does not show any sign of slowing down in the near future.

If you’re living in a small town where people have their own pets, it can be a good business for you to start. If you offer good services, you’ll have many referrals.

Make sure you keep foods, toys, and clothing for the pets. The overall idea is that, if you could plan your pet grooming business, you can earn big profits in your hometown.

2. Clothing Boutique

Opening a cloth boutique is among the small town businesses that thrive. Most often, rural areas lack decent shopping centers. Therefore, many people have to drive long distances in order to buy good clothes.

That’s why starting this business will not only help you but also many residents in the vicinity.

You’ll need to make sure to keep pretty much stuff related to every age of people. Make sure to keep the trending and up-to-date fashioned clothes.

Any previous experience with clothes can be very helpful. However, you still can learn as people in the villages or small towns will let you know and suggest different things that might work over there.

3. Offer lawn care service

Lawn and Gardening Service is one of the profitable small town business ideas. Most of the rural areas have a lot of grass and gardens, and therefore, many people will require a person to take care of their lawn or gardens.

You can start this business by offering a few services in the beginning, and later expand to offer more services. A good thing about the small towns is that once you find a client, you’re likely to give services to him/her for years if you provide quality services at a reasonable price.

Hence, getting the first few clients will be the only challenge you’ll have to go through.

4. Grocery Store

A grocery store is another good business to start in a small town. Though it may not sound great, it is a practical recommendation, and you’ll see that the whole of your town will start depending on you.

There might already be a few grocery stores, but no need to worry at all. You need to check out if they’re covering the necessities of your town or not.

In case you think that the grocery store is a competitive business, or it is not your kind of business, then you should consider other small town business ideas on the list.

However, in the case otherwise, you can get into the business and provide the necessary products to your customers that other grocery stores do not provide.

5. Food Truck

Starting a food truck can be a good investment in many villages. However, it depends upon many factors, for example, the location, weather conditions of the village, and outdoor activities.

If you can drive your business to places having vibrant communities, and often have outdoor activities, such as sports, festivals, and weddings, etc., you can get good cash.

This business doesn’t cost much. Only the products would need buying as the truck can be rented. It is better to rent a food truck if you’re starting the business for the first time.

This will give you an idea if the business works properly in your village. If not, you can change your mind to start another business.

READ: 15 Renting Business Ideas With High Profit

6. Open a Carpentry Shop

Carpentry is a profitable business but it needs skills. If you’re a carpenter, you can start a carpentry business in a small town.

But, if you do not know the work, you must learn it first. This is a challenging job and may take you a long time to learn. However, the competition in the industry is less, often you’ll not find a single carpentry store in small towns.

If you’re the only one who has the carpentry business, the whole town is gonna come to get your services. You can hire a few employees too if you feel the need as the work may be more to be done.

7. Tutoring Service

Tutoring service is among the small town businesses that thrive. But this isn’t for everyone to start. Only the current teachers or former teachers with a great reputation in the teaching field are the best fit for the work.

The tutoring business can be handled alone however, other teachers can also be hired to help out whenever needed.

Though it will pay you, if you take this noble profession to impart the knowledge for the betterment of others, it will be better. Also, help the students who might need it and are unable to pay.

8. Fish Farming business

Fish farming is lucrative aquatic farming that can flourish well in small towns. In order to be successful in the business, you’ll need to learn about the process of hatching fish eggs and then, grooming them to maturity.

Depending on your financial status, you can decide to start on either a large or small scale.If you decide to start small, you’ll be able to provide fish to people living in your town only.

In case, you take a big start, you can deliver and send the fish to the nearby areas too. Depending on the rural area you live in, your government may also help you set up the business by subsidizing, or providing the necessary equipment.

9. Gym/Exercise Studio

The fitness industry gives many small-town business opportunities. Based on the location, one can say if it will be successful or not.

If you’re living in a rural area where people have an interest in sports, and they really care about their fitness, then a gym or exercise studio can be a good business there.

You’ll have to buy the gym equipment, and this may need a medium investment. However, in order to decrease the initial startup cost, you can buy secondhand gym equipment in good condition.

10. Barber Shop

Everyone requires barber services, regardless of the age many times a year. Many young boys really care about their hair.

The quality haircut is something they can pay for as much as they’re asked. Hence, you can earn good bucks if you get into this business.

If you’re thinking of starting a barbershop, you must learn how to cut hair properly. This is easy, however, if you already have been in this business, it would be easy to ensure that you provide standard services as per your client’s needs. Therefore, your business will grow easily.

11. Gift card Shop

Gift card business is among the most profitable small town business ideas. According to the Greeting Cards Association, the annual sales of the greeting cards in America is 6.5 billion.

Many of these cards are bought from the big box stores, such as Walmart. People in a rural area do not access to such types of stores, and hence starting a gift card shop is a good business to start in a small town.

Even if you provide the greeting cards to your town only, you can earn a lot. You’ll need to carry many varieties of cards or templates, especially on a special occasion, such as festivals, events, birthdays, weddings, and parties.

12. Ice Cream Shop

Opening an ice cream shop will definitely draw a crowd. Keeping different types of ice cream and of various flavors is important.

You’ll have to make yourself familiar with the most popular ice cream flavors. The even more important thing is that you’ll have to make yourself ready to do work on weekends.

However, the ice cream shop is recommended for the areas that have warm weather for more months than winter.

13. Flower Shop

A flower shop is fairly an inexpensive business. The cooler is the only thing that may cost you a bit more, but it is vital to keep the flowers fresh and cool.

The people of the local community will be happy to see a flower shop in their area, however, you’ll still have to face the competition of the online flower delivery services.

Try to build a friendly relationship with the people in your target area. It will help you break their habits of ordering flowers online.

Reasonable prices, attention to details and good customer service are other ways to shine your business.

14. Start a landscape business

When you want to devote little time of your life to the business, then starting a landscaping business is the best choice.

Landscaping allows to do work at your own pace and anytime during the day. In addition, you enjoy the fresh air and work out your muscles.

It is quite easy to start offering landscaping services. However, if you’re starting on a large scale or have a big business vision, you might need extra cash for doing everything like a professional.

Setting up a small office, equipment, and tools and startup investment are the things you’ll need while starting.

15. Microbrewery

It is among the small town businesses that thrive. It grows along with its community. Make sure to start it near a market or restaurant.

Though the customers may be less, the brewery industry gives good profit margins. Before you start a microbrewery business, ask yourself if you’re a type of person suitable for this business.

A lot of your customers will sit with you and talk for long hours. That obviously would need you to be a type of person who can converse with others.

16. Massage Therapist

People in the small town suffer aches, and stress, like the people in the cities. If you’re a type of person, who loves to work with hands and meeting different people, then becoming a massage therapist can be a good business to start in your small town.

If you haven’t done a massage before, it might take a few weeks to learn. It also needs a license, however, there are a variety of schools and a program where you can enroll in order to obtain a license.

This business allows you to set your own working hours, and do work where ever you like. Most of the clients, once they get your services, will be asking for your services again and again.

17. Water refill station

If you’re living in a small town where people have difficulty finding clean water, then you should consider opening a water refill station.

It has a low running cost, and of course, it is a profitable business to start in small towns.

The water refilling station produces drinkable water and safe water. It is less costly than retailed water bottles. The business is likely to get many customers very soon.

18. Vape Shop

According to Quartz reports, Yelp has currently 10,951 vape shops in their lists. It seems a huge number as we believe that traditional smoking has declined.

It is true that it has declined but not as much as we think of it. Currently, there is a good space for new business owners in the industry.

Before you start the vape shop, make sure you know the state rules and regulations. In some states, starting a vape shop will be easier than in others.

You can also consult the vape industry coaching community to know more about the vaping business here.

19. Bakery

A bakery is needed in small towns in order to fill the needs of the people living there. Owning and operating a bakery isn’t easy, but it’s a business that can be incredibly rewarding.

Employing youth from the same town where you start a bakery business can further help you get customers.

However, if you have never been in this business before, you should research how to open a successful bakery. This also includes familiarizing yourself with the process of baking and charging customers.

20. Elderly care business

An elderly care business offers services such as walking help, transportation, diet monitoring, grooming assistance, and companionship, etc. The business requires persons who are:

  • Strong enough to see and manage the seniors in bad conditions.
  • Friendly to the seniors
  • Good communicator

You’ll also need to hire staff who can work comfortably in every circumstance. In order to grow your business, reach potential clients and ask them if they want your services.

Many seniors are nowadays alone in their homes, where no family member gives them a time or does not find time to even sit with them for a while.

Due to this reason, elder care businesses have shown a peak in recent years.

21. Poultry farming business

The best small town business ideas include a poultry farming business. It is about the raising of domestic birds for various purposes, especially for meat.

Chicken is an important source of animal protein and is an integral part of human life.  Therefore, this business offers an opportunity to earn huge money.

Poultry farms can be started on a small scale as well as on the commercial scale. Don’t think that the competition is stiff. It might be, but the demand is also high.

So, there is a space for new poultry farmers. It is the best fit for the entrepreneurs who are passionate about livestock production, farming and are comfortable with keeping birds.

22. Cleaning Service

Cleaning businesses are the easiest businesses to enter into and are profitable too. However, the cleaning work is totally different from what is required in the cities.

In many rural areas, you may not see the sparkling kitchen that you might have in cities. In addition, there will be a few businesses that might need the cleaning services, and hence, you’ll find only a few commercial cleaning contracts.

But that doesn’t mean that you will not find the clients. Everywhere there are people who feel difficulty doing the cleaning work themselves or sometimes, they do not have enough free time, therefore, this business will thrive in most places in the world.

Related: How to Start Your Own Cleaning Business?

23. Car Wash

People prefer to keep their vehicles free from dust. If there isn’t any car wash center in your town, then it might be a perfect opportunity for you.

Before you start a car wash, make sure you think wisely and decide carefully about its location.

The two main things that are gonna help you establish a successful car wash business are planning and a good location.

Therefore, before doing anything else, look upon these two. If you could choose a nice location and plan well, it surely is going to turn out well.

24. Sports Bar

Sports bars offer services for watching favorite sports events while allowing people to enjoy cold drinks and hot foods meanwhile.

This business is similar to a restaurant business or bar business. If you have experience in any of the two, you’ll surely handle the sports bar.

Many sports leagues and tournaments extend throughout the years, and hence, your business will attract the crowd throughout the year.

Good audio and video system, a place to sit, liquor license and cooking equipment are the things that should be on your list while starting a sports bar.

25. Bookstore

Bookstore can’t be dead, right? Definitely, YES. If you decide to open a bookstore in your small town, your main focus should be on the syllabus books.

However, you can think of other merchandise to bring additional customers into your store, as nowadays it is rare that people go into a bookshop just for books.

The additional products you can keep in your bookstore can be gifts, crafts, and e-readers. Such products will diversify your customers and hence, increase your revenue.

26. Electronics Dealer

Wanna try something new and out of the box? How about dealing with electronics? Don’t worry if it sounds strange to you. It’s worth a chance. Electronics offers a good business opportunity and is predicted to grow fast.

Dealing in general electronics is a good business to start in small towns. However, specializing in an electronic product and its accessories may be a better business in cities.

This is so because in a rural area there will be few people that might use that specific electronic you know about. Therefore, it wouldn’t be profitable and most of the time you’ll be free, as people wouldn’t need your services.

Related: 130 Manufacturing Businesses to Start With Low Investment

27. Coffee Shop and Bar

What would you do if your village or town population is small enough? What if you think the business might not be profitable with the available customers?

Merging two related businesses is what you can consider. Don’t get me wrong. You’ll have a coffee shop, but you will also keep some bar products too. That’s all.

Make your coffee shop designed a way that it should appeal the day’s customers as well as post-work customers.

A Coffee shop and bar businesses aren’t the only businesses that can be merged. There are many other businesses that can make a difference if you emerge them.

28. Gas station

Opening a gas station is among the small town business ideas that earn big profits. The competition is stiff, but still, the right location and good planning can help you build a successful enterprise.

If you’re thinking about starting this business, you should keep looking for a good location unless you find it. Preferably, the place that is near main roads, restaurants, and other small businesses.

Make sure to keep all the related products in your gas station, this will build your customer base gradually.

29. Handyman business

Being a skilled person in your work is an important component to run a successful business, doesn’t matter where you start your business. The same goes for a handyman business.

But there are other things you will need to learn as they are crucial for handyman business success too.

  • Learn to price and estimate the profit of a given project.
  • Manage time and money.
  • Create a variety of services packages in order to meet your client’s needs.
  • Bill for additional work done outside a project and expenses.

According to Entrepreneur Magazine, pricing for any project isn’t only about the cost of parts and labor. You should also take time travel and the project location into consideration while charging.

30. Restaurant

Every town, whether big or small will have their needs from a restaurant. The needs of a restaurant are even more when there is a special event, such as festivals, weddings, or other parties.

This makes the restaurant a business that thrives. Starting a restaurant is a challenging business, therefore, the people who are really passionate about it, are a good fit and such people should consider starting this business only.

Before you dive into it, do some market research and learning that will help you in keeping your business on top.

31. Bed and Breakfast

Did you ever entertain your guest in town? If yes, you might have wished that your town had a bed and breakfast. A single B&B can fill the need for a small town.

However, such businesses are more popular in tourist places. If you think your area receives a lot of tourists on a monthly basis, you can start a bed and breakfast.

This is a great business idea and might be a new thing in your place. B&B may require more rooms, unlike other small town businesses.

Therefore, if you have enough money to buy enough place or you already have, then B&B can be a profitable venture for you.

Related: Tourism and Hospitality Business Ideas

32. Specialty Health Food/Organic foods

Everyone wants healthy foods. The definition of healthy foods varies, but one trend includes organic foods which are proven beneficial for health and have scientific evidence.

People living in some villages may face difficulty to get fresh organic foods. Therefore, helping them will be helping yourself too.

According to an estimate, the global sales of healthy foods will reach $1 trillion by 2019. In the U.S alone, the sale generated $707 Billion in the year 2016.

Growth is expected in the future. Health awareness will turn more people into healthy foods, and thus a health foods store is a business you can start wherever you reside.

33. Flea market seller

A flea market is a multibillion-dollar business in the U.S. It attracts a good crowd during weekends. Therefore, it can be a good part-time or weekend’s business.

It doesn’t require a big space, however, if you want a big start, you can do that by buying or renting a big space.

Different types of merchandise that sell the most include books, antiques, electronics, kitchenware, clothing, toys, sports goods, arts, and tools.

This business has excellent growth potential and therefore, is a good long-term small town business opportunity.

34. Firewood seller

It is a profitable part-time business for the villages with access to a woodlot. But the business works in the areas where the gas hasn’t reached or where people love to use wood stoves during cold weather.

If you live in a place where you think is a need for firewood, the business may be a good option for you.

Before you start, you’ll have to know the work. Also, you should consider doing research, it will help you know different aspects of the business.

For example, what type of wood you should choose to sell, how to charge for a bundle and how to grow the business fast.

35. Dog Breeding Business

Running a dog breeding business can be a rewarding business if you have the patience and skills to develop your business.

It might feel easy, but it isn’t. It requires a lot of time, effort, and money. Moreover, you’ll need to provide veterinarian care to the dogs.

This business is good for those who love keeping dogs. If you’re a kind of person who loves a particular breed, you can start with that breed too.

In order to learn more about the business, you can check out the breeding associations, dog’s websites, or also can meet a dog breeder who is willing to teach you.

36. Photography business

It is among the small town business ideas that will have less or no competition at all. People love to make memories and enjoy especially on special occasions.

That’s why starting a photography business can be a great way to add more value to people’s life. There is a wide set of skills needed to do photography, but that can be learned easily.

Make sure you keep a well-designed business card for your business so that people can call you when they need your services at the wedding, parties, and birthday celebrations, etc.

37. Open a veterinary clinic

If you’re a veterinarian, you can start your own clinic in a village. You’ll need to cover the medical needs of different animals there.

Not only you, if you think there is a need for more persons, but you can also consider hiring staff to assist you.

You must be graduated from a veterinary school. You’ll need to obtain a veterinary license also. This business has an excellent chance of success if you start it in villages where people keep pets or own animals for a business.

38. Computer repairing service

Almost all homes have computers and laptops nowadays. Of course, not everyone has the skill to repair or upgrade their computers when they need to.

That makes the computer repair a good business to start in small towns. Not only the repairing work you’ll be doing, but you also will keep computer-related products.

For example, Keyboard, Mouse, headphones, speakers, CD rooms, USB’s, Data Cables, and LCD’s are some of the related products that are worth keeping.

In addition to this, computer software, games, and windows also have good demand.

39. Automotive repairs

Automotive repair is among the small town business ideas that require long hours of work, and therefore the business owners remain away from their families most of the time.

This business is fit for a person with a good physique. In a rural area, most business owners prefer to start automotive repairing as a self-proprietor.

The business requires skills that cannot be learned without practice. Therefore, if you do not know the work, you should become an apprentice first. Practice until you feel like you have learned automotive repair completely.

40. Retail pharmacy

Retail pharmacy is a business that thrives in every type of rural area, but starting can be a little difficult with so many laws.

Your previous experience, if you have any, can help you here. You’ll have to know the local, federal and state rules and regulations if you want to start a retail pharmacy.

What should you do? From where you can have a good start? Well! The first thing is the research about the industry.

If you get a good feeling about it, you can start further. Make sure you meet a few current pharmacists and get their ideas about the business.

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Javed Kamal

I am the founder of NamesFrog. Focused on startups, naming businesses and brands, and marketing. I am always learning and love to help.

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