23 Hottest Small Scale Online Business Ideas

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With increasing dissatisfaction in the Corporate World, more and more people are choosing to start a small-scale online business on their own. In several countries including the United States, India, Singapore, HongKong, Israel, and more, a very robust and effective ecosystem has spun around to support such small-scale online business ideas.

Not limiting the support from respective Government Organisations, a plethora of Startup Incubators run by successful entrepreneurs are providing deep insights and real-time assistance to bring such small scale business to a successful stage. As long as you have an idea and the will to execute it, you will find unlimited help and support from people, organizations, and the Government.

Startup Ecosystems

Check out the Top 10 Largest Startup Ecosystem in the US. The United States Government has a very mature Small Business Support program that also offers Grants and Loans. The Department of Ministry of Commerce and Industry of India has started the StartupIndia Initiative that provides various Tax reliefs and subsidies to Startups in India. At the time of publishing this article, 1621 Startup applications have been received, 592 Startups have been recognized, and 146 Startups are eligible for tax benefits.

As per StartupIndia Website, the eligibility criteria is

Startup means an entity, incorporated or registered in India:

  • Not prior to five years,
  • With annual turnover not exceeding INR 25 crore in any preceding financial year, and
  • Working towards innovation, development, deployment or commercialisations of new products, processes or services driven by technology or intellectual property

Founder Games runs an annual contest for Startups in Eastern Europe, and the winners get a Seed Funding of Euros 200K.

Check out some of the most innovative startups from Israel which could also be a good source for inspiration.



Small scale businesses are the ones that have few employees or small annual revenue and owned privately by corporations, partnerships, or single trader. The number of employees ranges from ten to three hundred people maximum.

An entrepreneur is someone who jumps off the cliff and builds a plane on their way down. Click To Tweet
Classification of small scale businesses is done by calculating their annual revenues, sales, profits and the number of employees.

Starting a business always depends on the capital. People having more capital start big businesses, and sometimes it comes in their bloodline i.e. belonging to a business family. But what about others who don’t have the big capital? For them, online or small scale business is a smart option.

Any individual can start their own business if they have creative ideas. What’s needed is the willpower, skill, and knowledge, so that it can be utilized efficiently. The greatest success a person can achieve in these businesses is to start from a low budget and then expanding it to millions.

From last few years, it seems like people have shown interest in the small-scale business sector, started their own business and have reached heights. It is profitable because people are doing this kind of business online and even from their homes, all they need is a high-speed internet to connect with people and the perfect resources. So, let’s put a glance on some of the small scale online businesses or home based businesses for startups. These are some of the most innovative and best business ideas to make money, and some of these are also home based business ideas with low startup costs.

Who sells products cheaper – a manufacturer or a distributor? The storehouse guard.

Top 23 Small Scale Online Business Ideas


TRANSCRIPTION: Anyone having good listening and typing skills can always start this business. The person should have a good ear for dictation. If a person has a computer with high-speed internet, then you can work as a freelancer or open up a website and to connect with the people through networks and gain referrals. You can use oTranscribe which is a free tool to manage all your transcription services.

GADGETS RECYCLING: Everyone is very concerned about the environment. So, recycling the available gadgets is a very innovative work. It depends on the person whether wants to collect the items of their own or submitted by the customers. Along with this, the person can also provide service for backing up of information from their old phones, tablets, laptops, etc. Read how these 2 Indian Startups will Pay Cash for your Trash.

INTERIOR DESIGNER: Many women are seen starting this business. If a person has lots of creative ideas for design and décor, then it can prove profitable. For the growth of the business, a person’s bachelor’s degree in designing is always a good factor, but it’s not mandatory. A website showing the individual’s works and designs is always a welcoming factor for starters, and that can start right from the person’s home. Get inspiration from Furdo, Livspace, or check out these top 7 Indian startups in Interior Design.

TRANSLATOR: A person who is multilingual can always choose for this business. Big organizations working with foreign partners always look for a translator, to keep their documents in order. So, offering an individual’s linguistic skills to these organizations can help a lot in making money. You can start taking translation projects from sites like Upwork and Freelancer.

SELLING HANDMADE GOODS: Any individual who is good in knitting, jewelry design, pottery making, or creating small crafts can sell their goods online provided having a good and a running website and keeping in mind the shipping costs and servicing areas. You can start selling your wares at online marketplaces like eBay, Amazon, Flipkart, SnapDeal, and ShopClues.

GRAPHIC/WEB DESIGNER: If an individual has the proper graphic or web designing skills, they can always start this business. People running small scale business always look for people who can design their website in an attractive way. So, starting with their websites, they can help others businesses to expand by creating interesting websites. You can start taking freelance projects from PeoplePerHour and Fiverr.

A climber fell off a cliff, and as he tumbled down, he caught hold of a small branch

“Help! Is there anybody up there?” he shouted.

A majestic voice boomed through the gorge:

“I will help you, my son, but first you must have faith in me.”

“Yes, yes, I trust you!” cried the man.

“Let go of the branch,” boomed the voice.

There was a long pause, and the man shouted up again, “Is there anybody ELSE up there?”

ONLINE COURSE INSTRUCTOR: A person having the passion for impacting knowledge can always become a good instructor for courses. Helping individuals by offering them online classes in the subjects matter can make a person good online instructor. You can become an Instructor on very popular MOOC platforms like Udemy, or check more of its alternatives.

SOFTWARE TRAINER: This business has an excellent market in the IT industry. If an individual has a good experience in software development, they can start their own business by becoming a software trainer. The person can always make their software skills, knowledge about the software and experience in their own business. Scheduling up small workshops and private sessions can also help to expand their business. You can attract potential customers for your workshops by registering it on Event Marketing Websites like EventBrite, MeraEvents, EventSmart, BuzzmyEvent, and more.

BABYSITTING: working parents always worry for their babies and kids and to find a good nanny for them is a difficult job. So, who doesn’t like babies, sometimes it’s difficult to control kids, but a business can be started out of this. If a person knows to handle a child with care, they can always babysit or hire more people like them for babysitting. Get inspiration from startups like Chime, SitterFriends and more.

PET CARE: Individuals who love animals can start a pet care service. Pet owners always want to hand over their pets to take care, to someone they know, so that they can go comfortably without any tensions for their pets. By opening a website or spreading the word among friends can always be helpful in this business. Check out some of the popular pet care startups.

MOBILE APPLICATION DEVELOPER: Each and every person in this world uses cell phones and uses various mobile apps. Persons good with platforms like iOS, Android, etc. can make it as a business. The individual can help small companies to make their mobile application that doesn’t have the budget to hire an expensive firm. This service can also be provided as a freelance app developer. Find freelance jobs from freelancing websites already mentioned above.

BILLING SERVICE: There are many companies who terminate employees during the recession period. And hiring new ones is surely not an option; work like billing service from home gives them a lot of relief. Billing services include all the work of an assistant from updating invoices to bookkeeping, etc. Signup for Remote Worker Job portals like WeWorkRemotely, Remote, RemoteOK, NoDesk, and more.

EVENT PLANNER: People who love to arrange parties or significant events can always opt for this work. To make an event successful, the organizer wants a good event planner. So if a person has the perfect skills, they can show off their skills in this field. Learn how to start an event planning service.

MOBILE REPAIR SERVICES: Smartphones have become an essential part of our daily life and servicing costs are very high when it gets damaged. So, this can also be a profitable business if an individual knows how to fix broken screens, updating mobile software, downloading songs and videos, etc. an individual can offer this service by opening up an online portal. The demands for fixing smartphones will always be high even with the advancement of technology. Get inspired by some very creative online services like JustLikeNew and BigFix.

ONLINE STORE: A website and an e-commerce store will always help in this business. An individual can also sell products from the local suppliers if needed since it is not mandatory to sell goods from large retail shops. You can take advantage of easy online subscription from some very established players of eCommerce platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce, KartRocket, and more.

MASSAGE THERAPIST: To start this business an individual will always require a proper license and training. The business can be done by inviting clients to their homes or making house calls for massage therapy. You can even enlist at online marketplaces like UrbanPro.

SEO EXPERTS: Any projects that had to do with SEO are in great demand now and more, if dealing with blogs and websites. But yes, a person had to know everything about SEO and got to hire the best SEO experts if starting a business of their own.

LUNCH BOX SERVICE: This is the service to provide lunch boxes to people working in offices, or students staying in hostels. The only thing to be done is to hire people who cook good food and; people for collecting lunch boxes from an area and delivering it to the respective people. Get inspiration from TinMen and TheLunchBox.

LAUNDRY SERVICES: The laundry service can be started on a minimum budget, say 600 to 700 dollars. To start this business, buy a washing machine and hire people for doing laundry. Advertising can help in reaching out to more customers. Check out Pick My Laundry and 9 more startups offering laundry services.

DESKTOP PUBLISHING: This idea is very profitable if a person has the knowledge of Adobe Photoshop. If clients are more then, professional can also be hired.

EBOOK WRITING AND PODCASTING: This one is obvious if a person loves writing and planning to publish a book and no publishers to publish. So, writing an eBook is always better and publishing online can help make money too. The only thing to do is to set a price and then keep it selling online.

DEALERS AND DISTRIBUTORS: It is the distributors who are known to sell directly to dealers, and then the dealers sell it to the consumers. As a distributor, it is required to buy products from a company and sell it to the dealers. The things needed for doing this business is having a warehouse plus trucks for transportation to receive as well as deliver.

YOUTUBE VIDEO MAKING: Making video is not as easy as it is to watch. But since nothing is impossible, any individual can make their videos and upload it. But before that, the person has to join the YouTube Partner program. More the number of views more money a person will earn.

Pessimist: Oh, this can’t get any worse!
Optimist: Yes, it can!

If you have set up your mind to start a business and you are passionate about it, nothing is impossible. The above mentioned are some of the ideas that are trending these days. A business can be made out of anything provided that you have the skills for the job. Starting a business and seeing it through depends on how much you are serious and dedicated towards your goals and ambition. During troubled time, if you ever feel like shutting down your business, always remember why you quit your job. That will drive you further.

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Palash Bagchi

Constant Innovator, fanatic marketeer, value creator, Growth Hacker. Making a positive impact on society with better technology.


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