Top 15 Small Business Ideas in India for Beginners To Start in 2021

So you recently finished your study and looking for a small business idea to start with your friends? The great news is that the business world is open for you. Nowadays it has become very easy to start your own business with all the free and easily available information on the internet. Small Business ideas are becoming so popular among young people because of their simplicity and flexibility. There are thousands of small businesses which can be started by anyone at any place.

In this article, I have mentioned the top 15 small business ideas in India for beginners to start in 2021 where you can build a successful career as well as create multiple sources of income with your limited efforts and time. Apart from some technical know-how, these business ideas do not require any huge investment. Start your small business with a mindset to achieve success in the long run.

Top 15 Small Business Ideas in India For Beginners & Startups

1. Blogging (Start an Online Business Blog)

Blogging is the best-suited business for any entrepreneur who wishes to start his business with a low investment. You can start your own blog on any topic you are an expert in. It can be anything from fashion, travel, food, and cooking, etc. All you need is a wordpress or blogger website and some content ideas, to begin with.

For example, if you love reading books and want to share your experiences about them then create a website about books where visitors will get tips on how to pick up good books for themselves among the various options available in the market. There are several other topics as well where you can start your own blog.

According to a study by Technorati, the top 100 blogs are earning an income of around $1836 per month on average. Not only that, with the growth of internet users and the ever-increasing popularity of online reading, blogging is definitely one of the best small business ideas in India to make money.

Business Model: Monetize it through ads, affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, or information products like eBooks and videos. It is also possible to charge for articles if you don’t have enough content to share.

2. Drop-Shipping

Dropshipping is a simple business model where the seller does not keep the stock of products but directly receives an order from customers and passes it on to a wholesaler who delivers it to the customer. This business model is especially helpful for entrepreneurs who do not have enough capital to keep their own inventory or do not want to deal with huge logistics issues of handling their own inventory and delivering goods at customers’ places.

This business model is suitable for all types of small businesses where you can earn commission by selling other brands’ products in your online store. But remember, this is a complex business model and the main success factor lies in sourcing a good wholesaler who has trustable brand products with him.

Business Model: Create an online store on any shopping platform (e.g. Shopify) and create different product pages to list different brands’ product links that are available on your dropshipping site at a wholesale price along with their description and specifications. When customers place an order, pass it on to your wholesaler and get paid a commission for each sale you make.

3. Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is one of the most effective ways to earn money online where you can advertise someone else’s product or service on your website or blog and get a certain percentage of profit for each sale made through your site. This model works well especially in the case of selling digital products like eBooks, online courses, etc., because they do not require any logistics and delivery process. The best part about affiliate marketing is that if someone buys something from your affiliate link, you earn the commission on it even if you don’t know that person.

Some of the top affiliate networks include Myntra affiliate, Amazon Associates, ClickBank, Shareasale, Skimlinks, and many more. You can either sell your own product or promote someone else’s through your site or blog and generate a healthy income online. Start with something you are passionate about and make money by promoting it online to earn passive income for life.

Business Model: Monetize it through Google Adsense or affiliate marketing programs like Amazon Associates, ShareASale, etc. You can also use affiliate marketing to sell your own product.

4. Running an E-Commerce Store

If you are an entrepreneur with good business acumen, E-commerce is a good small business idea for you. Starting an online store for selling products/services requires expertise in e-commerce technologies, marketing, and of course planning. But if you possess these qualities then starting an online store would be the easiest way to start your own business.

In India, Flipkart has become a household name after their recent acquisition by Walmart Inc. Now there are several other E-Commerce sites like Snapdeal, Shopclues, etc where one can sell his products with ease and convenience to the users.

Business Model: Depending on the product category, one can choose from different business models like C2C (Consumer To Consumer), B2C (Business to Consumer), or B2B (Business to Business). It is advisable that you first study the market properly and understand it well before starting your own e-commerce store.

5. Freelancing

Freelancing is an ideal business idea in India that works best if you have good communication skills, are a fast learner, and can work on your own time at any place with just your laptop. There are numerous online platforms like and Fiverr where you can post up a project that suits your skill-set and experience.

As a matter of fact, it is one of the fastest-growing fields in India because of the good opportunities it provides to youth who can work from their own place and provide the desired output within the given deadline. In most cases, you are paid on a per-project basis but you also have a chance to create long-term relationships with your clients for repeated business.

Business Model: Monetize your skills and experience through freelance projects by charging a good amount per hour or per project basis. It’s important to note that your clients can ask for unlimited revisions so make sure you are flexible with your pricing.

6. Event Organiser

Event organizing is one of the best small business ideas in India which requires comparatively less time and money investment. You can organize events like conferences, seminars, corporate parties, and marriages. As a matter of fact, it is one of the easiest ways to make money on your own.

You can also choose this business idea to have a decent side income while being employed. The best part about event organizing is that you will get to meet a lot of people and expand your network. To manage and coordinate various aspects of the event, you need to have some work experience in it, though it’s not essential.

Business Model: It’s possible to earn money from sponsorships and paid registrations as well as by charging a fixed amount for conducting an event on behalf of clients. It is also possible to hire out the place where you are organizing events like a venue.

7. Article Writing

Do you love writing articles on various topics? Well, if yes then becoming a freelance writer is your best business idea in India. There are several websites available that can easily be monetized through AdSense and affiliate marketing. The top writers on these websites earn around $200 per article on average.

You don’t need to have any previous experience or qualification for starting as a freelance writer, but it’s always better to keep learning and writing in your spare time before launching a full-time career as a writer. It’s also good to develop basic skills like SEO writing, rewriting, article spinning, etc. because they will help you earn a higher income and will help you to differentiate from the other writers.

Business Model: Monetize it through ads, affiliate marketing, sponsored posts, or information products like eBooks and videos. It is also possible to charge for articles if you don’t have enough content to share.

8. Fashion Designing & Styling

Fashion designing has become a popular choice for most students and young people looking for a small business idea in India because of its flexibility, high profit margins, and low investment requirement. Whether you want to design new dresses or love styling, it is a viable option for you.

You can easily rent a shop and begin your own business by selling dresses that you can design or style yourself. If you have enough skills and knowledge in this field, then the best way to start your business is to make your own designs first, so that others cannot copy them easily. Once you make a decent profit out of it, then you can invest in other sources of income like affiliate marketing, blogging, etc.

Business Model: You have the option to rent space from someone else and sell dresses on a commission basis or even set up an e-commerce website for selling your own designed dresses.

9. Food Delivery Business

India is one of the major hubs for delivery services like Swiggy, Foodpanda, and Zomato among others. If you want to start a small business and have some cooking skills, then a food delivery service will be the best startup idea for you.

You can deliver food from your home or choose an online food ordering portal as your base. Depending on your menu, a good meal should consist of 1-2 dishes which gives you enough options to cater to multiple tastes in different zones in India (North Indian Food vs South Indian Food). This way there is no need to start separate food delivery services in each state.

Business Model: You can start with a minimum investment of around Rs.5,000 to start the food delivery business and make it profitable within 3-4 months. Set your own rates for different dishes and then go ahead with the orders on your portal of choice or website. You can also approach restaurants to deliver their meals through online food ordering platforms which will make things easier for you as you don’t have to deal with customers personally and will be just doing deliveries on their behalf.

10. Buy & Sell Used Mobile Phones

India is the second-largest mobile market in the world with more than a billion users. Moreover, there are more than 18 million mobile phones sold in India every month. This means one can definitely make a good profit by buying and selling used mobiles at an affordable price to reduce the number of mobile phone junk out there.

Most of these pre-owned smartphones end up on sites like OLX, Quikr, or eBay but you can grab them from flea markets as well. The best part about this business is that you don’t have to buy any inventory initially. You can buy the mobiles when you get a good deal and pay later to avoid any hassle.

To start your own used mobile phone business, all you need is a website/platform from where customers can contact you and give them directions to the place where they can pick up their desired product.

Business Model: Free (Just buy whatever phones are available in the market)

11. Private Tuition Center

Every year, thousands of students pass out of school and go on to further their studies. Some enroll for professional courses while others want to take up bachelor’s or master’s degrees. Once you are through with your education, you will definitely need some extra money to meet the expenses of your daily needs, right? This is where private tuition centers come into the picture.

In a country like India, where more than 50% of the total population lives below the poverty line, getting a job in reputed companies is only a distant dream for most people because they don’t have the required educational qualifications. If you are good at your subject, you can start a private tuition center in your locality and teach students the things that they are not able to understand in schools.

You can either conduct classes on weekdays after school hours or just share notes online for people who cannot attend regular classes due to some reason. This way, you will be able to help students learn new topics as well as earn a decent amount of money through this business idea.

Business Model: Charging per hour or month is the most common model followed by teachers nowadays. You can also charge a flat fee for the entire course.

12. Digital Marketing Consultancy

Digital marketing has emerged as one of the most popular business ideas for startup entrepreneurs. For you to start your digital marketing consultancy business, you need to have a good understanding of the internet and its best practices. It is also necessary that you are aware of various tools such as social media marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) ads, email marketing, etc. which can be used to promote a brand online effectively without investing much money on it.

If you feel confident about your skills and want to leverage them then this is the right business model for you. As a digital marketing consultant, you can start your own business online or make money through a freelance website.

Business Model: You can charge the client based on the project size and work done on it, monthly fee, or percentage of the project cost as per your agreement with the client. It is also possible to monetize it by selling digital products like eBooks and video tutorials which will help in generating high profits as compared to other models.

13. Graphics Designer

Have you been a creative person since childhood? Do you love to draw and design things? If yes, then graphics designing is one of the best small business ideas in India for people who are interested in art. There are hundreds of different designs available in the market which needs someone like you to make them live. Graphic designing can be done on anything starting from logo design, banner ads, T-shirt designing, and web designing, etc. It is an easy way to earn good money if done correctly with the help of creativity and expertise.

Business Model: Monetize it through selling your designs as well as affiliate programs or product promotion.

14. Web Development

Have you always been interested in programming and love to learn new things? Web development is one of the best small business ideas which can be started with very less investment. One can also start their own website development services for others where they will build websites for businesses at affordable prices. The sky is the limit for web developers if they know how to code properly and design creatively.

Business Model: Create your own website and charge customers on a monthly or hourly basis, or set up your own agency or freelancer marketplace like Rent a Coder, Freelancer, etc. which will help you to earn a good income.

15. Cake Making Business

Cake making is one of the most creative and profitable small business ideas in India for women entrepreneurs who love to bake. Whether it’s a birthday, anniversary, or any other special occasion, you can turn it into an opportunity by offering your services in cake making and decorating for people who are planning to celebrate it at home with their friends and family members. So if you have some free time at home then why not pick up this hobby and start your own cake business? You can pick up something easy like chocolate chip cookies or vanilla cupcakes and make a killing in it.

Business Model: Offer your services by visiting the homes of customers, delivering or accepting online orders for anyone who is planning to celebrate their special occasion. One can also start an online portal that provides the services like designing personalized cakes for customers based on their choice. You can also try your hand at the wholesale cake business where you will be selling handmade cakes in bulk to bakeries, hotels, and corporate houses, etc.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. How can I start my own business without any investment?

A. Most of the above-mentioned small business ideas are totally free or require only a small investment to start. Don’t be confused, this doesn’t mean that you have to suffer in your business life. In the beginning, yes, you might not be able to earn a lot of money. However, if you follow the right strategy and put in your hard work then it will definitely pay off after a few years.

Q. I want to start my own business but don’t know where to begin?

A. That is totally fine as starting a new business or entrepreneurship can be quite overwhelming at times because of various issues like fear of failure or high cost of failure. But don’t worry, there are thousands of entrepreneurs who are already running a successful business and sharing their experience and lessons with you. That’s why we have written a detailed post on how to start your own business in India where you can find answers to all your questions.

Q. Which is the best small business idea for me?

A. You can start with any of the above-mentioned businesses but always keep an eye on what you are good at, or which topic has more interest from you because that will help in generating results faster than other business ideas. Even if you don’t start the business right now, it is important to keep yourself updated with the latest trends in entrepreneurship or business as it will help you think of a better idea when needed.


The above list of top 15 small business ideas in India for beginners to start in 2021 is not a lottery. With the right guidance and mentorship, anyone can succeed.

As there are thousands of new businesses launched every year, it’s hard to compete with others without having a proper plan for your start-up. So choose wisely which business idea is the best for you and start working on it.

I hope you found this article useful. Feel free to share your views in the comment section below.

Leave a Comment