25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024

In 2024, the landscape of entrepreneurship is brimming with opportunities, especially for those looking to make a mark without a hefty investment. For this reason, we rounded up 25 inexpensive small business ideas 2024 in this article.

From harnessing the power of the internet to tapping into the evergreen needs of communities, the opportunities are boundless. 

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024

Whether you’re passionate about eco-friendly initiatives, tech innovations, or personalized services, 2024 is the perfect time to start.

So, let’s get started on exploring some of the most promising and inexpensive small business ideas.

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas

1. Catering

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024-Catering

Catering is an excellent example of an inexpensive small business idea that leverages culinary skills and creativity.

Entrepreneurs can minimize overhead costs by operating from a home kitchen. You can focus on niche markets, such as vegan or gluten-free menus, and utilize social media for marketing. 

To set your business apart from the competitors, network with the local event planners and offer customized menu options.

Also, by gradually expanding the menu and services based on customer feedback, you can turn your passion for cooking into a thriving catering.

2. Food Truck

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Food Truck

Launching a food truck business is a fantastic, budget-friendly entrepreneurial venture for culinary enthusiasts.

The typical cost of starting a food truck business varies widely depending on several costs. These costs include the cost of the food truck, initial food supplies, kitchen equipment, permits, and licenses.

However, on average the startup cost of food truck business costs can range from $50,000 to $100,000. By carefully selecting locations with high foot traffic and leveraging social media for marketing, you can quickly start generating profits.

3. Event Planner

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Event Planner

Event planners have the unique opportunity to craft unforgettable experiences for both corporate and private clients. Their work ranges from conferences and workshops to weddings and birthday celebrations.

This business requires minimal initial investment- the cost to start can be as low as $2,000 to $5,000 This covers the basic operational necessities such as a website, business cards, software for planning and design, and initial marketing efforts.

4. Florist

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Florist

Starting a florist business is the next small business idea on our list that is inexpensive. The initial investment for launching a florist business can be relatively low, especially if you opt for a home-based setup or a minimalist storefront.

Depending on the scale and location, you might be able to start your florist business with an investment of around $10,000 to $15,000.

5. Lawn Care Or Landscaping Business

Lawn Care Or Landscaping Business

This is a cost-effective business for those who have a passion for outdoor work and a green thumb. 

The initial investment for launching a lawn care or landscaping business can be relatively low, primarily covering equipment like lawnmowers, trimmers, and other gardening tools.

Depending on whether you buy new or used equipment, you might be able to start your business with an investment of around $5,000 to $10,000

6. Dropshipping Business

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Dropshipping Business

Dropshipping is a popular and cost-efficient small business model that allows you to sell products directly to customers without actually stocking the items. 

When a customer places an order, the product is shipped directly from the supplier to the customer, eliminating the need for you to manage inventory or handle shipping logistics.

Overall, the initial investment for launching a dropshipping business can be as low as $100 to $500, mainly depending on the cost of website setup and marketing efforts.

7. House Cleaning Services

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- House Cleaning Services

This type of service is always in demand, as busy homeowners and renters seek assistance in keeping their living spaces clean and tidy. 

The beauty of starting a house cleaning business lies in its simplicity and the minimal initial investment required. 

The start-up costs can be surprisingly low, often ranging between $500 to $1,000, primarily depending on the quality and quantity of cleaning supplies you opt for and your marketing approach. 

8. Handyman Business

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Handyman Business

Handyman business is a type of venture that appeals to individuals who are skilled in home repairs, maintenance work, and renovations.

Unlike many other businesses, the initial costs are relatively low because the primary investments are tools and transportation. 

Generally, the cost of starting a handyman business can range from as low as $2,000 to $5,000, depending on the tools you already own, the type of insurance you opt for, and the marketing approach you decide to take. 

9. Car Detailing Specialist

Car Detailing Specialist

Becoming a car detailing specialist involves providing thorough cleaning, restoration, and finishing services for vehicles, aiming to achieve high-quality cleanliness and polish.

The beauty of starting a car detailing business lies in its flexibility; you can begin offering services right from your home garage or provide mobile services, further reducing initial costs. 

The startup costs for a car detailing business can be quite manageable, typically ranging between $2,000 and $10,000, depending on the scale and whether you choose a mobile or stationary setup.

10. Home Inspector

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Home Inspector

Starting a career as a Home Inspector is a fantastic and cost-effective small business idea for those with a knack for detail and a solid understanding of residential construction and building codes.

This role involves evaluating the condition of homes, identifying any issues or defects, and providing clients with detailed reports.

Initial investments primarily include training and certification costs, reliable transportation, and professional-grade inspection tools.

The startup costs can range from approximately $3,000 to $5,000, making it an accessible venture for those passionate about real estate and helping others make informed decisions about their future homes.

11. Tutor

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Tutor

This is an economical small business idea, particularly for those with expertise in specific subjects or skills and a passion for teaching. 

Whether you choose to conduct sessions online or in person, the initial investment can be as low as $500 to $1,000. This affordability, combined with the flexibility of setting your schedule and rates, makes tutoring a lucrative and fulfilling venture.

12. Personal Trainer Or Fitness Instructor

Gym Owner

This field allows for flexibility in terms of location, clientele, and specialization, making it a highly adaptable business model. 

However, to start, you’ll need to get certain certifications such as the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) or the American Council on Exercise (ACE).

The cost of certification can range from $400 to $1,000, depending on the program and materials required. Additionally, obtaining liability insurance, which can cost around $100 to $400 annually, is crucial to protect your business. 

13. Daycare Provider

25 Inexpensive Small Business Ideas 2024- Daycare Provider

If you are someone passionate and loves kids, then a full-fledged daycare center can be a solid small business idea. This business can also be started from home.

Initial expenses primarily include licensing and insurance fees, which can vary by location but typically range from $500 to $1,500.

It also involves the costs for childproofing and purchasing necessary supplies and toys, which might add another $1,000 to $2,000 to the startup costs.

14. Senior Care Provider

Senior Care Provider

This venture can often be initiated with minimal upfront investment, particularly if the services are offered within clients’ homes, eliminating the need for a physical facility.

Initial expenses revolve around obtaining certifications or training, which vary by location alongside purchasing basic supplies. 

The cost to kickstart this business can often be kept under $1,000, depending on the specific requirements and scale at which an entrepreneur aims to commence operations.

15. Self-Storage Business

Self-Storage Business

Embarking on a self-storage business can be a lucrative venture with relatively low barriers to entry.

This venture taps into the demand for storage solutions, driven by moving, or the simple need for extra space among consumers and businesses. 

One of the appealing aspects of starting a self-storage business is its scalability. Entrepreneurs can begin with a modest number of units and expand as demand and resources increase. 

Typically, starting a self-storage business might require an initial investment ranging from $25,000 to $50,000 if leasing property. However, these costs can escalate into the millions for purchasing land and constructing new units. 

16. Sell Clothes Online

Sell Clothes Online

Selling clothes online is a business model that allows for significant creativity, from curating a collection of vintage finds to designing and selling your own creations. 

The cost to start selling clothes online can be minimal, especially if you utilize platforms like Etsy or eBay.

If you’re looking to establish a more branded presence, set up a website through Shopify or WordPress with e-commerce capabilities.

The initial costs of this business range from $100 to $2,000 to cover web hosting, domain registration, and basic marketing efforts. 

17. Real Estate Business

Real Estate Business

Starting a real estate business revolves around facilitating the buying, selling, and renting of properties.

The costs involve obtaining a real estate license, which varies by state but generally ranges from $500 to $1,200, and setting up a basic home office. 

With the ability to leverage online platforms, the initial marketing and operational costs can be kept low, making it possible to launch a real estate business for under $2,000.

18. Digital Marketing Services

Digital Marketing Services

This business model capitalizes on

  • Helping other businesses increase their online presence
  • Improve their search engine rankings,
  • Engage more effectively with their customers through social media,
  • Email marketing, and
  • Content creation. 

Essential expenses might include a reliable computer, internet service, and subscription to various digital marketing tools and software. The cost to start this business range from $500 to $5,000, making it an accessible venture for many aspiring entrepreneurs.

19. Woodworking Or Furniture Building

Woodworking Or Furniture Building

This venture taps into the growing demand for unique, handcrafted furniture and home decor, distinguishing itself from mass-produced items.

Starting a woodworking business can be relatively inexpensive, especially if you already possess some basic tools and have a space that can serve as a workshop. 

The starting costs can range from $1,000 -$5,000 or more for those needing to purchase more comprehensive equipment. 

20. Ice Cream Shop

Ice Cream Shop

Ice cream shops have the allure of universal appeal, catering to customers of all ages. This, in turn, makes it a delightful small business idea.

The main costs involve securing a location, purchasing ice cream-making and storage equipment, and obtaining the necessary permits and licenses.

Depending on the size and location, the start-up cost for an ice cream shop can range from $20,000 to $50,000 or more.

21. Pet Grooming

Pet Grooming

Pet grooming emerges as a compelling and inexpensive small business idea, especially for animal lovers.

This venture can begin right from a home-based setup, reducing the need for a costly storefront. Services can range from basic washing and trimming to styling for different types of pets, primarily dogs and cats.

Typically, the start-up cost for a pet grooming business can be quite manageable, ranging from $2,000 to $5,000.

22. Pressure Washing Business

Pressure Washing Business

This business model appeals to those seeking to tap into the cleaning and maintenance market, offering services that rejuvenate:

  • Residential and commercial exteriors
  • driveways
  • decks and
  • vehicles

The start-up cost for a pressure washing business ranges from $3,000 to $10,000, depending on the equipment’s quality.

23. Vending Business

Vending Business

The vending business offers flexibility in terms of hours and location, making it an attractive option for those looking to start small.

The cost of starting this business highly varies based on the types and numbers of vending machines you decide to deploy. You can also start this business to make passive income to quit your job.

Generally, the cost to start can range from as low as $1,500 to $3,000 per machine.

24. Airbnb Host

Airbnb Host

The cost to start this business largely depends on whether you already own a space you intend to list or if you will be acquiring or renting a property for this purpose. 

If you’re converting an existing space, your initial investment could be minimal. For those purchasing or renting a property specifically to host, costs will be significantly higher.

25. Laundry Service

Laundry Service

tSarting a laundry service is an appealing small business idea for entrepreneurs looking for a low-cost entry into the service industry.

The initial investment required to kickstart a laundry service can be relatively modest, particularly if operations begin on a small scale.

The cost to start this business primarily revolves around acquiring commercial-grade washing and drying machines. This could range from $20,000 to $100,000, depending on the brand, capacity, and number of machines. 


These 25 inexpensive small business ideas 2024 stand out as beacons for aspiring business owners aiming to carve out their success stories in the ever-evolving world of commerce.

However, before selecting your ideal small business, make sure to research it thoroughly. Also ensure that you possess the adequate amount of capital to start the business.


How important is technology for small businesses?

Technology is crucial for small businesses, enabling them to operate efficiently, reach a wider audience, and compete in the market. Investing in the right technology tools can help streamline operations, improve customer experiences, and foster growth.

Can a small business start without any investment?

Starting a business without any investment is challenging but possible, especially in the service sector.

Utilizing existing skills and offering services such as consulting, tutoring, or freelance content creation can minimize startup costs. Building a strong online presence and network can also help attract initial clients without significant investment.

What are the key factors for success in starting a small business?

Some of the key factors for success in starting a small business are as follows: understanding market needs and trends and identifying and focusing on a niche market. It also includes delivering quality products or services, excellent customer service and engagement, and flexibility and adaptability to change.

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