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10 Top Business Ideas You Can Start in India for 2021

Many people are starting to develop creative, cheap and highly profitable businesses in the rise of Indian unemployment, which went from 8.75% to 23.5 between April and March 2020 when Covid first hit

  • Unemployment in India went from 8.75% to 23.5 between April and March 2020 when Covid first strongly hit the country. Many people are starting to develop creative business ideas
  • McKinsey forecasts that the Indian clothing and fashion industry will be worth US$59.3 billion by 2022
  • Opening a sustainable food company is a solid idea in India, where vegan substitutes are not readily available. Thehindu estimates that India has 500 million vegetarians
  • Reports suggest that celebrity bloggers make closer to between $30,000 and $20,000, non-celebrity top bloggers between $10,000 and $5000, and average bloggers $1000 to $500
  • There are already Mumbai meal kit services such as Chef’s Basket, Getfresh, or Burgandy Box who sell from between 100 to 200 rupees for 1 or 2 person meal kits

The ongoing Covid-19 pandemic has put thousands out of jobs. According to Statistic unemployment in India went from 8.75% to 23.5 between April and March 2020 when Covid first strongly hit the country. Many people are starting to develop creative business ideas that are cheap and can be set up from anywhere, including their own homes. One of the most essential attributes of starting your own business is to have passion and drive. If you have these characters, there is an excellent chance that your business will flourish. Here are 10 top business ideas you can start that many people have successfully launched during Covid-19

  1. 1. Meal Service from your home

Almost everyone prefers a nice, home-cooked meal over take-out food. If you enjoy cooking, starting a catering service or lunch box services is a great idea. Food ingredients are cheap, so too are paper or plastic delivery boxes, and you can even cook within your own home. Upscaling the business to serve more customers will be the highest costs you face.

2. Opening a thrift store

Nowadays, more people are buying second-hand clothes because they are cheaper. Starting your own thrift store can be very profitable, especially if you can get quality vintage clothes kept in good condition. Use Instagram and Facebook to market your clothes to a wider reach of customers. To save costs, some stores operate solely online without a physical location such as Cooper Boom Vintage, Bombay Closet Cleanse or Lust Thrift.

3. Customised accessories and clothes

If you are creative, enjoy stitching and making resin art, you can start selling your creations. Use your hobby as a way to earn money. The demand for Indian accessories is enormous, especially in international markets. This demand is even greater for clothing. McKinsey forecasts that the Indian clothing and fashion industry will be worth US$59.3 billion by 2022. The current total market for Indian apparel is roughly 100 million, with 20 million being students and 40 million employees mostly middle class. Capture a slice of this market by creating your own customised clothing and accessories store.

4. Sustainable food production

There has been a substantial rise in awareness about unsustainable food industry practices, creating demand for sustainable and eco-friendly food products. Opening a sustainable food company is a solid idea in India, where vegan substitutes are not readily available. Thehindu estimates that India has 500 million vegetarians, which is almost more than the total number of vegetarians in the entire world put together. You could sell mock meat, vegan cheese, plant-based milk, and a host of other vegan products.

5. Waste management

Like many developing nations, many Indian cities and regions do not have robust waste management facilities. There is a waste management crises in India with waste being generated every single day, and piling up in landfills. The government and Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) like the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation offer entrepreneurs million dollar grants for coming up with solutions that use smart ways to deal with this crucial problem. Starting a composting business could be very profitable. 

6. Consultancy firm

The rise in unemployment in India is making more professional workers turn to freelance. You can set up a consultancy firm that will connect these freelancers to different companies for work both in India and internationally. Many foreign companies, in particular, the USA and UK, outsource their back-office operations to India. According to BackOfficePro 60% of this was related to work in the IT industry. Your consultancy could link professional workers to these jobs for a cut of their pay. With enough workers on short to long-term employment contracts, your business could make a lot of money.  

7. Blogging

This is one of the biggest rising platforms for people in today’s world. Social media plays a huge role in today’s society, and most people are taking advantage of that. Full-time bloggers earn thousands of rupees writing their own posts, or guest posting and writing for other people and businesses. Amit Nagpal, President and C-Founders of the Bloggers Alliance in an interview with the IndiaTimes stated that top Indian world-renown bloggers can earn as much as $60,000 per month. Reports suggest that celebrity bloggers make closer to between $30,000 and $20,000, non-celebrity top bloggers between $10,000 and $5000, and average bloggers $1000 to $500.This is a lot of money, costs are low, and setup is fast as it usually requires a hosting website and blogging platform like WordPress

8. Garden nursery

The word “organic food” is popular nowadays as people are becoming more and more conscious of what they eat. More people are growing their own food. Setting up a nursery or a company that can provide people with seeds and other gardening equipment or tips is a great idea, particularly in densely populated cities or urban areas. Apart from the monsoon and rainy season, India generally has a warm and tropical climate most of the year-round that is perfect for growing organic food. A garden nursery can also be expanded to grow plants and flowers which your business can sell to new customers. So there is room for upscaling and reaching different customers. 

9. DIY meal kits

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, DIY food kits were not a very popular business. However, the market was still growing mostly in Western countries. Forbes estimated the US market made sales worth up to $2.6 billion in 2017 and $3.1 billion by 2018. The pandemic has meant that many countries went into lockdown and many restaurants and food venues temporarily shut. This pushed demand for DIY meal kits to an all-time high as many people wanted their favourite restaurant tasting meals to eat at home.

DIT meal kits are the new food industry trend, which will make the global meal kit delivery service worth $19.92 billion by 2027. If you’re a good cook or can get a chef to prepare a food kit with all the necessary pre-measured ingredients, you can sell it to people to cook their own style meals. Be an early adopter and begin selling DIY meal kits in the food industry now. There are already Mumbai meal kit services such as Chef’s Basket, Getfresh, or Burgandy Box who sell from between 100 to 200 rupees for 1 or 2 person meal kits.   

10. Handicraft making

Going back to the basics, India is known for its handicraft works. People from other countries will go crazy for unique handmade goods. If you can transport these goods to an international market, it will be very profitable. Setting up this type of business depends on the size of the initial investment, availability of handicraft materials, quality of the designs, and tools for creating the handicraft. Good quality handicrafts will always sell, especially to tourists and foreigners. Once you’ve been operating for a while and know how many of your crafts sell most, approach a manufacturer, provide the most popular designs and quantities, and automate production to save time and money. 

The ideas mentioned above are a few of many potentially profitable businesses that people in India are making money from right now. Take your time to decide which is the best option for you. Look at our resources section to create a robust Business Plan so you can set up your dream idea successfully. 

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