A wise man will make more opportunities than he finds.
–Sir Francis Bacon
Before you even think of how you will organise and operate a small business, you need to find a business opportunity. Beyond being a good money-making idea, you should evaluate a business opportunity against some important screening criteria. You could ask yourself these questions:
o Does it go well with your personal skills, experience, and characteristics?
o Does it inspire you with confidence and enthusiasm?
o Do you find convincing evidence of a viable target market?
o Do you believe it can be done with the finances you can muster?
o Do you think it will generate enough income to cover your needs?
There are many types of small business that you could consider. It may help to divide businesses into four categories.
In the small business sector, service businesses comprise at least two-thirds and they also exhibit the greatest rate of growth. promotions The nature of a service business is that you as provider undertake to perform a task for the customer. This implies that you will be in possession of some specialised training, experience, or equipment.
Service businesses generally are small because they depend very much on the skills of the business owner; these skills are then supported by a modest investment in appropriate equipment. Because of the wide variety of services that people need, the service sector is an inexhaustible mine of small business ideas. Some examples of successful service businesses are given below.
o Doctors and health professional
o Financial planner
o Insurance agent
o Real estate broker
o Gardening services
o Hotel and motel
o Bed and breakfast
o Carpet cleaner
o Childcare centre
o Translation service
Close to one-fifth of the small business sector does business by retailing. It is a simple business. The retailer buys goods (either from a manufacturer or wholesaler) and sells these to consumers. As such, they are the final link in the chain for distributing consumer goods. Retailing includes discount stores, specialty shops, and convenience stores. Other examples of retailing businesses are listed here.
o Petrol stations
o Wine shops
o Meat shops and butchers
o Hardware stores
o Sporting shops
o Clothing stores
o Shoe shops
o Grocery stores
o Jewellery stores
Manufacturing comprises less than one-tenth of small businesses. Although larger firms may dominate manufacturing, there are diverse small businesses that do splendidly with producing goods sold to consumers or to other businesses. For the average small business in manufacturing, it pays to target a specialised niche market. Some of these businesses are mentioned below.
o Jewellery making
o Joinery making
o Quick print shop
o Cheese making
o Furniture making
o Home beer brewing
Wholesaling involves buying goods from manufacturers and selling them to retailers. Wholesalers generally do not sell goods to the public directly; in some instances, they may be importers. Below are some businesses where wholesalers are active.
o Building products
o Beer, wine and spirits
o Medical supplies
o Hardware supplies
o Petroleum products
In the end, your search for possible businesses will depend on the things that interest you. Remember, what is a threat to some is an opportunity to others.