5 Low Cost Small Business Ideas that Don’t Require Much Capital

(Last Updated On: October 4, 2021)

If you are looking to start a business this year, don’t worry, it’s not too late. 2020 has not been kind to the Indian economy, but that does not mean you cannot start your dream business.

Despite the Government introducing new measures to help businesses affected by the COVID lockdown, it is tough to obtain capital to kick start a new business. 

But that’s not entirely impossible. Here are a few low-cost business ideas you can start with zero to just a little capital.

Small Business ideas for kids

If the lockdown has taught parents anything, it is the value of schools giving them a short break from dealing with their kids’ tantrums and constant needs. Despite a lockdown, an economic slowdown or just bad weather, one thing is always certain; kids need to study, play and learn.

Here are a few businesses you can start with less capital:

Handmade trinkets for kids

Every girl needs a hairband, and if you don’t think that’s a good idea – just ask Ninu Jacob, a mompreneur who makes crotchet hair accessories for kids. Ninu Jacob procures knitting material and creates adorable accessories for young girls. Her key challenge is managing all the orders that keep coming in since raw material costs are low.

Crèches and online sessions 

A daycare for children in smaller localities in India begins at home as parents may initially prefer smaller, more intimate settings to leave their children while they are away at work. Besides regular babysitting, you could also provide value-added services’ ranging from support with their homework, providing nutritious food, or teaching them new skills such as dancing, craft, painting etc. – all dependent on the parents’ paying capacity. 

Online classes based on your skill sets

When we mentioned kids wanting to learn all the time, we should have mentioned it applies to adults too, maybe even more now. Setting up an online class is easy, all you need to work on is the branding part.

Also read: The online teaching guide you need in 2020 

Establish a small network via WhatsApp or social media channels to get your online classes started. Our suggestion: In order to attract your first set of students, offer a Pay what you want’ feature to your audience. If they like the class, they can pay a higher amount. This helps you build a network of loyal attendees. Host regular webinars, podcasts and promote your future workshops, LIVE sessions etc.

For example: Sneak a peek into Shreya Sharan Pawar’s online classes to empower women entrepreneurs. Shreya is an online marketing strategist and business coach. She started her business to help other entrepreneurs find their calling. A simple, yet effective online business.

Home chef/caterer

A new trend which has morphed into a profitable business is selling home-cooked food to anyone living in the city. A creative low-cost business idea, home cooks are on the rise – and you can get started too, for little to no cost. Spread the word in your circle and ask your friends to spread the word about your business.

Dabble in a little social media marketing and let your fans know what you’re cooking a day/week in advance. Once orders start to pile in, you can source raw material in bulk for a lower cost and make profit in a month! For example, Happy Belly Bakes, a home chef expanded her expertise into baking and cooking delicious food during the lockdown. Now, the brand has collaborated with small cafes to sell their desserts. 

Financial consultancies

Tax season is upon us, so if you are a certified professional with a financial qualification that can help other businesses sort out their finances, keep your CV, website and best suit ready.

You can also provide your financial expertise to people who like you, want to set up a business from scratch. Being a consultant is one of those low-cost business ideas that also requires zero setups. If it’s your existing 9-5, you can simply do some freelancing on the side before your business takes off.

Related: If you are looking for expert financial advice on how to manage cash flow, this ebook might help you. Click the image to download your free working capital management ebook.

ebook banner cash flow management

On-demand services

If you are a technical architect with a niche specialisation, set up a profile on a job site like Fiverr or Linkedin and offer your services to companies who might need it for a quick project.

On-demand services can range from offering DJ services for a party to creating chatbots for startups (which is a rising trend). Be sure to mention your skills across social media, job platforms and through your network.

For example, Professional illustrator Sonaksha has taken to Instagram to offer her artistic skills to anyone who needs it, and she has gained a massive following, and professional clients too!  Sonaksha has curated children’s book covers, digital art and notebook covers for publishing houses and small businesses. She recently set up her online studio to expand her business.

Low-cost business ideas can be profitable. What takes time and effort is building your brand and furnishing skills you need to let your business take off. We understand a lot of new entrepreneurs must be asking themselves ” Do I know what it takes to start a business?”

Yes, you do. Because we have curated an entire online e-learning platform to help you with that. mojoVersity is India’s first e-learning portal built especially for small businesses to start and grow their businesses with curated online courses by professionals. Pick any course and get a certificate of completion once you finish. The bonus – it is completely FREE!


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