35 Low Cost Retail Business Ideas

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Opening a retail store is a popular way to start your own business. There are a variety of products for sale and you can run your business in person or online. Some retail business ideas may require a lot of capital, but this is not true for everyone. Here are some options for those on a budget.

What is a retail business?

A retail business includes any business that sells goods or services directly to consumers for consumption or use. Traditionally, retail companies have included physical shop windows where people buy tangible goods. But many now offer products online or over the phone and ship products to consumers.

The retail industry in 2022

The retail sector has changed dramatically in recent decades. Many stores are now online or even fully mobile. The pandemic further alienated the industry from a face-to-face model. However, with the right retail business idea in the right market, any kind of showcase can still be successful.

Read more: Retail Stats You Should Know

Why You Should Consider Starting a Retail Business

If you are looking for a profitable business to start in 2022, the retail industry offers many opportunities. Here are some of the key benefits of starting a retail business:

  • Variety of opportunities: No matter what interests you, there is a retail business related to it.
  • Community involvement: With a physical retail business, you can create a more vibrant downtown district and participate in community events and events.
  • Simple business model: Some companies have complicated offers. But a retail store usually only sells products with a slight profit. This makes it easier to manage basic planning.
  • Personal interactions: With a physical location, you can interact with guests throughout the day, ideal for extroverts.
  • Low cost options: Some retail business ideas may require significant capital. But there are also online shop windows and micro businesses that can start with almost anything.

Profitable retail business ideas

Many small town shops and business ideas do not require much start-up capital. So there is a lot of room for profit over time. Here are some retail business ideas to consider in 2022.

1. Healthy eating store

A health food store is usually a physical retail business, as it can offer new options. However, you can still start this type of online business and send packaged food.

2. Cafeteria

Cafes serve fresh drinks and snacks to local guests. Create a comfortable environment and additional services such as free wifi to attract customers.

3. Organic food store

Organic foods are those that are grown or produced without pesticides or chemicals. Many consumers prefer natural foods for health or environmental reasons.

4. Pet Store

With a pet store, you can offer pets, food, and accessories to members of your local community. Many also include additional services such as hairdressing.

5. Food Truck Business

Food trucks are actually retail businesses, as they sell food directly to consumers. This is also a low cost business idea as you do not need a complete shop window.

6. Second hand shop

Second-hand shops sell second-hand items such as furniture, clothing and home decor at discounted prices. Many accept donations or work on consignment, so you can keep your profit margin high.

7. Furniture Business

With a furniture business, you can sell or produce pieces from leading manufacturers. Inventory may cost more, but parts are usually sold at higher prices.

8. Ice cream parlor

If you have space for a small shop, an ice cream parlor may be ideal. Just install a countertop with a few flavors and coverage.

9. Subscription Cash Service

Subscription boxes include a set of related items sent directly to subscribers periodically. This has become an increasingly successful business model in recent years.

10. Mobile store

A mobile store can sell just about anything. The store would be hosted on a mobile app or website.

Read more: 3 rules to help your retail business deliver new products that customers are asking for

11. Candy store

Candy is a cheap, easy-to-sell product from a local or online store.

12. Sports shop

Sports shops sell a variety of equipment and clothing for local athletes. You can even offer products online.

13. Dollar Stores

Dollar stores offer a variety of products for a dollar. Buy cheap products in bulk to maximize profits.

14. Florist

Florists sell cut flowers, bouquets and custom arrangements for special events.

15. Beauty salon

Beauty salons are considered retail companies as they offer services directly to consumers. Many also sell hair and beauty products.

16. Craft beer retailer

Craft beer is gaining popularity in many markets. Store unique flavors and brands for customers to try.

17. Kiosk

Kiosks are small outdoor businesses that store newspapers, magazines, and convenience items. Start-up costs are usually low due to small location and economic inventory.

18. Vape Shop Business

Steam stores are booming in 2022. There are a variety of flavors and accessories to store.

19. Fashion shop

Fashion stores offer clothing and accessories in person or online.

20. Online store

Online stores can sell just about anything. You don’t even have to carry the inventory physically if you have an off-site compliance service.

Read more: Small Business Ideas for Beginners

21. Local market

Local markets can bring groceries or any popular items to your neighborhood. They are generally known for their personal and friendly service.

22. Vending machines

Vending machines are like automated retailers. Place them in crowded places with people interested in your products.

23. Gift shop

Gift shops carry small items perfect for giving away. They are especially popular in downtown districts and resorts.

24. Bakery

Bakeries offer cakes, pastries and various desserts.

25. Children’s shop

A children’s store can bring a variety of toys, clothing and supplies for children and families.

26. Spare parts store

Auto parts are always in demand. Stores can carry a variety or specialize in an item such as tires.

27. Second hand bookstore

Used books are pretty cheap. And many consumers enjoy the experience of browsing these stores.

28. Technical accessories store

Technological accessories such as phone cases and Bluetooth speakers are quite popular. And many are cheap to carry.

29. Art Supply Store

Art supplies stores are especially popular in cities and college towns. Many also carry handicrafts and household items.

30. Medical Device Store

Medical device stores are pretty recession-proof and help community members who need it.

31. Record store

Records are enjoying a resurgence. Store them by buying lots from individuals or selling real estate.

32. Collectors seller

Collectibles, such as trading cards and coins, are always sold at decent prices, both in person and online.

33. Handmade seller

Handmade businesses are quite popular online. But there are also some physical retail stores that offer these items.

34. Farmer’s market seller

Farmers and food producers can offer their products directly to local markets.

35. Pharmacy

Pharmacies sell medicinal products and many also offer additional products such as cards and cosmetics.

What is the best low cost retail business idea to start with?

If you’re trying to save money while starting a retail business, start an online store. All you need is a domain, hosting, and inventory, instead of a physical store. You can also reduce costs through marketplaces or compliance and dropshipping services.

Which type of retail store is most profitable?

Retail profits vary widely by industry. Options with high profit margins include medical supplies, pharmacy products, and technology accessories. Online stores also tend to be more profitable right away, as start-up costs are low.

How can you open a retail store without money?

Opening an online store is the easiest way to open a retail store without money. There are many marketplaces that allow you to list products for almost nothing and pay a small commission when they sell. Start with used items you already have, such as collectibles, and use the benefits to buy other inventories.

Image: Envato Elements

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