15 Businesses You Can Start with Little to No Capital

businesses you can start with a small capital
businesses you can start with a small capital

With today’s technology, there are lots of business you can start with little to no capital. Having an online business may be the most practical choice, but there are also other more conventional businesses that you can try. If you have little to no money but have lots of time to spare, you can consider any of the 15 businesses listed below.

Businesses You Can Start with a Small Capital

1. Virtual assistant services

Skills, laptop, and an internet connection. These are all you need if you want to become a virtual assistant. Of course, you should also be patient, diligent, and good at time management. The work can vary with each client but may include social media marketing, content writing, SEO, data entry, web development or graphic design. Some companies specialize in virtual assistant services such as Virtual Helper 247.

2. Affiliate marketing

If you have a knack for writing, have lots of followers on social media, and can have someone build you a website, you can earn extra income through affiliate marketing. It goes like this – you need to register as an affiliate on websites such as Amazon. Then, you will be provided with a special affiliate link. You have to promote a product or write a product review. Then, you have to put your affiliate link for that particular product. Whenever someone clicks and buys using that link, you will receive a commission.

3. Drop shipping

In drop shipping, you sell products online, collect the payment, pay suppliers, and let them take care of the delivery. There’s no huge startup costs or investments in inventory. There are many drop ship product suppliers. Some provide a variety of products, while others specialize in one product line. Just do your research, and you will find a reputable company.

4. Homemade soaps

Anyone who can follow directions on an online soap-making tutorial can learn how to make soaps. It involves relatively few tools and materials. Basically, you mix various forms of oil with scents and lye. You also need a mold for your soap bars, which you can buy on Amazon for an affordable price. When it comes to soaps, creative packaging and marketing are important. You can sell to friends initially, and if successful, invest in a booth at a mall or trade show.

5. Creating information products

If you are good in a specific niche, you can use that knowledge to earn some money. You can create information products like eBooks, instructional videos, or courses. Udemy is an example of a website where you can sell short courses.

6. Tutoring

Nowadays, online platforms make it easier to market tutoring services. If you can help students with academic subjects, you can sign up with Tutor.com. If you want to tutor people on a wide variety of subjects (cooking, singing, sports, etc.) try Wyzant.com.

7. Event planner

If you’re good at organizing and planning, then taking care of arrangements for birthdays or weddings can be a profitable business. You must take care of the venue, food, audio-video equipment, games, emcee, etc. Of course, you should get the approval of your clients before finalizing the details.

8. Catering

If you’ve always wanted to start a food business but don’t want to invest in a restaurant, you can consider starting your own catering business directly from your kitchen. You can use your existing cookware, then after a while, buy additional items such as pots, pans, spoons, forks, plates, glasses, knives, serviettes, serving trays, storage containers, etc.

9. Personal trainer

All of us want to be fit and healthy. However, it can be challenging to start a fitness routine, stay on track, and make sure you’re exercising correctly without injuring yourself. Your responsibilities as a personal trainer are to motivate, create an exercise program, and monitor people while they’re doing workouts.

10. Grocery delivery

Buying groceries from a supermarket or grocery store involves transportation cost, finding a parking slot, taking products from shelves one by one, and falling in line to pay. Many people find these a real hassle. This is where you come in. You can look for customers who are willing to pay for groceries to be delivered to their homes.

11. Tour guide

Tourism is a huge and profitable industry, especially during the peak season. If you know a tourist spot like the back of your hand, you can start charging tourists for a guided tour. In some cases, you may first need to get a license from the concerned government authority to become a tour guide.

12. Dog training

This is one business you can’t get into without previous experience. If you want to be a dog whisperer like Cesar Milan, a stint at a pet store or watching dog training tutorials on YouTube might help. You can start your dog training business at home to keep costs low. Dog owners can bring their pets there, or alternatively, they can call you to come over and train their dog.

13. House painting

In some states, you don’t need a license to become a painting contractor (states have different regulations, check to verify). You can learn house painting tips from YouTube, Home Depot workshops, or you can practice painting around your own home. With this type of business, you just need a few equipment – paintbrush, roller, sprayer, mask, and ladder.

14. Cleaning service

When it comes to cleaning service, you can start off with supplies and equipment you’re already using in your home. Then, as you get more clients, you can invest in specialized cleaning equipment. You may be surprised to know how many people need this kind of service.

15. Selling on eBay

Selling on eBay is a simple and straightforward business. Start by selling things in your home that you don’t use anymore. Then, use the proceeds to buy products from thrift stores that you can later resell.


Many big businesses started from humble beginnings. Like all great business ideas, it all starts with filling a need. Find your niche and offer the best product or service possible. These businesses you can start with a small capital are a good starting point for your dream empire.