35 small business ideas in South Africa you should consider in 2020

Most people are now interested in activities that directly feed the passions and make life worthwhile.

While the career market remains a conventional way of earning a living in the 21st century, it is proving ineffective and less reliable for aggressive wealth hunters.

These businesses are not only cost-friendly to start but will let you work from the comfort of your home.

So what are the best business ideas? It is challenging to settle down on the most profitable business opportunity when there are thousands of suitable alternatives.

Listed below are small businesses in South Africa that should help you make an informed decision in your entrepreneurial prospects:

1.  Marketing services

With some skills and knowledge in marketing, you can pick a suitable business opportunity and make it work. The high entrepreneurial competition calls for intricate marketing skills to stand out in the market. If you feel you are eligible to help organizations market their services and products, then hit the road with a digital marketing agency. Besides influencer marketing, there are boundless opportunities you can tap as you build your brand. If you are skilled in search engine optimization, then this is a business niche for you.

2. Affiliate marketing

This business is not only easy to start but also easy to run. Affiliate marketing entails promoting company services and products at a commission. Start by selecting a product which you like and then start pushing it for a profit. It is arguably more accessible to start an affiliate marketing business if you have a website. Have a means of proving your success through statistics if you can persuade potential clients to use your service.

3. Become an assistant or seller at eBay

Unlike affiliate marketing, eBay sellers promote and sell products to clients. You can opt to sell for self or on behalf of others at a commission. It is worth noting that the jobs come with risks, but it is well paying if you can pick the right distributors and secure your banking details while online.

4. Graphic designer

Technology is taking over the world with high paying jobs like graphic design. Companies are interested in branding, making the service on demand. People skilled in applications such as Photoshop and Illustrator can conveniently start a business as graphic designers. Besides branding, you can design creative logos, information sheets, letters, advertisements, newsletters, and magazines.

5. Join tax consultancy business

Strategize yourself as a tax consultant and attract impressive returns from institutions that want their taxes prepared and filled. Such is a necessity to enable companies to shift their attention to routine operations. The business requires relevant training and expert skills in the accountancy and taxation field.

6. Become a paid blogger or vlogger

Blogging and vlogging are two strategic business ideas that attract persons with specialized skills in any given field.. While it is fun to share what you understand better, you will be attracting some good pay. Grab a high-resolution camera and start a vlog where you will share information in the form of videos. With a blog, you only need to set up your blogging site and prepare engaging content.

7. Editorial services

You can start an editorial business right away at no cost and turn it to a lucrative business in the short run. Some of the services that sell well in this business include ghostwriting, indexing, proofreading, magazine article writing, and copywriting among others.

8. Meal planning

Several people are looking for meal preparation experts with the proper understanding of a balanced diet and a good record when it comes to catering services. This is one of the food business ideas in South Africa that requires you to possess skills in coming up with ingredients, creating recipes, elaborate the nutritional value of servings, and stay within a prescribed budget.

9. Online photo business

The niche is highly suitable for professional photographers with a limitless passion for for clean camera work. With a camera and a computer, you can launch this ever on-demand business opportunity. Take several high-quality photos and place them on sale for potential clients to buy them.

10. Translator

If you are proficient in specific on-demand languages, then this is a business opportunity for you. Interestingly, you do not need any form of investment to begin this business but stand a chance to earn huge returns of about $40,000 annually. Most clients prefer to contract translators for agreeable courses.

11. Survey taking

Surveys are a good alternative for a steady income stream, especially when signed with multiple employer sites. Most of these surveys will take a minimum of your time and come with good returns. Some of the prominent survey job sites include MySurveys, Global Test Market, InboxDollars, Harris Poll, and EarningStation.

12. Virtual or personal assistant

Providing professional assistant services both online and offline is a well-paying business opportunity for an individual with unique skills in particular areas of interest. However, less prevalent in the country, these jobs attract high paying clients ranging from small business to corporates. Unlike their counterparts, virtual assistants enjoy much freedom in getting to decide on factors such as clients, working hours, and hourly pay rates. You can give this opportunity a try by first creating and promoting your online expertise profile to attract a stream of well-paying clients through common services such as Upwork.com.

13. Hairdressing services

With a salon or hair cutting experience, you can launch this business opportunity for a financial breakthrough. Consult with the local authority for state requirement compliance. You can equally brand yourself as a makeup artist and even open a massage parlor. The good thing about hairdressing is that you can establish yourself as a mobile service provider. It is, however, advisable to get a shop so your business can become more sustainable.

14. Interior designer

The desire for comfort and luxury drives homeowners and business merchants to decorate their homes such as to share their vision statement. Start by finding out what clients want and compare it with what you can afford to offer based on your skills and financial ability. You should be passionate and well versed in this line of business.

15. Electronics repair services

Repairing electronics is a well-paying service that feeds several South Africans. The business is rapidly becoming necessary as technology continues to expand in computing, phone, camera, television, and speakers among other electronics.

16. Social media consultancy

Social media is not only changing our long-established social landscape but also how we routinely engage in commercial activities. Almost every South African is an active user of prominent social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and WhatsApp among others. You can take advantage of the ever-growing online community by establishing your brand as a social media influencer.

17. Tutoring services

Tutoring services for both children and adults are always on demand. There are many clients in South Africa looking to study the second language or need experts in a particular subject of their interest. Tutoring is convenient because you can do it at people’s homes, online, or at any other convenient place of your choice.

18. Grocery delivery services

The service is high on demand by individual customers and big supermarkets. It is an interesting business to pick up since some people are too busy to run all the errands, and such will become some of your happiest customers. Even more interesting, you can couple the business with other well-paying opportunities in the delivery line.

19. Gardening and lawn care

Both gardening and lawn mowing are highly rewarding businesses which run throughout the year, guaranteeing a steady stream of income. Besides, you can carry out concurrent activities in herb farming, raking, and snow removal when lawn mowing or gardening are not at their peak. The business is highly dynamic and suitable for both rural and urban setups, only taking up little space.

20. Developing chatbots

It is interesting how much technology has influenced modern-day commercial activities. Let us check the facts; a decade ago businesses needed websites following which the need for portable phone apps took over. Apparently, every company needs a way to engage live customers through instant messaging platforms. If you own relevant skills in AI and chatbots, why not sell your skills for lucrative pay? You can also learn to utilize free design tools to harness the opportunity while it is still ripe.

21. Direct sales representative

Unlike traditional door to door sales, becoming a direct sales representative is now fashionable and equally well paying. Identify a successful brand and become its sales representative. Working for leading companies such as Mary Kay, Tupperware, and Avon will earn you great returns and at the same time expose you to the real business world.

22. Currency trading

It is now manageable to become a currency trader compared to the recent past when it was reserved for tycoons. With several guide materials such as magazines and tutorials, the business could turn out to become your thing. Master basic analytic skills and technical skills before venturing into currency trading business. Besides these skills, you will need to acquire a computer, tablet, or a decent phone.

23. Plan projects and events at a fee

Events and project planning requires a hands-on approach and can be executed remotely. The business falls in work from home category. It is, however, necessary to engage your clients at an individual level at hotels, their offices, homes, and even cafes. Setting up your personal office is an even better approach to getting the work done professionally

24. Computer trainer

Several seniors are developing interests in acquiring technological skills which were hardly accessible in the past. Young people also provide a broad market for upcoming technologies, which are showing no signs of stopping, but rather becoming the tradition. You can train your clients on how to use their windows or mac computers among other applications. You can as well specialize in simple computing applications such as emailing and internet to earn a living.

25. Become a property manager

Help your clients manage their properties and make sure they are running smoothly at a fee. Present your contacts as a primary communication channel for clients to access different services. By maintaining the properties well and responsibly, you will attract even more clients to your venture.

26. Courier services

The demand for courier services is at its peak given that more and more people are relocating to urban setups. Establish your business and provide pickup and drop services to interested clients. Set a reasonable fee to attract more clients to your business.

27. Life coaching

With a proven track of the record, you can show your success by training others for a living. People aspiring to travel in your path will be more than willing to hear concerning your experiences, successes, and failures as a lesson for them. You can as well offer coaching and mentoring services to people interested in mastering specific mental and emotional skills.

28. Laundry services

This is one way through which you can make fast money in South Africa. In starting the business, you do not need to learn additional skills except for a few requirements. Depending on your financial capability, you can set up a laundry shop or carry out the business on a domestic basis. The returns vary considerably based on your location and target population.

29. Caregiving services

Caregiving services guarantee good returns both in the short run and the long term. Start by pursuing professional training and other certification programs. The fees are often negotiable and based on the level of operation. Caregiving is easy to start and sustain as long as you have a passion for the niche.

30. Babysitting services

This business is as old as childbearing, making it a profitable and sustainable business for passionate business persons. Hit the road and make money through babysitting. Seeking advice from experienced persons will help you be an excellent baby sitter. Similarly, you can work as a nanny or tutor depending on the level of your skills. Alternatively, you can work as a baby’s teacher if you have all the required qualifications.

31. Childproofing services

Most traditional living areas in South Africa are more hazardous for growing children. If you are trained in childproofing, take your best foot affront for some returns. The business is more paying to the service providers with proper certification.

32. Taxi or personal driver services

If you have a good driving record, then it is time to start earning by working as a personal or taxi driver. Both men and women can take advantage of this business opportunity which is slowly becoming institutionalized. Join Uber or hire out your car and driving services to earn good returns.

33. Bicycle repair 

Several university and high school students find it convenient to use bicycles when commuting to school. Every so often, bicycle consumers among them professional cyclists require bicycle repair services, making it a good business to invest in.

34. Daycare services

Most parents are now becoming busier, focusing on their careers, and thus making it harder for them to attend to their children fully. Opening a daycare in your neighborhood or a town set-up will attract several children whose parents are willing to pay for care-giving services. All you need is a secure space to host these minors and give them appropriate care that will please your clients.

35. Bridal concierge

Weddings and associated planning are tedious and often beyond the ability of both the bride and groom. If you have excellent organizational skills, you can tap into this field and build a strong portfolio in this high paying business opportunity.

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