Humans are wonderfully different from one another, meaning there are countless ways to think, create, act and live. Every successful entrepreneur has cultivated their unique passions and interests and learned valuable lessons in life and business. Their experiences can serve them well professionally as they embark on new ventures. If you need a little inspiration for your own entrepreneurial dreams, see the ideas below to get you started.
Great business ideas often stem from an entrepreneur’s attempts to solve problems they and others have experienced. Consider the following creative business ideas that may inspire your next venture. We’ve grouped them by category to make them easier to browse.
Diane Eschenbach, an entrepreneur and author of How to Quickly Start a Business Online, said she thinks online businesses are a great option for retirees, as long as the entrepreneur doesn’t let technology intimidate them. She suggested curation sites, which aggregate information for easy reading, as one of the most accessible and engaging online business ideas to pursue.
Consulting and coaching
Consulting and coaching are excellent business ideas for older entrepreneurs who can leverage their passion and experience. Skills from previous jobs and rich life experiences make retirees well positioned to share their knowledge.
Members of mastermind groups meet regularly to collaborate and solve problems or issues by tapping into the group’s collective experience, skills and knowledge. As seasoned professionals, older entrepreneurs hold an advantage in this market. Owners of mastermind groups can generate thousands of dollars a month, depending on the size and location of the group and the premium they set for becoming a member.
Over 36,000 food truck businesses exist in the U.S. as of 2023, representing an increase of nearly 10 percent from 2022. Although starting a food truck business means facing stiff competition and working long hours, it has a high potential for handsome rewards. And compared with starting a restaurant, the food truck business comes with relatively low overhead costs.
Yoga harnesses the best elements of fitness and relaxation to create a mind, body and spirit connection that rejuvenates and strengthens. Yoga studios find particular success in metropolitan areas with a young demographic, where they can expand their offerings to include food, beverages or yoga accessories.
What once seemed like a high-tech, futuristic device is now a reality: 3D-printing applications allow users to create physical objects at home and act as low-volume manufacturing machines for small businesses. As a business itself, 3D-printing companies can create templates for 3D-printer owners to use or print toys, parts and other objects for clients.
Captivated by the macabre? Have a strong stomach and a penchant for dirty jobs? If so, a biohazard cleaning company might fit your interests well. Baxter Restoration, a cleaning and reconstruction company in Orlando, Florida, offers biohazard cleaning services and may present a jumping-off point for entrepreneurs who are interested in a similar idea. Baxter Restoration specializes in blood, crime scene, meth lab, and hoarding cleanup and restoration to create a habitable space.
A biodegradable coffin company appeals to the rising demand for environmentally friendly and sustainable products. Biodegradable coffins reduce the carbon footprint of the funeral home industry and offer an affordable alternative during a challenging time in many people’s lives. Your business would also have a natural tie-in to Earth Day every year.
Also known as flameless cremation or alkaline hydrolysis, this process uses water to turn the body to ash. Much like environmentally friendly coffin makers, purveyors of flameless cremation reduce carbon emissions and energy, and they don’t use fossil fuels. If you’re concerned about climate change, this could be an impactful venture for you.
Building and promoting financial education resources online for the senior market is a strong idea if you’re passionate about financial literacy and serving an older generation. In addition, you may find success in asset management for retirees by helping clients understand the lifestyle they can afford after retirement.
The in-home-care market exists for older adults who choose not to move to a senior living community but struggle to keep up with grocery shopping, the maintenance of their residences, and other self-care activities. While they are not incapable of performing the activities of daily living, these older adults need a little help ensuring their safety and comfort. This would be a great fit if you have experience as a caregiver or personal assistant.
Selling or storing possessions
If an older adult stays in their home, they may purge their possessions. A business that helps seniors sell or store possessions fills a desperate need and joins a busy niche. Self-storage caters to people who may want to keep family heirlooms, but not in their homes. Retail helpers and antique sellers who assist in selling vintage possessions will most likely serve an older market or interact with their adult children after their parents’ death.
If you haven’t found a business idea that speaks to your skills and interests, consider the following ways to discover new business ideas.
If you’re looking for new business ideas, you should review subreddits on Reddit and “Ask me anything” threads. Here, you can ask experts and celebrities questions that may lead to ideas for small or midsize businesses.
Your loved ones can be helpful when you’re deciding what type of business to launch. Your family and friends usually know you best and can help you identify your strengths and how you might apply them when you start a business. Additionally, two (or more) heads are better than one for brainstorming.
Are you a go-to problem-solver for specific issues in your loved ones’ lives? For example, maybe friends seek your guidance when cooking new recipes, or perhaps family members reach out for fashion advice. If there’s an area of expertise in which you thrive, you could make a profitable business out of it.
Today, you can create a business from nearly any passion. For example, if you enjoy writing, you might consider launching your own publishing company or magazine. If you love baking, you can start your own bakery. Consider the hobbies and interests that set your soul on fire and how you might capitalize on them. Pursuing your passions will also keep you motivated when business is slow because you’ll genuinely enjoy your work.
If your talents lie in identifying or creating the next great must-have product, use a Pinterest account to get inspiration. Pay attention to the comments section on pins related to your passion or a niche industry to spark new ideas.
While no formula can guarantee that a business will find immediate success, ask yourself these questions to gauge your idea’s value:
Many creative business ideas exist. However, a business idea likely won’t become a profitable venture if you aren’t passionate about it or if it doesn’t fill a gap in the market. Ensure that your business idea is financially viable so you can create something sustainable and profitable. While startup mistakes are inevitable, vetting your idea and starting small can set you on a path to success.
Sammi Caramela and Saige Driver contributed to this article.