Retail Business Ideas You Can Start on a Small Scale and Make Money

There are several retail business ideas you can start on a small scale and make money today. But first, what is a retail business? A retail business is a business that buys items in small quantities from wholesalers and sells them to consumers for their use. Retailers mostly sell their products in stores and kiosks but with the advent of technology, many retailers are now involved in online business. With technology, retailers can now sell their products via mediums like e-commerce websites or their social media handles.

You might be wondering which retail business you should start because of your low capital. Worry no more because almost all retail businesses require a low capital for the startup.

Retail Business Ideas You Can Start on a Small Scale and Make Money

Retail Business Ideas You Can Start on a Small Scale and Make Money

In this article, I compile a list of ten (10) retail business ideas to start with low capital and make money from it. So, take a chill pill as you go through these businesses.

1. Food Store Business.

I start with a food store business because food is arguably the highest demand item in our lives. Man cannot do without food and as a result those in the food store business including food retailers are always making cool cash on repeat.

Your food store can offer either cooked or uncooked food. Whichever of the two you decide to go into, make that sure you display your products in a way that your customers can easily see and make their choice without much stress.

2 Snacks and Confectionaries Business.

This business deal with selling items that are sugary and rich in carbohydrates. Confectionaries include all forms of sweets and chocolates while snacks include, cakes, chin-chin, meat-pie, doughnut, and others.

While Confectionaries are always demanded especially by children and young adults, snacks are demanded by people of all stages. Hence, there is a lot of retail business opportunities in the Snacks and Confectionaries business line

3 Cooking Gas Refilling Business.

Most Nigerians use gas for cooking these days. As such, the demand for cooking gas is high. To start this business, you need to find a re-filling plant nearby (or far off) where you will be buying the cooking gas in bulk, then sell it in kilograms to customers.

4 Hair, Cosmetics, and Skincare Business.

This is one of the most growing industries in the world. Because women are always looking for a way to improve their bodies and look good, the demand for human hair, skincare product, and cosmetics and other body improvement products keeps being on the increase daily.

Hair, Cosmetics, and skincare business involves selling a range of body enhancement products like wigs, moisturizer, face oils, nourishing creams, make-up products, nails, nail polish, and others.

5 Homemade Liquid Soap Productions.

Presently, there is a high demand for liquid soap in Nigeria that the well-established brands cannot meet. This is because almost every household needs liquid soap and detergents.

These days, there are many homemade liquid soaps available in the market, packaged in small bottles, and sold at a cheap price.

You can buy this liquid soap in bulk and re-sell it in pieces to households. Alternatively, you can learn how to make liquid soap and sell this either in bulk or pieces to consumers.

6 Recharge Card Business.

I don’t have to explain how lucrative this business is because you can attest to this by the way you buy recharge cards frequently. People are always in need of recharge cards to make calls or buy data. This is why recharge card sellers are doing well. You can also start this business with as low as ten thousand naira (N10,000).

7 Tailoring.

Tailors are always needed because people are always buying new clothes and need these to be sewn by tailors or seamstresses. To do this business you might need to acquire the skill of tailoring. This might take you a month, two, or more depending on how intellectual you are. However, once you are done with the skill, you will start earning money comfortably from the business.

8 Used-clothes Business (Okrika bale business).

This is a very lucrative business that makes people a lot of money in no time. Due to the poor economy of the country, many Nigerians cannot afford first-grade clothes.  Therefore, many end up buying second hands clothes.

You can find good markets to buy bales of second-hand or used clothes in popular Nigerian towns like Kano, Lagos, and Aba and resell them to consumers for huge profits.

9 Blogging.

If you consider yourself a wordsmith, then blogging is the best business for you. To start this business, you need a laptop or phone, a good internet connection, research skills, and a lot of time.

You can set a free blog on WordPress, Blogspot, or wiz although I do not really recommend this. If you really want to go into blogging, get a paid, hosted blog and start posting good non-plagiarized contents on it. It is also essential that you learn Search Engine Optimization (SEO) or hire an SEO expert to help out in this regard.

10 Website Design and Maintenance.

Most Brands and personalities now use websites for their promotions. This makes the demand for web designers very high. If you can learn how to design professional websites, register domains, and host websites and blogs then could be in for good business. Web design is something you can easily learn on YouTube.


All these businesses are those that you can start with a little or no capital and be able to make a huge profit in no time if you do everything right and avoid mistakes. To succeed in them, anyway, it is advisable to get mentorship who would guide you in the path of progress. Besides, I recommend that you enroll in a business school near you which will provide you with substantive administrative knowledge and managerial skills to help you run the business effectively. All things going well, you should see real growth and profits in your business in a matter of weeks or months if everything goes according to plan.



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