These small business ideas for women include some that have worked in the past and some that you can start today from the comfort of home. I hope this small business ideas list will inspire many women to start a small scale business for ladies.
With an increase in the cost of living becoming a problem even in tier-2 cities of the world, it doesn’t hurt if housewives start running small businesses to earn extra income for their daily requirements.
It also helps the GDP of the country if we can create offer valid and actionable small scale business ideas for housewives.
In India, 60% of all industries belong to the SME sector and this is why Indian Gov. is doing its bit to encourage small business owners to set up shop.
In times when women’s empowerment is being heralded as the way forward, we still come across certain cases in the rural sector where women are forced to work as domestic help for other well-to-do families.
With a little training and advice, starting a small business from home with the ideas below can help them live a good life by earning money for their spouses or for their children if they are single mothers.
Below are some home-based business ideas for moms which can help inspire women to come up with their own small scale business ideas for women’s empowerment.
These business ideas for ladies might be small, but such ideas can create a huge impact if they inspire even a few women to start a home business that creates financial security for themselves and their family.
10 Successful Small Business Ideas For Indian Women
1. Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad
This famous co-operative was started in 1959 in Mumbai by 7 Gujarati women who stayed in Lohana Niwas of Girgaum Locality. With a seed capital of just Rs.80, they wanted to start an enterprise with only one skill they were all expert in i.e. cooking.
Guidance from one Chhaganlal Karamsi Parekh helped them focus on quality, product standardization and proper maintenance of accounts.
The firm was named “Shri Mahila Griha Udyog Lijjat Papad” and was registered as a Co-Operative society under the then recently introduced Companies Act (1956).
The business grew from the women doing all cooking by themselves to the employment of 25 girls aged above 18 who were assisting them in the process.
Steadily, the Business grew to different parts of the country with several women agents helping the brand to reach rural lands as well.
By 2002, they had a turnover of Rs. 3 billion and exports of Rs. 100 million which was an astonishing record to be achieved by a co-operative society of Indian origin.
Can you come up with a similar business model that will work by creating a co-operative for women? If so, you could very well become a successful social entrepreneur.
2. Rural Bank Doing Wonders In Satara District Maharashtra
Mann DeshiMahila Bank was started by Chetna Gala Sinha in 1997 at a small village called Mhaswad in Maharashtra. The village belongs to Satara district, an area which is seriously prone to drought cases and is heavily dependent on Agriculture.
In such a heavily resource depleted area, work done by Mrs Sinha should be highly admired as she set up a Radio station for the unemployed women of the village apart from starting her co-operative bank (Mann DeshiMahila Bank) which helped many women to start their own Business through the availability of capital.
One woman, Vandana Pise, was given training on financial literacy and, after successfully making her loan payments, turned around her business. She now earns enough to be able to send her children for higher education.
Her other contributions to the village included setting up of cattle camps, check dams construction which helped reduce excessive use of resources in the village giving the villagers an idea on how to manage their resources.
What ideas can you think of to help women in rural India create financial independence for themselves?
3. Become a Freelance Writer And Blogger
With the arrival of internet income through digital publishing, content creation and blogging have become the next hot arena of demand for businesses.
This has given many budding freelance writers an avenue to showcase their talent and mastery over the English language.
Blogging can be a huge business opportunity as bloggers can sell their content writing skills to big business houses who want to promote their products and services through their own blogs.
There are plenty of self-made celebrity writers earning huge bucks so as to be able to start their own businesses.
4. Start Your Own Patiserrie Or Chocolatier Business
Cooking is a very handy skill that many housewives can take advantage of as many Indian men still don’t know how to cook. They can go a step further and start their own pastry business or chocolate making.
This is quite popular in big cities like Delhi or Mumbai or Los Angeles, London etc. as in such places the population consists of different communities.
With different cultures come different requirements – a theory which bred the UK food Industry quite famous for chicken curry.
Pro Tip: Start small and target locality wise. Work on promoting your work in a particular locality. Once the word goes around, people start coming then start expanding your Business.
It is possible to be flexible as you can request your prospective customers to place their order in advance (say 3 weeks before) so that you can have ample time to do your work as well as stealthily expand your production area.
5. Home Tutoring And Online Education
Home tutoring is definitely the queen of all home businesses for Indian women. There is every possibility that you will come across private tutors in every city who teach students in a rented place.
Women have traditionally been known to be good teachers so it gives an opportunity for highly-qualified women to start coaching classes at their own place or in a rented place for highly popular and evergreen courses like CA, CS, CMA, IIT-JEE, Medical etc.
Want to learn how to attract more students to your business every month without wasting money on ads? Check out the Free Marketing for Tutors guide so you can increase your income from tutoring.
6. Sew Your Way To Success
Sewing is a traditional art carried on by generations. Mostly done by women, there are numerous techniques in embroidery sciences which are not much known about in the world. For example, TODA is one such embroidery style quite famous in the Nilgiris of Tamil Nadu.
Taking inspiration from a very famous Hindi film, women can start a co-operative society of stitching experts so as to be able to attract contracts for work in different countries.
A similar model has been followed in Kullu-Manali where there are several Government-recognised weaver associations employing thousands of winter-clothes makers who are experts in the Kullu style of embroidery as well as the weaving of shawls.
7. Cook Your Way To Riches
As I said cooking is a very handy skill to start a Business with. A recent example I can give is from our trip to Darjeeling where we came across a local Bengali Restaurant providing home-made quality lunch at Rs. 100 per plate.
The restaurant has been functioning since the 1950s with interiors replaced with concrete from wood back in the day. It has been able to provide a decent income to its owners who are able to live peacefully and send their kids to school.
Pro Tip: Follow economies of scale and maintain pricing per plate.
Another home business for ladies who love to cook is to start a YouTube recipe channel and earn money from ad revenue or collaborations and sponsorships with advertisers.
8. Start Your Own Interior Design Firm
Interior Design is a very flexible arena where not only trained but also untrained people can start consulting in. You can take a page out of Suzanne Khan’s book start your own interior design consultancy firm.
With the change in design norms amongst the corporate class, this is an opportunity for artistic women to start an enterprise in which they can express their creativity and passion.
The only problem is getting clients for which you would need to create a brand and promote your work heavily in order to make your enterprise profitable in the long run.
Pro Tip: Zero compromise on the quality of products sold to design offices or homes. Customers look for a first-class finishing touch.
9. Start Your Own App Development Firm
With the world going digital and focus on women safety being high in consideration across the world, it is the right time for starting an all-female app.
You could focus on developing apps devoted to women safety on the lines of the Vodafone “Sakhi” app which can help many women stay in contact with their family or law enforcement for their safety.
With India’s Smart Cities initiative currently undertaken, there is no better time than the present for starting a small business in the field of software development.
10. Start Your Own Female Taxi-Aggregator Service
With taxi-related crime constantly occurring in metro cities, this is a chance for starting an all-female taxi business which can cater to the transport needs of women working in late night in offices across the country.
It can be a good opportunity for college students who are outstation but know how to drive to earn some money for their college fees (Deepika Padukone in Bachna Ae Haseeno anyone?)
The cost of living is constantly increasing and raising a family is a mandatory norm for many people belonging to rural areas or cities and towns outside the metro areas.
Today it is important to train Indian women or at least assist them in setting up their own small business or home business.
Traditionally, women are more likely to spend time with their kids at home. So it is beneficial for the kids to learn something about entrepreneurship from their parents.
Innovation and creativity can help bloom ideas turn into reality which can earn money for the family. This list of small business ideas for housewives and home-based business ideas for moms can help create financial independence for Indian women.
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