Starting a business today is no longer a complicated and lengthy process, especially when you have a good educational background. The same applies if you have taken some courses which are sought after on the digital market. Moreover, governments around the world have realised the importance of small companies for their economies, so they encourage start-ups.
What you need to consider is giving a legal form to your business, such as the limited liability company, or GmbH, if you plan on setting it up in developed European countries like Germany, Austria or Switzerland.
Given the facts above, you must only choose the type of business you want to open based on your budget and skills. Even if these factors are very important and you are considering the budget for starting the company, the good news is that you can set up several types of businesses with a very low budget. Below are five of the most useful low-cost business ideas you can open in any country.
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1. Start an IT company
Information technology, or IT, the best performing and most powerful industry in the world at the moment is one of the best ideas for setting up a low-cost business. You will only need a computer and your mind to create software or to offer services in this industry. And the number of services you can offer are unlimited. One of the countries known for the large number of IT companies and where giants in this industry operate is Ireland. Starting a small business in Ireland’s information technology sector will also bring you several tax breaks from the authorities.
From app, graphic and web development to offering cyber security advisory services, you can open several types of businesses which imply almost no cost at all.
2. Open a digital marketing agency
This can seem complicated and costly, but the truth is you only need a computer and some knowledge about social media and online marketing in order to start this type of business. This a one-man type of business which can be completed from anywhere, even from home, and offered to people in the other corner of the world. It all depends on how you promote yourself.
If you plan on taking someone on board, you can choose one of the Asian countries with a cheap labor force. For example, Thailand is home to many small businesses and the people here are quite educated, therefore you can use both the expertise and the skills.
3. Set up a translating business
Translating is an evergreen business idea, because people will always need such services. So, if you know any sought language, or even better: if you live in a country like Germany which is one of the most important business centres in Europe, therefore attracts many foreign investors who need translating services, go for it. The business start-up costs are some of the lowest for this type of venture. As a tip, you can use the German GmbH, limited liability company in translation, in order to take advantage of tax breaks.
4. Become a personal/virtual assistant
The internet can be explored in many ways and a lot of people offer their services here. Even if becoming a virtual assistant seems more like a job, it can, in fact, be a business because you can have more than one client and work from home, if you want. This way, you can offer specialised services or simply complete tasks given by the client with no costs.
5. Transform your passion into a business
This is perhaps the best low-cost business idea because you don’t need too much money to transform a passion into a business. Writing, blogging, photography, costs and even bookkeeping can be great business ideas which can be explored to the maximum at very low costs.
If you are planning on starting a small business, you can set it up in any country and then expand around it. All you need is a good idea. You can use the ones above or simply make your own plan and adapt it to the market you’ll be operating on.
Brits dream up business ideas from their bed
Britons are most likely to be struck by their best ‘lightbulb moment’ business ideas when in bed, research finds.
A third (32 per cent) of the nation’s budding entrepreneurs name their bed as the most inspiring place to dream up new business ideas, followed by the great outdoors (19 per cent).
Other locations include when travelling (19 per cent) and when having a cup of tea of coffee (19 per cent), with the shower or bath (14 per cent) coming third, according to a study by Barclays Business.
Some 10.9 million Brits (21 per cent) say they have had an idea to start the ‘next big thing’ but didn’t pursue it, while over half (54 per cent) say they saw someone else launch the same idea at a later stage.
Those that ‘missed out’ estimate their idea could have made them £62,000 richer (on average) – a collective total of £265 billion – if they had launched their idea themselves.
A higher proportion of 18-34 year olds (33 per cent) say they have had an inspirational business idea but didn’t pursue it, when compared to a lower UK average of 21 per cent, as well as 25 per cent of men and 18 per cent of women.
Funding is named as the top reason why business ideas are not pursued, with over half (51 per cent) of those polled saying insufficient funds was a major factor in them not pursuing their ideas.
Not knowing where to start (42 per cent) is the second biggest factor, followed by lack of confidence (38 per cent) and not having the right kind of knowledge (34 per cent). Not having access to the right tools and equipment (20 per cent), along with lack of space (15 per cent), are other reasons given.
The need for more mentoring also emerged as an important factor for a quarter (25 per cent) of future entrepreneurs; the UK’s business dreamers say they would need four hours a week on average with a mentor to help them turn their ideas into reality.
Richard Heggie, head of high growth and entrepreneurs at Barclays says that every great entrepreneur starts with their ‘Eureka moment’ and the poll shows the UK is a nation of inspired thinkers.
‘It’s essential that the industry does all it can to harness and encourage this creativity. Not having access to lending, or to the right tools, advice and guidance simply shouldn’t be a barrier holding back the UK’s future disrupters and pioneers,’ he adds.