Top 14 Rural & Small Town Business Ideas for 2021

Top 14 Rural & Small Town Business Ideas for 2021

small town business ideas

Small business ideas for rural communities those in larger city centers. Rural communities have the advantages of less traffic and the ability to profitably implementing those services available in larger cities but not yet locally.

Another bonus part is small towns have also been seeing a steady increase in the rural town’s population because more people are inclined to live uncluttered and are shifting away from the larger city.

For starters, it is always keen to keep an ear out for those small town’s needs. With those needs comes some creativity which can lead to a profitable business idea. Look around your community and look for those business opportunities. They are always there if you are looking in the right direction.

Just in case you don’t see those opportunities we have your back. Here are a few business ideas that every small-town need for growth. Each opportunity we present will shed light on bringing business to a small town and addressing critical areas of everyday life.

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1. Food and Cuisine

Food and Cuisine
Food and Cuisine

Food is the basic necessity of life. The millennials are more enthusiastic about food and cuisine today than ever before. Because of the fast-paced lives, where home-based meals have become a rarity, the young opt for fast food that challenges their taste buds every day.

Opening up a food joint is one of the best small-town businesses that thrive. Why? Because the produce is local and fresh in rural areas. You can open a farm-to-table restaurant that serves homemade recipes. Besides, you can offer a menu exclusively for the young cohort using fresh local produce (meat, vegetables, fruit, dairy, etc.).

Juice and coffee bars offer a place to hang out for everyone. Serving ice cream on weekends is always a treat for everyone. Diner, food truck, donut shop, bakery, catering, organic food supplier are some of the best businesses to start in a rural area.

The ideas are unlimited if you tap into the food industry. Just make sure to know what is the specialty of the town you are moving in. Turn it into the best business to open in a small town.

This will not enable you to address small-town development ideas and cater to small-town job ideas.

Related: How to Choosing a Business Name

2. Alternative Health Care and Health Care Providers

Alternative Health Care and Health Care Providers
Health Care Providers

There is always an opportunity for licensed practitioners. Healthcare facilities are what every small town needs; a chiropractor, a dentist, optometrist, a general physician’s clinic, etc.

If you find opening a clinic is expensive, you can always partner up with another practitioner or provide services from a home-based location.

The hottest career opportunities in the health care industry have been midwifery for women.

Perhaps your skill may be stronger in the naturopathic areas. With those have knowledge as a nutritionist or dietitian they can never be overlooked. It is a keyways to prevent lifestyle diseases like diabetes and heart diseases.

 These are some examples of businesses that do well in small towns.

3. Hair, Esthetics, and Spas

Hair Esthetics and Spas
Hair Esthetics and Spas

This area of service is highly profitable as a small-town business. Personal care has always been an essential need all Canadian citizens. Look for opportunities to open a salon or a spa. This is one of the best small-town businesses to start, especially for women. A hair salon or barbershop is businesses every small town needs.

One of the small scale business ideas for women can be started from home if you have the expertise. Being a personal trainer can be a unique business idea for small towns. Medi-spas and massage centers are also one of the top contenders for rural communities. A nail salon and aromatherapy centers can be started alongside a spa or your home, making them one of the profitable businesses for small towns requiring low investments.

 Another part-time business ideas with low investment are to start a fitness class in your home. Providing individual training at a gym or in-home training, conducting boot camps or delivering online session; anything can be done.

4. Retail Services

Retail services
Retail services

The $3.3 trillion retail industry is projected to surpass $5 trillion by the end of 2020, making it one of the lucrative rural business ideas. A clothing store can cater to all ages. A cosmetic store focuses on beauty for women or those in need of facial care. The list goes on, housing décor, lighting décor, local thrift and jewelry store, to the shoe and antique shop.

5. Pet Service Provider and Suppliers

Pet Service Provider and Suppliers
Pet Service Provider and Suppliers

Everyone loves their fur babies, or critters and still requires products and services for these delicate family members. Most times, it is very hard to find products locally to services this market in smaller communities.

This would make it very ideal and a lavish business in a rural small town. Services and supplies can range from pet grooming, pet foods and accessories, etc., is a good side business idea for men (or women keen on keeping animals).

If you have the knack, you can become a pet groomer or a trainer yourself. For rural areas close to urban settings, setting up a dog boarding or kennels is also profitable. A well-furnished dog kennel company with a good reputation charges about $25 to $100 per night for a dog. The city-dwellers can spend that amount if they know their dog will be looked after well in healthy outdoors.

Side note, the profits will always be good during any economic state because fur babies, or critters will always require products and services.

6. Child and Home Care Services

Child and Home Care Services
Child and Home Care Services

Given the community you current reside in, there will either be a strong demand for child or elderly care services.

A daycare is a hand-off business venture that requires little investment. As more people work outdoors, a daycare center has the potential to grow with little effort.

Similarly, the elderly care industry is also one of the self-sufficient business ideas.

Then every small rural town has its share of after-school care and tutoring. With competition growing for college admissions and private tuition rates soaring, if you have the skills and knowledge, providing tuition at fair rates would put you in the lead.

7. Music or Recreational Activities

Music or Recreational Activities
Music or Recreational Activities

Talking of skills, if you have a knack for instrument playing, catering music lessons is unique niche business ideas.

Suppose there is one thing lacking in small towns and rural areas that is good family entertainment sources. Setting up a laser tag is good fun for all ages. Just have to consider the cost of equipment needed to start this venture.

Think of some small acreage business ideas like setting up few trampolines of different size. No need to spend heavy on maintenance; the business can be set up in your backyard. If you are thinking big, then a franchise for a trampoline park is also one of the best business ideas for small towns.

8. Agriculture


Fresh air, a vast expanse of farmlands, rolling hills and acres of lush foliage; the rural ambiance is unbeatable, and it attracts its share of tourists. Catering to this lot can earn you profits even if you are thinking of small scale business ideas.

Corn maze, cut-your-own-pumpkin, hayrides, etc., are some of the outdoor activities the city dwellers would craze for. Arranging field trips for school children with time spending with farm animals is a satisfying experience for everyone.

Growing fruits and vegetables the organic way is one of the small agricultural business ideas with many potentials. You do not need acres of land for it. Vertical containers and raised beds are the new norms in agriculture.

You can grow herbs and spices in your background, dry the harvest at home, pack and sell them in the local farmer’s market.

A good side business for women living in rural areas is mushroom farming. Being a florist is also a profitable hobby when it comes to business ideas for small towns.

Small home business opportunities also include jam and juice production that can be sold in the local market.

Owning livestock is excellent as a small town business idea, but if you are a newbie living in a rural area, that can be a headache. Instead, you can always opt for manufacturing feed for livestock.

The best business to start in a small town is raising a nursery for the ones who have green thumbs. Caring for plants is a chore that improves cerebral performance at all ages, and there is always something to do for everyone in a garden. Nothing can beat than taking profits out of your garden.

If you have the investment, start a poultry, fish, dairy or rabbit farm. Investing in bee farming, harvesting honey and making beeswax is a one-stop solution for agriculture retail store ideas for small towns.

A B2B small business idea for men is procuring and delivering pesticides and weed killers to local farmers at their doorstep.

Another of the best small-town businesses is to start a rental company if you have the funds to purchase farming or agriculture equipment. Your business would be to rent or lease out equipment to farmers. Tractor business ideas are one of the profitable deals.

Recommended: Best Business Ideas for Stay at Home Moms

9. Internet services

A steady and patent internet service is a household necessity these days. Though advancements are seen, there still exist dead zones devoid of good internet service. One of the best community business ideas can be started as a franchise with internet companies working adjacent to your town. This specific retail business idea for small towns caters to ordinary community members and provides a platform for others who want to start their online businesses. A great way to become a small-town entrepreneur!!

10. Bread and Basket

Owning your farm or a family home in a small town or rural area can be converted into the best business idea. This is great for individuals living a post-retirement life. It would create job opportunities for the locals and keep one socially busy as well.

11. Real estate agency

A real estate agency works in the favor of locals of a rural area. If you have shifted from an urban locale, you would know that it is a business needed in small towns. In small towns, people are permanently relocating. So why not go for real estate as it serves as one of the best part-time business to start in rural areas.

12. A maintenance service company

If you are thinking to integrate small-town job ideas at one place, setting up a maintenance service company is the solution. You could recruit the locals at one platform and offer services to the community at their doorstep. This can lead to a merger of many home maintenance services like plumber, electrician, carpenter, lawn-care, painter, pest-control service, etc.

13. Digital marketing services

Having skills in digital marketing and shifted to a small town? What is an excellent small business to open? Set up a digital marketing service provider company. The rural areas have their own set of skills and products. You can help the locals get their creations recognized on a large scale by setting up their online presence. This would help them reach out to urban markets.

Once established, digital marketing is an ongoing task, and if you are the expert, they will go nowhere else. Be their virtual assistant, freelance for local products, provide SEO services, be their social media manager, drop-ship their products, cater for their copyrights or design their websites; there is no shortage of requirements.

Providing digital solutions is one of the business ideas for a small town that could work for you.

14. Horse walking service

Horse walking may seem like a trivial job, but it is of great use to the rural dwellers. Some of the farm owners may have many jobs at their hands. Horse walking may be overlooked in such settings, and they are always happy to see their four-legged move and exercise.

Providing the services at a low cost would enable you to skill your farming crafts as well by observation. You never know when a profitable horse business idea may spring, and you can go solo.

About Coreina Hubert

Coreina Hubert is the founder and CEO of CorePro8, a program that guides business owners step-by-step through the process of registering or incorporating their business. Previously, Coreina worked as an accountant at her company, Book-it Bookkeeping Inc.

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