Rural India is the backbone of our economy. They provide one of the richest resources – human resources. Apart from agriculture, which serves as the main source of income, villagers engage themselves in various other enterprises. Such businesses are usually in line with MSMEs Sector. The cottage industry plays an important role in providing employment to most of rural India.
With the ‘Start-up India’ movement and ‘Make in India’ call, villagers have been able to establish more profit-making enterprises to support their livelihood. Villages are also able to provide businesses with land resources and water resources that are necessary to sustain a business and make you rich.
In recent times, big corporations and many of their employees are showing interest in setting up roots in a rural setting and living in harmony with nature. If you too are looking to set up an enterprise in a village setting, what kind of business do you think will be profitable? Here is a small list to get you started;
- Tea Point or a Food Joint
Who doesn’t love a hot cup of tea; and a few banana fritters to go along with it is absolute snack heaven. Villagers may be conservative spenders, but they too don’t mind spending a few bucks for some tasty evening time snacks. A tea shop is a great business idea to start with. You can then slowly bring in a few simple snack items like fritters (bhajia), samosas, pakoras, and if you get a good cook, some jalebis. This may not seem much, but believe me, a tea point along with a snack joint has huge money-making potential.
- Internet Café
Though smartphones have reached the nook and corner of the country, people do seek internet cafes for other needs like printouts or online application submissions. So an internet café in a village is a good enterprise. You can have a printer to help them get printouts, a Xerox machine to make some photocopies, and add in some personal services like helping them with form filling and application submission; Boom! You have the most potential business. With everything going digital, this will be a niche set up in villages.
- Stationery & Toy Shop
Everything might go digital, but school kids are always going to need notebooks, pencils and erasers. Those items will take at least a few decades to go obsolete. Bring in some fancy pencils and colourful erasers and you have a profit-making business in no time. There are so many attractive stationery items in the market designed for school kids. You can also include some simple toys and gift items in your stock to increase business.
- Electronics & Mobile Repair Shop
Telecommunications has reached every household in the country. Everybody owns a mobile phone and various other electronic devices; laptops, desktops, printers, modems, wi-fi routers, etcThese machines are bound to malfunction at some point. So, if there is a person who can repair these, villagers will definitely make use of their services. You can do a certificate course on mobile repairs and electronic device repairs and set up shop. If you are good at what you do, you will get enough patronage with just word of mouth advertising.
- Flour Mill
Villages have enough raw materials for flours and it makes sense for them to grind their own flours instead of buying the packed ones. A flour mill is an important service regularly sought after in villages whose cuisine includes a lot of dishes prepared with these healthy flours. The initial investment to purchase the grinding machine might be a bit high but you do get cheap bank loans for that. Once you have established yourself with good service, the money will just keep coming.
- Oil Mill
Another service as popular as a flour mill is the oil mill. Groundnut, mustard, and sesame seeds are regularly ground to produce cold-pressed oils for household needs. You can monetise on that. You can get bank loans to set up an oil mill too.
Science and technology might have improved a lot but human health is still faced with various ailments. Especially in rural areas, where medical care has still not overtly developed, pharmacies play an important role in providing basic health care to the residents. A pharmacy needs considerable investment, to begin with, but once established, it can pretty much look after its own maintenance and upkeep.
- Retail Store
Villages don’t have supermarkets or malls. The local retail store is their go-to place for most of their daily and monthly needs. You can start with a grocery store and slowly expand it to sell other household items like plastics and stainless steel. You can also think of clothes and footwear, which are common purchase items on their monthly budget list. It may need considerable investment and labour, but the profit is higher compared to other businesses.
- Poultry Farm
Poultry farming can be begun on a modest scale and subsequently scaled up to include cattle. It’s one of the best business ideas to run in a village because it involves very little money and effort. This is yet another profitable small business as it requires lesser capital, land, or labour. Many banks and NBFCs provide small business loans to start a poultry farming business. Poultry products also have a never-ending demand, in both urban and rural locations, which will increase your profits in this business.
- Pearl Farming
Sea pearls are both costly and difficult to cultivate. FreshWater Pearl farming, on the other hand, is becoming more accessible to rural communities, with the opportunity of harvesting pearls even from a small pond, with investments of just a few thousand rupees. There are a number of government-approved training centres that may assist you in starting this business and providing you with the necessary information and guidance. Banks and non-bank financial institutions (NBFCs) are also offering loans to assist you with your business formation.
- Dairy Supply
One of the most obvious businesses to establish in a hamlet is dairy supply. Cow’s milk is a mainstay in rural communities, and you could capitalise on this lucrative business opportunity. You can also source milk from people in your area and sell it to dairy companies in the cities. Banks and NBFCs can provide the initial funding at cheaper interest rates and with more flexible repayment terms. In the long run, this small-scale village enterprise can be very profitable.
- Drinking Water Supplier
Not many villages in India are fed by rivers or freshwater ponds. As a result, safe drinking water is a requirement that must be provided to every home. Due to a lack of infrastructure or water treatment plants, many households are without this. Freshwater from tube wells or hand pumps can be stored in huge cans and then delivered to villagers’ doorsteps in vehicles. RO water purification plants have recently been set up in communities to provide drinking water to village residents. However, if you can transport this water to their door, you may have a profitable business.
Villages have a lot of potential business ideas for an entrepreneurial mind. The government has also introduced a lot of schemes to boost SMEs in rural areas to improve employment opportunities for villagers. Banks and NBFCs have a lot of loan schemes that cater particularly to the MSME sector in villages. If you have the right business plan and an enterprising eye, you are sure to become rich with any one of the business ideas given above.
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