Here are the 22 best business ideas for entrepreneurs who want to be successful and profitable in Singapore.
The emergence of new technologies, shifts in customer demands, and the COVID-19 pandemic have revolutionised the way we do business. These factors have led to disruption in various industries, paving the way for emerging entrepreneurial trends. As a result, you have to stay up to date on what is happening in the world of business to be successful.
If you are wondering what business to start in Singapore, stay with us. We have compiled a list of the best businesses to start in Singapore. This article will help you make better decisions and make your entrepreneurial journey easier. It provides you with an analysis of the best business ideas to start in Singapore.
The best business ideas to start in Singapore
Wondering what kind of small business you can start in Singapore? We have grouped the business ideas into the following categories:
- Work-from-home businesses
- Online business opportunities
- Low-investment business ideas
- Unique business opportunities
- Most profitable small business ideas
We’ll look at how to get started and the requirements for each of these business ideas.
Working from home is now accepted globally due to advancements in technology and widespread telecommuting during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some businesses you can run from your home:
1. Consulting services
Singapore is known for its low corporate tax, making it a very popular business hub. Many global firms have set up their offices in the country, creating an opportunity for consultants. As a Singapore citizen, you can help global firms in the following ways:
- Planning and strategy
Since you understand the dynamics of the country, set up a consulting firm to help global firms plan and strategise. The strategies will help them achieve their key performance indicators.
- Project management
As a consultant, you will help organisations execute projects and change management.
- Outsourcing support
Global organisations that have set up shop will require consultants to help with IT services, Human Resources and management.
- Fund management
Investors looking to grow their portfolios require guidance on the best funds. Start your consulting business by providing information on the portfolio with the best return.
- Grant Consulting
Grant consulting involves evaluating a project, writing the grant application, and submitting it.
You can offer a broad array of consulting services in Singapore. The good thing is you can work from the comfort of your home. To start the consulting business, follow the steps below:
- Choose whether you want to start a limited company or a sole proprietorship.
- Reserve the company name and submit the relevant documents.
- Fulfil your taxation obligations.
2. Translation services
Singapore is a centre for trade, and it’s perfect for translation services. With the high number of global businesses, you will find a market for your translation services. A translator in Singapore can make an average monthly income of S$6,880, depending on the job's complexity.
Register a sole proprietor business if you would like to start a translation business. Translation business does not require any certification. However, it’s best to have the certificates showing your knowledge in multiple languages, as it gives your clients the confidence to trust in your work.
3. Video editing
If you are creative and detail-oriented, consider setting up a video editing business. Companies use video to tell their brand story and market their products. As a result, videos have become an important marketing component for every business.
You will need video software skills, and you can make an average income of S$4,000 per month from the comfort of your home. To start, make an explainer video showing the services you offer and share it on your social media platform.
If you are experienced and have the expertise, you can earn an average income of S$32 to S$52 per hour from your bookkeeping business. With accounting systems online, you can run your bookkeeping business from the comfort of your home. Bookkeeping is a lucrative field in Singapore, and you can charge per transaction, per hour, or a fixed monthly charge.
Here are the steps to follow when starting your bookkeeping business:
- Choose between a limited company, a sole proprietorship, and a partnership. Register your business.
- Invest in cloud software that you will need to run your business. Most cloud softwares have a free trial.
- Seek out online business opportunities.
- Design and offer innovative solutions.
To operate a business from home, you must register for the home office scheme and follow the relevant regulations. According to the scheme, you can use part of your residence as an office. You are allowed to hire one to two non-resident employees.
Online business opportunities
A blogging business involves writing and publishing different media on your website. Blogs are updated frequently, allowing you to interact with the readers. You can make an income on your blog through ad networks, affiliate links, and selling digital products on your blog.
Blogging requires time and effort before it becomes profitable. Here is how to start a blog:
- Choose a name for your blog. Register the blog name and pay for hosting.
- Customise your blog to make it user-friendly.
- Write articles, add photographs, and then publish.
- Create awareness by advertising your blog.
- Make money through ad networks, guest posting, affiliate links, and digital products.
6. Digital marketing
Over 75% of Singaporeans own mobile devices and can access the internet. This makes it increasingly crucial for businesses to develop a digital marketing strategy. Now more than ever, people in Singapore and the world over look for products and services online, making it important for businesses to have an online presence.
As a digital marketer, you can offer content writing, search engine optimisation, and search engine marketing services. You will need to learn the necessary skills and get a digital marketing certification so you can offer the best services. As a digital marketer, you can make up to S$4,500 per month, depending on how much work you handle. Follow the steps below when starting your digital marketing agency:
- Register your business.
- Find your niche and set your business goals.
- Identify your target market.
- Build the team you need.
7. Affiliate marketing
Affiliate marketing involves selling products belonging to another company for a commission. An affiliate marketing business is one of the easiest businesses to start. You identify the product you want to sell or join an affiliate programme and get a commission for every sale you make.
Globally, approximately 81% of companies with an online presence offer affiliate marketing programmes as a way of boosting their sales. To succeed in the affiliate marketing business, follow these steps:
- Identify products that solve a problem for your target market.
- Promote the products through your social media platform or website.
The increased cost of marketing and the pandemic has pushed many business owners into e-commerce. It’s a great way to sell your products locally and internationally. Here is how you can start your e-commerce business:
- Decide on the product you want to sell. Fast-moving consumer goods are generally a good choice. Make sure that the goods you want to sell, cater to your target market.
- Choose a business model that works for you. There are two common models: dropshipping and white label.
Dropshipping involves building a storefront to market the products and communicate with clients. The owner of the products you are selling delivers them to the client.
On the other hand, white-label involves creating a brand and sourcing for products to sell online. Follow the steps below to set up your e-commerce business:
- Incorporate the business. To run an e-commerce business, register a private limited company.
- Choose an e-commerce platform or build your online shop. You can use platforms such as Amazon or build your shop using Shopify or Magento.
- Brand your store.
- Open a business account and connect your platform to the payment systems.
- Take note of reports that you need to submit to the authorities.
9. Social media management
A social media management business is easy to start as you don’t require any capital. Design your social media management packages with appropriate pricing, and start advertising on your platforms. It helps to have a social media management certification to increase confidence and trust.
Low-investment business ideas
Low cost-investment businesses require low to no capital to start. Here we review some of the best low-cost businesses you can begin in Singapore.
10. Pet grooming
You will be surprised at how much pet lovers are willing to pay to keep their pets clean and hygienic. The good thing is that you don’t need any particular qualification when running a pet-grooming business, but it helps to have a certification.
Register your business and choose a business structure that suits your goals. With so many dogs and cat breeds in Singapore, your business will take off in no time. Offer well-priced packages and advertise your services.
11. Debt collection
To start a debt collection agency in Singapore, you need to register with the Credit Collection Association of Singapore (CCAS). You can offer personal or corporate debt recovery. With a large number of businesses operating in Singapore, you are sure to find clients.
- Register your business.
- Register with CCAS.
- Identify your clients and start marketing your services.
The amount of revenue your business makes will depend on the type and number of clients you serve.
12. Graphic design
As the number of online businesses increases, so does the need for them to have slick and polished images. If you know your way around programmes such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, starting a graphic design business may be the way to go.
Graphic design is a low-cost business, and you can charge a significant amount per hour to create awesome graphics. If you have coding ability in addition to graphic design, you will be highly sought after by business owners.
13. Air conditioning services
Singapore enjoys a hot and humid climate, with the temperature going up to 35 degrees Celsius. Naturally, this creates a high demand for air conditioners. To start an air conditioning servicing business, you will need to have a certification and register with the Building and Construction Authority (BCA).
Incorporate your business either as a sole proprietor, partnership or limited company. Companies operating in the air conditioning industry must maintain ISO (International Organisation for Standardisation) standards. After every installation, you have to file a report with the BCA.
Unique business opportunities
14. Create digital products or online courses
Digital products and online courses are some of the most profitable businesses you can run. You create digital products or courses and earn recurring income from them. Begin by creating simple courses, such as tutorials on using applications, languages, or business marketing.
Sell the courses through education platforms or use your website. If you are a creative person, there are endless possibilities in digital products or online courses.
15. Make and sell hand-crafted goods
Do you love hand-crafted items? If so, you can make money by selling the items on sites like Etsy and Amazon. To increase business exposure and profits, advertise and brand your crafted items.
Look out for marketplaces that bring together artisan networks and communities and use them to grow your market.
16. Build an audience and monetise it
You can make money by monetising your following. If you have a large fan base, you can use social media platforms like TikTok to make money. Depending on your audience, you can make money using sponsorship, selling merchandise, and creating in-feed ads.
Every month, the most popular TikTokers and YouTubers can earn thousands of dollars. Study your audience and see how you can develop a business out of it.
17. Sell photographs
You can make money by using your creativity and monetising your skills. Start by looking for a high-quality camera. The good thing is that some phones have a perfect camera that you can use to start. Here is what you should do to make an income out of it:
- Find your photography niche.
- Build a portfolio and integrate e-commerce into it.
- Register your business and incorporate payment systems.
- Sell your photos online and locally.
18. House and pet sitting
As a house and pet sitter, you will take care of someone’s home and pets in their absence. Design a home and pet sitting package and advertise it on your social media platform. You can design a website to help you market your products and get reviews from your clients. That way, they will be confident they are leaving their homes and pets in safe hands.
Most profitable small business ideas
The most profitable small business ideas may require a high start-up capital but will earn you a good income and profit. These are some of the most profitable businesses.
19. Auto repair
Consider starting a mobile auto repair business if you are a skilled mechanic. Some maintenance and repair jobs don't require complex tools. You can offer services such as oil change, fluid refills, battery swaps, and headlight repairs.
Start by analysing what service your target market requires.
20. Food trucks
Food trucks are becoming a big thing in major cities. If you are good at preparing delicacies and have a truck at your disposal, consider starting a food truck business. Depending on how well you market and structure your business, the food truck can help you earn S$2,000 to S$5,000 per month.
To start, register your business, get a trading licence, design your menu, customise the truck, and market your delicacies. Suppose you plan to sell food in the Marina Bay area. In that case, you will need to apply for a Non-Renewable Temporary Occupation Licence from the Singapore Tourism Board. You can refer to its map on possible food truck locations.
21. IT support
Mobile IT support services are in demand as more people embrace working from home. To start this business, you will need certification, experience, and expertise in dealing with the most common IT issues. You can make your business more holistic by selling software and applications.
Like any business, you need to register your IT support business and brand it. Advertise your business far and wide. With advanced technology, you can offer your services both locally and internationally.
22. Marketing copywriter
If you are good with words, a copywriting business will earn you a decent income. At the end of this year, the copywriting industry will be worth more than $400 billion. With so many businesses online, the income you can earn is uncapped.
To start, get a certificate in copywriting, then develop a website to showcase your skills. Incorporate an agency and market your business.
Singapore is a top location for businesses to thrive. There are many opportunities for those aspiring to become entrepreneurs. However, it's essential to analyse and see which business idea is ideal and profitable.
In general, the best business ideas to start in Singapore should have a low start-up cost, be easy to start and allow you to capitalise on the demand.
Start your small business with appropriate financing to ensure that it’s sustainable. We’ve rounded up the best personal loans for your comparison; apply through our website for exclusive offers and welcome gifts!
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