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5 Low-Cost Business Ideas You Can Start in 2019

Quickly launch any of these inexpensive but potentially profitable businesses in the new year.

Starting a new business can be an immensely challenging endeavor. There are lots of pitfalls to look out for. You will have to, often times, make significant upfront investments with your time and money, in hopes of building a profitable business one day.

Although, when asked, most people will tell you that they have plans to, at some point, start their own business, you know, "be their own boss," statistics suggest that most never do. Start their own business, that is.

And among those who actually do take that big step to launch their own company, most often fail in less than 5 years after launch. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that about 20 percent of all small businesses fail in the first year of operation.

About 50 percent fail by the fifth year. On the bright side, the same data also suggests that 80 percent of small businesses with employees survive the first year in business.

Also, well-funded businesses with experienced entrepreneurs have higher survival rates. There are certain factors that can greatly improve your success rate in business. High on that list is the type of business you choose.

Here are 5 Low-cost business ideas to start in 2019.

Enhanced Virtual Assistant

The idea or concept of Virtual Assistants (VA) is not a new one. Being a VA or starting your own VA agency where you match Virtual Assistants with entrepreneurs who need them and collect a finder's fee is a pretty mature industry. Although, in 2019, with the whole "sharing economy" and all, you can introduce some new services that will set you apart from the competition.

You can make your services less virtual and perhaps provide bespoke transportation needs to busy entrepreneurs with your own exclusive ride-sharing app made for only a handful of clients. Think of some new ways to provide "Enhanced" services.

Social Media Analyst

Here you can bring some clarity to the convoluted world of social media and social media marketing to an older business audience. You can create a platform through which older mom-and-pop business owners can come to get actionable advice on how to position their businesses to win in the new digital age. Help less tech-savvy businesses set up Facebook Ad campaigns, Automated email marketing strategies, etc.

Invest in your community

With the help of technology, these days, anyone can have a huge impact with very little investment. If you have a background in business or accounting, and you know a handful of like-minded friends who would be interested in investing in your community, you can bring these associates, plus your background and help provide funding and advice to local businesses that are struggling to make it.

Find small businesses in your neighborhood, talk to the owners to see if they would like to have some cash and expertise backing them up. It helps to find friends with backgrounds in accounting, insurance, corporate law, etc. To not only serve as investors but also as a board of advisers to small businesses in your community.

Podcasting equipment and services

As Podcasts and Podcasting become even more popular and mainstream, I feel there is still potential in creating profitable businesses around this type of media. You do not have to create Podcasts yourself to capitalize on the popularity of this phenomenon. If you have some extra space, perhaps an empty garage, and a few extra bucks, you can setup up a podcasting studio with high-quality Podcasting equipment, which you can rent out to local Podcasters for a small fee.

Once you have built a decent roster of Podcasters, you can hire a few independent salespeople to go out into the community and find businesses that are willing to advertise on the various shows you will have access to and share ad revenues with the Podcasters.

Meal Delivery For Low-income Families

2019 could be the year that you launch your very own food delivery business. Sure, there are a bunch of meal delivery options out there but check this out, it would cost, on average, $59.94 per week for a family of two to order six meals from Blue Apron. Meanwhile, according to Feeding America, a non-profit that works to solve the food insecurity problem in America, 40 million people live in a food insecure household (1 in 8). This is the equivalent of the population of Canada.

Certain populations had food insecurity rates higher than the national average, including individuals living alone, Hispanic and Black non-Hispanic households, and households with an income below 185% of the poverty threshold (only $46,435 for a family of 4).

You can build a profitable business by helping deliver low-cost food supplies, canned goods, prepped meals, to the neediest Americans, who typically do not have a reliable source of transportation to make it to the grocery store even when they have the money to do so. You can buy food in bulk, take donations of money and canned foods to help get started.

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