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9 Options For Small Town Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurship goals
Photo by mentatdgt on

Presents a unique challenge for entrepreneurs. Narrow local markets mean error is greater than the centers of higher population. Small towns present great opportunity to form strong bonds with customers. Find out what’s suitable for the town.

Options For Acquiring Business

  1. Start brand business – Open a store or agency that has not existed in the town. 
  2. Take over existing business – opportunity to continue the business. The advantage of buying an existing presence is a shorter customer acquisition time
  3. Introduce a franchise – may meet resistance from residents who see a franchise as the death of a small town. The biggest hurdle for the franchisee is the upfront cost.

Identify Areas To Satisfy Market Needs

Serve Local Market

  • What exists to serve the community?
  • Product/service missing in the community?

Complement Area Businesses

  • offerings that would go along with existing businesses?
  • need for a reliable equipment repair operation?

Selling Local Products Elsewhere

  • If a local business provides desirable products, consider selling those products to larger markets.

Market to Tourists

  • towns that lie on travel corridors or are destination spots that provide opportunities to sell local products, like town-related novelties or local specialties.
  • If the town is a destination point, you may be a need for tour guides or taxi services.

Serve Local Government

  • needs from janitorial services to computer repair to office supplies
  • investigate the needs of the local government to determine if something is lacking or services are being delivered poorly

Provide Expertise To Existing Businesses

  • Business owners often need assistance with accounting, taxes, facility cleaning and other services. Look for a common need and become the local expert.

Final Thoughts

Once the research into existing needs and opportunities is completed, strategy and planning are essential to ensuring that the grand opening is not followed by the resounding thud of an empty store. Finally, as with any business, money management is critical to making sure operations will continue if hard times hit the small town.


Published by Sarah

Hello! I'm a self-employed entrepreneur. I enjoy affiliate marketing and photography in my spare time. I am currently in college for communications in social media and working towards my undergraduate degree in graphic design.

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