Drawing from years of experience working with small-town businesses and rural communities, I understand the unique challenges and opportunities that come with launching a venture in less populated areas.
That’s why I’ve put together a list of 69 small town business ideas for rural areas just for you!
These businesses are perfect for spread-out communities with a smaller population.
So, whether you’re just starting out or you’re looking for something new, these ideas will help get you started! They have certainly helped me.
Table Of Contents
- Quick Summary
- 1. Build Affiliate Websites ($2000/Month)
- 2. Become A Hosting Reseller ($300/Month)
- 3. Small Business Website Creation ($20/Hour)
- 4. Virtual Assistant (VA) Services ($2500/Month)
- 5. Freelance Writer ($0.05/Word)
- 6. Local YouTuber ($3 -$5/1,000 Views)
- 7. Rural Podcaster ($0.05/Download)
- 8. Online Advertising Agency ($500-$2000/Month)
- 9. Graphic Design Services ($20/Hour)
- 10. Sell T-shirt Designs Online ($1-$5/Shirt)
- 11. Social Media Manager ($21/Hour)
- 12. Woodworking ($18/Hour)
- 13. Flip Sneakers (30%-50% Profit)
- 14. Open A Remote Office Space ($4/Square Foot)
- 15. Do Surveys Online ($1/Survey)
- 16. Resell Tickets ($2000/Month)
- 17. Furniture Restoration ($22/Hour)
- 18. Hauling/Large Truck Rental ($50/Day)
- 19. Firewood Delivery ($200/Cord)
- 20. Sell Stock Photography/Videos ($0.02/Month Per Image Or Video)
- 21. Off-The-Grid Power Installation ($23/Hour)
- 22. Snow Removal ($24/Hour)
- 23. Rural Ride Sharing ($0.15/Minute)
- 24. Cabin Or Long-Term Camp Construction ($100/Day)
- 25. Teach Courses Online ($25/Hour)
- 26. Revitalization Support Efforts ($13/Hour)
- 27. Gym ($63/Square Feet)
- 28. Storage Units ($40/Month)
- 29. Antique Store ($50/Day)
- 30. Greenhouse/Nursery ($35/Day)
- 31. Local Campsites ($20/Day)
- 32. Bed & Breakfast ($70/Night)
- 33. Animal Training ($15/Hour)
- 34. Junk Hauling ($58/Hour)
- 35. Land Rental ($850/Month)
- 36. Second Hand Store ($700/Month)
- 37. Specialty Restaurant Or Tavern ($1200/Month)
- 38. Food Truck ($1000/Month)
- 39. Landscaping Business ($16/Hour)
- 40. Car Wash ($3000/Month)
- 41. Cleaning Services ($30/Hour)
- 42. Home Upkeep ($25/Hour)
- 43. Arcade ($1000/Month Per Game)
- 44. Bowling Alley ($3,000/Lane Per Month)
- 45. Massage/Chiropractic Practice ($21/Hour)
- 46. Engine Repair ($14/Hour)
- 47. Christmas Tree Farm ($9,000/Acre)
- 48. Local Tour Guide ($10/Hour)
- 49. Public Notary ($1,000/Month)
- 50. Plumber/HVAC Services ($23/Hour)
- 51. Electrician ($25/Hour)
- 52. Property Sale Prepping ($15,000/Property)
- 53. Sell Handicrafts ($1-$20/Piece)
- 54. Rural Infrastructure Development ($100,000-$500,000/Project)
- 55. Home Watching Services ($25-$50/Day)
- 56. Gas Station/Convenience Store ($0.15/Gallon)
- 57. Tech Support Service Provider ($30/Hour)
- 58. Organic Food Delivery Service ($25-$50/Delivery)
- 59. Personal Shopper ($11/Hour)
- 60. Grocery Store (2%/Product)
- 61. Specialty Gourmet Foods ($20-$40/Product)
- 62. Florists ($1500/Month)
- 63. Card & Gift Shop ($2/Card)
- 64. Main Street Barber Shop ($25/Haircut)
- 65. Flour Mill (20%/Sack Of Flour)
- 66. Poultry Farm Business ($25000)
- 67. Food Processing Business
- 68. Beekeeping ($600/Hive)
- 69. Provision Store ($500/Month)
- So, What Are the Best Small Town Business Ideas for Rural Areas You Can Implement Right Now?
- The best small business idea for rural areas is one that can meet the specific needs and demands of the local community. To find such an idea, it’s important to look around and understand the unique characteristics and requirements of your area.
- Online businesses, such as affiliate websites, are the highest rewarding small businesses for rural areas, especially when considering how little resources they need.
- Other viable small business ideas for rural areas include agriculture-based businesses, local tourism, and service-based businesses like repair services, which can thrive due to the limited competition and specific needs of rural communities.
1. Build Affiliate Websites ($2000/Month)
Affiliate websites are a great way to make money online. You can build a website around just about any topic, and then promote products and services that are related to that topic.
For example, if you’re passionate about gardening, you could build a website about gardening tips and tricks. Then, you could promote products like garden tools or greenhouses.
We know that while affiliate marketing can be a very lucrative business, it can be a bit tricky to get started.
That’s why we created a step-by-step guide on how to build a successful affiliate website that makes $2000/month.
Click here to check it out!
2. Become A Hosting Reseller ($300/Month)
Reseller hosting is a type of web hosting that allows you to sell space on a server that you rent from a larger company.
It’s similar to buying wholesale products from a company and then selling them at retail prices.
As a hosting reseller, you would be responsible for helping your clients set up their websites and providing support as needed. No overhead or inventory is required, and you can do it anywhere!
3. Small Business Website Creation ($20/Hour)
If you have a web design or development background, you can offer your services to local businesses that need a website but don’t have the time or resources to create one themselves.
Building small business websites is also a good idea because you can learn all you need to know about building websites for free using resources like YouTube and Google.
4. Virtual Assistant (VA) Services ($2500/Month)
Virtual assistants provide administrative and clerical support to clients from remote locations.
As a VA, you could be responsible for tasks like scheduling appointments, managing social media accounts, or handling customer inquiries.
5. Freelance Writer ($0.05/Word)
If you have a knack for writing, you could become a freelance writer!
There are many businesses and individuals who need content but don’t have the time to write it themselves.
As a freelance writer, you could be responsible for creating blog posts, eBooks, white papers, or even website content.
6. Local YouTuber ($3 -$5/1,000 Views)
Do you enjoy being in front of the camera? If so, why not start your own YouTube channel!
You could create videos about anything that interests you – from product reviews to vlogs to DIY tutorials.
As a local, you have an advantage because you can offer a unique perspective that viewers from other areas might not be able to provide.
And, if you build up a large enough following, you could start earning money from ads or sponsorships.
7. Rural Podcaster ($0.05/Download)
Podcasting has been on the rise in recent years, and it’s a great way to make money in rural communities!
People enjoy listening to podcasts because they can do it while they’re driving, working out, or doing other activities.
You could start a podcast and talk about anything that interests you. For example, you could talk about farming tips, local news, or even interview interesting people from your area.
8. Online Advertising Agency ($500-$2000/Month)
If you’re good with marketing and advertising, you could start your own online advertising agency! As an agency, you would be responsible for helping businesses create and implement effective online advertising campaigns.
If you decide to go this route you should niche down by specializing in either search engine optimization, pay-per-click marketing, or social media marketing. You can also niche down even further by specializing in an industry such as local plumbers or dentists.
This gives you a lot of opportunities to find customers and different marketing angles.
9. Graphic Design Services ($20/Hour)
If you have a background in graphic design, you can offer your services to local businesses that need help with creating logos, marketing materials, or even website designs.
You can also work as a freelancer and create designs for individuals or businesses that need them.
10. Sell T-shirt Designs Online ($1-$5/Shirt)
Do you enjoy designing clothes? If so, you could start selling your T-shirt designs online!
There are many websites that allow you to upload your designs and sell them on a variety of products, like T-shirts, mugs, and phone cases.
You can even take it up a notch and start your own T-shirt company!
Overall, this is a great way to make money if you’re creative and have a flair for fashion.
11. Social Media Manager ($21/Hour)
Social media has been a big part of our lives for many years now, and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
As a social media manager, you would create and implement effective social media campaigns to promote a business or individual.
12. Woodworking ($18/Hour)
If you have a knack for woodworking, you could start your own woodworking business!
You could create and sell wooden furniture, like tables, chairs, or even beds. You could also create and sell smaller wooden items, like picture frames or jewelry boxes.
13. Flip Sneakers (30%-50% Profit)
Yes, you can actually make money by flipping sneakers!
Collecting and selling limited edition or hard-to-find sneakers has become a big profitable business in recent years.
If you’re able to find rare or limited edition sneakers for a low price, you can sell them for a significant profit.
14. Open A Remote Office Space ($4/Square Foot)
Studies showed that coworking spaces could boost productivity and creativity, so it’s no wonder that they’re in high demand. 
If you have a large enough space, you could start your own coworking space in a small town.
This is a great option for those who want to work from home but need a more professional setting.
15. Do Surveys Online ($1/Survey)
There are many companies that are willing to pay people to take surveys online.
This is a great way to make some extra money in your spare time.
You can do as many or as few surveys as you want, and you can typically cash out your earnings via PayPal.
16. Resell Tickets ($2000/Month)
Although ticket scalping might be unethical to some, you could make a significant profit by reselling tickets to events.
There is always a high demand for tickets to popular concerts, sporting events, and shows.
If you’re able to get your hands on good seats for a low price, you can sell them for a profit.
17. Furniture Restoration ($22/Hour)
You could pick up old furniture from garage sales or thrift stores and restore them to sell for a profit.
This is a great option for those who are handy and have an eye for detail.
18. Hauling/Large Truck Rental ($50/Day)
You could offer your services to businesses or individuals who need help moving large items.
This is a great option for those who are strong and have experience driving large vehicles.
19. Firewood Delivery ($200/Cord)
There is always a high demand for firewood in the winter.
You could deliver firewood to people in your area for a fee.
This is a great way to make some extra money for those who have a truck or SUV.
20. Sell Stock Photography/Videos ($0.02/Month Per Image Or Video)
If you’re a good photographer or videographer, you could start a photography business where you can sell your photos and videos online.
There are many websites that allow you to start a photography business and sell your photos or videos for a royalty fee.
21. Off-The-Grid Power Installation ($23/Hour)
If you’re interested in renewable energy, you could start your business installing off-the-grid power systems.
This is a great option for those who are handy and have experience with electrical work.
22. Snow Removal ($24/Hour)
In the winter, you could offer your services to clear snow from driveways and sidewalks.
All you need is a snow shovel and a little bit of muscle! You could also invest in a snowblower to make your life easier.
23. Rural Ride Sharing ($0.15/Minute)
Many people in rural areas don’t have access to reliable transportation.
You could start your own ride-sharing service to help people get around.
This can be a great way to earn some extra money, and you get to meet new people!
24. Cabin Or Long-Term Camp Construction ($100/Day)
If you’re handy with a hammer, you could build cabins or long-term camps in rural areas, then rent them out to campers or hunters. You could also sell them outright for a profit.
This is a great option for those who love the outdoors and don’t mind getting a little dirty.
25. Teach Courses Online ($25/Hour)
If you have a skill or knowledge that others would be interested in learning, you could teach courses online.
Even if you have no skills, many are looking for native speakers to teach them their language.
26. Revitalization Support Efforts ($13/Hour)
Revitalization support efforts are key in many small towns. If you have a heart for giving back, there are often opportunities to help with these projects.
You could start your business to help support these efforts while earning some extra money.
27. Gym ($63/Square Feet)
People in rural areas often have to drive long distances to get to a decent gym. If you’re passionate about fitness, you could open your own gym.
You could offer membership discounts to those who sign up for long-term contracts or pay-as-you-go options for those who don’t want to commit.
28. Storage Units ($40/Month)
You could start renting out storage units if you have extra space on your property. This is a great option for those who live in a small town with a lot of extra space.
29. Antique Store ($50/Day)
There is always a market for antique items. If you are passionate about antiques, you could open your own store.
You could also offer your services to appraise items for those looking to sell.
30. Greenhouse/Nursery ($35/Day)
If you have a green thumb, you could start your own greenhouse or nursery. You could grow plants, flowers, or vegetables to sell.
This is a great option for those who want to be their own boss and have a passion for gardening.
31. Local Campsites ($20/Day)
If you have some extra land, you could create your own campsites. This is a great option for those who love the outdoors and want to share their love with others.
You could also offer amenities like fire pits, picnic tables, and hiking trails to make your campsites more appealing.
32. Bed & Breakfast ($70/Night)
If you have a spare room or two, you could start your own bed & breakfast. This is a great option for those who love to meet new people and have a passion for hospitality.
You could also offer other amenities like packed lunches, laundry service, or airport shuttle service to make your guests’ stay more enjoyable.
33. Animal Training ($15/Hour)
If you love animals, you could start your own animal training business. This is a great option for those who are patient and have a passion for working with animals.
You could train dogs, horses, or other animals for obedience, tricks, or racing.
You can also offer other services like pet grooming and boarding.
34. Junk Hauling ($58/Hour)
If you have a truck or van, you could start hauling junk or doing site clean-ups for major projects.
You can even start your own junkyard if you have the space and the resources.
35. Land Rental ($850/Month)
If you have a large piece of property, you could start renting it out for farming or grazing and make a decent income.
And if your land gets enough sunlight, you could turn it into a solar farm and make $28k per acre/year. 
36. Second Hand Store ($700/Month)
There is always a market for second-hand items, especially in rural areas. If you have an eye for finding good deals, you could start your own second-hand store.
On average, you can find good deals and local flea markets in nearby cities and make 4% to 20% profit on the items you sell, so there is a lot of potential for making money.
37. Specialty Restaurant Or Tavern ($1200/Month)
If you have a unique concept for a restaurant or tavern, you could start your own.
This is one of the perfect small town business ideas for those who have experience in the food business and are looking for a challenge.
38. Food Truck ($1000/Month)
A food truck is very popular in small towns. This can be a very successful business if you have a passion for food and cooking.
You could specialize in a certain cuisine or offer a variety of foods to appeal to a wider audience.
39. Landscaping Business ($16/Hour)
Who doesn’t love a well-manicured lawn? If you have a knack for landscaping, you could offer your services to businesses, organizations, or individuals who need help with their landscaping.
40. Car Wash ($3000/Month)
People love to keep their cars clean. You could start your own car wash business if you have a good location and the right equipment.
41. Cleaning Services ($30/Hour)
No one likes cleaning, but everyone likes a clean house. If you’re detail-oriented and passionate about cleaning, this could be your perfect business.
42. Home Upkeep ($25/Hour)
There is always a need for someone who can do odd jobs and maintenance around the house, especially in small towns.
This can include things like food prepping, changing lightbulbs, fixing leaks, or even building fences.
43. Arcade ($1000/Month Per Game)
Who doesn’t love playing video games? If you have the space and the capital, you could start your own arcade.
Even a small arcade with just a few games can be among great business ideas.
44. Bowling Alley ($3,000/Lane Per Month)
Like an arcade, a bowling alley can be an amazing business opportunity.
The goal is to be the entertainment destination for your town or city.
45. Massage/Chiropractic Practice ($21/Hour)
Back and neck pain are very common, especially in small towns.
If you have experience in the medical field, you could start your own massage or chiropractic practice.
46. Engine Repair ($14/Hour)
Engines are the heart of a vehicle, and they always need to be in good working condition.
You could start your own engine repair business if you’re mechanically inclined.
You don’t have to limit yourself to cars; you could also repair engines for boats, motorcycles, or even small engines like those found in lawnmowers and snow blowers.
47. Christmas Tree Farm ($9,000/Acre)
An acre can yield around 200 trees, generating a lot of revenue during the Christmas season.
The problem with this business is a limited demand for Christmas trees in small towns, so you would need to find a way to market your trees to people in larger cities or towns.
48. Local Tour Guide ($10/Hour)
If your town or city has a lot of history or is a popular tourist destination, you could start your own local tour guide business.
This is a great way to show off your town or city and make some extra money.
49. Public Notary ($1,000/Month)
A notary public is a person who is authorized by the government to witness the signing of important documents and to administer oaths.
States have different requirements for becoming a notary, but you can usually do it by taking a short course and passing a test.
50. Plumber/HVAC Services ($23/Hour)
We can’t live without plumbing or heating and cooling, so these services are always in high demand.
If you’re good with your hands and have some experience in the plumbing or HVAC field, you could start your successful business.
There is always a demand for these services, so this could be a very lucrative business.
51. Electrician ($25/Hour)
Electricians are always in high demand, and we need them to keep the lights on!
If you’re good with your hands and have some experience in the electrical field, you could start your own business.
This is one of the great business ideas for mechanically inclined people interested in electricity.
52. Property Sale Prepping ($15,000/Property)
Property and business owners always want their homes to look their best when they put them on the market.
If you’re handy and have a knack for home improvement, you could start your own business prepping properties for sale.
You could do things like painting, minor repairs, or even landscaping to make the property more appealing to buyers.
53. Sell Handicrafts ($1-$20/Piece)
There are many platforms online where you can sell your handicrafts, such as Etsy or Amazon Handmade.
You could also sell your crafts at local fairs or markets. The trick is to find a niche market for your crafts.
54. Rural Infrastructure Development ($100,000-$500,000/Project)
If you have experience in the construction or engineering field, you could start your own business developing rural infrastructure.
This could include bridges, roads, or even water and sewer systems. There is a lot of money to be made in this business.
55. Home Watching Services ($25-$50/Day)
If you live in a popular tourist destination, you could start your own home-watching business. This involves going to people’s homes while on vacation and ensuring everything is in order.
You could also do things like watering plants or taking in the mail.
56. Gas Station/Convenience Store ($0.15/Gallon)
All towns and cities need gas stations to keep people fueled up and on the road.
You could also add a convenience store to your gas station, generating even more revenue.
57. Tech Support Service Provider ($30/Hour)
Many small town businesses and individuals need tech support but don’t have the time or expertise to do it themselves.
If you’re good with computers and have some experience in the IT field, you could start your own tech support business and provide these services to clients.
58. Organic Food Delivery Service ($25-$50/Delivery)
Organic food is becoming increasingly popular, and people are willing to pay a premium.
If you’re passionate about organic food and have a food truck or van, you could start your delivery service.
You could deliver fresh produce, meat, and other organic products to people’s homes and make a profit.
59. Personal Shopper ($11/Hour)
When people are short on time, they’re often willing to pay someone to do their shopping.
You could start your shopping business if you enjoy shopping and have a good eye for deals.
You could do grocery shopping, clothes shopping, or even gift shopping for people.
60. Grocery Store (2%/Product)
Grocery stores are a staple in every local community and are always in high demand.
If you have the capital to start your own store, this could be among very profitable business ideas.
61. Specialty Gourmet Foods ($20-$40/Product)
This might seem like a very niche market and won’t work in every small town, but there is a lot of money to make in specialty gourmet foods.
You could make homemade jams, local honey, or artisan cheese and market them to a higher-end clientele.
62. Florists ($1500/Month)
People will always need flowers for special occasions, and you could be the one to provide them.
You could start your florist business if you have a green thumb and business acumen.
You could either operate out of a brick-and-mortar store or do things like weddings and events.
63. Card & Gift Shop ($2/Card)
Cards and gifts are always in demand, especially around holidays.
While this industry is very competitive, and many believe it’s in decline, money is still to be made if you can find the right niche.
One way to do this is to focus on selling unique, handmade cards and gifts that have a personal touch.
64. Main Street Barber Shop ($25/Haircut)
The barber shop is a classic small town business that can be very profitable.
Opening a barbershop could be great if you have experience cutting hair and a good location.
65. Flour Mill (20%/Sack Of Flour)
A flour mill is a great way to get into the food production business and provide a staple product for your local community.
Flour mills have been around for centuries and are still in operation today.
66. Poultry Farm Business ($25000)
According to Fox, Americans alone consume around 8 billion chickens per year. 
Poultry is a very popular meat, and starting your own farm can be a very profitable small town business idea.
67. Food Processing Business
Food processing is an amazing way to add value to agricultural products and make them more marketable.
If you have the space and the equipment, you could start your own food processing business.
There are many different types of food that can be processed, so you’ll need to find a niche that you’re passionate about.
68. Beekeeping ($600/Hive)
Beekeeping is a great way to produce honey and other products that are in high demand.
If you’re interested in this small town business, you’ll need to do some research to find out if it’s feasible in your area.
Beekeeping can be very rewarding, but it’s important to ensure you’re prepared for the work involved.
69. Provision Store ($500/Month)
Provision stores are a great way to provide essential goods and services to your community.
This could be one of the very successful business ideas if you have the space and capital to start a store.
Which Small Town Business Idea Is Most Profitable In Rural Areas?
The most profitable business in rural areas is the one that meets a local area’s needs.
No one knows your rural community better than you do, so if you can identify a need in your rural community that isn’t currently being met, you could make a lot of money by filling it.
A great way to do this is to start by talking to people in rural communities and see what they need. Once you identify a need, do some research and figure out how you can meet it.
Additionally, you can research and see what businesses are already thriving in similar nearby towns and model your business after them.
Which Franchise Is Best In Rural Area?
The best franchise in a rural area is a provision store. Most rural areas don’t have access to the same selection of products and services that those in urban areas do, so a provision store can be a great way to bring needed items to the community.
So, What Are the Best Small Town Business Ideas for Rural Areas You Can Implement Right Now?
There are many great small town business ideas for rural areas, but the key is to find one that meets a local need.
By researching and talking to people in your community, you can figure out what that need is and start making money by filling it.
So get out there and start brainstorming some great rural small town business ideas today!