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Top 103 Rural & Small Town Business Ideas in 2022

February 18, 2022

Rural America has been a thoroughly discussed and debated topic throughout the last decade.

With poverty rates now on the descent a shift in demographics is enhancing life in small towns. 

As more baby boomers are drawn to the serene and minimalist lifestyle offered in rural communities, they're bringing in a disposable income and a demand for business.

There is an opportunity for rural and small-town business ideas to be prosperous.

But which businesses will generate the highest ROI on investment?

What about market trends and statistical data?

Important info for potential business owners to make a more qualified decision. 

We've done some sleuthing and have found lucrative and viable options to generate an income outside Urban America.

Chapter 1

Cuisine

Food has been a focal part of American culture for centuries.

 American's enjoy the social aspect of sharing a meal, frequenting the local bar for a libation, or going out for ice cream after church on a Sunday afternoon. 

Owners of culinary establishments in rural America walk a fine line between creating a community environment and catering to the potential tourist market.

For those interested in opening cuisine-based business conduct thorough research to understand your target market to ensure you are offering culinary infusions geared to the local palate.

This article offers some valuable information in understanding industry statistics and how to best capitalize on your culinary endeavor.

The restaurant industry is worth over $863 billion dollars in the USA and projected to increase by 3.7% by 2024 suggesting that now is an excellent time to take advantage of this profitable business opportunity. 

Here are a few suggestions that statistically demonstrate a decent level of success in rural and small towns in the USA.

picture of a coffee mug and coffee beans

1. Coffee Shop & Bar

Coffee shops are a popular place for a community to congregate, socialize, or enjoy a beverage on the go.

Research your costs, analyze your specific target market, offer items exclusive to your area, and this can be a cost-effective enterprise. 

You can open an independent coffee shop for as little as $5000 or invest as much as $350,000+.

With projected earnings for shop owners estimated at $60,000-$160,000 per annul, there is the potential to achieve significant monetary success.

Consider adding specialty coffees to your menu by obtaining a liquor license

Baked goods or locally made edibles, expanding sales and gross receipts will only enhance your overall profit margin.

This article highlights some considerations when determining if this is a good fit for your financial situation.

2. Diner

Everyone appreciates a good breakfast diner-nothing quite like a greasy fry-up to start your morning.

You can open a diner for between $50,000-$75,000 as per this article.

People living in rural America have a particular fondness for diners, as they are often a hub of activity. 

By including an all-day breakfast or light lunch menu, you eliminate the costs of having to prepare more expensive dinner cuisine and have the option for set hours, thus reducing employee and overhead expenses. 

Keep in mind, however, that fewer hours equate to less opportunity to generate sales.

Locally provided eggs, protein options, or fruit/vegetable bowls incorporate the community, which would be an attraction for tourists and locals alike.

cartoon of a food truck

3. Food Truck

If I lived in Idaho, I would give serious consideration to opening a fry truck.

Poutine, chili fries, waffle fries, specialty fries, etc. By utilizing produce grown in your backyard, you cut overhead cost margins significantly. 

This expenditure equates to an average of $40,000-$250,000 to invest and open.

Check out the cost analysis found in this publication.

With food costs around 25%-35%, your nemesis will be bad weather, poor location choice, or a combination of the two. 

It is possible to generate a profit margin of 6%-9%.

This article offers relevant information if considering this rural and small-town business idea.

cartoon of outdoor seating at a restaurant

4. Restaurant

Americans love to eat.

They enjoy it even more when someone takes care of the cooking. 

With 51% of consumer spending landing in the pockets of restaurateurs, the key to a significant profit margin is staying abreast of current trends. 

This ideology is no different for small-town business owners.

Digital menu boards and a unique carte du jour will enhance the overall experience for your clientele. 

Establish a reputation for yourself by offering locally grown, organic produce or specialty dishes representing your geographical locale and you will also cater to tourists interested in experimenting with regional cuisine.

This publication provides suggestions on how to develop your customer base and secure an ROI of 5%-15%.

cartoon of a football and two football helmets

5. Sports Bar

It all comes down to how well you manage your business and meet the demands of your target market.

If you live in a rural area that does not have much competition, yet has a sufficient population with disposable income or a tourist sector, opening a sports bar is worth considering. 

This article provides details on how to open a sports bar.

With an average investment of around $400,000 and markups on alcohol between 200%-400%, this business suggestion offers attractive profit margins.

 Check out the statistics shared in this post supporting this information.

6. Ice Cream Shoppe

Ice cream is a sweet way to make a buck if you play your cards right.

 Depending on the weather and economic status of your area, you will need to consider whether it is better to invest in:

  • A storefront venue ($10,000-$50,000+)
  • Ice cream stand ($2000-$10,000)
  • Ice cream truck ($10,000-$20,000)

Read through this post to learn more about alternate options for opening an ice cream establishment.

With the potential to generate a profit margin between 20%-50%+ location is critical.

If you opt for a mobile venture, you can cater to community events such as local fairs, carnivals, and school socials.

Utilize local products where possible to engage the locals and impress tourists.

picture of ice cream and global  industry stats

You could take it one step further and sell dairy products to your patrons which would eliminate the issue of potential product waste.

This article suggests that it is possible to achieve profits exceeding $50,000 in a 3-4 month season, making this a business startup worthy of consideration.

7. Donut Shop

Americans consume over 10 billion donuts every year-staggering statistics.

 Projected to reach approximately $55 billion by 2024, the donuts industry has a CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) forecast at 5.2% by 2024, making owning a donuts shop a highly profitable business suggestion. 

Depending on your small town, there may be a need for a donuts shop-or a second-even third one.

image of baking supplies

Do your market research and ascertain if there is a demand in your area. 

Average equipment costs are around $15,000, but donuts are very inexpensive to make once you have acquired the essential machinery and secured a location. 

The median wage for owners of a donuts shop is about $40,000/year.

A straightforward and economical expenditure, and this article offers insight on how to open a donuts shop with a minimal investment (under $15,000).

8. Juice Bar

Juice bars are becoming increasingly trendy, even in rural America, with an increase of 4%-8% in the last ten years.

There are several franchise opportunities that you can review here, costing between $47,000-$400,000+. 

Or, here's a good article to help you start a juice bar on your own.

The initial investment is a bit pricey, however, it is worth noting that owners earn an average revenue of $100,000-$400,000, so it wouldn't take long to recoup your introductory costs.  

picture of the Chester's home page

9. Fast Food Franchise

Fast food franchises are a sure bet if you can secure the necessary capital required for the initial investment, which equates to around $1.5 million.

Before you panic, understand that franchisees need a liquid capital of $400,000 and a net worth of $750,000. 

Still a considerable investment, however, certain franchises are more flexible, and a select few will even assist the franchisee by fronting the money.

You can read more about franchise opportunities, cost analysis, and profit margins here.

image of a pizza delivery man

10. Pizza Parlor

Mamma Mia! No matter where you live, there is no denying that American enjoy the taste and convenience of pizza.

The industry is on the rise, with a projected growth of 2.9% for 2022.

 Depending on your vision-counter-top, a few tables, and take out section versus a sit-down pizzeria, you should plan to invest between $75,000-$100,000.

Don't have the vision yourself?

Here are the best pizza franchises to open.

This article outlines how you can start a pizza parlor in your small town.

 With a profit margin of 7-20%, pizza shop owners make an above-average yearly income.

Add to the mix economic growth and a projected increase in consumer spending, and this is an great time to investigate this suggestion further.

11. Bakery

No matter where you live in this great nation, there will be bakers and those (like me) who screw up Rice Krispie squares.

You can launch a bakery from your home for next to nothing with the equipment you already own and is a top rural and small town business idea in 2022.

Build a website with contact and order forms and utilize referral methods until you become more established. 

With startup fees projected between $10,000-$70,000, you could 'jump start' a bakery for as little as $2000 as advised in this article.

cartoon of a woman and a birthday cake

A bakery can generate a monthly income from $2000-$5000, but sales and an ability to keep food/ingredients cost down dictate profit margins. 

The average ROI for a baker is 2-5%.

Still, there is room for a more substantial percentage if you have a solid business plan, cater to the specific needs of your market, and price your goods fairly while still generating a surplus.

This article is an excellent resource for anyone interested in learning more about starting a bakery.

cartoon of people shopping for organic produce

12. Farmers Market Vendor

People enjoy strolling through booths and purchasing locally grown produce and foodstuffs.

With a profit margin of 2-3%+ this article lends suggestions on how to become a vendor at your local farmers market.

Utilizing social media and creating an online presence will accelerate your earnings. 

Choose your wares with care, as this post specifically breaks down the average sales rate for popular and specific items.

With sales averaging between $1000-$5000/month, what you sell, how much you sell, and how you price are all factors in becoming successful with this business venture.

cartoon of people catering

13. Catering

Everyone enjoys a good potluck, but sometimes the event requires a bit more je ne sais quoi.

Owning a catering company in a small town has the potential to be an advantageous opportunity with profit margins reported to be 15%+

Niche relevance is paramount, no matter where you live.

Understand the tastes and style of your target market, and an investment of $10,000-$50,000 can quickly be recouped.

14. Organic Food Supplier

Americans are purchasing organic food at a rate of 41% higher this year.

 Offering fresher-fewer pesticides and GMO-free-environmentally friendly products, health-conscious citizens are not the only ones jumping on this trend.

Organic food sales broke through the $50 billion mark in 2018, and reports indicate a rise of 5%-10% projected for 2022.

Consider these options to determine where you can generate sales:

  • Restaurants

  • Roadside Stands

  • Farmer's Market

  • Conventional & Natural Food Grocery Stores

cartoon of a recipe book and people cooking

This article offers insight on current trends and how to best monetize the sale of organic food.

Organic food suppliers typically secure a 30-40% operating profit margin, but this is dependent on low input costs and premium prices for product.

Chapter 2

Self-Care

Projected to reach $275 billion by 2025, this $9.9 billion industry is on the rise with the current restoration of the American economy.

 Consumers are becoming more inclined to indulge in superior products suggesting that now is an ideal time to consider entering this market. 

Americans are increasing their spending habits around personal care products and services that enhance individuals' overall well-being and promote health and wellness.

The ‘when you look good, you feel good analogy’.

Here are a few of the best small town and business ideas in 2022 growing in popularity as we see a resurgence in the self-care industry.

15. Hair Salon

As the per capita disposable income rises, Americans are more likely to frequent hair salons and spend money on premium products such as tints, colors, and hair care merchandise.

The current surge in the economy predicts a growth rate of 1-4% suggesting this is a small town business idea worth considering.

These numbers represent probable circumstances for salon owners.

The projected ROI is between 8-17% for this $110+ billion industry. 

Check out this article for tips on how to open a successful hair salon.

cartoon of hair care products

16. Barbershop

While the American barbershop has evolved, the core premise remains unchanged.

Men frequent barbershops for a close shave, an ear and nose trim, stellar haircut, and some male bonding time.

Americans living in rural areas considering this option should evaluate the following:

 1

Is there a demand for your service?

 3

How will you set yourself apart?

 2

What does competition look like?

 4

Will you offer a retail section?

With profit margins reported to average 10-30%, this $3.8 billion industry is forecast to have a growth rate of 8% between now and 2025, as stated in this publication.

17. Medispa

Medispas can expect to see a CAGR of 13.5% by 2026, making this $12+billion industry a top contender for rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

With an influx of consumer appreciation for self-care and the benefits of non-intrusive anti-aging procedures, there will be explosive growth in this market as outlined in this article.

Medispas generate a 38% gross profit margin.

By adding a retail area to your establishment, you potentially inflate client retention by 60-90%.

This publication shares some valuable insight to how to open a medispa.

picture of massage supplies

18. Massage

Insurance companies are becoming increasingly amenable to covering costs of self-care procedures such as massage therapy.

With an average ROI for owners reported to be 10-15+%, your investment will depend on the style of service you are looking to offer.

Here are some facts and numbers to contemplate:

01

Home-based massage business requires a capital of around $6000

02

Brick and mortar establishments call for an investment of $100,000-$500,000

03

Franchise options expect an investment between $400,000 and $1.5 million

This post lists the top ten most lucrative massage therapy franchises in the USA.

This article offers insightful information and specific costs associated with massage therapy.

19. Nail Salon

With the options to open a nail salon, offer mobile services, or start in your home until you establish yourself, there is no denying ladies love to get their nails done.

Initial investment costs average $10,000-$100,000 depending on your set-up. 

Profit margins are dependent on your client base, and the ability to not only retain but promote ongoing sales for your services.

cartoon of ladies getting their nails done at a salon

Depending on the competition in your area, you will need to ascertain if there is enough demand for your service.

Consider offering a unique service or implementing a retail section to escalate sales. This article provides additional information on how to start a nail salon.

20. Aromatherapy

More and more Americans are turning to holistic options to relieve pain, relaxation/sleep, and health-related issues.

The aromatherapy industry will be worth $4.5 billion by 2023 and has an estimated CAGR of 6.8%. 

By using natural oils and infusions, stimulating physical and emotional well-being for individuals, aromatherapists average an hourly rate of $25-$65+.

image of burning candles

Qualifications are required, which you can read about here.

With options to work out of your home, own a business, travel to client's homes, teach classes, or sell online via an e-commerce site, this is one of the top rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

Here is the buyers’ guide for aromatherapists, which may be helpful.

And check out this publication for specific details on how to launch an aromatherapy business.

cartoon of a woman in a zen yoga pose

21. Acupuncture

You require qualifications for this rural and small town business idea in 2022.

But if you're interested in the rapidly growing market (CAGR of 14% by 2023) and valued at over $50 million, you will need to invest some time and capital.

A licensed acupuncturist requires three years of study, and tuition costs an average of $40,000.

Armed with this information, which you can learn more about here, weigh in the possibility of generating an annual salary of $75,000+.

Options for private practice in your home or establishment or contracting yourself to other medial/holistic based businesses.

So if you can network well, self-market, and construct a steady client base, you can increase your earning potential exponentially.

This article provides additional information on how to become a profitable acupuncturist.

cartoon of a personal trainer and a client lifting weights

22. Personal Training

Personal training is a flexible and extensive area within the fitness industry.

And there are several ways a licensed personal trainer can generate an income of $40-$70+/hour in this $10 million industry worthy of consideration:

Provide individual training services at an established gym or franchise.

Conduct training sessions/boot camps/etc. from your residence.

Offer in-home personal training.

Become an online personal trainer.

It's COMPETITIVE.

How you market your brand is paramount to your success.

With 330,000 jobs forecast by 2026, there is not only significant growth but plenty of opportunities.

Consider your niche and target market to capitalize on this market trend. Dial that niche DOWN-get uber specific.

Focus on your exact client base and you will be more successful. 

Here is a publication outlining how to become a personal trainer and develop and lucrative business within your small town.

cartoon of man with fitness equipment

23. Fitness Studio

Americans are becoming increasingly conscious of their physical and mental health.

With a substantial rise in healthy eating trends, the fitness industry is booming and expected to grow by 2.7% in 2022. 

An extremely aggressive market, so if you hope to be successful in this multi-billion industry, you're going to have to think outside the box.

Consider implementing these suggestions in addition to your regularly scheduled classes or studio setup.

Things like:

  • Sell workout plans online.
  • Design a fitness APP.

  • Market meal plans.

  • Write an eBook or blog.

  • Host fitness seminars and educational opportunities in your community.

There's potential to earn a 5-25% ROI in this industry, but you are going to have to hustle.

This post analyses how to be successful in this fast-paced and competitive market.

Chapter 3

Healthcare

This section outlines rural and small town business ideas in 2022 specific to licensed/certified professionals.

People debating relocating or currently residing in a rural area in the USA.

Industry statistics confirm that there is an upsurge of growth and opportunity in small towns for these fields.

With the potential to generate a significant income stream these are the top contenders worthy of consideration.

24. Chiropractor

Aches and pains know no boundaries.

No matter where you reside in our great nation, there will be individuals turning to chiropractic care as an alternate solution to prescription medication.

The chiropractic industry will be worth an estimated $17.93 billion by 2025 and slated to grow at a rate of 12% between 2016-2026. 

Chiropractors are in demand with a market exploding at a significant pace.

As this treatment method becomes more accepted by society, there will continue to be an influx of clientele looking for services. 

Cleveland University Chiropractic and Health Sciences shares these statistics:

  • 25.9% in urban areas
  • 54.5% in suburban communities
  • 19.7% in rural areas
cartoon of chiropractic chart with a man & woman beside it

You're looking at an investment upward of $100,000 to open your own clinic.

But with an annual salary of $52,000-$99,000+ chiropractors land in the top one hundred top-paying jobs in the USA.

This article outlines how to open a chiropractic clinic.

And check out this publication providing additional information on industry statistics and market research.

cartoon of eyes

25. Optometrist

With a rise in baby boomers comes an increasing need for optometry.

The aging population in the USA has created a projected growth increase of 10% between 2018-2028, making an optometrist one of the more rapidly growing health care based industries. 

Optometrists have the option to own their own clinic, work alongside a doctor's office, or in an optimal goods store.

The average salary for an optometrist is $120,000+/year, making this an extremely lucrative profession.

Providing the bulk of care for ocular related issues.

This article provides further insight into current trends within the industry.

picture of teeth

26. Dentists

The dental industry is worth $139.8 billion and expected to see a growth rate of 1.5% in 2022. 

If you include specialty procedures such as implants, that projected growth rate climbs to 7.5%.

More dentists are capitalizing on medical insurance before billing clients under their meager dental insurance coverage. 

There is a significant opportunity to not only grow a substantial practice in a small town but become highly successful.

Making this one of the top rural and small town business ideas in 2022 for qualified professionals. 

When doing your market research, investigate the following:

Is the population stable or increasing? And what’s the competition?

Is there a dental school within an hour proximity to your proposed location?

How close is the nearest airport?

This article offers some fascinating statistics and suggestions on how to make an insane amount of money as a dentist in rural America.

Here is a publication providing a full assessment of how to open a dental clinic.

27. Health Clinic

The health care industry is on the rise, with profit margins erupting.

 Projected to continue for the next five years at a minimum, this trend has just begun gaining momentum.

The estimated market value of the healthcare industry will be over $5.5 billion by 2025, with 43% of for-profit establishments corning this business model. 

You will need a minimum investment of $100,000.

But with earnings rising at a rate of 23%, you should quickly recoup and earn a substantial ROI on your expenditure.

This article offers additional statistics, which are quite compelling if you have the required education and are considering establishing a health clinic in rural America.

cartoon of nurses and doctors

With an average net profit of 10%, now would be an excellent time to discuss this suggestion.

This publication provides recommendations on how to open a successful health care clinic.

28. Hearing Instrument Specialist

Ranking number eight on the list of highest-paid professionals without a degree, you can become a hearing instrument specialist in two years-either online or through a college.

Check out this post to learn more about becoming certified for this position, which averages an annual paycheck between $45,000-$80,000.

The role of a hearing instrument specialist is to assess clients' hearing loss, measuring the extent of loss through a series of tests.

vector of people at computers running hearing tests

Also responsible for fitting, adjusting, dispensing, and maintaining hearing aids, you have the option to work alongside an audiologist or open your own clinic. 

America has an aging population making this a viable opportunity for significant monetary compensation.

With an estimated 15.9% growth projected between 2018-2028, if you are interested in pursuing this avenue, read this publication on how to open a clinic.

29. Pathology Lab/Diagnostic Center

Pathology labs are closely regulated by government legislation as they are responsible for testing and treating disease and complicated infections.

 This article outlines the numerous roles of a pathologist and other professionals found in the lab.

Many areas in the United States are under serviced, making this a suggestion worth researching further.

Pathologists earn between $144,000-$216,000/year based on training and length of practice.

image of a woman in a lab

Pathology labs and diagnostic centers reportedly worth $55 billion+ in total revenue for 2021, as outlined in this article and have the potential to generate a steady profit margin.

Projected to have a growth rate of 1-5% in 2022, if this idea appeals to you, connect with The College of American Pathologists to learn how you can become an accredited affiliate.

cartoon of a midwife with clients

30. Midwifery

The plane of child birthing is changing in America.

More women and new parents are turning to home births and more naturalistic delivery methods, making midwifery one of the fastest growing professions in the USA. 

With a projected growth rate of 25% between 2018-2028, now is an ideal time to consider this rewarding career path. 

The average salary for a midwife is approximately $113,000/year.

But do your research and ascertain the following information before deciding to enter this intensive educational discipline:

  • Is there a market for your service?
  • What is the competition in the area you are considering?
  • Will you partner with a doula, nurse practitioner, or be an independent?

This article has some helpful suggestions on how to become a midwife and the required education necessary to become accredited in this field.

31. Doula

Becoming a doula is far less educationally arduous than a midwife and requires only 7-12 hours of in-class study.

An additional 16 hours of birth doula training and attendance at 2-5 live births are also prerequisites.

Program costs an average $300-$500, which you can learn more about here.

Doulas are becoming increasingly popular, especially postpartum doulas, with a projected growth rate of 15% between 2016-2022.

The average salary is based on a per birth grid and equates to $250-$1000/birth.

This article provides details regarding how to become a doula and their specific roles.

32. Nutritionist

The obesity epidemic in the USA is nothing new, but how citizens are dealing with this crisis has shifted in parameter.

More Americans are taking the time to educate themselves on nutritious and healthy foods.

With trends and diet fads changing at the speed of light, however, it can often become quite discouraging for many. 

Enter the nutritionist.

cartoon of a female nutritionist

An knowledgeable individual well versed in both food trends and individualized meal plans, they have the ability to change the trajectory of people's lives.

This four-year program, which you can learn more about here, results in a gratifying and lucrative career. 

Nutritionists earn around $60,000+/year, and the projected growth rate for this industry is upwards of 11%.

If you are interested in learning more about becoming a nutritionist or are researching suggestions on how to market yourself, check out this article.

Chapter 4

Retail

Retail is the process of selling consumer goods or services to customers through multiple channels of distribution to earn a profit-Wikipedia.

The retail industry was valued at $3.3 trillion in 2018 and expected to surpass a value of $5 trillion by the end of 2021.

With a projected growth rate of 2%, there is no sign of consumer spending slowing down in the retail sector.

Making now a fantastic time to take advantage of a rising economy and a decrease in national unemployment rates.

Here are a few top picks in retail for small-town and rural America worthy of further investigation.

33. Clothing Boutique

Sure it's not the Haute fashion of Broadway and Beverly Hills, but part of the charm and attraction of rural America is the absence of the busy streets and constant bustle of activity.

Rest assured, fashion-forward people live in small towns too.  

Understand the trends of your target market.

Who are your ideal customers? 

cartoon of mannequins and a giant stool of thread

Determining what you will sell and the price point necessary to make sales while still generating a profit is paramount to your success.

The economic shift has resulted in an upswing of consumer spending, as demonstrated in this publication

Should you decide to embark in the fashion industry, you can choose to own a shop, buy into a franchise, or opt for starting an online boutique.

34. Cosmetics

If you or someone you know has a mild Sephora addiction, then you will concur that there is a TON of money to be made in the cosmetics industry.

Expected to exceed $93 billion by the end of 2021 this retail market is expected to grow annually by 3.5% from 2020-2023.

Interested?

Now's an ideal time to consider investing in this profitable retail venture.

cartoon of women beside giant make up products

Whether you choose to open and sell your own merchandise, franchise, or go the online-affiliate marketing/drop shipping route, you will need some capital for your initial investment.

This publication shares some interesting numbers and ideas about how to minimize costs and still be successful in this industry.

Plan on investing $10,000-$20,000+ depending on the platform you utilize to sell your products.

35. Thrift Store

Americans are riding the resale trend, and the thrift store business market is booming.

American consumers have become more environmentally conscious.

Consumer fashion is shifting to vintage and used clothing and thrift stores are a cost-effective way to remain contemporary without breaking the bank. 

Keep in mind that research is vital for success.

By understanding your target market, spending habits, and economic status, there is a higher rate for successful longevity with this venture.

Is there a demand for what you are proposing to sell?

This article offers some helpful suggestions on how to open a thrift store, and this article can help you open an online thrift store at a fraction of the cost.

picture of a variety of shoes

36. Shoe Store

Shoes generate one of the most substantial profit margins in the retail industry, sitting at around 40%.

Everyone needs shoes, so the key to becoming successful with this rural and small town business idea in 2022 is to ascertain your target market trends and needs. 

By assessing key components, you will be prepared to stock your shelves with sellable items to generate a substantial return on your investment.

You will need upwards of $200,000 to open a shoe store.

But with numerous franchise options listed in this article, you can establish yourself with a trusted brand.

This article breaks down how to open a shoe store.

With a projected growth rate of 2.4% between 2020-2024, it is an excellent time to be a shoe salesperson.

37. Jewelry

One of the fastest-growing industries in retail, the jewelry and gems market is forecast to be valued at over $21000 million by 2025 with a CAGR of 1.9%.

With the economic recession behind us for now, consumers have been demonstrating a voracious appetite for jewelry and gems.

Expected to grow 5-6% between now and 2025, this is an ideal time to consider selling these popular trinkets. 

picture of jewlery

You need to recognize your market trends and respond appropriately.

 Determining what you will sell is the cornerstone of success.  

Retail jewelers average a profit margin between 48%-52%.

With storefront, from your home and online options available, this article offers suggestions on how to open a jewelry store.

38. Antique Shop

The antique world is not dead, nor is it dying.

With a projected growth rate between 5%-7% for 2022, online sales are a factor of this market's resurgence.

The best plan of attack with antiques is to niche down-get super-specific.

Currently trending are tables and chairs.

Will they be trending a year from now?

Who can know, but the point is to do your homework. 

By catering to the demands of your target market, you will be much more prosperous with sales.

There is the potential to earn $45,000-$60,000 with a 30% profit margin.

This publication offers some tips on how to start and a cost analysis worth considering.

cartoon of a bar with stools at a cafe

39. Internet Café

There have been definitive improvements to internet signals in rural America.

But until there are further technological advances, there will continue to be 'dead zones' hence the need for an internet/cyber café.  

Plan on investing $100,000+, but you can expect to earn a gross profit margin of approximately 70%

With franchise options also available, there is no denying that this is a profitable venture.

You have the opportunity to cater to not only individuals living with intermittent internet access, but others wishing to have a social setting to complete their online business.

Here is a publication that maps out how to open an internet café with plenty of useful information.

40. Electronics Repair Shop

With a market forecast valued at over $165,000 by 2024, the electronics industry is growing at an annual growth rate of 14.8% and touted to have a user penetration rate of 37.5% as per this publication.

Small town America needs electronics too.

And with the new age of technological advancements and better WIFI access for rural areas, now is an excellent time to get in on the action.

Worthy of consideration before you begin is:

Who is your target market?

How will you achieve your projected profit margin? 

Who will be your supplier?

How will you market your business?

This publication provides helpful ideas on how to start an electronics store.

But if you prefer the online route, take a look at this post.

41. Corner Store

People are still enjoying shopping at the local convenience store. It's quick, easy, and well, convenient.

Despite the rising trend of online and home delivery grocery services, convenience stores continue to thrive with a projected growth rate of around 5%.

Depending on your location and specific requirements, you can plan on investing between $10,000-$1 million.

Gross profit margins are about 2% as per this publication

Understand that people's perception of convenience is changing and stock your shelves according to the needs of your locale and target market.

Convenience is expensive, so there is potential for reasonable profits with this venture.

This article provides information on how to open a convenience store for your review.

cartoon of men drinking alcohol

42. Liquor Store

There's no denying that American's enjoy their beer, but wine and spirits are close seconds making opening a liquor store a lucrative business opportunity.

The alcohol industry was valued at $250 billion in August 2019 and projected to have a growth rate of 3.3% in 2021

The average salary of a liquor store owner is between $21,000-$51,000/year.

But these numbers depend on the size of the population, trends of your target market, and sales.

Interested in this best rural and small town business idea in 2022?

This article offers a head to toe analysis of how to open a successful liquor store.

43. Retail Pharmacy

There are mixed reviews with regards to the growth of this industry.

But a non-negotiable is that you should not consider this business venture if you are not a licensed pharmacist.

You can open a retail pharmacy without credentials.

But you can't access the 'pharmacy' section of your business without a pharmacist present, making this an inconvenience worth noting. 

cartoon of a pharmacy

Plan to invest between $888,000-$1.8 million.

This article projects a 2.2% increase in growth for 2021.

If your small town or rural area is lacking a retail pharmacy or there is minimal to no competition, then this has the potential to be an extremely lucrative venture.

Retail pharmacy owners are reported to earn over $300,000/year.

This article outlines how to open a retail pharmacy.

cartoon of a hand refusing fast food

44. Health Food

Americans are getting healthier one day at a time.

In rural America, where many grow their produce, this is a no brainer.

If you reside in a small town with limited access to land opportunity conducive to harvesting your crops, however, the next best option is the health food store. 

Do your research and understand the demographics of your proposed location.

With a forecast growth rate of 5.7%, this industry will be worth $323+ billion by 2024.

Health Food store owners generate a net profit margin between 5%-10%.

This article provides additional information on how to begin creating a business plan and moving forward with this idea.

45. Bulk Barn

People like to buy in bulk.

And while it remains doubtful that Target is planning to open a store in rural America any time soon, there is an increasing demand for minimized waste/packaging and bulk food ingredients.

The bulk food industry is expected to see a CAGR of 4.6% between 2018-2023 as per this article.

If you're considering this rural and small town business idea in 2022 research these points first:

1

What is the population and target market of your location?

 3

What will you sell?

2

What is the competition already existing in that area?

 4

Who will be your wholesaler?

Disposable income is on the incline.

Ans Americans are looking to shop smarter and do their part for a greener tomorrow, making now an ideal time to consider this opportunity.

Here is a UK article outlining how to open a bulk food store that offers valuable insights on how to copycat this idea in the USA.

cartoon of men in a variety of construction poses

46. Hardware Store

The local hardware store is a regularly frequented locale for many small-town American's.

Often a hub of activity with everything you need for your home and garden.

Hardware stores generate a profit between 1.6-6% with a net profit before taxes of 3-7% as per this article, which also outlines how to open a hardware store. 

Again consider your location, target market, and competitors.

With a projected growth rate of about 3.9%, this style of commerce continues to see increased and consistent growth in the USA.

47. Farm Equipment-Sales & Maintenance

If you ate today, thank a farmer!

Agriculture is a fundamental component of our great nation, and rural America is the cog in the wheel making it all possible. 

Farmers need equipment to conduct daily business, so there needs to be a local business able to sell or repair to keep the system running smoothly.

The Agricultural Machinery Market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 7.9% between 2019-2024, as per this article.

cartoon of women in and beside a giant wheelbarrow and lavender

With a shift in advancement regarding technology, precision farming, and GPS controlled machinery, there are exciting changes currently taking place.

This article offers sight on how to open a farm equipment (tractor dealership) business.

48. Garden Center

The garden industry is valued at $50 billion and expected to increase by 2.8% in 2021.

You can sell what you like in a garden center.

Anything from packaged seeds, seedlings, plants, or equipment and tools attracts the consumer spending of farmers and homeowners in rural America. 

cartoon of giant pots with plants growing in them and people attending to them

As the per capita income and consumer certainty accelerate, this industry continues to flourish.

With an ROI between 12%-15%, this article offers some trends for the upcoming year.

If you are interested in opening a garden center, check out this publication for more information.

49. Gas Station/Mechanic

Gas stations with a convenient little store tucked in are projected to reach a value of  $422.8 billion by the end of 2021.

Add in an auto body/mechanic, and you can potentially double that number.

With a projected growth increase of 2%-5% within the year, this is a business suggestion worth considering. 

No matter where you reside in the USA you need transportation.

Rural and small-town America do not have the luxury of public transport, so they must rely on a vehicle.

The depreciation on any car/truck/SUV deters many people from purchasing new, and so they fix the one they have-over-and over-and-over. 

Client retention is what your business will be based on, as the bulk of your profit will come from the mechanical work.

Gas stations earn around 1-2% profit margin, while mechanics earn approximately 50-65% on labor and 20-28% on parts/sales as per this article.

If you are mechanically inclined and interested in this undertaking, take a look at this publication.

vector of a man washing a car

50. Car Wash

Given that the majority of the population in a small town own a car, the facts are that they will need somewhere to wash it.

A car wash is an excellent option with several alternatives.

Consider wash bays or full service when researching your target market.

If opting for a full service scout out the area for an existing location to minimize start-up costs. 

To construct a car wash from the ground up is a $700,000+ investment.

But there's the potential to generate an annual gross profit margin between $85,000-$100,000+.

Here's a fantastic post breaking down costs, gross and net profits worth reading. 

With a projected growth rate of 3.6%, this industry remains consistent in growth and earning potential.

This article outlines how you can start a car wash business that may be beneficial when doing your research.

51. Laundromat/Dry Cleaners

The convenience of a laundromat business/dry cleaners is important for many rural Americans as a vast majority do not meet the criteria for city water.

Residents either utilize a well or have to pay for water.

Economical, for a small-town business owner, this relatively passive income-based business has the potential to generate an annual gross income between $30,000-$1 million/location. 

cartoon of a woman doing laundry

While not the most inexpensive startup, you should plan to invest between $200,000-$500,000.

More if you opt for franchise alternatives, which you can learn more about here.  

There may not be as much demand for the dry cleaning component of this business.

But it does have the capacity to generate an additional stream of income and this article provides information on how to open a laundromat.

52. Tailor/Alterations

If you enjoy sewing or designing clothes, then starting a custom-tailored and alterations business may be a profitable venture to consider.

With little to no overhead (under $1000 if you have the necessary equipment), by starting-small-think out of your home-you will minimize costs while building your client base. 

This suggestion may not be the most lucrative, as the average median salary for a tailor is between $25,000-$35,000+/year.

If there's a demand for your service and you can secure steady clientele, this is a decent secondary income worth considering.

This article offers ideas on how to start a tailoring business.

picture of water bottles at refill station

53. Water Refill Station

The water crisis in the United States is becoming an ever-growing concern and already affects millions of citizens nationwide.

Water shortages and issues regarding safe drinking water are causing an increased demand for water refill stations and is one of the top rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

Regulated and environmentally conscious, water stations are resourceful and, in some instances a necessity for local residents.

With a projected CAGR of 5.4% between now and 2023, this $72,000 million industry will only continue to grow.  

This article offers some great tips to help you get started.

Chapter 5

Family

Family. 

The people who love us unconditionally. 

Americans enjoy spending time and money on their loved ones.

From entertainment, services, to essentials.

There's a market for profitable business ventures and here are a few top rural and small town business ideas in 2021 to consider.

54. Daycare

The daycare industry is on the rise.

Predicted to be one of the fastest-growing markets in 2022 the net profit margin for a daycare facility is 9.9%

As more parents return to the workforce they rely on daycare centers or home daycare providers to care for their children.

While the annual income for daycare owners is not a cash cow, there is the potential to earn between $30,000-$85,000 depending on your role and setup of your facility.

cartoon of a daycare setting

Home daycare centers earn less as they are mandated by legislation to care for fewer children, however, your overhead costs are significantly reduced.

Assess the competition and demand for services in your area. 

55. Elderly Care/Companion

The rapid advancement of an aging population is careening the elderly care industry into crisis mode.

With a reported shortage of in-home care workers in the United States, now is an ideal time to consider this business opportunity.

This $103 billion market is projected to grow at a rate of 41% in 2022.

Typically the annual wage for an in-home care providers was $30,000-$45,000.

cartoon of elderly people being cared for my women

But limited aides and trained staff, there are now options to freelance which have the potential to generate a salary of $90,000+/year depending on your level of education and experience.

Check out this publication to learn more about training and associated costs.

If there is an increasing number of elderly individuals in your small town then this is an idea worth investigating.

cartoon of a computer and a grad cap

56. Tutoring

If you live in a small town with an abundance of school-aged children chances are they have homework they don't understand.

With competition growing at an exponential rate for college acceptance, more parents are relying on private tutors to assist their precious bundles bring in the required grade point average.

The tutoring market is expected to reach a CAGR of 7.1% in 2021 and a net profit of 2-10% as per this article.

You can start small-out of your home, travel to students’ homes or connect at the local library which will minimize start-up costs to virtually nothing.

While there are the options to build a center or align with a franchise you would need to invest upwards of $100,000.

This article offers some further insight into how to start a tutoring business.

57. Music Lessons

If you are one of the lucky few blessed with a talent for playing an instrument why not consider offering music lessons?

You can start off small, build a client base and have the potential to earn $30+/hour.

This article outlines tips on how to begin and keep your start-up costs to a minimum. 

Small Scale Business Ideas Music Lessons Guitar

With a projected growth rate of 7% people are interested in learning how to play a musical instrument.

An increase in disposable income in the USA makes now the perfect time to consider this business venture.

This post is proof that there is significant potential to create a very lucrative business for yourself teaching music lessons.

58. Laser Tag

In rural America, there are limited entertainment opportunities for families.  

Reside in an area generously populated with young families with children?

Why not offer an enjoyable, family-focused business in their small town like laser tag?

Quickly becoming one of the most popular recreational activities, with a profit margin upwards of 40%. 

Not an inexpensive venture, over $1 million in start-up costs, this $375 million industry is on the rise with astronomical profit potential.

This article offers information on how to open a laser tag center.

cartoon of painted hands waving

59. Trampoline Park2

Who doesn't love jumping on a trampoline?

This family-fun distraction is attractive to people of all ages.

In a small town with limited entertainment options for a household, it has the potential to be an extremely lucrative venture. 

Start-up costs to open a trampoline park are substantial.

With a required investment of $1.2-$1.8 million, the profit potential is also sky high. 

Trampoline parks average a profit margin of 20-39%, which equates to roughly $700,000+/year.  

This article provides details on how to open a trampoline park.

With franchise options also available, there are numerous opportunities to be hugely successful with this rural and small town business idea in 2022.

Chapter 6

Pets

No matter where you live in the United States, there's no denying that people love their pets.

The unconditional love and those big eyes staring at you with adoration melt the hearts of their owners who are willing to spend money on their care and well-being.

There are numerous possibilities to capitalize on this love, but here are a few of the top contenders worth noting.

60. PET STORE

Even rural America requires a pet store.

A place where pet owners and animal lovers can go to purchase food, supplies, and incidentals for their four-legged friends.

With a projected growth rate of 3.8% in 2020, this $75+ million industry offers unlimited possibilities to generate a profit. 

This publication provides some interesting market trends demonstrating evidence that this industry is indeed on the incline.

Depending on your business platform, you can expect to invest between $15,000-$50,000+.

Here is an article outlining how to open a pet store with additional information.

cartoon of pets lined up front and back poses

61. PET GROOMING

The average American dog owner is reported to spend  $900-$1200/year on their fur baby.

With a projected CAGR of 4.5% between 2018 -2025, it is a great time to be a pet groomer.

Whether you opt for an establishment, mobile, or out of your home service, you will need to plan on investing between $10,000-$50,000 to cover the costs of equipment and essentials. 

Here's an article outlining how to open a pet grooming business worth reviewing.

Pet groomers can expect to earn an annual income between $40,000-$50,000+.

But this will depend on the demand for your services, client retention, and expenses.

This publication is interesting as it validates the growing potential in this industry.

cartoon of a lady walking dogs

62. Dog Boarding

Dog boarding/kennels are an excellent rural and small town business idea in 2022 for people residing in relatively close proximity to an urban center. 

People are willing to travel to ensure that their dog receives the utmost care.

With the space to run, operating a dog kennel is a highly profitable business venture.

With franchise options available, this suggestion will require around a $10,000-$400,000+ investment.

A well-reputed facility can charge between $25-$100/night per dog.

 Reported to be valued at nearly $6 billion, the dog boarding industry will grow at a projected rate of 3.5% between 2020-2025.

This article offers helpful suggestions on how to open a dog kennel.

63. Dog Trainer

Statistical analysis confirms that the pet services industry is exploding.

As people continue to utilize their disposable income to spend money on their furry friends. 

Projected to grow 11% between 2020-2024, there is a significant demand for dog trainers.

Earning an annual salary of $34,000-$54,000+, this is a steady income that has tremendous growth potential. 

If you have the experience, knowledge, and space to facilitate dog training from your home, then you minimize overhead costs.

Plan on investing $1000+ in addition to expenses to become certified, which you can learn more about here.

Interested in this rural and small town business idea in 2022?

Check out this publication on how to open a dog training business.

cartoon of a cat and dog with products in bubbles floating around them

64. Animal Breeder

The animal breeder dry spell is officially over with a demand for animal breeders expected to grow 2.2% in the next six years.

And will represent an estimated 14,130 new job opportunities.

If you have the knowledge, background, and patience to engage in one of the best rural and small town business ideas in 2022 there has never been a better time than right now. 

No formal degree or training is required to breed animals.

But you should have a basic understanding of: 

  • Genetics
  • Animal Science
  • Animal Reproduction

This publication offers information on the recommended credentials for this position.

Breeding farm and large animals is where the real profit lies, which is ideal for rural Americans.

Want to learn more? Check out this article.

Chapter 7

Agriculture

Fresh air and vast expanse of farmlands. 

Rolling hills and acres of lush foliage attract tourists and are primary reasons why the locals proudly call this home. 

But it depends on where you live-what produce you grow.

 Proximity to urban centers.

But if you can check the boxes.

 There are a couple of profitable rural and small town business ideas in 2021 to consider.

65. U-Pick Farm

Pick your own farms are trending and gaining in popularity.

A way to generate additional income, hobby farmers are utilizing this business venture as a way to increase their profit margin.

A few things to consider before launching this endeavor:

  • Who is your target market? Local-tourists-groups-a combination of them all?

  • What crops will you grow?

  • What will you charge?

  • Hours of operation.

Here is an excellent article outlining the pros and cons of pick your own farms to review.

This can be a sustainable income for farmers, and you do not require a vast expanse of land to yield high returns.

66. Christmas Tree Farm

If you have the property and soil conducive to growing evergreens, then consider opening and operating a Christmas tree farm.

The biggest hurdle will be time-as it takes up to eight years for trees to mature sufficiently to be considered optimal for cutting. 

Farmers that engage in this profitable business venture plant or replant one-eighth of their acreage every year according to this publication.

With the average price per tree an estimated $75+ and rising.

Do your calculations correctly on a 200 ready to harvest trees per acre, you are generating a gross profit of over $15,000.

cartoon of a man watering a tree

Start-up fees are minimal-cost of planting and maintaining-and will depend on the size of your lot.

By offering add-ons such as a food truck, Christmas boutique, hayrides, etc., you can charge an additional rate per person.

This article provides helpful suggestions on how to open and operate a Christmas tree farm.

67. Corn Maze/Pumpkin Patch

Fall is a time for giving thanks and what better way to appreciate mother nature than by getting outside and enjoying it.

Corn mazes are quite trendy and, if done correctly, can generate gross profit margins upwards of $30,000/season.

Of course, for the farmer, it is not all fun and games. 

Careful planning, a warm and inviting atmosphere, insurance costs, and other incidentals must be considered if you plan to be successful.

But this post offers a front and center description of owning and operating a corn maze, which is worth reading. 

Adding a pumpkin patch with cut your own options, hayrides, games, and additional services will further increase your sales.

cartoon of tractors in a field

Of course, you need to own the property and reside in an area conducive to corn growth.

But if you meet those requirements there is substantial opportunity for a lucrative business.

This article provides further information on how to start and operate a corn maze.

68. Tour Guide

There are numerous quaint small towns in America with a story to tell.

A part of history, interesting facts, a memorable event, there is no end to the possibilities.

You need a client base, so I recommend considering the following:

 1

Is your location a tourist attraction? & What monumental events or landmarks are present in your area?

 2

How will you generate customers?

3

What will you charge? & How will you promote your business?

Length of time and means of transportation should also be well thought out before you begin this rural and small town business idea in 2022.

Startup costs average $2000+.

But there is the potential to earn over $50,000/year, as per this article.

And this post offers additional ideas on how to make this business plan a worthwhile investment.

69. Bed & Breakfast

Projected to grow at a rate of 4.4% between 2020-2024 despite the rise of Airbnb's now is a great time to consider opening your home as a Bed and Breakfast.

The typical B&B is never at full capacity all year long.

But owners capitalize on the high seasons and earn enough profit to cover and maintain operating costs throughout the leaner months. 

With a gross profit margin over $30,000, owning a Bed and Breakfast is a profitable and sustainable business venture, as outlined in this publication

Costs range from $20,000-$50,000/room to fully optimize your home as Bed and Breakfast as per this article.

Reside in an area that draws in tourists?

Is there a market for your services ?

If you do check out this post outlining how to open Bed and Breakfast for maximum profit.

Chapter 8

Professionals

More people relocating to small towns and rural America.

So it stands to reason that there will be an increasing need for professional service providers.

You need to have the appropriate credentials and certifications for the positions listed in this section. 

Research your area to access the current competition and ascertain if there is a demand for your commerce.

Here are a few growing industries in rural America for professionals to consider.

70. Public Notary

A projected of income of $36,000+.

And a growth rate of 3%-7% between 2020-2022.

Means the need for public notaries continues to rise in the professional service sector.

This article offers the inside track on how to become a public notary. 

With limited services available to small-town and rural Americans, this idea is worth investigating further.

There is a potential demand for your skills, as outlined in this publication.

picture of a scale

71. Lawyer

It's doubtful that rural America is a hot spot for criminal or corporate lawyers, but there will always be a need for family council and estate planners.

Revenue growth is slated to rise between 5.5-6% in 2021, so the demand for this service industry remains steady.

Consider your population-size, demographics, income, etc. 

What if any competition is already prevalent in the area you are considering?

Obviously, you need to have completed the required study and exams for this position.

But if you're interested in opening a private practice in a small town, this article offers some additional information.

72. Financial Advisor

Generating an average annual income of $124,140, the CAGR for financial planners is forecast to grow 15% from 2016-2026.

People residing in small towns have money they are looking to invest just as much as urban dwellers. 

Chasing Money

Consider your target market and analyze the competition.

Technological advancements have created a no-boundaries environment, which is highly beneficial for those employed in this field.

Check out this publication, which highlights current trends and the growing need for individuals in this industry.

Are you a financial planner looking to relocate to a small town?

Then you need to check out this article.

73. Real Estate Agent/Broker

Despite the doom and gloom predictions of the real estate industry, recruitment is projected to see an increase of 11% by the end of 2022.

The unemployment level is dropping in the United States.

Add in advantageous mortgage rates and there remains a steady demand for real estate agents and brokers. 

What is changing is the mechanics of the transaction.

cartoon of a real estate agent shaking hands with home buyers

Technology is shifting the parameters.

Agents who wish to remain unbeaten in this market will need to keep on top of current trends as per this publication

In a small town where people are looking to relocate, there will be an ever-present need for real estate agents.

This article offers information that may be helpful in determining if this is a business opportunity suited to your prerequisites.

cartoon of a man in a computer

74. Accountant/Bookkeeper

Accounting/bookkeeping has seen a steady growth rate of 2.5% for the last five years.

Projected to grow at a rate of 10% by 2026, there continues to be a demand for this service.

People are willing to pay for your knowledge and expertise as per this publication.

Most businesses and individuals depend on the skills of persons in the accounting industry. 

Tied closely to the economy, coupled with baby boomers relocating it's time to consider this rural and small town business idea in 2022.

This article offers an interesting analysis of current trends and market predictions, and here's a helpful article on how to start a bookkeeping business.

75. Funeral Celebrant

The funeral industry is undergoing drastic changes.

Despite a reduction in unemployment, the reality is that the majority of Americans continue to live paycheck to paycheck.

Funerals are a pricey affair, and many people are turning to the more cost-effective option of cremation.

While funeral homes reluctantly drag their feet to keep up with this transition, independent funeral celebrants are offering their services based on an hourly or by-event rate. 

Costs are reported to be between $600-$1300/event as per this post.

This article outlines the future of the funeral home and suggests that this is an ideal time to consider becoming a funeral celebrant.

Your income will be based on the number of deaths you oversee.

But with the potential to earn $20,000-$70,000+/year, it is probable that you will be able to generate a significant income with this suggestion.

 And this article offers further insight into how to become a funeral celebrant.

cartoon of a woman planning a wedding

76. Wedding Planner

There are an estimated 2.5 million weddings in the USA every year.

And wedding planners are in constant demand.

Projected to see an annual  growth rate of 10% between 2016-2026 Americans continue to utilize this service.

Wedding planners residing in rural American can expect to earn between $10,000-$25,000+/year as per this publication.

A few things to consider before launching this endeavor:

  • Is there a demand for your service in the area you reside?
  • What is the competition, and how will you set yourself apart?
  • How will you market your services?
  • What will you charge per event?

This article provides additional material on how to become a wedding planner.

Chapter 9

Home

Life is hectic for Americans, no matter where you live.

Many homeowners take pride in being able to address issues around their homes independent of service providers.

Except when they can't. 

Some jobs simply require professional intervention. 

Listed below are some of the best rural and small town business ideas in 2022 to consider.

77. Cleaning Service

The cleaning sector is a profitable market encompassing maid services, commercial cleaners, and janitorial staff.  

Not to mention niche specific cleaning services, such as construction cleanup or a foreclosure cleaning business.

With a projected CAGR of 6.2% by 2022, this $74+ million industry is a lucrative business venture.

Consider these statistics and demographics:

  • People over the age of 45 collectively represent 22-32% of the cleaning market.

  • 24% of cleaning services are outsourced.

  • 36% of janitors are employed in buildings and dwellings.

  • Is there a demand for this service in your area?

  • Will you service residential cleaning, commercial cleaning, foreclosure cleaning, or industrial property?

  • What is the competition?

  • What would your rates be, and how would you market your services?

More disposable income means potential to generate substantial profits in this industry.

Check out this publication for additional statistical analysis and income potential.

With a potential gross profit margin of 15%-20+% , this post offers information on how to start a cleaning company.

78. Roofer

There is an ever-increasing need for qualified roofers in the United States, as demonstrated in this publication.

The projected growth rate for the industry is under 1%, but whether it be repair and maintenance or a full refurbish of an existing roof.

This is still one of the best rural and small town business ideas for 2022 as there will always be a demand for roofers no matter where you live.

cartoon of a variety of houses

But you need to stay on top of your numbers.

And keep careful track of your costs to generate the highest ROI possible, as outlined in this informative article. 

Roofing companies can earn a gross profit margin between $50,000-$500,000+ if you understand the business and have a concrete strategy.

This article offers further advice on how to start a roofing company, which may be helpful.

79. HVAC Service

If you have the required certifications and skills, the demand for HVAC businesses in the United States is climbing by leaps and bounds.

The field is predicted to see a growth of 21% by the end of 2022 as per this publication.

Valued at $11 billion, this industry is forecast to be worth more than $15 billion by 2025.

Making now a great time to consider a career in this profession. 

With a CAGR of 6.73% between 2020-2025, the annual income for an HVAC technician in the USA is $41,000-$53,000+.

This post advises the steps required to become a licensed HVAC technician.

And how you can utilize your trade and techniques to generate a lucrative income for yourself no matter where you live.

This article will help you start an HVAC business.

cartoon of a man sawing wood

80. Carpenter

Projected to grow at a rate of 4-8% by 2028, there is no shortage of employment available for trained carpenters.

With the construction industry on the rise and an increasing number of individuals looking to build their 'dream homes,' the market is booming

Carpentry is part of the construction industry, which is valued at $1.2 trillion.

Experienced carpenters generate an annual income between $36,000-$48,000+.

This article offers further information on how to become a carpenter

81. Handy-Person

Everyone could use the expertise of a handy-person from time to time.

With an aging population less inclined or able to do odd jobs and menial tasks around their homes, there is a steady demand for handyman services in the United States.

The industry is expected to increase by 3.4% in 2022, with the average annual income between $35,000-$40,000+. 

cartoon of a man with a shop vac cleaning a floor

Minimal costs ($1000) are associated with this startup.

There are also numerous franchise options available, which you can learn more about here.

Interested? 

Check out this publication for tips and tricks on starting a handy-person business.

82. Lawn Care

The landscaping industry is a cut-throat market, and life in a small town can exacerbate the competition.

The projected growth rate for lawn care business is slated to increase by 1.6% in 2022 and surpass annual revenues of $75 billion.

There is money to be made in this industry, even in rural America, as per this publication.

picture of a lawnmower and gardening tools

The key to your success will be to understand your target market, income, demographics, and how you will set yourself apart from the competitors. 

Not everyone has the time or the green thumb necessary to maintain their property and happily outsource their lawn and garden care.

Read this article for suggestions on how to come out on top.

And you stand to earn an annual income between $5000-$250,000+.

83. Plumbers & Pipefitters

New construction and building maintenance are the cornerstones to determine if there are a demand for plumbers and/or pipefitters in the area in which you reside.

With a projected growth rate of 14% between 2018-2028 employment opportunities are on the rise if the demographics of your location comply with these requirements:

  • Is there new construction?
  • Are there sufficient buildings requiring ongoing maintenance and regular servicing from plumbers or pipefitters?
  • What-if any-is the competition?

Entry-level posts start at $20,000, and the more experience you have, the more you are eligible to make upwards of $87,000/year as per this publication.

An apprentice based position, if interested, you can learn more about becoming qualified here.

If you have the qualifications already, here is a good article to help you start a plumbing business.

84. General Contractor

Construction-specifically private home dwellings-is accelerating in the United States.

A stable economy backed by the government's plans to revamp our nation's depleted infrastructure supports growth in the industry of around a CAGR of 2.2%. 

General contractors are slated to see an increase in net revenue of 3%+ for 2021 securing the market for continued advancement. 

There is a demand for general contractors in rural and small towns.

This article shares relevant statistics with regards to general contractors that are definitely worth reading if you are considering this opportunity. 

The biggest challenge will be finding qualified and reliable laborers to complete the jobs, as evidenced in this post

85. ELECTRICIAN

America is facing an electrician shortage.

This industry is projected to grow at a rate of 10% between 2018-2028. 

And the reality is there is an increasing need for skilled electricians, as evidenced within this article

The face of electricity is changing to coincide with rapid technological advancements.

Making this both an exciting and lucrative rural and small town business idea in 2022.

cartoon of a man helping a lady around her home

Economic rise is creating a resurgence in the construction industry.

And qualified electricians will soon be able to name their place and price with regards to employment.

With an average annual salary between $56,000-$91,000+.

This post suggests that electricians owning their own business will very shortly have the potential to earn upwards of $150,000-$200,000+.

cartoon of a man in a harness washing windows

86. Window Cleaning

The window cleaning industry.

An ambitious but insanely profitable business venture.

If you're good with people, offer quality service, and can secure a recurring client base.

With a projected growth of around 6% by the end of the year, this opportunity has minimal start-up costs associated with it-under $1000. 

You can earn over of $30,000-$50,00+ as per this post.

But you need to consider your target market, economic status, demographics, and current competition.

How you set yourself apart will be crucial to your prosperity.

This article, despite the sales pitch, offers further industry information and statistics.

87. Gutter Cleaning

This seasonal employment comes with its challenges.

But can be a moneymaker if you know what you're doing and can effectively market your services.

The biggest obstacle is the weather.

The demand for gutter cleaning services is a spring and fall based enterprise, but with the potential to earn $125-$175+/job. 

Capitalize on this venture during the high-demand season and you have the potential to make a sustainable income for the remainder of the year. 

cartoon of a man cleaning gutters

Here is a publication worth reviewing, outlining some of the pros and cons found within this industry.  

There is growth projected in this field, and this article offers some additional information.

With minimal startup costs ($2000+) gutter cleaning can be a decent income-generating career.

Check out this post for details on how to start a gutter cleaning service.

88. Painter

The overall forecast for employment opportunities in the painting industry appears promising.

With a projected growth rate of 6% from 2018-2028, there are a few things to consider before determining if this occupation is a good fit for your rural area or small town.

  • What if any is the competition?
  • Do you live close to a border where immigrant workers are prevalent and may drive down the cost of labor?
  • Is there a demand for your services?
  • What will your rates be?
  • Who is your target market?
  • How will you market your brand?
  • Are you in good health and of a viable age to perform the arduous tasks associated with this line of work?

The average paint contractor earns between $36,000-$60,000/year.

And this article provides valuable information if you're interested in this rural and small town business idea in 2022

Check out this article to learn how to start an independent painting company.

89. Pest Control

Rural America attracts more than just residents looking for a more relaxed and low-key atmosphere.

Like anywhere in the United States, we share our land with the animals who call it home.

All well and good until one of them decides not to stay in their lane, creating the need for pest control services.

cartoon of a shield with a pest crossed out

With profit margins ranging from 7%-20%, this $9 billion industry is increasing at a projected rate of 4.4%

The market's competitive but careful planning and a solid business plan could equate to profits above $75,000/year.

Want more information?

This article offers an inside scoop on how to build and brand a lucrative pest control business.

90. Professional Organizer

TLC's 'Hoarders' has resulted in quite the stir among Americans.

And there is an increasing need for the skills and services of a professional organizer.

The industry saw a growth rate of over 200% in 2020, and reports indicate that demand will remain consistent.

People have too much stuff and not enough time. 

cartoon of a before and after closet reorgnizing

Willing to pay between $55-$100+/hour outsourcing the tedious task of decluttering and organizing results in an average of $480/job.

Is there is a demand for this rural and small town business idea in 2022 where you live?

Access the competition and demand and get your credentials in order.

This article outlines how you can obtain your certification online and set yourself apart from your competitors.

Here is a publication providing additional information on starting a professional organizing business.

Chapter 10

The Internet & Social Media

In a world fueled by technological advancement, it doesn't matter if you live in rural America or Timbuktu.

If you have reliable internet access, the knowledge and wherewithal there is no limit to opportunity. 

With numerous online and virtual employment opportunities, emerging daily now is the perfect time to enter into this exciting and lucrative industry.

Here are a few of the hot ticket rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

They can be performed remotely and offer the potential to generate a significant income.

90. Software & Applications Analyst

With a projected growth rate of 24% by 2026, there is an increasing demand for software analysts.

Numerous remote opportunities are available as per this post.

The operating profit for software analysts grew 8.16% in 4 Q 2019, skyrocketing revenue 8.31% as per this publication.

An average annual salary between $90,000-$103,000+.

Makes this a phenomenal opportunity for individuals residing in a small town with the necessary commuter skills and reliable internet.

91. Python Developer

Python developers are one of the most sought after software developers worldwide.

Everyone and their cousin love this programming language and are willing to pay to the tune of $75,000-$127,000/year for individuals possessing the skills necessary to design and implement this technology. 

Used by big industry names like Google, Reddit, and Facebook, the projected growth rate for this market, is 19% as per this publication.

But you need to know more than just the basics to land a job in this competitive industry.

cartoon of a woman sitting on top of a computer with a laptop

But if this is your jam, the world is your oyster, with countless jobs posted online.

Here is a list of recommendations to find employment as a Python developer if you have the skills, and this career path is of interest to you.

Or, if your skills are strong enough, put a team together to solve a problem by starting your own software company!

92. Virtual Assistant

For the majority of American business owners having a virtual assistant doesn't just make sense, it makes dollars and cents.

More cost-effective than retaining an in-house employee.

Virtual assistants take care of everything from mundane tasks-responding to emails, blog posts, scheduling, etc., to being the linchpin for running a smooth enterprise. 

cartoon of a woman with a headset

Able to work from home around your schedule, virtual assistants have the potential to earn $10-$50+/hour.

This article is a business owner based perspective.

But it offers informative documentation to support why you should consider this profession. 

There are countless ways to market yourself and your services.

And this post provides a straightforward synopsis of how to embark with this rural and small town business idea in 2022.

93. Freelance

Freelancing is the future of tomorrow.

With statistics supporting evidence that 50% of the American population will be freelancing in some capacity by the end of 2021 as per this publication.

There has never been a more advantageous time to consider this opportunity. 

With the potential to earn more than 70% of the American population, freelancers typically charge on an hourly or by-assignment basis.

And can make anywhere from $28-$100+/hour depending on their skill set and the job they are hired for. 

Whether you reside in rural America or a bustling metropolis, the chance to generate employment is limitless.

And there are numerous websites offering job postings consistently. 

Check out this post for a list of the top contenders if you are interested in pursuing this idea.

94. Copywriter

Projected to see a growth rate of 7.6% between 2016-2026 and the potential to generate an income of $25-$25,000/page.

Copywriting is quickly becoming one of the most significant online employment opportunities worldwide.

It's a multi-million dollar industry.

If you possess writing skills and do it well, then this is a highly advantageous time to be a copywriter. 

cartoon of a man struggling to write copy

This article provides an informative analysis of how much you should charge for your services.

And with an endless supply of job openings on numerous online platforms, you could also create a website and market your brand. 

You work remotely, making this rural and small town business idea in 2022 suggestion is available to Americans regardless of geographical location. 

Check out this post outlining how to start a copywriting career with little to no out of pocket expense.

cartoon of a man with a magnifying glass checking web sites

95. Web Design

Business owners understand that in the age of online enterprises and insane competition, there is no other option but to have a website.

Many either do not have the time or skills required, so they rely on web designers to construct and maintain their virtual presence. 

Web design has a projected growth rate of 4% for 2021, confirming that the demand for this service continues to be prevalent in the United States. 

With an estimated gross profit margin of approximately, 70% this competitive industry requires a skilled and aggressive edge if you hope to outshine your competition.

If this rural and small town business idea in 2022 is up your alley.

Consider the following:

Who will be your target market?

How will you market yourself and your brand?

What will your rates be?

What will you offer that your competitors do not?

This article offers solid advice on how to be prosperous in this endeavor.

And with the potential to earn an average annual salary of $48,000+, this publication provides additional considerations.

96. Graphic Designer

Graphic design is riddled with potential.

With average annual earnings above $50,000, this is a lucrative business opportunity.

One that can be performed remotely if you set yourself up for success correctly.

A competitive industry you need to determine your target market and be willing to advertise yourself and your skills. 

Projected to grow at a rate of 3% in 2021, this publication provides insight with regards to current trends and opportunities to generate a substantial income from this endeavor.

This article offers additional information on sites currently accepting applications from online graphic designers.

image of social media icons

97. Social Media Manager

Social media can reach people from every corner of the world.

With a projected growth rate of 35% between 2013-2020, this 24+billion industry is responsible for 21.3% of ad spend in the United States.

A lucrative business venture, there are numerous online opportunities to earn $50,000+/year, even if you live in a rural area.

It's cutthroat, no question.

But if you have the skills and chutzpah to make a name for yourself and edge out the competition, you have generous cash flow on your hands.

This article offers further insight into how you can enter the exciting role of a social media manager.

98. SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

A gorgeous website without SEO is similar to a luxury sedan parked in your drive without any gas.

This metaphor never gets old.

It encapsulates the necessity for SEO in language the average business owner understands.

vector of a rocket launching over a computer with people working on a website

With online options readily available as outlined in this post, this remote job has the potential to generate an annual salary averaging $50,000-$80,000+. 

With a market valued at over $80 billion, this is an extremely profitable industry, and the demand for strategists continues to grow.

Online presence utilizing SEO see 50-90% of web traffic-big bucks for business owners.

Fast-paced and continuously changing, this article offers insight into hot SEO trends for 2022 that any marketer should be well versed in to remain valuable in this industry.

cartoon of star reviews on the internet

99. Reputation Manager

Those 'likes' and gold stars can make or break a business.

A poor customer review is an inevitable part of the game, but it creates a need for countermeasures.

Now we're not suggesting guerrilla warfare.

But having a reputation manager on their side provides business owners the peace of mind.

And they can continue doing what they do best-running their business. 

Valued at over $5 million, 85% of consumers trust online reviews as much or more than personal recommendations as per this publication.

There is a continued demand for this position, which offers the potential to earn $31,000-$95,000/year.

This article has some fantastic statistics for individuals interested in this market.

And remote jobs can be pursued on sites such as this making this one of the best rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

100. AFFILIATE MARKETING

Forecast to be valued at $6.8 billion by the end of 2021, affiliate marketing is growing at a projected rate of 2%.

Americans enjoy the convenience of affiliate marketing with 70% of traffic derived from mobile devices.

cartoon of two men shaking hands after a business deal

It's easy and on the go consumerism.

And has the potential to generate significant earning potential for individuals successful with this business model. 

Check out this article I posted outlining the best affiliate marketing programs for a better understanding of the process. 

Essentially you are receiving monetary compensation to sell other people products.

But with numerous platforms available such as Amazon Associates, or Shopify Affiliates, this is an opportunity to make a ton of money. 

Consider these statistics as per this publication:

  • Affiliate programs equate to 23% of sales for brands utilizing this model.

  • 15% of revenue generated from the digital media market is a direct result of affiliate marketing.

  • 58+% of purchases are performed from mobile devices.

With the potential to earn $1000-$7000+/month this is a highly advantageous opportunity.

And a rural and small town business idea in 2022 worth considering. 

101. Dropshipping

Dropshipping continues to be an advantageous opportunity.

And a way to generate a substantial income from the comfort of your home.

With a projected growth rate of 20% in 2021, selling third party products without ever touching an item is the way of the future.

You need to invest time and some capital to establish success with this model.

It's not just a question of building a website and dumping merchandise. 

You need to market your brand and advertise yourself.

Here is an article I published recently outlining the how-to's of becoming prosperous with dropshipping.

There are numerous selling platforms such as Shopify, and AliExpress.

And with the potential to earn $200-$3000+/month, this suggestion has the potential to be extremely profitable.

cartoon of a computer and a grad cap

102. English As A Second Language

Teaching English as a second language is a growing industry with a constant demand for new teachers.

With the potential to earn $13-$25+/hour, there are positions for individuals with and without credentials.

While it is a bonus to possess a Bachelors' Degree, for many companies, it is not a mandated requirement.

There is the option to obtain your TEFL certification online, which you can learn more about here

Keep in mind that the more qualified you are, the higher rate of income you can generate.

Here is a list of several online options currently seeking recruits.

But with over 2 billion people currently learning English online now is an ideal time to capitalize on this market.

This article offers some additional facts if this suggestion appeals to you.

103. Online Tutor

Estimated to be worth more than $120 billion at the end of 2021.

The online tutoring industry is predicted to see a growth rate of 12.75% through 2021, expanding at a rate of roughly 6.2%/year. 

With gross profit margins sitting between 60-90%, there are minimal costs associated with this business model.

If you have patience and advanced knowledge of a subject, there are numerous avenues to acquire employment, as evidenced by this post. 

And with kids trying to play catch up after lockdowns and quarantines, now is a great time to consider this rural and small town business idea.

Net profits equate to 2-10%. But the market is growing at a steady rate, and this is a rewarding career both monetarily and scholastically.

A job you can start a tutoring business from the comfort of your home, you have the potential to teach children and adult learners from around the globe.

Chapter 11

IMO The Best Rural & Small Town Business Idea In 2022

Lead Generation

Lead generation is all about getting qualified leads into the hands of business owners.

Building and ranking websites that act like digital real estate.

Get those sites to the top of the SERPs, and they're like billboards for business owners.

What Is Lead Generation?

You have over 400 niches to choose from. Every postal code is an opportunity. You can build your sites wherever you want, and you can build as many as you like.

Once your sites start getting calls to take those leads and sell them to local business owners.

The sites and the leads belong to you, so you're in charge of the payment plan, and you can pick any way you want.

From flat fee and commission to rev share and arbitrage, there's no wrong answer with this. And once you have a business owner, you get money coming in month after month on autopilot. 

Just like this tree site I built in 2015. One of my first sites, and it's been making me $2000/year for over six years.

local lead generation example

Why Lead Generation Works:

  • Lead generation is six simple steps.
  • The market isn't saturated like other online ventures.
  • It's not rocket science, and you don't need to be tech-savvy.
  • Heck we have grannies in our program killing it right now.
  • You don't need to be an SEO master or a web designer.

We have over 7000 members enrolled in our program currently, people from all walks of life.

Some had a ton of experience coming in-others were greener than your back field.

But if you're willing to trust the process and commit to following the training, you will be successful with this business model.

Lead generation takes hustle. But you don't need to host parties or sell products to your family and friends.

You're helping local business owners in an economy riddled with uncertainty and carving out a passive income for yourself.

Like the sound of this? Interested in learning more?

If you have questions or want additional information click the link below and book a call today.

Nothing compares to life in a small town. 

With the advancement of technology comes countless opportunities allowing individuals the ability to have their cake and eat it too.

By no means a definitive list I would love to hear your suggestions on the top rural and small town business ideas in 2022.

So feel free to leave them in the comment section below.

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Ippei Kanehara
Founder/CEO

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses

Ippei.com is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

His #1 online business recommendation in 2022, is to build your own lead generation business.

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    1. Hey thanks so much for your kind words. My goal is to share valuable content so I’m pleased to hear you enjoyed the post. Any business idea in this list grab your attention?

  1. Bravo! It has been simply incredibly generous with you to provide openly what exactly many individuals would’ve marketed for an ebook to end up making some cash for their end, primarily given that you could have tried it in the event you wanted.

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