To start a business (and succeed at it), you need — apart from starting capital, a business plan, organizational skills, a strong work ethic, common sense, a flexible labor market, a favorable tax climate, and (if it’s not too much to ask) good health and education — to dream big, or go home.
So, what do budding entrepreneurs dream of when they want to start a business? At the beginning of this year, start-up facilitator Zen Business investigated which keywords people across the world search for online in combination with their local language equivalent to the term “start a business.”
The results are herded together into 11 color-coded categories, including Food & Drink, Beauty & Cosmetics, and Logistics & Infrastructure. And the winner is Clothing. But not by far. It’s the most popular option in just 22 countries worldwide, followed hot on its Louboutins by Real Estate (19 countries).
The real fun is comparing the actual top answers per country — the similarities, but most of all, the differences. Let’s have a continent-by-continent look at the results.
Europe: real estate, tourism, clothing — and scrap metal
If anything has reliably grown in Europe over the past decades, it’s house prices — hence, the popularity of real estate as the first preference of those aiming to start a business (in Germany, but also Iceland, Estonia, Croatia, Montenegro, Greece, and Cyprus). Clothing and fashion are popular choices across the continent, from Portugal to Finland. Various personal services industries are number one in France, the UK, Czechia (all cleaning), Spain (laundry), and Latvia (sewing).
Don’t think that the aspiring Italian businessmen and women are too refined. Their number one business ambition is not dealing in designer gear but handling scrap metal. However, the prize for Europe’s least ambitious business dream arguably goes to the Maltese. More than anything else, they would like to start a phone case business. Come on, Malta: being small doesn’t mean you can’t dream big!
North America: retail, cleaning, recycling, and lip gloss
Retail and e-commerce are the most popular queries when starting a business — hence, the popularity of clothing (Canada, Mexico, and elsewhere) and food (Cuba, Costa Rica, and more). In that sense, the U.S. preference for a service industry (cleaning) is atypical. Two even more remarkable outliers are in the Caribbean: Jamaica, where would-be entrepreneurs see lip gloss as the ticket to corporate success, and Haiti, where it’s recycling. As Zen Business knows: “In Haiti, recycling entrepreneurs earn an average of $3,000 a year by collecting plastic and trading it into the Plastic Bank, an international corporation that offers money and other benefits in exchange for waste.”
South America: food, clothes, security
What South America lacks in diversity, it gains in focus. Local start-ups know what they’re good at — or want to be good at either food (from sweets in Brazil and baked goods in Venezuela to fast food in Chile) or clothing.
Suriname is the odd one out, a position that it’s well accustomed to, as one of only two non-Latin countries in South America. Here, “security” is the most searched for start-up business. It’s probably not a good sign when private security is a country’s most attractive career path. But if it keeps your family fed, who are you to complain?
The Middle East and Central Asia: food, coffee, and just about everything in between
The most discussed start-up in Israel is food, in Palestine, it’s software, in Lebanon it’s real estate, and in Jordan it’s delivery. In political terms, the locals don’t get along very well, but in economic terms, that combination of skills (or rather, ambitions) sounds like a business plan waiting to happen.
Tajiks and Kazakhs would like nothing more than to open a coffee shop. Saudis and Iraqis want to ship and trade. And Uzbeks? They dream of going into the soap business. As the local proverb goes: “An empty hand is no lure for a hawk.” Nor is a dirty one.
Azerbaijanis have a weirdly specific entrepreneurial preference: dropshipping. The term describes the job of a digital middle person who, in the words of a Wired article from 2020, “sell products they’ve never handled, from countries they’ve never visited, to consumers they’ve never met.”
Southeast Asia and Oceania: spices, software, and pig farming
Entrepreneurial ambitions across Southeast Asia and Oceania are extremely varied. Sri Lanka conforms to centuries-old stereotypes by preferring the spice trade. Conforming to a more modern one, business hopefuls in Taiwan are going for the software industry.
The most searched for start-up business in New Zealand is lawn mowing. (I never knew that Kiwis loved their plots of grass so much — or that tending to them was so profitable.) Other weirdly specific preferences show up in Nepal (the liquor trade), Bhutan (the perfume business), the Solomon Islands (pig farming), and Vanuatu and Nauru (t-shirt making).
However, nobody beats the future tycoons of the Philippines for the breadth of their business ambitions. Their preferred start-up industry? Sundry. Why pick a business when you can just let business pick you? Brilliant. Kim Kardashian would be proud.
Africa: photography, consulting, interior design, and M-Pesa
Which industry do business hopefuls across Africa research online? As you would expect from such a large and diverse continent, many different things. Retail and e-commerce are popular segments, ranging from enthusiasm for the point-of-sale industry in Nigeria to crafts in Angola and clothes in Mozambique.
The most popular choice in Kenya involves M-Pesa, a home-grown, mobile phone-based money transfer service now also popular in other parts of Africa (and as far beyond as Afghanistan). M-Pesa is a banking service without banks. Customers deposit and withdraw money from any type of trusted agent, ranging from phone time resellers to your local corner shop.
Recycling is the most popular option in several countries, from Mali to Mozambique. Amid relatively mainstream ambitions (real estate in Lesotho, import/export in Chad, cleaning in Senegal), the continent also has a few standout preferences for people with an entrepreneurial itch.
In the Gambia, it’s supplements. Somalians are keen on the consulting business. Namibians, perhaps not so surprisingly given the steady stream of tourists, want to go into photography. In South Africa, the dream career is that of a cooking gas refiller. And in hoity-toity Mauritius, it’s interior design.
Which business is more profitable in Ghana? Poultry farming. Number 1 on our list of most profitable business opportunities in Ghana would be poultry farming. Snail farming. One business with a faithful demand base is snail farming. However, as of February 2022, Construction is one of the biggest businesses in Ghana because of the ever-growing demand for residential properties and therefore building materials.
Below are some things that sell fast in most locations in Ghana;
- Health Products.
- Infant Or Baby Products.
- Kitchen Wears And Appliances.
- Cosmetic And Beauty Products.
- mobile Phone and Accessories.
Some Business Ideas You Can Start with Ghc100 or Less in Ghana
- Buy and sell domain names.
- Buy expired domain names and resell.
- Social media management.
- Setting social media profiles for others.
- Review products online.
- Write online articles.
- Become a Copywriter.
- Buy and Sell Phone Credit Cards.
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