11 Small Business Ideas in Singapore in 2023: Product and Service-based Options

Written by the Amazon Team
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is for your information only and must not be construed as a guarantee of future results or legal, tax or financial advice. Many factors influence the demand for your products, including price fluctuations and consumer demand shifts, and sellers remain responsible for determining the products they sell and their prices. If you are in doubt as to the action you should take, please consult your legal, financial, tax, or other professional advisers. The links provided are for information purposes only and Amazon does not warrant the accuracy of any information provided in these links.

The pandemic may have allowed some of us to enjoy flexible working arrangements and pursue other interests, including starting a small business on the side, while still leaving time for our regular job.

To provide inspiration for those of you who are interested in exploring this possibility, we share 11 ideas for small businesses in Singapore that you can consider starting, including product and service-based options.

Under each option, an estimate of the capital investment and scalability potential are included. Capital investment refers to the upfront financial investment required to start the business (usually in cash), while scalability potential refers to the supposed ease of scaling the business.

Product-based small business ideas

Selling products is a way to start a small business.

It is generally easier to illustrate the value of physical products. However, the capital investment is often higher as most businesses involve the storage and delivery of goods

1. Online Store on Amazon Singapore

Capital investment: Low – high
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Over the past 5 years, revenue generated from e-commerce in Singapore has grown by almost 4 times. Setting up an online store on Amazon can, therefore, allow you to tap into this growing industry.

By selling on Amazon, you can get access to millions of customers worldwide and leverage our resources to grow your business. You can also customize your own selling journey by choosing to be a brand owner*, reseller, wholesaler or manufacturer.

Moreover, as a seller on Amazon Singapore, you can opt to do dropshipping. This means that you can sell products without holding any inventory on hand, and it can be a good option for those with limited capital and those who prefer less risk.

On Amazon Singapore, you can sell a wide range of items. If you need ideas, start with our guide on the trending products.

Start your selling journey on Amazon Singapore

Ready to start your e-commerce business? Register for a seller account on Amazon Singapore and start listing your products today. If you are planning to dropship, read our dropshipping policy to ensure that your business follows our regulations.
*As a brand owner on Amazon, you can enjoy access to a wide range of tools such as A+ content, Stores, Sponsored Brands and Brand Analytics.

2. Florist

Capital investment: Medium – high
Scalability potential: Moderate – difficult

Flowers may seem like a gift that is only popular on occasions like weddings or Valentine’s Day. Yet, they are great surprises and pick-me-ups for loved ones even without a special occasion and can be used to congratulate your family and friends on their milestones in life.

Moreover, flowers can be a wonderful decor item – they have the ability to make any home look lively and inviting.

If you have a gift for creating delicate and gorgeous bouquets, you can turn this talent into a small business.

3. Home bakery

Capital investment: Medium – high
Scalability potential: Moderate – difficult

Rather than opening a storefront, a home bakery may be the ideal way to start a small business as you can save on rental and labor costs. You can also enjoy flexible working hours, as long as you are able to fulfill your orders.

These handmade goodies make wonderful gifts for occasions such as birthdays, Valentine's Day and Christmas. They can even be used as wedding favors.

Before you jump into it, do note that there are certain criteria for setting up a home-based business in Singapore. Additionally, it is important to note that some upfront costs may be incurred when starting this business (i.e. baking tools and equipment). As your business flourishes, the cost of ingredients, utilities and delivery may increase accordingly.

Service-based small business ideas

If you prefer not to hold any inventory, why not consider service-based businesses? The cost of setting up is often low and scaling the business is generally easier. However, quantifying the value of services may be more challenging.

4. Consulting

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Consulting leverages the skills, knowledge and experience you gained from working in a particular industry to provide expert advice and recommendations to others. It requires little capital and can be relatively easy to kickstart.

However, before you begin, these are some questions you may want to consider:
  • Where does my expertise lie?
  • Has there been significant changes to the industry that I need to be aware of?
  • Do I have access to the tools and resources I need to provide these services?
  • How can I market my services to my target audience?

Get advice on your business from Amazon’s Seller Ambassadors

If you are starting a business on Amazon, get in touch with our Seller Ambassadors who are experts at selling on Amazon. They can offer advice based on their experience and share more about their selling journey with you.

5. Content creation

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Content creation is the production of written and visual content centered around a topic that appeals to your audience. This can be in the form of a blog post, social media post or video, among many others.

While this may not seem like a business idea, it is possible to earn money through streams such as advertising, sponsorships and affiliate marketing. Moreover, you can even transit to a product-based business by selling your own merchandise through Amazon stores once you have a significant following.

It is important to note, however, that the fruits of your labor may not be immediate when it comes to content creation. Additionally, competition can be intense in this industry so finding a niche and differentiator is often crucial.

Monetize your traffic with our Amazon Associates Program

Did you know that you could leverage your audience to maximize your earnings through the Amazon Associates Program? Earn up to 10% commission* with just 3 simple steps:
  1. Register as an Amazon Associate
  2. Share your favorite products with your audience using unique links
  3. Earn a commission on qualifying purchases made by your audience and maximize your revenue
*Terms and conditions apply

6. Digital marketing

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Also known as online marketing, digital marketing refers to activities carried out through the internet to promote goods and services to existing and prospective customers. It can be segmented into 5 main channels:
  • Search marketing
  • Social media marketing
  • Digital messaging
  • Digital partnerships
  • Digital public relations (PR)
In Singapore, the amount of money spent on advertising within the digital marketing industry has been growing year on year. By 2027, ad spending is expected to reach US$2.33 billion, showcasing the importance of digital marketing for businesses and presenting an opportunity for those keen to start a small business in this industry.

7. Event planning

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Moderate – difficult

In our lives, there are many events worth celebrating such as birthdays, wedding proposals and baby showers. If you enjoy planning and are meticulous about details, why not consider setting up a small event planning business?

As an event planner, you will have to organize every aspect of the celebration down to the tiniest detail. You will also need to liaise with a wide range of stakeholders including suppliers, logistics companies, caterers and photographers to make the important day a success.

8. Graphic design

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Graphic design is an important service sought after by many businesses. It involves the creation of visual content to communicate a message and is often a crucial element of business and e-commerce marketing due to its potential to capture the attention of the audience.

Graphic designs can be used in many areas such as digital advertisements and social media marketing. It can also be used in branding for the creation of a logo or mascot.

9. Laundry services

Capital investment: Medium – high
Scalability potential: Moderate – high

While laundry is one of the most essential chores in any household, it is often a hassle and consumes time that can otherwise be used more efficiently. As such, it is no surprise that homeowners are turning to laundry services to get this task done, presenting you with a great business opportunity!

However, setting up a laundry business can be more challenging than other business ideas due to the capital required. The initial cost may be high due to the physical space and laundry equipment needed to provide the service. Scaling the business may also be more difficult.

10. Tutoring

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

Since 2012, the amount spent on tuition and enrichment classes in Singapore has been increasing. This is driven by the competitive education landscape, where parents are eager to give their children an edge over others.

The growing demand for tuition classes makes this an attractive business idea, provided you have the necessary knowledge on the subject.

Do note that some monetary investment is needed in the initial stages to purchase books and materials for the lessons. You may also need to spend some time crafting lesson plans for your students.

11. Web design

Capital investment: Low – medium
Scalability potential: Easy – moderate

In the present age, omnichannel retail is the key to increased sales and customer loyalty. To achieve this, there is a need to create a website that meets the needs of customers and is integrated with other business channels and operating systems.

If you have the skills and knowledge needed for web design, you can leverage this trend to start your own small business offering this service.

As constant upgrading and maintenance of the website are important in ensuring a positive customer experience, you are likely to be engaged by your clients for the long term if you are able to meet their expectations.

FAQs about small businesses in Singapore

What are some small online businesses to start in Singapore?
Examples of small online businesses you can consider include:
● Consulting
● Content creation
● Digital marketing
● Dropshipping
● E-commerce
● Graphic design
● Tutoring
● Web design
How do I start a small business in Singapore?
If you are keen to start a small business in Singapore, these are the general steps to take:
● Step 1: Pick a business idea
● Step 2: Raise capital
● Step 3: Secure a business name
● Step 4: Register the business
● Step 5: Apply for permits
● Step 6: Set up a business bank account
● Step 7: Find an office space
● Step 8: Hire employees
● Step 9: File corporate income tax

To ensure that your business is set up according to local regulations, it is recommended to consult a professional for advice on this process.
What are some grants for small businesses in Singapore?
When starting a small business in Singapore, you can leverage government grants and schemes such as the Startup SG Founder and Startup SG Tech.

Quick Survey

Let us know if you found this article useful.
© 2024, Amazon.com Services LLC.