Trends represent a shift in consumer needs and demands, and business ideas are often spurred by growing trends. It is important for home-based entrepreneurs to think beyond the common home business ideas out there and consider trending markets.
Trends represent the biggest demand, which in turn means healthy profits and bottom line. It is what consumers want, and what they are buying. Unlike fads which are short-live, trends have greater staying power.
Here are some growing trends that offer home business entrepreneurs with huge opportunities:
Trend: Healthy Living
Consumers are increasingly seeking active lifestyles and healthy food. More and more individuals are focusing on health, wellness, and active lifestyles. The health and wellness trend has seeped into a number of areas, including how people eat, where they shop, and what clothes they are wearing. People are becoming aware of the importance of getting fit and maintaining healthy lifestyles, while capabilities to track overall fitness have improved.
This growing awareness of the importance of living a healthy lifestyle has created opportunities for small business entrepreneurs. Here are some business ideas that are enjoying success due to the wellness and health sector:
- Fitness accessories, an example of which is Swiggies Wrist Water Bottles created by Julie Austin
- Employee wellness services and programs to help encourage employees to be healthy while reducing healthcare costs
- Fitness apps such as Hot5, SwimTag and RunKeeper
- Organic food, such as Amy’s Kitchen natural frozen food brand
- Personal fitness such as Alissa Harakal, a personal trainer in the Washington D.C. area
Trend: Sustainable and Ethical
Consumers have started to grasp the concept of sustainability. While many are still unable to change their consumption habits, an increasing number of people want to be “good.” They want to consume, but they want to do it guilt-free. And businesses are responding by providing eco-conscious products that will allow these consumers to indulge, but without the guilt.
Even high-fashion brands have adopted the trend: Gucci has been selling sunglasses and footwear made with biodegradable plastics. Stella McCartney uses biodegradable rubber soles with mock croc and faux leather uppers for her shoes. Products can be expensive and chic – but created with a view to sustainable living.
Some business ideas that follow the guilt-free trend include:
- Healthy foods that offer guilt-free indulgence
- Biodegradable clothing and accessories
- Ethical fashion
Trend: Mindful Living
One of the biggest trends in recent years is mindfulness. Mindful living is the craving for a sense of reflection and ease, far away from the overstimulation caused by everyday life. It is the desire to clear the clutter in the mind, find balance and life and focus on the present moment.
On the Web, a search of the term “mindfulness” in Google Trends shows a strong upward trend:
Some of the growing segments with regards to mindfulness practices include:
- Yoga and meditation such as the ideas mentioned in the 5 New Age Home Business Ideas
- Mindfulness and Emotional intelligence training programs – this is a good market for executive coaches and consultants
- Websites focusing on tools to help achieve mindfulness
- Accessories and fashion (e.g. for yoga practitioners)
The mobile device has reshaped communication. More and more people use mobile devices to keep connected and access the Web at anytime, anywhere. It helps empower people by giving them access to education, health, financial and other important tools. As a result, mobile is changing how businesses interact with their customers. For entrepreneurs who spend more time away from their desks, mobile devices have allowed us to do our business on the go.
Here are business ideas focused on the mobile trend:
- Mobile-ready websites, such as responsive web designs
- Location-based services
- Mobile security
- Mobile apps and games
Everyone is so connected to everyone, everywhere and every time. Advancements in technology and devices have made our connected lives possible. Business ideas based on newer technologies that are poised for mainstream adoption are clear winners, such as:
The huge wearable technology market is growing rapidly. There are two main types of wearable technology: devices; and apparel and textile. Some of the wearables include smart watches, glasses, jewelry, headgear, belts, armwear, wristwear, legwear, footwear, skin patches, exoskeletons and e-textiles.
The 3D printing industry is expected to rapidly grow in the next 3 years. This growth will be due to the availability of lower-priced 3D printers and affordable materials, which will widen the market for 3D printing.
Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality
There’s a lot of buzz and hype in virtual reality, with Facebook’s $2 billion purchase of Oculus, Google Glass and Microsoft’s HoloLens. There’s a lot of potential business ideas on the use of virtual reality for entertainment and games, virtual tourism, architectural previews, or even as empathy machine (e.g. experience a day in the life of a homeless person).
Recommended Books on Business Ideas and Trends:
- Minitrends: How Innovators & Entrepreneurs Discover & Profit From Business & Technology Trends: Between Megatrends & Microtrends Lie MINITRENDS, Emerging Business Opportunities in the New Economy
- The Business Idea Factory: A World-Class System for Creating Successful Business Ideas
- 201 Great Ideas for Your Small Business
- The Idea Hunter: How to Find the Best Ideas and Make them Happen
- 25 Money-Making Businesses You Can Start in Your Spare Time