20 Small Retail Shop Business Ideas in 2023

A retail shop business is one of the best ventures to start if you are completely confused about the industry but want to start a business soon. Like an online business, a retail shop business has its own pros and cons. But here, we will be discussing the positive side of the retail shop business and explore the same. Retail shops are easy to start and need minimal capital, depending on the items you want to sell. You won’t need a lavish ambiance like a hotel or restaurant; you can go with a simple store in your lane and sell items of your choice. 

You don’t need to spend considerable amounts on marketing as people will hop into your store as they notice it. The store banner itself and the prime location will be effective marketing tools, and you don’t have to promote it often. Moreover, some people prefer to buy from a retail store in India as it offers high brand value and convenience. Online shopping is cool, but you cannot go online every time you want a single pen or a fast-food item. Hence, no matter how digital technology expands its horizon, people will never stop coming to retail shops. 

If you are searching for a good and viable shop business idea in India, we have got everything covered. We will list out the top 20 shop business ideas as per the investment needed and income generated. Don’t worry; we will impart you with some tips on what you can sell and where to position your shop for more sales. 

Low-investment small shop business ideas 

These business ideas won’t occupy much of your bank balance. You can start it easily with INR 7000 to INR 20,000, depending on how much you can invest. These business ideas can help you earn around INR 10,000 to INR 30,000 monthly. 

1. Tea and coffee shop

You don’t need perfect timing to get a cup of hot, steaming tea and sip in India. Indians love their tea, and some even like coffees, and we promise you will always be in business, provided your tea has a pleasant aroma and a mesmerizing taste. It doesn’t take massive effort to start a tea shop; however, the location is of prime importance. Choose a bustling area in the city or town where people can easily see the shop. The tea and coffee quality is of utmost importance as no one likes to spoil their mood with a lousy beverage. So, work on it, try with a few varieties, and you are almost there! 

2. Fast-food outlet

Another shop business that is popular is fast-food selling Indian and other snacks. It could be chaat, dosa, momos, and pav bhaji. You can choose any item out of the list, depending on your culinary skills and your staff. Choose a good location. For example, a sandwich outlet is always busy around colleges and offices. Street food items never go out of the trend, and if you offer tasty dishes, people will always flock around your shop. The income is great and is sustaining one. 

3. Flower shop

Flowers don’t go out of the way; they are needed by people to express their feelings and for important functions. Hence, if you want to invest in an extremely low-cost business, a flower shop is the best option. You need to locate it near cafes and restaurants where couples generally spend time. You can accept online orders too, but in-person queries should be responded to immediately. 

4. A photocopy store

In India, school and college students hurry for photocopies, notes, and books during the exam season, and your photocopy or the popular ‘Xerox’ store comes to the rescue. You need to set it up near a school or a college. Even banks and government offices are a good option. Quick photocopying is what you need to do to be in business. 

5. A tiffin centre (daily meal outlet)

No, we aren’t talking about a meal delivery service because it won’t fall under the retail shop business. You can start a meal delivery service from your home itself, but a tiffin or meal outlet is where people can sit and have a quick lunch. You need to provide nutritious food. It doesn’t have to be special but should have all the nutritious dishes such as roti, subji, salad, rice, and dal. Position it near a business complex to help working professionals have a proper lunch every day. 

6. A store selling miscellaneous items

Well, there is no definite category or name for this kind of store. It sells miscellaneous items such as candies, pens, masks, and cell phone recharges. It can’t be called a convenience store as it is much tinier. It doesn’t sell grocery items, just regular items that people need. You can locate it near a railway station or a bus stop and sell things that people generally ask for at the store. 

7. A stationery store

This is a dedicated store for selling stationery items such as pens, pencils, notebooks, staplers, pins, etc. You can even include school and college textbooks in it to make it complete. The location should be perfect, of course near a school or a college. Ensure that the items are stocked during the peak season for students’ assistance. 

8. A newspaper and magazine store

Another low-cost shop business idea is to start a newspaper stall in your area. You need to assign your morning time for selling the same. Add a few good magazines like some people buy them fortnightly or monthly. The costs are less, and you can earn a decent income on a monthly basis. 

Medium-investment retail shop businesses 

These shop businesses require you to invest between INR 18000 to INR 30000, and you can expect a revenue of INR 20000 to INR 40000 on a monthly basis. 

9. A thrift store

Have you ever heard of Chor Bazaar? Well, a thrift store doesn’t always have to be of stolen items. It could be used-stuff or rejected products such as apparel, jewellery items, home décor, and so on. Thrift stores are popular amongst middle-class people in India as they can buy excellent items at reasonable prices. You can locate it at any good location of the city, no stress. But ensure you update your store, and the public is aware of your shop. 

10. A kid’s store

Kids’ stores can be huge, but even if you open a small one in your city and have all the essential items covered, you can do well. Ensure that you promote your store well and are properly stocked with items like diapers, toys, clothes, and others. You don’t need to have a huge variety, but stocking is important. 

11. A girl’s jewellery store

College-going schools do not wear gold jewellery due to chances of theft. They want to wear beautiful earrings and necklaces daily and not wear the same things in a monotonous way. If you like jewellery and can help girls and women select them, you can start a small jewellery store. Updating your products and being informed of the latest trends in artificial and imitation jewellery is crucial. 

12. A boy’s store

Women love shopping, but all boys have to shop. So, don’t forget their requirements and start a boys’ and men’s store depending on your budget. You can include items such as belts, accessories, T-shirts, shorts, and other items that boys usually need. The best thing is that you don’t have to worry about the variety factor here but ensure that you have good staff to sell items properly. 

13. A laundry store

In India, people usually prefer using washing machines or doing laundry at home. But since couples, parents, and single people work these days, they find it hard to achieve their laundry goals. So, they prefer to outsource this task to a laundry store and relax on weekends. You can open a laundry store in a residential area where you know maximum working people reside. Respect their time and charge reasonably, and they will be your lifetime customers. 

14. A bakery

A popular medium-investment business idea is to start a bakery if your area has none of them. You can apply your baking skills or hire skilled staff for the same. You can even tie up and coordinate with proficient home-based bakers in your area and make it more unique. Ensure that the food sold in the bakery is fresh and of high-quality ingredients. 

15. A grocery store

Even if you can find supermarkets and online grocery stores, one has to approach a grocery store in their area for emergency shopping. It could be a cup of sugar or a toothbrush; a grocery store fulfills all kinds of requirements. So, start a grocery store if you think that you can invest the requisite amount. Maintain all the products in stock, ensure there is a variety and provide home delivery to your regular customers. Excellent customer service is the key for a grocery store to be a hit in your area. 

16. An organic store

If you don’t wish to invest in a full-fledged grocery store but keep it minimal, you can start an organic store. It is a niche-based business that can yield higher revenue as people are going organic these days, even in India. You need to position this shop in a good location where people know what organic products mean and are interested in buying the same. 

17. A pharmacy store

A pharmacy store falls under the category of essentials, and you can always gain business. You don’t have to make it huge; keep it small and simple, and locate where you don’t find other pharmacy shops. Just overcome the competition, have all the medicines stocked and ensure the employee has a profound knowledge of basic medications. 

High-investment shop business ideas 

18. A cosmetic shop

As we said, women love shopping, and cosmetics and beauty products are something that they buy regularly. You can start a posh and well-equipped cosmetic store in your area if there is none. It is a good thing to have friendly employees in your shop as they will be the ones convincing and helping women buy beauty products. Include products of reputed brands and high quality. Do not try to sell low-quality items to earn profit as you will lose customers’ trust in your shop. 

19. A pet’s store

We have included this shop in high-cost investment ideas because pet accessories and products are expensive and need more money to invest. If you find more pets in your area and no related store, you can start one. You have scope to extend it with dog walking and other services but first, focus on the shop. 

20. A sports equipment shop

These days, people are getting into sports and fitness activities, and they need several products such as yoga mats, dumbbells, sports gear, fitness accessories, gym equipment, and so on. You can start such a store in your city if there aren’t sufficient or good ones. It fetches substantial revenue. Tie up with the gyms and fitness clubs to have more customers flooding your shop. 

The above 20 shop business ideas are excellent and viable for anyone with a specific amount of money to invest. 


1. What are some positive small retail shop business ideas for 2023?

Some positive small retail shop business ideas for 2023 include online subscription services, virtual personal shopping services, pop-up stores, niche market offerings, online craft product stores, custom curation services, specialty food stores, healthy snack boxes, used books and music stores, and green lifestyle products.

2. What are the best ways to market a small retail shop business in 2023?

The best ways to market a small retail shop business in 2023 include leveraging social media platforms, investing in SEO, content marketing and influencer marketing, developing an email list, setting up an online store, running online promotions and sales, and offering discounts.

3. What trends should small retail shop business owners be aware of for 2023?

Some trends that small retail shop business owners should be aware of for 2023 include cashless payments, emphasizing sustainability, offering digital experiences such as virtual reality, creating social experiences that draw customers in, utilizing AI and Machine Learning, and offering subscription services and business consulting services.

4. What are some tips for success for a small retail shop business in 2023?

Some tips for success for a small retail shop business in 2023 include creating a customer-centric experience, offering unique products and services, maintaining a presence on all popular social media platforms, engaging customers with effective messaging, optimizing the online shopping experience, investing in local SEO, and staying up-to-date on relevant industry trends.

5. What management strategies should be implemented in a small retail shop business in 2023?

Management strategies that should be implemented in a small retail shop business in 2023 include inventory management, budget management, employee training, customer service strategies, online store maintenance, and marketing strategies.

6. What are some ways to increase customer loyalty in a small retail shop business in 2023?

Some ways to increase customer loyalty in a small retail shop business in 2023 include offering loyalty rewards programs and discounts, providing personalized customer service, offering experiences that differentiate from competitors, creating a community with customers, providing convenient pick up and delivery services, and offering special perks for repeat customers.

7. What legal regulations do small retail shop businesses need to comply with in 2023?

Small retail shop businesses need to comply with all applicable federal, state, and local laws and regulations in 2023. These may include income and payroll taxes, health and safety regulations, employee labor laws, business licensing and permits, tax filing requirements, and privacy regulations.

8. What partnerships should small retail shop businesses consider in 2023?

Small retail shop businesses should consider forming partnerships with other small business owners, local organizations, and sponsors. These partnerships may include co-branding initiatives, influencer collaborations, strategically aligned product and service offerings, data sharing and cross-promotion programs, and customer referral agreements.

9. What technology should small retail shop businesses be leveraging in 2023?

Small retail shop businesses should be leveraging technology such as barcode scanners, customer-facing digital displays, point of sale systems, inventory tracking tools, customer relationship management software, and automated customer service systems.

10. What new trends in customer service should small retail shop businesses be aware of in 2023?

In 2023, small retail shop businesses should be aware of new customer service trends such as offering personalized AI-powered experiences, providing active customer feedback systems, utilizing voice assistants, using augmented reality and virtual reality technologies, proactively engaging customers, and utilizing social messaging channels.

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