Business Ideas to Start In South Africa


South Africa is one of the largest economies in Africa. According to the World Bank ranks, South Africa is listed as an upper-middle income economy. In light of this, it’s an ideal place to start a small business. Although a vast majority of the South African population is unemployed, there are still many business ideas that you can invest in. Nowadays, becoming your own boss is something that many people are interested in, and your wish can come true if you consider investing in either of the business idea discussed below. You will have flexible time and freedom to do whatever you want.

Why Starting a Business in South Africa ls, a Good Idea?

When most people hear about Africa, poverty is probably the first thing that they think about. It’s true that many African countries are struggling with poverty and unemployment including South Africa, but there are also many business ideas which are still unexploited. So, why is South Africa a great place to start a business? First, there's ready market and high demand for various goods and services. Secondly, there are many business opportunities to invest in. Thirdly, you don’t need a lot of money to start a business. Also, the economy of South Africa is admirable and it’s growing at an interesting rate. The rules and regulation set to start a business are also favorable.

10 Small Business Ideas to Start in South Africa

1. Mobile Restaurant

As long as we're still breathing we will always need food. The people of South Africa have to eat, and that's why food will always be in high demand. The mobile restaurant is a perfect business to start because it allows you to serve people with breakfast, lunch, and their favorite snacks. Also, you can go to several different places and serve as many people as you want. The most important thing is to prepare the best food possible. This way, you will attract more customers.

2. Clothing & Textiles

Clothing and textile is another profitable industry to invest in. There's a high demand for South African-made clothes in the country and also in the neighboring nations. In this light, if you believe that you have what it takes to start this type of business, then you should go for it. You can make a significant amount of money if you choose to try this business.

3. Online Retail Shop

According to a recent Google study, 50% of people search for products online before buying them. Also, they read the review left behind by previous buyers to see what they are saying about the product. The bottom line is a vast majority of people prefer shopping online, and South Africans are no exception. So, investing in this business idea can guarantee you success.

4. Agriculture

There's huge land in South Africa that's not utilized. Also, fresh agricultural products are in high demand and their production is low. As a new investor, this is a lucrative business idea that you can start. Agriculture is a business that you can start with little capital and expand as your business grows. You can specialize in crops production or rear animals like poultry or fishes. If you have enough funds, you can invest in both crops and animals.

5. Food Processing

Food processing is an industry that is currently doing very well in South Africa, but there's still huge demand that hasn't been met yet. This means that there is still enough room for you to invest. Additionally, there are many different products to try, including vegetables, fruits, animal products, juices and more.

6. Photographer

If you enjoy taking pictures and would like to start a career as a professional photographer, South Africa is a perfect place for you to start your career. Every year, there are many events that you can attend and ask for photography gig. Photography is currently a thriving business in South Africa and you can earn a lot of money if you find the right ways to penetrate the market. It’s also advisable that you start your own photo studio.

7. Party Entertainer

Today, there are many people who earn a good income just by entraining people. If you feel like you have what it takes to make people laugh or keep them preoccupied, you can turn your passion into a business. A good business idea is the one that you enjoy doing. Children are the best market for you to target. You can visit schools and talk to the administration and parents about your idea, and watch your new business grow.

8. Mobile Car Wash

Many drivers and car owners are used to visiting car wash to have their vehicles cleaned, but there are car wash services that can come to you at a location and time that's convenient for you. This means that you can have your car cleaned at home. For you to be successful in this business idea, you will have to invest in the right tools and market your services widely.

9. Online Marketing

Many businesses in South Africa are doing whatever they can to improve their online presence. In light of this, there's a high demand for online marketers such as website designers, SEO experts, social media consultants, and copywriters. If you have skills and sufficient knowledge in any field of online marketing, there's a huge market for you in South Africa. With the amount of money that companies are setting aside for online marketing, you're definitely going to be successful starting an online marketing business in South Africa.

10. Selling Technology-Based Products

As mentioned earlier, South Africa is among the leading economies in Africa. Technology-based products such as smartphones, personal computers, laptops, and tablets are in high demand in South Africa. As an investor specializing in these products, you can make significant profits by selling the most current products from top companies like Samsung, Apple, and Sony. You are also advised to invest in technology accessories, and offer repair services if you can.


If you are interested in starting a small business in South Africa, you can try the business ideas mentioned above. If you take your time to plan properly before investing, you can be sure that you are going to be successful doing business in South Africa.

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