Now is the best time to start a business. Apart from the growing Philippine economy, social media and the changing interests of consumers also influence the increasing demand for products and services. Filipinos are now more open to new brands and establishments, allowing the business industry to flourish more quickly.
Be your own boss and grow your finances by starting your own venture. Here are 15 small business ideas you can put up with a low capital of PHP 150 to PHP 350,000.
1. Home-Based Palamig Business
Startup cost: PHP 150 to PHP 3,000
Items to invest in: Ingredients (sago, gulaman, sugar, fruits, powdered drinks, etc.), purified water, containers, plastic cups
Selling ice-cold drinks is one of the low-cost yet profitable small business ideas in a tropical country like the Philippines. Palamig is a hit during summer but can be sold all year round, especially if you live near a school, church, or a commercial/office building. For as low as PHP 150, you can start selling palamig and earn around PHP 300 per container.
2. Costume Rental Shop
Photo by GoToVan via Flickr, Creative Commons
Startup cost: At least PHP 500
Items to invest in: Costumes, clothes racks, hangers
Costumes are popular not only during the Halloween season. People look for costumes any time of the year: office workers need them for corporate parties, cosplay enthusiasts wear them in anime and manga events, students need them for their school plays and activities, and even BPO employees hunt for costumes for their weekly contests.
Costume rental is one of the low-capital small business ideas in the Philippines. You may find cheap costumes in ukay-ukays or sew costumes yourself, if you already have sewing skills and machine. You may have old costumes sent by your relatives from abroad—you might want to rent them out and earn around PHP 500 per costume rental.
3. Cellphone Loading Business
Startup cost: PHP 2,000 to PHP 3,000
Items to invest in: Basic phone, retailer SIM card, starting balance of P500
Perhaps one of the easiest businesses to put up is a cellphone loading business. For as low as P2,000, you can start loading and earning at home or even at work. However, unlike other small businesses, don’t expect to earn much from this venture. As a load retailer, you get your earnings through a commission, which can be 3% to 13% per transaction. For example, a prepaid load worth P50 may deduct P47 from your load wallet, leaving you with a P3 profit. This, of course, depends on your chosen telecommunication company.
4. Cake and Pastry Business
Instagram photo by @itswenelen
Startup cost: PHP 3,000 to PHP 5,000 if you already have equipment. PHP 40,000 to PHP 50,000 if you still have to invest in equipment and materials.
Items to invest in: Oven, mixer, cake pans, cupcake liners, decorating tools, cooling rack, measuring spoons, mixing bowls
Do you like baking during free time? Why not turn your hobby into a business? A cake and pastry business is a great way to earn money even at home. With a low capital of PHP 3,000, you can start baking bread and cupcakes to friends and on social media. Start by determining the audience you wish to cater to (moms, children, companies, etc.) and attract them into your venture. Identify your specialty and let that be the highlight of your products. Don’t forget to find a supplier who can provide ingredients at a low price and build a Facebook or Instagram page to help you advertise your business.
5. Bills Payment Business
Startup cost: PHP 5,000 to PHP 45,000
Items to invest in: Point-of-sale (POS) device
Great small business ideas solve customers’ biggest pain points, like enduring long lines at payment centers to pay bills or send money.
You can run a digital payment business that offers bills payment, remittance, airline ticket booking, and mobile e-loading services to your neighborhood. This low-capital small business can earn you an average monthly income of PHP 10,000 and recoup your investment from one to eight months.
If you already own a sari-sari store, eatery, internet shop, or any small business, this is a great way to boost your income.
6. Outdoor Adventure Equipment Rental
Startup cost: At least PHP 10,000
Items to invest in: Tents, shoes, and other adventure gears and equipment
Do you live near an outdoor adventure destination? There are plenty of small business ideas to consider, one of which is renting out gears and equipment for outdoor adventures such as hiking, camping, swimming, or diving. It requires only a minimal investment to start, and can bring huge profits in peak seasons like summer and holidays.
7. Online Buy and Sell Business
Startup cost: PHP 10,000 to PHP 20,000
Items to invest in: Products for reselling, camera, computer, internet connection
One of the easiest ways to make money from home is to buy products in bulk at very low prices and sell them online at higher prices.
Clothes, shoes, bags, accessories, and beauty products are among the most sought-after items by online shoppers. You can buy cheap yet trendy RTW clothes from Taytay Tiangge or Divisoria, for instance, and then sell them via Facebook, Instagram, or online marketplaces like Lazada, Shopee, OLX, or eBay. Or you can set up your own website using an e-commerce platform like Shopify.
Invest in a camera that takes high-quality photos, so the products on your website will attract prospective customers.
8. Piso Wi-Fi Vending Machine
Startup cost: PHP 17,000 to PHP 30,000
Items to invest in: Internet hotspot device and unlimited broadband plan
It isn’t an exaggeration to say that Filipinos can’t live without internet—we spend an average of 10 hours online per day, according to the Digital in 2019 report.
Enterprising people can take this as an income-earning opportunity by running a piso Wi-Fi business that provides affordable internet connection. This low-capital business is cheaper to set up than an internet cafe. Simply purchase a coin-operated internet vending machine that serves as a hotspot and charge a fee per minute/s of internet use. For example, your rate could be PHP 1 per 5 minutes, PHP 5 per 30 minutes, or PHP 10 per hour.
Sales of a piso Wi-Fi business can go anywhere from PHP 6,000 to PHP 40,000 a month.
9. Custom Invitation Business
Startup cost: At least PHP 20,000
Items to invest in: Stationery paper, printer, ink, cutter, scissors, glue
Here’s a perfect small business idea for people who have talent in arts and design: create personalized invitations mostly for weddings and corporate events. You can start alone, taking small orders from close family and friends. When bulk orders come in, you’ll need to scale up your business by investing in better printing equipment and supplies and hiring an assistant or two.
Startup cost: PHP 20,000 to PHP 30,000+
Items to invest in: Vlogging camera, microphone, tripod, video editing software
Do you have a knack for hosting or storytelling? Be a vlogger—earn income using your talent and a few video production equipment with only a small capital.
You can start vlogging with a smartphone that can shoot high-resolution videos, create interesting content, and share your video on YouTube, Instagram, or your personal blog. Your content can be anything you’re passionate about, like travel, humor, or sports. Or you may want to share advice to fellow moms, makeup tutorials, or whatever you think is worth sharing.
To earn income through vlogging, sign up for a Google Adsense account and start earning from ads displayed on your videos.
11. Gift Basket Business
Startup cost: PHP 30,000 to PHP 50,000
Items to invest in: Baskets, gift items, cellophane, ribbon, gift tags, scissors
Are you the creative type? Do you enjoy preparing and wrapping gifts? Then making and selling personalized gift baskets may be one of the best small business ideas for you. Your customers will be mostly well-off people who are too busy to buy holiday gifts and companies that order gift baskets to be given away to their employees and clients.
Gift baskets are very easy to assemble. Expect to spend around PHP 1,000 and 10 to 15 minutes per basket. It’s one of the easiest small business ideas to set up.
12. Photo Booth Rental
Startup cost: PHP 70,000 to PHP 100,000
Items to invest in: DSLR camera, computer, monitor, software app, photo printer, props, studio lighting
Birthday parties, baptismal parties, weddings, corporate events, and many other events aren’t complete without photo booths. Guests love souvenirs from the gatherings they attend, which is why photo booths are a staple in any event in the Philippines.
This is what makes photo booth rentals among the most popular small business ideas today. If you love photography and don’t have enough capital to put up your own studio, the next best thing is a photo booth business.
For every two-hour to four-hour event, your photo booth rental business may earn between PHP 4,000 to PHP 5,000.
13. Food Cart Franchise
Instagram photo by @bogey3000
Startup cost: PHP 50,000 to PHP 300,000
Items to invest in: Whatever item you think can improve your business. Franchisors usually provide equipment and initial supplies to help start your business.
Interested in owning a food cart business? Companies like Franchise Manila and Food Cart Corner can help you find a food cart franchise that suits your budget, interest, and target market. Food carts offering one or two products typically start at a franchise fee of P50,000, which includes equipment, training, and marketing support. More popular food cart franchises like Potato Corner and Bibingkinitan can cost as much as P300,000.
When investing in a food cart business, choose a location with good foot traffic such as malls, terminals, and cafeterias. Also, don’t forget to secure an emergency fund for unforeseen circumstances. Remember that real profit only comes in once you’ve earned the money you’ve invested in your franchise fee.
13. T-Shirt Printing Business
Startup cost: PHP 150,000 to PHP 200,000
Items to invest in: Computer, printer for pigment ink, printer for sublimation ink, heat press, silk screen line table, rotary press, flash dryer, frames, squeegees, t-shirts
It’s easy to earn from a t-shirt printing business, especially if you already have connections within companies and organizations. Apart from customized tees, you can also focus on printing office uniforms, jerseys, hoodies, and canvas bags. However, before putting up this kind of business, it is best to learn different printing methods (digital printing, silkscreen, direct to garment) for a more specialized venture. You can start your business in a spacious garage at home or rent a small commercial space.
15. Water Refilling Station Business
Startup cost: PHP 100,000 to PHP 350,000
Items to invest in: Water refilling machine, slim water bottles, round water bottles, heat gun, stickers, delivery vehicle
If you find a place with no water station or is far from one, take the opportunity and put up a water refilling business. There is a high demand for clean and drinkable water, especially in rural areas. With a budget of PHP 100,000 you can franchise a water refilling stationlike Crystal Clear or Bluewaters. Starting your own brand, on the other hand, can cost as much as PHP 350,000. The investment is worth the money, though. Water is highly profitable and does not expire unlike other products in the market.
With strategy and creativity, you can be your own boss even with low capital. Determine your market check out small business ideas that do not only suit your interest but is highly profitable as well.